Traveling is a personal issue. While the growth of tourism in India has led to massive commercialization of some of the best known hill stations near Delhi, some of their closer destinations which were earlier neglected & unknown have risen to the top. Truth be told, these places should remain under the hood because it really would just be disastrous if they fall prey to wealthy industrialists & hotel brands who in the name of hospitality & tourism might start ripping the place apart. The Uttarakhand disaster is perhaps the biggest eye opener of what happens when man pushes the nature beyond limits.
Anyway, without diverting the subject much I would like to share this awesome list of some relatively unknown hill stations near Delhi.
- Kangojodi (Sirmour District)
Kangojodi, a 7 kms long pine forest area is right in the middle of nowhere. Don’t bother hitting Google to search more, you really wouldn’t find anything except our cozy campsite. Think lush green pine forest area, rare species of flora & fauna, a natural spring water stream as it flows at the ridge of the valley and fresh air uninterrupted by pollution or dust. This place is a must visit for anyone seeking solitude in the hills and misses the charm of a hill station like Manali used to have, except there are no streets here. An absolute offbeat wonder for that perfect weekend getaway.
- Tirthan Valley (Kullu District)
Technically, Trithan Valley cannot be termed JUST as one of the hill stations near Delhi and be gotten over with. It has got to be one of the most breath-taking places in entire Himachal. Even though it’s not a very touch and go “weekend friendly” place, primarily because the distance is a little more than 500 kms, it is easily a great getaway considering you have 4-5 days at ease. Think bon-fires, music, a beautiful river and homestays that are more welcoming than 5 star hotels or resorts. It is suggested you look up TripAdvisor for the best options available. The temperatures tend to fall below freezing point in the colder times, post Oct-Nov. Trout fishing is a popular and fun activity one can indulge in here (March-October).
- Churwadhar (Sirmour District)
Churwadhar is another option. The beautiful valley is open for tourists in season time which is from April to October. Churwadhar is about 400 kms from Delhi and is a great option for those who are looking for some quiet time by themselves. This is about 90 kms from “then” queen of hills – Simla. Relatively unknown to the world, this spot has a camping site where you can think of staying over. It’s better off than staying at any other guest house in the nearby area. Try hitting the road further and you will be greeted by the temples of Haripurdhar. The splendid view from here cannot be described in words.
- Chindi(Solan District)
An offbeat destination like this is hard to come by. Maybe it was created by God for backpackers & people who are explorers by heart. If you have been craving to take a break to rejuvenate or relax and be by yourself and do a little soul seeking. My suggestion is you carry a camera , a notebook & a backpack with some extra clothes and just take a trek into the nearest village. The road less traveled is always more spiritually exhilarating.
- Mandi/ Prashar Lake (Mandi District)
Mandi is a quiet town en route to Manali from Delhi. But that’s not even the best part. If you can get a bus from Madi to Bagi, and ask the locals for the route to Prashar Lake. Take that trek for an unforgettable experience. FYI, this is a lake so unknown, a lot of people never get there. Completely non-commercial & offbeat area of Himachal that can recharge you faster than anything else. Worth a visit if you have been trying to escape the monotony that your regular life has to offer.
This is our list. Do you have any places in mind that an explorer like yourself wants to recommend. Feel free to share them in the comments section below.