Making a movie on a shoestring budget and would like to shoot a dance sequence? Wish to show a honeymoon spot but cannot travel abroad? Not to worry for you do not have to travel far: Shimla is close by and can replace Switzerland in any movie, well almost!!
Shimla has long been the Bollywood movie maker’s ideal locale for his/her muse. Instead of spending a fortune on exotic locales discerning directors have known that India has some fantastic tourist spots, which can make a movie a super-duper hit.
This beautiful hill station is easily accessible either by road or rail from Chandigarh and Delhi. Good facilities and amenities, easy accessibility, friendly people and a relatively safe tourist destination make Shimla a favourite amongst travelers and moviemakers.
The capital of Himachal Pradesh, and the erstwhile summer capital of British India, Shimla is the Queen of all hill stations. It derives its name from the goddess ‘Shyamala Devi’. Surrounded by thick deodar, oak, pine and rhododendron forests, green pastures and snow capped peaks, Shimla is beauty personified.
It boasts of a natural skating rink, the one and only of its kind in India and some great Victorian architecture. The main shopping area is known as the Mall and houses restaurants, bars, shops and banks. Scandal Point and the Ridge are two of the high points in the Mall. A classic example of Victorian architecture is the Gaiety theatre, which is also found on the Mall road. Lakkad Bazaar is famous for its wooden items.
Situated on the Ridge is Christ Church, one of North India’s largest churches. With its stained glass windows, this Church is a definite must-see. Go past the cobbled roads and climb some really steep steps to catch a breathtaking view of the city from Jakhoo Hill which, locals will tell you, is the highest point in that area. Be sure to pack a good pair of walking shoes if you are planning to visit Shimla – there’s plenty of walking to be done and steps to be climbed!
Shimla is a trekkers and hikers paradise. You can amble around all by yourself at Glen forest, Summer Hill, Mashobra and Naldhera. Mashobra is a small village near Shimla surrounded by pine forests and is a great getaway for treks. Shimla also boasts of having the highest golf course in India, Naldhera, You can also experience hot sulphur springs at Tattapani. British Commander Kitchener’s home is the other interesting hotspot and so is the Wildflower Hall, which has been converted into a hotel now. Kufri in Shimla is a famous skiing destination and a trip to Shimla is incomplete without a trip to Kufri.
With so many interesting and viable options, it is no wonder that our directors are looking at Shimla as an ideal destination for their shoots! Have you been to Shimla? Did you catch any Bollywood stars on a shoot there? What are your favorite places to visit in Shimla?