Shimla also known as Simla, is the capital and the largest city of the Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. In 1864, Shimla was declared as the summer capital of British India, succeeding Murree, northeast of Rawalpindi. After independence, the city became the capital of Punjab and was later made the capital of Himachal Pradesh. It is the principal commercial, cultural and educational centre of the state. It was the capital city of British Burma (present-day Myanmar) from 1942 to 1945.
Small hamlets were recorded prior to 1815 when British forces took control of the area. The climatic conditions attracted the British to establish the city in the dense forests of Himalayas. As the summer capital, Shimla hosted many important political meetings including the Simla Accord of 1914 and the Simla Conference of 1945. After independence, The state of Himachal Pradesh came into being in 1948 as a result of the integration of 28 princely states. Even after independence, the city remained an important political centre, hosting the Shimla Agreement of 1972. After the reorganisation of the state of Himachal Pradesh, the existing Mahasu district was named Shimla.
Shimla is home to a number of buildings that are styled in the Tudorbethan and neo-Gothic architectures dating from the colonial era, as well as multiple temples and churches. The colonial architecture and churches, the temples, and the natural environment of the city attracts tourists. Attractions include the Viceregal Lodge, the Christ, the Jakhoo Temple, the Mall Road, the Ridge and Annadale which together form the city centre. The Kalka-Shimla Railway line built by the British, a UNESEO World Heritage Site, is also a major tourist attraction. Owing to its steep terrain, Shimla hosts the mountain biking race MTB Himalaya, which started in 2005 and is regarded as the biggest event of its kind in South Asia. Shimla also has the largest natural ice skating rink in South Asia. Apart from being a tourism centre, the city is also an educational hub with a number of colleges and research institutions.
Simla (also referred to as Simla) is Northern Indian city. It is a very popular tourist destination in the city and is also a hub for education in the country. The city is the home to many universities. This means the city has a very young population. Young people like to go out. Thanks to this, Shimla provides a very active nightlife scene for those spending time there.
The Night Bazaar
Shimla is a great location for those that enjoy shopping because you can do it all night there. The Lower Bazaar and the Ram Bazaar are open late into the night. Visitors can buy souvenirs, local clothing, and other interesting items sold by the locals there. The air is filled with traditional Hindi music to help keep you entertained while you shop. Haggling isn’t just allowed in India, it is practically encouraged. You should also feel uncomfortable dressing casual while shopping in the night bazaar.
Rendezvous Bar and Restaurant
This is one of the more popular bars in the area. Not all bars allow women to drink there, but this one does. It is a great place to catch a cricket match. Cricket is the national sport of India. The bar is known for selling drinks at a fair price and has great food as well.
Visit the Ridge in the Evening
The Ridge is a popular location in Shimla for nightlife. It is especially fun during the summer festival season. The place seems to be alive all day and night during the festival and music fills the air from the live performers. The city lies in the foothills of the Himalayas and they can be easily seen in the distance from the Ridge.
Culture and history info
Located on the lofty ranges of the Himalayas, Shimla is a place that has been untouched by commercialization and globalization. It is very different from rest of the Indian states and has retained its old world charm. The culture of Shimla is such that it portrays a sound balance between traditional values and modern thoughts. The cultural heritage of Simla is very traditional and rural. Read on further about the culture of Shimla.
The people in Shimla depend on agriculture as a source of their livelihood. Cattle rearing is yet another way of earning a decent livelihood. The people in Shimla live in small huts with slated roofs. Every unit of village has its own shops and other facilities and necessities. There are regular fairs and festivals in these villages. You will find more information about the culture, music, dance, people and religion of Shimla in our related sections.
Shimla District lies between the longitude 77o-0" and 78o-19" east and latitude 30o-45" and 31o-44" north. It is bounded by Mandi and Kullu in the north, Kinnaur in the east, the state of Uttaranchal in the south, Sirmaur, district in the west. The elevation of the district ranges from 300 to 6000 metres. The topology of the district is rugged and tough. Shimla district derives its name from Shimla town which was once a small village. Shimla district in its present form came into existence from 1st Sept,1972 on the reorganisation of the districts of the state.
History of Shimla goes back to the period of Anglo-Gurkha war in the beginning of 19th century. In 1804 the Gurkhas , who had suffered a severe defeat at the hands of the Sikhs at the battle of Kangra, a hill fortress about sixty miles from Shimla, where according to some accounts they lost thousand of men in the fight and many others from disease, commenced to ravage the states and hills surrounding Shimla. Gurkhas built many forts around Shimla. One of these strongholds, the Jagatgarh fortress, was the origin of the modern Jutogh, the well known military cantonment adjoining Shimla. By 1808 the invaders had conquered all the fortified posts between the Jamuna and Satluj, and from their capital Arki began their ruthless rule over the neighbouring hill states, untill at length the people in their wretchedness appealed to the British for help. A small British force under Major General 'Sir David Ochterlony' was despatched to liberate the hill men from Gurkhas. Majority of hill chiefs responded to the call and joined the British forces. The rivals were engaged in the toughest battle at 3750 ft high Ramgarh fort at Nalagarh. A decisive battle took place near the fort at Malaon in which superior guns of the British overpowered the enemy. The battle of Malaon on 15th May 1815 ended the dream of the Gurkhas, to rule over this part of the land for any longer. After few days, an official declaration was made according to which all Chieftains who had joined British in expelling the Gurkhas were restored with their land under the British protection. The maharaja of Patiala who has also rendered invaluable services to the British was rewarded with land in the neighbourhood of the area now comprising Shimla. After the defeat of Gurkhas they were forced to sign the 'Treaty of Sanjauli' . The company retained the strategic forts of Sabathu, Kotgarh, Ramgarh and Sandoch.
Present day Shimla District comprises of 19 erstwhile hill states mainly Balson, Bushahr, Bhaji and Koti, Darkoti, Tharoch & Dhadi,Kumharsain, Khaneti & Delath, Dhami, Jubbal , Keothal, Rawingarh, Ratesh, Sangri.
Bushahr was one of the oldest of the hill states after Kashmir in the Western Himalayas. According to one legend .the Bushahr dynasty was founded by 'Pradhuman', the son of Lord Krishna. In order to marry the daughter of Banasur, the local chief of shonitpur(Sarahan), Pradhuman is said to have come to that place and after the death of Banasur in an encounter with him, he became the chief of Bushar and Kinnaur regions, since Banasur has no son. According to C.F.Kennedy , Bushar was founded by Danbar Singh an immigrant Rajput from Deccan in 1412 A.D. In 1914 Britishers recognised Padam Singh as legitimate heir and was crowned Raja of Rampur Bushahr. Ultimately in March, 1948 Rampur Bushahr became part and parcel of province of Himachal Pradesh.
Jubbal one of the Shimla Hill States with an area of 288 Sq miles was originally tributary to Sirmaur, but after Gurkha war, it became independent. Raja Karam Chand was the founder of the Jubbal State. Jubbal merged with the Indian Union after independence and became a part of Himachal Pradesh on 15th April, 1948. at the time of merger 'Dig Vijay Singh ' was the ruler of the state.
Shimla District in its present form came into existence from 1st September 1972 on the reorganisation of the districts of the state.After the reorganisation , the erstwhile Mahasu district lost its entity and its major portion was merged with Shimla. Shimla district derives its name from Shimla town, the district headquarters and now state capital of Himachal Pradesh.