Beat the Heat; Visit These Unexplored Hill Stations in India This Summer

The summer sun is screaming heat, as if seeking for a vengeance for all the time we didn’t miss it during the beautiful winter. Our hats are out and so are those extra water bottles, ready to be stocked in the refrigerator. And the hotter the weather gets, the more we want to stay indoors! But how about an escape from the heat altogether? Nothing can satisfy a summer-stricken soul like a quick trip to a hill station. Where the mountains are swamped with light fog, afternoons are breezy and evenings demand a cosy fireplace; hill stations are inviting and we recommend you take this chance. But instead of crowding in the already-jampacked cliché hill stations, you can visit this unexplored hill stations that are idyllic, fuss-free and perfect for a weekend getaway!  

1. Almora, Uttarakhand

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Nearest City: Haldwani
This is one of the most underrated hill stations in the country because its crescent-shaped mountain ridge can practically never fail to amaze. Flanked by the Kumaon mountains of the mighty Himalayas, Almora is a quaint town in Uttarakhand that is not wrecked by tourists. Perfect for a summer escape, if sipping warm something against a spectacular backdrop is your idea of vacation, Almora is where you should be! Of course, if you want to indulge into some activities, you can visit the Binsar temple and the Shiva Temples in Jageshwar and there's also a very petite but interesting local bazzar to laze and splurge around!   

2. Chikhaldara, Maharashtra

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons  

Nearest City: Amravati 
Just when you thought the hill stations of Maharashtra were limited to Lonavala-Khandala, Matheran & Mahabaleshwar, here’s a refreshing change. Unlike the others in Western part of the state, Chikhaldara is located in the Northern part, making it an oasis in the otherwise hot cities! Apart from the couple of forts and striking set of temples, Chikhaldara flaunts a stunning waterfall like Bhim Kund and a tranquil lake of Kalapani that can transfer you to a sublime state, replete of verdant freshness! For some gorgeous views, you can head to any of the viewpoints like sunset point, monkey point, Mozari point, Malviya point, Prospects point, Panchbol point and Devi point.

3. Shimoga, Karnataka

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons  

Nearest City: Bangalore
Apart from being in the magnificent Western Ghats, Shimoga’s rich vegetation abounding with mystic forests and gushing waterfalls makes it a perfect summer retreat. Basically, Shimoga serves as a base to explore the near-by spots that include waterfalls, sanctuaries, dams and small, untouched hamlets. To beat the heat, get drenched in the splash of the Jog falls or the Dabbe Falls, go for kayaking over the Sharavati River and visit the countless small spots that astonish you with minimalistic beauty! 

4. Dhanaulti, Uttarkhand

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons

Nearest City: Dehradun
Another hidden gem in the ‘Devbhumi’ of Uttrakhand, Dhanaulti is a great unexplored alternative to Mussoorie. And before you underestimate the charm of this small town, you must glance at its alluring vistas that look like nature was really creative while making this one! While the winters cover the town in a crisp white blanket, summer is when you can admire the emerald-green trees encompassing the hills. You can go for a hike or set out a camp, or just relax in your hotel, it is amazing either ways! 

5. Idukki, Kerela

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons  

Nearest City: Kottayam
Home to Anamudi, the highest peak in the Western Ghats, Idukki is all about relishing hot coffee as you admire the landscapes that boast tea and coffee plantations, huge dam, hills and forests that smell of the raw spices like cardamom and pepper. Go boating in the dam, hike to the Nedumkandam Hill or just relax, soaking in the fresh air! 

6. Ponmudi, Kerala

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons  

Nearest City: Thiruvananthapuram
If you love waking up to the scent of forest flowers as birds chirp merrily on the trees just outside the window, Ponmudi is the right pick for you. Ponmudi flaunts 22 hairpin bends that can give you a head-rush, so even the adventure lovers have something for them in store. Yearlong wonderful climate makes it’s a good place to hike, the sublime area around the Golden Valley is ideal for a tranquil day-out and Agasthyarkoodam peak is great for wildlife viewing.   

7. Chopta, Uttarakhand

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons  

Nearest City: Rishikesh
The main reason to visit this bounty of nature this summer- it is gaining popularity rapidly. Thanks to its mesmerising panoramas that resemble Switzerland, Chopta might soon lose its unexplored tag. Velvety meadows in different shades of green, in contrast to the white Himalayas that stand tall in the background, Chopta is picture-perfect, quite literally! Diverse flora and fauna and ample trekking opportunities make it a great pick for a summer vacation for all kinds of travellers. 

8. Kurseong, West Bengal

Image Source: Wikimedia Commons  

Nearest City: Siliguri
Just a drive away from the pretty but crowded hill station of Darjeeling is this abundance of beauty, pristine and untouched! White Orchid plantations, toy train, dramatic slopes abundant of tea plantations, dreamy rivers and bordering mountains; Kurseong has it all, minus the crowds! Add to that the sightseeing places like Kettle Valley, Whistle Khola, Deer Park and Rock garden and you have an activity-filled vacation for sure! 
 
Visit these unexplored hill stations this summer and experience the charm of these destinations that never cease to astonish!
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
RENUKA SHAHANE RENUKA SHAHANE

Living out of a carry-on and traversing through the labyrinths of Europe, exploring the wilderness of America, divulging the eccentric culture of the Latin world and re-connecting her roots that sprawl in the rustic villages of India is one dream that she sees every single night. Once Lost, Now Found; Renuka is still oscillating between the paths to choose and the dreams to chase. A believer of righteousness, she likes to trust that her life is in accordant with her favourite book.

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