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Road trip from Delhi to Shimla – Distance, Halts & Accommodation

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Breathtaking scenery, gorgeous landscapes and alluring sights are a norm. And it’s no surprise that one of the best road trips in India is from Delhi to Shimla. 

One of the most favourite hill stations of India, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh lies at a staggering altitude of 7500 sq. ft. Shimla’s charisma is not only stored in the mountainscapes but also in the cobbled streets, snug cottages and delectable cuisine. 

If you are planning a road trip from Delhi to Shimla, here’s everything you need to know.

Distance from Delhi to Shimla

The drive to Shimla from Delhi is a bewitching sight in itself. The distance between Delhi to Shimla is approximately 342 km. and can be covered in approximately 8 – 10 hours, depending on the number of pit stops and halts. The road is a beautiful winding path, that offers mesmerizing views of the rising mountains and plunging valleys. 

If in case you choose not to take your own car, there are frequent buses from Delhi to Shimla, the cost for which begins at Rs. 600 per person. You can also opt for a private taxi, the charges for the same would vary. 

Bikes are also a popular choice, given the scenic route and the refreshing breeze. And the distance can also be easily covered in 7 hours! 

Best Time to Visit Shimla

The best months to visit Shimla are from March through June, especially when embarking on a road trip. Shimla in summers is an absolute delight, wherein the temperatures remain at a pleasant 20 degrees celsius through those months. July should be avoided as navigating roads during the summers is rather easy, but during the monsoon season and the winters, it may be cumbersome, and hence travellers are always advised to remain cautious. However, if you are a fan of the snow and more adventurous, you can always choose to journey to Shimla in the months of December and January. 

The breathaking landscapes of Shimla

The Route 

There are primarily 3 routes from Delhi to Shimla, each varying in duration. Each route promises enchanting scenery and landscapes, distinct experiences and different kinds of pit stops. Take a look. 

Delhi – Chandigarh – Shimla via Karnal Highway 

This is by far the easiest and shortest route to Shimla and takes around 7-8 hours. The road conditions are smooth, and most often light traffic is expected with an exception of roadwork or road closures. The route passes through Panipat, Karnal, Kurukshetra, Ambala, Chandigarh, Solan and ends in Shimla, via NH 44, 152 and 5.

Delhi – Shimla via Yamuna Highway 

A longer route when compared to the previous one, this journey approximately takes 11 hours to complete. Passing through NH 44 and 5, this road is much more scenic with wildlife sanctuaries along the way! The route passes through Panipat, Karnal, Yamunanagar, Solan and Chail. 

Delhi – Shimla via Dehradun Highway

One of the longest routes, it will approximately take 12 hours to reach Shimla via this route. Although, long, this route promises scenic sights and stunning landscapes throughout! This road takes you through Ghaziabad, Meerut, Muzaffarnagar, Dehradun, Kolar, Barog and finally Shimla, via NH 334 and 7.

Pitstops and Places to Visit Near Shimla

The roads leading to Shimla pass through beautiful cities, notable monuments and memorable experiences! Explore the top things to see near Shimla.

Rock Garden, Chandigarh

One of the best of Chandigarh’s tourism, the famed Rock Garden in Chandigarh is an ideal pit-stop for a unique experience. This open exhibition site was single-handedly built by Nek Chand in 1957, a former road inspector in Chandigarh. The exhibit boasts over 5000 sculptures and installations that are primarily made with industrial waste and urban waste. The garden itself is divided into three phases, each featuring a distinct character. The eye-pleasing decor throughout the sprawling 40-acres makes this a must on the itinerary.

Rock Garden, Chandigarh
Various sculptures and installations in Rock Garden

Chail Sanctuary, Chail 

When heading to Shimla through Chail, you might want to make the most of the opportunity and extend your stay at the Chail Sanctuary before heading to the final destination. This beautiful wildlife sanctuary is engulfed in lush foliage and a variety of flora. The 1000-acres is home to rare species of birds and fauna. One can spot the wild boar, goral, sambar, spotted deer, Himalayan black bear, and common langur to name a few.

Karna Lake, Karnal

A popular halt when travelling from Delhi to Shimla, the Karna Lake is the tourists’ favourite and lies in the Karnal District. The scenic lake is soothing, calming and blissful. Travellers often spread their picnic mats on the lawns adjacent to this man-made water body. You can also opt for a short boat-ride, while you are here. 

Robber’s Cave, Dehradun 

Adventure enthusiasts, this is your time to shine! Located 8 km. away from Dehradun City, the caves are known for their rather unusual cold springs. Traverse through the caves, with your legs dipped in the cold waters and navigate through the caves. The caves also house beautifully cascading waterfalls. 

Robber's Caves in Dehradun
The spectacular caves

Luxury Holiday Homes & Cottages in Shimla

Shimla prides itself on the curated collection of unique homestays and cottages. From cosy and snug holiday homes by the Mall Road to sprawling cottages in the heart of Shimla, it promises the ideal stay for everyone. Take a look at Vista’s collection of luxury villas in Shimla, that are guaranteed to leave you speechless. 

Northwood Cottage, Shimla 

No. of bedrooms – 3
Ideal for – 12 guests 

Key features of this holiday home in Shimla 

  • Swathed in dense Deodar trees 
  • Was built in 1916
  • Glazed verandah with comfortable furnishings 
  • Stocked bookshelves 

What do we love about this home? 
The property is an embodiment of vintage luxury. An effortless melange of traditional artefacts and modern decor, this cottage in Shimla will take you back in time. 

Whispering Pines, Shimla

No. of Bedrooms – 6
Ideal for – 17 guests 

Key Features of this cottage in Shimla 

  • Beautiful interiors in subtle and soothing hues 
  • Spacious well-furnished bedrooms 
  • Amenities such as barbecue and bonfire can be availed 
  • Incredible views of the forested hills 
  • Private balconies

What do we love about this home?
The exteriors! The beautifully manicured gardens are ideal for a calming yoga and meditation session amidst nature, that overlooks the mesmerizing open valleys.

Deori Cottage, Theog

No. of bedrooms – 2 
Ideal for – 6 guests 

Key Features of this cottage in Shimla 

  • Unique stone and wooden structure 
  • Stunning location in Theog 
  • Sprawling common areas 
  • Cosy outdoors 
  • Amenities such as bonfire can be availed 

What do we love about this home? 
The absolutely magical views that surround this holiday home on all sides. The breathtaking mountainscapes are bound to leave you in awe. 

Jagheri Bagh, Shimla

No. of bedrooms – 4 
Ideal for – 10 guests 

Key features of this cottage in Shimla 

  • Spread across a whopping 8 acres 
  • Was formerly an apple orchard 
  • Regal interiors with modern comforts 
  • Sprawling lawns with swings 
  • Absolutely incomparable landscapes 

What do we love about this home? 
This luxurious holiday home is straight out of a book, complete with breathtaking views, a library and swings, and will transport you to a story of your own! 

The Corner House, Shimla

No. of bedrooms – 3 
Ideal for – 9 guests 

Key features of this home in Shimla

  • Proximity to nearby treks and trails 
  • Modern and comfortable interiors
  • Positioned amidst the dense pine forest 
  • Well-equipped common areas 

What do we love about this home? 
The windows, that not only provide a glimpse of the gorgeous landscapes but also ensure that the mountains never leave you even when you are indoors!

Shimla is one of the most visited destinations in India, and justifiably so. The road trip to Shimla is all things scenic and refreshing, and we cannot recommend it enough!

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Trying to navigate through the twenties, manoeuvring through the ifs and buts, Riya is an aspiring writer looking to expand her skillset. When she's not animatedly dissecting character arcs and storylines, you can find her trying to weave stories and dabbling into poems. She looks forward to all things fries, hardcovers and Brooklyn Nine-Nine.
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