Alawyersvoyage Shimla Train

Himachal Pradesh is a beautiful hill state in western Himalaya. Discover the itinerary, accommodation and sightseeing information for Shimla – Manali – Dharamshala – Dalhousie and Amritsar, the Himachal Pradesh Highlights.  

Himachal Highlights – 12 Days Itinerary

Himalaya houses spectacular snowy peaks, lakes and plunging river valleys and is India’s outdoor adventure playground. Host to the Dalai Lama, Himachal Pradesh has a strong Tibetan presence.


Shimla (2N) – Manali (3N) – Dharamshala (2N)- Dalhousie(2N) – Amritsar(2N).

alawyersvoyage Route Map HP delights

Route Map

Day-wise breakup of the Itinerary 

Day -1 & 2: Transfer from Delhi to Shimla

Shimla is one of the most popular hill resorts, bustling with a happy flow of Indian vacationers and honeymooners. The long winding street, the Mall, runs just below the spine of the hills.

alawyersvoyage Shimla Train




1. The Ridge (Street)- Located at central part of Shimla, this large open esplanade extending from east to Scandal point is thronged with locals and tourists for panoramic view of mountains and activities. It’s a must visit sight.

2. Christ Church (Church) Located at the Ridge’s east end, it is the second oldest surviving churches in north India.

3. Rashtrapati Niwas (Historic Building) It is also known as Viceregal Lodge and is one of the Shimla’s most beautiful architectural models! It is built on the observatory hill, the second highest point in Shimla.

4. The Mall (Street)This main street of Shimla is strung with hotels, shops, eateries, clubs, colonial-era buildings and people!

5. Jakhu TempleMost famous temple of Shimla, is an ancient temple dedicated to God Hanuman. It sits atop the highest hill (2455m), but after a worthwhile hike of about 2.5 Kms, you will be rewarded with a splendid view.

6. KufriLocated about 17-18 kms near Shimla, this is a tiny hill station famous for its skiing, trekking and hiking trails.



Shimla has lot of hotels but are far from the Centre. Getting deals on rooms may not always be possible, keeping in mind the town’s popularity. You will find a room from Rs 600 to Rs 30,000 per night. You can check YMCA (INR 800 onwards), Spars Lodge (INR 2300 to 3200 onwards), Sunnymead (INR 5000 onwards), Ballyhack Cottage (INR 5,500 onwards), Chapslee (INR 21,000 onwards).


By Taxi

The Kalka-Shimla Himachal Taxi Union has its office near the Old Bus Station. The Distance is 360 Kms and its about 8 -9 Hours drive. The taxi cost will be around  INR 9-10 per km for Sedans; INR 12 for (6 +1 seater) and INR 18-20 (Tempo traveller- 12 Seater) per km.

By Bus

The Himachal Road Transport Corporation (HRTC) runs seven Volvo Ac buses. Duration is about 10 hours and cost is about 1000. Click here for more info.

By Train

One of the little joys of Shimla is getting to it by narrow gauge Kalka-Shimla railway, from Kalka. Click here for more details.



1. If you have limited time, opt for Delhi-Chandigarh flight and thereafter hire a taxi for your onward journey to Shimla. The distance from Chandigarh is about 113 kms. Cost for small car is about INR 2000 for one way.

2. Most hotels and travel agencies can organize car transfers to other extended towns. Always check with them about transfers prior to your trip.

3. The only way to get around central Shimla is on foot. It’s a car free zone from the Ridge to The Mall.

If you are looking to spend more time in Dalhousie, this itinerary will help you plan a better trip.

Day 3 to 5 – Transfer to Manali

Leave early morning and drive to Manali. The distance is 250 Kms and driving time is 8 hours. Manali has spell binding views and charming streams.

alawyersvoyage Manali



1. Hadimba Temple – This wood and stone temple is dedicated to Hadimba, wife of Bhima. It is great example of richly carved wooden doorways and figures of gods, dancers and animals.

2. Old Manali –Indian mountain village, Backpacker’s hub, old houses of wood and stone.

3. Buddhist Monasteries– There’s small Tibetan community south of the town Centre. Visit some popular monasteries

4. Excursion to Rohtang passLocated around 50Kms from Manali, Rohtang pass is a high mountain, which connects the Kullu Valley of Spiti Valley. This is one of the spectacular destinations in Kullu region. The pass is open from June to October



Manali is packed with budget friendly and mid range hotels but by far, the best budget hotels are couple of kilometers north in the villages of Old Manali and Vashisht. The best upmarket hotels are in the Centre and Old Manali.  Check Johnson Hotel (INR 3000 onwards), Banon Resort (INR 3500 onwards), Drifter’s Inn (INR 1500 onwards), Zostel (INR 2200 onwards ), Sunshine Heritage (INR 3200 onwards).


1. Manali is a gateway for skiing in Solang Valley and Trekking in Parvati Valley. If time permits, you can also visit Vashisht village, 2 kms away from Manali. Mostly visited for temples and hot spring baths.

2. If you love dim sums, this is the best place to eat it with chilly sauce.

3. If you wish to satiate your thirst for adventure, go for river rafting. About 80 Kms (2 Hour’s drive) from Manali, lies Manikaran Sahib, which is most sought after for this activtiy.

4. Carry woollen clothes even if you are going in summer.

5. Mall Road is ideal for shopping but requires lot of bargaining.

Day 6 & 7 – Transfer to Dharamshala

Early morning, you will head towards Dharamshala. Drive directly to McLeod Ganj, suburb of Dharamshala. It is famous for the residence of His Holiness the 14thDalai Lama, monasteries, lakes, and temples. Overnight at McLeod Ganj.

The distance to Dharamshala is 245 Kms and driving time is 6-7 hours.

alalwyersvoyage Dalailama temple

Dalai Lama Temple; Image Source –



1. St John in the Wilderness  (Church)A place worth visiting.

2.Tibet Museum- Voices the story of Tibetan History. Entry is free.

3. Namgyalk Gompa (Monastery)This is a monastery in Tsuglagkhang Complex. You can watch the monks in lively debate in the courtyard from 2pm to 3 pm.

4. Boat ride to Dal LakeSurrounded by Deodar trees, enjoy your boat ride or take walk aroufn this lake.

5.Bhagsu Waterfall One of the popular attractions near McLeod Ganj.



Popular places fill up quickly so advance booking is recommended. Check Pink House (INR 1000 onwards), Green Hotel (INR 800-3000), Hotel Tibet (INR 2000-3000), Hotel Triund Heights (INR 4000 onwards), Chonor House (Rs 5500 onwards), Victoria Palace Hotel (Rs 2500 onwards).


1. Depending upon your itinerary, you can wander around McLeod Ganj. You can visit Bhagsu and Dharamkot for more rural, quaint and laid-back experience. It is famous for long stayers and backpackers.

2. Explore the little pathways that circumambulate the Dalai Lama Complex. Enroute there are benches to sit and enjoy the Dharamshala valley view. Walk is about 15-20 minutes.

3. Do not visit the place without advance hotel booking, especially during peak season.

4. You will find good bargains at street markets.

Day 8 & 9 – Transfer to Dalhousie

Get ready for another drive through scenic mountains. This striking hill station, located in Chamba district, houses pine-clad valleys and mountain views. The roads of Dalhousie are famous for its shape as 8.

Distance to Dalhousie is 120 kms and driving time about 4 Hours.

alawyersvoyage dalhousie

Dalhousie; Image Source Buddymantra



There are not much of attractions within Dalhousie and for sightseeing, you will have to travel the places which are around Dalhousie.

1. Daikund Peak- Most uplifting spot near Dalhousie, known for trekking, camping and panoramic views.

2. Khajjar – Known as India’s mini Switzerland, it is a small hill station located at 2000 meters above sea level and is about 1 hour’s drive from Dalhousie. Take strolls at meadows, trek to Kalatop wild reserve or enjoy the scenic view.

3. Khajji Nag (temple)– Located near Khajjar lake, this temple displays perfect blend of Mughal and Hindu style architecture.

4. Kalatop Wild Reserve– High altitude wild reserve located at elevation of 2500 meters from sea level.

5. Chamera Lake –An artificial lake and the site of the Chamera Dam. Known for adventure, nature and photography.

For detailed itinerary of Dalhousie, click here.



There aren’t any 5 star hotels in Dalhousie, but many options for 3 and 4 star hotels, offering good service. Check Hotel Mount View and Spa (INR 6000 onwards), Grand View (INR 5500 onwards), Hotel Grace Mount (INR 3500 onwards), Hotel Monal (INR 2000 onwards).



1.  You can find cheap accommodation in Banikhet, 8 kms before Dalhousie.

2.  Check weather conditions. The intensity of weather varies within the State itself.

Day 10 & 11 – Transfer to Amritsar

This is the last leg of your long drive. Drive to Amritsar, which is at a distance of 200 Kms and driving time being 4.5 Hours.


alawyersvoyage Amritsar Golden Temple

Golden Temple, Amritsar


1. Golden Temple – Serene and humbling sight in the city. Spiritually, the focus of attention is Amrit Sarovar, from which Amritsar takes its name. The entry to this temple is free.

2. Jallianwala Baug (historic site) – Site that houses a memorial of national importance to commemorates 1500 Indians who were killed by a British officer who ordered his soldiers to shoot the unarmed protestors in 1919.

3. Ram Bagh (park)- Former palace grounds of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, now serves as public park.

4. Wagah Border– Witness Border – closing ceremony. Every day before sunset, members of Indian and Pakistan border guards meet at border post to engage in 30-minute display of military showman-ship. Note that for visitors, cameras are permitted but large and small bags are banned. Lockers are available for Rs 50.



Ramada Amritsar (Rs 4000 onwards) is walking distance from Golden temple,  Mrs Bhandari’s guest house (Rs 2750 onwards), Hotel Indus (Rs 2100 onwards), the view of Golden Temple from this hotel is dramatic!

Day 12 – Transfer back to Delhi

Depending upon your itinerary and budget, you can either take a flight back to Delhi or travel by car. If you intend to opt for car, the distance is about 450 kms (7.5 hours) and flight duration is about 1.5 hours.

Best Time to Go

 May- June; Early Sept-Oct – Good for Trekking and other activities.

Mid July; Early Sept (Monsoon) – Visit Spiti and Lahaul, which remains dry.

                      Nov- April – Good for Snow lovers.


There is a wide spectrum of outdoor activities in Himachal Pradesh. Activities comprise camping, trekking, mountain biking, river rafting. There are many professional adventure operators such as Great Escape Routes, Shimla Walks, Himalayan Caravan Adventure to name few.

We hope this is useful for you. In case you any questions, connect with us! 🙂

You may want to read: A beginner’s guide to the Valley of Flowers

Follow us on Instagram for some wanderlust vibes!