Insider Guide To Shimla Manali: Local Secrets And Tips

Nestled in the Himalayas, Shimla and Ma nali are two of India’s most famous hill stations. Here is an insider guide to Shimla Manali to experience the best of them.

While both places are famous among tourists, but there are hidden gems and local secrets. That can further transform your trip from usual to unusual. This guide contains the tips to make your journey enjoyable.

Shimla – The Queen of Hills

Shimla, the capital of Himachal, is famous for its colonial structure, vibrant culture, and stunning landscapes. Further, here are Mumbai to Shimla Manali local tour packages, some insider tips. That will help you to make the most of your visit.

1: The Ridge and Mall Road

The Ridge and Mall Road are the heartbeats of Shimla. No doubt these spots are often crowded. Visit them early in the morning or late during the evening.

It firstly allows you to enjoy their charm without the hustle and bustle. Stroll along Mall Road, grab a hot coffee, and watch the sunrise from the Ridge. The view is simply stunning.

2: Explore Beyond the Usual Jakhoo Temple and Glen Forest

While Jakhoo Temple is a famous tourist spot. But, taking the less trodden path to reach it can be a rewarding experience. Firstly, start your hike early in the morning from Sanjauli.

The trail is serene and meanwhile offers charming views of the city. Similarly, Glen Forest, just 4 km from the Ridge, is a hidden treasure. It’s a perfect spot for a quiet picnic and some quiet time amidst nature.

3: Local Cuisine Himachali Delights

Don’t leave Shimla without trying the local Himachali cuisine. There are many places on Mall Road that are firstly famous for its Chana Bhatura.

Further, you may enjoy tasty Sidu (a type of Himachali bread) at the Lakkar Bazaar. For a real dining experience, visit famous places where you can indulge in a Dham meal.

4: Shop Smart Lakkar Bazaar and Tibetan Market

For souvenirs, skip the overpriced shops on Mall Road and head to Lakkar Bazaar. Here you’ll find beautiful wooden hand made crafts at cheaper prices.

The Tibetan Market near the bus stand is also worth a visit. That further offers the unique jewelry, clothes, and trinkets.

Manali – The Valley of Gods

Manali, stands out with its scenic beauty and outdoor options. It attracts tourists from all over the world. Here are some local tips to find the best of Manali.

1: Old Manali The Bohemian Paradise

While New Manali is bustling with tourists, Old Manali offers a more laid back vibe. Wander through its narrow lanes, explore quaint cafes, and enjoy live music sessions during the evenings. Don’t miss the Manu Temple, devoted to the sage Manu, located in this part of town.

2: Solang Valley and Beyond

Solang Valley is famous for outdoor sports. But, few people venture beyond to explore the hidden gems.

Take a short trek to Anjani Mahadev a scenic waterfall. It further contains a small temple devoted to Lord Shiva. If you visit during winter, the frozen waterfall is a spectacular sight.

3: Hidden Villages Naggar and Jana

Naggar, a quaint village about 20 km from Manali. Its home to the ancient Naggar Castle and the Nicholas Roerich Art Gallery. It’s a perfect place to escape the tourist crowds and soak in some history and art.

Jana village, one more hidden gem, offers a glimpse into traditional Himachali life. After that, don’t miss a meal at the cafe near to waterfall. There, you can enjoy real local dishes cooked on wood fire.

4: Hot Springs of Manikaran and Vashisht

While Manikaran’s hot springs are famous, they can get quite crowded. For a more easy experience, firstly visit the Vashisht hot springs.

They are located about 3 km from Manali. The natural hot water baths are known to have healing effects. Above all, they are perfect for a reviving dip after a long day of sightseeing.

5: Local Cuisine and Craft

Manali’s food scene is diverse, but to taste the local flavors, visit local joints. They are known for its trout dishes, and some mouth watering Himachali cuisine.

For handmade souvenirs, the Manu Market is a great place. From there, you can shop for woolen clothes, shawls, and local handicrafts.

Travel Tips for Shimla and Manali

1: Best Time to Visit

The ideal time to visit here is from March to June and from September to November. During it, weather remains pleasant, making it perfect for sightseeing and outdoor activities. If you’re a snow enthusiast, plan a trip between December and February.

2: Packing Essentials

Firstly, pack layers as the weather can be unpredictable. Even in summer, evenings can get chilly.

Further, comfortable walking shoes are a must for exploring the hilly terrain. Don’t forget sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat to protect yourself from the harsh mountain sun.

3: Getting Around

Both Shimla and Manali have efficient local transport systems. In Shimla, the toy train from Kalka to Shimla offers a scenic and pleasant journey.

If in Manali, you can firstly rent a bike or scooter. Above all, its a great way to explore it and nearby areas at your own pace.

4: Respect the Local Culture

While both towns are tourist friendly, it’s needed to respect local customs and rituals. Wear modest clothes mainly when going to temples and other sacred sites. Further, always ask for permission before taking photos of local people.


Shimla and Manali offer a perfect blend of natural beauty, thrill and cultural richness. Try to explore these places beyond the usual tourist trails and experience them like a local.

With insider guide to Shimla Manali you’ll create moments that last a lifetime. So pack your bags and embrace the mountain spirit. Embark further on an enjoyable journey to the heart of Himachal Pradesh.