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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

What is the history of Shimla?

Nitin Gurha DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

Welcome to the "Queen of Hills", a name which is very rightly given to Shimla. The picture perfect beauty and the beautiful colonial structures will allure you with their charm. No wonder, it has been a popular summer retreat for several decades. Shrouded in forests of Pine, Rhododendron and Oak, Shimla has an interesting history to unfold that speaks a lot about its colonial past. This hill station is ideally approached via a New Delhi to Shimla taxi. Here is a quick peek in the history of shimla that will intrigue you.

Before getting captured and invaded by British East India Company, Shimla was reigned by Prithvi Narayan Shah of Nepal. At that time Shimla was known for the Kalibari temple of Goddess Shyamala Devi and hence was named after her. Ever since then the natives have been rooted to their culture and attach high significance to the rituals and customs. Do not miss out on visiting this temple as it speaks of its own history and will make you feel one with the divine power by the aura that surrounds the entire temple.

After the capture, Britishers modified Shimla to suit their administrative structure and so developed Kalka-Shimla Railway Line, Viceregal Lodge, Auckland House, Gorton Castle, Shimla Town Hall, The Gaiety Theatre and the Christ church, which are now valued as our heritage sites and make for great sites for your visual inspection. Shimla in this era draped the cloak of modernity keeping intact its cultural values. Shimla was also declared the Summer Capital of the British Raj in India in 1864.

The Viceregal Lodge, formerly the residence of British Viceroy of India, Lord Dufferin, was renamed after independence as Rashtrapati Niwas. The story of this Lodge doesn’t just end here, further the former president of India, Dr. S. Radhakrishna, thought of putting the building to academic use and hence came up the Indian Institute Of Advanced Study. Do not miss this building in your schedule as you are sure to experience some visual pleasure in this place. Climb up your own imaginary Firebolt for a tour to this historic mansion that will make you feel like you have landed in the magical world of Hogwarts, with its unparalleled colonial architecture.

All the construction work carried on in shimla transformed it into an important administrative centre and also being a popular summer retreat it was made the summer capital of the regional Government of Punjab and remained so until the creation of the new city of Chandigarh. Shimla was named the capital of Himachal Pradesh after its creation in 1971. Thus Shimla gradually moved from being a city of reign to a famous tourist destination as known today due to its treasure of scenic beauty. Gaining popularity among tourists, Shimla got caught in the hands of commercialisation with lots of new eateries and shopping spots springing up. Despite this government has made parallel efforts to preserve the basic essence of the place and its captivating charm.

Your time is valuable and each and every moment spent in this heaven will make it all the more valued with the huge treasure of memories that you are sure to take back home!

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