There is something mystic about walking through uncharted hilly routes – getting lost amidst verdant pines, exploring a tiny deserted house in the middle of wilderness or simply follow the chirping sound of birds through the woods. The true nomadic souls are often looking out for destinations that are secluded and safely away from the maddening crowd. Read on to know about five hidden hill stations that are ideal for a backpacking trip:
Lambasingi, Andhra Pradesh:
Popularly known as “Kashmir of Andhra Pradesh”, Lambasingi is one of the most unexplored hill towns of India. Comprising of small houses, pepper and coffee plantations, the captivating beauty of the place lies in its rustic feel. The town experiences one of the severest winters as compared to other hill stations of southern India and the only place in South India to receive snowfall. The tiny hamlet, located at an altitude of 1025 meters, offers great opportunities for hiking, trekking and camping. A blend of lush greens, pale mists and tranquil environs, Lambasingi is an ideal backpacking destination for all those who seek a solitary vacation. A road trip to Lambasingi would expose you to panoramic landscapes. The nearest railway station is Chintapalli, which is approximately 20 km from Lambasingi. You can spot your train online at the NTES site to get information related to train timing and running status.
Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh:
Settled at an elevation of about 3000 meters, Tawang is one of the most quaint and virgin hill stations in the north-east. This romantic hill town of Arunachal Pradesh is famous for its Buddhist monasteries, panoramic view of the Himalayan ranges and flowery meadows. An idyllic destination during autumn as the waterfalls are in their full glory and cosmos shrubs come alive in a riotous blossom of red and pink. The War-memorial and visit to the Indo-China border are special attractions of the place. Tawang can be reached by air, road as well as rail route. The nearest airport is at Tezpur while the closest railway station is Rangapara.
Nestled amidst lush green hills, the small hill town of Ponmudi seems straight out of a picture postcard. A shutterbug’s dream, Ponmudi is famous for its tea plantations and picturesque sunsets. Located in Thiruvananthapuram district, the presence of River Kallar that gurgles through Ponmudi adds to its pristine quality. A deer park, wildlife sanctuary and a short excursion to Meenmutty Falls would ensure that you have a perfect melange of fun and solitude for your vacation. Trivandrum is the nearest railhead and airport from Ponmudi and it would be a good idea to have prior train booking to avoid any last minute hassle.
Tucked away among the misty Garhwal Himalayas, Chopta is one of the tenderly hidden secrets of Uttarakhand. Chopta serves as a base for treks to both Tungnath and Chandrashila. A trekking trip atop Tungnath will take you to the sacred shrine of Tungnath Temple. The lofty mountain chains, velvety meadows and awe-inspiring views – Chopta is nothing less than a slice of paradise. A trekker’s paradise owing to its rugged, unexplored terrains, the hill resort is best visited during the summer months as there are landslides and roadblocks during the rains. Apart from roads, you can also take a train till Rishikesh and from there hire a cab to reach Chopta. Don’t forget to check ixigo apps that will help you to estimate where your train is.
Banjar Valley, Himachal Pradesh
Through avid travelers might be acquainted with this place, Banjar Valley remains relatively unexplored. The Valley comprises of Banjar Town, Jibhi, Chaini and Shoja villages. Soaking in incredible views of the majestic peaks, trekking to dilapidated forts and trout fishing – Banjar Valley is a perfect place to reconnect with nature. Though the best way to reach Banjar Valley is by road, you can also board a train till Shimla and hire a cab from there. Check for trains available in this route and spot your train at the NTES website or app.
This summer if you are seeking for a secret destination in India, here is your chance to visit some of these obscure hill stations before anyone else gets there. So get set with your backpacks, hiking shoes and cameras to conquer these less explored spots!