India is a country that has a varied geography, ranging from tropical forests to snow clad mountains. Hill Stations in India, based on pleasant heights of the Himalayas or the south Indian hill ranges, were first established by India's erstwhile British rulers who wished to escape the summers of the subtropical plains. With the decline of the British empire, the popularity of these hill stations declined, only to be discovered decades later, when Indians found them an ideal location to flock to in order to escape the scorching summers of the plains.
The hill stations of India are now a popular destination for not just those looking for cooler climes in summertime, but also avid skiers, pilgrims, and cultural tourists. These hill stations are spread over almost the entire Himalayan ranges, starting from the Himachal Pradesh and Uttaranchal hill stations like Manali, Mussoorie and Nainital, and going on to North Bengal's Darjeeling. Beyond Darjeeling, to the east, are the east Himalayan hill stations of Kalimpong (West Bengal) and Gangtok (Sikkim). Western India has the twin hill stations of Khandala and Lonavala, close to Pune city in Maharashtra. Mount Abu, in the Aravalli Hills, towers above the deserts of Rajasthan. South India's Nilgiri Hills and Western Ghats are home to the popular hill stations of Ooty and Kodaikanal.
All the popular hill stations in India have one thing in common, their pleasant climate and lush forests. They offer sights ranging from snow-capped peaks to gushing waterfalls and crystal clear lakes. The hill stations are well connected to the other towns and cities of India by air, road and rail.