Himachal Pradesh is an amazing destination. The downside is that it is so beautiful that it gets very crowded, especially in the summer season. Starting with the road leading up to Himachal, one sees traffic jams, lines and crowds everywhere. This takes away from the experience and reduces this peaceful summer retreat to a mele in a circus. How does one avoid crowds?
More and more, people are looking to relax during their summer vacation and spend time with loved ones, friends and family members in peace and tranquility. To stay away from the madding crowd and the deafening roar, people have started walking on the road less travelled and seeking space in hidden destinations that are off-beat and less crowded.
Where to go
One such location is Chail. Tucked away in a quiet spot and yet every bit as beautiful and picturesque as the best hill stations of the Himalayas, Chail is a hidden treasure that has somehow been overlooked by the tourist hoards that invade Himachal every summer. Chail has the same elevation as Shimla and is located in the Chamba Valley but gets a fraction of the tourists.
Thanks to a quirk of history, Chail also has some great sites and great infrastructure, just like the famous hill stations of Himachal. Historically speaking, Chail was not created by the British Raj but by an Indian King, The Maharaja of Patiala, in much the same vein. What the Maharaja lacked in power and budget, he made up in style, artistic taste and astonishing attention to detail.
As a result, Chail developed into a small hill station that remained hidden and unknown by many. This played a vital role in protecting this charming hill town and its surrounding greenery and preserving it as a pristine and relatively untouched sanctuary for those in the know. Nowadays, it is a destination for discerning tourists and seasoned travellers and industry insiders.
Chail is ideal for a peaceful retreat in the Himalayas because of its pristine natural beauty, various tourist attractions and relative tranquility. The views from Chail are especially beautiful as one can see lush evergreen forests, majestic mountain peaks and deep blue skies. One can also spot several wild animals in and around Chail that inhabit the Chail Wildlife Sanctuary, a protected nature reserve that houses many rare and beautiful species.
The Wildlife sanctuary in Chail is open-ended and can be visited by anyone at any time. It is a great place to trek and explore and also has many streams, waterfalls, cliffs and ponds. Many people come to Chail to explore the wilderness and study animals and birds that live in this area. The reserve’s undulating and ever-changing landscape forms an interesting playground for naturalists, photographers, trekkers and mountain climbers.
Hidden in the wilderness, there are some interesting temples and tourist attractions that are also worth visiting. Chief amongst them is the Kali Ka Tibba Temple which is located on top of a hill. The hill provides some breathtaking views of the surrounding areas and even contains a plunge pool for pilgrims.
There are also several more recently made landmarks in Chail including its famous Cricket Ground, the Chail Palace and the Chail Military School. The Chail Palace is especially worth visiting as it has a museum with many authentic artefacts and art pieces that tell us about British times and the Maharaja.
Where to stay
If you are visiting Chail for peace, it is best to stay away from the main town. It is also advisable to stay at a property that provides a good view. One of the best resorts in Chail is the Tarika Resort and Spa, which is a well-known and highly reviewed resort for tourists. The best part about this property is that it has Glass Domed Cottages that offer unimpeded views of the beautiful surroundings.
Regardless of if you are visiting Chail with family, friends or with a loved one, the Tarika resort provides the perfect sanctuary from crowds and noise for a rejuvenating and restorative break from city life. Its in-house Spa and amazing food also add to the experience while its location is ideal for exploring Chail. With the help of this resort and its capable staff, you are sure to have a great time here.