We use cookies to give you the best possible experience on our site. Click here to find out more. Allow cookies

arrow Register here

Forgotten password?


Day 32: Chandigarh to Shimla

Shimla, India 
click to enlarge 
file size
Aboard the Himalayan Queen on the 59-mile run from Kalka to Shimla.
Michael Palin - HimalayaSomehow, everyone squeezes aboard and, on time at 12.10, the Himalayan Queen pulls out past Kalka signal box, rounds a curve and heads for the hills, passing by a mix of factories and rust-stained housing blocks surrounded by lush sub-tropical vegetation. A lineside tree sways beneath the weight of a family of monkeys the size of small Labradors.

'Langurs,' says the woman opposite me. 'They're the biggest monkeys of all.'

I offer some sweets to her and her family and we start talking. She's a large very jolly lady and her name is Deepti. She works for the ministry of defence in Delhi and is on a week's holiday with her husband and two boys. I ask her if the Britishness of Shimla is still an attraction for Indian tourists.

She frowns and shakes her head.

'They're not so interested in all that, no.'

She reminds me that vital conferences between Ghandi, Nehru and Jinnah aimed at getting the British out of India also took place in Shimla.
Choose another day from Himalaya


  • Series: Himalaya
  • Chapter: Day 32: Chandigarh to Shimla
  • Country/sea: India
  • Place: Kalka
  • Book page no: 72

Bookmarks will keep your place in one or more series. But you'll need to register and/or log in.


  • All trains
  • Day 1 
  • Around the World in 80 Days
  • Day 20 
  • Full Circle
  • Day 21 
  • Pole to Pole

  • Wildlife and Nature
  • Day 22 
  • Around the World in 80 Days
  • Day 7 
  • Full Circle
  • Day 17 
  • Pole to Pole