Location: Shimla District of Himachal Pradesh
Climate: Generally pleasant throughout the year though chilly in winters.
Places to See: Shimla Water Catchment Wildlife Sanctuary, Craignano, etc.
Best Time to Visit: All round the year (except monsoons from July to September)
Mashobra is a small hill town, known for its untouched scenic beauty, in the Shimla district of Himachal Pradesh, India. Mashobra, located about 14 kms from Shimla, is connected to the state capital via the historic Hindustan–Tibet Road built in 1850 by Lord Dalhousie. In conjunction with its amazing surrounds, Mashobra has got an old-world charm amidst ancient buildings, pine and oak trees and apple orchards. At an altitude of 2,149 metres, it is a perfect destination for people seeking solitude.
Mashobra is renowned for serving as a retreat for the President of India once a year. The President pays a visit, generally in summers, wherein his core office shifts to the retreat at Chharabra, in the neighborhood of Mashobra. The building which houses the presidential retreat is a beautiful wooden structure, originally built in 1850. The President stays here just for two weeks and the retreat is mostly used by the Government of India to accommodate foreign VIPs visiting Shimla.
Climate in Mashobra
Mashobra generally experiences pleasant climate all round the year. Summers (mid-March to mid-June) here are quite pleasant with temperature ranging from 8°C to 30°C. While the monsoon season extends from the months of June till September with not so heavy showers, winters approach in October and stays till February. During winters, the climate of Mashobra is quite chilly where the temperature ranges from 0°C to 10°C marked by occasional snowfall. People who love sightseeing and who want to enjoy the place in clear light should prefer going in spring and summer. However, people looking for snow and chill, must visit this place in winters.
Tourist Attractions in Mashobra
Though it is perfect to do nothing and enjoy the serenity of this place, trekking is a great activity to explore this beautiful town. Mashobra is a part of Shimla Water Catchment Wildlife Sanctuary, which has abundance of natural flora like, pine, oak, Himalayan deodar, rhododendron, and horse chestnut. And the fauna consists of monkeys, langurs, jackals, kakkar (barking deer) as well as many bird species like the Himalayan eagle, pheasants, chikor and partridges. It is a great place for nature enthusiasts and photographers.
Excursions from Mashobra
If you want to check out the suburbs, Craignano is a great place to explore just 3 kms from Mashobra. Situated at an altitude of 2,279 metres, Craignano is home to a beautiful rest house which once belonged to an Italian photographer, Chevalier Federico Peliti, who named this place after his native town in Italy. A meandering trail through the forest of pines takes you to beautiful gardens dotted with a variety of flowers, spacious lawns, stone benches and amazing view points. Besides Craignano, one can also visit the famous tourist destinations like Kufri and Chail which are quite close to Mashobra.
Accommodation – Hotels/Resorts in Mashobra
Talking about places to stay in Mashobra, it has quite a few good options. The foremost is, Wildflower Hall at Chharabra, which was once a residence to Lord Kitchener and Lord Ripon during the British Raj in India. Now a property of Oberoi Hotels, it is the best place for a luxurious stay amidst naturally beautiful surrounds. In fact, it is considered among the top hotels of India. Another known resort is Mashobra Spa and Resort which offers beautiful views, along with a comfortable stay. Since Mashobra is still not frequented by crowds like Shimla, you will hardly find local shops and eateries. Most of the hotels have in-house restaurants serving delicacies.
How to Reach Mashobra
Shimla Airport, at Jubarhatti, is the nearest domestic airport to Mashobra. The second closest airport is Chandigarh International Airport which is connected via flights to almost all the major cities of India. Once you reach the airport, you can hire taxis to reach Mashobra.
Shimla is the nearest railway station from Mashobra. However, the major railway station is at Kangra which is connected via regular trains from many cities and towns. You can board buses for Shimla and then again, take buses which ply along the Mashobra route at regular intervals. Otherwise, it is best to hire a direct taxi for a comfortable journey.
Mashobra is well-connected via SH13, and via Circular Road and Dhalli Bypass from Shimla. From Shimla (14kms), one can board buses that play on the route at regular intervals. Or else, you can hire taxis which would drop you at Mashobra.