Some of the best hill stations in the world serve purposes associated with tourism. This is not very far off from the original reasons they were established hundreds of years ago; during the colonial era. These may be mountain top observation points, or get away resorts for the colonialists to spend time in cooler weather which usually comes with high elevation.
The term “hill stations” is a rather broad term; it could mean an observation point with only two people on it, an entire town with hundreds of residents, or even a resort with thousands of visitors every year. This explains why there are over 120 hill stations serving different purposes across the world.
Top 10 Best Hill Stations in the World 2022
1. The Great Smoky Mountains
The Great Smoky Mountains are a range of mountains in the USA; exactly along the Tennessee –North Carolina border. This mountain range has a hill station by the same name, and is one of the most visited mountain locations in the world; frequented by tourists from all over America and the world.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is located in this mountain range, and it is a great place to see animals like the Northern Flying Squirrel, Red-cockaded Woodpecker, Indiana bat, Black Bears, Snakes, White Tailed Deer, Elk, Raccoons, Salamanders, and Coyotes.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park maintains several structures within the mountain range; which serve to house tourists, exhibits where tourists learn about the various animals in the area, there are also observation decks for tourists, as well as those for scientists.
2. Fairbanks, Alaska
Fairbanks, in Alaska has one of the best hill stations in the world; also with a very high number of visitors every year. The Morris Thomson visitor’s center, located in Fairbanks, Australia is one of the main drivers of traffic to Alaska. The hill station receives a great number of visitors every year.
Some of the popular activities include cruising around the water ways; which is usually included in the list of activities offered by tourism companies. In winter, winter sports are quite popular, as well as more artistic activities such as ice carving.
People also come in to view the northern lights, as well as the Open North American Championship Sled Dog Race, among other activities organized annually.
Shimla is located in India; particularly in the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. Shimla is not just a place for relaxation; it is an actual city with a population of 169,578 people. Shimla has an average altitude of about 2,206 metres. Shimla is an important city in Nothern India in terms of trade, culture, education and tourism.
Shimla is the capital of Winter sports in India; it has a temperature of between −1 and 10 °C in winter, making it perfect for all kinds of winder activities.
Aside from the ice; there is a UNESCO World Heritage Site in the area; as well as several old, antiquated buildings which are of great historical importance.
Thredbo is located in Australia; exactly in New South Wales, Australia. It is a village with a local population of around 477 people, but due to the presence of beautiful snow covered mountainside, attracts around 700,000 visitors in winter, and many more in summer.
Thredbo is a favorite destination for skiing, as well as for hiking, cross-country cycling, rock climbing and fishing. The Thredbo Leisure Centre has been operated since 1987, and now has such attractions like an indoor swimming pool, basketball courts, a gymnasium, wading pool with waterslide, and so on.
The Dalat hill station is located in Vietnam. Its potential as one of the most important places for tourism in Asia has been highlighted by the CNN. It was established in the 1900’s by the French, and there are still many reminders of its colonial past. The city is located 1,500 meters above sea level.
Da Lat has much to offer in terms of natural beauty; there are woodland peaking at the top of the plateau, and running all the way down to the valley below. This is a great spot to see many of the animals including elephants, bears, tigers and leopards, as well as monkeys and squirrels.
Other important attractions to Dalat include; Da Lat Railway Station, The Palace of Bao Dai King, Dalat Cathedral, Prenn Waterfall, Langbiang Peak.
6. St. Moritz
St. Moritz is a town in Switzerland. It is situated at an elevation of about 1,800 meters above sea level, in the Alpine region of Engadine in Switzerland. It has a local population of around 4900 persons, but is a very popular ski town.
St. Moritz welcomes millions of visitors who come in to take part in the many winter activities, chief of which is skiing. Other activities include hiking, snowboarding, ice carving, and so on. There are also the Segantini Museum, the bobsled run, and several ice caves which also serve as tourist attractions.
7. Grand Canyon
The Grand Canyon is located in Arizona, in the United States of America. The Grand Canyon is located at an elevation of around 2600 meters, and is without doubt one of the best hill stations in the world due to its steep sides, natural beauty, and formations carved by water.
The Grand Canyon is a symbol of America; it is one of the best known places in the country, receiving millions of visitors every year.
Darjeelling is located in India; at an elevation of 2,042.2 m. Darjeeling is a town in the Himalayas, and has a population of about 118,805 people while receiving another 500,000 visitors every year. Darjeeling receives a lot of interest; it is also the third most searched site on the internet.
This site was built during the British occupation of India; and has several European styled buildings which now serve purposes of tourism. The railway was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999.
9. Bahrain, Pakistan
Bahrain, Pakistan is not to be confused with the country; known as the Kingdom of Bahrain. This one is a popular hill station, as well as a town with a local population of 102,253. Bahrain means two rivers in the local language; the name comes from the fact that it is on the confluence of the rivers; the Daral and Swat Rivers.
It is known for its riverside tourist resorts, the winging trails, and the local handicrafts.
Pokhara is a metropolitan city in Nepal; which sits on an elevation of 822 meters. This city is an important one; it has a population of 518,452 people; making it the second largest in the country.
This is a year round tourism center; hundreds of thousands of visitors come into the city to take part in all kinds of activities, including hot air ballooning, canoeing, and trekking. There are two five star hotels in the city; and over 300 others as well.
The city also has several historical sites.
The top hill stations in the world attract millions of people every year, and that has led to the development of the tourism industries in those locations. The literal millions of dollars spent on developing these areas; building roads, lodges, and other necessities have facilitated growth, and created thousands of jobs around the world.