The nearest broad gauge head is at Kalka - an unimpressive journey of about 6 hours from Delhi. After that, take a toy train from Kalka to Summer Hill. The view is stunning, with the line passing through an amazing 103 tunnels. The fastest way to get to Kalka is to catch the Shatabdi Express, which departs early morning from the New Delhi Railway Station, arriving four-and-a-half hours later. You can also choose to get off at Chandigarh (en-route to Kalka), and catch a taxi from there.
Schedule of trains from Kalka to Shimla
Schedule of flights to Shimla and Chandigarh
Flight no. Departure Arrival Days
JA 221 DEL 7.30AM
SLV 8.30AM Mo,We,Fr
IC 864 DEL 1.20PM
IC 864 BOM 10AM
OL 103 BOM 2.40PM
DN 537 DEL 12.50PM
9W 733 DEL 1.05PM
JA 211 DEL 7AM
JA 212 DHM 10.10AM
DN 538 IXJ 3.25 PM
IXC 4.30 PM
Shimla has its own airport at Jubbarhatti (IATA code:SLV) that accommodates turbo-props Dorniers, while Jet, Airbus A310, 320s and Boeing 737s can all land at the larger Chandigarh (IATA code:IXC) airport. Commercial service at the Jubbarhatti Airport is limited with six flights a week operating to and from Delhi, all operated by Jagson Airlines. Chandigarh offers far better options. Major airlines including Indian, Jet Airways and Air Deccan operate flights to Delhi, Jammu, and Mumbai. Most of the flights to Mumbai require a stop-over in Delhi, but low-cost Indus Air operates a daily non-stop flight in the afternoons. Kullu and Dharamsala are smaller towns which are connected to Chandigarh through Jagson Airlines' bi-weekly flights. Tip, confirm the flights till the very last moment, bad weather often delays flights during the winter fog.
After landing at the airport, take a pre-paid taxi to minimize hassle. Chandigarh is a good four-hour drive away, so stop for a bite on the Kalka-Shimla highway.
A taxi from Kalka costs approximately Rs 1100 and takes about three hours. There is a pre-paid taxi stand just outside Platform 1 of the railway station.
If you are driving from Delhi, head north on NH 1 to Ambala, bypassing Panipat and Karnal. At Ambala, turn and drive along NH 22 all the way upto Shimla, bypassing Chandigarh. En-route halts are not a problem since Haryana Tourism has many highway motels on NH 1. Most have a restaurant, bar, phone booth and clean toilets. Among the better options are the Oasis Complex near Karnal and the Kingfisher at Ambala.
Even though it's highway driving all through, caution must be exercised since the road can get quite crowded. This is especially the case during summer, when hundreds of Delhiites choose to flock to Shimla for a cool vacation.