Hospitality industry representatives say the onset of monsoon in the hills and delay in the plains would definitely draw more holiday-makers from the plains. The tourist arrivals in Himachal Pradesh have already surpassed the state's population of about 6.8 million. (Agencies)
"Normally the monsoon arrives here (in the hill state) well in advance compared to the plains. But this time there is still uncertainly about its arrival in the plains. The coming weeks hopefully will do brisk business," Vijay Sharma, deputy general manager of state-run Hotel Holiday Home in Shimla, said.
"If the monsoon remains erratic in the plains, we are expecting a good rush even in July," Sharma added.
Shimla and its nearby destinations like Kufri, Chail, Narkanda, Dharamsala and Palampur in Kangra district, Sangla and Chitkul in Kinnaur district and the entire Kullu-Manali region are chock-full with tourists, say officials of the state tourism department.
"An overcast sky, off-and-on drizzle and aroma of chill perk up one's insipid spirits," Riya Sharma, a tourist from Mumbai, remarked while enjoying the cool climes of Shimla. Her husband Sukrit said the romance of passing above the clouds and venturing into them was memorable.
Manmohan Singh, director of the Shimla meteorological office, said that monsoon hit the state on July first.
Though the monsoon was delayed by three-four days the state has been experiencing moderate to heavy rains since its onset, he said. Shimla, popularly known as Queen of Hills, experienced 95 mm rain, the highest in the state, on Wednesday.
Most of the prominent tourist destinations like Dharamsala, Palampur, Manali, Kasauli, Kufri, Narkanda, Chamba and Dalhousie witnessed rainfall, bringing down temperatures to comfortable levels, the Met Office director said.
Hotelier MC Thakur, who is based in Manali, said the delay in the arrival of monsoon in the plains has spiked the business of hoteliers and travel agencies.
Higher reaches in the Kullu-Manali region, including the Pir Panjal, Brighu, Chaderkhani and Hampta, have already been experiencing night temperature close to sub-zero.
A few tips for the tourists travelling to the hills during the rainy season:
Hospitality industry representatives say the onset of monsoon in the hills and delay in the plains would definitely draw more holiday-makers from the plains.
The tourist arrivals in Himachal Pradesh have already surpassed the state's population of about 6.8 million.