By Uditi Gupta
When you think of Gujarat, especially during the summer, immediately the thought of sweltering heat lingers in the mind. However, what if we tell you to put aside these inhibitions and imagine lofty hills with cotton clouds haloing above? Or, how about a cool pleasant wind blowing your hair, as you look down upon lush green slopes? In other words, how about the hill stations in Gujarat? On that note, let’s explore some of the hill stations of this state.
Bordering Maharastra, the pleasant climate and inviting scenery of Saputara Hills are untouched by the massive commercialization. This makes Saputara more endearing than ever. Tourist attractions abound at Saputara. If you are a nature lover make your way to the Sunrise Point. The friendly sun emerges glowing over the horizon bathing the scenery in a golden glow. And of course, there is a Sunset Point too from where you can wave a goodbye to the orange ball of fire as its dips into infinity.
While in this hill station, do visit the Saputara lake. A walk along the banks of this lake can be relaxing. You can try boating or paddling on the lake. While at it, do not miss the Lake Garden, where you can get great views of the surroundings. The Rose Garden with its bright hues and the step garden built on the slope (in forms of steps) are good distractions. Pushpak ropeway, with its brightly colored cable cars trudging along in the sky, offers splendid views of the valley. Saputara is one of the rare hill stations which has preserved the adivasi culture and that can be seen at large at the artist village, which is a showcase of the tribal arts. There is something for animal lovers, bird watchers and trekkers too, visit the Vansda National Park and the Purna Sanctuary, you will definitely love them.
Nearest Railhead: Waghai railway station (50 km away)
Very close to Surat and named after Lord Wilson, the British governor of Mumbai, the Wilson hills are situated near the Pangarbari Wildlife Sanctuary. Surrounded by thick forests, this hill station is extremely pristine. This hill station too has a number of points. Not just the views from the points, but a view from essentially anywhere on this hilly abode will leave you mesmerized. However, the best feature of Wilson Hill station is: views of the Arabian Sea. A rare feat achieved by very few hill stations, the sight of the calm sea is a unique experience.
Near Dharmapur, Wilson hill station is also close to a number of waterfalls. The one to really watch out for is the Shankar Waterfalls. Plummeting in two parallel straight jets of high-speed frothy white, this waterfall will have your heart in your mouth the moment you set your eyes on it. Bilpudi waterfalls in Dharmapur should not be missed when you enjoying your time out in Wilson Hills.
Nearest railhead: Valsad railway station (60 km away)
And the finale belongs to the Don. The Don hills, named after Dronacharya, are situated close to Ahwa and the Saputara hills. Don hill station is gaining publicity and appreciation for its pleasant climate and scenic landscape. Don is irresistible for nature and biodiversity lovers. With minimal construction and human intervention, when compared to the other hill stations, Don beckons the raw nature lovers. New roads built in the area have made the hill station easy to access. Go catch a glimpse of it in its virgin form and interact with the simple people of Don Village to understand its history and heritage.
Nearest railhead: Kevdi railway station (130 km away)
Gujarat has a lot to offer in terms of tourism and its hill stations are one such excuse for paying it a visit. So, do not wait any more, quickly pack your bags and explore these amazing hill stations in one of the most versatile topography and landscape state called Gujarat.