Solan, located at a height of 1470 m is famous as ‘Mushroom city of India’. It is the 2nd largest city of Himachal after Shimla located on the Shimla Highway, NH22. Solan is surrounded by high peaks and dense forests. Vast mushroom farming and tomato cultivation is done in the area. Solan also has a few big industries. Given its location, it is perfect for a break journey while traveling to Shimla or Kinnaur.
Solan has a lot of historical significance. Legend has it that the cave at the top of Mount Karol is where the Pandavas stayed during their exile, in the epic Mahabharata. During the British Era, the Irish Mutiny of 1920 against the British Army was staged here. Irish soldiers revolted against the British Army but were soon silenced with the killing of two Irish soldiers while many others were imprisoned.
Places To Visit in Solan
Shoolini Mata Temple (2kms, 8 minutes): Visit the Shalooni Devi temple from which the city derives its name. It is the local deity of the region. Every year in June, a fair is held here. Route: via Jaunaji road.
Jatoli Shiv Temple (8kms, 20 minutes): The Shiva temple at Jatoli is located 7kms away on Solan-Rajgarh road.
Mohan Park (2 kms, 6 minutes): Have cobbled paths with benches to relax on. Located on mall road.
Solan Brewery (6kms, 15 minutes): A very old and famous brewery and distillery established in 1855. It is located right on the Shimla highway.
Karol Hill and Gufa (6 kms, 15 minutes): Located near Solan brewery on Karol Tibba at a height of 2130m, this cave is supposed to stretch right upto Pinjore city. One has to trek up a steep slope to reach the top. Prominent temples are – Goddess Kali temple, Lord Hanuman temple and Thakur Mandir.
Central State Library: This 55 year old library established by the British government is situated on the Mall road in Solan. It was inaugurated by Shri Motilal Nehru, the then Education Minister. All school and public libraries in the state are managed by the Central State Library.
Gurkha or Arki Fort: This ancient fort located on an altitude of 4928 ft. is a popular attraction among tourists. The fort was occupied by the Gurkhas in 1815.
Yungdrung Bon Tibetan Monastery (12 kms, 40 minutes): Founded in 1969, it is an active center of Tibetan learning. The monastery has a large statue of its founder, Lord Shenrab Mibo. Sacred Bon dances conducted during New Years Eve attracts a great number of tourists. Take the Solan – Rajgarh road till Ochaghat, the monastery lies 5 kms ahead on the Narag-Sarahan road.
Dr. Yashwant Singh Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry (16kms, 45 minutes): An important Agricultural University with a big campus with many departments and greenhouses used for research. It is located on the Ochaghat-Kalaghat Road.
Gaura (24 kms, 50 minutes): Popular for angling activities in the Giri river which has a bounty of Mahaseer fish. It is located on the Solan-Rajgarh road. Route: Solan-Rajgarh Road-Jatoli-Ochaghat-Nandho-Kalor-Kotla-Gaura.
Rajgarh (40 kms, 50 minutes): A beautiful meadow dotted with orchards. It has some popular picnic spots such as Nacchna and Habban.
Kasauli (25 km, 1 Hour): A charming hill station with colonial architecture. Walk around the mall road, a small market place selling woollens and handicraft items. It’s the perfect destination for nature lovers in search of peace and solitude.
Dagshai (18 kms, 40 minutes.): This is small picturesque town is perched at an altitude of 1925m covered by pine trees. This previously was a British cantonment from 1847. Visit the St. Patricks Church, military public school, military barracks and the Dagshai Heritage Museum which earlier was the Dagshai Central Jail. It is 7kms from Barog. It can be reached via Dharampur or Kumarhatti.
Chail: 37 Kms (1 hour 20 minutes) via Shilli Road and 44 kms (1 hour 15 minutes) via NH 22 –Kandaghat.
Route to Solan
Chandigarh: 67 kms (2 Hours) via NH22.
Shimla: 47 km (1 hour 40 minutes) viaNH22.
Buses and Taxis ply from Chandigarh and Shimla to Solan.
Nearest Railway Station: Solan, on the Kalka-Shimla rail route.
Nearest Airport: Chandigarh (67 kms), Jubbarhatti (53kms).