Welcome to Chail
Forty to 55km south of Shimla (depending which road you take), Chail village became the summer retreat of the larger-than-life Maharaja of Patiala after, legend has it, he was banished from Shimla for attempting to elope with the viceroy's daughter. His grey-stone palace, built in 1891 in a staid English suburban style, is now a state-run hotel with extensive wooded grounds. With thick pine and cedar forests and moderate temperatures, the area has some nice walks, including through Chail Wildlife Sanctuary up the panoramic hill Kali Ka Tibba, 6km south of the village. Chail is at its most picturesque when under a coating of snow in January and February. It also claims the world's highest cricket ground, on a levelled hilltop 2km southeast of the village centre in the grounds of Rashtriya Military School (vehicles may not be able to approach closer than 1km).