77-km from Shimla and 35-km from Kalka, at 1,927m, Kasauli is a quaint little town that seems to exist in a time wrap of an era that reminds one of the 19th century. Its colonial ambience is reinforced by cobbled paths, quaint shops, gabled houses with charming facades and scores of neat little gardens and orchards. Mixed forests of chir-pine, Himalayan oak and huge horse chestnuts surround Kasauli. Its narrow road slither up and down the hillsides and offer some magnificent vistas.
Kasauli is one of the small towns developed by the British during the ‘hey day’ of the empire, and reached by a branch road from the Kalka-Shimla road. The quite beautiful hill-station of Kasauli has a Pastur Institute that produces the anti-rabies vaccine against mad dog-bite and, at the same time, treats victims who have fallen prey to the dead disease, Hydrophobia. The institute in Kasauli set up in 1900, is the oldest in India, taking care of pet, police and army dogs as well as their masters.
Side by side another institute produces other vaccines, this is the Central Research Institute affording immunity from Typhoid, small-pox, cholera and snake-bite. The Shimla Hills stand on water – parting between the Sutlej and the Giri, a tributary of the Yamuna.
South of Shimla is the Panchmunda ridge, which is crossed by a railway through a tunnel, the longest in the Kalka-Shimla run at Barog, where a series of fissure to springs occur at its flank. The first ridge above Kalka rises abruptly to pine-clad Kasauli at a height of 1,927m and is joined by a 12-km bridle path. The distance by road, however, from Kalka is 36.5-km.
Monkey Point: The highest point in Kasauli called Monkey point is just 4-km from the Kasauli bus stand. The Monkey Point commands an excellent view of the distant plains of Chandigarh region and the river Satluj, tracing a silvery trail through the scene. A small temple is also situated on the top of the hill, which is dedicated to Lord Hanuman. According to a legend, at the end of Ramayana when Lord Hanuman was returning from the Himalayas after obtaining Sanjivany Booty or the Magical Herb, his foot touched the hill and thus the top of hill is in a foot shape. On a clear and starry night the gorgeous view of Chandigarh can be seen from the Monkey Point.
Sanawar: Just 6-km from Kasauli, Sanawar houses one of the best schools in the country. The Lawrence school is almost one hundred-years-old and a major attraction of the town.
Dharampur: Just 15-km from Kasauli on the National Highway No.22, Dharampur is situated. Amidst the healthy air of the fragrant pines, Dharampur has one of the best hospitals in India for the cure of tuberculosis. It is also connected by Kalka-Shimla railway line.
Sabathu: A little cantonment town has a Gurkha fort built in the early years of the 19th century, situated at an altitude of 1,437m. This cantonment town quartered the British soldiers at the time of British Empire. A diversion road from Dharampur 15-km away leads to the Sabathu town.
Dagshai: Another little cantonment at an altitude of 1,925m just 19-km from Kasauli, it is accessible by a link road, which diverts from Dhrampur. Dagshai is perched on a small hill and comprises of a military public school and numerous military barracks.
HOW TO GET THERE
Air: From Kasauli the nearest airport is Chandigarh. Shimla is nearest airport for Solan.
Rail: Nearest railhead is Kalka in Haryana, which is 40-km from Kasauli and 44-km from Solan. Solan is also connected with narrow gauge railway line from Kalka.
Road: Solan and Kasauli are well connected by road buses, coaches and taxis are also easily available from Chandigarh and Delhi.