Sunny days delight tourists in Himachal Pradesh

Shimla, Dec 31 (IANS) A bright sunny weather may greet the New Year’s Day, much to the delight of tourists flocking the hill state for the celebrations, the Met Office here said on Thursday.

Members of the hospitality industry say it is not just snow but also the sunshine that is attracting the tourists to the state.

“Our guests are also excited to enjoy the sun in Shimla, which has largely been fogged out in the plains these days,” D.P. Bhatia of Clarke’s Hotel told IANS.

He said those who are eager to say goodbye to 2015 in snowy surroundings may travel to Kufri, the honeymooners’ paradise located some 13 km from the state capital.

According to weather office, it might snow and rain across the state from January 3 to 5.

The popular tourist resort town of Narkanda, some 65 km from here, and Manali have good accumulation of snow, whereas Shimla, known for the imperial grandeur of buildings that were once institutions of power when it was the summer capital of the British India, is totally bereft of snow this year.

A Met official told IANS that popular tourist destinations like Shimla, Kasauli, Narkanda, Dharamsala, Palampur, Manali, Chamba and Dalhousie have been experiencing long sunny days for almost a week.

Even the minimum and maximum temperatures are slightly higher than the season’s average due to prevailing dry weather.

According to the weather office, western disturbances will be active again in the region after January 3, resulting in more snowfall and rains.

The minimum temperature in Shimla on Thursday was 6 degrees Celsius, three notches above the average.

Keylong, the headquarters of Lahaul-Spiti, was coldest in the state with a low of 8.7 degrees Celsius below the freezing point, while it was minus two degrees at Kalpa, minus 0.4 degree in Manali, 7.2 degrees at Dharamsala and seven degrees Celsius in Dalhousie.

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