Shimla is a spot free of the pollution like many hill stations in the country and the tourist does not find the extreme commercialization in the belt. Because of all this, it is free of extreme noise and the tourist feels peace in the region. The people of this region do have the modern thoughts but are deeply rooted in the tradition and the rich culture of the belt. One of the main sources of the economy in the region is agriculture and cattle and the majority of the people depend on the indigenous production. Dance, music, religion and culture are the important part of the lives of the people in the region. The dance and music in this region is religion oriented and the tourist enjoys the soothing effect of the music of the belt. The sole reason of playing music in the region is to seek the blessings of the gods and goddesses. The music experts play the traditional music instruments like the ektara and chimta. The Shabu dance is a popular dance in the region apart from the other dances. One definitely finds this place commercialized and popular but there is a deep rooted tradition inside this belt.
The people in Shimla depend on agriculture as a source of their livelihood. Cattle rearing is yet another way of earning a decent livelihood. The people in Shimla live in small huts with slated roofs. Every unit of village has its own shops and other facilities and necessities. There are regular fairs and festivals in these villages. You will find more information about the culture, music, dance, people and religion of Shimla in our related sections.
Music and Dance in Shimla
The style of music and dance in Shimla has not gone through much evolution. People over here still follow the traditional forms of dance & music of Simla. The dance and music of Shimla is basically religion oriented. All festivals are celebrated with traditional music and dance and they are an integral part of any festivity and celebration. The main purpose of indulging in music and dance is to invoke the Gods and seek their blessings. This practice has been prevalent since old days.
The music is dominated with instruments rather than vocals. The main instruments that are used while singing are Flute, Ektara Chimta, Ghariyal, Ghunghroo, etc. Along with these instruments, experienced people sing the traditional songs that are very pleasant to the ears. The major dance forms of Shimla are the Kayang Dance, Bakayang dance, Bnayangchu dance, Jataru Kayang dance, Chohara dance, Shand and Shabu dances and Rasa dance. These dances are exclusive to Shimla and are not practiced anywhere else.
People of Shimla
The people of Shimla are among the warmest and friendliest people of India. They believe in simple living and are content with whatever they have got in life. The lifestyle of Simla people is very down to earth and uncomplicated. They look for happiness in small things rather than search for materialistic pleasures. They are known to be very hospitable and make their guests feel at home.
The people of Shimla are a mix of various tribes and races. There is no particular caste or creed to which they belong. The people of Shimla are proud of their traditions and are fiercely protective about it. Though the place is modern and commercialized, the people have not changed and you can still see them following their traditions and rituals with much devotion and dedication. The natives of Shimla have been influenced by the Tibetan lifestyle, which is evident in the way they live and dress up.
The main economic activity and source of livelihood of the people of Shimla is agriculture. You will find most of the people working in fields or growing apple trees. Other sources of livelihood include animal husbandry, government services and handicrafts like weaving. The houses are built in an Indo-Tibetan style with slanted roofs and slates.
Shimla does not have a particular religion that makes it stand out. Despite an amalgamation of many different religions in Shimla, the major religion in Simla would be Hinduism as elsewhere in India. On your visit to Shimla, you will be surprised to find not just temples but also churches and Buddhist monasteries.
The churches conduct regular services for the Christians who live here. The churches here have been built during the colonial rule as Shimla used to be summer capital of the British.
Most of the native people of Shimla follow a combination of Hinduism and Buddhism. This is because of the proximity with Tibet that has in turn influenced the lifestyle of people in Shimla.
The people living in valleys near Shimla like Spiti and Lahaul are famous sites for Buddhist monasteries. Along with the monasteries, one can find many temples that are dedicated to Lord Shiva and other Hindu Gods.