Quieter than most popular hill stations of India, Pachmarhi in Madhya Pradesh is not for those who cannot do without crowds, noisy restaurants and plenty of shopping. Here nature takes precedence. Go for walks among sweet scented hilly paths, catch glimpses of birds among the trees, sit by a rock pool or watch silver cascades flow down the verdant slopes. The forests around Pachmarhi are part of the Satpura National Park. In 2009, Pachmarhi and its surrounding forests were designated as a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO, largely due to its importance as a transition zone between eastern and western India forests.
If you cannot do without some company, then choose a place to stay near the central market. Otherwise, choose a retreat in the town’s outskirts where there is hardly any disturbance.
Perched at 1,100 meter, Pachmarhi, like most hill stations in India, was built by the British. The credit of discovering this once pristine forested hills in the heart of central India goes to Captain James Forsyth. It is said that he first came across this place while travelling from Jabalpur to Jhansi in 1857. Forsyth extensively toured through the Central Provinces of India between 1852 and 1864 and would often return to ‘Puchmurhee’ to escape the summer heat of the plains. The trail that he followed through the tiger forests of central India is now known as Forsyth’s Trail. The point from where he first caught a glimpse of the hills is known as Forsyth’s Point (Priyadarshini Point).