Also known as Dev Bhoomi (the Land of Gods), Uttarakhand is one of the jewels of India. Whether you like to trek in jungles and mountains or practice some yoga and meditation, the diversified state of Uttarakhand will surprise you with green landscapes, powerful spiritual vibes and endless possibilities. You might also want to loose yourself in the numerous hill stations, experience river rafting, go for camping, learn to ski or enjoy some wildlife-watching. Either way, Uttarakhand should be on your bucket list.
1. Rishikesh and Haridwar
If you wish to experience two of the most spiritual places of India, Rishikesh and Haridwar are places you shouldn’t miss. Right beside the Ganga, the holiest river in the world, you will sense the spiritual energy.
Rishikesh is often referred as the capital of yoga and it is also a great place to meet other travellers, especially backpackers. You can do meditation and yoga classes or stay in a ashram like the Beatles once did. You might also want to enjoy some water sport like river rafting. Haridwar will be one of the holiest city you will visit in Uttarakhand. Its tranquility and the numerous temples will charm you. Don’t forget to take a bath in the Ganga.
2. Dehradun and Mussoorie
Dehradun is the capital of Uttarakhand while Mussoorie is often referred as “the Queen of the hills stations”. Situated at the Himalayan foothills, both offer scenic views and refreshing moments.
The Forest Research Institute Museum, the Survey of India Museum and the Tapkeshwar Temple are three highlights of Dehradun that you don’t want to miss. In Mussoorie, you will enjoy the walks and the many viewpoints. Gun Hill and Everest House should both be on your list.
3. Nainital and Ranikhet
Nainital and Ranikhet will both amaze you with their majestic views over the mountains. it is one of the favorite hill stations for families and couples with many resorts. It is also a good spot to relax and to appreciate peaceful moments. You will for sure enjoy boat rides on the Naini Lake, the centerpiece of the city.
Ranikhet, the Meadow of the Queen, is the perfect place to go if you feel like trekking and do some camping. It’s also a great spot for fishing and golfing in Uttarakhand. Either way, you will be surrounded by nature.
For a budget friendly place and a great spot to enjoy the mountains of Uttarakhand, Chamoli won’t disappoint you. The valleys and the picturesque views are part of the city’s main sights. The many temples are also worth a visit. The city is also well known for many legends related to Hindu gods and goddesses and for being home of the Chipko Movement, an ecological activist movement protecting the eco-system.
5. The Chardham(Yamunotri, Gangotric and Kedarnath)
Welcome to one of the most impressive destinations of Uttarakhand and also one of the holiest places for Hinduism. Chardham will charm you by its spiritual energy. It is known to be one of the holiest pilgrimage sites of Hinduism where pilgrims believe that their sins are being washed away. The temples are part of the main sights to visit. Of course, you will also be able to enjoy beautiful hills and endless landscapes.
6. Valley of Flowers & Hemkund Sahib
The Valley of Flowers will be one of your best trekking plans during your trip in India. To reach this National Park, you will need a full day hike starting from Govindghat to Ghangaria. It takes around five to seven hours to reach the Valley, but then you will have to stay the night in the small village of Ghangaria before heading back the next day. You can’t afford walking that long or you are traveling with children? Don’t worry, you can also hire a porter. Best time to go is between July and August when most flowers are blooming. After your trek, you can enjoy a stay in Hemkund Sahid, a holy place for Sikhism.
Looking for a quiet destination to enjoy the beauty of nature with family and friends? Put Lansdowne on your list! It’s the perfect holiday family destination in Uttarakhand. You can have some picnics, explore some museums, enjoy walking or simply take some time to appreciate the beauty of the hills around you. You will also feel the British heritage through the architecture of the bungalows and the churches. It gives a genuine unique charm to the city. There’s no place like Lansdowne in Uttarakhand.
One of the most scenic places in Uttarakhand is the beautiful region of Binsar. The views over the Himalayas will make you want to stay longer than you thought. This is the perfect place to enjoy the majestic mountains with panoramic views. Also, you will be happy to know that there is a wildlife sanctuary where you can enjoy birdwatching, spot wild animals and discover many kinds of wild flowers.
9. Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve
If you wish to spot some tigers during your trip in India, Corbett Tiger Reserve of Uttarakhand should be on your list. Named after British hunter Jim Corbett, it is India’s first national park. You can enjoy some safaris and hikes, although it is not guaranteed to spot a tiger. You should go between April to mid-June when the tigers come out of the jungle to get water. It is the best moment to spot them. The park is also home of many other species, such as elephants, peacocks, leopards, crocodiles and more. Corbett Tiger Reserve is the best wildlife-watching destination of Uttarakhand.
Almora will amaze you by its magnificent beauty. Looking for a romantic getaway for your honeymoon in India? This is the place you want to go to. The mountain lovers will also be pleased by the views and the trekking possibilities and backpackers will enjoy the peaceful vibe and the cultural heritages. Not matter what you are looking for, you will find it within this hidden jewels of India. Make a stop to handicrafts stores and don’t forget to taste the delicious cuisine.
India’s premier ski resort, Auli is the perfect getaway for winter sports. No matter if you are an expert at skiing or if you want to try it for first time, you will be pleased by the ski resorts. You can also take courses. Overall, this is your top winter destination in Uttarakhand. Not planning on going during winter? Don’t worry, the magnificent views over the Himalayas will also please you during the summer time.
If you are looking for a peaceful place to go, out of the touristic crowds, you will for sure enjoy Pithoragarh, also known as the little Kashmir. Take time to relax and appreciate the landscapes and the serenity. Step back from the busy cities and make a stop to this beautiful valley, a jewel not too far from Nepal. Don’t forget to visit the monastery, the Kapileshwar Mahadev (cave temple dedicated to Lord Shiva) and of course, the Pithoragarh fort.
Munsiyari is another amazing spot in Uttarakhand for adventurous travelers. The high altitude treks will please the nature lovers and trekkers. Situated beside Nepal’s and Tibet’s borders, Munsiyari offers an experience of its own. If you have the chance to visit this hill station, you also have to make a stop to the Navik Glacier which is the source of Ram Ganga river. It is 40kms away, but you will be happily amazed by its beauty. Bike lovers? You will be happy to know that Munsiyari offers the best bike treks in Uttarakhand.
As you know, Uttarakhand is the home of many hills. Situated at the Himalayan foothills, it is the perfect state to trek and enjoys mountain views. One of the favorite places of trekkers is Chopta because it is the base point of the treks to Tungnath and Chandra still. The nature lover inside of you will be pleased as it is also another great spot to do camping and to enjoy the tranquility of Mother Earth. Be ready to be impressed by the view of the imposing Himalayas.
Another place not to miss for the peace seeker inside of you is Chakrata. Connect with nature, appreciate the moment and once again, step back from the busiest cities. The picturesque views will make you fall in love with the hills of Uttarakhand. Make a stop at the Tiger waterfall, one of the highest waterfalls of India. Fan of adventurous activities? You will be pleased to see all the possibilities of activities in Chakrata, such as trekking, camping, and mountain climbing.