Top 10 Off beat Destinations to Visit in Uttarakhand
Uttarakhand, a state in northern India, is home to some of the most beautiful and serene landscapes in the country. From towering snow-capped mountains to serene river valleys, Uttarakhand offers a variety of destinations for travelers seeking a unique and offbeat experience. In this article, we will explore the top 10 offbeat destinations to visit in Uttarakhand.
Chakrata is a picturesque hill station located in the Dehradun district of Uttarakhand. The town is situated at an altitude of 2,118 meters above sea level and is known for its natural beauty, serene environment, and pleasant climate. Chakrata is surrounded by dense forests of oak, rhododendron, and deodar making it a perfect destination for trekking and hiking. The town is also home to several waterfalls and natural springs. The most famous waterfall in Chakrata is the Tiger Falls located at a distance of 5 km from the town. Apart from trekking and hiking, Chakrata also offers other adventure activities like rock climbing, rappelling, and camping.
Chakrata is also home to several ancient temples and shrines, which are of great religious and cultural significance. The most famous temple in Chakrata is the Lakhamandal Temple, which is located at a distance of 35 km from the town. The temple is believed to be around 1000 years old and is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Some more ancient temples in the area are the Hanuman Temple and the Kanasar Devi Temple.
The town of Chakrata has a rich history and is believed to have been established during the British era. The town has a unique charm and offers a glimpse into the colonial past of India. Chakrata can be visited throughout the year, but the best time to visit the town is from March to June and from September to November.
Pithoragarh is a small town located in the Pithoragarh district of Uttarakhand. It is a beautiful town that is blessed with natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and a pleasant climate. It is surrounded by snow-capped Himalayan peaks. The town is situated on the banks of the river Sarayu and is surrounded by dense forests and hills. One of the most popular tourist attractions here is the Pithoragarh Fort. The fort was built by the Chand Rajas in the 14th century and is situated on a hilltop overlooking the town. Another popular tourist attraction is the Askot Wildlife Sanctuary. The sanctuary has several rare and endangered species of animals and birds.
The town of Pithoragarh is also famous for its handicrafts like hand-woven carpets, shawls, and blankets made of wool. It is also a popular destination for adventure enthusiasts. The town is surrounded by several trekking routes, and the famous Pindari Glacier trek starts from here.
The town is also home to several ancient temples, including the Kapileshwar Mahadev Temple, the Thal Kedar Temple, and the Jhulaghat Temple. These temples are visited by thousands of devotees every year.
Auli is a beautiful destination located in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. Auli is a paradise for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts, and it offers a wide range of activities for visitors to enjoy. The town is known for its skiing slopes which offer a thrilling experience, and visitors can enjoy skiing here throughout the year. Apart from skiing, Auli is also famous for its stunning panoramic views of the Himalayan Mountains. Visitors can take a cable car ride from Joshimath to Auli, and enjoy the breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains. Its beautiful meadows are covered with a carpet of beautiful flowers during the summer months. The Kuari Pass Trek is a popular trekking route in Auli, which offers visitors an opportunity to explore the beautiful Himalayan Mountains. The town is also home to several ancient temples, including the Nanda Devi Temple and the Badrinath Temple which are an important part of the town’s cultural heritage.
Auli is also famous for its delicious cuisine, which is a blend of traditional and modern flavors. The local dishes are made using fresh ingredients and traditional cooking methods.
Munsiyari is a paradise for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts, and it offers a wide range of activities for visitors to enjoy. The town is known for its stunning views of the Panchchuli peaks, which are a group of five snow-capped Himalayan Mountains. The town is also home to several beautiful waterfalls, including the Birthi Falls. The town is surrounded by several trekking routes, including the Milam Glacier Trek, the Ralam Glacier Trek, and the Namik Glacier Trek. These treks offer visitors an opportunity to explore the beautiful Himalayan Mountains and the surrounding landscapes.
There are several ancient temples in the town including the Kali Temple and the Nanda Devi Temple. The town is a perfect destination for those who want to indulge in adventure activities, explore the natural wonders of the region, and soak in the local culture. Whether you are a trekking enthusiast, a nature lover, or a history buff, Munsiyari has something to offer for everyone.
Chopta is a charming little town in the lap of the Himalayan Mountains Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand. The town is renowned for its breathtaking vistas of the majestic Himalayas, which are sure to leave visitors in awe. Chopta is also known for its picturesque meadows, which are carpeted with a colorful array of flowers during the summer months. These meadows are a popular spot for camping and picnics, and visitors can bask in the serene atmosphere and soak in the scenic views of the surrounding landscape.
Trekking is a major attraction in Chopta, and the town is surrounded by several trekking routes, each offering its own unique blend of natural beauty and adventure. The Tungnath Temple Trek, the Chandrashila Trek, and the Deoria Tal Trek are some of the popular treks that offer visitors a chance to explore the rugged terrain and marvel at the stunning vistas. Chopta is also home to a wildlife sanctuary. Visitors can take a leisurely walk through the sanctuary and catch a glimpse of the native wildlife in their natural habitat, against the backdrop of the majestic Himalayan Mountains.
The town also boasts of several ancient temples, the most prominent being the Tungnath Temple, which is the highest Shiva temple in the world. With its mesmerizing landscapes, serene atmosphere, and diverse range of activities, Chopta is an ideal destination for those seeking an unforgettable Himalayan experience.
Binsar is a picturesque town located in the Almora district of Uttarakhand. This tranquil town boasts of breathtaking panoramic views of the snow-capped peaks of the Nanda Devi, Panchachuli, and Trishul ranges. Binsar is surrounded by a dense forest, which is home to a variety of wildlife. The Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, located in the heart of the forest, is a popular spot for wildlife watching. Visitors can spot several species of animals and birds, including leopards, barking deer, Himalayan Black Bears, and Koklass Pheasants, among others.
The Pindari Glacier Trek, the Sunderdhunga Trek, and the Kafni Glacier Trek are some of the popular treks that offer visitors an opportunity to explore the region’s natural beauty. The Binsar Mahadev Temple is an ancient shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva and is a popular pilgrimage site. The temple is located amidst a dense forest, adding to the spiritual and serene atmosphere.
The town’s local cuisine are made from fresh local ingredients. Visitors can savor a variety of local delicacies, including the popular bhaang ki khatai, a tangy chutney made from bhaang seeds, and the authentic Kumaoni thali, a complete meal consisting of several local dishes.
Kausani is a serene hill station located in the Bageshwar district of Uttarakhand. This quaint town is known for its breathtaking views of the Himalayan Mountains, lush green forests, and peaceful atmosphere. Kausani is a popular destination for those seeking a peaceful retreat in the lap of nature. The town offers spectacular views of several snow-capped peaks, including Nanda Devi, Trishul, and Panchachuli, among others. The sunrise and sunset views from Kausani are particularly stunning and are a must-see for anyone visiting the town. The Kausani Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the heart of the forest and is a popular spot for wildlife watching.
The Pindari Glacier Trek, the Sunderdhunga Trek, and the Kafni Glacier Trek are some of the popular treks that offer visitors an opportunity to immerse themselves in nature and soak in the breathtaking views of the Himalayas. Kausani is also famous for its tea gardens, which produce some of the finest tea in India. The tea gardens are located on the slopes of the hills surrounding the town and offer visitors an opportunity to witness the tea-making process and taste some of the finest tea in the country.
The Baijnath Temple is an ancient shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva and is a popular pilgrimage site. The temple’s intricate carvings and stunning architecture are a sight to behold and attract visitors from all over the country. Visitors can savor a variety of local delicacies, including the popular Bal Mithai, a sweet made from khoya and coated with chocolate.
Khirsu is a small village situated in the Pauri Garhwal district of Uttarakhand. This tranquil village is surrounded by thick forests and snow-capped Himalayan peaks. Khirsu is a popular destination for people seeking a serene getaway amidst the bounties of nature. The village is well-known for its breathtaking panoramic vistas of numerous snow-covered peaks, including Trishul, Nanda Devi, Kamet, and Chaukhamba. The forests that encircle the village are home to a wide variety of flora and fauna. The Khirsu Wildlife Sanctuary, located in the heart of the forest, is a popular spot for wildlife enthusiasts.
The Khirsu-Kanak Chauri Trek is a popular route that offers visitors a chance to get up close with nature and enjoy the stunning views of the Himalayas. Khirsu is also well-known for its apple orchards, which produce some of the finest apples in the country. The apple orchards are located on the hillsides surrounding the village.
The Ghandiyal Devta Temple is an ancient shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva and is a significant pilgrimage site. Visitors can indulge in a variety of local delicacies, including the popular Aloo ke Gutke, a dish made from potatoes and local spices.
Lohaghat is a charming small town located in the Champawat district of Uttarakhand. It is situated on the banks of the Lohawati River and surrounded by lush green forests and majestic mountains. The town is famous for its ancient temples and rich cultural heritage. The most famous temple in Lohaghat is the Advaita Ashram, which was founded by Swami Vivekananda. The ashram is offers visitors a chance to immerse themselves in meditation, yoga, and other spiritual practices. Another famous temple in Lohaghat is the Pancheshwar Mahadev Temple, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
Lohaghat is also known for its scenic beauty and numerous trekking trails. The most popular trekking trails in Lohaghat are the Chaumu-Kaphni trek and the Pancheshwar trek. The town also has a rich history and was an important center of the Chand dynasty. The Chand rulers built several magnificent temples and palaces in and around the town, which are now popular tourist attractions. The most famous of these is the Vanasur-Ka-Kila, a fort that was built by the Chand rulers and offers breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.
Lohaghat is also a food lover’s paradise, with a wide range of local delicacies on offer. The town’s cuisine is a blend of traditional Kumaoni and Garhwali flavors and includes dishes such as Bhatt ki Churkani, Kumaoni Raita, and Kafuli. Visitors can also indulge in delicious sweets such as Bal Mithai and Singauri.
Pangot is a small village located in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand. Pangot is a popular destination for birdwatching, and you can spot a variety of birds here, including Himalayan griffon, rufous-bellied woodpecker, and Himalayan bulbul. The best time to visit Pangot for birdwatching is from March to June and from September to November.
Apart from birdwatching, Pangot is also a great destination for trekking and hiking. There are several trekking trails that you can explore, including the Pangot-Mitsy trek and the Pangot-Kilbury trek. These treks take you through beautiful forests and offer stunning views of the surrounding Himalayan range. Pangot is also a great place to relax and unwind. The village has a few homestays and guesthouses where you can stay and enjoy the serene environment. You can also treat yourself with some local cuisine and try out some traditional dishes.
Hence, Uttarakhand offers a variety of offbeat destinations for travelers seeking a unique and authentic experience. Whether you are looking for natural beauty, adventure, or a peaceful environment, Uttarakhand has something for everyone. So, pack your bags and head to these offbeat destinations in Uttarakhand for an unforgettable experience.