Hill Stations in Uttarakhand
Uttarakhand is primarily a hilly state and is dotted with so many hill stations that one is literally spoilt for choice. In fact it would not be an exaggeration to say that the state is home to some of the most popular hill stations in India. Each hill station in Uttarakhand is unique in its own way – Nainital is popular as the ‘Lake District of India’, Kausani and Mukteshwar are known for the panoramic views of Himalayas; Ranikhet is popular for its fruit orchards; and Mussoorie for its splendid charm. Here is a brief glimpse of major hill stations in Uttarakhand.
Established by the Britishers and popularly known by the sobriquet “Queen of the Hills”, Mussoorie for long was the favoured destination of British officers and Indian royalty. The colonial-era houses still stand and are a nostalgic reminder of the era gone by. Mussoorie is a pleasant getaway for mountain walkers. Mall Road is the most prominent landmark of Mussoorie; it is the very heart of the town and crossing it once or twice every day is inevitable. The other places of tourist interest in Mussoorie are: Gun Hill, Jharipani Falls, Camel’s Back Road and Kempty Falls.
Chakrata is a quaint and beautiful little cantonment located 74 km north of Mussoorie. The place still retains its charm, from the days it was established by the Britishers more than 125 years ago. The town offers magnificent view of the Greater Himalaya and the abundant greenery around is sure to steal your heart.
Lansdowne: If you are looking for the quietest hill station in India, then Lansdowne is the place to be. Located at a distance of about 250 km from Delhi, Lansdowne is a small cantonment town. During the British Raj it was a popular hill station and its winding roads are still lined with colonial bungalows. The major places of tourist interest in Lansdowne are: Bhulla Lake, Tiffin Top and Snow View Point.
Located around the picturesque Naini Lake, Nainital will take your breath away the moment you reach here. Nainital is a honeymooner’s paradise and taking a walk along quaint pine trails in the neighbouring woods is a divine experience. The Naini Lake is in centre of the Nainital and boating and yachting on the lake is a must-do once you are in Nainital. You can also take a walk along the promenade that goes around the entire lake. The other places of tourist interest in Nainital are: Snow View Point, China Peak, Tiffin Top and Governor’s House.
Located 7500 ft above sea level, Mukteshwar is a beautiful and quiet hill getaway. The place offers fabulous views of the snow-capped peaks of the Garhwal, Kumaon and Nepal Himalayas. The other thing which is unique about Mukteshwar is its unpolluted environment, abundant natural beauty and round-the-year coolness.
Located 74 km north of Nainital, Ranikhet is a walker’s paradise. The town is spread along a 15-km ridge that offers one of the most magical views of the Himalayas. The place is also known for its green meadows surrounded by pine and oak forests. Chaubatia Orchards, one of the first British-era hill gardens, are a major tourist attraction of Ranikhet.
Nestled between the rivers Kosi and Gomti, Kausani’s beauty will take your breath away. When Mahatma Gandhi came to Kausani, he immediately fell in love with the place and gave it the title of ‘Switzerland of India’. On a clear day, Kausani offers an uninterrupted view of a 365-km stretch of the Himalaya. The place is also a walker’s and botanist’s delight.