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Things To Do In Uttarakhand
Uttarakhand is one of the Himalayan states of India. Aside from the stunning natural beauty and panoramic views of the Himalayas, visitors travelling to Uttarkhand will be spoilt for choice when it comes to outdoor adventure sports. The added advantage of having the glacial Ganga River close by is that in the summer it turns into a haven for water sports. In addition, the rocky terrain, dense forestland and rich wildlife make this place ideal for camping, nature walks and trekking. Apart from this, Uttarakhand enjoys a deep-rooted religious history and is home to some of the most revered ancient temples, sites and monasteries in the country. Read below to find out more about the best things to do in Uttarakhand.
Visit the Valley of Flowers National Park
Spread out over a massive 87 sq. km stretch, this UNSECO world heritage site is one of the crown jewels of not just Uttarakhand, but also India. A magical experience, visiting the legendary Valley Of Flowers Nation Park, is arguably the top thing to do in Uttarakhand. It is famed for its seemingly unending fields of alpine florae and rare wildlife. It is located 300 km from Rishikesh and about 500 km from Delhi. The Valley of Flowers will be open to the public from the first week of June till early October. The entry fee amounts to approximately 150 Indian rupees for Indians and 600 for international visitors.
Nanda Devi National Park Trek
Nanda Devi, at a height of 7816 meters, is the second highest mountaintop in the country. The name Nanda Devi is given to the “Bliss Giving Goddess”, and the peak ascends to form a colossal glacial basin, surrounded by elevated mountain peaks that make up the Nanda Devi Sanctuary, nearly 6000 meters above sea-level. This jaw dropping landscape is home to a number of unique treks for visitors. The main treks are not for the faint hearted, but are extremely rewarding. April–June and September–October are the best times to attempt these treks. This national park is also a UNESCO world heritage site.
Rajaji National Park
A famed Indian national park and tiger sanctuary spread through 820 sq. km, it can be found at the feet of the Himalayas. The park boasts of having the highest population of elephants from across the Uttarakhand-based wildlife reserves and is also home to leopards, deer and wild boars. March to April is the ideal time to visit the park as the relatively high temperatures brings all the wildlife out for observation.
Popularly called Naini Lake, it is one of the most significant tourist destination in Naintal. Enclosed by 7 panoramic mountains, it is one of the most romantic places to visit for young couples and families alike. The inspiring natural beauty of this lake has been an inspiration to many poets and writers. Outdoor activities like boating, photography and sightseeing are all possible here.
Visit Har ki Pauri
It is one of the most famous ghats in Uttarakhand, situated by the River Ganga. The Ganga Aarti is a significant religious ceremony that takes place at Har ki Pauri. Visitors and pilgrims immerse diyas and flowers into the river, while priests conduct a prayer ceremony. It is a magical experience to behold and see visitors travelling from far and wide to experience this memorable location and ceremony.
Camping in Rishikesh
This is a fun-filled outdoor group activity for nature lovers and families. It is best enjoyed in the months of September and November. It removes people from their comfort zone and puts them directly in the lap of nature. There are a variety of packages available which include a number of different activities like river rafting, hiking etc. Rishikesh itself is a revered, serene and holy location in the Hindu religion, as the Ganga River flows through it.
Jim Corbett Wildlife Reserve
Formed way back in 1936, Jim Corbett National Park was the first Indian National Park, found in the Nainital region of Uttarakhand. Spread across approximately 520 sq. km it is home to massive variety of wildlife and plants. The park is a visual treat for naturalists and adventurers alike, drawing a massive tourist base on a global scale. One of the first tiger conservation programs in the country originated here and today the park is a coveted place to spot tigers.
Char Dham Pilgrimage
Comprising of the four sacred shrine of Yamunotri, Gangotri, Badrinath and Kedarnath, the Char Dham Yatra is arguably the most religiously significant journey of its kind in India. The four destinations can all be found nearly 3000 meters above sea-level, offering some of the most magical views of the surrounding natural beauty. The best time for this pilgrimage is from April to June, during the summer months. Majority of these destinations are shut to the public during the winter as a result of the extreme weather conditions faced.