Relaxation, spiritualism or adventure, Uttarakhand is the complete package of beauty, thrill and tranquillity. Even if you do nothing and just feel the atmosphere and sight on the lap of Himalayan Ranges, the experience would only ignite the urge to discover more and more.
Here are some facts for you to know in terms of adventure, cuisines, and some bewildering sights before you plan your trip to the surreal land. It has some or the other special things to offer all throughout the year.
Popular Activities to do
- Trekking to kuari pass- The trek to kuari pass curates a very diverse sight of attractions all on a single path. The various adventurous elements are the thick alpine forest, narrow and tricky paths, steep ranges and deep meadows, rapid streams, silver horizons. Magnificent views of Trishul, Kedarnath, Neelkanth, Nanda Devi etc can be witnessed.
- Camping at Kaudiyala- The serene location is a hamlet in the soothing lap of Himalayan Ranges. The melody of gushing river ganga makes the ambience even more desirable for spending the day as well as nights.
- Rafting from kaudiyala to Rishikesh is an extremely challenging and breath-taking experience, only recommended for a true adventurer.
- Boating in Nainital- breathing the fresh mountain air and photographing the picturesque landscape is an experience in itself at Nainital. Also do not forget to shop the local artisans' creations surrounding the lake.
- Bungee jumping in Rishikesh- Dare to jump from India's most extreme giant swing of 83 meters (272 ft. Jump) in the adventure capital of India, Rishikesh Uttarakhand. It is operated by Jump masters from New Zealand with years of experience in operating these sports.
- Skiing in auli- Recognized as one of the best ski destinations in the world by foreigners. The vast spread of oak and coniferous forests. The best thing is there is arrangement for everyone to engage skiing, the professionals as well as novice.
- Safari at Jim Corbett national parks- Jim Corbett, the oldest national park in India offers an opportunity to live a few hours in the splendid diversity of nature and creature.
- Yoga in ashrams of Rishikesh.- Situated on the bank of river ganges, on the foothill of Himalayan mountains in between colourful gardens. People come for meditation and experience ashram life to witness tranquillity and solace.
- Cable car ride at nainital- The major attraction of nainital offers a breath-taking view of complete nainital hill station, including the lake. The adventurous ride takes 3 minutes to reach the snow view point.
- Paragliding at Ranikhet. The traditional stone house of more than 100 years old, provides the take off point of paragliding overlooking the wide valley floor. And is also safe for beginners.
- Ziplining in Mussoorie. Enjoy travelling through Rope and get the bird eye view of the pristine vegetation, flora and fauna and feel the butterflies in the stomach!
- Rappelling at mukteshwar.- The Chauli-ki-jali cliffs are an excellent location for rock climbing and rappelling. The rocks suitable for such adventures bring a lot of tourists every year to the place.
Asia's longest flying fox can be experienced at Rishikesh. Designed by Ron Catson of New Zealand the length is full 1 km. One can feel the gushing air at a speed of 160 km/hr.
Famous sights to visit
- Evening aarti of Haridwar- The sight of priests holding large fire bowls, ringing bells, chanting of mantras, floating diyas with flowers, and their reflecting shadow in ganga are explainable. And a first-hand experience of participating is enchanting.
- Tea estate view at kausani,- Situated at an elevation of 1800 metres, covers an area of 208 hectares. The flavourful "Griha's tea'' is made from tea leaves of Kausani tea estate which is exported to Australia, Germany, U.S and Korea.
- sahastradhara waterfall- One of amazing spots of Dehradun, a natural sulphur water spring with great medicinal properties known to cure the worst skin diseases. The surrounding caves and dancing view further enhances the sight.
- The valley of flowers national park- The UNESCO world heritage site, known for its outstanding view of beautiful landscape. Home to a range of endangered species, the site remains protected due to remoteness and limited access.
- Almora view point- At Zero Point, the cottony floating clouds, snow-capped peaks and the lush green valley is a sight to die for! The place is also famous for its rich cultural heritage, unique handicrafts and delicious cuisine.
- chardham (Badrinath, Kedarnath, Yamunotri and Gangotri)-Most popular pilgrimage centre in northern India. Each site is devoted to a specific deity and the journey needs physical as well as mental strength due to the difficult journey.
- snowfall of Dhanaulti- Located on foothills of garhwal Himalayan Range, one of the top destinations in the country to experience snowfall. The hilly region looks like heaven during December and January( probably now).
- Sattal (group of 7 lakes)- In the outskirts of Nainital this group of tranquil lakes surrounded by dense oak and pine forests, provides an unforgettable ambience that can only be felt.
- Ramgarh fruit bowl of kumaon- The secluded hill station in Kumaon, known for its fruits and orchards of apricot, plum, peach. Writers and thinkers visit the place too often to refresh.
- The world famous Kumbh mela/Ardh Kumbh mela is held at Haridwar every twelfth/sixth interval. Participating in this is considered a huge privilege according to Hindu beliefs.
Delicious cuisines to taste
- Kafuli- The thick gravy preparation, also known as Dhapdi in Garhwal. Made of green leafy vegetables is a popular side dish in Uttarakhand also paired with steamed rice, chapati or parathas.
- Jhangora ki kheer- It is prepared from a local barnyard millet - Jhangora. Typically served as desert. Rich in Magnesium, folate, Vitamin A,C,K and other nutrients as well.
- Thhatwani- A highly appetizing and nutritious dish. Made in Iron kadai, already rich in protein due to Uttarakhandi pulses. Best served with steamed hot rice and Bhang ki chutney.
- Kumaoni Raita- Made with yoghurt, cucumber, split mustard seeds with some spices. The north indian raita is full of spices and tangy in flavour from Kumaoni's kitchen is a must-taste in Uttarakhand.
- Arsa- Famous in garhwal and kumaon can be stored for a long time. And can also be served as a snack. One of the savoured sweet dishes in Uttarakhand.
- Bhang ki chutney- A signature recipe of Uttarakhand cuisine, made from Bhang seeds, green chillies, lemon juice and mint leaves. It is served with almost every food and is most popular in the Kumaon region.
Local Languages spoken
Apart from Hindi, the pahadi languages, Gardwali, Kumaoni, Jaonsari is spoken. There are a lot of Dialects of Garhwali, very different from each other, unlike Jaonsari which does not differ much in Dialects. Most of the local languages belong to Indo Aryan group of Languages. They’re spoken languages were passed from generation to generation. However the people speaking these have lessened considerably and some steps should be taken by the government to preserve these languages.
In history, parts of the state have been mentioned as a part of kuru and panchal kingdoms(mahajanapadas) during Vedic age. Gadhwal and Kumaon have been recognized as part of Kedarkhand and Manaskhand in hindu mythology. Also believed that the epic Mahabharata was composed in Uttarakhand by a famous sage vyasa.
The pauravas, Kushanas, kunindas, Guptas,Katyuris, Palas, the Chands, Parmars, Shahs and British are said to be ruled in turns. Known as Devbhumi, "the land of gods'' due to multiple pilgrimage spots.
Sonu Nigam, One of the most popular singers from Bollywood is from Uttarakhand. Nawazuddin Siddiqui the great actor of Bollywood spent most of his childhood days there, graduated from Gurukul Kangri Vishwavidyalaya, Haridwar. The famous Indian playback singer Neha Kakkar was born in Haridwar, and lived there before moving to Delhi.
Raghav Juyal the Dance India Dance finalist, Choreographer, actor, host was also born and brought up in Dehradun, Uttarakhand in a Garhwali family. The voice India winner and Indian Idol 12 contestant, Pawandeep Rajan is the "youth brand ambassador of Uttarakhand" and has his hometown in champawat, Uttarakhand.
The Lyricist, screenwriter and CEO of McCann World group India, Prasoon Joshi also spent his childhood in Almora and Dehradun.
Himani Shivpuri and Urvashi Rautela also originally hail from the land of Gods.
The land is blessed with so many amazing tourist places that it's almost impossible to mention or describe all of them at once. However now you know that the magnificent and exotic destinations definitely deserve a space on your 2021 travel checklist.
Also note If you are visiting from outside of India except Nepal, Bhutan, you are advised to carry your valid passport and visa for sure. You can experience the best of the culture and taste of the state by booking your epic stay on Hotel green Palms, verified stay of Mytravaly.com and thereby avail the best price!!