Uttarakhand, located in the northern part of India, is a state known for its pristine natural beauty and spiritual significance. While popular tourist destinations like Nainital, Mussoorie, and Rishikesh attract a large number of visitors, there are several hidden gems in Uttarakhand that offer a unique and offbeat experience. In this blogpost, we will explore some of these lesser-known but enchanting places that are a treasure trove for nature lovers, adventure enthusiasts, and those seeking solitude amidst nature.
Chopta – The Mini Switzerland of Uttarakhand
Nestled at an altitude of 2,680 meters in the Garhwal region, Chopta is a picturesque hill station that is often referred to as the Mini Switzerland of Uttarakhand. Surrounded by the majestic Himalayan ranges, Chopta offers breathtaking panoramic views of snow-capped peaks, lush green meadows, and dense forests.
Chopta is a paradise for trekkers as it serves as the base for the famous trek to Tungnath, the highest Shiva temple in the world. The trek to Tungnath is a thrilling experience that takes you through beautiful rhododendron forests and offers stunning views of the Himalayas. From Tungnath, you can continue your trek to Chandrashila Peak, which stands at an elevation of 4,000 meters. The view from Chandrashila Peak is truly mesmerizing, with the snow-clad peaks of the Himalayas stretching as far as the eye can see.
Apart from trekking, Chopta also offers opportunities for camping amidst the serene natural surroundings. You can set up your camp in the midst of the meadows and spend a night under the starry sky, surrounded by the tranquility of nature. The peaceful ambiance of Chopta makes it an ideal destination for those seeking solitude and a break from the chaos of city life.
Key highlights of Chopta:
- Breathtaking panoramic views of snow-capped peaks and lush green meadows.
- Base for the famous Tungnath trek, offering a thrilling experience through rhododendron forests.
- Chandrashila Peak trek for mesmerizing views of the Himalayas.
- Camping opportunities amidst serene natural surroundings.
Kanatal – Serene Hill Station Away from the Crowd
Located in the Tehri Garhwal district, Kanatal is a serene hill station situated at an altitude of 2,590 meters. Blessed with pleasant weather, panoramic views, and abundant natural beauty, Kanatal is a perfect destination for those seeking peace and tranquility.
Kanatal is known for its untouched beauty and is relatively less crowded compared to other tourist destinations in Uttarakhand. The area is dotted with apple orchards, dense forests, and picturesque meadows, offering a perfect setting for nature lovers to immerse themselves in the beauty of the surroundings.
Adventure enthusiasts can indulge in various activities in Kanatal, such as camping, trekking, and rappelling. The hilly terrain and lush greenery provide ample opportunities for trekking enthusiasts to explore the region and discover hidden trails. Camping in Kanatal is an experience like no other, with the cool mountain air and the sounds of nature creating a soothing atmosphere.
A visit to the nearby Tehri Dam is a must when in Kanatal. The Tehri Dam is one of the largest dams in Asia and offers a breathtaking view of the surrounding mountains and the pristine blue waters of the Tehri Reservoir. You can also indulge in water sports activities like jet skiing and boating in the reservoir, adding a touch of adventure to your Kanatal experience.
Key highlights of Kanatal:
- Untouched natural beauty with apple orchards, dense forests, and picturesque meadows.
- Less crowded compared to other tourist destinations in Uttarakhand.
- Opportunities for camping, trekking, and rappelling.
- Visit to Tehri Dam for panoramic views and water sports activities.
Abbott Mount – An Offbeat Hill Station
Abbott Mount is a hidden gem tucked away in the Kali Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. This offbeat hill station offers a retreat from the bustling city life and provides a perfect opportunity to immerse yourself in nature’s lap.
Abbott Mount is known for its colonial-style cottages that exude old-world charm. The cottages are surrounded by lush green surroundings and offer magnificent views of the snow-covered peaks. The peaceful ambiance and tranquility of Abbott Mount make it an ideal destination for those seeking a break from the chaos of daily life.
One of the highlights of Abbott Mount is the abundance of walking trails that allow you to explore the scenic beauty of the region. You can take leisurely walks through the forested paths, enjoying the fresh mountain air and the sounds of chirping birds. The area is also a paradise for bird-watchers, with a wide variety of bird species calling Abbott Mount their home.
For those looking to relax and rejuvenate, Abbott Mount offers the perfect setting. You can unwind amidst the serene ambiance, surrounded by nature’s beauty. The hill station also provides opportunities for meditation and yoga retreats, allowing you to reconnect with your inner self.
* Key highlights of Abbott Mount:
* Colonial-style cottages surrounded by lush green surroundings and snow-covered peaks.
* Abundance of walking trails for exploring the scenic beauty.
* Paradise for bird-watchers with a variety of bird species.
* Opportunities for relaxation, meditation, and yoga retreats.
Pithoragarh – Gateway to the Himalayas
Situated in the easternmost part of Uttarakhand, Pithoragarh is often referred to as the Little Kashmir. It serves as the gateway to the mighty Himalayas and is surrounded by snow-clad peaks, dense forests, and gushing rivers.
The town is known for its cultural heritage, ancient temples, and the Pithoragarh Fort, which offers a panoramic view of the Himalayan ranges. The nearby Askot Wildlife Sanctuary is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers, with its diverse range of flora and fauna.
Pithoragarh is also a base for various treks, including the famous Kailash-Mansarovar Yatra. The trek to Kailash-Mansarovar is a holy pilgrimage for Hindus and offers a unique spiritual experience. The rugged terrain, pristine lakes, and snow-covered mountains make this trek a challenging yet rewarding adventure.
For nature lovers, Pithoragarh offers opportunities for camping, bird-watching, and nature walks. The region is home to a wide variety of bird species, making it a paradise for bird enthusiasts. You can also visit the nearby glaciers, such as the Milam Glacier, which offers breathtaking views of the Himalayas.
* Key highlights of Pithoragarh:
* Cultural heritage, ancient temples, and panoramic views from Pithoragarh Fort.
* Askot Wildlife Sanctuary with diverse flora and fauna.
* Base for the famous Kailash-Mansarovar Yatra.
* Opportunities for camping, bird-watching, and nature walks.
Munsiyari – A Paradise for Adventure Seekers
Munsiyari, located in the Pithoragarh district, is a hidden gem that offers breathtaking views of the snow-covered peaks of the Himalayas. It is the base for several treks, including the famous Milam Glacier Trek and Nanda Devi Trek.
Adventure enthusiasts can indulge in activities like skiing, mountaineering, and river rafting in Munsiyari. The rugged terrain and challenging trails make it a paradise for thrill-seekers. The region is also known for its unique flora and fauna, with several rare species found in the area.
Apart from adventure sports, Munsiyari also offers opportunities for nature walks and bird-watching. The region is home to a wide variety of bird species, making it a haven for bird enthusiasts. The tranquil surroundings and panoramic views of the Himalayas make Munsiyari an ideal destination for those seeking a peaceful retreat amidst nature’s beauty.
* Key highlights of Munsiyari:
* Breathtaking views of snow-covered peaks of the Himalayas.
* Base for treks like Milam Glacier Trek and Nanda Devi Trek.
* Opportunities for skiing, mountaineering, and river rafting.
* Nature walks and bird-watching in the tranquil surroundings.
Chaukori – Spect
1. What are some hidden gems in Uttarakhand?
– Chopta, Kanatal, Abbott Mount, and Pithoragarh are some hidden gems in Uttarakhand.
2. What is Chopta known for?
– Chopta is known as the Mini Switzerland of Uttarakhand and offers breathtaking panoramic views of snow-capped peaks. It is also the base for the famous trek to Tungnath, the highest Shiva temple in the world.
3. What activities can be done in Kanatal?
– In Kanatal, you can indulge in activities like camping, trekking, rappelling, and water sports at the Tehri Dam. It is also a perfect destination for nature lovers with its apple orchards, dense forests, and picturesque meadows.
4. What is special about Abbott Mount?
– Abbott Mount is known for its colonial-style cottages, abundance of walking trails, and tranquility. It offers magnificent views of snow-covered peaks and is a paradise for bird-watchers. It also provides opportunities for relaxation, meditation, and yoga retreats.”