Nestled in the lush green Kumaon hills of Uttarakhand, Almora is a scenic hill station that offers a perfect blend of natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and spiritual sanctity. Known as the ‘Cultural Capital of Kumaon’, Almora boasts of spectacular mountain views, ancient temples, quaint villages, local handicrafts, and mouth-watering cuisine.

Whether you are looking for a peaceful retreat in the lap of nature, a spiritual journey, or an adventurous holiday, Almora has something for everyone. This comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know to plan your perfect trip to this charming hill town.

How to Reach Almora

By Air

The nearest airport is Pantnagar Airport located about 125 km from Almora. It is well connected to Delhi and Dehradun. From Pantnagar, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to Almora.

By Rail

The nearest railway station is at Kathgodam, about 85 km from Almora. Regular trains connect Kathgodam to major cities like Delhi, Dehradun, Lucknow and Kolkata. From Kathgodam railway station, you can take a taxi or bus to reach Almora.

By Road

Almora is well connected by road to major cities in North India. There are regular buses plying to Almora from Delhi (375 km), Dehradun (235 km), Haridwar (260 km), and Nainital (65 km). The roads are generally in good condition which makes driving to Almora a pleasant experience.

Best Time to Visit Almora

Almora enjoys a pleasant climate throughout the year but the ideal time to visit is between March – June (summer) and September – November (autumn).

Summer (March to June)

Summers in Almora are mild and pleasant with temperatures ranging from 15°C to 30°C. Sightseeing is most enjoyable during this season.

Monsoon (July to August)

The monsoon brings heavy rainfall to Almora. Though the hills look even more lush and scenic during the rains, landslides can hamper travel.

Autumn (September to November)

This is arguably the best time to visit Almora when the rains subside and the hills are covered in bright foliage. The pleasant weather and clear views make it perfect for trekking.

Winter (December to February)

Winters can get quite cold in Almora with temperatures dipping below freezing point. However, those who can bear the chill will be rewarded with snowfall and fewer tourists. The winter festival of Ganga Dussehra is celebrated on a grand scale during this season.

Top Things to do in Almora

Almora offers a number of interesting activities to engage travelers of all interests. Here are some of the top things to do during your visit:

Explore Ancient Temples

Almora abounds in ancient temples dating back to the Chand dynasty. Soak in the spiritual ambience and admire the intricate stone carvings at places like Nanda Devi Temple, Kasar Devi, Jageshwar, and Katarmal Sun Temple.

Shop for Handicrafts

Almora is renowned for its handicrafts, especially the woven woolen items. Check out the local bazaars to pick shawls, caps, carpets and other knick-knacks as souvenirs.

Hike to Zero Point

Be rewarded with a breathtaking view of the Himalayan peaks from Zero Point. The easy 4 km hike passes through dense deodar and pine forests.


Spend some time volunteering at local NGOs and schools to interact with the Kumaoni people and understand their culture closely. Teaching basic English or computer skills can be especially rewarding.

Mountain Biking

The hill trails and dirt tracks around Almora provide the perfect terrain for mountain biking. Rent a bike and explore the pastoral countryside for an adventurous holiday.


Pitch a tent under the stars at one of the campsites near Almora. Kali River is a great spot for a rustic camping experience amidst nature.


With over 200 species of birds, Almora is a bird watcher’s paradise. Spot vibrant Himalayan species like monal pheasant, khaaj pheasant and koklass pheasant.

Ayurvedic Spa Treatments

Rejuvenate yourself with traditional Ayurvedic therapies involving herbal oils, massages and steam baths. Kasaar Jungle Resort offers authentic Ayurvedic treatments.

Best Places to Visit in Almora

Here are some of the must-visit attractions in and around Almora:

Bright End Corner

Perched at the edge of a mountain ridge, this vantage point offers panoramic views of the Himalayan peaks at sunrise and sunset. The place has historical significance as Swami Vivekananda meditated here.

Jageshwar Temple Complex

Located about 34 km from Almora, this complex contains over 100 ancient temples dedicated to Lord Shiva, some dating back to the 7th century CE. The intricate stone carvings are true architectural marvels.

Kasar Devi Temple

Built in the 2nd century CE, this ancient temple is set amidst deodar forests offering tranquil surroundings. It is said Swami Vivekananda meditated here and gained spiritual enlightenment.

Chitai Golu Temple

Dedicated to Golu Devta, the god of justice, this temple is located 8 km from the main town. Local legend says Golu Devta metes out instant justice to people’s problems when prayed sincerely.

Katarmal Sun Temple

Constructed in the 9th century CE, this unique temple is dedicated to the Sun God and the second most important sun temple after Konark. The intricate carvings and pinnacle atop the temple are noteworthy.

Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary

Home to over 200 species of birds and wild animals like leopard, bear and deer, this sprawling sanctuary located 33 km from Almora offers excellent hiking and birding opportunities.

Deer Park

Visit the Deer Park 3 km from Almora town to spot barking deer in their natural habitat. The lush park with oak, pine, and rhododendron trees also offers scenic views.

Govind Vallabh Pant Public Museum

This interesting museum near the bus stand displays historic artifacts shedding light on the region’s art, culture and heritage. Don’t miss the section on the freedom movement.


The tranquil wooded surroundings dotted with shrines and ashrams at Kalimath village attract spiritual seekers. The Beatles visited the Mahavatar Babaji’s cave here in the 1960s.

Best Foods and Restaurants in Almora

From piping hot momos to spicy curries, Almora offers a variety of delicious cuisine. Kumaoni food is a must-try during your visit. Here are some recommendations:

  • Niranjani Restaurant – Their Kumaoni thali with traditional dishes like Kaapa, Bhaat, Aaloo Ke Gutke is simply outstanding. End your meal with delicious singori (sweet wrapped in oak leaves).
  • Glory Restaurant – Known for excellent Indian and Chinese fare. Try the palak paneer, fried rice and sizzlers.
  • Annpurna Restaurant – Modest eatery serving fresh Kumaoni dishes like Dubuk, Sisunak Saag, Gahat Ki Dal at reasonable rates.
  • New Soni Restaurant – Top choice for South Indian dishes like masala dosa, uttapam, vada and great coffee.
  • Sher-E-Punjab – For authentic Punjabi cuisine like chole bhature, parathas, sarson ka saag, makke di roti and lassi.
  • Emily’s Bakery – Pick up freshly baked pastries, cookies, doughnuts to munch on the go. Try their fruit cream rolls.

Don’t miss picking Kumaoni sweets like bal mithai, singori, malai ladoo, and chocolate from the confectioners near the Mall road to take home.

Best Places to Stay in Almora

Almora offers a good range of accommodation options for all budgets:


KMVN Tourist Rest House, Hotel Bhimtal, Blessings Hotel Annpurna offer clean, basic rooms under ₹2000 per night.


Hotel Shikhar, Hotel Hill Queen provide nice rooms with amenities like free breakfast and WiFi at approx ₹4000 per night.


For premium amenities like a spa, restaurant, and valley views choose places like Hotel Grand Oak Manor, The Binsar Retreat priced over ₹8000 per

How to Get Around in Almora

Almora town is best explored on foot. Most key attractions are located within 2-3 km from each other. However, for venturing further out, here are some tips:

  • By Walk – The best way to explore the narrow lanes of the town center and bazars is on foot. Walking also allows you to set your own pace and observe details.
  • By Bicycle – Many hotels rent out bicycles. Cycling around is an easy way to cover more ground and enjoy the natural scenery.
  • By Taxi – Hire a taxi from your hotel or the taxi stand to visit attractions on the outskirts like Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, Jageshwar, etc. Agree on rates beforehand.
  • By Bus – Local buses connect Almora town to other places in Kumaon like Ranikhet, Dwarahat, Chitai, etc. Frequency may be limited, so plan schedule ahead.
  • By Car – Rent a car and self drive around the region if you want flexibility. The route from Almora – Kasar Devi – Binsar – Jageshwar covering main attractions is highly recommended.

Weekend Getaway Options from Almora

Here are some great places that can be visited on weekends from Almora:

Nainital (65 km, 1.5 hours away)

The picturesque lake town of Nainital makes for an ideal weekend getaway. Enjoy boating on Naini Lake, scenic trek to China Peak and shopping at Mall Road.

Ranikhet (70 km, 2 hours away)

The quiet cantonment hill station of Ranikhet offers majestic views of the Himalayas. Visit Jhula Devi temple, golf course, KRC museum, Chaubatia orchards and go for nature walks.

Mukteshwar (70 km, 2.5 hours away)

The pristine hamlet of Mukteshwar is perfect for a relaxed weekend amidst forests. Go for short hikes to view magnificent Himalayan vistas.

Kausani (120 km, 3.5 hours away)

Admire the unmatched 300 km wide panorama of Himalayan peaks from Kausani, known as the ‘Switzerland of India’. Ananda Spa here offers rejuvenating experiences.

Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary (30 km, 1 hour away)

Take an early morning safari into Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary to spot varied Himalayan flora and fauna. Ideal for birdwatching, trekking and getting close to nature.

Tips for Visiting Almora

  • Carry woolens even in summer as temperatures can get cold especially at night
  • Drink only bottled water to avoid getting sick
  • Explore attractions in the morning and evenings when crowds are less
  • For adventure activities, engage guides approved by Uttarakhand Tourism
  • Try to coincide your visit with a major festival for a unique cultural experience
  • Buy woolens directly from the weavers rather than a middleman for authenticity
  • Bargain politely when shopping in the local markets to get good deals
  • Travel with a companion or group for safety as some remote areas may be deserted
  • Carry your own medication and first aid kit as medical facilities are limited
  • Respect local culture and dress modestly when visiting temples and villages
  • Carry spare batteries and powerbanks as electricity supply can be erratic
  • Pre-book accommodations during peak seasons to avoid hassle

Why Visit Almora?

Here are the top reasons that make Almora an outstanding place to visit:

  • Breathtaking Himalayan scenery and lush green forests
  • Ancient hillside temples with exquisite stone carvings
  • Rich repository of Kumaoni art, music, cuisine and culture
  • Tranquil atmosphere ideal for relaxation and spiritual rejuvenation
  • Adventure activities like trekking, camping and mountain biking
  • Diverse wildlife and excellent birding opportunities
  • Colourful festivals that provide insight into local traditions
  • Handicraft shopping – woolens, copperware, wooden artifacts
  • Delicious regional food like Dubuk, Panchmel Dal, Kumaoni Kadhi
  • Warm and welcoming locals eager to share their heritage

So if you are looking to experience the authentic culture and natural beauty of Kumaon region, then a visit to Almora promises to be extremely rewarding!