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Overview of Uttaranchal
 

Famous For

Corbett Tiger Reserve

Valley of Flowers

Rishikesh yoga and meditation retreats - ashrams

Mountainous foothills

Religious sites
 
 

Regions within Uttaranchal

  • Corbett NP 
  • Haridwar 
  • Mussoorie 
  • Rishikesh 
 

Bordering Nepal and Tibett, Uttaranchal  is the gateway from Delhi to the Himalayas.  However, it should not be considered as a by-pass given its a wealth of wildlife, culture, and mountainous beauty.  The snowy peaks here rank among the most  of the inner Himalayas, forming an almost continuous chain that culminates in Nanda Devi, the highest mountain in India at 7816m.

Garhwal is the most visited region by local pilgrims flocking to the holy spots. International toursits tend to favour Haridwar, where the Ganges thungers out from the foothills on its journey out to sea.   Most travellers head into the mountains for treks but those seeking a relatively short trek through Garhwal's villages woudl enjoy the Dodi Tal Trek.  many of the locals are only to happy to porter for you , so you can be rucksack free but be sure they know what they are doing. Alternatively head 5 km to the mountain bugyals of the Bhyundar valley- the "valley of flowers"  The best time to visit is actually at the end of the monsoon in september and you may experience wet and marshy ground but the flowers are at full bloom and quite magnificent.

The ashram town of Rishikesh nearby was made famous by the Beatles in the 1960's who visited the Maharishi.  The most luxurious of spas is the 6 star Ananda spa,  although more modest centres are plentiful, albeit quite raw.  On a more active note, Rishikesh is becoming an emerging location  for adventure sports like white water rafting, trrekking and mountaineering.

Mussourie, a British hill station is now very popular as a weekend retreat for working city folk.  The township has a ruely colonial ambience whilst being full of souvenir shops and bazaars.  Further down the mountains sits the Corbett National Park, home to about 143 tigers - spot one from a jeep or from the back of an elephant.  A more common sighting is elephants, antelope or occasionally leopards.