Uttarakhand

India
Bhimtal which includes boating and kayaking or canoeing
Visit a northern Indian state with great variety, from gorgeous scenery and year-round outdoor pursuits to beautiful temples and a renowned yoga destination.

Uttarakhand is known as the Land of the Gods, a vast Himalayan region representing the power and beauty of nature and devotion to deities. Dotted among the diverse landscape of mountains, valleys, rivers, lakes and glaciers are many sacred temples, shrines and pilgrimage centers. Ski across rugged mountains, meditate on the banks of a river and visit ancient temples.

Enjoy the many ways to discover Uttarakhand's wealth of natural landscapes. Travel through Rajaji National Park on a jungle safari to spot tigers, panthers and elephants. Tackle the challenging rapids of the Dhauliganga and Kali rivers on a rafting trip. Go trekking and rock climbing in the Garhwal region. Rent a mountain bike and speed through the foothills of the Himalayas, stopping off at towns and villages en route. Navigate the slopes of the Auli Ski Resort in Chamoli District.

Hike up to Vasuki Tal Mountain Lake in Kedarnath. According to legend, Lord Vishnu, the Hindu god of the world, bathed in this lake. Nearby is the Kedarnath Temple, or Kedarnath Mandir, an ancient religious building more than 1,000 years old.

One of the state's most spiritual places is the town of Rishikesh, where the Himalayan Mountains meet the plains around the Ganges River. It is considered by many as the yoga capital of the world, home to numerous shrines and yoga ashrams. Attend mediation and yoga classes at the water’s edge.

See the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi Ashram, the abandoned spiritual retreat where the Beatles meditated and wrote songs in 1968. The surrounding forest is slowly swallowing the ashram, but you can still visit meditation cells and the lecture hall, which has been turned into a Beatles-themed art project.

To get to Uttarakhand, fly into New Delhi. Make the rest of the journey by bus, car or train. The distance is about 225 miles (365 kilometers). Uttarakhand is a fascinating place where you can learn about the area's religious heritage, relax and enjoy nature and adventurous pursuits.

Popular cities in Uttarakhand

Lakshman Jhula which includes a river or creek, a suspension bridge or treetop walkway and a small town or village
Rishikesh
Known for Rivers, Yoga and Rafting
From ashrams, yoga centers and temples to white-water rafting and bungee jumping, this Himalayan town offers an exquisite mix of relaxation and adventure.

Reasons to visit

  • Parmarth Niketan
  • Lakshman Temple
  • Ram Jhula
Nainital featuring forest scenes
Nainital
Known for Lakes, Mountains and Zoo
From boating on a sacred lake to hiking and riding a cable-car to spectacular viewpoints, natural beauty thrives in the heart of Uttarakhand’s Lake District.

Reasons to visit

  • Nainital Lake
  • Naukuchia Taal
Triveni Ghat showing a sunset and religious elements as well as a small group of people
Haridwar
Known for Yoga, Nature and Rafting
The “Gateway to God” is an energetic city and pilgrim center blessed with magnificent temples, colorful festivals and striking Himalayan scenery.