Nestled among snow-covered peaks, captivating rivers, wild flora & fauna, holy temples and pilgrimages, the Garhwal region of Uttarakhand allows tourists to relish and quench the travel lust in them. Garhwal is bordered by Tibet, Kumaon, Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh on the north, east, south, and west respectively. Moreover, the region is inhabited by wild animals like snow leopards, panthers, tigers, jackals, bears, musk deer among others. The valleys and meadows in the Garhwal region are home to rich flora which includes about 500 species of flowers, deodar, fig, chestnut, etc. So, if you are thinking to tick off this region from your list then that is one of the best decisions that you will make. To ease the process, we have created a list of the top places to visit in Garhwal.
15 Places To Visit In Garhwal
If you wish to explore Garhwal and are planning to take a trip soon then this might help! If you had been looking for exciting places in Garhwal then the list of the must-visit places in Garhwal to experience the scenic beauty this place offers given below is all that you need. From religious to scenic there is a lot to explore! Keep reading to know more!
- Mussoorie: Popular Yet Mesmerising
- Tehri Dam: The Highest Indian Dam
- Chamba: A Historical Town
- Devprayag: The Town Of Holy Confluence
- Dhanaulti: Tranquility & Scenic Views
- Kanatal: A Sweet Escapade
- Nag Tibba: An Exciting Trek Point
- Shivling Trek: An Adventure Awaits
- Deoria Tal: The Reflection Lake
- Chopta: A Quaint Hamlet Town
- Lansdowne: Solitudinal And Peaceful
- Surkanda Devi Temple: Seek Blessings
- Khatling Glacier: A Hidden Gem
- Chakrata: Offbeat Yet Spectacular
- Sem Mukhem Temple: Dedicated to Nag Raja
1. Mussoorie: Popular Yet Mesmerising
Mussoorie is your destination if you want to experience tranquil hills and unadulterated nature in the most accurate sense of the term. Tucked in the foothills of the ranges of Himalaya, Mussoorie is popularly known as the ‘Queen of the Hills’. Mussorie experiences pleasant, cool climate all through the year which makes it a popular holiday destination among tourists and thye many places to visit in Mussoorie add on to the effect. The mall road in Mussoorie is a prime tourist attraction. Roadside Eateries and handicraft shops and lamp posts line the entire stretch rendering it a distinct colonial vibe.
How to reach: Dehradun railway station, situated about 36 km away is the nearest railway station to Mussoorie. Once you reach Dehradun by train, you can board buses, cabs or taxis for Mussorie.
2. Tehri Dam: The Highest Indian Dam
The highest known dam in India and one among the highest dams in the world, the Tehri dam offers a magnificent and an astounding sight to tourists and is one of the famous places to visit in Garhwal. It draws water from two of the Himalayan rivers – bhilangana and Bhagirathi, serving as the world’s largest hydro-electrical project and generating 1000 megawatts of hydroelectricity. Apart from serving this purpose, it is also a famous tourist destination in the Garhwal region in Uttarakhand. Not only does The scenic beauty of this hilly terrain attracts people, but also activities like water zorbing, jet skiing and rafting that people can indulge in.
The Tehri dam offering the sight of a huge dam with dormant waters surrounded by high mountains all on sides can be reached easily by well-maintained roads. It stands as an example of great skilled engineering and architecture and is a must-visit for anyone who seeks to experience nature and adventure. The Tehri lake allows tourists to take part in several water sports like speed Boston, angling, rowing, Boating, rafting, etc which charms thousands of adventure seekers every year.
How to reach: Rishikesh is the closest railway station to Tehri. Once you reach Rishikesh, you can reach Tehri by motorable roads. Jolly Grant airport, 91 km away is the closest airport. Also, buses and taxis from Dehradun, Rishikesh are easily available.
3. Chamba: A Historical Town
This is Himalayan town is nestled at an altitude of 966 meters on the banks of the river Ravi and is one of the best places to visit in Garhwal. This ancient town is bordered by Lahaul, Jammu and Kashmir and Kangra on three sides. There are many places to visit in Chamba that represent Indian history. Besides being a historical town, Chamba is famous for offering stunning views of the Zanskar, Pir Panjal and Dhauladhar Ranges. Moreover, as several treks start from here, it serves as the base camp in the ranges of Himalaya. Also, it is popular for its conventional arts and handicraft items and small scale Pahari paintings. Apart from all this, it is the stunning scenic beauty and the calm ambiance that beckons tourists to visit this place. During March and April, this town celebrates a famous festival, Suhu Mata Mela for four days and on the 2nd Sunday of Shravan month, it celebrates Minjar Mela.
How to reach: the closest railway station to Chamba is in Pathankot, about 120 km away. From there, cabs and buses are easily available. Also, one can reach Chandigarh by train and then take a bus or cab
4. Devprayag: The Town Of Holy Confluence
Popular as the meeting point of Bhagirathi and Alaknanda, Devprayag is a religious spot that is mostly visited by pilgrims to seek solitude, that too, in the lap of nature and that makes it one of the famous Garhwal destinations. These two rivers merge in Devprayag to form Ganga at an elevation of 830 meters. Devprayag, bounded by Himalayan ranges has become a popular pilgrim center especially among Hindus for its religious importance. Besides being the confluence point of the two sacred rivers, it is also home to ancient temples like Raghunath Ji temple and idols amidst the beautiful and serene surroundings.
How to reach: the place is accessible from most of the cities of Uttarakhand using road and rail transport. Jolly Grant airport happens to be the closest airport.
5. Dhanaulti: Tranquility & Scenic Views
Looking for amazing Garhwal tourist places? Situated 62 km away from Mussoorie, this little hill station in Uttarakhand offers you comfort and tranquility with minimum human intervention, thereby providing you a break from your daily monotonous work routine this is one of the Garhwal destinations. Some of the must-visit tourist attractions in Dhanaulti are Eco Park, Potato Farm, Surkanda Devi Temple, Dashavatara Temple, and Dhanaulti Adventure Park.
How to reach: Dhanaulti is at a 1-hour distance from Mussoorie. It can be easily reached by air, bus or Personal vehicles or by train from prominent cities of Uttarakhand. The nearest airport to Dhanaulti is located in Dehradun with the name Jolly Grant Airport.
6. Kanatal: A Sweet Escapade
Like most of the Garhwal tourist places, Kanatal which was once barren land has become famous as a place offering peace and solitude to travellers . It is said to have been named after a lake that no longer exists now. It lies close to other hilly terrains like Chamba, Dehradun, Mussoorie e filled with a plethora of flora and fauna, exhibiting majestic hills and lush green forests. This place lies at an altitude of 8500 ft above sea level and has remained unexplored by human civilization so far and hence experiences salubrious pure weather. While staying in Kanatal, homestays made up of mud and straw are the ideal places to stay. This will help you in experiencing the typical rural lifestyle. Interacting with the inhabitants of kanatal will make your journey further insightful.
How to reach: Kanatal is well connected via roads so one can plan a road trip to this destination.
7. Nag Tibba: An Exciting Trek Point
Nag Tibba peak is situated in the Tehri Garhwal region in Uttarakhand and is one of the well-known trekking point. This trek offers amazing views of Gangotri, Swarga Rohini, Bandar Poonch and Kedarnath mountain ranges en route. The best time to go for the Nag Tibba trek is either between September to December or between February and June. This trek has easy routes surrounded by dense deodar forests and mountains all along. The lush green meadows act as favourable camping sites where people can take rest.
How to reach: the closest airport to this place is the Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun. Nag tibba is about 60 km from Mussoorie e and can be reached by a 10 km trek from patwari. The nearest Railway station is Mussoriee, about 33km away.
8. Shivling Trek: An Adventure Awaits
Shivling besides being one of the holy places in the Garhwal region has also become a favourite spot for adventure lovers for the challenging trek route this place offers. It offers a splendid view of the Himalayan mountain ranges that remains unparalleled to anything. Located near Shivling is Tapovan meadow, a pilgrim center. Places like Shivling, Gurmukh, and Tapovan offer magnificent lavish greenery adorned by rain coupled with the snow-filled mountain ranges during monsoons.
How to reach: To reach Shivling Trek location, one has to first reach Gaumukh which is located at a distance of 6 kilometers. Cab and bus services are abundantly available from Uttarkashi, Rishikesh and other places to Shivling. Saying that, the Jolly Grant Airport is the closest airport to this place.
Suggested Read: 15 Places To Visit In Uttarakhand This Winter 2020-21
9. Deoria Tal: The Reflection Lake
A crystal clear lake, Deoria Tal is surrounded by the Chaukhamba peaks and is one of the Garhwal tourist places. Trekking here is a heavenly experience. The spacious lawns filled with generous vegetation make it an ideal place for sightseeing, star gazing and camping. People who camp near the Kedarnath musk deer sanctuary often gets to spot wild animals during dawn. Trekking is open all through the year. If you want to traverse the untrodden paths then you must visit the top tourist destination in Garhwal.
How to reach: Sari village is about 14 km from Ukhimath. From Sari, it takes about 1.5 hrs to reach Deoria Tal. There is no motorable road to Deoria Tal. One has to take the trek route of about 3 km from Sari village to Deoria Tal.
10. Chopta: A Quaint Hamlet Town
A quaint little hamlet town untouched by commercialisation and offering stunning views, Chopta is one of the stunning places to see in Garhwal. Evergreen forests and meadows give this place a surreal vibe and trekking destinations like Chandrashila and Tungnath make it a place for adventure. Also known as the ‘Mini Switzerland’ of India, Chopta is something not to be missed.
How to reach: The nearest airport is Dehradun airport which is at a distance of 178 km from Chopta and the nearest railway station is in Rishikesh which is 162 kilometers.
11. Lansdowne: Solitudinal And Peaceful
Attracting many with its old world charm, Lansdowne is one of the most well known tourist places in Garhwal. The quaint hillside is acquiring more fame by the day and why not! Lined with beautiful pine and deodar trees, with a gorgeous backdrop of lush green mountainscape, Lansdowne is beautiful and happening. The many great places to visit in Lansdowne such as St. Mary Church, War Memorial, Bhulla Lake and much more add to its charm.
How to reach: The nearest airport is Dehradun airport which is at a distance of 178 km from Chopta and the nearest railway station is in Rishikesh which is 162 kilometers.
12. Surkanda Devi Temple: Seek Blessings
One of the religious places to see in Garhwal that will require for you to take a 2 kilometer trek is the Surkanda Devi Temple. This one is a trekker’s paradise and while the trek is tough the view from the top iss everything and maakes up for it! This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is based on the popular mythology of Sati taking the sacrificial fire to go against her father’s act of not inviting Lord Shiva to a ceremony.
How to reach: The neaarest railway station is located in Dehradun and is at a distance of 67 kilometers. The nearest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun which is at a distance of 85 kilometers from the temple.
13. Khatling Glacier: A Hidden Gem
Nestled between mesmerising snow caped peaks in Tehri, Khatling Glacier is a hidden gem and one of the most amaazing places to visit in Garhwal! Situated at the height of 15,000 feet and believed to be sacred, Khatline Glacier is covered in pristine white snow which makes the place look stunning. Add to that the variegated moraines and tall mountain peaks and the views of stunning lakes and valleys, that’s Khatling Glacier for you!
How to reach: Khatling Glacier is located in Ghuttu Village. The nearest railway station is located in Rishikesh and from there you can take a taxi till Ghuttu. The nearest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun which is at a distance of 170 kilometers from Ghuttu Village.
14. Chakrata: Offbeat Yet Spectacular
A scenic hill station in Uttarakhand which is lesser-known and that only adds on to its value, Chakrata is scenic and offers so much that you would be pleasantly surprised about how such a small place can contain so much! The spellbinding views and the serenity this place offers is something you would remember forever and the many places to visit in Chakrata will surprise you in many ways. Visit the place and witness it in all its glory!
How to reach: The nearest railway station is located in Dehradun and is at a distance of 89 kilometers (approx) and the nearest airport is the Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun at a distance of 118 kilometers.
15. Sem Mukhem Temple: Dedicated to Nag Raja
Disclaimer: The image is for representation purposes only.
Sem Mukhem Temple is a temple dedicated to Nag Raja and one of the best Garhwal tourist places to visit. Located in Tehri Garhwal of Uttarakhand, the temple complex is quite old and the architecture of this temple resembles the style used to build the esteemed seat of Lord Shiva at the Kedarnath Temple. Visitors from all over the country visit this temple to offer prayers and seek blessings of the King of Nag.
How to reach: You can reach Sem Mukhem Temple by a trek of 7 km from Khamba Khal
The Garhwal region is a treasured land for art and nature lovers. The lush green forests bordered by mountain ranges offer a visual treat to the eyes. The most prominent places to visit in Garhwal have been mentioned which one should never miss. So without further delay, plan your vacation to Uttarakhand this year and get ready to capture some amazing views.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit In Garhwal
What is the best time to visit Garhwal?
The ideal time is summer when the weather remains warm and pleasant. Springs and waterfalls can be seen during the summers especially. The Valley of flowers in Uttarakhand gets colourful when all flowers bloom at this time of the year. It is advised not to visit Garhwal during monsoons. Winters should also be avoided since temperatures fall too low accompanied by snowfall sometimes.
What is the mode of transportation?
Jeeps and taxis continue to be an affordable means of transportation in Garhwal. Shared jeeps or cabs are found in abundance connecting Rishikesh, Dehradun, and Haridwar. For the places that are not beside the major north-south route, vehicles are to be changed accordingly. Garhwal is well connected to the important cities by buses which are available 24*7.
What type of weather is experienced in Garhwal?
Garhwal is warm with pleasant, cool evenings during the summer season and has bitterly cold winters. But throughout the year, it offers spell-bounding sights. The monsoons come with a light or heavy rainfall and rainstorms occasionally.
What is the speciality of the Garhwal region?
The Garhwalis celebrate Asia’s largest lake festival, the Tehri lake festival which is organized by the UTDB (Uttarakhand tourism department board). It involves delicious food, folk dance, music, water sports and so much more. The festival celebrates cultures, art, and adventures from 25th February to 27th February every year.
What are the popular dishes of the Garhwal region?
Uttarakhand is popular for its dishes too. The kumaoni and Garhwali cuisines made from grains and cereals should be tasted and relished. The most notable lip-smacking foods are kali, bhang ki chutney, phaanu, baadi, kandalee ka saag, chainsoo, and Kumaon raita lastly prepared from turmeric, curd and cucumber.
Where to stay in Garhwal, Uttarakhand?
People get ample to affordable hotels in and around the prominent tourist spots in the Garhwal region. The GMVN- Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam guest house is located at prime locations. They offer luxury, deluxe bungalows as well as budget-friendly accommodations.
Which are some of the must-visit places in Garhwal?
The must-visit has already been mentioned above. Apart from them, there are plenty like Chamoli, Ali bugyal, didna village, Kedarnath base, Chandra Shila peak, maldaru lake and baraadsar lake. Hill stations like Auli, Pauri Garhwal are also worth seeing.
Which is the nearest airport to Garhwal?
Jolly Grant Airport, 133 km away from Garhwal is the nearest airport located in Dehradun. From the airport, buses, taxis can be easily availed for a soothing ride to your desired location. Also, the airport is connected to Chandigarh and Delhi by daily flights.
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