Uttarakhand is the newly added northern state in the Indian constitution which was previously called Uttaranchal. This piece of land is also called the “God’s Adobe” and has many temples of great religious and historical importance. Nature has been very kind to this place and provided it with breathtaking locations that have magnetized many luminaries belonging to the arts, film, politics and other fields.
Kumaon and Garhwal are its two divisions. There are 13 districts that come under both these divisions. Almora is one district that belongs to the Kumaon division. It is closer to the magnificent Himalayan mountains and appears as if it is created by the God himself.
Surrounded with ridges that shine and change colour to blue and green depending on the season, Almora hill station is a place to enjoy the snow-clad Himalayan mountains. You can enjoy rafting in the Suyal and Koshi rivers emerging from the mountain and flowing through the valley. The height of the hill station is 1650 meters above the sea level and stretched across 5 km of mountain range.
Almora hill station is one of the locations that has held its cultural root even after so many centuries of its establishment. King Balo Kalyan Chand built this town in 1563. Unlike other hill stations that are mostly developed by the British, this particular hill station is one which has total local influence. You will never see any kind of urban development or encroachments because of which the terraced land still upholds its natural beauty.
The engrossing scenic beauty and exhilarating weather have made Almora an ideal place to enjoy the nature at its best. Even doctors prescribe this destination for patients who are in need of fresh air. Many temples built in the town have also given this place the name as the town of temples.
Interesting Places in Almora
This is a cantonment area 55 km from the town. It is famous for its invigorating climate, refreshing breeze, magnetizing natural beauty and the panoramic view of the Himalayan hills. The greenery in this area is largely because of high plantation of pine and oak trees. The Kumaon Regiment of the Indian Army has its base here. There is a museum which is built and maintained by this regiment. The golf course is another spot to get indulged in.
Some of the country’s best apple is grown at four km from Ranikhet. Then, there are orchards of peaches, apricots and plums. This place also has high value for religious sentiments and has a Jhoola Devi Temple, Ram Mandir, Herakhan Temple, Kalika Temple and Binsar Mahadeva Temple.
A 52 km ride from Almora will provide you a closer view of the Himalayan peaks. Kausani is the spot to detach yourself from all immaterial pleasure and drench yourself into the loneliness where you can converse with the nature. The high green trees and fruit orchards spread over the hill slopes has decorated this place with plenty of greenery. The wide green expanse of the valley, and the Sun rising through the high peaks will spellbind you. When Mahatma Gandhi lived here for three weeks, the charming beauty of this location made him to exclaimed and name the area as India’s Switzerland.
This temple is 8 km from Almora and built to worship Lord Golu. The locals and the Kumaon community have lots of trusts in this Lord. Whenever they visit the temple, they make a wish. Once their wish is fulfilled, they revisit and tie a small bell at the door of the temple. You can reach this shrine by walking through the pine forest or you can hire a cart.
Bright End Corner
This spot is closer to the town (just 2 km). The main feature of this area is the sunrise and sunset views. When Swami Vivekananda was on his way to the Himalayas to find some spiritual peace, he rested for a while here. The place where he stayed now holds a memorial. You can lodge at the circuit house and visit the Vivekananda Library if you love reading.
Katarmal is a sun temple built some 800 years ago. It is seven km from the town and is considered the second most important after the Sun Temple of Konark, Orissa. You can see some of the detailed and complicating artworks carved on the walls of the temple.
Nanda Devi Temple
This temple is very famous among locals. It is a 1000-year old temple with beautiful carvings. Each year, a fair is organized at this temple to pray to the goddess. The includes includes a dance festival in which locals and people from other mountain areas participate.
Kasar Devi Temple
This temple was built in the 2nd century on the peak of a mountain. It is near Kalimut and a perfect place to meditate and seek solitude.
It is 90 km from the town. It is the camping sites for tourist who are heading towards the Pindari Glacier located at the height of 3820 meters.
Binsar is 30 km from the town and is encircled with thick Oak and Rhodendron forest. It also offers a closer view of the Himalayan mountains. This area is now a wildlife sanctuary and is inhabited by the panther and barking deer. It is also visited for the Binsar Temple.
It is 47 km and is famous for natural caves and historical temples of Lord Shiva. This place is where you can spend ideal time enjoying the nature’s beauty. The importance of this area is greater during the Kartik Purnima.
How to Reach Almora Hill Station?
Pantnagar Airport in Nainital is the nearest airport. From here, Almora is 125 km. A taxi, sumo or a minibus is available from the airport to Almora.
The Kathgodam railway station is the nearest and is connected with other cities in India. From here, Almora is 91 km.
All National Highways are connected to this town. One can reach Kathgodam from Delhi through national highway 24 and 87. Ranikhet-Almora Road that starts from Kathgodam via Bhowali is connected to Almora.
The best time to visit Almora hill stations is from March to June and September to November. It has many attractions you will not escape with. If you want to pay respect to religious places, get pleasure from natural beauty, or challenge the swelling river, there are abundant locations waiting for you in this land.