Visit the Lesser Known Kumaon in Uttarakhand



Already visited Nainital, Mukteshwar and Ranikhet but want to delve deeper in the Kumaon mountains of Uttarakhand? If your answer is a Yes, then here are some places to keep in mind for your next visit. Most of the places I am recommending to you do not support the 'Mall Road' vibe but instead are less crowded, surrounded by lush green forests, for nature lovers and are a call for those seriously considering escaping the concrete jungle for a few days.

Sitlakhet 

Himalaya View from Sitlakhet
Himalaya View from Sitlakhet

A 3 hour drive from Nainital or a 1 hour drive from Ranikhet is Sitlakhet. Sitlakhet has recently become popular for it's rich diversity in birds making it one of the top places to visit in the state for the birdwatching kind. Clear views of the snow-clad Himalayan peaks such as the Trishul and Nandadevi and just a handful or shops and houses makes this village a perfect place for a weekend getaway. Stay at the brilliantly done Anant Rasa. 

Bhatrojkhan

Peace in Bhatrojkhan
Peace in Bhatrojkhan

Easier to get to if you are driving from Ramnagar towards Ranikhet. This little hamlet is famous for its tall and massive deodar (cedar trees) and pine trees, undisturbed winding roads and the 10th century Binsar Mahadev temple. Very peaceful and ideal for families too. Various options for all budgets but I prefer staying at the 100+ year old forest bungalow (camps and proper built up rooms) near the temple or Faraway Renz a few kilometers away.

Ramgarh

Stay in Ramgarh
Simple living in Ramgarh

About 35km from Nainital is the village of Ramgarh. Known for it's fruit orchards and quiet living, Ramgarh is the preferred place to stay for the rich and famous of big cities. You will see several gated bungalows some from the British days but regardless it is a great place to unwind, go bird watching, go on nature trails in and around the village if you like to walk after a nice breakfast or simply do nothing. Stay at the Ramgarh Bungalows, a heritage property by the Neemrana Group of Resorts.

Marchula

Ramganga River in Marchula
Ramganga River in Marchula

If you're heading towards Corbett National Park or Nainital, take a slight detour and head towards Marchula by the Ramganga River. Most tourists stop at Ramnagar if they are planning to go inside the National Park to see tigers and few venture to Marchula making it a hidden gem for nature and animal lovers. Expect to see several species of birds and larger mammals such as elephants, deer and if you're lucky ever a leopard or a tiger. Stay at my favourite eco lodge in the foothills (requires you to walk for at least an hour through a dry river bed and then on a raft to cross the river. What fun!).

Pangot

Pangot Sunset
Pangot Sunset

I think I have stressed enough already that Pangot is one of my favorite destinations to visit. Read more here about what I have to say about this massive and largely undisturbed expanse of green.

These are some of my favourite destinations in Kumaon. If you would like to visit any of these, please contact me on +91 9717148483 or kunal@totravelwith.com. 


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