» Kumaon Travel Guide »
Snow clad peaks
, Loads of flowers , fruit orchards , picturesque grass fields ,breathtaking panoramic
view of wild life , Dancing rivers ,clueless water sources and hard working women
they all indicates to one region that is also termed as "Abode of Gods"
(Dev-Bhumi) and better known as Kumaon .Kumaon is a beautiful region in the newly
formed state Uttaranchal . It is in the northern side of Uttarpradesh . Uttaranchal
consists of two main regions ,they are Garhwal and Kumaon . Both the regions are
After Katyuri kings ,the Chands of Pithoragarh
became the dominant dynasty. The magnificient temple complex at Jageshwar with
it's cluster of a hundred and sixty four temples, was built by the Chand rulers
over a space of two centuries. This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva.
lower Kumaon hills have a large number of tals or lakes. Nainital is of course
famous, more so nowadays as a vivid example of environmental degradation. Others
like Bhimtal and Sattal are in much better shape due to the absence of a major
town on their periphery.
Kumaon is, or rather was, classic tiger country.
Now-a-days most of Kumaon's remaining Tigers are resident in the Jim Corbett National
Park, India's first National Park situated in the lower Kumaon hills (Near Ramnagar)
. Jim Corbete with whom this national park shares its name was the famous tiger
hunter and he described all about Kumaoni tigers in his book "The man eaters
of kumaon" . The loss of tigers and scarcity of them shows the disruption
in the natural order due to rising human and cattle population .
of Kumaon is very pleasant . People come here for their treatment and for enjoying
the natural beauty .However excessive tourism is deteriorating the natural balance
History of Kumaon
Kumaon is derived from "Kurmanchal" which meanes Land of the Kurmavtar
(the tortoise incarnation of Lord Vishnu, Preserver of Mankind as per hindu religion
).Kumaon consists of six Districts Almora, Nainital, Pithoragarh, Bageshwar, Champawat
and Udhamsingh Nagar. .Kumaon is situated in Central Himalayas .Himalaya in the
north , "Kali" river in east , Garhwal in the west and Plain area in
south make the typial boundry of this region. This region was mainly ruled by
The Katyuri and Chand dynasties .They also construct different temples in this
region.Some of them are very famous and attracts lot of tourists. The early medieval
history of Kumaon, is the history of the Katyuri dynasty. The Katyuri kings ruled
from the 7th to the 11th century . Their kingdom was over large areas of Kumaon,
Garhwal and western Nepal. The town of Baijnath near Almora was the capital of
this dynasty and a center of the arts. They have started architectural innovation
and build lot of temples in which they have used heavy stones .One of the best
example is Katarmal .On a hilltop facing east, opposite Almora, is the temple
of Katarmal. This 900 year old sun temple was built during the declining years
of the Katyuri dynasty.
Interest in Kumaon Almora Tourism : Nature's Munificence -
Of the three districts of Kumaon, Almora occupies a central location. Being further
away from the plains than Nainital, this district provides tranquil spots where
one can enjoy the mountain air without jostling against milling holiday-makers.
The town of Almora (1646 m), lies along a saddle-ridge amidst a lush amphitheatre
of terraced slopes. Overlooking the arterial Mall, where the bus terminus, shops
selling bal mithai (a famous milk confection of Kumaon), and private lodges and
restaurants are located, is flattish bowl-the virtual picture of fertility with
its canals, hamlets and the foaming Kosi river.
Beyond and behind the
ridge lie tiers of hills and dales, edged ultimately by a Himalayan panorama.
Unlike Shimla, Nainital and Ranikhet - north Indian hill stations discovered and
patronized by the British. Almora is truly Indian hill resort. It was founded
by Raja Kalyan Chand in 1560 (he shifted his capital here from Champawati).
There is Mohan Joshi Park, a favorite picnic ground close to the Mall. Bright
End Corner, 2 km away, commands a grand view of the Himalayas - particularly spectacular
at dawn and dusk. Deer Park and Simtola (both 3km away) offer lush environs. Kalimath
(5km) is famed for its scenic grandeur and a panoramic view of Almora town. A
kilometre from here is Kasar Devi temple, worth a visit for its superb surroundings.
Bageshwar Tourism :
Situated at the confluence of rivers Saryu,
Gomti and latent Bhagirathi, lies the holy township of Bageshwar; also revered
as the pious land associated with Lord Sadashiva, the redeemer of all sins. This
quaint town abounds in religious legends, festive happenings and mind blowing
surroundings. Famous primarily as a prominent Shaivaite delight, Bageshwar has
its share of patriotic expressions and picturesque interludes. Bageshwar is 90
Kms from Almora.
Baghwath Temple plays host to the Biggest Uttaryani
Mela. Take a look around and you will find Bhileshwar mountains over looking in
the East. Neeleshwar mountains meditating in the West. Suraj Kund basking in legends
in the North and Agni Kund radiating in the South.
For trekking enthusiasts
too, Bageshwar is an important destination. Because one can reach Pindari, Kaphni
and Sundardhunga glaciers only through Bageshwar. So if your are planning a complete
yet 'different break' come to Bageshwar.
Champawat Tourism :
Champawat, the ancient capital of the Chand rulers is well known for its temples
and natural beauty. The historical town 76 kms from Pithoragarh has an ancient
fort, which is now headquarters of the Tehsil office. The mythological legends
suggest that Lord Vishnu appeared here as 'Kurma avatar' (the tortoise incarnation).
The story of Golla Devta is also associated with Gorilla Chaur of Champawat. Jim
Corbett, the famous hunter came to this region in the first decade of the 20th
century to hunt for man eating tigers. His first book, "Man Eaters of Kumaon"
is related to Champawat.
Champawat was declared as a separate district on
15 Dec. 1997 by then CM of UP Ms. Mayawati, then it was a part of UP. Earlier
Champawat was only a Tehsil of Pithoragarh district.
Champawat once been
the capital of the chand dynasty is a historical place of Kumaon. Besides its
historical importance, its very famous for the beautiful architecture and carvings
on the temples, Baleshwar Temple being one of them. Champawat is a beautiful town
with breathtaking landscapes and terraced fields, which cover the valley. A river
snakes past these landscapes and fields forming a beautiful picture. Champawat
offers the tourists with virtually everything they expect from nature, ranging
from pleasant climate to varied wildlife and good places to trek.
the time in memorial Champawat district is having its own importance in terms
of religious and social aspects. It is believed that Champawat district is the
source and origin of religion and culture of Uttaranchal. In the ancient time
this region was the origin of Naga, Kinnar and Khas Rajas. The available historical
pillars, manuscripts, archeological collection and folk-lore describe the greatness
of the area during the period of Maha Bharata. Nainital Tourism :
Naini, a word that brings the cool air with its name, is a secret hide out
of the tourists each year. Situated at an altitude of 1,938 M, this dreamland
town with its beauteous splendour is one of the most popular summer resorts of
the country. The nucleus of Nainital's exquisite beauty is her lake which is a
haven for water sports like Yachting, Kayaking, Canoeing and Boating.
lake in the middle of the city is the main attraction of Nainital. The lake at
south end is called Tallital and at north end is called Mallital. The city of
Nainital is developed around this lake. The lake offers yatching and cool boat
rides in its waters. A unique feature of the lake is that it hosts the only Post
Office on a lake bridge in whole world. An evening walk on the road, on the banks
of the lake, gives an unforgettable experience.
meaning seven lakes is a group of small lakes nested together, about 23 kms from
Nainital at an altitude of (1370 MT) still untouched by modernisation, one can
see the natural beauty at its best. Pithoragarh Tourism :
While you are at a tour of Pithoragarh, you can check out a number of lakes around
Pithoragarh. There are two of them which are quite famous, one of them being Jolingkong
and the other one being Anchherital. While the former is at a height of 4,634
meters, the latter is situated at an altitude of 3,658 meters. The district is
dotted all over with many old temples that you visit. There is a shrine at Purnagiri,
which is only 20 kms from Tanakpur, and there is another Sikh shrine near Lohaghat
called Ritha Sahib. According to a belief, Guru Nanak touched the bitter ritha
and it turned sweet after his touch.
A tour to the White Manu Temple
is also a must if you are in Pithoragarh. It is dedicated to the Goddess, who
on invocation brings rain thus good fortune to the mountains. Udham
Singh Nagar Tourism :
Udham Singh Nagar district was carved out of Nainital
district in October 1995 and was named after Shri Udham Singh, a great freedom
fighter, who killed General Dyer and took revenge for the Jalianwala Bagh massacre.
Udham Singh Nagar is basically an industrial district and many industry related
professions are prevalant here, it is perfect example of 'Unity in Diversity'
for which India is so widely known, on the other hand different cultures, religions
and life styles are blended in absolute harmony.
It is also known as
the gateway to Kumaon because on seeing the beauty of this district alone, one
can very well imagine what kumaon is waiting to offer. Udham Singh Nagar is full
of Wildlife and Natural beauty. The Himalayan ranges that surround Udham Singh
Nagar are perfect in beauty and serenity. Places of Interest
» Atariya Temple
» Nanak Matta
» Chaiti Devi Temple
» Giri Sarovar