Here Are 6 Lesser-Known Towns of Uttarakhand That You Must Visit 

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The abode of gods, the land of myths and mysteries – Uttarakhand is a traveller's paradise. The mighty mountains of the state have treasures hidden deep within them. With dense forests, tall peaks, and meagre populations, Uttarakhand’s interiors are just right to experience untouched beauty and solitude. For your next vacation, dare to be different and stay away from the invading hordes of big-city-weary vacationers. Here are the lesser-known destinations Uttarakhand that you must visit.

Image credit: Wikipedia

Photo of Pokhari, Uttarakhand, India by Saumiabee

Where: Chamoli District, Uttarakhand

Famous for: Pokhari is paradise for those who love to experience a place by walking on foot. There are several walks around the village that can easily be done by beginners as well. These walks lead you up to remote temples that are rich in legends and myths. Walks around Pokhri are main attractions of the town which can be done easily by beginners.

What you can do : Kartik Swamy Temple, which is about a 2 hours trek is said to have been the abode of Parvati and Ganesh once upon a time. The route is picturesque with views of rolling hills and farms going around the alley. The Dudhkam Devi Temple walk is an easier one, which will gift you breath-taking views of Chaukhamba, Kedarnath, Nanda Devi and the Haathi-Ghodi peaks. You will see a panoramic view of the Mandakini and Alaknanada valleys from here. You can also opt for the Nagnath and Chandnikhal walk that are only a short walk away from Guniyal. In the month of March, July and August, these paths are carpeted in colourful flowers and make it a sight to behold.

Image credit: Sanjay Talukdar

Photo of Mori, Uttarakhand, India by Saumiabee

Where: Uttarkashi, Uttarakhand

Famous for: Mori is located around the meandering river of Tons where you can swim in deep pools of the river, relax lazily along its banks, or bike through a boulevard of mimosa and pine-trees. Myth says that the river was formed by the tears of the demoness Supranakha (from Ramayan) and thus, although the waters may look calm, they are actually quite dangerous and unpredictable.

What you can do: In order to get the best experience from what the valley has to offer, you can book a tent at the camps of Tons river through the various agencies that operate there. The river serves as a base for several adventure activities like river rafting, rock climbing, kayaking, Burma-bridge, rappelling, nature walks, birding watching, mountain biking, cliff jumping, team games, and star gazing. With just one trip to Mori, you can satiate all your thirst for adventure and the satisfaction will last you a lifetime! A truly ideal destination to go solo, with your family or with your friends – you are bound to have the time of your life. Some adventure companies whose packages you can choose from are Himalayan Adventure, Aquaterra Adventures , Visit Uttarakhand, and Himalayan Runner Rivers.

Image credit: Saumiabee

Photo of Shitlakhet, Uttarakhand, India by Saumiabee

Where: Almora District, Uttarakhand

Famous for: Sitlakhet is a town completely off the beaten path where tourists don't often venture. The town offers a spectacular view of the Himalayas with snow-capped peaks of Trishul, Chaukhamba, Nandakot visible in their full glory.

What you can do: If you want to relax in the lap of nature and hibernate away from the world, Sitlakhet is the ideal place for you. Stay at Ananta Rasa resort and immerse ourselves into a stay-cation. At Sitlakhet, bring your life to a slower pace and indulge into some exclusive "me-time". You can hike to Jhula Devi Temple, which is located 7km away from the town. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Durga in order to seek protection from the wild animals in the region. This is a good time to tell you that Sitlakhet's dense forests are home to leopards, so beware! Apart from this, you can go for hikes, gorge on local Kumaoni food or travel to Ranikhet for a day trip.

Image credit: Saumiabee

Photo of Chaukori, Uttarakhand, India by Saumiabee

Where: Pithoragarh District, Uttarakhand

Famous for: Located at a height of 6,590ft., Chaukori is known for providing breathtaking views of western-Himalayas. The town is flanked by Tibet on one side and Terai region on the other. Its population of only a 1a few hundreds makes this village an ideal place to retreat to.

What you can do: You can stay at KMVN tourist rest house in Chaukori, which offers Himalayan-view cottages. You can go for walks around the town and enjoy witnessing the simplistic lifestyle of its dwellers. Another fun pass-time is to go around trying out different types of food in various dhabas that dot the town. In addition to this, you can trek to hanging rocks, a jutting-out cliff that is an ideal sunset point. About 15km away from Chaukori lie the famous Pata Bhuwaneshwar Caves that are rife with mythological stories and legends. A steep ascent leads you to the caves, a journey that has been termed as extremely thrilling and equally challenging. If you're enthusiastic about stories, this is one place that you just cannot miss. 

Photo of Khati, Uttarakhand, India by Saumiabee

Where: Bageshwar District, Uttarakhand

Famous for: Located in Uttarakhand, Khati village has been transformed into a colourful heaven by Project FUEL.  The walls of Khati village are decorated with the residents’ life lessons. Taking a walk in this mountain village is a dive into art and philosophy at the same time. You must go explore this hamlet and experience the riot of colours that it is.

What you can do: This village is a photographer's delights and while you are not busy stopping at every corner and clicking photos of gorgeous murals, there are other things that you can do. The village serves as the base for Pindari Glacier, one of Uttarakhand's most renowned trekking trails. The trek is for 6 days, so you can either head for the trek or hike up to a certain distance and return. There's nothing much more to do in Khati village but you are sure to get a peep into Kumaoni culture and the lives of locals.

Image credit: Wikimedia Commons

Photo of Gwaldam, Uttarakhand, India by Saumiabee

Where: Chamoli District, Uttarakhand 

Famous for: Gwaldam is a pristine, untouched town that is known for its fusion of both, Kumaoni and Garhwali cultures. This small town forms the base for Roopkund Trek, Kuari Pass trek and Nanda Devi Yatra. Here. you will often meet travellers and pilgrims stopping over to head to upper reaches of the state. 

What you can do: You can undertake a short 3km hike up to Bandhangarhi Temple that is situated over a ridge. The route to the temple is extremely picturesque as it is blanketed with unique flowers and surrounded by numerous natural springs. If you're interested in photographing birds, get ready with your camera as you will spot many different species.  You can also take a tour into the village where you can explore culture and traditions of the region by interacting with its people. If you're lucky, they may also offer you lip-smacking Kumaoni food. 

You can head to these destinations right away since winter time is a gorgeous time to be in Uttarakhand. If you're lucky, you might just find snow in these destinations!

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