Top 10 Places To Explore In Almora, Uttarakhand
- August 08, 2020
- Tanushekha Agnihottri
Almora is a town in the Kumaon region, one of the most beautiful in the state of Uttrakhand. Behind the usual hustle-bustle of this place, you’ll find people from various cultural and traditional backgrounds. Every street of Almora speaks of its best-kept heritage consisting of folklores and rituals. Little do outsiders know about the cultural capital of Uttarakhand. No piece of writing could ever justify its magic, and one has to visit the town to experience its essence.
I visited Almora while travelling to Jeolikote and Kasar and had spent a few days in the town. I witnessed its cultural heritage while roaming in the streets of Almora. Something that does not get the deserved attention from the travellers. Let’s have a sneak peek inside the tiny busy town of Almora.
How to reach Almora?
Almora is 361 km away from New Delhi, a total of eight and half hours of drive. There are plenty of buses plying between the places. Self-drive is also a good option as roads are well built and safe to drive.
The nearest railway station, Kathgodam, is 82 km away from Almora. There are a few direct trains from New Delhi that take up to five hours to reach Kathgodam. One can hire a private cab or take a local taxi/bus to span the remaining distance to reach Almora.
Pantnagar is the nearest airport from Almora, situated 127 km away. Since the airport has a limited frequency of flights, it is advisable to make the bookings well in advance.
Best Time to Visit Almora
The months between September and June are the ideal time to see the idyllic summer and winter of the town. If you wish to behold the magic of snowfall, then visit Almora in December and January. During the monsoon, there is a high risk of a landslide it is advisable to avoid visiting the town.
Where to Stay in Almora?
There are multiple options for accommodation, hostels, boutique cottages, hotels and homestays. Almora has something for every type of traveller. A quick tip is to avoid choosing to stay in the centre of Almora town as it remains crowded. It’s best to find something in the outskirts of Almora.
Things to do in Almora
Stroll around the Market
The day you reach Almora, take your camera and jump out in the streets. The town’s major attraction is the Lala Bazar where you’ll see the chaotic yet fascinating sights. The colourful handmade jewellery, beautiful dupattas dipped in hues, grocery shops, local souvenir and noise of people bargaining with each other fills this area with liveliness. Also, a perfect place to capture some impactful portraits.
Almora is known for brassware and handicrafts, take away any of these as a memory of your trip.
Try Local Delicacies
For all the food lovers out there, Almora can surprise you with its local delicacies. And who doesn’t love some extra sugar in life? Famous Bal Mithai satisfies our sweet tooth like no other. It’s a brown fudge made with roasted Khoa and coated with sugar balls. Originated in Almora, Bal mithai is quite popular in the region. “Kheem Singh Mohan Singh Rautela Sweets” is the oldest and the best shop to try this sweet. Also, don’t forget to try some fresh hot Jalebis soaked in desi ghee.
Also, someone jokingly told me that Almora is famous for three things viz. Bal, Maal and Patall. Bal is for Bal mithai, Maal is for pretty girls, and Patall is for stone tiles used in the roofs of the houses (though the architecture trend has changed now).
Places to Visit in Almora
Bright End Corner
Do you love watching sun melting behind the hills? We love sunsets they give me immense faith in new beginnings. The Bright End Corner, a viewpoint, is only 2 km away from the centre of the town. Go here to watch sun rays splattering all over Almora, creating the most magical scenery.
Visit Nanda Devi Temple
As I mentioned already, Almora has a rich culture and heritage. It is evident from the numerous famous temples that house in and around the town. Nanda Devi is one such temple of Hindu Goddess, Durga, she is known as the destroyer of evil. Every year thousands of pilgrimages visit Nanda Devi to seek the blessing of the goddess. Nanda Devi temple is in close proximity with Lal Bazar.
Govind Ballabh Pant Public Museum
At Govind Ballabh Pant Public Museum, one can gain in-depth knowledge about the history of Almora town. The museum boasts about the struggles of Govind Ballabh Pant who dedicated his life towards the development of Uttarakhand. It displays a unique collection of pride possessions of Katyuri and Chand dynasties. The museum also exhibits Aipan paintings, a Kumauni style of paintings made in Kumaon region of Uttarakhand. So, next time you’re in Almora, visit Govind Ballabh Pant Public Museum to dig deeper into the history and tradition of the town.
Simtola is a famous picnic spot just a few km away from the main town of Almora. It is surrounded by deodar and pine trees, making it a serene place to enjoy doing nothing but gazing the beautiful views. Interestingly, Simtola used to be a granite hill and had a diamond-mining centre. Over the years it got converted into a tourist place where one can come and spend a leisure day.
Places Around Almora
Jageshwar Dham is one of the oldest Shiva temples in India. Situated 36 km north-east to Almora, Jageshwar Dham comprises of 124 clusters of small temples. These stone temples date back to between post-Gupta and pre-medieval eras. Jageshwar of often described as Adobe of Lord Shiva. Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has taken the responsibility to preserve this ancient temple which remains flooded with pilgrimages throughout the year.
Moreover, there is an Archaeological Museum run by the Archaeological Survey of India in Jageshwar. It has a collection of around 174 sculptures dating from 9th to 13th century AD among many other ancient antiques.
Explore Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary
Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary is one the favourite destination of travellers in the Kumaon region. It is only at a distance of 25 km from Almora. one can hire a cab to reach the sanctuary. Experience the wild fauna and flora of this beautiful region of the Himalayas. We absolutely loved our adventurous trip to Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary when we drove all the way to the sanctuary on a two-wheeler.
Trek to Zero Point
We must say that your visit to Almora is incomplete without witnessing the divine view of the Himalayan range from the zero point. Moreover, Zero-point is the highest vantage point of the Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary. If possible carry a pair of binoculars to enjoy the clear sights of the Himalayan peaks like Kedarnath, Nanda Devi, Shivling and Trishul. Who wouldn’t love watching such picturesque landscapes?
Kasar without a second thought is our favourite destination in the Kumaon region. The village has attracted great personalities like Bob Dylan and Swami Vivekanand who have spent a considerable amount of time here. Further, there is a famous temple called Kasar Devi, and people believe that it has some extraordinary positive vibes that can heal your soul and mind. Scientists relate these vibes to Van Allen belt; a powerful electromagnetic field created by the solar wind.
Indeed Almora is a town that radiates magical vibes. Often travellers skip visiting here not realising what they are missing out. Almora welcomes you into a land having strong historical background. It still holds the remnants of the past, and people of Almora take pride in it. Summing up, Almora is a must-visit place and if you ever happen to cross this town, ensure that you spend some time here. May be doing nothing but watching a day unfolding in Almora.
Where are you heading to next? Tell us in the comments and we would come up with an itinerary for you. Also, follow us on Instagram to get unlimited travel inspiration dose every day.