While looking for things to do in Uttarakhand, you may mostly come across hiking, camping, skiing, adventure sports and the like. And you might wonder, it Uttarakhand really the right place to go for a family trip? Fret not, the state offers many other exciting things to explore which make it a perfect family trip destination. Here are some of the best things to do with family in Uttarakhand
Visit the Picture Perfect Hill Stations
Uttarakhand is home to some of the most beautiful hill stations in India. All these places offer views of the mighty mountain ranges, a welcoming weather, a spot away from your everyday lives, and make for perfect getaways from families looking to simply relax and enjoy their time in the mountains.
Affectionately known as the “Queen of the Hills”, this is the most popular hill station in Uttarakhand, and rightly so. At about 2000m height, the picturesque little town is just 35 km from the state capital, Dehradun.
While you’re here, the best places to visit are the Kempty waterfalls, Lake Mist and Gun Hill. You can also visit Lal Tibba, which offers views of mountain ranges all along with a telescope. All these are beautiful spots in nature, while the town itself is best explored on foot. Here you will find various markets, wax museums, aquariums and restaurants which are especially renowned for their Maggi.
Such is the simplicity of life here that the Indian-English writer Ruskin Bond has made it his home. Fans can visit him too, if they wish.
This town is based around the mythical Naini Lake, and is one the best spots to enjoy with family. It is believed that the eye (nain) of Parvati fell here while her body was carried by Shiva. This formed the lake, gives the place its name, and makes it a holy pilgrimage site. The Naina Devi Temple is one of the major temples in this area.
While the town is built on the banks of the lake, the other side of the lake is surrounded by mighty, majestic peaks of the Himalayan range, making boating in the Naini lake one of the must do things in Nainital.
For more great views, you can take a aerial cable car ride from one end of the Lake to snow view point. Also, visit the Nainital Zoo to get a glimpse of some rare animals, including the snow leopard.
Lansdowne is one the remote and isolated hill stations – and is best for families who are looking to simply be away from the city crowds (which one often finds in popular hill stations). It was founded by the British Viceroy Lord Lansdowne, during the British rule in India as a cantonment town. This gives the place an ‘old time’ colonial feel to it.
Today is serves as a quiet lonely town surrounded by thick forests, which make for a great excursion to enjoy some forest vibes and spot Himalayan animals and birds, depending on the season. You can also visit the Bhulla Lake, and Tarkeshwar Mahadev, which is another revered temple for Hindu pilgrims.
A must visit in Lansdowne is the Tiffin Top point, which offers magnificent views of the mountain range all around – and is guaranteed to please the entire family.
While primarily being famous for its wintersports, Auli is a paradise if you are looking to see and play in the snow with your family. The same reason that it is considered a skiing paradise, Auli has some of the best snowfalls, and it also makes it a perfect spot to visit with family.
Also what makes Auli fun is getting there. Once you reach Rishikesh, you can take a bus or taxi till Joshimath. From there, get aboard one of the longest cable car rides in the world – about 4kms from Joshimath to Auli. This is a ride with views that you’ll remember for a long time.
For the snow, the perfect atmosphere and the surreal views of mountain vistas, Auli is also a must visit place with family.
Get Up Close With Wildlife
Uttarakhand , while being a hotspot for mountains, is also home to some of the best forest ranges and National Parks for spotting Indian wildlife.
Jim Corbett National Park
The Royal Bengal Tiger
Jim Corbett National Park might arguably be one of the most famous national parks. And rightly so. Situated about 250 kms from the capital of India, Delhi – it home to some 650 endangered species of animals and birds. It also hosts about 600 different species of flora, making one of the most biodiverse national parks.
A safari in the park with the family is an activity which is fun, and helps in education and raising awareness about the wildlife too. While you might have to work hard catch a glimpse of the elusive Bengal tiger, you’ll also find black bears, sloth bears, deer, alligators, gharwals, sambhar deer along with a variety of various varieties of birds and bats too.
More than simply a National Park, Corbett also offers various other activities such as camping, angling in the rivers nearby, picturesque waterfalls. There are also temples and museums nearby, which make it an all round spot to visit with family.
Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary
Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary
One of the offbeat spots in Uttarakhand, situated about 90 kms from Nainital. Binsar Wildlife sanctuary is famous for its flora and forests – and is a perfect family getaway if you enjoy long walks in peace and isolation with your family.
It is also home to over 200 species of birds, reptiles and butterflies, along with Leopards, Chital, Musk Deer, boars, red fox and bears.
You can also visit Binsar Mahadev Temple while you’re here. Another great place to visit with family is Zero Point – one of the highest points in the area. From here you can see the Himalayan peaks of Kedaranath, Shivling, Trisul and Nanda Devi.
Being a lesser known place, there are a few tourists here and some of the best and most luxurious homestays can be found in Binsar to relax with your family.
Find Your Religious Roots in Haridwar
One of the most sacred cities for Hindu Pilgrimage, Haridwar is the city where the river Ganga emerges from the Himalayas.
This makes it a must visit place for the devotees, specially the ghats which are built on the banks. A bath along these ghats is said to purify all your sins from your past lives.
While being a centre to some of the most sacred temples in Hinduism, Haridwar is also famous for its evening aarti, which is done on the ghats and many floating offerings are released to the Ganga.
To learn more about the culture of Hinduism, haridwar is a must visit place with family.
So you thought Uttarakhand was only about adventure. We hope you don’t now. Where will you be going on your next family tour to Uttarakhand?