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Uttrakhand

Uttarakhand formerly known as Uttaranchal is a state in the northern part of India. It is often referred to as the Devbhumi (Land of the Gods) due to many Hindu temples and pilgrimage centres found throughout the state. It borders the Tibet on the north; the Mahakali Zone of the Far-Western Region, Nepal on the east; and the Indian states of Uttar Pradesh to the south and Himachal Pradesh to the west and north-west as well as Haryana to its south-western corner. The state is divided into two divisions, Garhwal and Kumaon, with a total of 13 districts. The interim capital of Uttarakhand is Dehradun, the largest city in the region, which is a railhead. The High Court of the state is in Nainital.

 

Located at the foothills of the Himalayan mountain ranges, it is largely a hilly State, having international boundaries with China (Tibet) in the north and Nepal in the east. On its north-west lies Himachal Pradesh, while on the south is Uttar Pradesh. It is rich in natural resources especially water and forests with many glaciers, rivers, dense forests and snow-clad mountain peaks. Char-dhams, the four most sacred and revered Hindu temples of Badrinath,Kedarnath, Gangotri and Yamunotri are nestled in the mighty mountains. It’s truly God’s Land (Dev Bhoomi). Two of the most holy rivers in Hinduism the Ganges and Yamuna, originate in Uttarakhand. Gurdwara Hemkund Sahib, an important pilgrimage site for Sikhs.

 

Opportunities for tourism are immense in this state, be it nature, wildlife, adventure, or pilgrimage tourism. Uttarakhand has long been called "Land of the Gods" as the state has some of the holiest Hindu shrines, and for more than a thousand years, pilgrims have been visiting the region in the hopes of salvation and purification from sin. Gangotri and Yamunotri, the sources of the Ganges and Yamuna, dedicated to Ganga and Yamuna respectively, fall in the upper reaches of the state and together with Badrinath (dedicated to Vishnu) and Kedarnath (dedicated to Shiva) form the Chota Char Dham, one of Hinduism's most spiritual and auspicious pilgrimage circuits. Haridwar, meaning "Gateway to the God", is a prime Hindu destination. Piran Kaliyar Sharif near Roorkee is a pilgrimage site to Muslims, Gurdwara Hemkund Sahib, Reetha Sahib and Nanakmatta Sahib, nested in the Himalayas, is a prime pilgrimage centre for Sikhs. Tibetan.

 

The major destinations are Haridwar, Rishikesh, Dehradun, Mussoorie, Almora, Kedarnath, Badrinath, Yamunotri, Gangotri, Jim Corbett National Park, Nainital, Ranikhet and Pithoragarh. If you are adventurous and like tough challenges, you can go for high- and low-altitude trekking, river rafting, para gliding, hang-gliding, mountaineering, skiing and many other activities.

 

The oldest national park on the Indian sub-continent, Jim Corbett National Park, is a major tourist attraction. The park is famous for its varied wildlife and Project Tiger run by the Government of India. Rajaji National Park is famous for its elephants. In addition, the state boasts Valley of Flowers National Park and Nanda Devi National Park in Chamoli District, which together are a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Vasudhara Falls, near Badrinath is a waterfall with a height of 122 metres (400 ft) set in a backdrop of snow-clad mountains. Due to its proximity to the Himalaya ranges, the place is full of hills and mountains and is suitable for trekking, climbing, skiing, camping, rock climbing, and paragliding.