Have you ever imagined waking up to views of misty mountains, brushed by the fresh alpine breeze? The fairy-tale-like hamlet of Lansdowne is wondrous in its own, unique way. And you can unravel its treasures when you spend a few days and explore the place like a local.
The quiet settlement of Lansdowne in Uttarakhand, sits at 1706 meters above the sea, on the Garhwal mountain ranges of Himalayas. Surrounded by thick forests of oak and blue pine, the settlement of this town dates back to the early 19th century, as the Recruit Training center of the Garhwal Rifles Regiment of the British-Indian Army. Named after Lord Lansdowne, the Governor General of British- India at that time, this town became a popular retreat and eventually became a tourism hotspot.
How to reach
If you are traveling from Delhi or around, you can hire any of the outstation cabs from Delhi city. The 250 Km stretch from Delhi till Lansdowne through Meerut- Bijnor- Kiratpur- Najibabad, cuts through cities, villages, plains, and a 40 Km stretch of mountains, till you reach your destination. If you are travelling in a larger group you can book an Innova cab from Delhi for a more comfortable travel experience.
Your stay can define how good or bad your trip will be. And if you want to extend your vacation beyond a few days, then it is important that you find a comfortable, yet economical option. There are a few places which deserve mention
The Blue Pine Resort atop a cliff is a tranquil retreat surrounded by clusters of blue pine and oak and views of the valleys.
The Fairydale Resort is a heritage hotel built in the British era and still continues to excite travelers. Their vintage-style cottages, with Victorian décor, log cabin halls, add to its charm.
The Vanvasa Heritage is the perfect place for those who seek serenity for a relaxing holiday. The luxury retreat is a little outside Lansdowne town and lies in the vicinity of the Vatanvasa National Park, Kalagarh Tiger Reserve, and Sonanadi Wildlife Sanctuary.
If you want to see Lansdowne in your own, offbeat way, then you can escape the touristy activities and find your own adventure options. Find and explore trekking trails that stay hidden from the prying eyes of the commercial crowd.
Add a touch of mystery to your expeditions with a tour of the 150-year-old cemetery at the Kitchner Lines. An eerily silent zone, this place holds the graves of war veterans from about a century ago and is believed to be haunted. But if you are a brave, uninhibited soul, then this place could turn into a mystical adventure.
For a romantic day, take a ride or a leisurely walk down the Lover’s Lane, with your special someone. Untouched by commercialization, the rolling hills, and nature trails, lined with alpine trees and wildflowers, surely help spread love in the air.
Take on a food trail of Lansdowne. You might not find too many options like in a regular touristy place but there are plenty of local eateries serving Garhwali delicacies and other Indian food, Chinese, Tibetan, and Anglo-Indian. Get the best of local cuisine like Bhaang Ki Khatai (Hemp seed chutney), Kappa (a green curry), Sisunak Saag (a local green leafy vegetable), Aloo ke Gutke (a Kumauni potato dish), Rus (a local lentil preparation).
Hangout at the Trip-Travel Café on the Pauri Kotdwar Highway, where locals, backpackers, hikers, and hippies, take a break from the road and unwind. This trippy-looking eatery is the right place to find a strong dose of caffeine and nostalgia alike. The vinyl records, old books, colorful bean bags, and the raw, mud walls add a rustic, edgy feel to the place.
And thus, you can turn your Lansdowne trip into an ideal staycation when you turn this place into a temporary home and live like and among the locals.
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