The crowing jewel of Garhwal Hills (Uttaranchal), Lansdowne is an exotic holiday destination for anyone who yearns for mental peace and rejuvenation. Placed at a height of 1,700 metres above sea level, this place got its name from Lord Lansdowne, an erstwhile Viceroy of India. Its salubrious weather and pristine environment make the city an ideal ‘Weekend Getaway’ spot for all Delhites. Located 260 kilometres north of New Delhi in the mountains of Uttarakhand, it takes just 7 hours to reach the city from the capital. It houses the headquarters of Garhwal Rifles, the eminent battalion of the Indian National Army. Endowed with a picturesque landscape, the city’s aura includes beautiful buildings, temples, museums and lakes. A perfect holiday destination for a ‘weekend quickie’, Lansdowne welcomes all its visitors with open arms and promises a visit to remember.
How to get there?
Cabs: Taxis and cabs are available from New Delhi to Lansdowne. Lansdowne is well connected by road through a network of state and national highways including NH24, NH58, NH119 and NH199. For families, booking a cab from Delhi to Lansdowne is recommended since it is convenient and takes lesser time. There are several prominent tour operators and cab providers that provide cabs on this route. For more information kindly contact us at www.gozocabs.com
Trains: There is no direct train from New Delhi to Lansdowne. However, 2 trains leaving from Old Delhi Railway Station (namely Mussorie Express n Garhwal Express) take you to Kotdwar – a place 41 kilometres from Lansdowne. Beyond this place, you would have to book a cab to Lansdowne. Shared cabs for Lansdowne are also available. We would recommend going by Garhwal Express since it runs in the morning. Throughout its route, the train cuts through the gigantic mountains making it a treat for the eyes.
Buses: Travelling by road from Delhi to Lansdowne is much more convenient than by train. Private non-A/c and Volvo buses are available in plenty to travel from Delhi to Kotdwar. They leave from ISBT at a frequency of 3 hours every day. Flight: Lansdowne does not have an airport and Dehradun is the nearest airport connecting to Delhi. From the airport, taxis and cabs for Lansdowne are available costing about INR 2,000.
Where to Stay?
Budget Hotels: Ajanta Guest House, Lans View, Shri Gobind Highway Motel, Vinayak Resorts are the hotels in Lansdowne where you can stay for under INR 1,000 per night.
Mid-Range Hotels: Hotels in Lansdowne charging a tariff in range of INR 1,500 – 2,000 per night include Forest Palace, GMVN Lansdowne, Jadali Guest House, Shantiraj Resorts, The Oak Grave, Mayur Cottage. The ambience of these places is good, especially that of Forest Palace.
Classy Hotels: These are places that would ensure you have a stay to remember. Excellent service quality and food, amidst great locales, the tariff charged here would be in excess of INR 2,500 per night. These include Le Osh Hotel, Blue Pine Resort, The Garhwali Inn, Bright Sunny Pines Resort, Kasang Regency Resort, Lans Castle. Out of these we recommend Lans Castle for its hospitality!
Places to Visit!
Lansdowne is endowed with a natural beauty with its plush landscape and exotic terrain. It also houses some man-made architectural marvels that leave you intrigued.
War Memorial: Located at Parade Ground, this is a tribute to the indomitable spirit of renowned regiment, Garhwal Rifles.
Darwan Singh Museum: Consists of photographs of army, patriots in various wars, certificates and citations signed by the royalty, old uniforms, guns, real medals and weapons.
Garhwali Mess: Built in Jan 1888, it is one of the oldest buildings in Lansdowne and an integral part of the city’s heritage.
Tarkeshwar Mahadev Temple: A secluded temple amidst lush green forests of deodar trees, it is a magnificent sight to feel the calmness and enjoy nature free of urbanisation!
Tip-n-Top Point: It is the highest point of Lansdowne and the view of the Joshimath’s snow clad mountains from there is amazing; best time to go is early morning!
Bhim Pakora: Cute place that has a stone which moves with thumb force but not on pushing by hand. Word of caution: the 2 km road from the main market to the place is badL!
Bhulla Tal Lake: Boating in the lake early morning refreshes and recharges you. You’ll get to see a lot of different birds in the vicinity. The nursery alongside the lake is good for buying different medicinal plants too. Try to walk down from Tip n Top hill to this lake!
Camping in Lansdowne is possibleJ. Get your tents along and enjoy the night with a bonfire and soothing music. However, camping needs military’s permission. It is allowed in the Tarkeshwar Temple area after seeking permission from the temple priest. But the threat of wild animals including bears, boars and leopards is imminent.
Trekking at Lansdowne is easier than other hill stations since the stretches are not that steep. Also, there is a small nursery run by Garhwal regiment; you may buy plants from here!
Nearby Holiday Destinations!
In case you have time, there are places along the Delhi-Lansdowne route that are worth visiting!
Rudraprayag: A popular tourist and pilgrim site, it is 121 km from Lansdowne.
Haridwar: About 112 km from Lansdowne, it is one of the seven holiest cities of India.
Rishikesh: Renowned for its adventure sports like rafting, it is located at 129 km from Lansdowne.
Pauri: A quiet hill-station famous for its calm climate and green cover, it is 57 km from Lansdowne.
Where to Eat?
Gandhi Chowk area is the place to have our lunch or dinner. Momos of Hotel Zayaka and the gigantic Aloo parantha of Hotel Mayur are must haves.
The ideal season to visit the city is during the summers. April – September would be the peak with majority of the crowd coming from nearby cities like Delhi, NCR, Chandigarh and Dehradun. The weather is pleasant and the calm breezes would act as a tranquilizer from the hectic city life.
Ideal Time n Budget!
The ideal time needed to visit Lansdowne is around 2 days. A train or a cab can be taken from New Delhi to Lansdowne and you would be able to reach your destination the next morning. However, more than roaming around, just staying at this hill station would be an amazing experience. On a tight budget, you might be able to complete your entire trip within INR 2,500. However, a realistic and optimum range would be INR 5,000 per person for a good weekend stay at Lansdowne. And if you are in the mood to splurge, sky is the limit 😛