Travelling for many is a sought-after escape system. It gives the human body that relaxation and the mind that thrill that it has been seeking for a long time. When it comes to placed to visit, India is not short of them. From hill stations to deserts, plains to rivers, we have it all. However, I am not here to bore you with all the tourist hubs in our country.
If you are a travel freak and wish to explore the unexamined, then I have just the place for you. A small town in Dehradun, Uttarakhand – Chakrata is just the place that everyone is looking for. Hidden away from the eyes of many, the town has maintained its natural beauty, unlike any other hill station. Located at an elevation level of 7000-7250 feet, the journey to the place is a venture on its own. The sights are one to behold. The high top hills surrounding the entire town are a majestic sight. The place automatically brings a sense of wonder to anybody who wishes to visit it.
However, at the same time, it also reveals the hardships of the people living there. Since all the hills are inhabited by different tribes, a mixture of a wide variety of customs and practices can be seen. People lead a peaceful life, smile through the hardships.
As the majority of the hilly areas located at such a high altitude, even Chakrata does not offer its people the luxury of malls and booming markets. Most houses have their own vegetations growing in lands they own. There are only a few tea stalls, serving noodles and their own famous juices such as Buransh Juice. If you’re a person from the plains, or from some coastal region, visiting Chakrata will bring you in touch with their own flavours and recipes. Now, on to some places that you must visit (the reason why you are reading this!). Since Chakrata has an access-restricted military cantonment, if you’re a foreigner then you’ll be facing an incredibly hard time over there. Visits are limited to Indian citizens only and even then, there are certain areas where photography is prohibited.
The area is beautiful in terms of natural beauty. If you are a lover of nature and find peace among the wildness of trees, then Chakrata is the perfect place to ease your soul. The main attractions, and must visit places here include, Tiger Falls. When I visited the waterfall, it was an experience of its own kind. It gets its name from the fact that the water that is falling from an elevation of 312 feet emits the sound of a roaring tiger. It is one of the highest waterfalls in Uttarakhand. A hill station is not complete without some mind-blowing picturesque spots! Moila Danda is one such beautiful meadow, located at an altitude of 2800 meters. The place is filled with ancient limestone caves and offers you a chance to fall in love with solitude.
If you wish to enjoy a beautiful sunset with your friends, family or lover, then Chilmark is a famous sunset point located just 4 km away from the main Chakrata market. It offers the best view of the sunset that will make you want to stay there forever.
There are various temples that add to the ambience of the place. Among them is Manjhgaon which is famous among the people of Chakrata who are devotees of Lord Shiva. There are many more other places to explore in the place, places that locals of the area can guide you to. Make Chakrata your next weekend getaway destination and soak all that you can from the beauty of the place and the hard work of the people. There might be many other hill stations to be seen, offering you the comfort of luxurious hotels and booked taxis to take you to the places, and booming markets to explore, what Chakrata offers you is an inside into the actual life that the people live.
A visit in winters will also allow you to enjoy the snowfall that blesses the town! My visit to the place was one of a kind. As a result of that, I rate Chakrata a 5/5!
About the Author:
Nikita Srivastava (MCM DAV 36)