Pithoragarh is a district and town in the northern state of Uttaranchal, India. The location of the town is amidst four hills namely, Chandak, Dhwaj, Kumdar and Thal Kedar. It lies in the centre of Soar Valley of the region. It was anciently an abode of the deities with glistening cascades, gushing glaciers, natural reservoirs, vast vegetation with alpine meadows, meandering lakes and swift rivers. The temples and forts from the times of the Chand rulers are a treat for the archaeological enthusiasts. The area of Pithoragarh is dotted with little villages. The Himalayan peaks of Panchchuli, Nanda Devi and Nanda Kot are clearly visible from the town of Pithoragarh.
The following are some of the interesting places in and around Pithoragarh town:
This place is distanced at 5 kilometers from Pithoragarh. It is believed that a Hindu goddess had killed two demons Chand and Mund at this place, after which the area was named Chandghat. Chandag is a corrupted form of Chandghat. Manu temple in Chandag is worth a visit and there is also a well-known leper’s asylum in this area.
This fort is situated on a hill top, on the outskirts of Pithoragarh town. It was built by the Gorkhas in the year 1789.
This is a cave temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, at a distance of 3 kilometers from Pithoragarh.
This park was built by the Indian military to commemorate the soldiers who were killed in Kashmir. There is a small canteen in the park for knick knacks. This park is visited by the locals and other tourists for New Year celebrations.
It is a cave temple that is accessible through a narrow tunnel, which opens up to a wide cave. Over 200 stairs lead the pilgrims downwards, to the location of the deities. There are several stone carvings of Hindu Gods and Goddesses in the caves. It is said to be an abode to 33 Crore Gods and Goddesses, associated with Hindu mythology! It is a one day journey from Kausani to and fro.
Kamakhya Devi Temple
This temple is located atop small hills. The view of the valleys is quite mesmerizing from this point.
The Askot Sanctuary is a home to mountainous wildlife such as snow leopards, Himalayan black bears, musk deer, snow cocks, tahra, bharals, monals, chirs, koklas, pheasants and chukors. This sanctuary is also dotted with various temples.
Pithoragarh is a popular stoppage point for pilgrimage treks to Kailash, Lake Mansarovar and Om Parvat. Hindi is the commonly spoken language in the town. A novel dedicated to the town, was written by an American author called ‘From Pithoragarh to Pittsburg’, who was engulfed by the beauty of the region. The access to Pithoragarh is from the plains of Haldwani and Tanakpur, at a distance of about 150 kilometers. It is an ideal town for mountaineers, daring trekkers, botanists, pilgrims, adventure seekers, sight seers and water sport enthusiasts, rafting on the dangerous river courses!