Dehradun, a place known for its natural beauty and serene surroundings, greets every visitor in a special way. All you need to follow is, “When in Doon, travel like a Doonite”. Come, explore like a local:
An Emerging Tourist Destination
Connectivity and accessibility to the neighbouring towns have opened the gateway to excursions, and that is why Dehradun has emerged as a preferred tourist destination over the past few years. Well connected motorable roads have made it easy for everyone to cross every limit and check into the city. Dehradun has been a gateway to “The Char Dham Yatra” and neighbouring hills like Mussoorie, Dhanaulti, Landour, Tehri etc, but with the increase in a number of tourist facilities, it has regained its place of the most preferred tourist destination. There are lots of places to see, stay and eat in Dehradun that are not much known to the tourists.
Travel Trends So Far
The past years have seen a shift in the trend followed by the tourists from a tourist destination to a stopover destination. But with the increase in connectivity to major cities of the country, an increase in a number of accommodation options and exploration of some hidden jewels , the tables have turned and Dehradun has regained its position of the most preferred tourist destination.
Hidden Jewels of Dehradun
Mixed bags of some hidden jewels in and around Dehradun are:
Places to go and Stay
Kanatal – It is a small hamlet situated 44 km from Mussoorie and almost 77 km from Dehradun. Deep excursions through the magnificent town of Kanatal will take you through the apple orchards, pine forest, rich wildlife and small temples. There are a number of accommodation options in Kantal varying from camps to luxury resorts.
How to Reach – You can reach here by air, road and rail. For air and rail, your stop would be Dehradun, which is almost 77 km from Kanatal. Book a taxi to Kanatal or avail bus service from the city.
Chakrata – A small cantonment town, Chakrata is situated 86 km from Dehradun between Yamuna and Tons river, amidst the lap of coniferous and oak trees. The town remains covered under snow during winters, thus making it the best time of the year to visit, however, the beauty of Chakrata can be explored all year round. There are a number of activities in Chakrata that can indulge you in.
How to Reach – Chakrata is almost 86 km from Dehradun. A lot of regular buses ply from the city daily. You can take a bus or book a cab to reach here.
Maldevta – It is a perfect picnic place to explore with family and friends. You will find groups of school and college students bunking classes and enjoying in the stream of water that passes from here. Maldevta Farms is a riverside swiss camp on the outskirts of the city. Get a perfect camping experience while on your stay in Maldevta Farms.
How to Reach – Maldevta Farms are located in Raipur. It is almost 13 km from the Clock Tower, located in the heart of the city. You can book a cab and reach here easily.
Astley Hall – One of the best shopping areas in Dehradun for artwork and souvenirs, Astley Hall is one of the oldest constructions in Dehradun. You will find its reference in most of the books by author, Ruskin Bond. You will find amazing restaurants, some best art shops and shopping stores here to explore.
How to Reach – Astley hall is situated in the heart of Rajpur Road. If you start walking straight from Clock Tower, you will take almost 20 minutes to reach here.
Riverstone Cottages in Purukul – Far from the crowd of city, Riverstone Cottages in Purukul is a peaceful retreat for tourist and locals. A stream of the river passes through the bed of this resort which adds to the charm of this place. You can relax and soak in the beauty of hills in this picturesque resort.
How to Reach – Riverstone Cottages are near Abhimanyu Cricket Academy, which is almost 9 km from Clock Tower. For transportation, you would need to hire your own private vehicle.
Places to eat
Kumar Sweets – A chain of sweet shop that runs in every corner of the city, Kumar sweets is one such name which every local of Dehradun has grown up with. The legacy of serving best quality sweets is being followed since 1951. One cannot afford to leave the town without landing into this sweet shop.
Sunrise Bakers – Known for its bakery and confectionary products, Sunrise Bakers in Dehradun is an upcoming name in this area. It’s Plum Cakes and Milk Rusks are a must-try. The bakery is situated in the narrow sub-lanes of Paltan Bazaar, a famous shopping street. You will find crowd every time you come here.
KC Soup Bar – A very popular and the oldest Chinese fast food joint in Rajpur Road, KC Soup Bar has the best momo’s and soups to serve in town. The place can be easily spotted on your right-hand side while going from Dehradun city to Mussoorie. It is another bunk-place for school and college students.
Maggie Point – As you head towards Mussoorie, you will find a lot of small stalls set up around the corner of the road. These are named as Maggie Points by locals. They serve regular Maggie, tea and snacks, but are very popular among youngsters there. You can go on a drive to Shiv Mandir on Dehradun-Mussoorie road, and on your way back can stop at a joint in a lovely weather to spend time.
These are some very small unknown places in Dehradun, which you will hardly find in any book. They are quite popular among the locals and not much known to the tourist. Next time you visit this town, ensure that you explore like a Doonite as that will connect you more with the city. As they say, ‘there is no left or right in Dehradun, only up or down’.
Have a great trip!