Located about 92 kilometers away from Dehradun, Chakrata is a quaint cantonment town in Uttarakhand that has a lot to offer. It offers the visitors a time away from the hustle and bustle of city life and gives them more than a few adventurous activities. You can reach Chakrata via Dehradun or Mussoorie. Both the routes pass through surreal mountains of the Himalayas and drop you in nature's lap about 2,118 meters above sea level.
The best part about visiting Chakrata is the fact that you’ll get to see some of the most beautiful places you can expect from the mountains, without the crowds of people or vehicles. The relatively small size of this town makes it a perfect weekend getaway, regardless of whether you want to relax or go on an adventure. Keep on reading our list of fun things to do in Chakrata to know more!
Chakrata is blessed with a lot of green covers and all of it is gorgeous. Once you enter the town, you’ll see that it is a backpacker’s haven. You can find a spot in the forest around Chakrata and set up camp with your own equipment, or you can book a place for yourself in one of the many camping sites.
If you’re planning on having a relaxing trip more than an adventurous one, we would recommend you check out the camping packages available in the area since they will take care of most logistics. You can also ask them to arrange activities like rock climbing and waterfall rappelling.
Where: Koti Kanasar
Price: INR 1,000 onwards
Also read: 6 Interesting Camping Experiences In India
Chakrata has more scenic landscapes than you can imagine, and some gorgeous trails that lead to them. You can decide on whether you want to see waterfalls, temples, caves, or just the entire place from a peak; this place will show it to you. Of course, the difficulty of each trek is variable. So, we highly recommend you speak to the locals to figure out the best route to your destination.
That being said, you can go to Tiger Falls and have a picnic beside the pond created by the waterfalls or see the serene sunset from Chilmiri Neck. The list of places to visit in Chakrata goes on and on. So, figure out what you like best and get going!
Where: There are many local trails within 30 km of Main Chakrata Market
In the last few years, Chakrata has made a good name on the list of rock climbing destinations. You have a lot of spots that make for great rock climbing avenues for everyone from beginners to pros. You’ll find a lot of organizers in the area that have hired professionals to guide and/or train you.
One of the well-known rock climbing spots in Chakrata is the Deoban forest, which is otherwise known for its variety of birds and animals. The best part about this place and all the activities it offers is that the organizers can arrange solo trips, couple trips, group trips, and even office trips. So, if you plan on heading this way, you will be very well covered.
Where: Deoban Forest
Price: INR 500 onwards
Chakrata is one of the few places that have amazing rappelling points, on par with those in the bigger hill stations, without the crowds and noise. Many professional rock climbers bring their own equipment and explore the many spots that you won’t find on a map. However, if you want to research a few spots before you go there, check out Kimona Falls and Tiger Falls.
On the other hand, you also have organizers in the area that have set up their equipment and work with professionals in order to provide the visitors with guidance as well as training regarding the sport. Once you get to Chakrata, a quick Google search or a chat with the locals will reveal the best organizer in no time.
Where: Kimona Falls, Tiger Falls
Price: INR 500 onwards
Also read: Top 7 Things To Do In Uttarakhand
A few skips and steps away from the foggy paradise called Charkrata lies a forest called Deoban. It is a beautiful place with rich Himalayan fauna, snow-capped peaks, and a mind-blowing show put on by several rare, colorful birds. After all, ‘Deoban’ roughly translates to ‘God’s Own Forest’ and you wouldn’t expect less from a place like that, right?
Some of the birds that you can keep an eye out for are Russet Sparrows, Himalayan Woodpeckers, Chukar Partridges, Yellow-crowned Woodpeckers, and Cinereous Vultures. If you are in this birdwatcher’s paradise at a fortunate moment, you might find yourself in the company of all of these birds and so many more. So, carry your camera!
Where: 12 km away from main town
Cycling is one of the most popular activities in Chakrata. Similar to a lot of other activities in this place, you can either get on a cycle and visit the many villages that surround Chakrata, or you can sign up for one of the many organized bicycle trips. The benefit of opting for an organized trip is that you also get to know a lot about the villages you visit.
However, if you want to go on this trip all by yourself, you can visit Makhti, Pokhari, and Jaunsari villages. Once you get there, you’ll find that the locals are very friendly and will give you a great insight into their traditions, customs, and ways of life.
We recommend you arrange for a bicycle for the entirety of your stay in Chakrata. In our opinion, that is the best way to get around and explore.
Located at a height of 2,776 meters, Mundali is a neighbor of Chakrata that is known for its variety of snow-related sports. The mountains of Mundali offer a great amount of fresh snow, making it great for beginners to learn and professionals to have fun. In fact, Mundali has one of the best skiing and snowboarding schools in India, second only to Auli.
However, skiing and snowboarding aren’t all that Mundali offers. While the mountains are snow-capped from November to April, you can visit this place during the summer and autumn months to enjoy the many trails that the melting snow reveals.
Price: INR 1,000 - INR 2,000
Chakrata is home to Lakhamandal Temple, an ancient Hindu temple that is filled to the brim with history, mythology, and architectural beauty. Of course, the main attraction is the temple structure. However, the Archeological Survey Of India found many works of art in the area during their excavations, some of which can still be found on the premises.
As per legends, the location of the Lakhamandal Temple is the same place where Duryodhan from the Hindu epic ‘Mahabharata’ tried to kill the Pandavas as they were staying in the house made of wax. The deity of this temple is Lord Shiva and the temple itself holds a lot of religious significance with the Shakti Cult, the people who believe that visiting this temple shrine will bring them good fortune.
Where: Chakrataon-Mussoorie Road
Chakrata is a small town situated in the heart of Dehradun. While it is beautiful, it is yet to become a mainstream tourist destination. Due to this, there aren’t a lot of fancy, upscale dining options in or around the area. However, Chakrata has a uniquely tasty combination of Indian, Pahadi, and Chinese cuisine.
Once you get there, you can definitely check out the local dhabas and cafes for a taste of local delicacies like Gucchi, which is a wild mushroom exclusive to the Himalayas and is one of the few ‘luxury’ food items in India. They have a very earthy, nutty taste and can be found as a delicacy on their own or as an ingredient in a delicious recipe.
You can visit restaurants like Pushp Restaurant, Dragon Inn, Jeet Restaurant, and Nostradamus to experience the cuisine here. It is definitely an experience you would not want to miss.
Where: Multiple locations in main Chakrata town
Price: INR 200 - INR 1,000
The town of Chakrata is known for its serenity. However, for a few days in almost every month, this hill station turns into a host of colorful, lively, and energetic fairs and festivals. Most of the major festivals are very diverse and will give you experiences that you can carry for your life.
Starting at the very beginning of the year, you can visit Chakrata in January for Maroj, in March for Aathon, in April for Bisu Ki Sankranti, in May for Khainda Sankrant, in July for Paancho, in August for Jatra, in September for Nurai, and in November for Diai. Out of all these, we recommend you to visit Chakrata during Bissu ki Sankranti for the Bissu Mela.
Bissu Ka Mela is a week-long traditional fair held by the Jaunsari Tribe in celebration of their ethnic roots. They gather around in brightly colored clothes and pay thanks to the gods for a good harvest season. After which, they sing and dance the week away. There are a few more festivals like this one. So, you might have the opportunity to add that element to your trip, regardless of which quarter you visit this town in.
Where: All over Chakrata
This quaint little hill station in the heart of Dehradun district is a great place for a weekend getaway. Of course, it might take you longer to get there if you stay anywhere beyond Delhi. However, once you get there, it is going to be worth the effort.
You can witness the beautiful landscapes of the Himalayas that surround the hill station while experiencing a tiny bit of the snowfall yourself. Or, you can walk the length of the town while experiencing the serenity of the surrounding forests. Either way, one thing that this place will teach you very well is to take a moment to stop and breathe. Isn’t that something worth learning?
Also read: Dehradun Travel Guide
Is Chakrata Worth Visiting?
Absolutely! This tiny hill station is the perfect location for anyone wanting to get away from the urban jungles and have a few days of peace and tranquillity. The diversity in the seasons and the different opportunities it provides make it a great place to visit.
What Is The Best Time To Visit Chakrata?
Ideally, the best time to visit Chakrata would be all seasons other than monsoon. This translates to any time between April and June and between September and November.
Is Himalaya Visible From Chakrata?
The Himalayan peaks that surround the town of Chakrata are a uniquely beautiful scenery in summers. However, as the monsoons and winters bring in their clouds, the peaks do play hide and seek with eager visitors in Chakrata.
Is Chakrata Safe In Monsoon?
While there is no imminent danger that arises in monsoon, the entire town of Chakrata does become a little too muddy and slippery. Moreover, the monsoon clouds block most of the views of the peaks surrounding the town. So, we would suggest you avoid visiting the place in the monsoon.
What Is Special In Chakrata?
Chakrata has a collection of around fourteen tourist spots and places dotted in and around the hill station. The best part is, all the attractions are not more than a few hours away and they are great reflections of the culture and history of Chakrata.
How Many Days Are Enough For Chakrata?
If the Chakrata is happening in Delhi or a nearby city then 4 days are enough to enjoy the Chakrata to the fullest.
How Far Is Chakrata From Dehradun?
The chakrata is 87 km away from Dehradun.
Does Chakrata Have Snow?
If you visit Chakrata in winter then you are lucky to witness snowfall.