Tanakpur – A Hidden Gem in Uttarakhand

Tanakpur - A Hidden Gem in Uttarakhand

Tanakpur, a quaint town nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas in the Champawat district of Uttarakhand, is a gateway to the Kumaon Himalayas and the revered Purnagiri Temple. This scenic town, located on the banks of the Sharda River and adjacent to the Nepal border, offers a perfect blend of natural beauty, cultural heritage, and spiritual significance.

History of Tanakpur

It was a small village until the first half of the 19th century. The area was completely covered with forests and was home to the Brahmadev Mandi, built by the Katyuri kings between the 7th and 11th centuries C.E. The city was formed in 1880 and was the winter office of the Sub-divisional officer of Champawat tehsil.

How to Reach Tanakpur

By Air

The nearest airport to this town is Pantnagar Airport, situated 98 km away in the Nainital district of Uttarakhand state. Taxis are available from Pantnagar Airport.

By Rail

It is well connected with railway networks of India. Trains are frequent to Tanakpur Railway Station from major destinations of India like Delhi, Lucknow, Kolkata, etc.

By Road

It is well connected by motorable roads with major destinations of Uttarakhand state and northern India. Buses from ISBT Anand Vihar are available to Tanakpur. Taxis and buses are easily available to Tanakpur from major destinations of the Kumaon region.

Things to Do in Tanakpur

There are plenty of things to do in this place to make your visit memorable:

  1. Visit Tanakpur Temple: Pay homage to the presiding deity, Goddess Kali, at the Tanakpur Temple, and immerse yourself in the spiritual ambiance.
  2. Explore Purnagiri Temple: Trek up to the Purnagiri Temple, located atop a hill, to enjoy stunning views of the surrounding landscape and participate in the annual Purnagiri Mela.
  3. Enjoy Nature Walks: Take leisurely strolls along the banks of the Sharda River or explore the nearby forests for a rejuvenating experience amidst nature’s tranquility.
  4. Embark on Treks: Set off on exciting trekking trails to nearby attractions like Banasur Ka Kila and Lohaghat, where you can soak in the scenic beauty and historical charm of the region.
  5. Attend Local Festivals: Immerse yourself in the vibrant culture of this place by attending local festivals and witnessing colorful celebrations filled with music, dance, and traditional rituals.
  6. Indulge in Local Cuisine: Sample authentic Kumaoni cuisine at local eateries, savoring dishes like bhatt ki churkani, aloo ke gutke, and singal, to tantalize your taste buds with flavors unique to the region.
  7. Birdwatching and Wildlife Spotting: Explore the forests and wildlife sanctuaries surrounding Tanakpur to spot a variety of bird species and wildlife, making it an ideal destination for nature enthusiasts and wildlife lovers.
  8. Shopping: Explore the bustling markets of this place and indulge in some retail therapy by browsing through local handicrafts, souvenirs, and traditional artifacts, perfect for taking home as mementos of your trip.
  9. Cross-Border Trade: Witness the hustle and bustle of cross-border trade at the India-Nepal border, where you can observe traders and merchants engaged in commercial activities, providing an interesting glimpse into transnational commerce.
  10. Relaxation and Serenity: Lastly, simply unwind and soak in the serene ambiance of Tanakpur, away from the chaos of city life, allowing yourself to rejuvenate and recharge amidst the natural beauty of the Himalayan foothills.

Nearby Places to Explore

  1. Khatima: Khatima is one of the most important towns of Udham Singh Nagar district of Uttarakhand state and is also one of the business hubs of the Kumaon region.
  2. Nanakmatta: Nanakmatta is an important Sikh pilgrim center which lies on the Rudrapur-Tanakpur route.
  3. Champawat: Champawat is a town and Nagar Palika Parishad in the Champawat district of Uttarakhand.

Accommodation Option Near Tanakpur

Finding accommodation options near this place is essential for a comfortable stay. Here are some options you can consider:

  1. Hotels: Look for hotels in this town offering various amenities and services ranging from budget to luxury options. Check online booking platforms for availability and reviews.
  2. Guesthouses: Consider staying at guesthouses or bed and breakfast accommodations for a cozy and homely experience. These establishments often provide personalized service and a warm atmosphere.
  3. Resorts: Explore resorts located in the vicinity of Tanakpur, offering serene surroundings, recreational activities, and luxurious amenities for a relaxing getaway.
  4. Homestays: Experience the local hospitality by opting for homestay accommodations, where you can stay with local families and immerse yourself in the culture and traditions of the region.
  5. Camping: If you’re an adventure enthusiast, look for camping sites near this place where you can pitch tents amidst nature’s bounty and enjoy outdoor activities under the starlit sky.
  6. Online Platforms: Utilize online booking platforms such as Airbnb, Booking.com, or MakeMyTrip to browse through a wide range of accommodation options, filter based on your preferences, and make reservations conveniently.
  7. Local Recommendations: Seek recommendations from locals or travel guides for hidden gems or offbeat accommodations that may not be listed online but offer unique experiences and authentic hospitality.

Remember to book your accommodation in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons, to ensure availability and secure the best deals.


This town with its rich history, spiritual significance, and natural beauty, offers a unique experience for every traveler. Whether you’re seeking tranquility, adventure, or cultural immersion, Tanakpur has something for everyone.


What is the best time to visit Tanakpur?

The best time to visit Tanakpur is during the months of March to June and September to November when the weather is pleasant, and outdoor activities can be enjoyed comfortably.

How far is Tanakpur from Pantnagar Airport?

Tanakpur is approximately 150 kilometers away from Pantnagar Airport, and the journey can be covered by road in around 4-5 hours depending on the mode of transportation.

Are there any adventure activities available in Tanakpur?

Yes, Tanakpur offers various adventure activities such as trekking, birdwatching, nature walks, and camping in the nearby forests and hills, providing ample opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts.

What are the must-visit attractions in Tanakpur?

Some of the must-visit attractions in Tanakpur include the Tanakpur Temple, Purnagiri Temple, Banasur Ka Kila, and the scenic spots along the banks of the Sharda River.

Is it possible to visit Nepal from Tanakpur?

Yes, Tanakpur serves as a transit point between India and Nepal, and visitors can easily cross the India-Nepal border to explore nearby Nepalese towns such as Mahendranagar and Dhangadhi.

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