Mukteshwar is a town and tourist destination in the Nanital district of Uttarakhand, India. It sits high in the Kumaon Hills at an altitude of 2286 meters (7500 feet), 51 km from Nanital, 72 km from Haldwani, and 343 km from Delhi. Mukteshwar gets its name from a 350-year-old temple of Shiva, known as Mukteshwar Dham, situated atop the highest point in the town, on the veterinary institute’s campus. Close to it lie the overhanging cliffs, locally known as Chauli-ki-Jali, used for rock climbing and rappelling, with an excellent view of the valleys below.
One has multiple options to reach the hill station of Mukteshwar. The nearest airport for reaching here is at Pantnagar and the nearest railway head is at Kathgodam, 65 km from the town, from where vehicular transport is easily available from neighboring towns of Bhimtal, Bhowali, and Nanital. The other means of road transport in the city include Share taxis, regionally known as Jeeps, on-call metered taxis and tourist taxis.
This place is a super awesome place for trying many adventure sports as well as a very calm location for doing meditation. There are many beautiful landscapes, dense forests and rich wildlife for photo exploring the place. A list of interesting and fun activities that you can try here are as follows:
- Adventure Sports: Rock climbing/rappelling, jungle day hikes, some of the best sunrises and sunsets, fruit picking, Himalayan village lunches, waterfall splash and a few more activities can make your time super awesome at Mukteshwar.
- Photography: Nature and Wildlife photographers have a very great scope for taking exotic pictures of Nature at its ultimate best in this beautiful hill station. They can spend great time capturing the divine beauty of the Himalayan ranges, the views from the cliff, and the dense forests which has a splendid bio diversity. The jungles spread over a large area of 50, 000 acres and shelters home to many birds and animals and what a beauty it is to capture these wild animals in their natural homes. Mukteshwar is also near to Sonanadi Wildlife Sanctuary which is popular for migratory Asiatic Elephants and the population of tiger here is impressive too. It is a very brilliant destination for outdoor photography, one can find many interesting subjects for shoots like the fruit orchards, lakes, waterfalls with the mountain backdrops.
- Himalayan Gazing: Mukteshwar is a hill station that stands at an altitude of 7500 feet and spreads itself in the lap of the Great Himalayas. It serves as an ideal location for watching the beauty of the Himalayan mountain ranges. One can get a clear panoramic view of the sharp edged and snow clad mountains of Himalayas which spread over 1400 m. This panoramic frame is so divine that one can get lost in them easily for hours.
- Temple Visiting: Mukteshwar is the abode of a saint — Shri Mukteshwar Maharaj ji — who lived at the Top Cottage Temple where his samadhi is. The whole temple complex is a Tapovan and an ideal place for meditation. Mukteshwar temple was built by a pandiya king from the Tamil kingdom during the 15th century. This can be confirmed by local guides who have been living there for generations. Shiva Temple, also known as Mukteshwar Dham, is one of the famous Hindu temples of the destination. Located on a steep hill of a height ranging more than 7,000 ft, the temple is believed to be more than 350 years old. The ancient shrine is dedicated to Lord Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction. Apart from Lord Shiva, Parvati along with her son Ganesha and Shiva’s Vahana, Nandi are also worshipped in the temple. Situated at the highest point in the destination, the prime attraction of the temple is a white marble Shivalingam with copper yoni. The Rajrani temple is famous for housing beautiful stone carved female figures, which portrays a variety of dance postures and moods is also there.
- Heritage Viewing: The Indian Veterinary Research Institute in Mukteshwar is a legacy of the British reign in India. It is one of the premiere institutes in India conducting research on livestock. The tourist can also check out the library and museum inside it. There is a PWD inspection bungalow in Mukteshwar that is known for its colonial Architecture.
- Camping: Mukteshwar provides the best choice to spend your weekends within 300 km from Delhi. One can also look for apple and peach orchards and then go for camping and hiking trails in the famous Kumaoni villages. If you seek the thrill of camping in the Himalayan wild, but are too lazy or just can’t be bothered to carry your camping gear and accessories, your closest experience to real hiking camp experience is situated about 20 kms from the town of Mukteshwar.
- Shopping: One can purchase some local products like Rhododendron juice (local name: Burans), tasty apple jams, and Rhododendron squash from the local market. A place called Kumaon Grameen Udyog in Kasiylekh, near Mukteshwar can be visited for buying wool hand-woven shawls and stoles.
The Swiss Village is one of the best resorts in Mukteshwar for your vacation.