Uttaranchal India » Uttarakhand
Perched within the diverse geographical features ranging from an array of snow-capped mountain peaks and tropical forests, Uttarakhand is a state of natural beauty and some of the untouched and well-preserved natural habitats.
The state of Uttarakhand came into being as the 27th state of the Republic of India on 9 November 2000 and was officially named as Uttaranchal. Later, keeping in view the wishes of a large section of people of the state, the name was changed to Uttarakhand in January 2007.
Being declared as one of the five UNESCO's World Heritage Biodiversity states, Uttarakhand in India occupies an area of 53,483 sq km with a population of over 8.5 million according to 2001 India census. Uttarakhand has a total geographic area of 51,125 km, of which 93% is mountainous and 64% is covered by forest. Dehradun, the rail-head and the largest city in the region, is the administrative and legislative capital of the state.
Termed as Devbhumi or "Land of the Gods and Goddess", the intriguing state of Uttarakhand is divided into two regions called Kumaon and Garhwal. A native of Kumaon region is called Kumaoni and those who live in Garhwal region are called Garhwali. Tibet (China) and Nepal are closest neighboring countries that touches Uttarakhand from the north and east side respectively, whereas Uttar Pradesh and Himachal Pradesh are its closest neighboring states in India.
The entire Uttarakhand has as many as 13 districts that are placed in the two regions of Kumaon and Garhwal. Some of the picturesque and breathtakingly beautiful destinations like Almora, Nainital, Pithoragarh, Udham Singh Nagar, Bageshwar and Champawat are situated in the Kumaon area.
Conversely, Garhwal region of Uttarakhand in India consists of some wonderful and charming districts including the capital city Dehradun and a multitude of Hindu pilgrimage spots like Haridwar, Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi, and other destinations like Chamoli, Pauri Garhwal, and Tehri Garhwal.
With some top most hill attractions like Nainital, Mussoorie, Almora, Kausani, Bhimtal and Ranikhet, the state of Uttarakhand is placed as amongst one of the most frequented destinations of India. Besides, tiger reserves like Jim Corbett National Park (the oldest national park of India) at Ramnagar in Nainital District, and other parks like the Valley of Flowers National Park and Nanda Devi National Park in Chamoli District, Rajaji National Park in Haridwar District, and Govind Pashu Vihar National Park and Gangotri National Park in Uttarkashi District are major appealing destinations that generally draw people fascinated by the charm of wildlife and forest.
In addition to being an important Hindu pilgrimage spot, Rishikesh near Haridwar also serve as preeminent yoga centres of India. Haridwar in Uttarakhand also hosts the famous Kumbha Mela that is held in every twelve years, in which millions of pilgrims take part from all over the country. Furthermore, Hemkund Sahib nested in the Himalayas is considered to be of special significance to Sikh community in India.
So, overall leisure, adventure, and religious tourism play a major role in Uttarakhand's economy. Other areas that boost the economy of the Uttarakhand in India include manufacturing and services sectors.