Cheap Flights to Dehradun
This city is the capital of Uttarakhand and lies in the Doon Valley between the Siwalik Mountain Range and the foothills of the Himalayas, a location that delivers truly stunning scenery. While a gateway to nearby places such as Haridwar or Himachal Pradesh, the city has many attractions of its own to entice visitors to stay for a few days or longer. The history of the town and region has become a confusing mix of fact and mythology and is closely tied to the myths of Ramayana and Mahabharata, with many ruins thought to be at least 2,000 years old. The name Dehradun comes from when Shri Ram Rai set up his "dera" (camp) in the "dun" (valley) in 1676.
Things to do
The best way to see the compact centre of Dehradun is on foot as the neat layout is a leftover from the days of British rule. Rajpur Road and Chakrata Road are the main streets while Paltan Bazaar is the place for souvenir shopping. These all come together at the Clock Tower Roundabout: a popular meeting point.
There are many thriving Buddhist communities in the area -- communities that centre on the Mindrolling Monastery. Everything in this monastery is on a grand scale with its Great Stupa believed to be the tallest in the world at 60 m high. The shrine rooms are full of beautiful Tibetan relics and art.
Ram Rai, responsible for the town's naming, was the son of the seventh Sikh guru, Har Rai. The Ram Rai Darbar is his unique mausoleum. Made of white marble, its interiors are covered with elaborate paintings, while smaller tombs in the garden house his four wives.
- A stately reminder of the Raj
The building which houses the Forest Research Institute Museum is left from the days of British rule and is larger than Buckingham Palace. It was built in the 1920s and features Mughal towers, Roman columns, quadrangles and cloisters. As well as being a museum it's where India's forest officers are trained.
Calendar of Events
The festivals and fairs of Dehradun are seen as a way of both sharing and preserving its cultural traditions. Some have become so well-known they attract visitors from across the globe.
Jhanda Mela. Celebrated on the 5th day after Holi at the end of Winter, the Jhanda Mela honours Guru Ram Rai and takes place at his mausoleum. The hoisting of a flag starts these celebrations which gather pilgrims from across the province.
Tapkeshwar Mela. The date of this festival moves every year but is held on the eve of Shivaratri. It's a colourful event, at which you can seek divine intervention in your life from Lord Shiva.
Bissu Fair. The Bissu Fair honours the traditional cultures of the region's different tribes and takes place at the Jhanda Ground in Dehradun. It also celebrates the local community's happiness at a successful harvest.