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Asia > South Asia > India > Himalayan North > Uttarakhand > Garhwal > Dehradun

Dehradun

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Dehradun is the provisional capital of Uttarakhand state. It is nestled between the Himalayan foothills to the north and the Shivaliks to the South. The town offers breathtaking scenery.

Understand[edit]

Dehradun
Climate chart (explanation)
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Source:w:Dehradun#Climate
Imperial conversion
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Average max. and min. temperatures in °F
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Dehradun is situated at an altitude of 2,200 ft in the Doon Valley between two of the most important rivers in India, the Ganga and Yamuna. It offers beautiful scenery and a moderate (but very rainy) climate in summer, and so is an ideal place to relax and escape the heat of the plains below. The town also serves as a convenient base for visiting the area's many tourist sites.

Dehradun has experienced tremendous growth in recent years, and currently has a population of around 550,000. It is also famous for the Doon School, which is often referred to as the Eton of India.

Get in[edit]

By plane[edit]

  • Jolly Grant Airport (DED IATA) (The airport is 20 km from town. There is direct bus service from ISBT (Inter state bus terminus) to reach here. These buses are run by the government of Uttarakhand, and run every 20 to 30 minutes during the day. The buses are painted red on their lower half and are actually going to Rishikesh, stopping at the airport on the way. Private taxi services are available at the airport (US$40), or hotels may provide their own arrangements.). SpiceJet and Jet Airways each provide two flights daily between Dehradun and Delhi. Connecting flights are available to other major cities including Mumbai.

By train[edit]

Dehradun (IR station code : DDN) is a major station and a terminus in Uttarakhand. It is connected by rail to Delhi, Mumbai, Varanasi, Allahabad, Kolkata, Gorakhpur, Amritsar, Indore, Ujjain and Chennai. Here are some useful trains to reach Dehradun:

Train Number Train Name You may board at You may alight at
2017 [1] Shatabdi Express New Delhi Dehradun
12055 [2] Jan Shatabdi Express New Delhi Dehradun
4041 [3] Mussoorie Express New Delhi Dehradun
2327 [4] Upasana Express Howrah (Kolkata), Lucknow Dehradun
3009 [5] Doon Express Howrah (Kolkata), Varanasi, Lucknow Dehradun
2687 [6] Chennai-Dehradun Express Chennai, Nizamuddin (Delhi) Dehradun
12205 [7] NDLS Dehradun AC Express New Delhi (Delhi) Dehradun
4632 [8] Amritsar-Dehradun Express Amritsar Dehradun
4163 [9] Sangam Express Allahabad Dehradun
9019 [10] Bandra-Dehradun Express Bandra Terminus (Mumbai), Nizamuddin (Delhi) Dehradun

Also see Rail travel in India

By bus[edit]

Delux, Volvo, Semi-deluxe and ordinary Uttarakhand State buses depart every hour from ISBT, Kashmere Gate in New Delhi. There is also an overnight deluxe A/C service run by Uttarakhand Tourism. It is a six to seven hour journey from Delhi. However, the bus station is located about 5–6 km from the centre of the town. If you are coming from Delhi side the trains will generally be more convenient.

By car[edit]

Dehradun is in principle a 5 hour drive from Delhi, but unless you leave Delhi very early in the morning, you will encounter traffic that makes the trip significantly longer. The town is on NH 72A (Chhutmalpur to Dehradun). The road is two-laned, but not very wide. There may be many slow-moving vehicles at harvest times, and pilgrims walking on the road in late July and early August.

Various car rental companies provide cars to Dehradun from New Delhi Airport & New Delhi Railway station.

Get around[edit]

By bus[edit]

Dehradun has a city bus service run by private owners under STA. The destinations are written in Hindi above the windshield. Generally, however, the buses are crowded, so it is better to use other means of transport.

By auto rickshaw[edit]

Auto rickshaws are plentiful in the downtown area. They are not metered, but instead use a fixed rate system. However, as the rate is often not prominently displayed, it is advisable to have some idea of the cost to your destination before taking an auto rickshaw. Otherwise, you are very likely to be charged well over the odds.

By Shared (Fixed-Route) Autorickshaws[edit]

The cheapest way to get around town is via the ubiquitous blue three wheelers called Vikrams. These vehicles are often crammed, with capacity for 8 cramped passengers in the back. The Vikrams are numbered according to their routes through the city. Fare is ₹3-₹5.

  • 1 - Rajpur Road: begins at Astley Road and travels North to the Rajpur-Mussoorie Road Fork.
  • 2 - Sahastradhara/Raipur: begins at Survey Chowk, proceeds eastward to Sahastradhara Crossing, before splitting towards the North (Sahastradhara Road) or East (Raipur Road) depending on the Autorickshaw.
  • 3 - Dharampur, Rispana Bridge: begins at Survey Chowk, proceeds to Haridwar Road and Dharampur, before proceeding through the Nehru Colony to Rispana Bridge.
  • 4 - Doiwala: begins at Rispana Bridge and proceeds to Doiwala.
  • 5 - Majra/ISBT: begins at Astley Hall, proceeds South to Majra and the Interstate Bus Terminus.
  • 6 - Kaulagarh Road: begins at Connaught Place, goes Northwest up Kaulagarh Road.
  • 7 - Chakrata Road: begins at Connaught Place, goes West on Chakrata Road.
  • 8 - Kanwali/Kaonli Road: begins at Astley Hall, proceeds South to Saharanpur Chowk, before going West on Kanwali/Kaonli Road towards Balliwala. The last stop on this route varies between Seemadwar/Indranagar, Anurag Nursery or Vasant Vihar Chowk.
  • 10 - Premnagar: very infrequent, goes West to Premnagar via Kaonli Road.

On foot[edit]

The best way to explore the town is on foot, since it is surprisingly compact. Finding your way around is not that difficult as it may seem at first glance. Rajpur Road is the main avenue and Chakrata Road is also quite an important street. They both intersect at the Clock Tower Roundabout. Walking across town can take up to 30 minutes.

By car[edit]

You can easily visit Dehradun by car. There are many car rental companies.

See[edit]

Robber's Cave
  • The Char Siddhs. Comprised of a group of four temples around Dehradun : Lakshman Siddh (along the Dehradun-Rishikesh road 12 km from Dehradun), Kalu Siddh (near Baniyawala), Manak Siddh (near Shimla Bypass Road) and Madu Siddh (near Premnagar). Small temples in scenic and as yet unspoilt locales. It is commonly believed that visitng all four Siddhs in a single day will fulfill a devotee's wishes.
  • Chetwoode Hall. The Indian Military Academy. A charming little museum housing collections of 20th century military artifacts.
  • 1 Clock Tower, Rajpur Road (Rajpur and Gandhi Roads crossing). Built by the British, this remains the icon of the downtown area.
  • The Gurkha Fort, Tapovan Forest Area.
  • 2 Jaspal Rana Shooting Range. Majhon- Paunda, Via Nanda Ki Chowki, Premnagar, Dehradun
  • 3 The Kalinga War Memorial, Sahastradhara Road. The only war memorial of its kind in the world which was erected by the British to honour their foe, the Gurkhas (or the Gorkhas).
  • 4 Kalsi. Small town located in the Dehradun District with ancient monuments such as The Edicts_of_Ashoka
  • The Museum, Forest Research Institute. Lavish environs and one of the largest institutes of its kind. Guided tours available. Open:9AM-1PM and 2:30PM–5:30PM. Admission free. Museum entry ₹25, covers 6 halls. Photography permitted in the compound but not in the museum halls.
  • 6 Ram Rai Darbar, Jhanda Mohalla. Built by Guru Har Rai's son, it attracts many Sikh pilgrims from the nearby state of Punjab. Admission is free and non-Sikhs are welcome.
  • 7 RIMC (Rashtriya Indian Military College). RIMC is one of the finest schools in India for training young men to become a part of the Indian Armed Forces
  • 8 Robber's Cave (Also known as Guchchu Pani) (situated at a distance of eight km from the city center). Robber's cave is a beautiful picnic spot. On display here is one of nature's strange phenomena; a stream of water goes underground here and reappears a few metres away. The cave is surrounded by hills and is a beautiful getaway for those looking for peace and quiet of the hills.
  • Sai Darbar Temple, Rajpur Road. This place of worship holds a high spiritual value, and is thus visited by tourists across the country.
  • 9 Sahastradhara. Around 14 km from Dehradun is the cold Sulphur water spring called Sahastradhara. The spring is believed to have exceptional medicinal value and the dripping caves and a bath in the Baldi River near the spring are said to rejuvenate the body and soul.
  • 10 Tapkeshwar Temple, Garhi Cantt. An ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, Tapkeshwar is situated on the banks of a rivulet.
  • 11 Tapovan, Rajpur Road. According to legend, Guru Dronacharya had done penance here.
  • 12 Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology. Another place worth a visit is the Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology. It is the best center on Himalayan geology in the country and has done some pioneering work in the field. A museum displaying the geological diversity of the sub-continent is the center of attraction here and a must see for all those visiting the institute.

Do[edit]

  • Dehradun is a base for trekking and adventure tourism, and many people just stay overnight in the city before heading into the Garhwal Hills.
  • Picnic - Pack a hamper of food and drinks and picnic at Sahastradhara, on the banks of the Baldi River. The mineral waters here are pure and clean. It is a 30 minute drive from the city of Dehradun. You can also rent a cycle from Hotel Madhuban. It takes a little over an hour to bike down.
  • After a hard day's sightseeing, drive down to the village of Dakpathar 45 km away. The sparkling waters of the Yamuna makes this the perfect spot to relax. The neat little GMVN Tourist Complex is located inside the village. It has a good restaurant and a small swimming pool.

Buy[edit]

  • Alaya Design Studio, 94, Old Rajpur, Near Shahenshahi Ashram, Dehradun (Located in Old Rajpur, accessible by going uphill from Dakpatti Rajpur market or from Old Mussorie Road, turn towards Shahenshahi Ashram), +91 135 6537205. Mon-Sat; 10AM to 7PM. A design led social enterprise, Alaya Design Studio works with Craft and Skill based artisan communities in the state of Uttarakhand. At their retail outlet based in 94, Old Rajpur, one can find contemporary designs of Crafts and Furniture in locally available materials such as Bamboo, Wood, Handcrafted Copper, Natural fibers etc.
  • Astley Hall, Rajpur Road - a complex full of interesting, and good value shops and restaurants.
  • Basmati rice - the Dehradun area is famous all over India & the world for its fragrant Basmati rice, but you can probably buy bags of it at your local Indian store so don't bother buying any here.
  • Book World, 10-A Astley Hall (at Astley Hall), +91 135-2655845. Another great bookshop where you can get practically any book you want.
  • The English book Depot. 15, Rajpur Road - the best bookshop for miles, with an excellent stock of fiction, travel literature, magazines and newspapers.
  • Brightly coloured, hand made woollen items made by tribal communities in the nearby Garhwal Hills.
  • Himalayan Weavers use natural dyes to produce hand-woven shawls, stoles, scarves and throws of wool, eri silk and pashmina. Their aim is popularize the use of environmentally friendly natural dyes and provide a market for craft products made in the Himalayan region. They have a showroom in Chowk Bazaar (Rajpur). They also have a showroom 8 km from Mussoorie on the Mussoorie-Dhanaulti Road. Rajpur: 01352733113, Mussoorie: 0135-2115282 and 9759009830. [11]
  • Khukris - the traditional knives that Dehradun is famous for. In fact the sword used in the film "Gladiator" was designed and made in Dehradun. Small shops in Dehradun stock them.
  • Paltan Bazaar - a good place to pick up the local variety of Basmati Rice, and hand made woollen garments made by local tribal communities.
  • Rajpur Road - the most popular shopping area.

Eat[edit]

  • Black Pepper Bar & Restaurant, Astley Hall, Rajpur Rd. One of the finest bar and multicuisine restaurant in Dehradun in a soothing ambience.
  • Ellora's. Ellora's amazing cookies and plum cake
  • Hotel President, 6 Astley Hall, Rajpur Rd. Hotel with new restaurant, bar, coffee shop. Pavilion is the multi cuisine restaurant in the hotel providing you with a range of Indian, Chinese and Mughlai delicacies. The colonial styled restaurant overlooks the scenic mountain slopes. Polo Bar in the hotel premises keeps a good stock of foreign liquors.
  • Kumar's, Rajpur Road. This well-known multicuisine restaurant serves Chinese, Indian and Continental food.
  • Lhasa. One of the best restaurants for authentic Tibetan fare located on Rajpur Road close to the Old Mussoorie Road diversion. This is several km out of town. Call them at 2733274 for bookings or to order a pick-up meal. No home deliveries.
  • Moti Mahal, City Bus Stand, Rajpur Road. Famous for North Indian fast food. Try the samosa or bread pakora.
  • McDonalds, (2653086) Astley Hall, Rajpur Road. Serves the usual fast food, burgers, wraps etc. No McDelivery or McShakes available. Try the Shahi Paneer Pan, the latest innovation of McDonalds India.
  • Maggie Point. A series of small restaurants situated in between Dehradun and Mussoorie famous for their Maggie. One can also have the beautiful view of Dehradun city from up there.
  • Nanking Restaurant, 361/1 Ballupur Road. Multi Cuisine family restaurant suited for Families and Teenagers. Serve Indian, Chinese, Tandoori & Continental cuisines. The menu has wide range considering both Vegetarian and Non Vegetarian delicacies. Online table booking facility with 10% discount on every food item. Also provides free home delivery facility in Dehradun City. Call 2531900, 3290919.
  • 1 The Orchard, 3-B, Dak Patti, Rajpur, Dehradun (close to the MDDA Rajpur Park near Jakhan), +91 9837733111. Restaurant with scenic views nestled on the side of the mountain overlooking verdant valleys. Decent food. Tibetan, Thai,Chinese, food is served here.Quite place with good ambiance and delicious food.
  • Pizza Hut. On Rajpur Road you can find one Pizza Hut and a good place to eat out
  • Punjab Restaurant, 1- Patel Market , Rajpur Road, Dehradun (Near Clock Tower , Opposite Windlass Shopping Complex), +91 135 2652697, +91 135 2650303. One of the best restaurants in town which provides Indian (like home cooked food)& Chinese food.
  • Rajpur Road. It has an abundance of eateries from McDonalds to Nirula's to roadside buffets... the food is great. Try Tibetan dishes available opposite the Parade Ground, or get some cheap but delicious vegetarian thalies near the station.
  • Tibetan market. Great momos (steamed buns, filled with meat).
  • Udipi, Lytton Road. Famous for South Indian food. Start off with piping hot idlis, and move on to crispy dosas. Round off the meal in style with strong filter coffee.
  • Vatika, 97, Rajpur Road. A good multi-cuisine restaurant serving tasty and wholesome food. (A restaurant of Hotel Madhuban)

Drink[edit]

  • Rajpur Road has many bars. Try a strong Tibetan drink called chang available in Rajpur (7 km away from clock tower).
  • Barista. The English Book Depot, 15 Rajpur Road. Excellent coffee, iced tea and pastries.
  • Cafe Coffee Day. Rajpur Road. Excellent coffee and pastries.
  • Head Over Heels Bar, 97 Rajpur Road. A good range of drinks and snacks.
  • My Wife's Place. In Rajpur Road you can find this and well known for it's North Indian food, especially a varaity of kebabs and mughlai dishes
  • President Hotel and Bar The finest bar in the downtown. However some retired Army officers and serving officers like to Jam out in DSOI, (To try this out either you have to be an Army officer or his guest. :) )
  • Shipra Bar. This bar is the part of the Great Value hotel and is reasonably OK.

Sleep[edit]

  • There are quite a few hotels in Dehradun, with the best options being located on Rajpur Road. The city does not have a five-star hotel yet. However, Mussoorie (34 km uphill) has quite a few top-end options.
  • Sharma Villa, Tunwala, Raipur Road ,Dehradun (about 10 kilometer from railway station via Dehradun-Haridwar highway). This is an elegant home stay. A family run bed and breakfast just outside Dehradun on Dehradun - Haridwar highway. On requests , meals could be arranged. A peaceful, comfortable place to stay.

Budget[edit]

Mid-range[edit]

Connect[edit]

There are many internet cafes scattered throughout the town. All the hotels listed above have internet access. There are many iways in the city.

  • Computer Base, Windlass Shopping Centre, Rajpur Road.
  • Reliance World, 56, Rajpur Road. Tel: +91 135 309-4844
  • Sify iway, 20, Raj Plaza, Rajpur Road (Tel: +91 135 309-8880); Anekant Place; Arhat Bazaar; Balliwala Chowk; Capri Mkt; Chakrata Road; Dav College Road; Deeplok Colony; Gandhi Road; Jakhan; Prem Nagar; Race Course; Swaraj Shopping Complex; 18 A, EC Road; St. 12, Arshiwad Enclave; 8, New Road; Ballupur Road; 42 Indira Nagar; Clement Town; 155, Saharanpur Road.

Go next[edit]

  • There are innumerable tourist towns and sites that are well connected to Dehradun.
  • Yamunotri
    • Chakarata - unspoilt views (restricted area for foreign nationals).
    • Harkidun - great trekking destination with picture postcard views. all round.
    • Haridwar - A sacred Hindu site on the Ganges - a little over one hour by train or road.
    • The Himalayan foothills - beautiful scenery.
    • Jaunpur - stunning villages in this area.
    • Mussoorie - A famous hill station noted for its scenic beauty.
    • Nagtibba (ten thousand ft) - tribal communities.
    • The Rajaji National Park - Located between Haridwar and Rishikesh.
    • Rishikesh - The Char Dham Yatra (Four Shrines Sacred Journey) ideally begins from this sacred location.
    • Sahastradhara - a hot spring resort.


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