Lansdowne is a cantonment town in Pauri Garhwal district in the Indian state of Uttarakhand. It is situated en route Kotdwara-Pauri road, NH 119. One has to take a right turn from NH 119 at a place where Garhwal Rifles has put a huge signboard by paining the directions on rock. Lansdowne is 81 km from Pauri and about 250 km from Delhi. It is the nearest hill station from Delhi and can be reached from Delhi by either road or train. The nearest railway station is Kotdwara at a distance of 41 km situated an elevation of only 370 m. Since Lansdowne is more than 1,500 m higher than Kotdwara, the drive from Kotdwara to Lansdowne is quite steep and scenic.
The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport, near Dehradun at a distance of 152 km via Kotdwara-Haridwar road.. The other and better route to reach Lansdowne is from Delhi via Meerut , Bijnore, Najibabad, Kotdwar and on to Lansdowne. It saves about 50KM and the road quality is also good all the way to Kotdwar baring a few patches.
The War Memorial, at the Parade Ground of the Garhwal Rifles Center is an attraction for the visitors. Places of interest around the city are Tip n Top Viewing (offers excellent views of surrounding shivaliks) Santoshi Mata Temple, Regimental Museum (also called the Darwan Singh Sanghralaya), Bhulla Taal, St. Mary's Church, Lover's lane. The excursions from the city are Tarkeshwar Mahadev temple, Bhairav Garhi temple, Bhim pakora (a stone which vibrates if touched).The Annual ‘Sharadotsav’ (Festival of Autumn) is also organized at this hill station during autumn season. Surrounded by thick oak and blue pine forests, Lansdowne has scenic beauty and good surroundings. The climate of the city is pleasant in summer, very cold in winter. Lansdowne can be visited any time of the year In the month of Jan- feb there is snow fall.
The Garhwal Rifles regimental museum, also called Darwan Singh Sanghralaya, houses artefacts from the beginning of the Regiment. The Garhwal Rifles participated in the two World wars among countless other battles throughout its more than 100 years history. All artifacts, including photographs, arms used by regimental commanders, captured weapons, campaign history and other information is displayed in this museum. There are many items, such as medals won by erstwhile Garhwal Rifle soldiers, that have been put on display, this includes the Victoria Cross awarded to Darwan Singh Negi and Gabar Singh Negi.
How To Reach Lansdowne:
By Train Two trains run from Delhi to Kotdwara (Mussorie express and Garhwal express). From Kotdwara, a private cab costs approx Rs. 600. Start from anywhere in India and reach Haridwar. From Haridwar, take a bus to Kotdwara. This will take approximately an hour. From Kotdwara petrol pump near the bus stand, take a private/shared cab to Lansdowne. Shared cab take Rs. 60/person. Shared cabs are also good and are not too crowded contrary to popular beliefs.
Famous Tarkeshwar Mahadev Temple with its special Shivlanga and a kund (a small pond) known as Gauri Kund is situated 39 km away from Lansdowne. People take bath in Gauri Kund before entering the temple. Two other famous temples, Durga Devi Temple and Jwalpa Devi, which are on the Pauri-Kotdwar road are 24 km and 47 km away respectively. Durga Devi Temple is one of the oldest Sidh peeths in India.
Kanva Ashram, a well-known landmark is situated 14 km from Kotdwar railway station. Shakuntala, wife of King Dushantya and deserted by him, is said to have given birth to Bharat in the ashram of Rishi Kanva in ancient India. India got its name 'Bharat' in Sanskrit after Bharat became king following the death of his father.