Ranikhet is a hill station that boasts of a number of temples. Most of these temples are dedicated to goddesses. The presence of this huge number of temples in Ranikhet can probably be explained by the fact that since this place was previously surrounded by thick jungles infested with many ferocious animals and the local people used to pray to the deities to keep them safe from harm.
When you look for resorts in Uttarakhand in the Ranikhet region, look for one which has a temple or two within a radius of a kilometre or two. This way you will have the chance to get to know some local legends as well. Here are some of the temples in Ranikhet that you ought to visit:
- The Jhula Devi Temple: This temple is the most prominent one in Ranikhet. It is dedicated to Jhula Devi or Goddess Durga. This deity is highly revered by the local people of this region. It is believed by the local people that whatever maybe the wishes of the devotee this Goddess will make sure that it is fulfilled. This temple was built during the 7th century, because the people wanted to pray to this deity who they believed would protect them from animal attacks.
- HaidakhanBabaji Temple: This is another famous temple that is located in this hill station. It was built by a great spiritual leader, fondly referred to as HaidakhanBabaji. He had spent many years of his life preaching and spreading words of wisdom in this region. He had built a total number of 9 temples, of which this is one. There is an ashram facility attached with the temple compound as well which is known as Ananda Puri. Tourists can take rest here. This temple also offers a lovely view of the surroundings.
- Mankameshwar Temple: Pithoragrah is the place where this temple is located. Ranikhet is a cantonment town and hence the Kumaon regiment of the Indian Army is posted in this region. This temple was built by the jawans of this regiment. In addition to the lush green scenery that surrounds this beautiful temple, there is also a shawl factory nearby, which is credited to be one of the finest shawl makers in the country.
- Sun Temple: Also, known as the Katarmal temple this temple of Ranikhet can be reached only by trekking. Head out early in the morning from any one of the hotels in Uttarakhand where you will be staying and travel to this temple which is believed to be about 800 years old! A few smaller shrines surround this temple and the Archaeological Survey of India looks after this temple.
- Kalka Temple: Just near the Upat Golf course is located Kalka which has a famous temple that is dedicated to Goddess Kali. Plenty of tourists and devotees come to this temple to pray here since it is believed to be an extremely auspicious place.
These are the top 5 temples that you will find in Ranikhet. When you visit the hill station, keep a look out for smaller temples that adorn the various corners of this cantonment town!