Binsar A Bird Century
Binsar A Bird Century
A perfect refuge for those who crave for solace away from the humdrum of the cities and crowds, this picturesque and quiet little hamlet lies tucked away in the Kumaon Himalayas. Nestled in a beautiful valley, the village is a trekker's paradise, where exploring meadows and dense pine flanked pathways is as dreamy as it sounds. Its main attraction is the Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, spread over 300 kms, giving stunning views of renowned Himalayan summits such as Shivling, Kedarnath Peak, Trisul and Nanda Devi. It is a haven for bird enthusiasts, where species such as forktail, parakeets, nuthatches, blackbirds, laughing thrush, monal, magpies, eagles, koklas, woodpeckers and Eurasian jays can be observed. Its vast habitation of flora and fauna includes leopards, Himalayan goral, chital, musk deers, Sumatran serows, jungle cats, wild boars, black bears, red foxes, red giant flying squirrels and many more. Binsar in particular has no restaurants, but one can always head to Almora, which is 33 km away for a good choice of food. Some ideal places to stay here are Kinner Villa, Kasaar Jungle Resort, Idyllic Haven Homestay, Binsar Eco Camp and Club Mahindra Valley Resort which cater to everyone's range of desired comfort and affordability. Binsar can easily be reached via road, train or air. However all modes of transport besides bus or car drop one off very far from Binsar.
Best Time To Visit
From adventure activities to beautiful vistas, from orchards to meadows, from panoramic Himalayan views to mumbling streams – Binsar is an encapsulation of what nature lovers dream of. With unique species of birds chirping around from every nook and corner to having an actual Wildlife Sanctuary – you are easily covered.
Also, there are many popular tourist destinations nearby. Further, Binsar has gained popularity as a pilgrimage destination. However, there is a lot more to do when you make a Binsar trip.
History & Mythology
The Summer capital of the erstwhile Chand Dynasty, Binsar has a prominent place in the history of the Kumaon Region. The ancient Bineshwar Mahadev Temple is a source of pride for the residents.
Binsar translates to “Without a Head.” It is believed that a battle ensued between King of Binsar and the local deity, Golu Devta. In the battle, Golu Devta was beheaded. And, people believe that his trunk fell at Gairad Dana Golu near Binsar National Park and his head at Kaparkahan near Binsar. Both these places have the ancient temples of Golu Devta.
Places to visit in Binsar
Zero Point Situated inside the Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary, the Zero Point is right at the top of a short trek through wilderness. Once at the top you would be engulfed on all sides with a panoramic view of the Himalayan ranges including the eminent peaks near and far like Nanda Devi, Kedarnath et al. The sheer magnanimity of the view at the top is enough to leave one speechless, and to top that the adjacent wilderness provide the perfect essence of calm and silence to take in the majestic view.
Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary With a relatively smaller expanse with respect to other national parks and sanctuaries, Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary boasts of a flora and fauna diversity which is denser than any other sanctuary India. Hence one can easily spot the likes of leopard, jungle cat, Himalayan bear etc. which makes this a very promising tour for the ones out there who just love to catch a glimpse of the wild. This sanctuary is also heaven for any bird watcher as it takes pride in providing shelter to more than 200 different species of birds. The jungle safari through Binsar is the perfect activity to go on to with your family as you rummage through nature to find its gems together.
Bineshwar Mahadev Temple This shrine was built by King Kalyan of the Chand dynasty who used this hamlet as their summer capital. The temple was built in the 13th century and has paintings and carvings depicting the culture of the period. If you want a spot of quiet and peace to enjoy with your family, this temple provides the perfect place and opportunity to do so along with brushing up on the culture and heritage of the time.
Kasar Devi Temple The shrine, dedicated to the local deity Kasar Devi gained popularity in the nineteenth century when Swami Vivekananda sat to meditate on his way to attain the spiritual realms. Since then the temple has turned into a major crowd puller in lieu of the beautiful architecture and the aesthetic ambience supplied by the pine forest all around.
Golu Devta Temple Situated around 5 kms away from the main gate of the Binsar Wildlife Sanctuary the Golu Devta Temple is a unique shrine devoted to Golu Devta, the deity of Kumaon, where the devotees, instead of the usual offerings of sweets and incense offer brass bells on which their wishes tied after being written on a piece of paper. This temple is a must visit if you are on a holiday because of the feel good ambience and the rich cultural heritage of the place.
Khali Estate Binsar Home to the former commissioner of Kumaon, Henry Ramsay, the estate is filled with lush green lawns and sparkling pine canopy which makes it an ideal picnic spot or to just sit and relax. One can also go on short treks nearby to add a little bit of adventure to a relaxing day.
How To Reach
By Air The nearest airport to Binsar is Pantnagar, which is 127 km away.
By Bus Binsar is well connected by roads to all prominent towns - Almora (26 km), Nainital (90 km) and Haldwani (120 km). Regular buses to Almora are available from the ISBT at Anand Vihar, New Delhi.
By Rail The nearest rail head to Binsar is Kathgodam, at a distance of 116 km. One can take Ranikhet express (overnight journey) from Delhi to reach Kathgodam.