Things to do in Landour | A Complete Travel Guide

About Landour

Landour

Landour is a small cantonment town and a beautiful small suburb of Mussoorie, and a popular getaway from Dehradun and other major cities in the state. If Mussoorie is the Queen of the Hill, Landour is the Queen’s tiara. Despite being close to Dehradun and Mussoorie, which have become overly commercialized and populated, the city has managed to maintain its offbeat, peaceful vibe, and remains largely untouched and less explored. 

With our Landour travel guide, you can discover this scenic mountain retreat on your way and experience a unique mountain destination. 

Location

The city is located in the Dehradun district, only 6KM from the town of Mussoorie, 34KM from the state capital of Dehradun, 58KM from Dhanaulti, and 64KM from Herbertpur. 

Weather

Landour, like its neighboring towns, also enjoys classic mountain weather. Summers are warm but pleasant with colder nights, while winters are chilly and frosty, with occasional snowfall, which could be between three to 15 times within the season. It usually receives more snow than Mussoorie, especially around the northern slopes.

History

Landour used to be a part of the United Provinces and was initially established by the British Indian Army as a cantonment area. In 1827, a sanatorium was built in Landour for military officials and slowly grew into a retreat town. Most of Landour is still cantonment, not necessarily all active army areas. Until the 1860s, Landour and Mussoorie were not legally considered separate regions. Under the 1924 Act, all non-military and non-government buildings built in the area are considered illegal, which contributes to the non-commercialized energy of the place.

Geography

Landour Geography

Landour sits in the second of the five parallel folds of the Garhwal Himalayas and is a part of the Lower Western Himayalas and lies on the east-west ridge, connecting Mussoorie on the western edge. It rises about 1000 feet higher than Mussoorie. The entire area is covered in dense forests of cedar, Himalayan oak, chir pine, blue pine, fir, Himalayan maple, rhododendron, ash, and other alpine trees. The town overlooks prominent peaks like Yamunotri, Bandarpunch, Gangotri, Kedarnath, Chaukhamba, Nanda Devi, etc. The wilderness of Landour is also home to more than 350 avifauna species.

Interesting Facts

During the colonial days, it was common for city planners to give an English, Scottish, or Welsh name to a British-founded town, that referred to their origin/ethnicity. Landour gets its name from an old Welsh name, drawn from Llanddowror, a village in Carmarthenshire in southwest Wales.

Things to do in Landour

Being away from commercialization, it has still managed to hold onto its colonial charm as well as its natural wonders, making for the best destination for naturalists and adventurers. 

  • Plan birding and birdwatching tours in early spring or early autumn when exotic and rare migratory birds flock to the forests of Landour. 
  • Take a walk along the Char Dukan area or stop by Prakash Jams to sample homegrown relishes and more.
  • If visiting in the colder months, don’t miss the “winter line” a natural phenomenon unique to India, and occurs only in this region. During winter, the sunset sky has clear lines of red, orange, and purple, creating a second horizon. 
  • Go for day treks or short hikes in the pine forests or the endless nature trails.

Places to visit in Landour

File:Kellogg Memorial Church, Mussoorie.jpg - Wikimedia Commons

Check out these popular tourist places in Landour for a fun trip – 

  • Kellogg’s Memorial Church – Established in 1903, this Presbyterian church was also a learning center for British residents. The church features Gothic architecture with stained glass windows. Also, visit the Landour Language School opposite the church.
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Sister’s Bazaar – An old market street, this is the small shopping and dining neighborhood known for cafes, restaurants, and shops. 
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • St Paul’s Church – A British-era Anglican church, this site was constructed in 1839 and served as a place of worship for the military. It is still an active church and a popular place among tourists. 
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Lal Tibba – It’s the common highest point for Mussoorie and Landour and offers breathtaking views of sunsets, sunrises, old buildings, the mountain ridges, and the winter line. 
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Christian Cemetery – It is the oldest cemetery in the Mussoorie-Landour region and served as a military funeral ground in the colonial days.
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Ivy Cottage/Ruskin Bond’s House – The ancestral home of the legendary author, this house is not open to tourists but makes for a major landmark of the city. 
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Jabarkhet Nature Reserve – A privately owned forest reserve in the mountains of Mussoorie, housing Himalayan wildlife and offering hiking, safari, and jungle treks.
  • Entry Fee– INR 350 per person, safari and Jeep fares separate.

Places to visit near Landour

Kalesar National Park

Apart from your local sightseeing, you can also visit other places nearby. Check out these equally scenic locales near Landour – 

  • Dhanaulti – A sleepy town on the Chamba – Mussoorie Road, known for towering forests of oaks, deodars, and rhododendrons, great for forest treks or day picnics.
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Kanatal – A mountain hamlet of pristine beauty and raw nature, Kanatal offers breathtaking views and is known for Kodia Forest, and Eco Park. You can also go from Mussoorie to Tehri dam on Tehri Lake.
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Dehradun – Mussoorie’s sister town and the state capital, Dehradun is equally famous for treks, drives, colonial architecture, and nature hotspots.
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Chakrata – A small town in the Yamuna Valley, the retreat town of Chakrata is famous for alpine forests, ancient caves, temples, and waterfalls, to enjoy camping, river rafting, and trailblazing. 
  • Entry Fee– NA
  • Kalesar National Park – A natural enclosure of dense forests and grasslands, housing many endangered species of Himalayan flora and fauna.
  • Entry Fee– INR 30

Places to eat in Landour

File:Naga style smoked Pork ribs with bamboo shoots and rice.jpg -  Wikimedia Commons

Check out these locally popular eateries in Landour to sample the colonial and contemporary flavors – 

  • Café Ivy 
  • Landour Bakehouse 
  • Domas Inn 
  • The Mudcup Café 
  • Char Dukan Café 
  • Emily’s 
  • The Bluetown Café 
  • Zindagi Café 

How to Plan a trip to Landour

You can also plan your personalized Landour trip by selecting the mode of transport, the route, and more. Let us help you with the travel options to the city for a better idea – 

How to reach

By Train

There is no railway station in Landour. The nearest railway junction is in Dehradun, about 35KM away. There are frequent trains to Dehradun from the rest of the state and other states in Northern India as well as other major cities/towns across India. From Dehradun station, you have to rent a car or book a cab to reach Landour.

By Road

Landour is well-connected to the rest of Uttarakhand, Delhi, and other major towns in Uttar Pradesh, and Himachal Pradesh via NH34 and NH44. There are regular state-run and private buses from Delhi, Dehradun, Rishikesh, Haridwar, Roorkie, Chandigarh, Shimla, etc.

By Flight

There is no flight service in Landour. The nearest airport is Jolly Grant Airport in Dehradun, about 60KM away. You can fly to Dehradun from any major town/city in India and from there take the airport cab or rent a local car to reach Landour by road. 

Best time to visit

Landour is pleasant and conducive enough to explore in all seasons. However, the spring-summer months have a more vibrant beauty and you can walk the nature trails, enjoy treks, hikes, birding tours, etc. While in winter you can experience the chilly weather. The best time to visit the city is between March and June, or between October and December, before the extreme cold sets in.

Hotels and Resorts in Landour 

Here are some of the best-rated places to stay in Landour – 

  • Landour Residency 
  • The Tattva 
  • Rokeby Manor 
  • La Villa Bethany 
  • Hustlers Den
  • Ragu Vilas 
  • De Landour Cottage 
  • Domas Inn 
A quick summary
Things to do in Landour - A Complete Travel Guide
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Things to do in Landour - A Complete Travel Guide
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Despite its proximity to too marketed and populous Dehradun and Mussoorie, Landour has managed to retain its eccentric, tranquil air, and remains relatively untouched and underexplored.
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