Dehradun, the capital city of Uttarakhand, is situated in the Doon Valley on the foothills of the Himalayas. The city is known as the gateway to scenic hill stations like Mussoorie, Haridwar, and Rishikesh. Dehradun is also home to one of India's finest universities and schools. The presence of the Indian Military Academy, Wadia Institute of Himalayan Geology, Forest Research Institute, Regional Science Centre, The Doon School, and Uttarakhand Ayurveda University has earned Dehradun the title of Educational Hub of Uttarakhand. And let’s not forget about how the city is blessed with nature. From caves and waterfalls to lush greenery and high hills, Dehradun will definitely take your breath away with its beauty.
As the city is located almost 2100 feet above sea level, you can always expect pleasant and milder weather. So, whether you’re planning a family vacation or a solo trip, you can visit Dehradun any time of the year. And if you’re wondering where to start your trip in Dehradun, we’ve got your back! Below we have listed the top sightseeing places in Dehradun you must explore on your 3 days trip. So, without further ado, let’s dig in!
Dehradun Places to Visit in 3 days
Day 1 Dehradun Places to Visit
- Mindroling Monastery
- Tapkeshwar Mahadev
- Regional Science Centre
- Shikhar Falls
Day 2 Dehradun Places to Visit
- Malsi Deer Park
- Robber’s Cave
- Ram Rai Gurudwara
- MDDA Park
- Paltan Bazaar
Day 3 Dehradun Places to Visit
- Rajaji national park
- Khalanga War Memorial
- Sakya Centre Buddhist Monastery
- Shree Prakasheswar Mahadev Mandir
Lachhiwala, now known as Nature Park, is an ideal place to visit with kids and family. This picnic spot in Dehradun is surrounded by Sal trees, dense forests, and beautiful cottages. Moreover, the charm of Lachhiwala is enhanced by a flowing stream from the Suswa River. The water of this flowing stream is filled in a man-made water pool where tourists enjoy fun activities like swimming and boating.
If you’re a nature lover, the lush vegetation and flowing river will help you find solitude. Lachhiwala is also popular among animal lovers as it is one of the best birding sites in Dehradun. Here you can spend several hours watching different species of migratory birds. You can also hire a local guide to know the ideal place for bird watching.
Lachhiwala is close to nature, so you can easily avoid the hustle and bustle of the main Dehradun city and relax in the fresh air. Apart from bird watching and playing in the water pool with your kids, you can also go on a trek around the woods.
As this nature park is a picnic sport, you can expect heavy crowds during the weekends and holidays. If you are seeking solitude, make sure to visit Lachhiwala during the weekdays. Several cottages, hotels, and Forest Rest Houses are available in Lachhiwala so that you can stay here overnight.
Lachhiwala is situated at Doiwala block on Haridwar- Rishikesh road. It is only 20 km from Dehradun. You can get plenty of taxis, rented cars, and local buses to reach the destination.
Rajaji National Park is one of the oldest elephant and tiger reserves in Uttarakhand. The Rajaji Sanctuary was built in 1983 and named after C, Rajagopalchari. Rajaji National Park is also one of the largest reserve parks, spread over three districts of Uttarakhand, including Dehradun, Haridwar, and Pauri Garhwal. Approximately 820 km long Rajaji Park is the amalgamation of Rajaji, Motichur, and Chilla Sanctuaries.
The park is popular for its wildlife, especially for housing over 50 species of mammals, 350 Asian elephants, and 300 species of birds. The surrounding Shivalik mountain ranges, flowing Ganga river, and dense forests of Sal, Riverine, Glassland, and Subtropical Pine, add more to the scenic beauty of Rajaji National Park. Vividly colourful flowers and shrubs like Sandan, Kachnar, Lantana, Analtas, Chilla, and Acacia make this park a paradise. This natural ambience is another reason thousands of tourists visit the park throughout the year.
Rajaji National Park is a natural habitat for the Asian elephants, Bengal tigers, Leopard, Hyena, Barking Deer, Jingle Cat, Langur, Bear, Sambhar, Sloth Bear, Indian Porcupine, Panther, Nilgai, Goral, and many more. The park is also home to the biggest python race in India. If you love bird watching, the park will offer you hundreds of bird species such as Woodpeckers, Scimitars, Hawk-Owls, Hornbills, Cuckoos, Pheasants, Kingfishers, Starlings, and Babblers.
The jeep safari in this rich biodiversity is another great attraction of Rajaji National Park. In this jungle safari, you’ll get a sense of thrill and adventure while wandering in the wild. However, it’s crucial to get permission from Dehradun's forest department before going on a jungle safari. After all, predators and wild animals are always lurking in the dense forest of Rajaji National Park.
If you love places that hold historical significance, don’t miss visiting the Khalanga War Memorial when you’re in Dehradun. This unique memorial is the only monument in the world that was established by an army in honour of their opponents. According to history, during the Anglo-Gorkha war in 1814, the Gorkhas invaded the Garhwal region and captured the Kalinga Fort. Although the Gorkhas lost the battle, they protected the fort from the British army for over six weeks without any drink or food. Such bravery and will to fight impressed the British army, and they built this Khalanga War Memorial honouring the Gorkha soldiers.
Located about 5 km from Dehradun city, along the Sahastradhara road, the architecture of the war memorial is simple. And the writings on the pillar depict the bravery of the Gorkha War, which will make you feel proud of our history.
However, even if you're not a history lover, visit the Khalanga War Memorial for the sake of its surrounding beauty. The roads to reach the memorial are adorned by tall Saal trees on both sides. You can trek through the picturesque road to reach the memorial at the hilltop. You can also come here by car, but make sure to park it below and trek from there. At the hilltop, you’ll see the place covered with Buddhist flags, which creates a peaceful environment. Also, nearby locals and fitness enthusiasts can be seen here playing or cycling.
Sahastradhara is one of the most popular picnic spots to visit during the summer. The largest waterfall in Dehradun, Sahastradhara, is created from lots of small waterfalls. The water of the falls is not only famous for its beauty but also for its therapeutic value. The water of Sahastradhara is rich in sulphur, which is highly beneficial for skin disease treatment. According to local beliefs, a bath in the water of Sahastradhara can cure any skin disease.
Sahastradhara is popular among tourists of all ages. Even kids can easily bathe under the waterfalls because the water level is not too deep. During summers, hundreds of locals and tourists visit for a picnic or to spend time in nature. So, you can expect a lot of crowds in the summertime.
You can also take a ropeway ride in Sahastradhara. The ride will provide you with a panoramic view of the waterfalls from the hilltop. You can also visit the nearby Sahastradhara Amusement Park with your kids for a fun-filled day. The amusement park has various joy rides, swings, and slides that will definitely bring a smile to your kid's face.
At Sahastradhara, you can also visit two nearby old-century temples- Prachin Shiv Mandir and Tapkeshwar Temple. Both temples are dedicated to Lord Shiva and related to the Mahabharata era. Sahastradhara is approx 15 km from the Dehradun ISBT bus stand. You can get plenty of buses, local taxis, and private cabs to visit the charming waterfalls.
Sakya Centre Buddhist Monastery is a monastic institute known for its impressive architecture, elegant interiors, and peaceful ambience. Originally the Sakya was founded in 1964 by His Holiness, the 41st Sakya Trizin. The monastic institute mainly focuses on offering education in Buddhism and Tibetan traditions.
The Sakya Centre Buddhist Monastery is built on Rajpur Road, which is around 12 km away from Dehradun city. The monastery is constructed as an imitation of a Tibetan Monastery to promote Tibetan culture. The architecture of this monastery follows the Japanese style.
The main stupa of the Buddhist Monastery is approximately 220 feet high. Spread over five floors, the monastery provides a breathtaking 360-degree view of the Dehradun valley. Inside the monastery, you can see elegant interiors and stunning wall paintings describing the life of Lord Buddha.
While exploring the monastery, you can understand the culture and life of monks and learn about Buddhist teachings and practices. You can also offer your prayers to the Buddha statues inside the monastery. The campus of the Buddhist monastery is adorned with a beautiful garden and an in-house bookshop.
Built in the 17th century, Guru ram rai Gurudwara is one of the oldest pilgrim sites in Dehradun. The Gurudwara is situated at the heart of the city, only 5 km away from the Dehradun Bus Station. If you want to learn about the Sikh community, make sure to add this holy pilgrimage to your travel list.
This Gurudwara is built by Ram Rai, the seventh son of Guruji Sri Har raj Ji. Legend has it that Ram Rai was rejected from the Sikh community by his father. He was ordered to leave his hometown, so he came to Dehradun to establish the Gurudwara.
The present building of the Ram Rai Gurudwara is designed in Hindu-Islamic architecture style. The building also has several murals, minarets, and domes that reflect spiritual enlightenment. The walls are decorated with flowers and motifs. You can also see various wall paintings with religious figures.
The best time to visit Ram Rai Gurudwara is during the celebration of the Jhanda Fair. Each year on the occasion of the Holi festival, this flag-hoisting fair or Jhanda fair is organised by the Gurudwara. Devotees and tourists from all over India visit this place to enjoy the grand celebrations. There is also a community kitchen available inside the Darbar. People from all genders and casts are welcome here to eat food under one roof, absolutely free of charge.
Maldevta is popular among tourists for its beautiful flowing river Song, waterfalls, hills, and lush vegetation. This picturesque place is situated in the Raipur area of Dehradun, where tourists come to spend some relaxing time.
Maldevta is more famous as a picnic spot. Many visitors come here to soak their feet in the gorgeous stream, trek in the woods and explore the surroundings.
The best time to visit Maldevta is the monsoon season and right after the monsoon. Song, the seasonal river, is filled with rainwater during this time. The Maldevta waterfall also comes into life during the rainy season. You can enjoy the waterfall or sit on the rocks beside the rover to enjoy the ethereal beauty of this place. You can visit Maldevta any time of the year to have a picnic. However, you might not see the river or waterfall in full swing throughout the year.
Maldevta is a safe haven for adventure lovers. From camping, swimming, paragliding, and trekking to bird watching and photography, there are tons of activities you can try. The Maldevta temple is another great attraction of this place. For spiritual awakening, you can visit the nearby temple with your friends and family.
Before visiting Maldevta, make sure to remember that it is a non-crowded area, so don’t go far away after the evening. As it is situated outside the main Dehradun city, visit early and leave before dark. And if you’ve planned a picnic, pack your food with you as there are no restaurants here.
Shree Prakasheswar Mahadev Mandir is situated on the Rajpur- Mussoorie road, which is only 13.8 km from the main city of Dehradun. The Hindu temple is dedicated to Parkasheshwar or Lord Shiva. The name Parkasheshwar is derived from two Hindi words “Prakash” means light, and “Eshwar” means God. The worshipped Sphatik (Crystal) Shiv Linga is one of the unique things you can see inside the Mandir.
However, the most extraordinary thing about this temple is its no donation box around its premises. It is the only temple in Dehradun where the management accepts no donation. The entire temple is owned and managed by a private owner. Inside the temple, you can see several hoardings where it is mentioned that “‘God gives money to everyone, so don’t try to give money to God.”
The temple is well-managed by the private owner. Every day free Prasad like Kheer, Puri, Halwa, and tea is distributed to the devotees. There is also a Langar where you can eat food for free. There are no shops to buy sweets, prasad, or snacks near the temple. Devotees can only offer water to the Shiva Longa as various pots and water facilities are available. However, inside the temple campus, you can see various Gems, Jewellery, and religious books shops. You can purchase stones or books as souvenirs after offering your prayers to Lord Shiva.
Shree Prakasheswar Mahadev Mandir is open throughout the week, from 9 am to 9 pm. During the festivals of Shivratri in Sawan Months, the temple welcomes lots of devotees under its roof.
Regional Science Centre, popularly known as Vigyan Dham in Dehradun, is a must-visit place for curious youngsters. The science Centre aims to encourage kids to learn about the various concepts of science and technology. There are many attractions available at the science centre, for example, the Technology Gallery, The Himalaya Gallery, 3D Theatre, Taramandal, Science Demonstration Lecture Room, Exhibition on Chemistry, Dinosaurs park, and Library.
The infrastructure of the Regional Science Centre looks extremely modern from the outside. Inside the campus, you can see various scientific models such as Birding Cage, Gravity Chair, Human Eye Model, Perspective House, Dinosaur Model, etc. You can also witness several interesting models of traditional Uttarakhand musical instruments. Also, every day the science centre organises 3D shows to educate children about vast concepts of science in a fun way.
If you’re planning for a 2- 3 days tour in Dehradun, the above-mentioned places must be on your list. From ancient temples, historical buildings, waterfalls, and caves, the city always has something in store for everyone. And not only in the city, but you can also plan to visit outside of Dehradun. Famous tourist destinations like Mussoorie, Rishikesh, Haridwar, and Chakrata are some of the magnificent hill stations that attract people from all over India.