The Himalayan town of Askot is located on a ridge on the route between Pithoragarh and Dharchula. An erstwhile princely state, Askot has been under the rule of various rulers in the past, including Doti Kings of Nepal, Rajbars, Gorkhas, Chands, Katyuris, and the British. Located at a height of 3,629 ft.,Chiplakot and Panchuli peaks from the backdrop for Askot and attract hundreds of skiing enthusiasts every year.
How to Reach Askot?
Pithoragarh is well connected by a good network of roads with various major towns in the area. The distance from the nearest major town Champawat is 75 km, Lohaghat at 62 km, Munsyari at 135 km, and Tanakpur at 151 km.
The park can be reached by road through Pithoragarh, 55 km from Tanakpur – Pithoragarh, or through Haldwani – Almora at approximately 150 km from Kathgodam.
The nearest railhead, railway station is situated in Tanakpur, at 204 km, from Askot. As of now, however, there are no trains departing or arriving at Tanakpur because of broad gauge conversion up to Pilibhit.
The nearest airport is Naina Sani in Pithoragarh, located at a distance of 60 km. However, this airport is non-functional till date. Another airport is Pantnagar Airport at 118 km. The airport mostly handles chartered flights and invariably some Indian Airlines flights as well. The schedule keeps changing according to the need of traffic. It is, therefore, advised to check with respective airport authorities before planning.
Activities and Sightseeing
The major attractions to see around Askot include:
Askot Wildlife Sanctuary
The Askot Sanctuary, also known as the Askot Muscat Sanctuary is situated 54 km from Pithoragarh near Askot in Uttarakhand. Initially, it was set up to protect the musk deer and its habitat. Some of the other animal species found in the Askot Sanctuary include Himalayan Leopard, Jungle Cat, Pheasant, Serow, Civet Cat, Barking Deer, Brown Bear, and Ghoral.
In the Almora District of Uttarakhand is a small town called Dhanlek, located in Hawalbag Tehsil. This place is the convergence of Gori Ganga and Kali rivers. Dhanlekh is the popular religious place visited by a proliferation of worshippers every year. The Pithoragarh-Fair is organized at the
Temple on the occasion of Navratri.
If you are an adventure freak, here is a to-do list of activities for you. These include Jungle Safari, Camping, Bird Watching, and Trekking.
Best Time to Visit Askot
The best time to visit Askot is the summer season. This is because most access routes are closed in winters.
Accommodation in Askot is never a problem. Besides wide ranging deluxe hotels in Askot, you can also book an accommodation at reasonably priced standard hotels in Askot. These hotels provide a comfortable stay and ensure providing a home away from home.
Besides, you can also go for budget accommodation in Askot or book a stay in economical and low priced guest houses and lodges in Askot.
Do’s and Don’ts at Askot
- Go for hiking with at least one person accompanying you. Make your co-travelers informed.
- Make it a point to get back to the campsite before it gets dark
- Remember to carry insect repellents along with you.
- Try and leave the least carbon footprints.
- Don’t attempt or enter a private property.
- Don’t harass or feed the wildlife.
- Don’t sleep in the same clothing that you wore through the day.
- Don’t leave back any food in natural areas.
Featured Photo by Internet Archive Book Images