The Uttarayani Fair

[tabs][tab title=”Overview”]The dark month of the winter solstice is also known by its literal translation as the “Kala Maheena”. It is considered to be an inauspicious month and one where no trade or launches happen.

At the Sun Temple, one hour from Nayalap, the first rays of the sun will fall exactly through a hole in the cupola of the temple on the idol of Surya inside the temple. It is attended by many locals and pilgrims. Being one of the few Sun Temples in India, the temple is a center of many rituals and festivities on this date.

The Uttarayani fair starts on this date and ends on 21st January. The week is marked by the trade of local Kumaoni goods including traditional warm woollen blankets, bamboo carpets, mats, herbs and spices. Bhutia puppies, kept as pets in mountain villages and for protection, are also bought at the fair. Craftsmen come from remote villages to sell their goods.

Along with this, local dances and songs by folk artists are also performed. They sing Jhoras, Chancharis and Bhairas.

To travel to see both the temple during this time and the fair, you can follow the following route:

  • Day 1: Reach Nayalap from wherever you are.
  • Day 2: Visit the Uttarayani Fair at Bageshwar. Go shopping and return to Nayalap in the evening
  • Day 3: Leave for home or any further destination in your plans.


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Book your stay in a quintessential Himalayan village connected by road. The houses are still made of stone. You still know where your milk comes from. The crops grown are grains that are still local to the land. And anyone you meet will invite you home for tea. This is a true Himalayan village – one that gives you all the space in the world and can still make you feel that you’re in a world of your own.

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