Garhwal region is one of the two main regions and administrative divisions of Uttarakhand (earlier known as Uttaranchal), a hilly state of northern India, the other being Kumaun. The region includes the districts of Chamoli, Dehradun, Haridwar, Pauri Garhwal, Rudraprayag, Tehri Garhwal, andUttarkashi.
The earliest reference regarding Garhwal and its pride spots are cited in the Skanda Purana and the Mahabharata in the Van Parva. However, it is with Adi Shankaracharya that the name of Garhwal will always be linked, for the great 8th-century spiritual reformer visited the remote, snow-laden heights of Garhwal.
The region consists almost entirely of rugged mountain ranges running in all directions, and separated by narrow valleys which in some cases become deep gorges or ravines. The only level portion of the district was a narrow strip of waterless forest between the southern slopes of the hills and the fertile plains of Rohilkhand. The highest mountains are in the eastern Chamoli district, the principal peaks being Nanda Devi 7816m, Kamet 7756m, Chaukhamba 7138 m, Trisul 7120m, Dunagiri 7066m and Kedarnath 6940m. At Devprayag the Alaknanda river joins the Bhagirathi, and then the united streams bear the name of the Ganges.