Almora district, a part of the Kumaon division is a district of the Uttarakhand state with its administrative headquarters located at Almora town. Prior to the establishment of the ancient Almora town, it was under the control of Baichaldeo, a Katyuri king. He then decided to donate a large part of this land to Sri Chand Tiwari, a Gujrati Brahmin. After sometime when Baramandal was under the Chand kingdom, at that time Kalyan Chand made the Almora town, a centrally located place in 1568. During those days of the Chand Kings it was popularly known as Rajapur. Even today also the name 'Rajapur' is clearly visible on some ancient copper plates, discovered in the region of Almor. Almora as a separate district came into existence in the year 1568. On the other hand after the defeat of of Gorkha army in the Anglo-Gorkha war and the 1816 Treaty of Sugauli, Almora town was declared as the administrative headquarter of the Kumaun district, formed in 1815. At that time Kumaun district comprised of the entire Kumaon division excluding the Terai district with its headquarters located at Kashipur. In the year 1891 the Nainital district was carved out of the Kumaun district and later Kumaon district was renamed it as Almora district after the name of its headquarter. Earlier, in the period of 1960s Bageshwar district, Pithoragarh district and Champawat district were part of the Almora district.
Geographically, the district lies at 29°60'N latitude, 79°66'E longitude and 1861 m altitude. In the year 2021, there was a total 54.70% forest area of total geographical area. The district encompasses a geographical area of 3,144 sq km. and it is bounded by Chamoli district and Bageshwar district on the North, Nainital district and Champawat district on the South, Pithoragarh district on the East and Pauri Garhwal district on the West. The climate of the district is not so hot in the summer and not too cold in the winter. Most of its rainfall occurs in the monsoon season. The actual rainfall in the district was 1429.7 mm in the year of 2021-2022.
Administration wise, the district is divided into 9 sub-districts, 5 towns and 2,289 villages. The administrative language in the district is Hindi.
According to 2011 census the district has a population of 6,22,506 out of which 2,91,081 are males and 3,31,425 are females. The district has a sex ratio of 1139 (females for every 1000 males). During the year 2001-2011 the population growth rate in the district was -1.28% including -0.94% were males and -1.57% were females. As per 2011 census the major religion in the district is Hindu with 98.19% of the total population. The population density in the district is 198 persons per sq. km. According to 2011 census the principal language in the district is Hindi with 98.74%. In the year 2020 the number of live births in the district was 19,393 including 9,640 were males and 9,753 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 11,252 including 5,557 were males and 5,695 were females.
Agriculture is the backbone of the economy of the district. Most of the lands in the district are use for agricultural purposes. More than half of its population are engaged in agriculture in order to earn their livelihood. The chief agricultural products in the district are rice, wheat, millet, tea, apples, peaches, apricots, plums, etc. The adoption of the new agricultural technologies amongst the famers of the district helps to increase the production of various agricultural items. Every year a huge chunk of revenue comes from the agricultural products in the district helps in its economy to a great extent. The district is scantily industrialised, only a few small scale industries of handicraft are present over there. The district is also rich in mineral resources. Copper, Magnetite, etc are the commonly found mineral resources in the district. Forestry is the extra source of income for the rural people of the district. In the year 2017-18 the gross domestic product in the district was Rs. 7,67,431 lakh at current price and Rs. 6,20,890 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The net domestic product in the district during the period 2017-18 was Rs. 6,73,754 lakh at current price and Rs. 5,48,159 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, At Factor Cost in the district during the period 2017-18 was Rs. 1,12,350 at current price and during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 79,484 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
The district is well known as an abode of several reputed educational institutions. It provides a platform for higher education. Some of its recognised educational institutions are G.B. Pant institute of Himalayan environment and development, Vivekanand Hill Agriculture and Research, Govt. Girls Polytechnic college, Kumaun University campus of Almora, Govt. Law college, etc. As per 2011 census the literacy rate in the district is 80.47% including 92.86% are males and 69.93% are females. The total number of literates in the district is 4,36,497 out of which 2,31,604 are males and 2,04,893 are females.
Pandit Govind Ballabh Pant, a veteran Indian freedom fighter and politician who served as the first Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh from 26th January, 1950 to 27th December, 1954 was born on 10th September, 1887 at Khoont in the Almora district. He was member of the Indian National Congress.
The district has several centres of attraction which allures many travellers from different parts of the country as well as world. Manila, a place located almost 85 km. away from Ranikhet in the district has the famous temple of Manila Devi, the family goddess of Katyuri kings. Literally the term “Manila” means enchanting. The surrounding forests and the Himalayan views create mesmerising scenery in this place. Katarmal, situated at a distance of 17 km. in the north western part of the Almora is famous for the 800 years old temple of Sun God. After the Konark temple in Puri at Orissa, it is the only Sun temple in India. Jalana, situated almost 35 km. away from Almora offers a wide panoramic view of Himalayas and picturesque surroundings. This place is full of variety of fruits such as apricots, peaches, peers, plums and apples. Some other places of interest in the district are Ranikhet, Kausani, Binsar, Shitla Khet, Baijnath, Dwarahat, etc.