I Took A Dream Trek To The Valley Of Flowers In Uttarakhand & Here’s Everything About The Route!

by Contributor
by Contributor 2200

My name is Mayank Singhal and I am a Delhiite. I’m an avid traveller  and I love to explore new places in India and abroad. I have been an analytics professional for the last 10 years but that did not stop me from travelling. Travelling is oxygen to me. It detoxifies my body. So far, I have travelled to nine countries and more than 25 Indian destinations. Mostly I have travelled solo or with groups, or as a budget traveller that helps me keep my expenses as low as possible. After a lot of planning, I ended up finalising the Valley of Flowers trek post lockdown, keeping in mind the amazing weather. So for all of those who are planning to go ahead with this one, here’s a head start! 

Valley of Flowers is best known for its meadows of epidemic alpine flowers. It is located deep inside Uttarakhand in the Chamoli district. A UNESCO heritage site, it is home to thousands of Himalayan wildflowers. The valley is covered with waterfalls, rivers, and breathtaking mountains and the best time to visit is, monsoons. It is open from late June to mid-September and it is closed for the rest of the year. The locals suggest July and August as the best time to travel when the flowers bloom.

Here’s Why I Chose Valley Of Flowers Trek

Sitting on my couch, the traveller in me desperately wanted to go on a trek. It was the evening of July 4 and I got a notification that Valley of Flowers is officially open for tourists. And that’s it! I started reading more and quickly signed up for this one. 

Day 1 Dehradun-Joshimath 

On July 13, I took a flight to Dehradun from Delhi. You can also opt for a bus directly to Rishikesh which takes about 7 to 8 hours. From Dehradun, you will have options of taking a private cab or shared cabs and buses which are slightly cheaper options. I took a private cab to Joshimath via Rishikesh which cost me around ₹15000 for four days and it took me 8 to 9 hours to reach Joshimath, covering a distance of 250kms. The view throughout the way was a cherry on the cake. My driver was a catch. He obviously, had a lot of stories and experiences to share. Doesn’t it make the journey much more interesting? I was too lucky to have a companion like him, makes your journey more enjoyable.

Also read: Weekend Getaway From Mumbai To The Valley Of Flowers, Kaas Plateau In Satara

 

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Anyway, moving ahead, I stayed the night at The Tattva. It was such a cozy property and costed me around ₹4000 per night. However, if you don’t want to spend a big amount on your stays, then I would suggest you opt for dorm rooms or cheaper hotels. 

Day 2 Joshimath – Ghangaria

On 14th July, before heading to Govind Ghat, I covered Narsingh Mandir in Joshimath dedicated to Lord Vishnu. It is said, when the temple of Badrinath Mandir is closed during the winters, the deity is worshipped at Nar Singh. So, I would suggest you visit the temple, early in the morning and enjoy the view of clouds covering the mountains. 

I drove to Govind Ghat, in about one hour and left my cab there itself. Further, took a cab for ₹600 for covering the first 4km to Bhundar. There are also shared cabs available which are cheaper. After covering the bridge, there is a check-post, wherein, you will be required to share your RT-PCR negative report and other personal details. 

And here it starts! The trek distance is about 10km. I started my trek exactly at 9:45 hours and the weather was really good. For the first 10 minutes, it seemed easy, and I was just warming up but, the best was yet to come. The trek was mostly, uphill, so I decided to be a little slow. I was in no hurry and wanted to enjoy every view. One of the most stunning things about the trek was, you’re followed by the waterfall & Alaknanda river. I sat once in a while just to enjoy the view. It was a breathtaking moment. 

Also read: 6 Hidden Gems To Explore On Your Next Trip To Tirthan Valley

While I chose to walk, there are also options of a horse ride and helicopter. You may also hire porters to carry your luggage. However, if you’re walking, I would suggest you only carry, necessary items. Moving ahead, I had now hiked for 2.5hrs and finished my first half of the trek. But, when in mountains, one must have Maggi and a warm cup of tea, right? The second part was all uphill and the tough part. By then, the villagers and shopkeepers had already told me, this trek is tougher than the valley of flower one. But, when, I looked back, I just took a deep breath and said to myself “I don’t want to forget this view”. 

After I finished my cup of tea, I hiked for another 2 hours which was no doubt, the toughest patch and required a lot of effort. I reached, the base camp, Ghangharia, The moment you step into Ghangaria, you are delighted with a view. However, the destination was yet to come. I had to hike 30 minutes more to reach my Hotel Kuber. It was a pretty decent place and cost me ₹2500 per night. After taking a rest for some time, I headed out, to explore a bit of Ghangharia. The villagers guided me towards the waterfall, and that’s what I needed after a full day of hiking. It was so soothing to hear with birds singing and the sound of water gushing.

Day 3 Mini Heaven On Earth 

The next day, after having a cup of tea, I packed lunch for myself and left for the trek. I started my trek at 6:30 am hours as the gate of the valley of flowers opens at 7 am. You are charged ₹150 as an entry fee and a security fee of ₹500 which is refundable at the check post. I was the first one to start the trek. It is always a good idea to start your trek early in the morning. It is a 6km trek and is scaled at a height of 3,658 m. The view was indeed a hidden treasure! I have 100+ pictures of the trek and every single picture is hypnotic.

It is rightly said, “The best view comes after the hardest climb.” In case, you’re going without a guide, then you may collect the flower book at the check post, which will give you knowledge about all the flowers. I missed out on that. The flower bed didn’t look real. In the middle of the trek, there are two ways – one goes towards the Leggy grave and another one is Tipri. I opted to explore, Tipri which is the end of the trek. And, trust me, the beauty was rare. Just have a look at it. 

It took me four hours to reach Tipri and I was mesmerised by the view. I sat here, had my lunch, and wanted to just stay in the moment. I was having the best time of my life. One tip – if you start your trek early, you have more time to spend in the valley. After all this hiking, you deserve this view treat! One of the best moments of the trek is this!

I started heading back to Ghangharia, around 11:00 hours. While I was heading down, I decided to reach Govind Ghat the same day itself. Earlier I had planned, to stay a night at Ghangharia. I would suggest you decide this according to your convenience. You may also stay a day extra and try the Hemkund trek. Due to Covid, it’s not opened, so I couldn’t try this one out. Anyway, I reached the check post at 2 pm. Climbing down the mountain was quite easy and took less effort. Good Job, Right? 

I had my lunch and headed back to Govind Ghat from where I took my cab and decided to stay a night in Joshimath at the Tattva itself. It was a day full of dreamlike adventure, but all worth it! 

Also read: Uttarakhand Announces ₹200 Crore Relief Package For Those Involved In Tourism Sector

Day 4 Joshimath to Delhi

July 16 early in the morning, I headed back for Dehradun as I had to catch my flight for Delhi. My bag felt heavy, this time. I was also carrying, the beauty of nature and a one-of-a-kind experience with me. 

Take some Notes! 

  1. Only pack essentials. The trail is tough and it is always a good option to carry less. 
  2. Pre-book your stays to avoid the last-minute hassle.
  3. Ghangharia only offers JIO and BSNL networks. 
  4. Carry water resistance shoes. Raincoats are a must. 
  5. Currently, RT-PCR or vaccination is necessary to enter Uttrakhand.
  6. There are many checkpoints on the way.
  7. The entire route is filled with landslides so always take precautions while coming.
  8. Do have an extra day when you plan this trek, it is a lengthy one.

My Budget was ₹35000 but if you go in groups or couple would be cheaper

  • The return flight was around ₹5k
  • Taxi ₹15k for 4 days
  • 3 nights hotel stay for ₹11k
  • Food and snacks ₹3k
  • Miscellaneous expense ₹1k

Well, now that I have shared my experience, I would surely recommend you this trek to you. It’s a perfect 4-day moderate trek, good for beginners, but you will need to be physically fit for this trek. On that note, please feel free to ask anything about Valley of Flower! 

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