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valley of flowers uttarakhand is a legendary trek. The world knows of it! Many tales have been spun around this valley – usually about trekkers falling unconscious from the heavy scent of flowers on the valley floor. The beginnings of these tales were made by British mountaineer Frank Smythe, who stumbled upon this valley after a hard climb of Mt Kamet. “The most beautiful valley I had ever seen among the most noblest and purest mountains on earth” is how he put it in his book. That might sound like an extravagant description, but you would find it difficult to disagree.
The moment you enter the valley, you have a sweeping view of it’s vast expanse covered in a layer of flowers. Flowers, leaves, buds of various shapes, sizes, colours all grow together here.
Valley Of Flowers Trek, Uttarakhand
In the entirety of the season of valley of flowers uttarakhand, the flowers you see are never the same.
The blooming of these alpine flowers come in waves. The first set of wildflowers come in the beginning of monsoon in July, and then in August, and then changes in relatively drier September..You are sure to see Meadow Geranium, Snake Foil, Hooked Stick Seed, Himalayan Rose, Blue Poppy, River Anemone, White Leaf Hog Foot and Dog Flower. No wonder this valley is a botanist dreamland.
The setting of the valley
While much has been said about the flowers, we must talk about the setting of the valley itself. On one side of the flower-decked valley tall cliffs climb to the sky. The other side is guarded by snow-clad mountains. The serene Pushpavati river glides through the middle of the valley. Clouds hang in between this amphitheatre of mountains. At the end of this 8km stretch of valley, you see a glacier that feeds the river. If there is a setting that is perfect, then this must be it.
The Hemkund Sahib lake
Many go to Hemkund Sahib for religious reasons. While the place is sacred to Sikhs,it is not the only reason the place is worth going to. Resting at a daunting altitude of 14, 107 ft, just behind the Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara, is the crystal clear alpine lake. Snow patches from surrounding mountains feed the lake. Himalayan flowers of Brahmakamal grow around it. These flowers only grow at heights of 10,000 ft to 15,000 ft. So it is a joy to see them grow in abundance. It completes the aura of serenity this place exudes.valley of flowers hemkunt sahib
Trekking in Monsoon
valley of flowers trekking in Uttarakhand that can be done in monsoon. In fact, it is supposed to be done in monsoon. The blooming of the flowers is dependent on the rains, after all! Monsoon brings out the best in the hills. The valley is at it’s lushest green while flowers of intoxicating scents sprout from the wet earth . So don’t let the idea of trekking in rains deter you! It will rain for probably two days of your trek. Sometimes you will just experience light drizzles. Take a poncho and enjoy one of the best treks in the Himalayas during monsoon!
Valley Of Flowers Opening & Closing Date
Opening Date : 01 June 2020
Closing Date : 04 Oct 2020
How to Reach in Valley of Flowers
valley of flowers uttarakhand – Govind Ghat 285 km from Haridwar, Govind Ghat 255 km from Rishikesh, Govind Ghat 505 km from Delhi.
By Air : The nearest Airport to Valley Of Flowers is Jolly Grant Airport but the roads are only connected up to Govindghat from Valley of Flower. Valley Of Flowers is Located 292kms from Jolly Grant Airport and is well connected to Delhi with daily flights. Govindghat is well connected by motorable roads with Jolly Grant Airport.
By Train : The nearest Railway Station to Valley Of Flowers is Rishikesh. Reshikesh Railway station is Located 273kms before Govindghat on NH58. Rishikesh is well connected by railway network with major destination of India.
By Road : Valley Of Flowers is attach upto Govindghatt motorable Roads and from here you have to start trek of 16kms to reach Valley Of Flowers. Buses and Taxi to Govindghat are easily available from Haridwar, Rishikesh, Srinagar and other major destinations of India.
Best Time To Visit Valley of Flowers
(July – November) : Valley of flower tourism is starts from july and close at end of November.For trekkers they can enjoy trekking in valley of flower from july to november.
Monsoon (July – August) : The best time to visit Valley of Flowers Is monsoon.In this time the flowers are fully bloomed and the snow has completely melted away. You can enjoy the Valley of Flowers weith the beautiful and colourful scenery of the place.So, for nature lovers July – August.
Valley Of Flower Map/Route
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Day 1: Getting to base camp, Govindghat
The trek to Valley of Flowers (VoF) and Hemkund starts a little beyond Joshimath, at a pilgrim hamlet called Govind Ghat. Leave Delhi early in the morning and travel along River Alakananda on the Badrinath highway. The roads are dangerously cut on mountains edges and at times, you only see the river flowing in the gorge deep below. Do not carry food with you as there are plenty of eateries on the way. As a trekker, there is no need to hire porters or mules on this trail but if you need one to carry your backpack, Govindghat is the place to hire a porter or mule. BSNL network is available in Govindghat, so make all your calls here before you set off on the trek.
- Altitude: 6,300 ft (1,920 m)
- Time taken: 16 – 17hours drive to Govindghat.
Day 2: Govindghat to Ghangria via Poolna
- Altitude: 6,300 ft (1,920 m) to 9,600 ft (2,926 m) via 7,200 ft (2,195 m)
- Time taken: 4 km drive to Poolna. 5-6 hours trek, 9 km
- Trek gradient: Easy-moderate. Gradual ascent throughout on a well- defined trail
- Water sources: Carry sufficient water. You can refill your water bottles at any of the several dhabas that you will find on the trail.
There is now a motorable road to Poolna. This reduces the distance to trekked today to 9 km from the earlier 13 km. Start with a 4 km cab ride to Poolna. It is usually full of Sikh pilgrims walking up and down. It’s a heartening and motivating sight. All thanks to volunteers who sweep the trail every day.
The 9 km trek from Poolna to Ghangria goes all the way along the river. Stop by any roadside dhaba for a drink or a bite to eat. The trail is alternately sunny and shaded. At around the midpoint of the day’s trek, you cross the river and go to the other bank. After this, you no longer trek alongside the river.
The valley of flowers trek takes 5-6 hours and you approach a tabular land. This is when you know you are close to Ghangria. Ghangria has a helipad and some space for camping. Half a kilometre from the helipad is the one-street village of Ghangria, lined with hotels, restaurants and a Gurudwara. The Gurudwara offers free accommodation and food to all.
Day 3: Ghangria to Valley of Flowers and Back
- Altitude: 9,600 ft (2,195 m) to 11,500 ft (3,505 m) and back
- Time taken: 6-7 hours, 3.7 km each way
- Trek gradient: Easy. Flat walk in the valley
- Water sources: Carry 2 litres of water. You can refill your water bottles from streams that you will find in the Valley, after a couple of hours of trekking.
Leave Ghangria early (6.00 am) to give yourself the whole day to spend at Valley of Flowers. The trail splits in less than a kilometre. There is a gate to buy entry tickets to the valley. Walk inside and notice the small flowering plants springing up on either side. A kilometre into the gate, there is a scenic bridge across a stream gushing below.
Tall rocky mountains rise before you. Notice that the well-laid-out trail has now become a small footway along the side of the valley. The stream flows below you and there are small, hard snow patches by the side. On the trek inside Valley of Flowers, you see very few people around you. This may come across as a big and welcome contrast to the previous day’s trek, where there were hundreds.
Trek To Valley Of Flowers: A Must Have Experience For 2020!
The scenery has also taken a drastic turn for the better and any direction you turn to looks picture-perfect. Trek along for a couple of kilometres on the flat path and to your right opens up the valley. Cross another rickety bridge and collect water to drink from below.
Prominent flowers that you will see in July-August include Meadow Geranium, Snake Foil, Hooked Stick Seed, Himalayan Rose, Blue Poppy, River Anemone, White Leaf Hog Foot and Dog Flower. Carry packed lunch from Ghangria on the Valley of Flowers trek day. There is no food available in the valley. Plan your return along the same path by early afternoon. The afternoon sun falling on the valley from a different direction gives a whole new perspective to the same place you saw in the morning.
Day 4: Ghangria to Hemkund Sahib and Back
- Altitude: 9,600 ft (2,926 m) to 14,107 ft (4,300 m) and back
- Time taken: 9-10 hours, 6 km each way
- Trek gradient: Moderate – difficult. Steep ascent for about 4 hours to reach Hemkund Sahib and steep descent all the way back.
- Water sources: Carry sufficient water. You can refill your water bottles at the hotels that line the trail.
Start your day early. The weather can be impulsive in the afternoon and sudden cloud cover and rain can get you stranded if you do not get down on time. The thought of getting up before 5.00 am can be daunting but the Gurudwara makes it easy. Their day starts at 4.00 am with the singing of bhajans.
By 5.00 am, you hear people outside the gate of the Gurudwara chanting in the chorus and the horses being readied to go up to Hemkund Sahib. Get up and grab a hot drink of chai. A poncho (light rain coat) and a trekking pole can be handy on the trek to Hemkund. Pass the deviation to Valley of Flowers.
Continue to trek up the steep path slowly but steadily. Spot a pretty waterfall on your right falling through the rock walls on the right. After about 2 hours of walking, you are higher than the tree line and the views begin to get better.
Mark the route to Valley of Flowers on the mountain in front across the river gorge. After another hour of slow walking with numerous breaks, you begin to feel reduced oxygen levels in the air. A melting glacier lies on the way. Take generous breaks while climbing up the steep path. These breaks are important as going up very fast could only mean inviting altitude sickness.
Sitting down causes your muscles to relax and getting back on track can be very difficult. An hour of stiff climbing brings you to Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara. The lake lies just behind it. The Hemkund Sahib lake remains frozen for six months. Warm yourself in the Gurudwara and have generous helpings of hot tea and khichdi.
Day 5: Ghangria to Govindghat via Poolna
- Altitude: 9,600 ft (2926 m) to 6,300 ft (1,920 m) via 7,200 ft (2,195 m)
- Time taken: 4 hours, 9 km + 4 km drive
- Trek gradient: Easy descent to Poolna on the same trail that you trekked on earlier.
- Water sources: Carry sufficient water. You can refill your water bottles at the several dhabas that line the trail.
The trail back to Poolna is on the same path that you took on Day 1. Drive from Poolna to Govind Ghat. Start after breakfast and reach Govind Ghat by 2.00 pm.
Day 6: Govindghat To Delhi
Drive down to Delhi Or Rishikesh. Expect to reach Rishikesh between 6 pm To 7 pm And Delhi By 10 pm To 11 pm.