Discovered in 1931, the Valley of Flowers has enthralled trekkers and mountaineers alike for nearly a century. Its beauty is unparallel and leaves all who look upon it speechless. When the valley is in full bloom walking along its paths is akin to walking on an unending carpet of flowers.
It is home to some of the rarest species of flowers that can only be found in the state of Uttarakhand and some that are only found in this valley. It is also home to animals like the Asiatic Black Bear and the elusive Snow Leopard.
Hemkund Sahib located at a height of over 15000 feet is one of the holiest pilgrimage places for the Sikhs and also has a Gurudwara. It is believed that the 10th guru, Guru Gobind Singh Ji meditated here and the Gurudwara here is dedicated to him.
|Day||From||To||Altitude (mts)||Distance (km)/Time (hrs)|
|Day 1||Dehradun||Joshimath||1875m||275km/12 hrs (By car)|
|Day 2||Joshimath||Govind Ghat||1828m||21km/1hr|
|Day 3||Ghangaria||Valley of Flowers||3900m||3km/1.5hrs|
|Valley of Flowers||Ghangaria||3048m||3km/1.5hrs|
|Day 4||Ghangaria||Hemkund Sahib||4632m||6km/4hrs|
|Day 5||Ghangaria||Govind Ghat||1828m||13km/6hrs|
|Day 6||Joshimath||Dehradun||275km/12 hrs (By car)|
Trek Grade: Moderate
Best Months: End July to End August (The trek is open from Mid May to Early October, however, the flowers in the Valley of Flowers bloom only for a short period.)
Govind Ghat to Ghangaria
Govind Ghat is named after the Sikh Guru Shri Guru Govind Singh. Vehicles go up to Govind Ghat and from Govind Ghat one can take a local taxi to reach a small village 2km from Govind Ghat we start walking from here. It is 13km to Ghangaria from the road head.
The walk to Ghangaria is mostly shaded and the path is well laid. For the first half of the walk the gradient is not much and you walk along the beautiful river Parvati. The sound of the river is always with you throughout the walk.
There are many small tea houses on the way and they are a great place to rest and have cup of tea or refreshment. As you reach further up you will start noticing that you are nearing the Valley of Flowers as you will start seeing the flowers on the way itself. After crossing the river Parvati there is a steep ascent and we finally reach Ghangaria, which will be your base for the next three days. One is not allowed to camp inside the Valley of Flowers or at the Hemkund gurudwara thus one must travel up and down from Ghangaria.
Ghangaria to the Valley of Flowers
Ghangaria is the base for Hemkund Sahib and the Valley of Flowers which is a National Park. Walking from Ghangaria to the Valley of Flowers is mesmerizing. It is a steep walk because you are gaining height but it is shaded with trees. After walking for 2 hours you reach the valley which is 8 km long and 2.5km wide. Now the valley is yours to explore and you can walk further into the valley or sit in one place and admire the beauty without disturbing it. Lunch will be served here and after lunch we come back to Ghangaria.
Ghangaria to Hemkund Sahib
Hemkund Sahib is a challenging walk as compared to the Valley of Flowers walk because you are gaining height from 3048m to 4632m but the path is well laid and with ponies available all the time if you don’t want to walk. The walk to Hemkund is very scenic as soon as you reach certain height you will get to see slopes full of Brahma Kamal. The Brahma Kamal is a high altitude flower which is on the endangered species list and it holds a very significant place in Hindu mythology.
As soon as you start hearing the notes of the Ardaas you know that you are at the Hemkund gurudwara. After darshan at gurudwara one can have tea and hot kichari severed as langar,see the taal and the Laxman temple next to gurudwara. The reason why people are not allowed to stay at the gurudwara is because of the enormous height that is gained in a few hours and there are severe risks of people getting altitude sickness.
Back to Ghangaria with beautiful memories you finish your trek.