Have you ever felt the rush of adrenaline to go for a long, fun-filled adventure? If yes, then “The Mountains are calling” and it’s time for you to take a hike (pun intended). You wouldn’t disagree with the fact that there’s something surreal about mountain ranges and hiking trails. It may be their grandiose or maybe the sense of achievement on completing a long, rigorous trek, that gets you to adventure more. The reasons are endless. Get your gear ready, embrace the challenge, enjoy the fresh air and behold spectacular views on some of the best trekking places in India!
1. Chadar Trek: If you’re a thrill junkie and love to take up new challenges, then Chadar Trek is trek is for you. Those who’ve experienced this trail will not disagree with the fact that while the trek is magical, it is also tricky and full of thrills. The cold temperatures and fear of the fragile Zanskar river are nothing in comaparision to the views you’ll behold throughout the trek. From the first stop at Leh to Tsomo Paldar, followed by Tibb Caves to the enchanting Nerak frozen Waterfall, this trek is one no one should miss out. It is advised to spend a few days at the base camp before moving ahead so that your body gets used to the climate and altitude. The best time to visit is from January to end of February. This trek is for the adrenaline junkies who like to dare in extreme cold weather conditions. Chadar Trek offers the adventure seekers a chance to walk on the frozen Zanskar River. The trekkers also get to know about the locals and their way of living in one of the most uninhabitable places on earth. Meeting these locals and learning their challenging lifestyle of surviving in the sub zero weather is itself strong enough reason to charge you up for the entire journey. The temperature is twenty degrees under the freezing point and it goes even further than that during the night.
2. Kashmir Great Lakes Trek: If you want to have an experience of trekking in paradise then Kashmir great lakes trek can never be missed out. Verdant valleys, snow-capped mountains, and the great Alpine Lakes. What else does someone want? Kashmir houses one of the best treks any wanderlust can desire. The trek encompasses Sonamarg, Nichnai, the Vishnusar Lake and the Kishansar Lake, followed by Gadsar, Satsar, the Gangabal Twin Lakes and Naranag. The best time to visit is between June and September during spring season when the view is breath-taking. It’s also the best time for landscape photographers to get some fantastic shots.
3. Stok Kangri: Stok Kangri is one of the highest trekkable summits in the world and is situated near Leh, in the Ladakh region of India. Ladahk is located in the northern part of India and is popular for the support and compassion of its native residents. Leh is the capital of Ladakh, located at the height of around 3450 meters above the sea level. It is the most adventurous place for trekkers who flock here every year in thousands from India and abroad. Stok Kangri is a peak which has gained tremendous popularity in the past few years.
The Stok Kangri trek starts from Stok Village which is full of flourishing green trees and natural grandeur. From a place called Changa Ma, you will reach the Base Camp. This camp is set up in a grassy area which pleases everyone with various water bodies around it. Staying at this base camp and meeting other experienced trekkers is a huge learning opportunity for new trekkers. As trekkers usually rest for a full day they get to know about the challenges and possibilities about the summit from their guide and other fellow trekkers. After an ascend climbing for about 9 to 10 hours from base camp, you reach the stok kangri peak. Once at the summit, you get a birds eye view of the entire Karakoram Range from the north side and Zanskar range upto south.
4. Markha Valley: Ladakh – which is also know as – The land of Passes has the The Markha Valley trek which isone of the most diverse treks located in the barren landscape of Zanskar Himalayas. The Markha Valley trek goes inside the Hemis National park and offers an opportunity to meet the nomadic people while they herd their yaks. The ubiquitous “Chortens” – monasteries, Tibetan multicolored prayer flags, and stupas signify the immersion of Buddhism in this region. One can connect with Buddhist traditions and immerse oneself into its culture during the Markha valley trek.
Markha Valley trek is also called as a ‘tea house trek’ where trekkers can expect accommodation in parachute tents at most of the Villages on the route. You get to see an outstanding view of Zanskar and Ladakh ranges, the 20086 feet Stok Kangri and the 21000 feet Kang Yatsay peaks. The trek goes inside the breathtaking Hemis National Park and includes two pass crossings – Kangmaru La (17060 feet) and Ganda La (15748 feet). It is not very hard to understand why this is the most sought-after trek in the whole region considering the fame it has among the trekkers in India.
5. Har Ki Dun Valley: Har Ki Dun Valley is one of the most picturesque valleys in the Western Himalayas. It is nestled in the middle of a vale that’s cradle shaped at the bottom of the Har Ki Dun Valley peak. It is a delight for the trekkers in both winter and summer. The valley is accessible through the Govind National Park – popular for its wide variety of flora and fauna. The trail passes through ancient villages, pine forests, glacier basins, moraine ridges and alpine meadows. This trek gives you an amazing valley view and a chance to experience the slowly passed lifestyle of native people in the villages of Osla and Seema. It’s the only trek where you can trek along Thamsa River right up to the Har Ki Dun Valley.
Har Ki Dun Valley trail takes you back in time as the cradle shaped valley is full with ancient villages that are over 3000 years old. This also the kind of a trek where most of the people can come across the native lifestyle in close proximity. Most of the locals here grow rice, potato, rajma for a living and they also weave their own coats, jackets and also woolens. Duryodhana is the main deity worshiped here in this region. It is believed that the valley was home to Bho Dat named warrior, who was a supporter of Kaurava from Mahabharata.
A gradually manifesting snow peak panorama, a string of quaint villages and pine-topped forest cover, this trek includes stuff that you dream of.