A botanists’ dream, an adventurer’s high, a naturalists’ trance and a photographer’s delight – there are probably very few words that can describe the immense beauty of Valley of Flowers. Situated in Chamoli district in Uttarakhand, the valley which is usually covered in snow, springs to life with a blankets of hundreds of alpine flowers during the monsoon months.
Covering an area of about 88 sq.km, the Valley of Flowers is situated at a height of 3600 near Hemkund Sahib (which is a famous pilgrimage destination for Sikhs). From July to September, a fresh batch of floral plants is germinated and covers the entire valley in red, blue, yellow and purple. A surreal out-of-the-world feeling is what can best describe the natural beauty and the heavenly scent of this valley, which is a part of the Nanda Devi Sanctuary.
Want to visit Valley of Flowers? Then get ready to trek! Anyone who is moderately fit and is ready to experience adventure can undertake this journey. GIO Adventures have a comfortable six-day trip on a budget and their in-house experts will travel with the group to guide you every step of the way.
The route which GIO Adventures follows is the Haridwar-Rishikesh-Auli-Govindghat-Ghangaria-Valley of flowers- Hemkund Sahib-Ghangaria-Govindghat-Badrinath-Auli-Rishikesh-Haridwar route. So not only do you get to visit the floral valley, you also get to stay overnight in the beautiful Himalayan Eco Lodge in Auli, visit two places of religious importance — all in one trip! Now that is what I call value for money.
You can spend an entire day in the Valley of flowers to experience this magical atmosphere. There are almost 300-500 species of wild flowers here that bloom after the snow melts. Flowers like Brahmakamal, Blue Poppy, Cobra Lily Anemone, Geranium, Marsh Marigold and Prinula can be found here in their wild and natural environment (unlike in parks where every flower has its designated place..how boring!). Small rivers and waterfalls in the valley make it a perfect place to enjoy with friends and family.
Facts about Valley of Flowers trek that you probably didn’t know:
1. The Valley of flowers was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site – a status given to those places or monuments in the world that are simply irreplaceable and have no parallels anywhere else.
2. The Valley of Flowers is open to visitors from June to the end of October. But July, August and September are the months in which flowers are in full bloom and cover the entire stretch of the valley.
3. Local villagers have for years believed that angels and fairies live in the Valley of Flowers. And so they had the good sense of preserving its beauty before it became a National Park.
4. Travellers are not allowed to stay in the Valley of Flowers overnight. And for good reason too, as allowing that would only mean less space for flowers to occupy.
5. The nearest place to look for accommodation is the base camp situated at Ghangaria, where private lodges and hotels are abundant. This is also the base camp for Sikh pilgrims going to Hemkund Sahib.
6. If your luggage slowing you down, or if its becoming difficult for you to carry it with you, then you can hire porters at Govindghat.
We know that you are a tech-savvy generation and would try to get as much information about the Valley of Flowers from the internet before you decide to trek up there. But travelling with GIO Adventures means you will be accompanied by a taking encyclopaedia – at least that’s what we like to all our outdoor experts.
Safety and logistical headaches can be dumped on them while you enjoy this mesmerising trip which on any given day will beat the Alpine slopes of Europe hands down.