The Valley of Flowers National Park lies in the northern part of the Indian state of Uttarakhand. This national park shares borders with Nepal and Tibet. During the monsoon season, this magnificent valley comes alive with more than 300 varieties of Alpine flowers and the entire valley blooms with a carpet of flowers in multiple colors. The snow-capped peaks provide a perfect backdrop for this natural wonder. The park is situated at a height of 3,600 meters (11,811.0 ft) above sea-level, and spreads around 87.5 square kilometers. It was declared a national park in 1982, and is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Provided you are fit and don’t mind an arduous trek, this is a site worth seeing.
Steps Download Article
Start at New Delhi. Choose your method of transportation that will take you in the right direction to reach the park:
- Flying: Take a flight up to Dehradun.
- Other transportation: Alternatively, you can either take a train, hire a car or take a bus directly to Rishikesh on Dehradun.
Get overnight accommodation. You will need to spend a night either at Dehradun or Rishikesh. You can resume the journey to the part the following day, understanding that it’s a full day’s journey.
Travel by road from Rishikesh or Dehradun to Joshimath. The ride can take anywhere between 11 to 13 hours. Joshimath is at an elevation of 1,890 meters (6,200.8 ft) above sea level, and has many reasonably priced hotels. Spend the night here, as the park is still some way yet.
Hire a taxi to reach Govindghat the next day. Govindghat is another 21 kilometers (13 mi) away from Joshimath. The arduous 17 kilometers (11 mi) trek to the Valley of Flowers park starts from this point.
Continue to Ghangaria. After a steep and rather difficult climb of around 14 kilometers (8.7 mi), you reach Ghangaria. This small village has several small hotels for a night’s stay. Ghangaria serves as a base camp for Gurudwara Hemkund Saheb and the Valley of Flowers. However, the route for both these are different and need to be covered on different days.
- Note: You cannot stay overnight in the park. The only accommodation available is at the Ghangaria base camp. Plan accordingly, including the six hour return trek to visit the park.
Trek for another 3 hours to reach the Valley of Flowers. Gurudwara Hemkund Saheb is a 5 kilometers (3.1 mi) trek from Gangharia.
Part 1 Part 1 of 1:Access and flowering times X Research source Download Article
Learn the access and flowering times, to help you determine when best to travel:
- May: Accessibility to the park starts from the last week of May, fewer flowers but little rain.
- June: More flowers but not in great abundance. Many pilgrims will be taking the available accommodation spaces. The rain will not yet be an issue.
- July and August: Many flowers will be blooming through June until mid-July. From mid-July to mid-August, you will see the majority of the flowers, about 650 species in all.
- September: This is the last chance to visit the park, during Autumn season. Many of the flowers have finished and have gone to seed. The last week of September is the last occasion for taking this trip.
- Other months: Snow makes the park inaccessible.
- Landslides are a common problem when it starts to rain during the monsoon season and can make travel dangerous. Thanks! Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- Check flood advisories at all times when traveling in these areas. Access to the park was closed for two years from 2013, following flooding that destroyed major bridges that provide access to this area. It is expected that the park access will resume from 1 June 2015. Thanks! Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0
- Be bear aware. Thanks! Helpful 0 Not Helpful 0