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VALLEY OF FLOWERS TRAVEL GUIDE

Wildlife | Nature & Scenic | Adventure / Trekking

Photo Credit: Flickr

Ideal Trip Duration: 3-4 Days

Base Station: Valley Of Flowers, Joshimath (34 Kms)

Nearest City to Valley Of Flowers: Dehradun (318 Kms)

Best Time to Visit Valley Of Flowers: May to October

Peak Season: July & September

State: Uttarakhand | District: Chamoli

Valley Of Flowers Weather: Summer: Maximum - 20°C and Minimum - 5°C
Winter: Maximum - 15°C and Minimum - Minus 5 °C

At a distance of 16 km from Govind Ghat, 34 km from Joshimath, 41 km from Badrinath, 277 km from Rishikesh, 300 km from Haridwar, 318 km from Dehradun, and 518 km from Delhi, Valley of Flowers National Park is one of the most popular tourist destinations in India located in Western Himalayas in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It is perched at an altitude of 3600 m and is known for its meadows of endemic alpine flowers and the variety of flora. Valley of Flowers is one of the best national parks in India and also among the best Tourist places in Uttarakhand for trekking enthuasists.

Stretching over a vast expanse of 87.50 sq. km, the park is about 5 km long and 2 km wide. The gentle landscape of the Valley of Flowers complements the rugged mountain of Nanda Devi National Park to the east. Together, they encompass a unique transition zone between the mountain ranges of the Zanskar and Great Himalayas. Valley of Flowers and Nanda Devi National Park, together, constitute the Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve.

The Valley of Flowers was declared a National Park in 1982 and was included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2004. Initially known as Bhyundar Valley, the Park was discovered and renamed in 1931 by British mountaineer Frank Smith. The highest point of the park is Gauri Parbat, at an elevation of 6719 m.

The Valley of Flowers is also believed to be the place from where Hanuman brought the magical herb to resuscitate Lakshman in the Hindu epic Ramayana. The legend still holds value as many people continue to believe that Sanjeevani, the magical herb, continues to grow in the park. There are other legends associated with the park. Locals believe it is the playground of fairies and that they descend to the valley in absence of humans. At present, no settlements and grazing is allowed in the national park.

The Park is known for its scenic beauty comprising alpine shrubs and different colorful flowers, milky white streams, snow-clad peaks and pristine air. More than 650 species of flowers including Brahma Kamal, Blue Poppy and Cobra Lily can be found in the Park. This richly diverse area is also home to rare and endangered animals, including the Asiatic black bear, snow leopard, musk deer, brown bear, red fox, and blue sheep. Birds found in the park include Himalayan monal pheasant and other high altitude birds.

Valley of Flowers can be reached only on foot from Govind Ghat, on the Rishikesh - Badrinath Highway. Ghangaria, a scenic hamlet situated 13 km from Govind Ghat is the base station and last human habitation center on the way to Valley of Flowers (and also Hemkund Sahib). The 13 km trek from Govind Ghat to Ghangaria runs along a well maintained path, which is the base for visiting Valley of Flowers and Hemkund. This path can be covered either by walk or by pony. In addition there are a few hotels and a camp ground with tents and mattresses. Recently, an Indian airline company has started a helicopter service between Govind Ghat and Ghangaria. Visitors take night halt at Ghangaria and continue the trek to Valley of Flowers on next day.

The last 3 km trek from Ghangaria to Valley of Flowers entails a steep climb. The visitors to Valley of Flowers need to get a permit from Forest Department at Ghangaria and the permit is valid for three days and visiting and trekking is allowed only during day time. As visitors are not allowed to stay inside the National park, accommodation can be obtained at Ghangaria to explore the park on multiple days. The Valley of Flowers is open throughout the day from 6 AM to 6 PM. The last entry into the park is at 3 PM.

The Valley is accessible from last week of May after the snow melts. It is closed between November to April because of snow bound paths and glaciers. Best time to visit is between late July and early September, when the valley is fully covered with beautiful flowers.

Jolly Grant Airport at Dehradun is the nearest airport to Valley of Flowers at a distance of 300 km, while Rishikesh is the nearest Railway Station at a distance of 277 km. Govind Ghat (16 km) is the nearest bus station 16 km away from the Valley. All the buses plying towards Badrinath stop here. Joshimath (18 km from Govind Ghat) has better bus connectivity with major towns in Uttarakhand from where several private vehicles are available to Govind Ghat.

Entry Fee: Rs.150 per Indian (valid for 3 days) + Rs. 50 for each additional day, Rs.600 per Foreigner (for 3 days) + Rs. 250 for each additional day, and Rs.500 for Video Cam.

Park Timings: 6 AM to 6 PM

OTHER INFO
Internet Availability: Internet Not Available
STD Code: No Phones
Languages Spoken: Hindi, Garhwali and English
Major Festivals: Details Not Available
Notes/Tips:
None

HOW TO REACH VALLEY OF FLOWERS


By Air

Nearest Airport: Dehradun - Jolly Grant Airport (285 Kms)

By Train

Nearest Train Station: Rishikesh Railway Station (277 Kms)

By Bus

Nearest Bus Station: Govind Ghat Bus Station (16 Kms)
Joshimath (34 Kms)

6 PLACES TO VISIT & THINGS TO DO IN VALLEY OF FLOWERS


Adventure / Trekking | Pilgrimage

At a distance of 18 km from Govind Ghat, 42 km from Badrinath and 36 km from Joshimath, Hemkund Sahib is a well-known Sikh shrine located in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It is also known as Gurudwara Hemkunt Sahib and is one among the 508 important pilgrimages for Sikhs. Situated near Valley of Flowers, it is also a popular place for trekking in Uttarakhand apart from being one of the most scenic places in Himalayas.

Gurudwara Hemkund Sahib is dedicated to Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Sikh Guru. This gurudwara is situated at an altitude of 4329 m and is surrounded by seven snow-capped mountain peaks. This gurudwara is the world's highest gurudwara and is visited by both Sikhs as well as Hindus. It is believed that at this particular spot Guru Gobind Singh meditated for a long time. According to Hindu mythology, Rishi Medhasa of the Markandeya Purana and Lord Ram's younger brother, Lakshman, performed penance at this site.

The construction of this gurudwara started in the .....

Distance (From Valley Of Flowers): 8 Kms
Trip Duration (From Valley Of Flowers - Including Travel): Full Day
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Pilgrimage

At a distance of 22 km from Badrinath and 21 km from Joshimath, Pandukeshwar is a sacred village in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It lies at an altitude of 6300 feet and is situated on the way to Badrinath. It is a famous pilgrimage center situated between Joshimath and Badrinath.

According to legend, Pandukeshwar was established by King Pandu, father of great Pandavas of Mahabharata epic. He was living with his wives Kunti and Madri in Pandukeshwar after giving his throne to his elder brother Dhritharashtra. One day Pandu went on hunting in the jungle and unintentionally killed a sage making love in deer form. While the sage was dying he cursed Pandu that he will not be able make love with anyone and if he does, he will die instantly. To get cleanse of sin of killing of the sage, Pandu installed the bronze image of Vishnu in the Yogadhyan Badri shrine and mediated. Meanwhile Kunti and Madri gave birth to Pandavas through .....

Distance (From Valley Of Flowers): 19 Kms
Trip Duration (From Valley Of Flowers - Excluding Travel): 1 Hour
.....


Pilgrimage

At a distance of 32 km from Badrinath and 11 km from Joshimath, Vishnuprayag is one of the Panch Prayags of Alaknanda River, and lies at the confluence of Alaknanda River and Dhauliganga River, in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It is a famous pilgrimage center in Uttarakhand state.

The Alaknanda River, which originates in the eastern slopes of glacier fields of Chaukhamba, is joined by the Saraswathi River near Mana, and then flows in front of the Badrinath temple. It then meets the Dhauli Ganga River, which originates from the Niti Pass, to form the Vishnuprayag. This stretch of the Alaknanda River is called the Vishnu Ganga. Vishnuprayag is the first of Panch Prayag, other four being Nandaprayag, Karnaprayag, Rudraprayag and Devprayag according to descending order of river Alakananda that meets other four tributaries of holy Ganga at four different places.

Situated at an altitude of 1,372 m, Vishnuprayag derives its name .....

Distance (From Valley Of Flowers): 23 Kms
Trip Duration (From Valley Of Flowers - Excluding Travel): 1 Hour
.....


Pilgrimage

At a distance of 42 km from Badrinath, Joshimath, also known as Jyotirmath is a town and a municipal board in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It is situated at an altitude of 6150 feet in the snow-capped Himalayan ranges just above the mountains of Dhauliganga and Alaknanda. It is also the gateway to many Himalayan expeditions, trekking trails, camping and pilgrimage centers.

Joshimath is one of the four maths or monasteries established in the 8th century by Adi Guru Sri Shankaracharya. The math here is dedicated to Atharva Veda. Joshimath lies in the region of Vishnuprayag, where two rivers of Dhauliganga and Alaknanda meet.

Joshimath is an important pilgrimage center with several temples and religious sites. Narasimha temple and Bhavishya Badri Temples are the prominent temples located in Joshimath. Narasimha Temple is an ancient temple of Lord Vishnu and main temple of Joshimath. It has idol of Lord Narasimha, which is believed to be established by Shankaracharya. As .....

Distance (From Valley Of Flowers): 34 Kms
Trip Duration (From Valley Of Flowers - Excluding Travel): 1-2 Hours
.....


Pilgrimage

At a distance of 293 km from Rishikesh, 335 km from Dehradun and 523 km from Delhi, Badrinath is an ancient holy town in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It lies at an altitude of 3133 m in the Garhwal Himalayan ranges along the banks of River Alaknanda near India - Tibet border. It is one of the most famous centers of pilgrimage in India and also one of the most popular Uttarakhand places to visit as part of Char Dham.

Badrinath is the most important of the four sites of famous Char Dham pilgrimage; the other three being Puri, Dwarka and Rameshwaram. It is also visited as part of Chota Char Dham Pilgrimage along with Kedarnath, Yamunotri and Gangotri in Himalayan region of Uttarakhand. Surrounded by Nar and Narayana mountain ranges and .....

Distance (From Valley Of Flowers): 41 Kms
Trip Duration (From Valley Of Flowers - Excluding Travel): Half Day to Full Day
.....


Hill Station | Adventure / Trekking

At a distance of 16 km from Joshimath, 56 km from Badrinath, 262 km from Rishikesh, 304 km from Dehradun and 495 km from Delhi, Auli is a cute hill station and an important ski destination in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. It is one of the best ski resorts in India and one of the top Uttarakhand tourism destinations for adventure sports.

Auli, also known as Auli Bugyal which means meadow in Garhwali, is located at an average altitude of 2800 m in the Garhwal Himalayas. Earlier, Auli was a prominent trade centre and the trails of Auli were frequently traversed by the semi-nomadic Bhotiya tribes who maintained barter trading with Tibet for centuries. According to legend, the revered Guru Adi Shankaracharya visited Auli during 8th century AD. He built a math at Joshimath, which still is intact and is known by the name Shankaracharya Tapastali.

Auli is also a beautiful ski destination, but .....

Distance (From Valley Of Flowers): 50 Kms
Trip Duration (From Valley Of Flowers - Excluding Travel): Full Day
.....

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