Himalayas are most sought after and at the same time most elusive trekking destination in the world. If you have not trek in Himalayas, you have not seen the most beautiful creation of God. Rejoice in the beauty of whiffing valleys, snow clad peaks and picturesque grasslands. Although, the Himalayas are popularly known for its trekking activity, there still exists a handful amount of hiking trails, which sits in sanctity and are yet to be discovered and exploited. Sitting gracefully in the lap of the mighty Himalayas, these lesser known Himalayan treks is the home to several high mountain passes, peaks and gushing rivers.
Apart from the famous hiking locations that leads to the world’s highest mountain peaks, there are various treks that unfolds the beauty of nature but have not yet been popularised.
The most enchanting lake treks and low terrain treks will be a feast to your eyes as well as your soul. Discover the lesser known Himalayan treks through this article curated for the mountaineer in you. Get dazzled by the beauty of these untouched sites and go on an expedition to butcher the serenity of these hiking destinations.
Here are some of the best lesser known Himalayan treks:
1) Indrahar Pass Trek
Indrahar Pass is full of deodar plantations, sparkling water bodies, green pastures and rhododendron forests. It is one of the ever fascinating, lesser known Himalayan Treks. This enthralling journey will take you on a trip of your life, where you will witness the scenic and opulent beauty of the Himalayan ranges.
On your way, trek through the camping ground of Triund, while marvelling at the beauty of Lahesh Caves, famous as Shepherd’s abode in winters. Indrahar Pass trek offers you a glimpse of Dhauladhar range and Pir Panjal mountain range. Enthral by the charming views of the massif and nature’s beauty on your way to the top of Indrahar Pass.
This trekking trail initiates from Galu Devi Temple, which is situated near Dharamshala. Indrahar Pass trek is one of the offbeat Himalayan treks, which allows you to walk on famous gaddis of Lahaul. A perfect combination of colours of Himachal along with revering nature, this is not the most visited trek, but still, crosses the mind of several travellers from all age group.
Perched at an elevation of 4342 metres, above the sea, Indrahar Pass offers an exciting experience to its visitors. It is situated at the confluence, in the skyline of the high massifs.
Indrahar Pass trekking trail is moderate to difficult level, having a total distance of about 35 km which is to be covered.
It is best to visit this pass between April and June or from August to October, as trekkers can experience a pleasant stay in these months. In the early months, the trails are covered with snow which makes it taxing to hike.
Moreover, in the monsoon season, the valley of Kangra and Chamba experiences heavy rainfall.
Indrahar Pass lies in the Dhauladhar mountain range of the Himalayas with noticeable hamlets down below. Also, it is known to form a border between the Chamba and Kangra valleys. Dharamshala is located at a close distance, from where a substantial amount of visitors flock in.
2) Pangarchulla Peak Trek
Pangarchulla Peak trek is one of the lesser known peaks of Himalayas. While trekking on Pangarchulla Peak, it is not enough to just reach to the top of the hills to witness meadows and grasslands. It is a trek situated near to Kuari Pass trek, thus another important hiking location.
Glance at the most stunning views of Nanda Devi on this one of the Offbeat Himalayan Treks. This trail will take you through blood-red rhododendrons, pristine green and snow white valleys, Plenty of Oaks, silver birch, blue pine, and bhojpatra on your way up the hills.
Further, climb to Kuari pass or other peaks standing nearby. Get soaked by the rich variety of plants and get a rare chance to witness leopards and Himalayan bears. As you ascend to the top of the hill, the ridge becomes steeper. The enthralling views of the majestic mountains will make you stumble and stop on your track. There is a huge range of alpine forests at the foothill region.
The maximum elevation that you will encounter on Pangarchulla Peak trek is 15,069 ft above the sea.
It is a moderate to difficult graded trek. The difficulty depends highly on the months you choose to visit this setting. Snow on the tracks makes it an even more incompatible site to hike on. It is a painstaking yet enduring site to walk on a summit day.
This trekking trail can be visited throughout the year except for monsoons. However, winters are considered the best time to plan a trek, and snow can be expected until April, which makes the way even more appealing for the travellers. Most crowd flocks in April to May.
Auli serves as the base camp to the great Pangarchulla Peak trek. You can also plan a trek from Chamoli in the Garhwal region of the Himalayan range and can reach Joshimath from Dehradun.
3) Annapurna Base camp trek
Annapurna Base camp trek offers an amazing walk through diverse landscapes and cultural valleys along with rich mountain avenue, terraced grasslands, quaint Gundruk village and an amazingly rich variety of flora and fauna.
Mt. Annapurna of Nepal is the 10th highest mountain in the world with a height of 8091 m, and the hiking trail to its base camp, which is at 4130 m or 13549 ft height, is one of the most challenging Himalayan treks. Kindle in the views of Fishtail mountain, which is revered by the Nepalese for its unique beauty. Known for the only trek experience where you will be in close encounters with 7000-8000 m peaks.
Get delighted by the scenic view of Annapurna Massif, peaks of Dhaulagiri, Machhapuchhre, Manaslu, Gangapurna, Tilicho Peak, Pisang Peak, and Paungda Danda.
The maximum altitude to experience on your Annapurna Base Camp is 13550 ft, which is a strenuous path to climb on. Every year hundreds of mountaineers climb on this trek to witness the eight thousanders from such an elevation.
Plan a trekking activity to Annapurna Base Camp. Trekking in Annapurna is considered Moderate to high level of difficulty. It’s a popular choice among outdoor enthusiasts and could be travelled alone.
The most popular season in Nepal for trekking to the Annapurna Base Camp is from October and November. This is often treated by clear views of the mountain peaks and a glorious night sky.
However, April to May is also considered a good time to plan your trip to ABC, as snow starts to melt and haze is visible on just lower altitudes. May is a hotter month with fewer tourist activities.
The famous Annapurna base camp is situated in Nepal. Pokhara serves the gateway to Annapurna region which could be reached from Kathmandu. You will move alongside rice paddies and amidst forests of Annapurna conservation area, to reach the Annapurna Massif to be revered by the exquisite beauty of the Nepal. However, you can commence your trek from Nayapul.
4) Kedarkantha Trek
One of the most beautiful Himalayan treks boasts of pristine beauty and ravishing camp sites. The Kedarkantha trek can be your best bet for trekking in winters in India. Walk on the carpet of brown leaves and meander in the lush green pine forests on your hiking journey.
This peak is covered with sceneries and shades of nature that are waiting to be unfolded. Catch a glimpse of snow peaks as soon as you step on the trek site and take a jaw dropping 360-degree view of the pristine summits. The exciting part of the trek is you get to witness the mighty Himalayas from the peaks
The Kedarkantha trek is almost 20 km of trekking, with a maximum altitude of 12500 ft above the sea.
The Kedarkantha peak is not that high in altitude and also is a moderate to easy graded trek, which enables the beginners and novice trekkers to gear up for an enjoyable adventure.
The best season to travel for Kedarkantha trek would be in winter months from December to April, when the entire place is covered with virgin snow, making this is one of the picturesque trekking location in the whole of India.
Kedarkantha trek is a perfect hiking destination in the lap of Garhwal region, Uttarakhand. The climb starts from the village of Sankri and offers a view of 13 peaks of Himalayas.
5) Prashar Lake Trek
Prashar lake is one of the most beautiful and lesser known Himalayan treks, surrounded by the Dhauladhar range. Get enchanted by the various shades of this lake which will mesmerise you with all its beauty. Marvel at the pristine snow covered lake in winters, and a beautifully sprawling lake in summers on your trek to Prashar.
It is believed to get its name from the sage Prashar, who mediated here. Spend some time in the nearby inhabitants and get an idea of the local culture and life. The excellent weather near the ridge will make your trekking experience even more awesome. Walk on this charming trail through the forest and several rivulets and witness the dazzling 180 degree view of the Dhauladhar range and Kinnaur peaks.
This is such a tranquil location filling your souls with halcyon and adventure at the same time. The newly opened IIT near to the lake will butcher the serenity of the lake in the coming years.
Settles between two high mountain ranges, this trek to the lake of Prashar has a maximum elevation of 8956 ft or 2730 metres.
This is an easy graded trek which perfectly blends with its environs. This trek could be completed within 2 days with ease and focus.
This one of the famous offbeat Himalayan treks can be visited in the winter months of December and January, when the lake is covered with thick layers of snow, making it look like icing on the cake.
As it is located near to the temple, it witnesses a lot of pilgrims and thus is a great trekking location for a family trip. Prashar lies near to the city of Mandi in Himachal Pradesh. Accompanied by snow capped peaks, this trek could be approached through Drang.
6) Nagtibba Trek
Also known as Serpent’s peak, a very popular tourist destination and adventure spot. Located at foothills of Garhwal this is one of the most famous Himalayan treks. The natural haven, a perfect getaway destination for trekkers.
Nag Tibba trek is filled with rich and diverse flora and fauna. It is considered as the abode of Snake God. Ravish in the stunning views of Bandarpoonch peak, the Gangotri group of peaks, Srikanth peak, Kedarnath peak in the north, Doon valley and the snow peaks of Changabang. Unravel the enticing mixed forests of Oak, Rhododendron, Cider and Alpine.
Nag Tibba is popular for its altitude, reaching up to 9915 ft at max, where you can witness a small temple perched upon the Nag Tibba ‘Jhandi’, the highest point of the trek.
It is easy to moderate level trek, perfect for your getaway. As the base could be reached by jeep, this trek is easily accessible for people of all age groups having a moderate experience in hiking.
The Nag Tibba trek is suitable to be trekked on throughout the year. However, Nag Tibba is a famous winter trek, therefore should be explored in winter months from December to March, when the temperature is 15 degrees at max.
The highest peak in the lesser Himalayan region is Nag Tibba. This destination in Uttarakhand is situated near Dehradun. It is also at close proximity from Mussoorie and could be reached easily from Delhi.
7) Rupin Pass Trek
Rupin Pass trek is a high altitude Himalayan Trek, with snowed peaks, provides scenic views at every corner and every turn you turn. The path is a difficult one, but the beauty of Rupin Pass will mesmerise you till the last step.
Rupin Pass journey is a sheer extravaganza for any avid trekker. During your trek, you will be accompanied by gushing Rupin blue Waters, providing a pinch of peace. These water streams are calm at places and sprawling at others. As you make your way up the pass, feast your eyes with snow fields and a whiff of the local culture in Rupin Pass trek.
This pass has a maximum elevation of 15250 ft, above the sea and is mostly in the uninhabited region. The high altitude in not just the sole reason for its popularity among travellers, but the diversified number of sceneries and sudden variations in this trial also attracts many nature lovers.
The Rupin Pass trekking path is considered a difficult one, which requires about 10 days to complete. What makes it even more difficult is the slippery mud and hard snow at some parts. It is not just about terrain but other factors which make it a taxing trek to walk on.
The Rupin pass trek can be visited in the summer and winter months. From May to July, the temperature is pleasant for a lovely trek, meandering between 15-25 degrees. However, Winters are much cooler and September to October, the trek is accessible with the moderate temperature at daytime and freezing temperature at nights. A physically fit person can plan a trek.
Rupin pass trek has trails of carved wooden bridges and snowed rocks, situated in the Himalayan Mountain Range of Himachal Pradesh. Starting from Dhaula in Uttarakhand and ending at Sangla in Himachal Pradesh.
8) Chandrashila Trek
Chandrashila literally means MOON ROCK and is one of the lesser known Himalayan treks. There are various stories which prevail related to this trek. It is also considered as the sacred place where Lord Rama meditated after defeating the evil king Ravana. This amazing trekking trail offers a 360 degree panorama view of the boastful Himalayas.
You will encounter the majestic views of Nanda Devi, Kedarnath, Nilkanth and Panchachuli, some of the picturesque peaks during your trek. It is a perfect location for novice trekkers to hike in the bounty of nature at Chandrashila trek. Discover the glorious and stunning trekking trail from Deoria Tal to Chandrashila.
The major attraction of this trek is the Tung Nath temple which invites various devotees to this place. This trail goes through rocky meadows and deep forests as it ascends gently from its base camp.
Chandrashila trek has a maximum elevation of 4000 metres, above sea level.
The Chandrashila trek is quite an easy trek, which requires some amount of stamina and physical fitness. This is not a very lengthy trek, a mere walk of some km. However, the climb from the sacred temple to Chandrashila peak can cause strain on your legs, therefore, it recommended to go easy.
In the months of May and June, you will encounter snow which will make the whole experience beautiful yet tricky. This one of the lesser known Himalayan treks can be visited from April to June and from October to December in winters.
This trek is accessible through Haridwar and Delhi as it is situated in Uttarakhand. Chopta Chandrashila Trek can be initiated from the Haridwar or Ukhimath as it is in the Garhwal region of Himalayas. Go trekking in the lap of nature among whiff of fresh mountain air.
9) Dayara Bugyal Trek
The popular Dayara Bugyal means high altitude meadow, and undoubtedly is one of inviting high altitude meadow in the Himalayas. Get the picturesque view of the great Himalayan peaks standing in this bouldered trekking pass.
It acquires the second position after Bedni Bugyal as a most beautiful meadow in India. Dayara Bugyal Trek is one the lesser known Himalayan treks. It is a pleasurable 7 km trek where you can confront either lush green meadows or purity of white snow dunes on the very first day of the trek The Dayara is believed to be having an abundance of grass and shepherds from nearby villages came to graze their flocks of cattle. Over the years, its popularity has reached explorers which turned this into a great tourist destination.
The popular meadow trek of Dayara Bugyal has a maximum elevation of 12000 ft. which offers tranquilizing views of Bhagirathi peaks and reflections of mountains in the clear streams below.
This 6 days long trek is graded as an easy trek to climb on. This is a good trek with flower sprung meadows and sprawling grasslands. This trek is a perfect start for beginners.
The best time for planning your trip to the Dayara Bugyal trek is from April to June. Also, can be visited between September and October.
This amazing trek destination is located in Garhwal Region of Uttarakhand. Dayara Bugyal Meadow is situated in Uttarkashi district and is an aesthetic location for vivid trekkers.
10) Chandratal Lake Trek
Popularly known as the moon lake, Chandratal lake trek with Hampta Pass is a popular trekking destination in Ladakh. It has everything that is exciting and is at close proximity with Kunzum pass and Lahaul region.
This is a spectacular tourist spot, vividly located for its wilderness and round shape. This lake trek gets even more exciting in the winters when the whole region is covered by snow making it a perfect wonderland. It is believed that Chandratal lake is located at a place, from where the chariot of the Lord Indra picked up Yudhishthira, the eldest of the Pandava brothers.
As a result, this grabbed the attention of the Hindu pilgrims who flock in to experience the enchanting Chandratal Lake.
This high altitude Chandratal lake trek has an altitude of 14000 ft above the sea and is an exquisite walk beginning from Manali, and ending at Chandra Valley.
It is easy to moderate grade trek, which witnesses ample amount of visitors and Hindu devotees. If you are planning a hike to Chandratal, you must be knowing how to tackle challenging streams and difficult terrain region of Lahaul.
The best time visit this enchanting lake trek is from June to mid of October, as apart from these months, the Chandratal Lake can become inaccessible due to a high level of streams flowing.
This moon shaped trek is located in the Spiti district of Himachal Pradesh, in the valley of Spiti in the Lahaul.