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  • India dwells world’s largest tiger population, it has an array of Tiger Reserves and National Parks that are not only the royal beast’s natural habitat but also places of enticing beauty and heavenly charm. These reserves portray nature at its ultimate best, leaving the tourists awestruck and captivated with vivid pictures imprinted forever in their memory.

    These reserves offer exciting sightseeing opportunities for all those who are passionate about nature and worship its unadulterated beauty.

    Here is a list of the best 11 Tiger Reserves in India:

  • 01Jim Corbett Tiger Reserve, Uttarakhand

    Image Credit : Moni Sertel

    Named after the legendary hunter turned conservationist Corbett, this National Park was set up in 1936. It is often considered as India’s first National Park and has an interesting variety of fauna and flora.

    It is located in the Patli Dun valley in the state of Uttar Pradesh and covers an enormous core area of 500 sq km. Situated at the base of Himalayas and on the banks of river Ramganga, this park is gifted with breathtaking landscapes. This is one few tiger reserves in India that provides a wonderful experience in nature.

    The tiger reserve has been divided into five regions with each region offering great tours. The five different tourism zones are Dhikala, Bijrani, Jhirna, Domunda and Sonanadi. Among these, the Dhikala and Bijrani also jungle tour and elephant safari.

    Each of this five regions are accessible through a dedicated gate. Every gate has different entry/exit timings and is accessible for different months of the year. It is advisable to contact park officials or refer to their website before making a visit.

    Image Credits : Arno Meintjes

    Safari rides around this reserve provides a panoramic view of the lush grassland. The flora of this tiger reserve is highly varied and the purest forms of Sal trees are known to grow here. Many trees that cannot be spotted elsewhere in the country is easily found here.

    Corbett is home to over 585 species of birds, seven species of amphibians, 33 species of reptiles, seven species of fishes and 37 species of dragonflies. Some of the animals found here include Bengal tigers, crocodiles, leopards and elephants. The majestic Bengal tigers of this region remains camouflaged within the shrubs and one has to get lucky to spot them.

    As personal vehicles are not permitted inside the park, an elephant and jeep safari can help you explore its vast terrain. Opting for elephant that covers the core and the buffer zone of the park as well. Corbett Park also offers other adventurous activities like rafting, bridge slithering and river crossing on the Kosi river.

    Corbett was the first National Park to come under the ‘Project Tiger’ which aims at preserving this endangered species. Accommodation is never a problem at Corbett, though it is advisable to contact your travel advisors in advance. Road distance from Delhi to this reserve is 290 km while Ramnagar is the nearest railway station situated at a distance of about 50 km from the Park. The nearest airport is in Delhi.


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  • 02Ranthambore Tiger Reserve, Rajasthan

    Image Credit : Tambako

    Ranthambore is one of the country’s largest National Parks covering an area of 1,134 sq km. Located in Sawai Madhopur district of south-eastern Rajasthan, this tiger reserve was once the most sought after hunting destination of the royal Jaipur Maharajas.

    The ancient fort located in the reserve premises are a favorite spot of tigers and leopards. This reserve also homes sloth bears, hyenas, Indian foxes, jackals and crocodiles.

    This National park in Ranthambore has three lakes namely Padam Talao, Raj Talao and Malik Talao, where wildlife flocks to a great extent. This tiger reserve is famous for its diurnal tigers which are a blessing to all nature lovers and wildlife photographers. This reserve also breeds many marsh croc reptiles that include tortoises, Indian python, Russell's vipers and many other species.

    Image Credits : Allan Hopkins


    The kachida valley located in the reserve outskirts has a generous population of panthers too. Another popular destination is the Raj-Bagh ruin that is located among two lakes. The ideal time to visit this tiger reserve is between February and March. The nearest town is Sawai Madhopur that is 11 km away and is also the nearest railhead. The nearest airport is at Jaipur, situated at 145 kilometers from Ranthambore.


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  • 03Sunderban Tiger Reserve, West Bengal

    Image Credit : Tambako

    Covering a massive area of 2585 sq km, Sunderban is home to the much acclaimed Royal Bengal tiger. It also houses a large number of highly endangered species that include aquatic mammals and reptiles. This tiger reserve has numerous creeks and tributaries that come from three rivers namely Ganges, Brahmaputra and Meghna.

    A UNESCO world heritage site, this tiger reserve is located at the southern most tip of West Bengal, the place where the wetland meets the glorious sea. Apart from being the largest tiger reserve and National Park in the Indian Subcontinent, it also has the largest mangrove forest and has an unique estuarine mangrove ecosystem that has amazed environmentalists to a great extent.

    This tiger reserve derives its name from the ‘Sundari’ tree. The central area of this reserve has its own natural boundaries with the river Matla on its West, the river Haribhanga on its East and with Netidhopani and Gosba in the North. These attributes make this tiger reserve an absolute paradise, a majority of which is unexplored.

    Unlike other National Park and Tiger Reserves in India where jeeps and roads serve for sightseeing purposes, Sunderbans uses boats for transportation and sightseeing. The rivers have an overwhelming effect on the nature lovers and its unimaginable dangers leave the adventurists vigilant and prepared for everything.

    Sunderbans is home to 400 tigers.The aqua fauna also includes a diverse array of fish, crabs, crocodiles and Ridley sea turtles. In fact, Sunderbans’ highly productive ecosystem also acts as a natural fishing nursery.

    There are about 248 bird species that can be found here including a large number of migratory birds that visit the park during winter months every year. Thus, a healthy bird population makes this destination ideal for bird watchers and bird photography.

    This is one of the few tiger reserves in India that is open for tourist access from the months of September to March. The finest time to visit is between December and February.

    It is during this time that migratory birds make a striking appearance and enthrall spectators. The nearest town to this reserve is Gosaba which is about 50 km away. Canning is the nearest railhead that is 48km away from the reserve. The nearest airport is at Calcutta, 112 km away.

  • 04Kanha Tiger Reserve, Madya Pradesh

    Image Credit : Cloud tail

    Kanha Tiger Reserve is situated in Madhya Pradesh and spreads across an area of 940 sq km. This wildlife reserve was established in 1955 with the sole purpose of preserving a few endangered species. The name Kanha comes from the name of a clay like soil, Kanhar that is found in the low lying land of this region.

    The mesmerizing topography which includes a horseshoe shaped valley has earned this ‘Tiger land’ an immortal depiction. The Banjar forests and the Halon valley in this reserve offer a picturesque sight. The open grassy meadows and the magnanimous forest has a mesmerizing and heart-warming effect on nature lovers and it's also regarded as one of the best Tiger reserves in India.

    In addition, the crystal clear streams randomly flowing across the landscape makes a profound impact that lasts for ages. The best location here is the sunset point called Bamni Dadar that one cannot afford to miss.

    Image Credits : Nara Simhan


    Apart from tigers, this reserve pets bison, gaur, sambar, chital and many more species. What deserves a special mention is the hard-ground Barasingha, also called the swamp deer, an endangered species that can be found only here.

    There are many tour packages offered in this reserve that extends from days to weeks and one can opt for a suitable package based on their convenience and availability. Tourists flock in great numbers during April, May and June.

    There are plenty of places to stay in and around Kanha. The nearest town is Mandla which is 65 km by road. The closest railway junction is Jabalpur, at a distance of 160 km and the nearest airport is in Nagpur which is 266 km away.

     

  • 05Tadoba National Park, Maharashtra

    For the wildlife enthusiast who are seeking for some adventure and want to take some good pictures of the tigers then Tadoba National Park is the perfect place for you. The national park is one of the largest and the oldest National Park which has various psecies of animals and trees. Tadoba National Park is situated at the core of a reserved forest and coners an area of 1725 sq.km. The whole firest is overshadowed by teak and bamboo. Get amazed by the magical landscape of the marshlands, lakes and the rigged cliffs. You can find a variety of wildlife like panthers, tigers, hyenas, sloth bears, wild dogs, jackals, barking deer, bison, sambar and deer.
    Explore the wildlife with the Gypsy and Jeep Safaris which are always available in Tadoba National Park. To get the real taste of the wildlife the best time to visit is from February to May, Gaurs, tigers, herd of deer and other animals can be spotted at this time of the year.
    If you are taking a flight then Nagpur (140 Km) is the nearest airport from where it takes 3 hour taxi rides to reach the park. You can also take the train to Chandrapur (49 kms) from the reserve.
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    Tadoba Tiger Safari, Chandrapur

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  • 06Satpura National Park, Madhya Pradesh

    Image Credit : wikipedia
    Your wildlife exploration would not be complete without visiting the Satpura National Park in Madhya Pradesh. This national park was established in the year 1981. Satpura National Park is located in Hoshangabad district of Madhya Pradesh in Central India and spreads over an area of 1427 sq.km. This wildlife is famous for the tiger which roams around freely. For the wildlife lovers this place is the best option for you. There are variety of other wildlife like 50 species of mammals, 254 species of birds, 30 species of reptiles, 50 species of butterflies and much more.
    Once you reach the reserve you can enjoy jeep safari, elephant safari, walking safari and boat safari.
    Satpura National park is close to Pachmarhi hill station and can be easily travelled by road from cities like Bhopal, Jabalpur, Chindwara, and Nagpur. If you are travelling by train than you can take the Sohagpur station which is about 20kms from national park.
  • 07Pench National Park, Madhya Pradesh

    There is yet another national park which is a striking one on our list. For the nature admirers and the wildlife lovers this park is a treat. Nestled in the lower southern reaches of the satpuda hills is named after Pench River Pench National Park covers an area of 758 sq km.The national park boasts of 25 tigers. They are usually seen around the Pench River, as the density of prey population is higher here. The National Park has many other species of flora and fauna. There are around more than 210 species of birds, including a host of migratory species.
    The best time to visit the park is between February and April. This park remains closed during the month of July, August and September.
    The park is well connected with major places. It can be accessed by road as well as railway. The nearest rail-head is at Ramtek and a bus can be taken for the next 35 km to the Park.
  • 08Nagarhole National Park, Karnataka

    Head out to this amazing Nagarhole National Park which is well known for tigers. This national park covers an area of enchanting 247 square-mile Park in Karnataka. The interesting thing about this park is that it is counted among India’s best wildlife park for the large bison and elephant. You can also find a variety of animals and about 250 species of bird. Get amazed by the tranquillity of the place as you stroll through the grassy land and the shallow valleys.
    The best time to visit this place is during the dry season of February till June.
    You can take a flight to the nearest airports are Mysore which is about 96 km and from Bangalore 236 km.
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  • 09Bandipur National Park, Karnataka

    Image Credit : wikipedia
    Bandipur National Park is situated in Mysore and Chamarajanagar districts of Karnataka. This reserve was once a hunting ground for the Kings. The National Park was established in the year 1974 as a forest tiger reserve under the Project Tiger. The park covers an area 874 sq. km and has many endangered species like tigers and elephants.
    One can find other species of animals like Four-horned Antelope, Indian Muntjac, Indian Pangolin, Mongoose, Indian Hare Red and Indian Giant Squirrel. This national park is covered by vast greenery. As monsoons are unpredictable here but the rainy seasons makes it cleaner and greener as a result this park becomes an abode for the wildlife.
    The wildlife park is 220 km from Bangalore, 80 km from Mysore and 80 kms from Ooty.
    The nearest airport is at Bangalore which is 220 km from Bandipur.
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  • 10Periyar Tiger Reserve, Kerala

    Still searching for some wildlife sanctuary then check out the Periyar Tiger Reserve in Kerela which is the most popular wildlife sanctuary. This Reserve forest is mainly known for its natural beauty and wildlife. The enchanting surroundings and the bio diversity is the perfect example of nature’s creation. Periyar Tiger Reserve spreads over an area of 777 sq. km. There is an artificial lake which was created by the British during 1895.
    Get stunned by the enchanting beauty of the region with the mountain scenery and the wildlife. The forest is a home to sambar, wild boar, langur, 900 to 1000 elephants. There are about 35 to 40 tigers which are very rarely spotted here.
    The Reserve is open throughout the year. But the best time to visit is during the winter months of November to February as the weather remains pleasant.
    If you are travelling by flight then Madurai Airport just at a distance of 140 km. If you are travelling by train than Kottayam Railway Station is just 114 km away from the Periyar Tiger Reserve.
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  • 11Nagzira Wildlife sanctuary, Maharashtra

    Located at the Northeastern corner of the Bhandara district lies the Nagzira Wildlife Sanctuary. This reserve covers an area of about 152 sq. km. This reserve forest is garlanded with a picturesque landscape with a variety of wildlife. The Wildlife Sanctuary has 34 species of mammals, 166 species of birds, 36 species of reptiles and four species of amphibians. Some of the main wildlife of this sanctuary are the tiger, bison, wild boar and wild dog.
    Although the sanctuary is opened all year round but the best time to visit this sanctuary is during the month of April and May.
    You can drive from Sakoli which will be about 22 km. If you are taking a flight then you can take the flight to Nagpur airport. 
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Attractions

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Pangong Lake

Rather, the most sought after tourist destination is Pangong Tso in Ladakh region. It is the highest among the high altitude lakes in India which is filled with saline water but provides some awe-struck moments to the visitors with the unbelievable phenomenon of changing colours quite a number of times a day.

The reflections of the towering Himalayan peaks in the water add more charm to the lake. Currently, Pangong Tso is the favorite location for tourists as the banks of the lake give soothing bed to relax and the nearby places are enhanced by the beauty of this particular lake. The quiet lake is 134 km in length and 5 km in width is situated at an altitude of 14270 meters. But the major share of the lake lies in the area of China. Now, its recognition is spread everywhere in the world because it is termed as a wetland of international importance under the Ramsar Convention.

The highly saline water does not accommodate any water species not even micro-organisms. But the banks of the lake give space for several birds and animals very rarely seen in the other parts of India. It is an important breeding ground for many migratory birds as well.

Height: The lake is located at an altitude of 4250 meters above the sea level.

Location: Pangong Tso is easily accessible as it can be reached after a five hour drive from Leh and the travel would be on a rough and dramatic mountain road. You will cross the villages of Shey and Gya during the tour and go through Chang La as well.

Best time to visit: The months from May to September are the ideal time to visit the lake as the other seasons may cause challenges due to the heavy snowfall.

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Nubra Valley

Something divine makes Nubra Valley close to heart and it is not an exaggeration but a fact that experienced and shared by the countless tourists visited the paradisiacal location in Jammu and Kashmir. Without touching the spectacular roads of Nubra Valley, a Ladakh tour will not be complete. The tri armed valley has Diskit Village as its capital. Ldumra, a magnificent name is the original name of the valley as the local scholars insist. Ldumra means Valley of Flowers. The large valley is formed after the merging of Shyok River with Nubra or Siachen River causing the separation of the Ladakh and the Karakoram Ranges. The valley is located 10000 feet that is 3048 meters above mean sea level and those who cross the Khardung La Pass can easily come to Nubra Valley from Leh.

Except the river beds, every other place in the valley shows scant vegetation and low precipitation levels. Most of the villages in the valley are occupied by Nubra skat speakers and in the villages, one can find lush greenery and farming which happen through the regular irrigation. Diskit is the place where native people are seen in abundance and Diskit Monastery is the entre of attraction as well. The Shyok River flowing on one side of Diskit has a captivating effect on the visitors. Nubra Valley unwinds a lot of surprising sights when you visit it and an unbelievable fact is that the valley was open to the public till Hunder until 2010. Beyond Hunder, it was the greener region in the lower altitude where the Turtuk village exists. Till 2010, the Government did not allow tourists to mesmerize themselves in the magnificent beauty of Turtuk where numerous apricot trees and other vegetation along with the tribal community were preserved as a virgin.

Height: 3048 meters above the sea level

Location: The paradisiacal Nubra Valley is located at a distance of 140 km from Leh and the main road access to the valley is through Khardung La pass where you have to show the photocopies of your travel permit to the soldiers camping.

Best time to visit: The months from June to September is the perfect period to visit Nubra Valley

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Khardung La

Controversies regarding the proclamation that Khardung La is the highest motorable pass in the world is not yet diminished but Ladakh travelers still believe that it is the highest and most adventurous pass in the world. Despite the controversies, Khardung La keeps on attracting hundreds of adventure seekers every year, be it bikers, trekkers or visitors. Nestled amidst the most reverberating surrounding, the ‘Pass of Lower Castle’ is located at an altitude of 17582 feet. Near to the pass, the collection of awesome valleys will lure you and along with the natural extravaganzas, the Tibetan prayer flags are an additional charm.

The pass was constructed in the year of 1976 and later in 1988, it was opened to public and from then on, the pass was inviting uncountable bikers, trekkers and tourists. It is maintained by the Border roads Organization as the pass is highly significant and important to India because it was once used to carry supplies to the Siachen Glacier. Recently, Khardung La became the hot potato of the town with a happy news that a ten member team of visually impaired people is going to conquer the pass through cycling in 2017.

Height: Khardung La is located at an altitude of 5359 meters. But there is an incorrect proclamation on the signboards appear here saying that the height of the pass is 18379 feet.

Location: The highest motorable pass in Ladakh is lying about 39 kms away from Leh. By road, one can reach the pass. The first 24 kms of the road are paved and from there to the North Pullu check post, the 15 kms of the road are filled with loose rock, dirt and occasional rivulets formed after the melting of snow.

Best time to visit: The season between May to October is the best time to visit Khardung La.

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Tso Moriri Lake

It won’t be exceeding at all how much you describe the beauty of Tso Moriri in Ladakh, a highly protected lake in Changthang Region and a significant portion of Tso Moriri Wetland Conservation Reserve.  It is the largest of all high altitude lakes in India especially in Ladakh and is located at an altitude of 4522 meters above the sea level. The length comes to 26 km north to south and 3 to 5 km is the width and the water is wholly brackish. 

The water to feed the lake comes from the springs and melted snow from the nearby mountains. There are two major stream systems to lead the water to the lake. One in the north part of the lake and the other comes in the southwest part. Huge, extensive marshes are seen at both the entrances of the lake. Rupshu Valley, a breathtaking area is the guardian of Tso Moriri along with an array of the lofty Himalayan Mountains in the surrounding.

The number of people come to witness the beauty of this splendid lake is lesser when compared to that of Pangong Lake. It is because of the secluded location of the lake. Hence, it is a favorite home town for many migratory birds. They come to breed here especially birds like great- crested grebe, the brown-headed gull and the Brahmin duck. The rare Himalayan hares are also abundantly seen near the lake. Thus, the declaration of the lake as a reserved area is a right option to protect these species from extinction. Less human interference would keep their lives strong.

Height: The lake is situated at an altitude of 4522 meters.

Location: You can reach Tso Moriri via road from Leh. It is 150 kms away from Leh Airport. Kalka Railway station is the nearest one to the lake. You will get buses and taxis from the station as well.

Best time to visit: May, June, July and August are the peak season when tourists come to Tso Moriri in large numbers and other months will be filled with snow and have extreme cold conditions.

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Shanti Stupa

The white dome of Shanti Stupa is clearly visible from a far distance when you are on a tour of Leh. Peace Pagoda got its name like that because of many reasons mainly the silence persists in and around the pagoda always. This Buddhist prayer center is the most beloved attraction in Jammu and Kashmir. At a height of 4267 meters, the two storied stupa stands holding its head high and overlooks the bustling Leh town. The uneven mountain terrains in the surrounding gives the pagoda a remarkable shining. It is at a location which is 5 km away from Leh town and one who visits the stupa has to climb five hundred steps. The exotic view of the Himalayan peaks turns the beauty of the stupa also, a peace lover would dedicate his life to have such overjoying moments.

History

The stupa was constructed by both Japanese and Ladakh Buddhists. The construction was started in 1983, many Buddhists and Indian Government officials have supervised the procedures throughout.

Structure of the stupa

Among the two structures of the pagoda, the first level depicts the central relief of Dharmachakra which has deer on each side and the turning wheel of Dharma also has a golden image of Buddha at the center. The second level displays images which show the birth of Budhha and the death as well. In addition, both the level have smaller images of Buddha meditating. The stupa came into existence in order to spread the word of peace and harmony among people and it came into establishment as a commemoration of the valuable 2500 years of Buddhism.

Location: Any one can reach the stupa via road from Leh, only 5 kms from the town, a walk of fifteen minutes would require.

Timings: 05:00 am to 09:00 pm

Highlights: The sunset and sunrise views from the stupa are inevitably beautiful


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Magnetic Hill

Magnetic Hill is still a mystery yet a famed attraction that pulls the adventure lovers on a large scale toward it. A mystifying phenomenon which stunts the science and fiction together and exists as a magic to the normal people visiting here. Magnetic Hill is a trump card of every Ladakh tour because of the awe-struck moments it would promise the travelers. There is a sign board placed which says that the hill defies gravity completely and inviting everyone to experience the magical phenomenon.

 If you keep your vehicle in neutral at a position marked on the road and wait, you will be surprised to see the vehicle starts moving uphill at 10-20 km per hour. And this is the unexplainable feature of Magnetic Hill that confuses the world of science. It is located on Leh-Kargil-Baltic Highway and on the east, the beautiful Sindhu River is flowing calmly. Near the hill there is a Sikh Gurudwara maintained by the Indian Army. Due to the natural attraction as well as the human architectural brilliance, the hill has gained popularity in a short term. 

Not just the vehicles hitting the road but the aircrafts and helicopters crossing the radius which Magnetic Hill comes in would feel the same magnetic effect. If the aircrafts are going on a slow pace, then it starts jerking while they are in the circumference of the hill. So the only solution to escape from the clutches of this phenomenon is that the crafts should move at a greater speed.

Height: Magnetic Hill is located at an elevation of 14000 feet above the sea level.

Location: To reach the hill, you can hit the Leh-Kargil-Baltic National Highway and it is situated at a distance of just 30 kms from Leh town.

Best time to visit: The best time to visit the Magnetic Hill is from June to October.

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Chadar Trek

For some years, adventure seekers all around the world have been talking about Chadar Trek in the Zanskar Region. Until this year, hundreds of people have experienced the thrill hidden and the mind blowing sights around Chadar frozen river. In fact, Chadar Trek is the most sought after and one of the breathtaking treks in the Himalayas. The winter trek is so special for those who are ready to have adventure at the maximum level. 

The river trek starts from Chilling where the river begins to freeze and mostly, travelers choose February as the best time to cross the frozen river as the ice sheets will be comparatively stable. The precarious snow-flakes would pose severe threats during the trek but in some other time, the challenges would be kind to the trekker. The surrounding of the river are completely vertical cliffs tall up to 600 meters. The Zanskar River is a tributary of the Indus and is 5 meters long. 

A trekker would have to cover 16 kms per day to complete the Chadar Trek. Usually, people opt for 10-15 days of trek depending on the climatic conditions persisting here. The temperature at Chadar will come to the lowest at -35 degree Celsius during winter and thus Chadar Trek becomes more intimidating. Approximate trekking distance one would have to cover in total is 75 kms.

Maximum altitude: 11123 feet is the height at which Chadar Trek would lead you to.

Location: To take part in Chadar Trek, one should arrive in Leh and from Leh, the journey starts and goes to Chilling, the beginning of the Zanskar River in the frozen state. From Leh it would take about 65-70 kms to reach Tilad via Chilling, the base camp of the trek.

Best time to visit: January end to February is the best time suitable for trekking in the frozen river of Chadar. Quality and safe trekking gears and highly warm clothes are required.

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Markha Valley Trek

Adventure lovers always had an affection to Markha Valley and still it fulfills the dreams of a trekker or adventure seeker with the unrivalled collection of natural spectacle. Long day trekking tours are offered by a lot of tour providers all over India which promise a journey through the most scenic locations and villages. The awesomely exciting feature of this trek is that it will let the trekker cross two high altitude passes in Ladakh; Gandala La at 4980 meters and Kongmaru La at 5276 meters.

 Being one of the diverse treks in Ladakh region, Markha Valley trek offers a lot of adventurous moments throughout. The barren land of Ladakh and the Buddhist temples found throughout the journey make the trek special. The route winds past the Ladakhi villages and it goes to Hemis National Park where the chances to spot some rare wildlife species are comparably high. The nomadic groups of people will be a unique picture to keep in heart. The symbols of Buddhism like ‘chortens’, stupas, multi colored prayer flags and numerous monasteries narrate the story of Buddhist culture embraced Markha centuries ago. Another interesting fact heard about Markha Valley trek is that it is also called ‘tea house trek’ due to the accommodation provided in parachute tents in most of the villages during the tour.

Maximum altitude: 15000 feet is the maximum altitude the trek will cover.

Location: In most of the cases, the trek starts from Leh. The trail usually goes through Chilling, Skyu and then to Markha. From Markha it would take the trekker to reach Hankar and Nimaling and finally return to Leh. The ideal trekking distance is 75 kms and it would be graded as difficult.

Best time to visit: The months of June, July, August, September and October are recommended as the best time to do Markha Valley trek.

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Stok Kongri Trek

Stok Kangri, Ladakh is one of the most popular places for high altitude trekking in India. Although the beauty of Ladakh draws in innumerable tourists and trekkers from all over the country and the world, the Stok Kangri trek isn’t really suited for anyone and everyone.

It is advisable that only experienced trekkers set out on this expedition as the climatic and geographical conditions of the place may not suit novice or amateur trekkers. Nonetheless, Stok Kangri is one of the most beautiful tourist destinations in the country. It is for this reason that the Stok Kangri trek forms an inevitable experience while trekking in India.

The trek begins from Leh, which is noted for its natural beauty as well as the warm and hospitable people. During the first couple of days of the trek, you can move around Leh, go sightseeing and get acclimatized to the weather of the region. These couple of days will prepare you for the trek ahead. You will next be taken to Chang Ma via Stok Village by road.

The journey from Leh to Stok Village takes you to witness the amiable yet fictional setting which includes lush greenery, glistening snow peaks and scenic splendor of the region in this stretch. On reaching Chang Ma, you reach a snow covered region and begin trekking. You will need to climb on for about three hours. From here you will head on to Manokorma, which is at an elevation of 14200 feet.

During the trek, you will be able to view some very beautiful peaks such as the Gulap Kangri, Parcha Kangri, etc. The base camp of the trek is at an elevation of 16, 300 feet. From here, the journey continues till you reach the Stok Kangri. The rewarding scenery from the top is what draws trekkers from all over the world to high altitude trekking in India. The trek back to Leh is a bit arduous and you may need to be careful while climbing down the mountainous terrain.

Best Season: June - October

Difficulty Level: Medium

Max. Elevation: 5000 m

Number of Days: Maximum 10 days of trek can be done here

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Manali

From Manali, breathtaking views of the Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal ranges are a perennial specialty. This is the place where mountain adventures takes on a new dimension. A haven for tourists, Manali is replete with scenic quotients offering trekking enthusiasts an experience of its own kind.

Attracting visitors from all over the world all year round, this is a place for backpackers to explore the serene settings of the Himalayas. It is also the place where adventure tourists can enjoy exhilarating activities such as paragliding, rafting and skiing while on Manali to Leh Road trip.

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Roopkund Trek

Counted among the best treks in India, the Roopkund trail is a trekker’s paradise. Roopkund’s topography is complete with verdant forests, acres and acres of open meadows, trickling brooks, and the celestial snow of course. Roopkund also comprises of the eerie Skeletal Lake, and is great for one’s initiation into high-altitude trekking. Pre-monsoon and post-monsoon seasons make Roopkund one of the compulsory trekking places near Delhi.

Distance from Delhi: 308 Kilometres approximately

Nearest Railhead: Kathgodam Railway Station

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Kuari Pass Trek

Kuari Pass which signifies doorway is one of the best treks in Uttaranchal. It is also known as Curzon trail as this trekking trail was discovered by Lord Curzon in 1905. The panoramic views of the eastern slopes of the majestic Garhwal Himalayas, Neelkanth, Mana, Hathi Ghori Parvat, Bertholi, Trishul, Dronagiri, Kamet and Nanda Devi peaks can be experienced on Kuari Pass Trek.

The trek has dense deodar, ok and rhododendron forests which present a picturesque view. Rare and protected flora and fauna can be found on this trail.  The trek passes via major rivers like Mandakini, Kaliganga and Dhauli Ganga .The ideal time to visit here is in summers.

Best Season: December - January
Duration: 6-8 Days
Max. Elevation: 4,264 m

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Dodital Trek

Dodital trek is a short trek and must to do when you are on trekking in Uttaranchal tour. Difficulty ranges from easy to moderate through thick forests and across majestic Himalayas landscapes, large meadows and stream crossings.  

The trek begins from Sangamchatti (kalyani) road near Uttarkashi and completes at the Hanumanchatti. From Dodital Lake, you will need to trek uphill to reach the Darwa pass, also called as Bakaria Khaga pass. The alpine meadows of Kanasar are an ideal place for camping.

Best season: May - October
Duration: 10 Days
Altitude: 4150 m

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The Castle Manali

Built in 1460 AD, the Naggar Castle has a unique architecture that comprises of stones and wood. About a century ago, this castle of Raja Sidh Singh of Kullu was converted into a rest house, and presently it is being taken care by the Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation.

In its rechristened avatar, the castle is now The Castle Heritage Hotel. Naggar Castle came into the limelight after a bollywood movie was shot here. A grand Tibetan carnival dance was shot here and hence this castle grew in touristic prominence.


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Van Vihar National Park

One of the most frequent places to visit in Manali, the Van Vihar National Park attracts visitors mainly because of its ideal location, which is bang on the Mall road in Manali. The park is a welcome respite from the crowds and the pollution with its tall and shady groves of Deodar, birch and pine. There are a number of wooden and concrete benches within the park, which provide rest, relaxation and recreation to its visitors.

Take off your shoes and take a leisurely walk across the garden paths of this wonderful haven of nature. You could also have fun cruising around in a boat that sails in the small pond within the vicinity of this park. Set amidst beautiful and verdant environs, the park is a perfect respite for anyone who chooses to visit it and makes up for a great place for a spontaneous picnic or simply a long walk!

Timing:

08:00 am – 07:00 pm (summer)

08:00 am – 05:00 pm (winter)

Entry Fee: 10 INR per Person

Photography Allowed: Yes

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Gyuto Monastery

Gyuto Monastery is one of the most famous and popular monasteries in Tibet. This monastery is well known for its tantric meditation and people there study a lot about this subject. It is also known for its various tantric ritual arts and Buddhist philosophy. Gyuto monastery was founded in the year 1474 by the prime disciple of the 1st Dalai Lama.

Location: It is situated in the town of Dharamshala which is easy to reach through road, rail as well as airways. Transportation is not a major issue while visiting the place.

Highlights: You can find majestic statues of Buddha with a backdrop of snow clad mountains covering it. If you want to have a nice afternoon, it is the most peaceful and serene place to be at.



Best time to visit: Since this is a monastery, there is no particular season that makes any difference. However, if you are planning a full trip of the place, April-May has to be the best months.