Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wilderness is a necessity.
– John Muir
And the numbers are only going to get better. Gradually, there has been an increase in the number of people taking up treks in India and learning that it can be a lot of life and recreation.
The following treks near Delhi can be done in a weekend/extended one. I would though always recommend adding a day to explore places nearby and so that you are not in any kind of hurry. Take your time. That is the objective.
Tips before trek:
- Trekking may not be a walk in a park. Don’t let the exhaustion wear you down. Just keep on taking small steps and moving forward. Jogging and squats from two weeks prior to trek will help.
- Do not bring your home/city/comfort to the trek. You already are home.
Triund undoubtedly is one of the most popular treks in India and is the best for a novice. It can be covered in a weekend although it would be better if you take another day and spend some time exploring places nearby.
Breathtaking views all along the trail and view of the snow-capped mountains from the top. This trek can be a perfect start for your next trekking adventures.
While you would find posts terming it as an easy one, it is definitely going to trouble absolute beginners who have no experience. It would take around 3.5-5 hours to cover the 9kms trek from Mcleodganj or 7kms from Dharamkot. I would recommend one to spend a couple of weeks jogging and preparing for the trek. The trek can be done either from Mcleodganj or Dharamkot. Snowline is an option if you have an urge to trek further. (Snowline is about 1-1.5 hours from Triund)
Moral Duty: Pay a visit to Namgyal monastery(also the residence of Dalai Lama), Shiva Cafe (near Bhagsu falls), St. John’s church, Tibetan food including Thukpa and Thenthuk, stuff yourself with bakery food
Free advice: Stay at Dharamkot away from the hustle-bustle of the city, a
2 3 day trip.
Height: 9,350 ft.
Time: 3.5- 5 Hrs
2. Nag Tibba
Some 60 km from Mussoorie, starts an 8kms less travelled-to trek from the village Pantwari. It is advisable to do this trek between October-March since it will be pretty tiring in the scorching sun the rest of the year. The route is not the easiest one and will require the help of a guide which has to be done at the village itself. Camping and food will be provided by them.
The trek is steep and will remain so for the first 5kms and there is no food/water facility anywhere until the campsite. Just when you think that the trek is taking a toll on you, you will be invited by a well tread-on trail in the dense forests and it is the best part. The hike to the Nag Tibba mandir campsite is going to take around 4-5 hours. I got the best view up there with the place filled with grazing cattle and the shepherds.
The trek to the summit can be taken the next morning.
** 3-day trip recommended.
Moral Duty: Camp at Nag Tibba mandir, to avoid an overhyped filthy waterfall(your call), Cheese Omelette at Lovely Omelette Centre, Char Dukan and church at Landour
Height: 9,914 ft.
Time: 4-5 hrs to Nag Tibba mandir
3. Prashar Lake
This is a hidden gem in Himachal Pradesh and words fall short to describe the surreal beauty of the Pagoda style temple at 9000 ft. and the lake with the floating island.
The trek starts from Baggi village which is around 1.5 hours from Mandi. The rocky terrain will form the first hour of the 7.5 km trek. It is better to ask locals at Baggi regarding the exact turn from this track which leads to the forest. I and my brother got lost in the middle and had to find our way back. Gradually the trail will become steep and you may not find a lot of people on the way. (We found none.)
In the end, the result of this tiresome trek will be more than satisfying. You will also enjoy the 180-degree view of the snow capped mountains.
Buses to Mandi from Delhi run every day and it is convenient to take the bus overnight and start the trek in the morning.
***To reach Baggi village may not be easy with very few buses on that route. Also, inquire before stepping on the bus since there are two villages with the same name.
Recommended: Stay at the artistic temple itself and live the divine and angelic night under a starry sky
Height: 8,957 ft
Time: 4-5 hrs
4. Kareri Lake
Still pristine and lesser known is this 12 km long trek that starts from Kareri village. As a beginner with little experience, if you are looking for a trek in the mountains near Delhi and need some fresh air along with some spectacular views, the trek to Kareri lake fits the bill perfectly.
The trek starts from Kareri village which is under 2 hours from Dharamshala.
How to reach: Dharamshala>> Ghera>> Kareri
Limited buses(2-3 in the whole day) run from Dharamshala to Ghera village(1-hour distance). Please inquire at the Dharamshala bus stand about the timings since it keeps changing. Shared jeeps ply from Ghera to Kareri(half an hour). Needless to say, take an overnight bus from Delhi to Dharamshala.
Height: 9,625 feet.
Time: 5-6 hours.
Read full blog: Solo trek to Kareri lake !
Kheeganga is a 16 km trek in the Parvati valley starting from Bashaini. It is believed that Lord Shiva meditated here and kheer (Indian dessert) used to flow from the Himalayas, which is now the Ganga river.
Don’t let the km deceive you. In fact, it is the easiest of the above. The trial is well laid with gradual ascent after the halfway mark where you would find a bridge connecting one mountain to the other. The flow of the river is majestic and the refreshing sound will accompany you till the top.
You will find a lot of small shops and cafes throughout the trail. The food is amazing and the view of the glorious mountain peaks at night will definitely reassure the presence of some divine force here. Add to that, natural hot water springs. A dip here and you would not want to be out for long.
Barshaini can be reached by bus or taxi which can be hired from Kasol. Buses to Kasol run every day from Delhi. Prefer an overnight one.
Must do: Bathe in the hot springs at Kheerganga and Manikaran, trek and stay at Chalal village, Israeli food, Hello to the Queen(dessert), You know it better
Height: 9,711 ft.
Time: 5-6 hrs
Read: All my treks here.
Do not ponder. Just leave.
Type in your queries regarding the treks or connect with me. I will be more than willing to help you out. Just start 🙂