Hiking through the lofty mountains is a refreshing experience. It gets all the more exciting if you have the company of the mystical creations of the universe including some endangered species and fascinating flora and fauna. Let’s have a look at some of the wonderful hiking destinations:
- SINGALILA NATIONAL PARK, WEST BENGAL - Catch a glimpse of the Mount Everest on this beautiful trek located at the higher edges of the Himalayas of Darjeeling. One can easily arrive at the start of the trek at Moneybhajan by the ‘Darjeeling Himalayan Railway’. To go further from there, vintage Land Rover jeeps are provided to the travelers. The trek can be completed in three to four days. An additional option of a side tour to Phalut is also provided which gives the travelers panoramic views of Mount Everest and Mount Kanchenjunga. As you trek in this National Park, you will also traverse through forest areas full of ferns, oaks, bamboo, silver firs and flowering-plants like Orchids, Rhododendrons, Magnolias etc.
- KUGTI WILDLIFE SANCTUARY, HIMACHAL PRADESH - This sanctuary of Himachal Pradesh leads you through rough-terrains, steep slopes, glaciers and snow. The mountains on this trek are beautifully decorated with greenery and the slopes are ruled with various waterfalls making for a picturesque view on the way. The sanctuary is home to ‘High-Altitude Himalayan Fauna’ and the endangered goat ‘Himalayan Thar’. Kugti also nests the celebrated ‘Manimahesh Temple’ that is visited by pilgrims all around the year.
- VALLEY OF FLOWERS NATIONAL PARK AND NANDA DEVI, UTTARAKHAND - Rivers, streams and glaciers of Valley of Flowers and Nanda Devi have always lured the trekkers, poets, artists and naturalists. Valley of Flowers with its serene alpine meadows and gentler landscape wonderfully complements the out-of-the-way, rugged and high-mountain wilderness of Nanda Devi. Both the parks are rich with flora and fauna along with a significant population of the Himalayan Musk Deer and Snow Leopard. The place is also an amazing treat for the bird watchers.
- HEMIS HIGH ALTITUDE NATIONAL PARK, JAMMU AND KASHMIR - This Park derives its name from ‘Hemis Gompa’ which is a renowned Buddhist Monastery located near Leh. The convergence of Zanskar Rivers and Indus lines the park which is pleasurable treat to the visitor’s eyes. The park is considered to be most desirable for its Snow Leopard. It also houses Blue Sheep, Tibetan Wild Ass, Ladakhi Urial and Himalayan-Marmots. There can be chances of Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) on this trek, when not acclimatized properly. The sole place to reside during these treks is by pitching your own tents in campsites.