It is so heartening to see more and more Indians take to adventure, to trekking and camping, when they get a break or holidays these days. Till the 90s, youngsters in the Western countries were more prone to camping and trekking, but now with Indians having more access to spaces, money as well as information; with growing social media and travel becoming the new cool, and efficient trekking companies coming up, Indians too are trekking a lot these days.
Thought we would put up a list of 5 one day treks in India that all beginners must do at some point of time! Of course, there will be many more treks that can make it to the list, but as of now we are selecting five that we love!
1) Dzukou Valley Trek (Nagaland)
You look at the pictures of Dzukou Valley and you shall know why you must go there! Simply put, it’s one of the most different looking landscapes in the country.
One summer night in 2018, I was browsing for places to go, and as I went from one website to another and totally lost track of time and location, I stumbled upon this website that spoke about the Dzukou Valley trek.
It spoke of a gorgeous valley, lack of any commercial activity atop the mountain, a wood cabin that had almost no living facilities, leeches enroute to the top. And I was sold! The adventurer in me loves the unknown, and we trekked to this beautiful valley first in May 2018.
From Kohima, you can hire a cab to the base of the mountain. From there, its approximately a 2 – 3 hour trek up the mountain (depending on your speed). The first half is a steep climb up (only walk, no ropes or equipment needed), through trees and cut mud paths in the cliff. An hour later, you will be at the top, in a small clearing. One side opens up to a huge precipice and you shall see clouds looming out, and moving in and out of the cliffs, giving the whole place look like a Lord of the Rings Setting. On the other side of the clearing, is a small narrow path. The moment you take the path and walk a few metres, the landscape changes 180 degrees. Its as if you took five steps, and came into a totally new world. Flat meadows run along side you for the next hour. So does a gurgling stream that you can’t really spot from your path. Keep walking and you will eventually see the outline of two wood cabins. And when you reach there, the most amazing views greet you.
Do visit Dzukou Valley some day people. You will thank me. You can check out our upcoming Dzukou Valley trek details here.
Best time to go to Dzukou: May to Mid June (then it starts raining a lot), and September and early October. During these times, its at the greenest.
Tip: Do not go under prepared. The facilities are very basic in the cabin. Either carry your own tent, sleeping bag and snacks. Or go with a trek agency.
Tip two: Stay overnight. You will see a million stars at night. My friend saw her first shooting star there. You will also see a gorgeous sunrise if you wake up in time! 😉
2) Valley of Flowers Trek (Uttarakhand)
I am sure most of you would have heard of this one! The best time to do this trek is mid July to mid August, when the flowers bloom the most. But its also the time for the monsoons in Uttarakhand and landslides. The later you go in August, the more rains you may encounter.
If you haven’t been to Valley of Flowers and visualize it in your head, you probably imagine a large meadow teeming with the most gorgeous flowers, somewhat like the Mughal Gardens in Kashmir, just that the former is natural. But that’s not the case. There are an astonishingly large species of flowers here so botanists and people who have a wide knowledge of flowers might love that. But the valley is so big, and so spread out, that you don’t see a continuous stream of flowers and those you see may seem normal to the layman.
The beauty of Valley of Flowers lies is in the route. Right from the base Ghangria, as you go up the mountain, you are next to this raging river that’s running amok over rocks, boulders and anything on its way. Its whiter than anything, and its beauty and power itself is enough to captivate your senses.
As you turn across mountain bends, you see stunningly beautiful expanses of the valley below and it’ll fill you with happiness.
Just a 2-3 hour trek, its quite easy. And a must. An added advantage is that the next day you can go for another day trek – to Hemkund Sahib. This one is slightly longer, you gain a lot more altitude as you ascend, but once you reach the Gurudwara Hemkund Sahib, its so peaceful up there, and there is a beautiful lake.
You can see our Valley of Flowers package here.
3) Bunbuni Trek (Kasol, Himachal)
All of you have heard about the Kheerganga trek near Kasol! Its of course nice, but very commercial, there are too many people on the mountain, enough for the Uttarakhand government to ban overnight camping there last year.
What most people don’t know about is that not far from there, at a slightly higher altitude are some gorgeous meadows. Pristine, green, untouched. And the Bunbuni trek takes you there.
This isn’t a day trek, its an overnight trek. And as compared to the other treks mentioned in this blog, its relatively more difficult. It will take fit trekker between 4-5 hours to go to the top, but if you are in a big group, it could take 6-7 hours with stoppages for photos, playing in streams etc.
The best part about this trek is that you will hardly see anyone else along this route. As you go up, there will be streams, a small waterfall, views of stunning mountains, sheeps and horses grazing without a care in the world!
Once you reach the top, you will have to camp overnight. Carry your own tent and sleeping bags. You can also join our June Bunbuni trek.
4) Krishna Valley Waterfalls Trek (Maharashtra)
This is a gorgeous waterfall in Maharashtra. And in the monsoons, it falls majestically over the Krishna Valley. Very few outsiders know how to go about this trek.
It takes about 2-3 hours to go from the bottom of the mountain to the top of the falls. For the first half of the journey, you dont see the waterfalls at all. But keep walking up the green mountain and after an hour or so, you will come across a wide clearing. From here, you get a stunning view of the waterfalls roaring and falling down the mountainside. Keep walking up through the muddy path.
When you are close to the top, there are a series of 200 odd steps cut into the rocks. If you go in the height on the monsoons, the rainwater roars down these steps making ascent risky but fun and adventurous. Go during the beginning of the monsoon season, when its not so risky.
Its a beautiful, beautiful waterfalls. You can go to its base, but you will love it for sure.
Best time to go: Just when the monsoons start, and after it ends.
Read about other fort treks in Maharashtra here!
5) Living Roots Bridges – Double Decker (Meghalaya)
Meghalaya is heaven for adventure lovers. It’s full of natural trails and streams and waterfalls, so there is a plethora of treks you can choose from. Well, what else must you expect from the wettest place in the world!
You can do the David Scott’s trail trek, go down to Weisawdong waterfalls, do the hike to Lyngshia falls, find your way to Krangsuri. If you are super adventurous, I have heard there is a route that goes to the base of Nohkalikai Falls too!
But here, we are going to speak about the famous Living Roots Bridges trek. The trek in itself is decent, but it deserves a mention simply because its an absolutely unique phenomenon that is present only in Meghalaya, nowhere else in the world.
The roots of trees have bent so much on both sides of a stream, that they are strongly entangled in each other forming a natural bridge. The roots are so strongly intertwined that they can hold upto fifty people at one time.
It’s called Double Decker because there are two sets of bridges been formed in the same place, one high up, one in a little lower.
The trek starts about 15 kms from Cherrapunjee. There are 3000 odd steps cut into the mountain. Some large, some small, some steep, making it a challenge. The forest envelopes the cliff and as you keep walking down, you will see small village homes. Hundreds of butterflies flutter all around. They say that the presence of a large number of butterflies in a place is a sign of a very flourishing eco system.
You cross two metal rope bridges high above the water, and the water below is a delicious unbelievable blue. It takes about 1.5 hours to reach the Living Roots.
Tip: While returning, the last 1500 – 1800 steps are cut together. Can be a little tiring to walk up, but well you dont have a choice 😉 You will sweat, you will feel tired, you will wish to stay back, but keep walking and you shall be up soon. There is a small shop at the top called “Four brothers, Three Sisters”. Treat yourself to some Maggi or Omlette and chai once you finish the trek!
Check out our Meghalaya packages and Living Roots trek here!
That’s it for now people! Hope you liked our collection!