In the domain of Nanda Devi
Best Season: mid-September - Oct
Train ride from Delhi to Kathgodam and Haridwar to Delhi by one of the fastest trains of India.
Excursion to Naina Peak - the highest peak in Nainital to see the first glimpse of Nanda Devi Peak in clear weather.
Walk through tea gardens in Kausani.
Trek in the Dev Bhoomi (Uttarakhand)
Excellent view of HImalayan Peaks like Mana (7272 m), Kamet (7756 m), Nanda Devi (7826 m), Hathi Parvat (6727 m), Dronagiri (7068 m), etc during the trek.
Summit of Pangar Chula Peak (4750 m) during trek.
Handshake view of Nanda Devi Peak from Rishikund in clear weather.
Drive pass through Dev Prayag, where the mighty confluence of Alaknanda and Bhagirathi rivers take place to form the mystic River Ganga.
Visit Ghats in Haridwar to witness many religious ceremonies of Hindu culture. Also, visit the local bazaar with it's quaint shops.
Cultural satiation in Haridwar and Rishikesh.
Optional tour to Agra to see Taj Mahal.
The land (Bhoomi) of Gods (Dev) Uttarakhand is an enticingly diverse state. The state is known not only for being religious and spiritual, it also boasts of the Himalayan peaks and forests. The snow – clad mountains lure travellers from all around the world to traverse its trails. It has one of India’s best trekking paths, Yoga centres, spiritual ashrams tucked into it. The Uttarakhand Himalaya shares its border with Nepal on the western side and with Tibet on the northern front. The state also shares a lot of similar culture with Nepal. The highest peak of this region, and the second highest of India is Nanda Devi (7826 m). Nanda Devi is the presiding Goddess of Uttarakhand and her folklores are repeated in every household. We follow the mystic Nanda Devi trail on our way. We have the view of Nanda Devi right from when we set our feet on the hills of Himalaya in Nainital.
Nanda Devi follows us like our shadows till the last day, when we leave the mountains in Joshimath. It is, therefore, this hand shake view of the photogenic Nanda Devi that makes it a must see from Rishikund. We are so close to this majestic mountain in Rishikund that you feel like touching this unsurpassed view! The entire trek is a food for your soul with plenty of view of high mountains of Garhwal.
Having satiated our lust for the mountains, we head towards the cultural trove on our way back and visit the spiritual centres of Rishikesh and Haridwar, both situated on the banks of holy river Ganga. Rishikesh and Haridwar are abuzz with religious activities, like in Varanasi. Well known for its various Yoga Ashrams, Rishikesh attracts tourists from world over to learn Yoga. We will visit one of them to get a deeper insight of this oriental health remedy. Haridwar offers you religious rituals in abundance in its bustling Ghats and narrow lanes. It is a chance to experience exotic India.
Day 1 - Departure
Depart from your home country.
Day 2 - Delhi
Arrive at Indira Gandhi International Airport, where you will be received by our representative with fresh marigold garlands, which is a traditional way of welcoming guests in India. We go for sightseeing of Old Delhi. We take a rickshaw ride in the crowded and narrow lanes of Chandni Chowk – the medieval style shopping bazaar. We also visit the largest Indian Mosque — Jama Masjid, which is also known as Friday Mosque. We also visit the massive sandstone structure – Red Fort, or Lal Qila as it is known. Overnight in hotel.
Day 3 - Delhi / Kathgodam / Nainital (2048 m)
In the morning, we transfer to New Delhi Railway Station for the train to Kathgodam (dep / arr 0600 / 1140). Upon arrival, we drive 30 km / 2 hours to Nainital – a popular hill station in the Kumaon hills. Nainital is also known as the Switzerland of India for its beauty. We have the afternoon free for relaxation. In the evening, we witness Arti (worship using butter oil lamps) in Naina Devi Temple located on the northern end of Naini Lake, from which comes the name of this town – Naini and Tal (lake). Overnight in hotel.
Day 4 - Nainital / Naina Peak (2615 m) / Nainital
In the morning, we make an excursion to Naina Peak (2615 M) for acclimatization – it is the highest hill top in Nainital. We trek through the forest of vibrant rhododendrons, soaring deodars and cypresses. From the top, we enjoy a splendid bird’s eye view of the town. We can also get a spectacular view of snow clad Himalayan peaks, including our first glimpse of Nanda Devi peak and the Terai regions (flat land) of Kumaon. Total hike of 4 – 5 hours. In the evening, we walk around the bazaar and later witness Arti (worship) in Naina Devi temple located on the western side of the lake. Overnight in hotel.
Day 5 - Nainital / Kaushani (1890 m)
In the morning, we drive 120 km / 4 hours to Kaushani – a picturesque hill station famous for its splendour and its spectacular wide panoramic view of Himalayan peaks like Trishul (7120 M), Nanda Devi (7828 m) and Pancha Chuli (6904 M). Upon arrival, we visit Gandhi Ashram where Mahatma Gandhi stayed for 2 weeks in 1929. Later, we walk through tea gardens sprawling over an area of 208 hectares. Overnight in hotel.
Day 6 - Kaushani / Joshimath (1850 m)
After breakfast, we drive 190 km / 7 hours to Joshimath, the last well known town before Tibet border. It has one of the four maths (shrines) founded in the 8th century by Adi Guru Shankaracharya, who walked all the way from Kerala to meditate here. Joshimath is also the home of the oldest tree in India, Kalpavriksha, which stands at Joshimath from the time of Adi Guru Shankaracharya and is believed to be 1200 years old. Upon arrival, if time permits, we visit Jyotirmath and Kalpavriksha. Overnight in simple hotel / guest house.
Day 7 - Joshimath / Auli (2450 m) / Gorson (2800 m)
In the morning, drive 13 km / 30 minutes to Auli, a well-known ski place of India surrounded by high peaks like Mana (7272 M), Kamet (7756 M) and the tallest of all — Nanda Devi (7826 m). From Auli, we begin our trek to Gorson. A gradually ascending trek through the forest of Deodar, Oak and Rhododendron for about 30 minutes. Thereafter, tree line ends and we trek through Bugyal (grassy meadow) till our camp side. Total trek of 2 hours. Enjoy good view of Himalayan peaks like Nanda Devi (7826 m), Hathi Parvat (6727 m) and Dronagiri (7068 m). Overnight in Tents with a superb view of Himalayan peaks in front of us.
Day 8 - Gorson / Kuari Pass (4150 m)
After breakfast, we begin our trek in the Bugyal for 1 hour. It is a gradually ascending trek. Thereafter, 1 hour trek on ridge, which slowly rises uphill followed by a levelled trek. Soon we trek through the forest of Deodar and Oak trees. Final push of 2 hours’ uphill trek till Gyalgarh below Kuari Pass where we camp for 2 nights. Total trek of 5 – 6 hours. Overnight in tents.
Day 9 - Kuari Pass / Pangar Chula (4750 m) / Kuari Pass
Early morning, we begin our uphill trek to Pangar Chula peak through the ridge for 2-3 hours. Thereafter, leveled trek goes through rocky terrain till Pangar Chula base for 2-3 hours. Finally, steep trek ascent till the summit for about 1 hour. A superb view from the top awaits us on the summit. Total trek of 7 – 8 hours. Overnight in tents.
Day 10 - Kuari Pass / Khuwala (2500 m)
After breakfast, we begin our downhill trek to Khuwala through Bugyal till Khulara for 2 hours. Further downhill trek through the forest of Oak trees till Guling Shepherd hut for 3 hours. Total trek of about 5 hours. Overnight in tents where you still have the magnificent view of some peaks like Haathi Ghora peaks etc.
Day 11 - Day 16 - Khuwala / Rishikund (4300 m) / Pipalkoti
We begin our 6 days' trek to Rishikund today for an excellent view of Nanda Devi and other high peaks of Garhwal. 5 nights in camp during the trek. At the end of our trek, we drive 3 hrs to Pipalkoti. Overnight in simple hotel / guesthouse.
Day 17 - Pipalkoti / Rishikesh
We drive 220 km / 8 hours to Rishikesh. Our drive passes through a few Prayags (confluences), each river joining the mighty Alaknanda, which we have been driving along. At Dev Prayag, the mightiest confluence, both Alaknanda and Bhagirathi Rivers merge to form the mystic River Ganga. Alaknanda originates from Alkapuri Glacier beyond Joshimath and Badrinath Temple. On our way, we will stop at Dev Prayag to see this great confluence. The long journey of Ganga River thus begins in these snowy mountains and travels 2525 km across India which ends in Calcutta by merging in the Bay of Bengal. In the evening, we witness Ganga Arti (worship) on the bank of Ganga in Rishikesh. It’s a soul southing experience. Walk up to your hotel witnessing various religious trinkets being sold to pilgrims. Overnight in hotel.
Day 18 - Rishikesh / Haridwar / Delhi
Rishikesh is a holy city rightly called a mini Varanasi. The city is abuzz with various Yoga Ashrams, temples, saints etc. We make a short sightseeing of Rishikesh crossing over Laxman Jhoola (bridge) to see the other side of this hustling-bustling town. Later, we drive 26 km to Haridwar and visit Har Ki Pauri. One gets dumb founded witnessing so many religious ceremonies of Hindu culture. We also walk around the narrow lanes of local bazaar where they sell different quaint religious articles. In Haridwar, we end our journey to the land of Uttarakhand, which is also called Tapo Bhumi (land of meditation) and board train to Delhi. (Dep / Arr 1815 / 2245) Upon arrival in Delhi transfer to hotel for overnight.
Day 19 - Delhi / Agra (Optional) / Departure
Day free in Delhi or Optional Day Excursion to Agra. Later, transfer to hotel for your journey back home.