For trekking enthusiasts, the scenic mountains of India offer plenty of gorgeous routes. The mammoth Himalayan peaks, the sandy deserts, the wide stretches of meadows, all make for an unforgettable trekking experience. And the feeling of reaching the end of your trek – nothing beats that euphoric moment of accomplishment!
As the trek culminates, you are left gaping with wonder at the grandeur of nature. These stunning trekking trails are not only popular for their landscape, but also make for an exhilarating physical journey.
Zanskar Frozen River Trek, Ladakh
At an altitude of 3,850 meters, the ice-covered Himalayan river makes for one of the most challenging expeditions to embark on. Often thought of as the ultimate treat for adventure junkies, this trek lasts for a good 13-15 days. It is also called the Chadar (blanket) trek because of the sheet of ice that spreads across the river. The trek takes you to ancient Buddhist monasteries and far-flung villages curled up in the Trans Zanskar valley.
It is not your regular mountain trek, taking you across more than a 100 km of icy river. It can prove to be quite a challenge, especially for someone unfamiliar with the idea of climbing over icy rocks and sleeping in caves at night! But the view makes all the effort worth it.
StartUrTrip Tip: Temperatures drop to as low as -30 degrees. Make sure you pack to brave the biting cold!
Markha Valley Trek, Ladakh
The Markha Valley trek is a must if you hold an interest in the Tibetan culture. The colorful flags adorning barren grounds that look up to blue skies is nothing short of a treat to the senses.
At an altitude of 5,200 meters, this 12-14 day, 80 km trek will take you along the Markha River through Little Tibet. It traverses the Markha Valley, passing old villages and monasteries along the way. You can easily find accommodations in parachute tents at these villages. Not just this, you will also get spellbinding views of the Ladakh and Zanskar ranges, Stok Kangri (20,086 ft.), and Kang Yatze (21,000 ft.).
StartUrTrip Tip: Feel like you’re losing your way along the trek? You’ll come across many goat herders who will be happy to give you a nudge in the right direction.
Rajmachi Trek, Maharashtra
Over the years, Rajmachi fort, in Lonavala, has become a popular tourist destination. Its lush hills are a sight to behold for the trekkers, with an abundance of greenery and pretty waterfalls seen through the misty, low-hanging clouds. You can either complete a 15 km trek from Lonavala or a slightly bumpier one from the Kondivade village, which is also famous for its caves.
StartUrTrip Tip: Stop by the Rajmachi village where you can get a delicious home-cooked meal at any of the local houses.
Valley of Flowers Trek, Uttarakhand
Touted as one of the most beautiful trekking spots in India, Valley of Flowers holds true to its name – it is a vast expanse of wild flowers in stunning hues. The valley stretches over 10 km and is at an altitude of 3,600 meters. It is also home to a diverse fauna, with endangered animals such as the blue sheep and mountain leopard. This is a moderately challenging trek that can take up to a week.
StartUrTrip Tip: On your way to the Valley, make a stop at the Shri Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara.
Araku Valley Trek, Andhra Pradesh
This hill station is more of a tourist destination and is perfect for those new to trekking. Araku Valley in the lovely foothills of Vizag is a must for those with an interest in ancient caves, lovely waterfalls, and tribal museums. It is popular for its greenery and exquisite landscapes.
StartUrTrip Tip: Head to the nearby Borra Caves and check out some amazing stalactite and stalagmite formations.