Hemkund Sahib and Valley of flowers Opening date 2019

Snow covered Ghangaria Village

This year there has been above normal snowfall in Himalayas. This affected the opening date of Hemkund Sahib and valley of flowers. In 2019 the Valley of flowers and Hemkund Sahib are opening on 1st June. Earlier Hemkund Sahib used to open on 25th May. But this time there is lot of snow on trek. Indian army clears the trek route and officially the opening date is fixed at 1st June.

The Hemkund Sahib is opening on 1st June in 2019.

Hemkund Sahib Trust manager Sh Sewa Singh.

Valley of flowers opening date 2021

So finally the Valley of flowers opening date 2021 is finalized, it is opening on 1st July 2021. The senior forest department officials went to the valley of flowers and returned back to Joshimath. Special thanks to the DFO (Divisional forest officer) Mr N. B. Sharma for providing us the pictures of the valley of flowers. This is the first time someone has gone inside the valley in 2021. Due to Covid 19 the char Dham, Hemkund Sahib and Valley of flowers was kept closed. But now the valley of flowers will open on 1st July 2021.

Valley of flowers is opening on 1st July 2021

DFO N.B.Sharma
DFO N. B. Sharma Ji with his team inside the valley of flowers in 2021.

Option 1

Two days for Valley of Flowers
  • Total no of days ex Haridwar : 7 Days
  • Departure Saturday and Sunday
  • Ends on Friday and Saturday

Option 2

Two Days for Valley of Flowers, with Auli and Gorson Top

  • Auli and Gorson Top for one day
  • Total no of days ex Haridwar : 8 Days
  • Departure every Saturday ends on Saturday

Blue Poppy holidays organize tours to the valley of flowers and have Blue Poppy Swiss cottage camps at Ghangaria and Blue Poppy Resorts in Auli. Both these properties will be available for the trip to valley of flowers. The camps will be erected soon.

Mr N.B Sharma told that there are around 45 different types of flowers available currently in the valley. This is really good news for nature lovers who wanted to visit the valley of flowers and were waiting since 2019.

Forest Officials inside the valley of flowers
Forest

Forest Officials inside the valley of flowers

Himalayan Black Bear

Himalayan Black Bear

Times of India paper showing the valley of flowers opening date 2021

Times of India paper showing the valley of flowers opening date 2021

News paper cutting for valley of flowers opening news 2021

Tourists need to bring Covid -19 report which should not be older than 72 hours, they can bring RTPCR/TRUNET/CBNAAT/RAT Covid negative report. The director of Valley of Flowers Amit Kanwar said, we expect the tourists to behave as per Covid 19 guidelines.

Is Valley of flowers open now ?

Yes valley of flowers is open from today 1st July, 2021

Can senior citizens visit the valley of flowers ?

Senior Citizens in Valley of flowers read this post.

What is the minimum age to visit valley of flowers ?

Minimum age to visit valley of flowers, Whether kids can be taken for Valley of flowers trek. Please read this post

What is Valley of flowers opening date 2021

1st July, 2021

Impact of flood in Uttarakhand, Rishiganga project.

Whether you can go to Uttarakhand after the flood on 7th Feb near Joshimath

In this article we will study the impact of flood in Uttarakhand. The crown of our country, the Himalayan ranges; world’s youngest mountain ranges on 7th February witnessed flash food due to landslide or avalanche or glacial lake outburst flood, something that is yet to ascertain about. This flood that took away lives and destroyed the Hydro projects by washing them away reminds us of the mistakes that we keep on making. The state of Uttarakhand is prone to such disasters and the Himalayas are as well prone to landslides and erosion because of high seismic activity in the region ever since many decades.

The state of Uttarakhand has a hilly and mountainous terrain. Almost the entire state has the same structure. Among the states like Jammu Kashmir and Arunachal Pradesh Uttarakhand as well has an extremely exceptional fragile landscape that is very much sustainable to natural disasters and natural calamities. The entire state is pre disposed to earth quakes, landslides, cloud bursts, flash floods and have witness it all at different intensities and time duration. Due to climatic changes the entire state is quite vulnerable to climate induced natural disasters which is nothing new across the globe currently.

Uttarakhand the Dev Bhumi

Uttarakhand also known as Dev Bhumi houses uncountable Hindu god and goddesses and is quite venerable to natural disasters but with the blessings of god it always bounces back to welcome its tourists from across the world every year. In the gone decade the number of tourists visiting Uttarakhand has only increased no matter what the state has witnessed and how many disasters may have occurred. The land of Dev Bhumi may be fragile but the spirit and togetherness of the residents of Uttarakhand is remarkable that helps in bouncing back the economy and bringing a boom.

Uttarakhand is not just to be tagged as the mythological hub of the country. It has always been known for its temples, pilgrimage, spiritualism, culture, yoga and what not. We together need to rise above that stature given to a state. There are many other geographical artifact as well of the state that need promotion.  From just being called the mythological hub the state has a lot to hold in its bag and flaunt. The state must be promoted for its rich cultural heritage, beauty of nature and much more hidden facts that beautify the state.

What happened on 7th February 2021 is something unpredictable and currently nothing is certain as what made this happen in winters, was it the melted glacier or un-seasonal snow melting or release of water trapped behind the glacier. A landslide or an avalanche occurred is a sure scenario and we all can thank god that this happened in winters with less water which caused limited damage focusing on the specific area and landscape. However we must take this as a stir warning of nature and try not to play with it rather learns from what went wrong.

We learn from our mistakes and so should we from this one. The beauty of Uttarakhand can never be washed away with these destructions but we must not forget to learn from mistakes and not repeat. This incident has occurred in the Chamoli district of Uttarakhand. The area is far from being connected to Auli, Joshimath or our beautiful Valley of flowers. All these areas are still very well connected leading an easy way till Rishikesh as well. Tourism has always been the biggest backbone of economy of Uttarakhand, 2020 along with it got many difficult times for the tourism industry. To bring a boom to the tourism and business of Uttarakhand we together have to initiate to build it up. With most of the famous tourist destinations still functional and easily accessible we must not be scared to reach out to them for our vacation plans.

Uttarakhand is a divine home for the important Hindu pilgrimage sites in our country.  From char dham to many small and big temples and sites Uttarakhand is a home for many. The Badrinath and Kedarnath pilgrimage remains unaffected with whatever has happened recently. Assuring the same the tourism minister of Uttarakhand ensured the tourists and pilgrims that damage caused is to limited restricted area which is far from these sites. The preparations of the Char-Dham Yatra have not been stopped and are just unaffected.

We need to understand that the beautiful cities of Uttrakhand in the Garhwal hills like Dehradun, Rishikesh and in Kumaon region like Nainital, Ranikhet and Almora are untouched by the incident causing no damage. All these places are away from the area that is the most affected one. These cities are the tourist attractions and no damage is a sigh of relief to the all kinds of business houses after the pandemic effect of 2020. We need to understand that the affected area is far away from most of these cities and town. The area affected is approximately 25-35 km ahead of Joshimath. This makes all the essential facilities in the prominent towns of Uttarakhand unaffected, open and completely functional. All the resorts of beautiful Auli are as well unaffected as they are far away from the region. They are fully functional and easily accessible with all activities and excursions.

Don’t change your plan if you wish to visit the Valley of flowers and our resort Blue Poppy in Auli as all the excursions and activities are on. No tourism has been affected and the calamity of nature is with the grace of god restricted to the specific area which remains away from all this.  While you are planning onto your visits in any of the areas around, just don’t stop yourself and keep up with your plan.

Impact of flood in Uttarakhand At Devprayag you can see the color of Alaknanda is still hazy and not green due to floods.
Impact of flood in Uttarakhand At Devprayag you can see the color of Alaknanda is still hazy and not green due to floods.

With the rise, promotion and publicity of tourism industry of Uttarakhand, it  will keep on booming no matter what the future holds. It is expected that by 2026 the number of tourists reaching the Dev Bhumi will be 67 million. Even though the environment is in stress due to grim situation however nothing can stop tourists from reaching the Dev Bhumi and spending their time in the serenity and beauty of the nature with the beautiful valleys, excursions and activities.

Blue poppy resorts Auli and Valley of flowers are open and has no impact of this flood.

Blue Poppy Resort Auli, Valley of Flowers, all excursions and treks remain functional for all the tourists without any risk and hamper with all precautions and safety measures in mind keeping the Pandemic and recent incident in mind. The damage caused to the mother earth of Uttarakhand due to mistakes caused by humans have had limited effect and is a learning tip for all of us to wake up to.  However, let us all together promote the tourism and beauty of Uttarakhand without forgetting that the boom of economy has always helped and in future will always help in revival and improvements.

How to reach Auli from Joshimath in winters when road is blocked by snow.

How to reach Auli from Joshimath

How to reach Auli from Joshimath : Joshimath to Auli is 13 km by road. Normally the road to Auli from Joshimath is open throughout the year except in Jan and Feb month when the snowfall may block the road to Auli from Joshimath.

What are the ways to reach Auli in winters.

  • Rope-way
  • Hire a local 4 x4 vehicle
  • Trek

Rope-way

It is most commonly used mean of transport from Auli to Joshimath in winters. You will enjoy the ride as well as reach the hotel in Auli.

There are  two type of people taking the rope-way to Auli.

  • People making day trip to Auli.
  • People staying overnight in a hotel in Auli.

There are lot of people who are making day trip to Auli from Joshimath. Getting a ticket of rope-way is very difficult for them. Rope-way takes approx 25-30 people in one ride, and take approx 30 minutes to reach Auli.

So in the morning everyone is going up for day trip and in the evening all these people are coming down. This means that in the evening people who want to go to Auli and stay there will easily get the ticket. In the same way on the date when they want to come down they will easily get slot to come down in the morning.

People coming to stay in Blue poppy resorts in Auli want to come by rope-way from Joshimath.

You need to get down at tower no 8 at Auli and take chair car to reach down to Lower tower point (LTP) at GMVN Auli. From here Blue poppy resorts is just 100 meter away. You can call the staff for your luggage.

Hire a local 4 x4 vehicle.

You should preferably try to reach Joshimath by 2 pm in winters so as to catch the rope-way. But if you miss the rope-way due to any reason. You may reach Auli by hiring a 4 by 4 vehicle. But that may cost you Rs. 1500 – Rs. 2500 or even sometime Rs. 3000 depending upon the timings and demand and supply.

If there is huge amount of snow on the road this service may not be available.

How to reach Auli from Joshimath : By hiring local 4x4 vehicle. The road condition in Feb 2020
How to reach Auli from Joshimath : By hiring local 4×4 vehicle. The road condition in Feb 2020

Trek to Auli from Joshimath.

You can drive up to the point which is motor able and start walking towards Auli. Normally last 4-5 km is snow covered. This is cheapest way to come to Auli from Joshimath. But carrying your luggage may be a problem.

Trekking between Auli and Joshimath is quite frequent in winters when the road is blocked
Trekking between Auli and Joshimath is quite frequent in winters when the road is blocked

Valley of flowers tour package of this season is already announced. Please check them too.

Where is Valley of flowers National Park Located

Valley of flowers

Valley of flowers is most scenic trek in Uttrakhand, people from all over the world come here to see the natural beauty. It’s a must do trek in life time. To know where is valley of flowers please read this post. Situated in high altitude Himalayan peaks, the valley of flowers is full of glaciers almost full year. The valley of flowers is located in Chamoli District of Garhwal region in Uttarakhand state. This is a world heritage site under nature category.

Where is valley of flowers Located?

The valley of flowers is a part of Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve. It is located near Badrinath, the holy dham among the char dham in the state of Uttarakahand. The Valley of flowers is located at a height of 3500 meter to 4500 meter. Huge variety of flowers are found in the valley during July and August.

The last motor able point is Pulna village from here you need to trek for 10 km to Ghangaria village. Here there are some basic accommodation available, you can see Blue Poppy Swiss cottage camps which is a premium property. The last point where you can take your vehicle Govindghat. Govindghat is 300 km from Haridwar.

If you are not coming from Delhi, you should book your flight to Dehradoon instead of Delhi. From Dehradoon Haridwar and Rishikesh both are very near. Spend a night here and full day road journey on National Highway 58 will take you to Govindghat. You can stay in Auli as well and next day from Auli or Govindghat you need to reach Pulna by road and then trek to Ghangaria. Ghangaria is at an altitude of 10200 feet. From Ghangaria the Valley of Flowers is only 4 km away. You need to start early and reach entry gate by 7 am to explore the Valley of Flowers fully.

Deeper parts of valley of flowers
Deeper parts of valley of flowers

How To Reach Valley Of Flowers From Auli?

Auli is known as the skiing destination of India. It is a known Himalayan ski resort dotted with apple orchards and pine trees. Valley of Flowers national park rests in the north of Auli.

Step 1 : Getting from Auli to Govindghat.

Auli to Valley of Flowers is not an entirely motor able route. The motorable journey starting from Auli comes to an end at Govindghat. It is 36 km long, and you can go via bus, hire a private taxi or take your vehicle. En route, you will cross holy place Joshimath. Moreover, the journey offers you various places to explore besides Joshimath such as Vishnuprayag. Even if you don’t stop to give time to any of these places, you can always enjoy the scenic beauty and lush green landscape from the windows.

Step 2 : Getting from Govindghat to Ghangaria

You can stay at Govindghat for a day or enjoy the place for a few hours before beginning your journey for the base camp of Valley of Flowers, Ghangaria.

Ghangaria is 14 km from the Govindghat. It stands at an altitude of 10200 ft (3049 meters) in northern Himalayan ranges. The first 4 km is motor-able till village Pulna; however, you are not allowed to take a private taxi or any of your vehicle. You can choose one of the Tata Sumos run by the locals. Another option is to trek by crossing the river Alaknanda over a bridge at Govindghat. The vehicle will take you to the Pulna village from where you will start your journey to the Ghangaria. There are four options to choose from when it comes to reaching Ghangaria from the village.

From Pulna to Ghangaria you can reach by following ways.

1. Trekking

You can continue your trek which you started from Govindghat, or you can begin the same after deboarding the Sumo. It is a 10 km track, and it will take around 5-6 hours to reach Ghangaria via this mode. If you are an adventure junkie, and enjoys your journey as much as the destination, trekking is indeed for you. The trail is moderate. White waterfalls against the mountain are a delight to watch and trekking along Pushpawati river is a whole new experience.

2. Using Pony / Horse

It is hard to imagine mountains without horses and mountain boys, and this brings me to the second option. These are mountain SUV’s You will find pack string of horses run by mountain boys. This option is a little faster from tracking (as you will reach early). One way cost for one person remains INR 800-INR 1000.

3. Palanquin

Four palanquin bearers carrying a child or an old person is a common view. You too can choose and let the porters carry you. This service costs INR 6000 to INR 8000, one person, one way.

4. Helicopter

This is, of course, the fastest option. Just a few minutes and the 10 kms will be covered. However, this advantage comes with many ifs and buts. Firstly, weather conditions have to be favorable for helicopters to operate. Secondly, there is no pre booking option, and the service is rendered on the first come first serve basis. And usually, there is too much crowd and waiting lines are quite long. If a helicopter is your plan A, then it should always be backed by another plan(s).

It is advisable to wait for helicopter till 10 am. If you don’t get it by then, quickly choose any of the above three options as after a point of time you will be left with no choice but have to cover the track on your feet.

Helicopter service ranges between INR 3000- INR 3500 between Govindghat and Ghangaria.

Step 3 : Ghangaria To Valley of Flowers

The ticket counter at Ghangaria for Valley of Flowers open at 7 in the morning. On the route of Ghangaria to Valley of Flowers, no vehicle or mules allowed. Therefore, you can either trek or take the service of palanquin and porters.

This trail is not moderate, and on the first day of 2-day Valley of Flower trip, 80% of the people manage to reach only the tip of Valley of Flower. Baman Daur, a big stone, situated at 3 km from the entrance gate of the Valley of Flower is actually the tip of the valley. In other words, the 86 square kms valley, starts from Baman Daur.

If you start your journey around 7 am, you can reach the gate by noon. It takes time as whatever you see on your way to Valley is worth clicking pictures. Moreover, the first day is kept to enjoy the trek.

There is no option for accommodation in Valley of Flowers. Therefore, the return journey to Ghangaria is suggested to resume by 1:30 pm.

Blue Poppy Holidays is few of the traveling agency that prepares two-day Valley of Flower itinerary.

The second day is reserved entirely for the valley. If you begin the trek around the same time as mentioned for the previous day, you will reach Baman Daur around 10 in the morning. On the second day, it will be only about reaching the destination as you must have rejoiced the trek on its first day.

The route from Baman Daur is neither too steep nor too low. It’s easy to cover 5 km from Baman stone is Pushpawati riverbed. And as you go deeper into the national park, there are many things to relish upon. You can bask in the glory of unending meadows laden with alpine flowers. The snow-capped Ratban Parvat and Nar Parvat separating Valley from Badrinath can be clearly seen from here. On the right side of the hills stands Birch forest. And at whichever corner you will set your eyes upon, you will realize that Valley is like a colorful carpet made from exotic flowers.

You can take our Valley of flowers tour packages 2019 for hassle free trip to valley of flowers.

How to cover Badrinath along with Valley of Flowers in July and August

At Badrinath Temple

Badrinath is a holy town in the state of Uttarakhand and got its name from the temple of Badrinath. It snuggles between mountain ranges, Nar and Narayan and forms part of the famous Char Dham pilgrimage. It is the holy shrine of Lord Vishnu and one of the most sacred destinations for Hindus. It is believed that Lord Vishnu endured penance precisely at the place where Badrinath temple is located. The ‘Charanpaduka’ is assumed to be footprints of Lord Vishnu, and rock formation at the temple contains ‘Sheshnaag’ imprints.

Devotees visit Badrinath not only to pay homage to the Lord Vishnu but also to enjoy the beautiful, picturesque sights. Situated at an altitude of 3300 meters on the banks of Alaknanda River, visitors come here to find spirituality. The traditional Garhwali wooden architecture is another thing on the list that leaves people mesmerized.  

Badrinath Temple

The best time to visit Badrinath is between May and June or September and October. However, if you plan to add Badrinath in your July-August itinerary of Valley of Flowers, there are certain things you need to keep in mind.

July-August is the best time to visit Valley of Flowers, but not really for Badrinath. It is time for heavy rainfall and landslides. Even if you are lucky enough to visit the holy shrine, stay there during these two months is not at all recommended. Evening and night time are more prone to the ground movement, and therefore, you have more chances of getting stuck at the place. The Lambagad village lying between Govindghat and Badrinath remains quite vulnerable. And anyway if you are visiting Badrinath only for the temple, then that can be done in a few hours. Staying there should be avoided especially when you have a train to board or a flight to catch the next day.

Land Slide pone area at Lambagad, on the way to Badrinath.
How to cover Badrinath along with Valley of Flowers in July and August

There is a village on the way to Badrinath from Govindghat , called Lambagad. It witnesses rain almost every evening during monsoon. This causes landslide in the area. The road is generally cleared next day by 10 am or even later by Border Road Organization.

Can I combine Kedarnath with Valley of flowers tour.

Kedarnath is winters

Why Valley Of Flowers And Kedarnath Can’t Be In The Same Itinerary?

Valley of Flowers is an Indian national park located in Chamoli district, Uttarakhand. It is also a UNESCO world heritage site which has a variety of flora and flourishes with endemic alpine flowers. Valley of Flowers is one of the most beautiful national park, situated at 3352 to 3658 meters above sea level. From the east, it is complemented by the untamed Nanda Devi National Park and Hemkund valley runs parallel in the south. However, these are not the only places that can form part of your Valley of Flowers itinerary. Badrinath and Kedarnath, two of the most important Hindu Pilgrimages, also aren’t very far from the valley of flowers.

Phlomis in Valley of flowers, peak flowering time is July and August.

In other words, the Valley of Flowers can be a multi-day trip from a few day trips. It entirely depends on the time when you are visiting the valley. For instance, Hemkund is accessible from May to September whereas, the best time to visit Valley of Flowers is July and August. In June, snow starts melting and all you will find there are seeds. Therefore, if you wish to take one tour for both, Hemkund and Valley of Flowers, July and August is the best time. However, both months are not compatible for Kedarnath.

Kedarnath has a cold climate for most part of the year. Best time to visit it is from May to June and September & October. July and August are the seasons of monsoon. It’s the time of rainfall, landslides, and hindrances. Trekking to Kedarnath is risky, if not impossible, during this time. Another mode to reach the pilgrimage is a helicopter. However, that service is not rendered during monsoon. On the other hand, if you choose to visit Kedarnath during its peak time, you will not be able to enjoy the Valley of Flowers.

Badrinath and Valley of Flowers can be kept in one basket. They both share common point from where journey should be started. The last motor-able point, Govindghat, is at equidistant from both the places. It is 20km away from Badrinath. Once you are back to Govindghat from Valley of Flowers, you can complete the Badrinath trip (to and from) in one day. Unlike Govindghat to Valley of Flowers route, the road to Badrinath is motor-able. You can take a bus or taxi as per your convenience.

Are you wondering, isn’t monsoon time unsuitable for Badrinath same as Kedarnath? Well, chances of heavy rain and landslide are equally there for Badrinath. However, this trip can be completed in a single day. You can leave early morning and come down before sunset. Like Kedarnath, you have to hardly walk.

All in all, Valley of Flowers and Badrinath come together in one package but not Kedarnath and the Valley of flowers !

Devkant Sangwan

How difficult is Valley of flowers trek : Difficulty level

Beautiful Glacier on the way to Valley of Flowers. This Glacier is 2 kilometers inside the Valley of Flowers.

This is very common question from people who wish to come to valley of flowers. Valley of flowers trek needs one track for four days ex Govindghat. It is not so difficult trek. The valley of flowers trek is well-defined and well paved. Although it is steep at many places, but except the day you go for trek to valley itself you can hire pony to reduce the difficulty level of the trek. Valley of flowers trek difficulty level is moderate to easy. Please read our Valley of Flowers trek itinerary page for detailed itinerary of valley of flowers trek.

Valley of flowers trek First day:

1. Govindghat to Ghangaria trek : Distance 10 km by trek. Helicopter and ponies are available to skip trekking.

Earlier the trek used to began from Govindghat. Govindghat is 25 kilometers before Badrinath. Govindghat is at the height of 5500 feet and Ghangaria is at the height of 10,200 feet. Now you can drive for four kilometers from Govindghat till village Pulna. That is the gain 3700 feet after trekking for 10 km. The trek used to be steep in its first 3 km (now made motor-able) and last 3 kilometers. Today’s trek may be avoided by taking pony or using helicopter. Helicopter service can be used only when weather is clear but the best time to visit Valley of flowers is the monsoon season. So you cannot rely on helicopter on this day. You may or may not get helicopter but you can easily get pony for Ghangaria. For elderly people even palanquins are available. But I have personally seen that many a times elderly people trek whereas some of the young people in young 30s take ponies.

2. Ghangaria to Valley of flowers: Distance : 6 km one side by trek

Ghangaria to valley of flowers is not so steep trek as once you reach to the official starting point of the valley of flowers it almost at the same level for the next 3-4 kilometers. The official starting point of the Valley is almost 3.5 km from Ghangaria and in my opinion out of this 50% is steep uphill and the remaining is not so steep. This day ponies are not available as they are not allowed to enter in the valley. But Palanquins and Doli’s are available. But you need to buy the entry tickets for the porters as well. Their help can be taken up to the first three kilometers and after that you can trek as it is almost flat. But I recommend you to trek only or you will miss out lot of flowers on the way while in to Doli or Palanquin.

Valley of flowers is almost flat after its official starting point.
Valley of flowers is almost flat after its official starting point.
Palanquins carrying a tourist to valley of flowers, they charge almost Rs. 6000-8000 rupees per day. The services are handy for people who are unable to trek but still want to go to valley of flowers
Palanquins carrying a tourist to valley of flowers, they charge almost Rs. 6000-8000 rupees per day. The services are handy for people who are unable to trek but still want to go to valley of flowers

3. Ghangaria to Hemkund Sahib: Distance 6.5 km one side, porters and ponies are available.

This is quite steep and I recommend to take a pony at least while going uphill. This saves time and energy both. If you have booked your trip with us we will be trekking beyond Hemkund Sahib where some of the rare flowers bloom. They are not even available in the Valley of flowers. While coming back you can walk down.

Ghangaria to Hemkund Sahib Trek is bit steep. Almost 1 km altitude is to be gained by trekking for about 6 kilometers.
Ghangaria to Hemkund Sahib Trek is bit steep. Almost 1 km altitude is to be gained by trekking for about 6 kilometers.

Ghangaria to Govindghat : Ponies and Helicopter available.

It is purely downhill as opposed to explained in Para 1 but if you want to save time you can use pony or Helicopter. Difficulty level of valley of flowers trek is moderate.