If you want to witness something that surpasses even the standards of natural beauty, then an adventurous expedition to Har Ki Doon Valley will do the trick for you.
A cradled-shaped hanging valley surrounded by the tall and mighty Himalayan peaks, Har Ki Doon is connected to Baspa Valley via Borasu Pass.
This spectacular travel getaway is situated at an elevation of about 3566m above sea level and is set right in the middle of Govind Ballabh Pant National Park, Uttarakhand. Its untouched beauty is what makes the valley a topic of great curiosity among the tourists, as well as a phenomenal trekking excursion for all the adventure lovers out there.
Usually, people can be seen traveling here all year round. However, the best time to visit here would be the autumn and winter seasons.
History of Har Ki Dun
Historically, it is believed that King Yudhisthir was sent to the abode of heaven along with a dog from one of the peaks here. It is also believed that people who used to live here thousands of years ago were under the reign of Kauravas as well as Pandavas.
Har Ki Dun Trek
One reason why most people dare to visit this beautiful and adventurous place is trekking. Har Ki Dun Trek takes the tourists from the most isolated villages and introduces them to some of the most spectacular views of nature’s ethereal beauty.
One thing to note down here is that from December to March, this valley remains covered with snow thus, it won’t be a good time to visit here particularly for trekking.
Har Ki Dun Trek Itinerary
Day 1. Arrive at Dehradun and from there drive to Sankri village. It may take you about 7-10 hours depending on various external factors like the climatic conditions of this destination.
Day 2. From Sankri visit Taluka-Seema/Osla. The path of Taluka will take you via a forest. After reaching Seema you will need to trek for about 14 km to Osla.
Day 3. From Osla trek 12 km to reach Har Ki Dun. As you reach Kalkati Dhar, you will observe that the path has become a bit less demanding physically. The valley of Har Ki Dun is located at the foot of Hata Peak and a peaceful ever-flowing stream makes it a heavenly experience.
Day 4. From Har Ki Dun travel to Jaundhar Glacier/Maninda Tal and from there back to Har Ki Doon.
Day 5. On day five, travel back from Har Ki Dun to Osla/Seema village. For this, you will need to trek for about 12 km again. To know the local culture, indulge in a conversation with some villagers or maybe eat at a local shop/restaurant if possible.
Day 6. From the village, travel back to Taluka/Sankri village.
Day 7. On day seven, you can take a bus/cab to reach Dehradun and from there take a train, bus or a flight to reach your destination.
Major Attractions in and Around Har Ki Doon
Most of the tourists visit Har Ki Doon for having a taste of adventure by trekking in the unforgiving topography of this region. And in the end, it is definitely worth the risk, as you get to witness the snow-clad mountains, forests, and cascading waterfalls here.
Now, this is one of the most amazing life experiences you could have right in the lap of nature. That feeling of setting up tents with your pals under the crisp night sky makes for unforgettable memories of a lifetime.
3. Village Tourism
While you are on your way to this enchanting tourist destination in Uttarakhand, you get to come across several villages, hamlets inhabited by local villagers. All of this not just introduces you to a minimal way of living but also helps you know their customs and traditions, leaving an indelible impression on your soul.
4. Bird Watching and Photography
Seeing the diversity of flora and fauna here won’t let you resist capturing those moments of nature’s bliss through the lens of your camera. And when you get tired of taking snaps, you can always find a good spot and just sit and watch the birds cooing.
How to Reach Har Ki Dun
For traveling here, you will first need to visit Dehradun which is located at an approximate distance of 244, 1,565, 1,480, 2,213 km from metropolitan cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru respectively. Check out the following details on how you can reach here.
Jolly Grant Airport aka Dehradun Airport (DED) is the nearest airport. It is suggested to take connecting flights via Delhi and Chandigarh to reach here. From the airport, you would need to get some means of public transport to first reach your stay and from there drive to Sankari village, where the adventure begins.
You will need to deboard at the Dehradun Railway Station (DDN) and from there, take some means of transportation to reach Sankri Village. Owned by Indian Railways, the station is situated on the Northern Line of the Northern Railway Network.
The roadways connecting Dehradun to other cities are well-maintained, thus, you won’t find any kind of major issue to reach here by road. However, it is important to note that if you are self-driving, then some prior experience of driving in mountainous regions would definitely be a plus.
Apart from self-driving, you can also choose to book state-run or private buses from nearby places easily like Delhi, Amritsar, Chandigarh or if you want to travel in a more structured way then, you should book a taxi. You will need to travel to Sankri village to kickstart your journey towards Har ki Doon.
From Amritsar - 370-400 km via Grand Trunk Road or NH7