A place of astounding beauty
Using superlatives to describe the Valley of Flowers seems totally justified. Abound with millions of flowers, numerous streams and verdant green landscape – the valley exudes unparalleled beauty.
During monsoons, the valley exhibits a whole spectrum of colors. In fact, the color of the valley changes, from lush green to different shades of pink, purple and yellow, every few steps, depending on the predominant flowers in bloom. GoMissing recommends the trek to Valley of Flowers to be on every travel enthusiast’s bucket list.
Trek in the Valley of flowers
The main entrance to the valley is about half-a-km from the Ghangaria village. Just as we got out of the village, we saw a beautiful waterfall on the Lakshman Ganga which originates at the Lakshman temple near the Hemkunt Sahib Gurudwara.
At the entrance, we were cautioned against heavy rainfall. “In case of heavy rains, simply take a U-turn and head out of the valley,” the officials told us. The idea is to get out of the valley before the water level in various streams rise up, because that can wash away small wooden planks, leaving you stuck on the wrong side.
On entering, we saw the Pushpawati River which runs along the valley, originating in the East Kamet glacier. The latter is part of the Rataban and Nilgiri ranges of Uttarakhand.
After crossing a few steep slopes on the hike we reached lovely wooden bridge and crossed the Pushpawati River. As we walked along, the clusters of flowers became thick. The GoMissing naturalist helped us identify different flowers. From geraniums to primroses to cinquefoils, the valley had it all. Hidden from the gaze of a casual trekker were stalks of Edelweiss, the unofficial national flower of Switzerland. The flower was growing on the side of a ledge which was hidden under other commonly found flowers.
We also spotted red berries growing on a bush. The naturalist explained the medicinal uses of the plant, and we were given the go-ahead to taste the berries. And they were delicious!
From that point, the deeper we went into the valley, the more beautiful it became. Treading rocky paths on gentle meadows, with flowers and drizzle all around – the experience was blissful. With glaciers turning into streams in the distance, the place looked surreal. We stopped to drink water from these streams; it was so pure that it tasted like the nectar of the Gods.
While walking in the meadows, we saw numerous streams splitting from- and joining one another, forming a beautiful delta. Crystal clear water, lush green mountain slopes and patches of flowerbeds against the backdrop of glacial peaks shrouded in the clouds – the experience is something which will remain etched in our memory for the rest of our lives.