How to reach Valley of Flowers and Hemkund Sahib.
Valley of Flowers is a remote place and one should know in detail about how to reach Valley of Flowers to plan a trip to this place.
The last rail head is Rishikesh but no express train goes to Rishikesh so the last rail head becomes Haridwar. One needs to start the road journey from Haridwar early in the morning so as to complete the total motor able part of the journey in a day. To reach Haridwar you can come by train, bus or air. Haridwar is connected to Delhi by road and train both. Nearest airport is Jollygrant at Dehradoon. The airport is nearly 45 km from Haridwar.
The common mistake people do is they book their flight tickets up to Delhi instead of Dehradoon and reaching from Delhi to Haridwar takes almost one day by road.
After reaching Haridwar one can travel by road to Govindghat. Govindghat is the starting point of the trek to The Valley of Flowers. On the way to Govindghat you can see some confluences of rivers. First will be Devprayag, it is the confluence of Alaknanda and Bhagirathi. After Devprayag you can see Rudraprayag, it is confluence of Alaknanda and Mandakini . At Vishnuprayag Alaknanda meets Dhauli River.
After staying at Govindghat for one night you will trek to Ghangaria. Ghangaria is at a 14km from Govindghat and the trek is quite steep and it takes almost the full day to reach Ghangaria. You need to stay at Ghangaria only as camping is not allowed inside the Valley of Flowers. Next day you can trek to Valley of Flowers from Ghangaria. The entry gate opens at 7.00 am and last entry is allowed till 2.00 pm. You need to get out of the Valley by 5.00 pm.
Important data that will help you in reaching Valley of Flowers.
Day 1 Haridwar to Govindghat – Distance travelled by road 300 km – time taken 10-12 hours.
Day 2 Govindghat to Ghangaria – Distance travelled by trek/ponies 14 km – time required 8-10 hours by trek 5-6 hours by ponies.
Day 3 Ghangaria to Valley of Flowers and back to Ghangaria – trek of 5-8 km one side inside to Valley of Flowers and back to Ghangaria. It will take one full day.
Day4 Ghangaria to Hemkund Sahib and back to Ghangaria – 6 km steep trek one side. You can use ponies at least while going uphill. It requires one full day.