Treks not only provide a break from the hustle and bustle of city life but are a great way to unwind, relax and witness some picturesque beauty. If you enjoy being in nature, amidst oak and pine trees, treks are the best way to do so. As intimidating as they sound, there are many treks for beginners who have no experience of trekking. Beginner treks are a great way to discover whether this is something you like and also be in touch with the natural world.
1. Nag Tibba Trek, UttarakhandNag Tibba is one of the easiest treks out there. This is the first choice of many beginner trekkers as it is quite short as well. You can do this trek over the weekend, on a short break from your work life. The Nag Tibba summit is at the height of 9,915 feet, and there are three ways to reach this summit. The route that you will take depends on the company through which you have registered to go on this trek. The trek begins from the village of Panthwari which is located at a distance of 85 km from the city of Dehradun. The trek takes you through the forested areas and en route, you will get to witness the Bandarpoonch peak, Gangotri group of peaks and also a breathtaking panoramic view of the Doon city.
Best time to visit - October to April
Time period - 2 days
2. Dodital Trek, UttarakhandNamed after the Himalayan trout Dodi, the Dodital Trek is one of the most beautiful treks in the state of Uttarakhand. It is situated at the height of 9,921 feet and is a must do the trek for nature enthusiasts. The trek begins from the Sangam Chati village and goes through pine, oak, rhododendron trees, beautiful trails and the Dodital Lake and Dwari Pass top. This trek can be pursued any time of the year, but during winters you will find the lake frozen, which is also a sight worth seeing. Enroute, you will get a picturesque view of the Dhauladhar range and come across a varied landscape and a variety of flora and fauna like Brown Fronted Woodpecker, Himalayan Babbler, Red-Billed Blue Magpie, etc. This trek is a wonderful way to be introduced to trekking.
Best time to visit - Pre and Post Monsoon
Time Period - 5 days
3. Triund Trek, Himachal PradeshTriund Trek is another popular trek among beginner trekkers. It is an easy trek, situated at the height of 9,760 feet which can be completed in a day or two. It is at a distance of 18 km from Dharamshala and begins from Bhagsu or Dharamkot. You will get to go through forest trails, rhododendron and oak trees and witness enthralling views of the Kangra Valley and Dhauladhar Range from the Triund Peak. The view of the clear night sky with twinkling stars is reason enough to go on this trek.
Best time to visit - March to May
Time Period - 2 days
4. Valley of Flowers, UttarakhandValley of Flowers, as the name suggests is a trek that ends at a valley of wildflowers in full bloom spread across an area of 87.50 square km. This trek is considered a beautiful trek and ideal for beginners as well as photography enthusiasts. The trek was discovered by the mountaineer Frank Smith in 1931 and has been recognised as a UNESCO world heritage site. The valley is situated at the height of 3,658 metres in Bhyundar Valley in Chamoli district. The trek begins at Govind Ghat and the climb till the valley is quite easy. On this trek, you will get to see a variety of flora and fauna like Musk deer, Himalayan Black Bear, and various birds and butterflies. The end view of the beautiful wildflowers in full bloom and the sweet scent of nature will be a reward for your hard work.
Best time to visit - June end to September
Time period - 4 to 5 days
5. Hampta Pass, Himachal PradeshHampta Pass is a popular trek that begins from Jobra near Manali. The trek takes you through the beautiful lush green Kullu valley and offers you a panoramic view of the deserts of Lahaul.
Hampta Pass is situated at the height of 14,035 feet and the climb till here is a little steep. The trek takes you through different terrains, and one gets to see the majestic Peak 5260. Each campsite on this trek is equally beautiful either set up on the edge of the forest in Jabru or the wildflower meadows of Jwara.
Best time to visit - May- June, August-October
Time period - 5 to 6 days
6. Har Ki Dun, UttarakhandHar Ki Dun is a wonderful trek for beginners and has also been called the stairway to heaven. The Har Ki Dun peak is situated at the height of 11,768 feet and offers breathtaking views of Swargarohini group of peaks, Bandarpoonch and Black peak.
The trek begins from the village of Sankri and goes through the Govind National Park. It runs along the Supin river and en route, you will come across some ancient villages, believed to be around 3000 years old. The Har ki Dun valley is steeped in mythology as it is believed that the Pandavas took this route when they ascended to heaven and had thus been nicknamed the 'Valley of Gods'. On this trek, you will get to walk through coniferous and deciduous trees and might also come across wild animals like musk deer, golden eagles, etc.
Best time to visit - April to June and September to December
Time period - 7 days
7. Kedarkantha Trek, UttarakhandKedarkantha trek is great winter trek that takes you to the snow-covered peak of Kedarkantha, situated at a height of 12,500 feet. The trek starts at the Gaichawan Gaon which is approximately 180 km away from the city of Dehradun.
The entire trek remains snow-covered from December till April and becomes even more beautiful. The trek takes you through pine trees with snow clad wide clearings in between. From the peak, you can see the Dhauladhar range, Chasil Pass, Rupin valley and the Har ki Dun valley and along the way you also get a glimpse of the local way of life.
Best time to visit- December to April
Time period - 6 days
8. Deoriatal - Chandrashila Trek, UttarakhandDeoriatal is a beautiful trek that takes you through colourful rhododendrons, varied forest trails and patches of snow. The forest trails are the most interesting thing about this trek as they are either at times dense or moss covered trails of pine, oak and maple trees.
The trek begins at Sari which is an 8- hour drive away from Haridwar. It goes along the Deoriatal lake and finally brings you to the Chandrashila peak situated at the height of 12,083 feet. The Chandrashila peak offers a spectacular view of Garhwal and Kumaon region and peaks like Nanda Devi, Trishul, Gangotri ranges, etc. You can offer your prayers at the Tungnath temple and then sit on the peak and watch the sunrise. To witness the beautiful rhododendrons in full bloom, visit during the spring season.
Best time to visit- April to November
Time period - 5 days
9. Prashar Lake Trek, Himachal PradeshPrashar Lake trek is a very easy and a short trek. People usually do this trek during a short break or over the weekend. The trek takes you up to the Prashar Lake in the Kullu valley situated at the height of 8,900 feet. The lake is surrounded by the Dhauladhar Range, and one can see the Pir Panjal and Kinnaur mountain ranges from here.
Enroute, you will also get to witness the local way of life as the trek passes through villages. The trek begins at Kantlu and goes through rhododendrons, pine and oak trees, meadows and apple orchards. The lake is beautiful and is located close to a temple which has a unique architecture and is dedicated to the sage Prashar. This trek is perfect to go on with friends or family.
Best time to visit: Anytime except during monsoons
Time period: 2 days
10. Dayara Bugyal, UttrakhandDayara Bugyal trek is a beautiful trek that takes you to Dayara Bugyal, one of the highest meadows in Uttarakhand situated at the height of 11,100 feet. You will find here shepherds grazing their cattle and breathtaking view of the Gangotri peaks, Bandarpoonch, Kala Nag and Shrikhand Mahadev peaks.
The trek begins from Raithal and takes you through well-defined forest trails of rhododendron and oak trees. It starts snowing here in December, and one can find this snow even till mid-April. The meadow is truly a sight to sore eyes with rays of the sun falling on it and small colourful flowers spread across it. You can also go on this trek during winters when everything is covered in a blanket of snow.
Best time to visit: May to June, September to October
Time period: 6-7 days
Trekking is a wonderful way to relax and also is good for your health as you get to walk through long stretches of forests, drink water directly from the source and gorge on some healthy nutritious food. These beginner treks are a perfect way to familiarise yourself with the world of trekking and also gain some experience.