Table of contents:
- Relief and climate features
- Sacred places
- Monasteries of Indian Tibet
- Unique nature parks
- Ski resorts
- Tours or independent travel
- In order not to spoil the holiday
- Travel Reviews
The vast mountain system of the Himalayas stretches across five countries: China, Bhutan, Nepal, Pakistan and India. It is on Indian territory that the highest and most inaccessible peak in the world, Everest (Chomolungma), is located.
The Himalayas in India are considered a revered natural landmark: there are many Buddhist monasteries and shrines, schools of yoga and martial arts in the mountains. Rare animals live here and alpine meadows bloom.
Relief and climate features
The relief of the Himalayas, mountains in India, is hard to miss: sharp, glacier-covered peaks and a large angle on the slopes. The area of glaciers exceeds 33 thousand square meters. km, it is not for nothing that the name of the system is translated from Sanskrit as "abode of snows".
The climate is quite diverse, in the highlands in winter there are strong winds and frosts, the temperature can drop to -40 °C. In the foothills, the climate is much milder, there are 4 seasons characteristic of the Himalayas of India:
- from April to June, mountain meadows bloom and smell fragrant, the air is clean and cool;
- from July to the end of Augustthe rainy season continues, due to the abundance of moisture all the slopes are covered with rough vegetation, in the mornings there are often fogs;
- September to November is warm and comfortable, a good time for hiking and professional climbing;
- the weather is harsh in winter: frosts, strong winds, but there are often clear cloudless days.
When planning a trip to the north of India, to the Himalayas, you need to choose the right time so as not to be in a mountainous country under heavy monsoon rains.
For adherents of Buddhism and Hinduism, a trip to the Himalayas is akin to a trip to another world. In addition to the greatest holy peak, the abode of the gods of Kailash, there are 4 sacred places for Hindus:
- Kedarnath - the sacred temple of Shiva in the mountains;
- Yamunotra - the temple of the goddess of the sacred river Yamuna;
- Gangotri - the source of the Ganges River, revered as the beginning of life force;
- Badrinath is the place where Vedic scriptures were created.
Buddhists are attracted by a trip to the high mountain lakes of the kingdom of Ladakh, lost in the Himalayas of India. Ancient Buddhist monasteries, Tibetan villages, hospitable locals will remain in your memory for a long time. Some settlements are located at an altitude of 5000 meters, only snow-capped peaks rise above the squat houses.
Yoga fans prefer tours to Rishikesh, called the "Gateway to the Himalayas". From here begins the mountain road to the four shrines of Tibet. There are dozens of centers for the study and practice of yoga in this area,the sacred nature of this place is believed to help clear the mind and open the third eye.
On the border of Tibet and India in the Himalayas there is a region of Lahaul and Spiti, where the original Tibetan culture has been preserved, not changed by external interventions. Locals call this valley, located at an altitude of 4500 meters, "Precious Place": about 30 Buddhist monasteries, considered the oldest in the world, have been preserved here.
Monasteries of Indian Tibet
At an altitude of 1700 meters, the town of Dharamsala is located, which became a refuge for many Tibetans in the middle of the last century: the residence of the Dalai Lama was erected, schools and institutes were built. If you're lucky, you can visit the teachings of the Dalai Lama, which lasts several hours. The pass is ordered 4-5 days in advance, you can use an audio translator. Upon entering, you will be asked to leave your phone and photographic equipment in a special locker.
Reconstructed in 2003 in a new location, Norbulingka Monastery has become a museum of Tibet's former history and culture: a functioning temple, a large park and centers for teaching traditional crafts. In the temple on the upper floors there are chambers and an office of the head of Tibet, next to it there is a room in which ancient books and scrolls saved from destroyed monasteries are kept.
Unique nature parks
At an altitude of 3500 meters above sea level, at the foot of the mountain of the same name, there is a closed biosphere reserve Nanda Devi. From almost all sides, the territory is surrounded by high snow-coveredmountains, and in the west the park ends with a deep gorge and a stormy mountain river flowing along its bottom.
Under the protection of the protected status, more than 80 species of endangered animals live here: the Himalayan black bear, the blue sheep, the Himalayan musk deer, and many rare species of birds.
The Skeleton Lake (Roopkund) is a strange attraction in the park. During the first research expedition in 1939, many skeletons of people and animals were found on the shore. Many versions were put forward, but the cause of this terrible phenomenon was not found.
To visit the nature reserve in the Himalayas in northern India, you need to get permission at least a day in advance, a maximum of 5 people and a maximum of four groups per week.
Valley of Flowers National Park in the Western Himalayas is not so closed to visitors, but large groups of tourists are not welcome there. In addition to the interest of botanists in the unique vegetation of alpine meadows, local residents revere these places as sacred.
Despite the abundance of snow-covered slopes, there are few ski resorts in the Himalayas of India and the service differs from the usual European one. Although the amazing mountain scenery and fresh air quickly make up for minor inconveniences:
- Gulmarg is considered the most prestigious and popular resort: experts from the USA monitor the condition of the slopes, and the start begins at an altitude of 3980 meters. The ski platform is located at an altitude of 1330 meters, you can get to it from the village of the same name,reminiscent of Swiss settlements in the mountains.
- Experienced skiers are sure that the best slopes are in Auli: 10 km pass through centuries-old pine and spruce forests. The ski station is located at an altitude of 2500 meters, the season starts in November and ends in March.
- Fans of extreme descents love to come to Solang, a resort located 22 km from Manali. In addition to the trails for calm skiing, there is an excellent free-riding ground here: starting from the Rohtang La pass at an altitude of 3978 meters, and then untouched snow. The Black Ranz extreme route is popular, and the HeliSky base is open during the high season.
- The slopes of the oldest mountain resort in India, Kufri, have been known to skiers since the middle of the 19th century. Guests are attracted by the secluded location of the station, trails of different difficulty levels and the proximity of the Himalayan Nature Park.
When the snow melts, life in the resorts does not stop, in the Himalayas of India there are many beautiful trekking routes, lost mountain lakes and fast rivers for rafting lovers.
Tours or independent travel
Travel agencies offer a huge selection of different thematic tours of the Himalayas in India: for yoga, meditation, Ayurveda and sightseeing. You can choose a group or individual tour, usually guides meet guests at the Delhi airport, and from there the road begins to the foot of the mountain ranges.
For those who want to see the unique color of the country not from the bus window, try local cuisine and chat with the inhabitants of the mountainvillages, it is better to travel on your own. With this method, you can get a route through the most attractive cities and sights, and not always follow the chosen travel schedule.
In order not to spoil the holiday
When traveling alone, you need to remember the simple rules that are important for the local population:
- Don't take photos of girls and women without permission. Also, do not film the open entrance of the temple, it is considered disrespectful.
- In some temples, only residents of the country are allowed to enter, this is indicated by signs Only for Hindu.
- Before entering the temple, you need to take off your shoes, you should not have leather goods with you.
- On the streets of Indian cities in the Himalayas, tourists are often offered to try unfamiliar food or drinks. It's not worth the risk, the concept of hygiene here is rather vague and street tasting can harm your he alth.
- Don't taste food or touch things with your left hand, it is unclean for Hindus.
- Smoking or drinking alcohol in public places can result in heavy fines.
Attention to the customs of the country and courtesy will make a trip to the villages and cities of the Himalayas bright and unforgettable.
It is simply impossible to visit the amazing mountainous region, get acquainted with the customs of friendly Tibetans and not share with friends the impressions and photos of the Himalayas of India. Here you can feel unity with nature, forget about the hustle and bustle of everyday life and, having left, dream of seeing mountaintops again.
Many people note in the reviews the beauty and diversity of nature, the majestic Himalayan peaks, the old cities of India, like legends and living myths, filling and capturing your heart forever.
The Himalayas in India is an incredible place! Everyone who has been here writes about it.