Kheerganga is located amidst the astounding Parvati Valley in the Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh. Parvati Valley is considered the trekker’s paradise. Kheerganga is the most popular trek in Kasol 14 kilometres uphill from base camp. If you are a novice trekker, this is where you want to start.
Even for pros, the trek is an exhilarating experience, filled with tricky trails and enchanting views of the valley. Tosh & Kasol in Parvati Valley is famous for their surreal and multi-nationality party culture. The area abounds in travelling hippies and Israeli settlers.
- Location: Parvati Valley, Kullu District, Himachal Pradesh
- Altitude: Approximately 3000 metres
- Trek Time: 5 to 6 hours
- Difficulty Level: Easy to Moderate
Getting to Bhuntar:
You can easily reach Bhuntar via Delhi-Manali Highway. You can take a private AC bus or Volvo from Delhi to reach Bhuntar. However, all such buses will leave in the evening after 6 pm and will land in Bhuntar in the morning. You can also opt for HRTC buses that leave from Kashmere Gate. Alternatively, you can hire a private taxi from Delhi and reach Bhuntar.
Bhuntar to Barshaini:
Bhuntar is a small town from where you can take a bus to reach Barshaini. You can also take a cab to reach Barshaini, which comes after Kasol and Manikaran. This is where Parvati and Tosh rivers meet. Tosh is hardly 5 kilometres away from Barshaini. After your descent, you can walk to Tosh for your overnight stay.
There are two main trekking routes from Barshaini – Rudra Nag and Nakhtan. This is a two-day trek (including trek time and travel time) and it’s not advisable to finish the expedition in a day.
Things to Do Near Kheerganga
- Trekking: Once you venture on the trek, it is a must that you make a pit stop at the Nakthan Village. This pit stop is at the right distance making it a must to refuel your energy. Plus the cafes in this little village have some commendable food options.
- Bathe in the Spring: Enjoy the spectacular spring water; this water can be used for drinking as it is sheer magic. Understand the power of the freshwater as you take a sip of it.
- Camping: the Kheerganga trek experience is incomplete if the stay in the tents is not given a chance. Once you reach the top, there are a number of options for campsites. Stargazing is the highlight of the camping experience at Kheerganga.
- View the sunset: Sunsets are always a beautiful sight, but sunset views from Kheerganga are simply the best. The sky changes colours as the day comes to close and forms a kaleidoscope of bright lights like orange, red and purple to provide you with breath-taking views. Therefore, these sunsets should be witnessed with complete attention, to live them with awe that they deserve.
- Bathe in the Sulphur Spring: Take a bath in the sulphur spring: The hot water of the spring works as the perfect antidote to the chilly weather and the tiredness of the trek. The water in the spring is known for its medicinal qualities, which makes it a must. But it is the view of the snow-capped mountains as you bathe that makes this experience a must-try.
- Enjoy the beauteous nature: When it comes to the Kheerganga trek, the biggest asset that it possesses is the natural beauty of the place. Make sure that you becomes a part of this awe-inspiring setting easily rather than blaming the hike of the trek for the tiredness.
Main Attractions in and around Kheerganga
1. Sulphur Spring
One of the must-visit places in Kheerganga is the sulphur hot water spring. The water in this spring is known to have medicinal qualities to cure skin ailments.
2. Manikaran Gurdwara
Visit the Manikaran Gurudwara. This gurudwara is just about 6km from Kasol and is elegantly settled between the imposing hills and the free-flowing Beas River.
3 Shiva-Parvati Temple
The temple of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati is the biggest highlight of the region and has the credit of quite a tourist footfall solely to its name.
Located 5 kilometres away from Barshaini, Tosh is a pit stop for all backpackers exploring Kasol and Parvati valley, Tosh is famous for its EDM parties and thriving hippie culture. If you’re visiting in January or February, you can check out Jamdagni Rishi temple. Pink Floyd Cafe in Tosh is famous for its trippy ambience.
22 kilometres away from Kheerganga, Kasol is mainly known for its breathtaking views and several minor treks and rock climbing opportunities. You can visit the famous village of Malana or relax at Jim Morrison Cafe. Also, check out the pristine & pure Parvati River and Kasol bridge and Shiva Temple.
Places To Stay
You won’t find hotels here but there are lots of affordable shared/private cottages (hut-style) and rooms that you can rent without advance booking in Kheerganga. Trekkers can stay at Ashram built on the hilltop managed by monks and sadhus. Here you can rent a shared accommodation for Rs. 150 per night (including meals!).
Tosh, Barshaini and Kalga offer a good range of homestays starting from Rs. 200 to Rs. 500 per night. If you prefer more amenities, you can stay at Pink Floyd, The Hill Top Cafe, Blue Diamond Cafe or Snow View Cafe. Rooms here may start from Rs. 1500 onwards. Group trekking organizers to Kheerganga have their own staying arrangements, as part of the whole trek package. The entire package may start from Rs. 7000 and above.
Food in Kheerganga
You will find many open-air cafes in Kheerganga serving Chinese, German and Israeli cuisines. The cafes have pre-installed ‘tandoors’ too. Ice and Fire en route Kheerganga is a good place to pig out. Cocoon Cafe and Goldstar Cafe are good too. Even though, as believed by many, making Maggi on treks is a common practice, you will find that little mountain-top cafes are plenty. Homestays offer delicious meals too.
If you’ve been thinking of trekking in an exotic natural landscape, Kheerganga should be your first choice. It will be a trek to remember for the rest of your life. Feel free to leave comments below.