Trio Valley – Mesmerizing Kinnaur, Serene Pin & Elusive Spiti Valley
Trio Valley trip would take you through the mystical tribal regions of Himachal covering the scenic landscape of the divine Kinnaur Valley, the serene Pin valley and the remote Spiti Valley. We would move up the Kinnaur Valley to the last village of India - picture-postcard Chitkul - situated strategically by the banks of the azure waters of the fast-flowing Baspa river, beyond which lay sheer wilderness towards the borders of Tibet. We would be blessed to get a holy darshan of the Kinnaur Kailash peak at Kalpa. Next on the list would be the discovery of the high altitude alpine lake Nako situated in the Nako village. We also witness with awe the over 600 -year old Mummy Lama – a well- preserved mummified remains of a holy Buddhist monk in Gue village, which is one of the most isolated village of Spiti, lying very close to the border of Tibet. Thereafter we would explore the Pin Valley and further ahead to one of the highest village of the world Kibber situated in the midst of cold desert of Spiti. The trip highlight would be our discovery of many an ancient revered Buddhist monasteries, including Tabo, Dhankar, Khungri, and Ki Monasteries.
Trio Valley trip would cover the following day-wise route:
Kalka - ShimlaOn reaching the Kalka station (in case you prefer to travel by train), our representative of Travel Your Dreams would warmly receive and escorted you to our waiting vehicle. Soon, we move out and skirt our way up-hill. We would soon pass by Solan and thereafter reach Shimla - the Queen of the Hills. En-route we feel the fresh mountain air brushing across our faces as we contemplate our journey to the mesmerizing Kinnaur Valley. Reaching Shimla we check into the resort and relax in the cool environment of Shimla. Late afternoon we take explore the Mall Road returning back to our resort for dinner.
Shimla - SarahanAfter an early sumptuous breakfast we check out of the resort. Soon, we pass by Kufri as we drive through some lush pine forest till we reach Narkanda, as we can see lines of snow-clad mountains. The gargling waters of the Beas river catch our eyes as we meander through the serpentine Himalayan road. Continuing ahead we stop by Rampur for lunch. We keep following the NH 22 till we reach Jeori where we could see Sarahan high up the mountains as if in a suspended state. Soon the snow-clad Shrikhand Peak comes to our view as we gaze it in awe. In less than an hour we reach Sarahan and after checking ourselves we pay a visit to the revered Bhimakali Temple, one of the 51 shaktipeeth as per Hindu mythology. Late afternoon we explore the cute Sarahan village and visit the all-wooden Bhushar Palace of the erstwhile Bhushar Kings.
Sarahan - SanglaAfter a good night sleep we wake up fresh and get ready for another exciting day ahead. Post breakfast we move down from Sarahan and move ahead in the NH 22. Soon the snow-clad mountains appear all in a line as we make our way ahead through this scenic landscape. We pass by Bhavanagar and thereafter at Tapri we stop by for a quick tasty lunch by a roadside dhaba. Thereafter we take the right diversion and enter the mesmerizing Kinnaur Valley. The landscape changes drastically from the barren dust filled road of Tapri to a quiet and serene environment. The Kinnar Kailash range soon appears up ahead of us and we are simply bowled. Gradually we reach Sangla and check into our resort/guest house. We are overwhelmed by the beauty of this valley - the turquoise waters of the fast flowing Baspa river meanders through Sangla and all around are snow-clad mountains amidst apple orchards.
Sangla – Chitkul - SanglaToday, we explore Sangla as we are dropped at the base of the nearby Kamru Village post our breakfast. We hike up-hill the semi-paved path, our destination - the Kamru Fort - adorned by the deity of Kamakshya Devi. Catching our breathe every now and then we finally reach the gates of this ancient holy shrine in about an hour as we are rewarded by her holy darshan and not to miss out some breathtaking beautiful views. Set within the backdrop of the towering Himalayan accompanied by some awesome views of the green valley below, we are simply speechless. After soaking quite a while in this serene paradise, we hike back and make our way ahead from Sangla. We move along the serpentine road and soon reach the last Indian Frontier village of Chitkul. The road ends here and beyond Chitkul is the remoteness of the Indo-Tibet border. Surrounded by lofty snow-clad mountains all around and in the backdrop of the azure waters of Baspa flowing swiftly, we can bet you have not seen more a picturesque place than Chitkul. We are awed by its raw beauty as we hike up-hill and soak in all the possible serenity sitting by the banks of the Baspa River. Late afternoon we move back to Sangla and as dusk sets in we light a camp fire and hear many a myths and legends of this region.
Sangla - KalpaWe start off early and move ahead towards Recong Peo, the district headquarters of Kinnaur district. By now our bodies are getting well acclimatized to the height as we snake up-hill. Soon we get the first grand view of the Kinner Kailash peak, the abode of Lord Shiva (there are 3 Kailash, the main Kailash in Tibet, chotta Kailash in Uttarakhand and this one in Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh). We are thoroughly amazed at its sheer size, which, seem to be within hand reach. We stop by at Peo for a while and soon follow the road going up-hill for the next 14 km to enter Kalpa. The drive through Pine and Deodar forested road is a sheer delight. The view of Kinner Kailash from Kalpa is sheer ecstasy. We are simply unable move our eyes anywhere, as if getting totally glued. We check into the resort and late afternoon take a hike exploring Kalpa. We can feel the icy wind blowing across our face till we return to the comfort of the resort indoors.
Kalpa – Nako – Gue Village - TaboWe reluctantly wake up early to watch the first rays of the sun kissing the Kailash Kinner peak and it is a sheer dazzling sight as the peak turns golden. We gaze and capture its moments in the camera as well in our inner minds. After breakfast we move out and en-route view the high altitude alpine lake Nako situated in the Nako village. Time as if shop still at this Himalayan laid back village as we explore its surrounding and is totally mesmerized to witness the view of this tranquil lake with its azure waters. Soaking ourselves thoroughly we move ahead and enter the delightful Spiti Valley. Our next destination is the Gui Village famous for it over 600 year old Mummy Lama – a well preserved mummified remains of a holy Buddhist monk. Gue, is one of the most isolated village of Spiti, lying very close to the border of Tibet. After that amazing discovery we make our way towards Tabo. The various rock formations and the barren mountains with various hues keep us thoroughly mesmerized till we reach Tabo late afternoon. After some rest we soon go exploring the Tabo Monastery. Situated at a height of 3280 meters, Tabo monastery, set amidst the village itself is one of the most famous Buddhist monasteries and is regarded as only next in importance to the Tholing Gompa of Tibet. Tabo is credited as the oldest continuously functioning Buddhist monastery in Indian Himalayas. According to an inscription on one of the walls, the monastery was founded in AD 996. Tabo Gompa is the the largest monastic complex in Spiti. Late evening we return back to our hotel/guest house and relax and unwind.
Tabo - Dhankar Monastery - Khungri Monastery - KazaToday we take a detour and go exploring the scenic Pin valley. But before we do that we first drive to the awesome Dhankar Monastery of Spiti Valley. Dhankar Gompa (also Drangkhar or Dhangkar Gompa; Brang-mkhar or Grang-mkhar) is a Buddhist temple situated approximately at an elevation of 3,894 metres (12,774 feet) in the Spiti Valley, The complex is built on a 1000-foot (300-metre) high spur overlooking the confluence of the Spiti and Pin Rivers. Undoubtedly, it is perhaps one of the world's most spectacular settings for any gompa. After a thorough exploration we make our way ahead to the Pin Valley of Spiti which is considered the most beautiful in the region and undoubtedly its beauty would keep us thoroughly spellbound. We drive through some spectacular landscapes and never seen before sceneries. The Pin Valley was declared a National Park in 1987. With its snow laden unexplored higher reaches and slopes, the Pin Valley National Park, forms a natural habitat for a number of endangered animals including the ever-illusive Snow Leopard and Siberian Ibex. Moving ahead we reach the Khungri Monastery. Khungri is of the Nyingma sect of Tibetan Buddhism. In fact Kungri is Spiti's second oldest monastery, built around 1330. The gompa consists of three detached rectangular blocks facing east. There are a number of silk paintings, large statues and over 300 volumes of sacred Tibetan text inside Kungri Gompa. After a thorough rendezvous of the Pin Valley we make our way to Kaza. After that amazing discovery we make our way towards Kaza. Situated at a height of 3800 meters, Kaza is the sub-divisional headquarters of the remote Spiti Valley of the Lahaul & Spiti district of Himachal.
Kaza – Ki Monastery – Kibber Village - KazaSet amidst a cold desert landscape Kaza has very close semblance to the neighbouring Tibet and Ladakh regions in terms of terrain, climate and the Buddhist culture. Kaza, situated along the Spiti River is the largest township and commercial center of the Spiti Valley. After breakfast we move out of Kaza and make our way towards Ki Monastery. This monastery can be seen from quite a distance as if suspended high on a cliff. Ki Gompa is also spelled as Ki, Kye or Kee is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery located at an altitude of 4,166 metres (13,668 ft). Ki Gompa is said to have been founded by Dromtön (Brom-ston, 1008-1064 CE), a pupil of the famous teacher, Atisha, in the 11th century. Ki monastery boast of a collection of ancient murals and books of high aesthetic value and it enshrines Buddha images and idols, in the Dhyana or meditation position. Thereafter, we move ahead and make our way to the Kibber village. Situated at a height of 4205 meters Kibber is one of the highest villages of the world. A walk within this high-altitude village with its colourful mud-plastered houses surely is an experience on its own. Thereafter we return back to Kaza and late afternoon visit many a curio shops to pick up souvenirs and other handicraft items to our loved one back home.
Kaza – NakoWe have a long day ahead as we start back early from Kaza and passing by the same scenic out-of-the-world landscape make our way back towards Nako which we reach late afternoon and simply laze around the sleepy Nako village.
Nako – Rampur - ShimlaIt is the last day of our mesmerizing Three Valleys trip as we move out of Nako and make our way return drive towards Shimla. We stop by at Rampur for lunch and late afternoon we reach Shimla. Those interested we would be happy to arrange a half day Shimla sightseeing trip the next day covering prominent historical landmarks of the bye-gone colonial era, when Shimla served as the summer capital of British India.
# Based on your desire the duration of this trip can be modified, extended to add more exotic locations.