Top 5 spiritual treks in India
Have you been looking for a mix of adventure, trekking, nature, and a spiritual retreat? If so, there can be no better region than the mystical Indian Himalayas.
The Himalayan mountain range is a mystery in itself and attracts travelers with its breathtaking views, glaciers, river valleys, and of course snow-capped mountains. The beauty of the Himalayas not only compels adventure lovers to visit but also those looking for self-discovery or a spiritual retreat amid a peaceful environment. From Hindu temples to Buddhist monasteries, from Gurudwaras to holy lakes, long spiritual Himalayan treks in India will not only allow you to attain blessings but also allow you to witness different cultures.
1. Shrikhand Mahadev Kailash Trek:
One of the most challenging pilgrimage treks in India, the Shrikhand Mahadev Kailash Trek starts from the base point of Jaon or Sinhgad village in Kullu in Himachal Pradesh to the peak of Shrikhand Mahadev, where there is a Shivling about 75 feet tall made of stone. The trek measures about 32 km one way and takes you through a rocky moraine path, dense forests, and rugged glaciers. The Shivling, when viewed from the front, has cracks in it and hence is named Shri ‘KHAND’ Mahadev. Being here is a magical moment as the whole experience brings excitement along with divine waves of emotions amidst the heart-stopping views all around.
Altitude: approx. 5,715 m.
Best Time for Shrikhand Mahadev Kailash Trek: Usually the best time for the pilgrimage is between July and August.
2. Ganga Trek Source:
One of the best spiritual trek destinations in Garhwal Himalayas, the Source of Ganges Trek is sure to make your spiritual journey sublime. Gaumukh (Mouth of the Cow) on the Gangotri glacier is the source from where the holy river Ganga originates and thus the trek takes the travelers to the divine place by covering the trekking route from Gangotri which can be reached from Uttarkashi. As you travel, the trek takes you into a world of holiness, wilderness, and immense natural beauty.
Best Time for Ganga Source Trek: The months between May and mid-October are the best time to plan a Ganga Source trekking holiday as it is also the season of Char Dham Yatra.
If you love trekking then you can also do Kedarkantha trek in Uttrakhand.
3. Kinner Kailash Trek:
The trek to Kinner Kailash starts from Tangling, a village situated on the left bank of the river Sutlej. From there, the trek continues along the iron path to a small stream about 3 km ahead. After two halts, one at Bara Pathar (Big Stone or Rock) and the other at Bara Ped (Big Tree), the trek continues further and after crossing the bugyals (meadows), your day will end at the Aashiqui park from there the Kinner Kailash is nearly 8-10 km away. Ashiqui Park has an amazing night view and the lights of Kalpa and Reckong Peo are visible.
Altitude: approx. 6500 m.
Best time for Kinner Kailash Trek: The months between May and June and post-monsoon in October are the best time to witness the beauty of Kinner Kailash.
4. Ladakh Monastery Trek:
The 13-day Ladakh Monastery Trek starts from Leh and includes some of the most beautiful monasteries like Shey and Thiksey Monastery, Lamayuru Monastery, Prinkiti La, Hinju, Konzke La, Sumda Chenmo, Sumda Choon, Lanak and Alchi Monastery. The beauty of monasteries in Ladakh is that most of them are built on lonely rocks or rocky mountain faces that make the region different from any other place.
Altitude: approx. 3,600 m. – 4,950 m.
Best Time to Trek Ladakh Monastery: The summer months between April and June are best for spiritual trekking in Ladakh.
5. Amarnath Trek:
Another legendary trek in the Himalayas, the Amarnath Cave Trek in Kashmir allows devotees to visit Lord Shiva’s favorite cave. The trek covers rugged and challenging mountain terrains to get the most powerful look at the ice stalagmite formed inside the Amarnath cave.
Legends say that Lord Shiva chose this particular cave to impart the secret of life and death to Goddess Parvati on his way to the cave. Although difficult to reach, the secret was sacred, so at Pahalgam, he had to abandon his Nandi ride, at Chandanwari he left the moon on top of his head, at Sheshnag Lake he left a snake around his neck, and at Panchtarni he left the five essential elements of life that he carried, and even left his son – Lord Ganesha on top of Mahaguna. And since then devotees started following the same tourist route for Amarnath Yatra.
Altitude: approx. 3,888 m.
Grade: Easy moderate
Best Time for Amarnath Trek: The only time of the year when the Amarnath cave is accessible is between the Shravan (Hindu calendar) months of July and August.