Hiking is your easy getaway from the highly persistent noise and stress of your regular city life. It soothes your soul and satisfies your need for adventure at the same time. Hiking has gained immense popularity over the years and there are numerous hiking locations across the country. Several groups and clubs take it a notch higher by organizing professional hikes. Whether an organized group activity or an individualistic interest, hiking is one of the most encouraging sports in the society today for all the right reasons. Take a much-needed break from your daily hustle and go for a hike. Maybe you will rediscover yourself along the way.
Consider these Hiking Locations for the Perfect Hike
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When you’re planning your next hike, consider these wonderful hiking locations as your choice of destination. They add the splendour of nature to the adventure of hiking in exact amounts. The end result? Magic.
“Great things are done when men and mountains meet; This is not done by jostling in the street.” – William Blake
1. Nandi Hills, Karnataka
Located at a distance of 65kms from the busy city of Bangalore, Nandi Hills is your breath-taking escape into nature. It is a small hike to the top of the hill which is immensely praised for the astounding view of the sunset and the sunrise. You can consider a midnight drive to the base just to add to your experience. Entry is allowed from 6 AM to 6 PM throughout the year and 6 AM to 9 PM in winters. Winters are the best time to visit Nandi hills. You will be absolutely stunned by the sheer beauty of the hiking trail at dawn. Major attractions include the fort, Tipu Sultan’s cannon, the sources of Rivers Palar and Arkavati, Kalyani pond, Amruth Sarovar to name a few.
2. Gilbert Trail, Kasauli
Kasauli is rather famous among travellers and backpackers. Kasauli promises you an otherworldly experience. However, Gilbert trail isn’t the most visited place in Kasauli giving you all the more reason to explore it. The trail is right off the main road, a little ahead of Lover’s Lane. It is about a 2 km hike along the trail which will most definitely have your senses captured till the end. The path tends to get narrower towards the end and a tad bit slippery. So remember to take necessary precautions. The misty weather adds to the perfect scenic beauty of the Gilbert trail. You have to register at the army office before walking down the trail. The 2-hour walk is almost magical and will leave you wanting for more.
3. Dudhsagar Falls, Goa
Dudhsagar Falls is stowed away between the border of Karnataka and Goa. Used as one of the iconic locations in films today, Dudhsagar falls is rich in flora and fauna and is an absolute delight to the eyes. The hiking trail starts from the base of the falls, making its way to Castle Rock and all the way to Chuvashia Falls. The top of the falls allows a spectacular view of the Goa skyline. It is a rather long and tedious hike trail but absolutely worth every bit of effort. Try to leave as early as possible to get the most out of the experience. Through a series of rocky paths and rope bridges, the falls offer more than just satisfaction.
4. Singalila, Darjeeling
Located along the border between India and Nepal, the Singalila range captures the nostalgia and splendour attached to mountain tops better than most other places. The trip begins at the base in Manebhajan and extends towards Sandakphu, located 3163m above the sea level. The trail passes through the Singalila National Park and a number of small villages which only add to the spectacle of the hike. At this point, you’re allowed a gorgeous view of the Himalayas. Consider taking a registered guide and necessary documents after researching. The hike takes about 6 days to complete and you can choose between two routes for return. The mist and cloud may make the climb a little difficult, but there is absolutely no compromise on the aesthetic appeal. Make sure you pack enough warm clothes for the chilly camping sites.
5. Kolukkumalai Tea Estate, Munnar
Kolukkumalai tea estate is one of the most sought after hikes in Munnar. Located about 8100 ft. above sea level, it is regarded as the highest tea plantation hiking locations in the world. The hike begins from Munnar and ends at Kolukkumalai. The 2-hour hike along the difficult trail pays off very well with the gorgeous view of the tea estate with the Messapulimala as the backdrop. Tea tasting and bird watching guided by professionals are one of the activities of the Kolukkumalai tea estate. The sunrise here is mesmerizing and a must for every trekker. Although the property is open all year round, the visibility is lesser during winter.
6. Lonar Crater, Maharashtra
A saline soda lake located in the Lonar, Buldana has been a major tourist attraction of Maharashtra. The crater was formed by a meteorite and is now adorned by a gorgeous lake. The blue-green water and the lush greenery add up together to form the perfect ambiance for hikers. It takes around 4 hours to complete the 7 km hike around the 50,000 years old lake. Consider a cultural and heritage tour of Lonar. Choose either the easy waterfall path or the comparatively difficult stone pathway. The difficulty of the hike increases along the way and so does the mushy ground. Go prepared with proper information. Remember to take a guide along and be back before the nightfall because the area is surrounded by wolves. We have also compiled 5 places for treks in Maharashtra which you can definitely add to your next hiking locations!
7. Har ki Doon Valley
Situated in the lap of the Western Himalayas, Har ki Doon valley is rightly called the “Valley of Gods” and is one of the most magnificent hiking locations. The hiking trail follows through Taluka, towards the Swargarohini peak to the cradle shaped valley which allows a perfect view of the Swargarohini, Bandarpoonch, Blackpeak and Ruinsara peaks at the same time. The trail passes through villages that are centuries old. The trek to the valley gives you a picture perfect view of nature ranging from pine forests, to snow clad mountains to magnificent waterfalls. Consider a small 4km hike to the Jamdhar Glacier while you’re here. Har ki Doon valley is termed as one of the most rewarding hikes in Garhwal.
8. Coaker’s Walk, Kodaikanal
Only about 500m away from the city of Kodaikanal, Coaker’s walk never fails to completely captivate the visitors with its mystical atmosphere. The trail runs along steep slopes, winding around Mt. Nebo. The trail is open to tourists from 7 AM to 7 PM. The mist surrounding the path is absolutely mesmerizing and makes this a must visit hiking locations for trekkers. If you’re lucky enough, you can witness the phenomenon of Barchem Spectre. The trail offers you a magical view of the plains below, the Pambar river, Periyakulam and the city of Madurai. Try staying till the sunset – the view is beyond description.
9. Yuksom – Goecha La, Sikkim
Nestled in the heart of the Himalayas, the Yuksom to Goecha La hike allows you a picturesque view of 14 mountain summits along the border of India and Nepal and is one of the best hiking locations in India. Try visiting during October to November to get lost in the crisp air and the magnificent sunsets of the mountains. The 11-day trek promises you the vast beauty of mountains, rivers and everything in between, passing through numerous terrains and promising you a lifetime’s worth of adventure. Consult a travel agency or an organized trek guide for a better experience of your hike.
Before you plan your trip, make a list of all the requirements and have a thorough knowledge of the hiking locations and place that you’re going to visit. Consider all possibilities and your comfort before choosing your location. So, what are you waiting for? Make a list of all the places you can plan your next hike to and live out your passion.