For countless weary city dwellers, the Chandigarh-Manali NH21 serves as a perfect escape route from the tedium of daily existence into the rejuvenating lap of nature. Unfortunately, the crowds follow them! What if we told you that there is a hidden treasure not far from the madding crowds – with pristine oak and pine forests, suspension bridges, apple tree orchids and crystal clear waterfalls?
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Located 50 km south of Kullu at an altitude of 3500 feet, Tirthan Valley is barely a 35 km drive from Aut on NH21. The scenic location derives its name from the Tirthan River, a tributary of the Beas River in Himachal. Best known as the ‘buffer zone’ of the Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP), a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the valley is picture perfect, sure to appeal to nature lovers, hikers, bird watchers, adventure enthusiasts and the like.
If you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at rod and line fishing, the Tirthan Valley – famous for its brown and rainbow trout – is the place to be. The best time is March to October. But for those who like snow, the winters here can also be fascinating.
A two to three day stay at Tirthan Valley Homestay or Tirthan Valley Himalayan Trout House will surely be unforgettable. Tirthan Valley is perfect for a short break from Delhi (just over 500 km) and is surrounded by little-known picturesque villages and families. Get ready for village hopping.
Places to visit in Tirthan Valley
Located on the way to Manali and Shimla (eight km from Banjar town towards Jalori Pass), Jibhi is a stunning Road Less Taken village with humble wooden houses, an imposing fort and cozy riverside huts. For an encounter with nature, we recommend a stay at the Tirthan Jibhi camp. Interesting fact: Lower Jibhi is called Jaipur.
Head to Chaini Village, a short trek from Jibhi, to experience a piece of Chinese art and archaeology. It is worth making a small Road Less Taken detour at the Sharing Bagi temple. At an altitude of 3120 m, Jalori is hardly the highest pass in Himachal, but this place has its own charm and ranks in the list of best places to visit in Himachal. A scenic walk below can take you to Sarehul Lake where time has stood still.
Gushaini is located on the banks of Tirthan River and offers an endless feast for the eyes and ears. Lush greenery and chirping birds along with a strategic location near the entrance of GHNP make this peaceful village a preferred stay option for travelers.
Gushaini offers the perfect base for a Himalayan trek, allowing you to not only explore the rich flora and fauna inside the famous national park, but also the splendor Road Less Taken of the beautifully carved temples and deodar forests of the region. Do you feel like cycling in the forest?
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For a spectacular view of the Tirthan Valley, trek to Sojha (also spelled as Shoja) in the Seraj region, about five km from Jalori Pass. You don’t have to be an avid hiker or bird watcher to fall in love with this patch of green. It’s the perfect place to do nothing and just soak up the majesty of nature.
Best time to visit Tirthan Valley
Although Tirthan is a very nice, quiet, relaxed and pleasant place almost all year round. However, during the spring season from March to May, it is simply amazingly refreshing and beautiful. The beauty of Tirthan valley, full of apple orchards, is ready to captivate every soul on earth. So the best time to visit Tirthan Valley is during the spring season.
Please note that in winter Tirthan is quite cold and vulnerable to wildlife encroachment, especially the presence of leopards and bears in the area. The presence of snow in the heights forces the wildlife to descend towards the valley. In the snow, due to less food in the mountains, these leopards and bears are bound to attack.
Where is it located
Banjar or Tirthan falls on the alternative route from Road Less Taken Kullu to Shimla via the Jalori Pass. So you can enjoy an adventurous drive through Jalori pass and easily complete a complete circuit like Manali to Tirthan valley to Shimla or Mashobra in one trip.
Weather in Tirthan Valley
The weather in Tirthan remains pleasant and pleasant for Road Less Taken most of the year with temperatures below 24 degrees Celsius in summer. There is usually a cool breeze due to the flowing river. With the flowing river Tirthan adjacent to the valley, you will always feel the music in the air and the abundance of greenery around you adds to this pleasant feeling.
In winter, the minimum temperature can drop below the freezing point, so Road Less Taken snowfall is expected in winter. The weather dries up in the peak winter months. Snowfall is expected in the months of January – February and you can always go for the snow in Jalori Pass