7 Top-Rated Places to Visit in Tirthan Valley (2021)
Tirthan Valley is considered to be one of the best-kept secrets of Himachal Pradesh. Tirthan valley is located at a height of 1600 meters above sea level. It is located in the Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh and derives its name from the mighty Tirthan river. The origin of the Tirthan river is from the icy cold glacial springs of Hanskund which is a snow-capped peak in the verdant Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP). Tirthan Valley is located around 3 km from the entrance of Great Himalayan National Park. This place is abundant in adventurous activities and is a heaven for nature lovers. The Tirthan river meets the gurgling river Beas at Larji and is one of its tributaries. The places in Tirthan valley are lesser known than other places like Manali and Rohtang pass. This fact makes it less visited by tourists and hence the beauty of the place has been kept intact because of less human interaction and intervention in the area. This quiet valley is ideal for adventure activities with your friends and family. You can enjoy activities like trekking, fishing, wildlife watching, and discovering under-explored hill villages here in the quaint place. Or you can choose to do nothing and enjoy the raw nature and spend your time doing some self-realization.
Tirthan is an offbeat destination that has something to offer for everyone. It is an ideal place to visit for all age groups as they will find activities for themselves. This quiet valley is ideal for trekking, fishing, wildlife watching, and discovering the unexplored hill villages. The best thing is that the entire region of the valley is dotted with small Himalayan villages. These villages have cultures of their own.
If you are a nature lover and a history buff, you will enjoy walking around these villages and getting to know their customs. The villagers are very welcoming, and they would give you a heartwarming welcome and talk to you with zeal if you want to get to know more about their culture and customs. A guide to planning you trip to Tirthan is given below.
7 Top-Rated Places to Visit in Tirthan Valley
- Jalori Pass: You can choose to go for a hike to Jalori pass or you can also drive to Jalori Pass. If you choose to go for a trek, it starts from Shojha village and is a moderate level trek and is meant for people who are considerably fit. The path to Jalori pass is enchanting with vast coniferous forests. It is best to go for this trek between the months of mid-June to mid-October when walking through the snow is a comparatively easy task. The path also leads to the nearby Serolsar Lake and ‘Budhi Naagin’ temple. You must visit the lake and temple and can spend some time here before reaching the top.Jalori pass is a place to quiet and calm and is situated away from the hustle-bustle of the city. The pass is located on the way from Khanag towards Shojha. It is nestled in the peaks of the majestic northern Himalayas. There are restaurants available that serve nice lunches at the top of the Jalori pass. You will also get to visit the Mahakali temple known as Jalori Mata. It is visited by thousands of devotees from the nearby villages. The road leading to Jalori pass is called NH305. You must prepare yourself, your driver, and your vehicle for a trip to Jalori pass as the road is quite narrow, steep, uneven, and full of potholes, making it a bumpy ride. The road to the top is both scenic and challenging. But all the trouble is worth everything when you see the view from the top of Jalori pass. This is a place one must visit while traveling to Tirthan Valley. Image Source
- Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP): Great Himalayan National Park is one of the new national parks in India. It gained its title of being called a national park in 1999. This park has a wide variety of flora and fauna. It derives its name from the fact that it is surrounded by snow capped mountains of three sides which makes it one of the most unique and beautiful national parks in the country. The view in this park is mesmerizing. The park has around 375 species of flora and 31 species of mammals including the big cats and 181 species of birds. You can hear the voices of many birds while walking in this area. It is a unique experience to be here in this national park. In addition of the flora and fauna what makes GHNP more attractive is that there are several villages situated in the premises of the national park. The local architecture of the houses in the village is very attractive and is not disturbed to preserve their culture. Every village in the area has their own unique culture and their different architectural and even cooking styles. You will get to see and learn a lot about the Himalayan life while vising Tirthan Valley.
- River Crossing: River Crossing is a unique adventure activity in the valley which probably is organised here only. Adventure seekers can have great fun while doing this. In River Crossing, a person is tied to a safety harness and slides from one point to the other, in the turbulent streams of Tirthan River. The gush of the river and the icy cold streams of the river while doing this activity is a different type of adrenaline rush. You should not miss doing River Crossing if you are an adventure junkie.
- Serolsar Lake: This lake is situated in the Tirthan Valley and is located at a distance of 25 km from Banjar town. Serolsar Lake is a beautiful lake situated at a distance of around 5 km from the Jalori pass. This lake can be reached by a trek from Shojha or Jalori Pass. Serolsar Lake is located at an altitude of 3199 m above sea level. It is surrounded by thick coniferous forests. The water in the river is very clear and the perfect shade of blue. The legend says that even if a small leaf falls into the Lake the birds around take them out of the lake and keeps the water crystal clear. The water of the lake is also believed to have medicinal properties. People from nearby areas have a belief that the water in this lake treats diseases. Make sure you wear proper shoes while visiting Serolsar Lake as the lake has a narrow walking track lined up with thick tall trees on the exterior. There is a very famous local temple on one side of the lake which is called Buddha Nagini temple. The devotees worship and offer ghee to the deity. It is said that the lake is very deep and that Budhi Nagini herself lives in a golden palace at the bottom of the lake and protects it. The trek from Jalori Pass to Serolsar Lake is 5 km one way and takes about 2 hrs. This is an intermediate level and people with decent fitness will be able to do this trek. The trek starts from just below the temple to Jalori pass. In winters, the pass is generally closed because there are around 5-8 feet of snow during the winters. It is best to visit Jalori pass during the summers.
- Jibhi: Jibhi is known as the hamlet of Tirthan valley. It is a very beautiful village which is picturesque and scenic in the spring and summers and turns into a winter wonderland during winters. This village is covered in snow during the winters and is a must visit if you are in Tirthan valley.
- Trout Fishing: Tirthan Valley is the place to be for you if you like to eat fish and enjoy catching your own fish. You can go to the numerous hidden waterfalls in the area and enjoy catching some of the finest Himalayan Trout for your next meal. Since the place is not very commercialized, it is best if you carry your equipment. Or if you in the mood to learn some local methods to catch fish, you must accompany some locals on your fishing adventure.
- Camping: Camping is the best way to enjoy your time in the lap of nature in the wilderness. You will get to stay amidst the lush greenery if you are planning to camp here. Do not worry if you do not have any camping equipment with you to carry. Many tourist companies provide camping services at the best prices and you can make most of it. They provide you with all the equipment like tents, sleeping bags, and other necessary equipment. They arrange a bonfire for you to stay warm and enjoy the outdoors as well. It is a one-of-a-kind experience. Do not miss camping while you are in Tirthan Valley.
Best Time To Visit Tirthan Valley
Tirthan valley can be visited at any time of the year but the best time to visit is between March and June which are the summer months. The weather during these months is pleasantly cool and is considered perfect to explore the surrounding flora and fauna. This is a great time to see the blooming flowers in the spring season and enjoy the lush greenery around. It is a nice time for the tourists to get around and to enjoy the wilderness in the valley. September and Octoberare also good months to visit Tirthan. During summers i.e., between March to June, the temperature does not drop very low in the valley. The weather is pleasant in summers and is considered the ideal time to spend some quiet time in these hills.
Summer in Tirthan starts in March and lasts up to May and June and this time is the most visited in the city as the temperature is pleasant. However, the place remains less visited by tourists which allows you to spend some quiet time here.
Winters start in October and last up to February. These months are also good to visit the valley especially for people who are looking for places where they can find snow during winters. The valley receives heavy snowfall during winters and is covered in white color of snow. It is a sight to behold. You can visit valley during winters if you have the heart to bear subzero degree temperatures. You can choose the best time for your visit based on your convenience.
How to Reach Tirthan Valley?
The are several means of transport for you to choose from to reach Tirthan valley. The nearest airport is Bhuntar airport in Kullu and the nearest railway station is Joginder Nagar Railway station. Tirthan is well connected by road as well. Taking airways or railways is also a very good option which can be later followed by a small road trip to reach Tirthan. Although it depends on the conditions of the roads, the grace of weather gods, and the traffic.
Air Travel to Tirthan: The nearest domestic airport to Tirthan is Bhuntar airport which is approximately 8 km from the valley. All major airline companies are operating at this route. The taxis majorly prepaid are available outside the airport and can be booked to take you to Tirthan.The Chandigarh International Airport is also one of the closest international airports to Tirthan. It is around 70 km from Tirthan.You can hire a taxi to reach Tirthan from Chandigarh airport. It takes 3 to 4 hours to reach Tirthan from Chandigarh by taxi. You can hire a taxi from any of these airports to go to Tirthan or you can go to and take a bus that operates quite frequently on these routes from the major cities and their bus stations.
Rail Travel to Tirthan: The Nearest railway station is Shimla which is around 60 km from the valley. Joginder Nagar is also close to Tirthan which is around 165 km. You can easily choose to travel to Tirthan by train from Ambala or Chandigarh which are well connected to the railways from the Joginder Nagar station. You can take a train from Delhi to Chandigarh and then to Joginder Nagar. From Joginder Nagar, you can easily take a bus to a taxi to reach Tirthan valley. You will be able to enjoy the stunning views of the Himalayas on your journey all through. It is one of the most scenic routes which will take you between the hills and lush green mountains.
Road Travel to Tirthan: There is a frequent bus service from Delhi to Manali or Mandi directly. You can take a bus from the bus stations in major cities like Delhi, Chandigarh, Shimla, etc. You can take a taxi to reach Tirthan from the Manali city taxi stand. Alternatively, you can hire a taxi to travel to Tirthan directly which will be a little expensive but worth the money as you will be able to enjoy the beautiful view of the beautiful mountains and valleys on your way to Tirthan valley.
Places to Stay in Tirthan Valley
You would not find luxurious properties in Tirthan Valley. Some of the houses built in ancient architectural styles haven been converted into vacation homes, cottages that are available for rent or either homestays. Homestays are generally the houses of the locals where they rent the entire place or a room to the visitors. People who like to stay in the hustle-bustle can find decent accommodation at some of the neighboring villages or towns. Staying at these places is best suited for people who like to live their life like the locals in the area do. The heartwarming love you get from the locals by just talking to them politely is so satisfying and something people living in big cities is not accustomed to. Some of the properties that are famous among the tourists now in the valley are Whispering pines cottage, Jujurana stays, Angler’s Paradise, Stone Cottage, Fisherman’s Wharf, Himalayan Kothi Kais, JJ by Vivaan Resorts is among the few others.
Things to Eat in Tirthan Valley
You will not find a fancy five-star meal here in Tirthan Valley. Tirthan Valley is a comparatively less visited place in Himachal Pradesh. There are a few eating joints serving food here.For most of your meals, you will have to rely on your host to provide you with food as they have in house kitchens serving food. You can always try local food which in this area are majorly small stalls with Maggi and other quick snacks for you to munch on. It is advisable to carry food on your journey here so that so you can eat something when you feel hungry during your treks in the area. There are 2 small restaurants Icy Spice and Sharma Ji ka Dhaba in Banjar that are famous among tourists. There is a famous dhaba on top of Serolsar Lake that is visited by tourists going to the lake.