As a person who loves the great outdoors and going on hikes, there is nothing I love more than the fresh air and a great view, something you can get plenty of in Alberta. 

During my last 8 months in Canada, I’ve spent a lot of time in Alberta and have been trying to find the best day hikes that don’t have heaps of tourists. Who doesn’t prefer quiet, peaceful walks through nature? During the winter, that’s an easy task, as many of the more difficult trails are closed due to the weather. Plus, who wants to go hiking in -40c?! Not me.  

However, during summer, also known as the peak season, it was a challenge to find off-the-beaten trails in Alberta that were short enough to complete in 1 day and didn’t have hundreds of tourists.

Below, I have listed some of my favourite day hikes off the beaten path in Alberta. Some are easy for beginners, and some are more tricky, but all feature a great view without too much effort.

East End of Rundle

Stunning views over Whitemans pond and Ha Ling peak from the East End of Rundle Trail

Stunning views over Whitemans pond and Ha Ling peak from the East End of Rundle Trail

At 4.8 km long and taking between 6-7 hours to complete, the East End of Rundle hike is one of the slightly longer day hikes in Alberta and one that’s a real leg burner. Starting on the edge of a forest on the side of Rundle mountain, this trail is steep pretty much the entire way. It can be difficult to tell what direction the trail leads as there are not too many signs anymore – keep an eye out for the orange ribbons! They’ll help guide you. 

I highly recommend bringing some gloves, as it can become a difficult scramble around the halfway point. You may need to use your hands to keep yourself stable. After around 2 hours you’ll be rewarded with stunning views over the Whitemans pond and its neighbouring mountain Ha Ling peak – this makes a fantastic spot to watch the sunrise (or sunset). The summit can get extremely windy in this part of Alberta, so be careful!

Valley of the Five Lakes

The Valley of the Five Lake hike is one of the shortest day hikes on our list in Alberta. At an average of 1.5 hours to complete, it’s a simple trail that doesn’t take much effort, which means anyone can enjoy it. With a very low elevation, this is the perfect short walk without breaking a sweat. There are two steep sections, but for no more than a few steps. Some parts of the trail get very narrow, you may have to walk single file if travelling in a group. Along the way, you’ll have multiple opportunities to stop and enjoy the lake views at the many openings by the water’s edge.

Ha Ling Peak

Take in the view from HaLing peak on one of Alberta's best day hikes

Take in the view from HaLing peak

If you did the East End of Rundle trail, you’d be able to see Ha Ling Peak in your view, but what about climbing Ha Ling for yourself? One of the more moderate day hikes in Alberta, this trail has chains to use as handrails to help you when you’re climbing up due to the uneven terrain. In typical Alberta fashion, it can be extremely windy when you get to the peak, so be mindful that it can throw you off balance if you’re not careful. 

Along the route, you’ll have the chance to stop for photos on a few flat viewpoints before you reach the summit of Ha Ling Peak. From the top, you’ll see the town of Canmore as well as much of the Bow Valley down below. It’ll take you an average of 4-5 hours to reach the summit and make it back down the trail.

The Big Beehive

This hike puts a new spin on a world-famous lake in Banff National Park. The Big Beehive trail is only really accessible during the summer months and can get quite busy during this peak season. As it is a loop trail, you can continue through the entire trail without backtracking, meaning you get fresh views for the entire route. 

Most average hikers with a good level of fitness can finish this trail in under 6 hours, making it suited for a day hike. This trail has a few different highlights including Lake Louise, Mirror Lake, and the tea house before heading to the summit, this just gives you plenty of photo opportunities to enjoy! 

Grassi Lakes

The Grassi Lakes hike offers options for both beginner and advanced hikers

The Grassi Lakes hike offers options for both beginner and advanced hikers

Also in Canmore, The Grassi Lakes hike is probably one of the most easy-to-do short day hikes in Alberta. Although this hike is rated as number 1 in the region on Alltrails, every time I have been I’ve seen no more than 3 others on the trail. This is a walking route the whole family can enjoy! It’s a trail with two options, the easy way and the more difficult way, and even as a loop they only take between 1 and 2 hours to complete. 

The easy way takes you up a gradual hill through the forest until you reach the 2 small lakes and beautiful viewpoint. Whereas the more difficult way keeps you on lower elevation until the last portion of the trail. This is where you come across a large waterfall and steep staircase built into the cliff. This can become slippery due to water spray, so hold onto the rails, but make sure you enjoy the view! 

Lake Louise Lakefront Trail

The Lake Louise Lakefront Trail is another one of Alberta’s short day hikes at only 1.5 hours to complete. This one takes you along the edge of the turquoise Lake Louise – a nice change compared to the Big Beehive trail that takes you up and over the lake for a birds-eye view. 

With barely any elevation, you won’t end up with muscle aches, which I’m sure you’ll be thankful for. In the summer you can walk around the lake, and during the winter you can even walk on it when it freezes over. This is a year-round accessible trail for people with all fitness levels. 

Prairie Mountain

Summiting Prairie Mountain

Summiting Prairie Mountain

Average hikers finish the Prairie Mountain hike in 2 hours (1 hour up and just over an hour down) but many can finish quicker in clear weather. The trailhead starts southwest of Bragg Creek near the Elbow River. Although steep, (the trail reaches an elevation of 666 m), it’s a pretty easy walk for most of the way up and accessible for most fitness levels. 

There are endless mountain views from the viewpoint across the valley, so Prairie Mountain is one of the best day hikes in Alberta to avoid the crowds. Although this is a hike that can be accessed all year round, the driving access road usually closes for the winter due to weather conditions. If you do decide to hike Prairie Mountain during the colder months, crampons and spikes are recommended, as the scramble can get a bit slippery. When you make it to the top, you’ll have a nice surprise, seeing the flag waving at the summit!

Boom Lake Trail

The Boom Lake Trail is another trail with minimal incline and is more of a stroll than a hike. It takes roughly 3.5 hours to complete, so it’s perfect if you’re looking for a day hike in Alberta. As an out and back trail, you’ll need to backtrack once you get to the lake to reach the Boom Lake Trail finish line. As you walk along the track, you will see a few small streams as you head towards Boom Lake. In summer, they are crystal clear and flowing and add to the beauty of the region.

In the winter months, these streams can become dangerously icy along the trail, so use caution. When hiking during summer and spring, you can expect to see a stunning bright blue lake that Canada is known for. Take it in and enjoy your reward for walking the trail!

Summary

There you have it, 8 fun day hikes in Alberta that offer great views of the province! Of course, if I listed every single one we would be here for days, so I have handpicked some of the most enjoyable – but also less busy – trails for hikers to enjoy without being stuck in a crowd. Because let’s face it, nobody likes having to line up for a photo op at a viewpoint!

The Best Day Hikes in Alberta Canada to Avoid the Crowds

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We all know Miami for its awesome beaches and fantastic cuisine. However, Miami has different kinds of hiking spots that will allow you to experience Miami off the beaten path. While you won’t be scrambling up rocks or climbing hills, you’ll be able to take in the unique natural beauty of Miami on these wondering hiking paths. In today’s topic, we will be talking about 7 of the best places to go hiking in Miami. So, what are we waiting for? Let’s dive straight into it!

Myres Bayside Park Commodore Hiking Trail

Distance: 7.1km

Difficulty: Easy

Located in the heart of Miami, Kenneth M Myres Bayside Park is a perfect place for short trips and outings with families. The park draws a sharp contrast between the sky-high buildings and a beautiful bay. The park is family-friendly and it also has an outdoor gym and auditorium. It has been a picnic spot for a long time now and people also enjoy riding bikes through the greenery of nature.

Speaking of best trail, the Commodore Trail holds this prestigious title. The trail starts parallel to the highway and then gradually heads to the coconut grooves. The path is made of concrete surrounded by trees and plants on both sides. As you move through the trees, the city noises fade, and you will experience a peaceful atmosphere off the beaten path in Miami. The beautiful bay also falls on this trail and if you are lucky you can also get to see some iguanas on your way. The trail is pet-friendly for dogs, but make sure they stay on a leash all the time.

Big Cypress Florida Trail- Blue Orange Trail

Distance: 24km

Difficulty: Easy

Hiking near Miami on Big Cypress Florida Trail- Blue Orange Trail

Big Cypress Florida Trail- Blue Orange Trail

Want to spend more quality time with mother nature? How about a long hiking trip off the beaten path in Miami? Sounds great? Well, in that case, Big Cypress National Preserve should be on the top spot of your holiday list. Conserving over 729,000 acres of a vast swamp, this preserve is home to diverse flora and fauna including the endangered species, The Florida Panther. It is a lovely place to go on a scenic drive with your family. There are lots of picnic spots, swamp tours, and tons of outdoor activities along with 8 different campgrounds.

You can find many hiking and driving trails throughout the preserve with each having its own set of unique experiences. The trail that we love the most is the Blue Orange Trail Loop as it is lightly trafficked and perfect for all sorts of skill levels. The trail is covered with wildflowers and contains both tropical and temperate climate trees. You might also find some alligators in the swamp so it is recommended to take a guide with you. 

Tropical Park Tropical Park Loop

Distance: 6km

Difficulty: Easy

It’s time for some lake time! Situated on a former race track, Tropical Park is a place that attracts tourists throughout the year with its scenic view. The park features three beautiful lakes and a green river bank which is home to many birds and other wildlife species. You will find many picnic tables with barbeque grills and many outdoor recreations including a sports center and boxing center. Dogs aren’t allowed on the trails but there is a different dog park area.

Topical Park Loop is a beautiful place to go hiking in Miami with a beautiful view of the river and the surrounding greenery. The trail has a hill for people to run up and down and have some fun. Beside the lake, you can find raccoons, ducks, iguanas, and many other varieties of animals. The landscape is breathtaking and the view of the blue lake under the blue sky is just beyond words. People also love the food here so don’t miss to check out the food trucks.

Oleta River State Park Trail

Distance: 4.8km

Difficulty: Moderate

Oleta River State Park Trail

Oleta River State Park Trail

Oleta River State Park is the largest urban park in Florida. It is situated on an oasis just around 30 minutes drive from downtown Miami. There are off-road bicycling trails, hiking trails, paddle boat trails throughout the park. If you are an adventure lover, this place is made for you! Old rustic cabins with air conditioners can also be found inside the state park. Activities like fishing and swimming are also allowed by the river. Though you won’t be far from Miami, you’ll truly feel off the beaten path.

Oleta River State Park Trail passes through mangrove forests and is slightly more challenging than the other trails. The trail is great for traveling away from the hustle and bustle of the city. The best part is that the trails are interconnected, so you can start from one and end on a completely different trail.  The mangrove trees also do a good job of blocking off the direct sunlight, so you don’t have to carry sunscreen with you. Your pet friend is allowed to company you on this trip, but he must be on a leash on the trails.

Everglades National Park Anhinga Trail

Distance: 1.3km

Difficulty: Easy

Just outside Miami - go hiking on the Anhinga Trail in the Florida Everglades

Just outside Miami – go hiking on the Anhinga Trail in the Florida Everglades

One of the central attractions near Miami is the Everglades National Park. This national park is the third-largest national park and largest subtropical wilderness in the US. As a UNESCO World Heritage site, there are many different kinds of endangered species and wildlife in the vicinity. The landscape of this park is wonderful and you can go on boating trips to the rivers and lakes. If you are planning to stay overnight amid nature, you will also find several campgrounds in the park.

For such a large park, like Everglades, Anhinga Trail is relatively short, yet people love this trail more than any other. The trail features beautiful wildflowers and during the winter season, you can witness numerous wildlife species. You can also go birdwatching in this family-friendly tour of a lifetime. The winter season is the best time for visiting the park as the water level remains low and birds migrate to take shelter during the winters. A delight for the bird lovers!

Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park Lighthouse Loop

Distance: 4.8km

Difficulty: Easy

Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park Lighthouse Loop

Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park Lighthouse Loop

Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park is a beach park and is often considered one of the top 10 beaches nationwide. This place is historically diverse, as Cape Florida has been a symbol of revolution in the pages of history. Nowadays, the park is used as a relaxing spot for hikers or bikers who want to get off the beaten path in Miami. You can go on guided tours and explore the history of the park, or you can enjoy the lovely natural landscape. You will also find many cottages and a lighthouse in the park. 

The Cape Florida lighthouse was built around 1825 and because of its rich historical value, visitors love visiting the Lighthouse Loop throughout the year. The trail is family-friendly presenting beautiful scenarios of rivers, trees, and wildflowers. You can also take a tour of the lighthouse and also take a tour of the park by boat or kayak. Make sure you stay till the evening as the view of the sunset over the bay is stunning.

Biscayne National Park Black Creek Canal Trail

Distance: 2.7km

Difficulty: Easy

Hiking near downtown Miami on Biscayne National Park Black Creek Canal Trail

Biscayne National Park Black Creek Canal Trail

Last but not least is the Biscayne National Park. Located right in Miami, yet feeling like a world away, this park has a lot to offer starting from hiking, boating, fishing, canoeing, and lobstering as well. This place is an ideal spot for water activities and birdwatching. Biscayne National Park also has its fair share of historical importance. You can opt-out for scuba diving and explore the vibrant colors of the coral reef.

 Take a short trip along the beachside and enjoy the scenic beauty and pleasing sounds of the ocean with your family through the Black Creek Canal Trail. The trail features a short hiking trip down the mangrove lined-shore that leads to the Colonial Bird Protection area. The place has lots of resting spots and some picnic tables too. There are information panels throughout the trail which give you directions and interesting information regarding the vivid history of the park. 

Start your Hiking Adventure in Miami

Miami is one of the largest cities in Florida and also one of the most common tourist destinations. But if you’re looking to experience Miami off the beaten path, you can find beautiful nature and wildlife while hiking in Miami. Enjoy your trip!

The exquisite Valley of Flowers National Park is dream come true for all visitors and hikers alike. It is abundant in gorgeous and exotic floral kinds, as well as species threatened with extinction.

The Valley of Flowers is situated in the Western Front of the Himalayas of Uttarakhand, at an elevation of 3,658 metres above sea level in the picturesque Bhyundar Valley. The Valley of Flowers, located in the Chamoli area, is an 87-square-kilometre landscape encompassing tumbling waterfalls, whispering streams, verdant meadows, gleaming glaciers, and vibrant himalayan flowers.

Majestic snowy mountain peaks, beautiful meadows, and vast vibrant flower arrays abound in this magnificent valley. Diverse foliage, uncommon himalayan flowers, and, most significantly, therapeutic herbs may be found along the Valley of Flowers trek.

With the changing of the seasons, this diverse array of nature takes on new colours and tones, providing distinct varied outlook in changing seasons. The sun sets over the Valley of Flowers National Park, which is a sight not to miss. At this hour, the undulating landscapes and beautiful mountain ranges take on a breathtaking quality.

Cobra Lily, Brahma Kamal, and Blue Poppy are among the unusual himalayan flowers found in this Valley of Flowers. Snow leopards, musk deer, Asiatic black deer, red fox, brown bear, and flying squirrels all live in this dynamic National Park.

Keen photographers, biologists, and flower enthusiasts flock to this location in quest of surreal environs and unspoiled splendour.

Until Frank S Smythe, a hiker, found it in 1931, this lovely valley was absolutely unknown and unexplored. It was originally known as Bhyundar Valley, but Smythe renamed it Valley of Flowers in 1931.

This Valley was proclaimed a National Park in 1982 for its outstanding spectacular natural characteristics, a wealth of high altitude species, and conservation and preservation standing, and UNESCO recognised it as a World Heritage Site in 2005.

The Valley of Flowers National Park offers a variety of activities to attract visitors. Trekkers and environment enthusiasts may hike up to this valley to enjoy the tranquil waterfalls, pristine sceneries, lush forests of oak and pine trees overflowing with snow-capped mountains and different types of flowers that are not accessible elsewhere.

It also has a wonderful location in sight for worshippers and vacationers. Devotees ascend the difficult trek path to the Hemkund Sahib, a well-known Sikh temple in Uttarakhand. It also enables you to visit places such as Ghangaria and Bhyundar.

The best time to visit the Valley of Flowers is during the monsoon season, which runs from July to September. After the monsoon rains, the Himalayan flowers and meadows are in full bloom. The Valley of Flowers begins on June 1st and concludes on October 31st. The admission charge to the Valley is INR 150 for native trekkers and INR 600 for foreign visitors.

Attractions in the Valley of Flowers National Park

Joshimath

Joshimath town blanketed in snow

Joshimath town blanketed in snow

The hallowed town of Joshimath, snuggled in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district within the valley of flowers radiates its divine atmosphere over the whole Garhwal area. Lord Badri’s idol is carried from Badrinath to Vasudeva temple in Joshimath, and Joshimath is renowned as his winter abode.

For its startling height of 1890 metres above sea level, the town of Joshimath is also known as a hill station. In addition, the Alaknanda and Dhauliganga rivers converge at the Vishnuprayag convergence, which is visible from Joshimath.

Hathi Parvat and other Himalayan peaks provide a bewildering vista. Joshimath, tucked away in the Himalayas, is also regarded as the renowned entrance to mountaineering, with numerous treks available.

Ghangria

Every trekker would drool over the prospect of enjoying the serenity, tranquillity of one of the most exquisite regions of the Garhwal Himalayas, the Ghangaria village. The trekkers who embark on the Hemkund Sahib and Valley of Flowers short trek frequently visit the town of Ghangaria.

Ghangaria is 6 kilometres from Hemkund Sahib and 5 kilometres from the Valley of Flowers. The hamlet is situated at the intersection of the Bhyundar and Pushpawati rivers, which compose the Lakshman Ganga. Ghangria is known to be the last human settlement in Bhyundar Valley which serves as a base camp for trekkers to Hemkund and the Valley of Flowers.

During the winter Ghangaria village is carpeted with layers of snow. It is only navigable in between the months of May and September. At Ghangaria, you may completely unplug yourself from the city’s frantic hustle and bustle and restore your health and spirit. Ghangaria is a haven for thrill-seekers and anyone looking to experience the Himalayan landscape’s untapped grandeur.

Hemkund Sahib and Hemkund Sahib Lake

Valley of Flowers, located in the famed Nanda Devi National Park, is home to hundreds of different flower species, making for a delightful trip. This valley displays a stunning explosion of colours that is beyond description.

You may also do the Hemkund Sahib trek as an add-on to your Valley of Flowers short trek. The Hemkund Sahib journey begins in Ghangaria and winds its way through lush pine and oak woods, alpine meadows, and murmuring streams.

Visiting Hemkund Sahib is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. It requires a difficult ascent from Ghangaria. Hemkund Sahib is 6 kilometres away from Valley of Flowers. It will take roughly 6 to 7 hours to get from Valley of Flowers to Hemkund Sahib.

Hemkund Sahib is 4633 metres above sea level, and this beautiful hike concludes with the Sikh Gurudwara in Hemkund. This hike is made worthwhile by the appealing landscape of Hemkund Sahib and the lake.

Reflection of Nanda Devi Hills on Hemkund Sahib Lake

Reflection of Nanda Devi National Park Hills on Hemkund Sahib Lake

The Hemkund Sahib lake is a stunning high-altitude lake this is commonly referred to as Hemkund, which literally translates as “Snow Lake.” This spectacular location is bordered by snow-capped peaks and nourished by gleaming glaciers.

A little stream named Himganga runs out of this lake from the glaciers of the HathiParvat and Saptshring peaks. The tourists are enthralled by the reflections of the enticing surroundings in this crystal-clear lake that is as frigid as snow.

Flower Valley

Valley of Flowers Short Trek

Breathtaking views in the Valley of Flowers

The valley of Himalayan flowers as explained above is the major attraction of this trek as it lives up to its name with an endless supply of blooms throughout the season. The Valley of Flowers’ unique environment is like a done deal: an exquisite valley bedecked with enormous spreads of flowers.

Amidst the rocky mountainous regions of Zanskar and the Great Himalayas are lovely meadows studded with indigenous highland wildflowers. Horticulturists, flower admirers, bird watchers, wildlife shooters, hikers, environment enthusiasts, and thrill-seekers from all over the globe are drawn to this valley’s pristine splendour.

Local Culture

Rishikesh is well-known as the World Yoga Capital. Several yoga-related festivals are held here on a regular basis. When it comes to the question of the well-being of our physical system through practising yoga, the first name that comes to mind is the International Yoga Festival which specializes in teaching the methods of asanas.

Every year, during January and February, Basant Panchami is observed. According to the Hindu calendar, this is the second final month of the year and is known as Magh (January-February). On this day, people honour the Goddess Saraswati and dress in yellow.

Uttarakhand celebrates Ganga Dusshera with great zeal. According to the Hindu calendar, this event begins on the tenth day of Jaishtha (May-June). The River Ganges is venerated for a span of 10 days during the Ganga Dusshera.

The festival of Holi is also widely celebrated, with a focus on joy, dancing, and colours. During the month of Phalgun, the celebration colours the city with gaiety and affection. These are some of the divine customs and traditions amongst many followed in Uttarakhand in the valley of flowers.

Valley of Flowers Short Trek Itinerary

Day 1: Haridwar to Joshimath

Distance Covered: 290 km
Time Taken: 10 Hours

On the first day, you arrive in Haridwar and travel 290 kilometres in 10 hours to reach Joshimath. The perfect road ride from Haridwar to Joshimath is a visual feast for the eyes and the spirit.

Day 2: Govindghat to Ghangaria

Distance Covered: 40KM Drive and 9 km Trek
Time Taken: 6 Hours

Board a cab to Govindghat, followed by a 4-kilometre journey to Pulna. Pulna is the location in this region which is accessible by transport. Govindghat, located 22 kilometres from Joshimath and at a height of 5,500 feet, is a popular Sikh pilgrimage site.

It’s the closest town to Hemkund Lake. You will then have to climb 9 kilometres from Pulna to Ghangaria which is this trek’s base camp.

Day 3: Ghangaria to Hemkund Sahib and Hemkund Lake and Back Again

Distance Covered: 10 km
Time Taken: 7 Hours

The Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara and Hemkundlakefrom here is a 10-kilometer journey known as the Hemkund Sahib Yatra. At an elevation of 14,200 feet, you will find the the Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara, the most awaited part of the Valley of Flowers trek and the world’s tallest Gurudwara.

The last 5 kilometres of the journey from Ghangaria to Hemkund Sahib particularly is very tough.   Hemkund Sahib does not permit overnight accommodation. It is recommended that you depart Hemkund Sahib by 2 p.m. in order to return to Ghangaria before dark.

Day 4: Ghangaria to Valley of Flowers and Back

Distance Covered: 5 km
Time Taken: 4 Hours

You get up early in order to spend as much time as possible in the gorgeous Valley of Flowers. The 5-kilometre hike is not particularly strenuous and follows a nearly level path throughout. It will take you to the most vibrant valley, which is adorned with beautiful himalayan flowers of all colours.

This magnificent scene, complete with snow-capped peaks, fluffy clouds overhead, and a flowing creek cutting across the valley, is reminiscent of a painting. Spend considerable time in this natural wonderland before returning to Ghangaria for the night.

Day 5: Trekking Back From Ghangaria to Govindghat and Driving Back to Joshimath

On Day 5, it is time to return to Govindghat through a 14-kilometre hike. Reaching Govindghat, you can spend the night in Joshimath accommodating yourself in a local guest house.

Day 6: Drive Back From Joshimath to Haridwar

Head back to Haridwar via Uttarakhand’s bewitching topography, inhaling the lovely sights and reminiscing over your six-day trip in the wild Himalayan foothills.

There has been a rise in demand for trying out adventure sports in recent years. Normal getaways are turning into adventure vacations, and we could not have been happier! People are pushing themselves out of their comfort zones to make memories of a different kind.

Trekking is one such adventure sport. The youth, especially, has started coming in groups of friends and family to experience life in the mountains and feel its thrill. Two of India‘s most popular trekking terrains include Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand.

The Himalayas have changing topography. It enables adventure lovers to trek from lush green meadows to snow-capped summits. The beautiful landscape of the terrain and its distinct, rich culture and wildlife attracts trekkers worldwide. The climate, too, experiences massive changes in temperature throughout the year.

Himachal Pradesh is no less than a trekker’s paradise. You can choose from various treks, depending on your fitness level, trekking experience, and time at hand. Some treks in Himachal Pradesh include Hampta Pass Trek, Bhrigu Lake Trek, Pin Bhaba Pass Trek, and Rupin pass trek.

Uttarakhand, also known as ‘Devbhoomi,’ is equally enticing for a wandering soul. Located in the northern part of India, Uttarakhand ranges from Garhwal Himalayas to Kumaon. This vast expanse of land ensures breathtaking views, rich biodiversity, and challenging terrains.

Just like in the case of treks in Himachal Pradesh, this region also allows you to select from various treks. Some treks in Uttarakhand include Valley of Flowers National Park Trek, Har Ki Dun Valley Trek, Kedarkantha Summit trek, and Kuari Pass trek.

Four best treks in Uttarakhand

1. Valley of Flowers National Park Trek

Duration- 6 days

Explore the Valley of Flowers - one of the Best Treks in Uttarakhand

Explore the Valley of Flowers – one of the best treks in Uttarakhand

Located at an altitude of 14,100 ft, the Valley of Flowers is one of the best Himalayan treks. In 1982, the valley got declared a National Park due to its rich biodiversity. The meadow lies nestled between the rugged Himalayas and Zanskar ranges, and true to its name, is a paradise for nature lovers.

Unlike other treks in Uttarakhand, you can enjoy this 38 km trek best in the monsoon months of July and August. The rain brings in fresh blooms and increases the beauty of the verdant meadows, allowing the trekker to bask in nature’s goodness.

Major attractions include Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve, Hemkund Lake, Shri Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara, Joshimath, Govindghat, and Ghangria village. The difficulty level of this terrain is easy to moderate with very few steeps and lows, making it ideal for beginners with decent stamina and physical fitness. Avid trekkers also enjoy this trek in Uttarakhand.

2. Har Ki Dun Valley Trek

Duration- 7 days

Experience the dynamic landscape of the Garhwal Himalayas on the Har Ki Dun Valley Trek

Experience the dynamic landscape of the Garhwal Himalayas on the Har Ki Dun Valley Trek

Trekking in the Himalayas is always an experience to remember, cherish and savour. The Har ki Dun Valley Trek or the hanging valley is no exception. Many adrenaline enthusiasts get attracted to this 47 km long trek for its cultural history and diverse topography.

The Garhwal Himalayas offer a dynamic landscape compromising pristine rivers, rugged terrains, alpine meadows, quaint hamlets, and dense forests. The valley stands at an elevation of 11,700ft, and the journey leading to it is of spiritual importance.

Highlights of the trek include glaciers like Jaundhar and Swargarohini, Bandarpooch, Borasu Pass, Morinda Lake, Kalanag, and close interaction with locals residing in the villages of Sankri, Osla, Saud, Seema, and Taluka.

The trek is accessible all year round, but the best time to visit is April to November, especially in summers and post-monsoons. It is a moderate to difficult trek, and you will need to work on your fitness at least a few months before the trek. You will have to cover long stretches each day.

3. Kedarkantha Summit trek

Duration- 6 days

Take in panoramic Himlayan views on the Kedarkantha Summit trek

Take in panoramic Himalayan views on the Kedarkantha Summit trek

Located at an elevation of 12,500 ft., Kedarkantha Summit Trek is one of the best Himalayan treks. It exposes you to the lesser-known parts of Uttarakhand, beautiful campsites, tiny hamlets, and the rich lifestyle of the people dwelling in them.

This 20 km stretch is within the territory of Govind Pashu Vihar National Park, and so you will be able to spot quite a bit of Himalayan wildlife here. It is a moderate to difficult trek. The region receives generous snowfall from November to March, making it an absolute favourite among snow lovers.

However, one can trek this region at all seasons. One of the most striking factors of this trek is the panoramic view of the mountain peaks from the summit—Kalanag, Dhauladhar, Swargarohini, Gangotri, Bandarpooch, and Yamunotri, to name a few. The village of Sankri and the Juda ka Talab campsite also deserve mention.

4. Kuari Pass trek: Lord Curzon’s Trail

Duration- 6 days

The Kuari Pass trek also known as Lord Curzon's Trail

The Kuari Pass trek also known as Lord Curzon’s Trail

Located at an altitude of 12516 ft, the Kuari Pass Trek is among the best treks in Uttarakhand. Named after its discoverer, Lord Curzon, this trail is perfect for beginners and seasoned trekkers. This 22 km short trail introduces you to the essence of trekking and the wonderful gifts of nature.

It is suitable for beginners, too, as the grade of difficulty ranges from easy to moderate. The trail moves from vast thick forests of rhododendrons and oaks to lush meadows and beautiful campsites. Both the campsites, Khulla and Chitrakantha, have jaw-dropping backdrops.

Dronagiri, Nandagiri, Neelkanth, Changbang, Mukut Parbat will take turns to greet you on your journey. Other trek highlights include Auli, Gurson Bugyal, Dhak village, Gulling Top, Tali Forest Base camp, etc. October to December and February to April are ideal times to visit this rugged terrain.

Four best treks in Himachal Pradesh

1. Hampta Pass Trek

Duration- 5 days

Hampta Pass is one of the best treks in Himachal Pradesh and is also suitable for beginners

Hampta Pass is one of the best treks in Himachal Pradesh and is also suitable for beginners

Located at the height of 14,010 ft. on the Pir Panjal range, Hampta Pass Trek is one of the best treks in Himachal Pradesh. This 28 km crossover trek takes you through the various shades of nature and explores the unknown.

The journey starts from the lush Kullu valley, and then moves further towards Lahaul and deserted Spiti to reach the Rohtang Pass. Hampta Pass falls in the middle of this route but leaves trekkers in awe of its alluring scenery and dynamic trail.

Forests, water streams, meadows, vast expanses of pure land, wildflowers, and rugged mountains; you name it, and the Hampta Pass trek has it. Other takeaways of this trek include Chandratal Lake, Sethan village, Hampta village, and wonderful campsites at Chika, Balu ka Ghera, Shea Goru, and Chatru.

You can go on this trek in Himalayan trek anytime between Mid-June to Mid-October. The difficulty level is easy to moderate. Beginners, as well as experienced trekkers, can enjoy it.

2. Bhrigu Lake Trek

Duration- 3 days

The Bhrigu Lake trek is regarded as one of the best treks in Himachal Pradesh for beginners

The Bhrigu Lake trek is regarded as one of the best treks in Himachal Pradesh for beginners

The Bhrigu Lake falls under the easy treks in Himachal, despite being a high-altitude lake standing at 14,010 ft. It is also regarded as one of the best lake treks in Himachal Pradesh, as it offers a splendid view of Dhauladhar and Pir Panjal ranges and peaks like Seven Sisters and Hanuman Tibba.

This 25 km trek comprises alpine meadows, thick forests, quaint hamlets, and staying nights at cozy campsites. If you visit Vashisth, you can also take a dip in its hot water spring. You cannot do this trek in the winter due to harsh weather. Stick to May to October, but try and avoid the monsoon season, as heavy landslides occur. It is an overall easy trek.

3. Pin Bhaba Pass Trek

Duration- 7 days

The Pin Bhaba Pass Trek - one of the best crossover treks in Himachal Pradesh

The Pin Bhaba Pass Trek – one of the best crossover treks in Himachal Pradesh

Located at an altitude of 16,100 ft, the Pin Bhaba Pass Trek is one of the most loved crossover treks in Himachal Pradesh. It connects the picturesque Bhaba valley with the deserted Pin valley.

The landscape in this trek changes every moment, but the Bhaba River flows throughout. It is a difficult trek as it requires trekkers to push their extremes while crossing river bridges and trek through screes, glaciers, and moraines.

Kafnu, Mulling, Kara, Pushtirang, and Mangrungse are some of the wonderful campsites that this trek offers, along with the stunning views of Hansbeshan Peak, Tari Khango, Pin Bhaba Pass, and Nimish Khango.

You witness a striking contrast of green and brown on this 112 km Himalayan trek that makes it an unforgettable experience. June to September is the best time to go on this Himalayan trek, as monsoons make this trail look like Switzerland.

4. Rupin pass trek

Duration- 8 days

The Rupin Pass Trek - a challenging Himalayan trek with mesmerizing views

The Rupin Pass Trek – a challenging Himalayan trek with mesmerizing views

The Rupin Pass has a surprising element in every nook and corner, a favorite among the crossover treks in Himachal Pradesh. The journey takes you from Dhaula in Uttarakhand to Sangla in Himachal, exposing two distinct cultures.

The variation in the landscape and the challenges that come with it make this 52 km trek difficult. Some highlights of this trek include the untamed Rupin River, Haldi Khad, Poku Devta Temple, and beautiful campsites like Suruwas Thatch and Upper Waterfall.

The summit also offers mesmerizing views of Charang Ghati and Kinnaur Kailash. The trek is open all year round but is ideal for visiting during summers (Mid-May to June) and post-monsoons (September to October).

Conclusion

This article covers India’s two most stunning trekking destinations – Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh. Whether you are a beginner, a seasoned trekker, or an expert, you can choose from our list of the best Himalayan treks. So, pack your bags and get ready to explore the mountains.

There are a ton of things to see among the best backpacking trails in the USA if you want something more than just hiking and camping. Let’s get down to it!

Northern California

Backpacking the Lost Coast Trails in Northern Calfornia

Backpacking the Lost Coast Trails in Northern Calfornia

There are millions of people who flock towards the pretty and breathtaking views of the Golden Coast every year when it gets chilly in other parts of the country. Most of these hotspots are South of the Bay Area.

Once you start heading up North, to the place where the Pacific Coast Highway breaks off from the coastline, you’ll start entering the Lost Coast Trails. This is right along with the state’s King Range National Conservation Area.

It can be considered some of the rockiest beach terrain around this area. This trip will be quite short, but it is quite a challenge for beginner backpackers.

You will need an overnight permit in order to go to this trail from the Bureau of Land Management. This will be available on Recreation.gov.

Las Vegas

Red Rock Canyon, just outside of Las Vegas

Red Rock Canyon, just outside of Las Vegas

Las Vegas is definitely a place that you would not think about when it comes to backpacking. The city is known for its nightlife and amazing casinos.

But did you know how much there is to do out there? If you want to get a bit adventurous, you could get las vegas atv tours and go through the desert on your own.

Apart from this, you can find some of the greatest backpacking trails in the USA near Las Vegas, one of them being the amazing rock formations at Red Rock Canyon.

You could surely drive down this 13-mile stretch but can also choose to soak in the experience fully on foot. You can hop onto the Greenlee trail that is approximately 3 miles long.

It has a ton of open space and is a generally moderate trail. Winter hikes are best here due to the road being open and on top of the Mesa, giving you a lot of sunshine.

They are exactly parallel to the canyons, giving you a breathtaking view while you hike up the trail. You can also look at Gardens of God for the most part of it.

If you love cloud-watching, be sure to take a blanket with you to lie down, and do not forget sunscreen if you do not want to come back burned.

Olympic National Park, Washington

Backpacking in Olympic National Park in Washington

Backpacking in Olympic National Park in Washington

This is positioned beautifully along most of the coastal region of Washington’s Olympic National Park. it is a long 20-mile trail that is perfect for people looking for an adventure.

It is quite ideal for people who have not backpacked before and offers scenic views of the seaside along the entire way. The entire way is mostly flat and is much like a long walk instead of a hike.

You will also find the weather to be quite pleasant most of the time. This actually has one of the lowest elevations as compared to most trails and will help you test your distance-per-day if you are new to this.

You can also camp along the trail on certain pre-established campgrounds that are set up. You do not need a permit to do this.

Central California

Backpacking near Lake Tahoe in Central Calfornia

Backpacking near Lake Tahoe in Central Calfornia

Near the southern end of California’s Lake Tahoe lied the Lake Aloha Trail. It looks like it is custom-built for most entry-level backpackers and will definitely give you a postcard-worthy view all along the way.

This hike will take you alongside a number of alpine lakes. You should be sure to take a slower pace while hitting those inclines so that you do not lose your stamina.

Diving into the clean waters of Lake Tahoe after a sweaty hike would be the perfect way to end this.

This area is home to some of the best backpacking trails in the USA, which is why it might be hard to find campgrounds that are not already taken. You can beat the crowd and plan one during the off-season for reservations.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Tennessee

Exploring the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Exploring the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of the most visited parks in the country. The Mount Sterling Loop trail is situated here and gives you an intermediate-level trip in order to reach the peak of the mountain in the park.

You can start in NC and cross through forests to reach Tennessee on your way. Be sure to follow the Big Creek to the top of Mount Sterling.

You’ll even see a fire tower that was built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the early 1930s.

This is the perfect place for getting full views of these mountains. This has an elevation gain of around 8,000+ and there are some sharp turns and climbs in this trail.

Death Valley National Park, California

Climbing above Desolation Canyon in Death Valley

Climbing above Desolation Canyon in Death Valley

The scenery looks like it has seriously just been pulled out of Mars. Hiking around this park is as intense as it is interesting.

The trail will take you through quite a stark terrain and you will definitely need a lot of planning on this trip. It is almost 30 miles long and is quite a challenge.

Remember to keep a lot of water with you since you won’t be finding any over here. You can also pack a water filter.

Backpacking can give you the sense of adventure that you have always been looking for. So choose a destination and start packing as soon as you can!