Best MonthsAll year
Traveller TypesFriends, Families
Rank2 out of 13 attractions in Chamoli
Also known as the Gurudwara Henkunt Sahib, this is the highest gurudwara in the world. It is on the shores of the Hemkund lake at an altitude of over 14000 ft above sea level. The water of this lake is always freezing and equally chilly is the wind here. this is a beautifully maintained gurudwara where they serve maggi and tea as part of the langar continuously. Also, the sweet halwa prasad of here is very tasty. The peaceful ambience has a magical effect on everyone. To reach this place you will have to keep trekking and then climb a number of stone stairs. The journey may seem to be tiresome but the fabulous experience will compensate for all the difficulty you have had taken to reach here.
Places to stay near Hemkund Sahib
Reviews of Hemkund Sahib • 25
Upon reaching there i thought this trek was difficult to reach Hemkund but then i see, people taking dips in the freezing glacier water of the hemkund lake this lake is surrounded by 7 different mountains and the water is just crystal clearAb jab wapas ja raha thee everything became clear in sense pehla because of the rain and the fog I couldn't see anything but now you can see the whole way which was amazing.After reaching back to our hotel we all winded up the night with a late night camp fire where we played antakshari all night and I thought you know if you are going to these places just to enjoy nature which is totally cool do that but for me personally it's 10 times better if you do that with people that you genuinely Ike hanging out with. That for me makes a trip special not just good or amazing but special.
Ghangharia - Hemkund Sahib.With a much difficult 6 km long trek waiting for me I got myself ready by 6 am. The trek to Shri Hemkund Sahib is no easy. You raise your altitude by 1500 meters on foot from 3050 mts at Ghangharia to 4600 mts at Hemkund. The steep path combined by yesterday's sore feet made it more challenging. But to my surprise I did not feel even a bit of it as through out the way you see many Sikh elderly people paving their way to the top which gives you all the required boost. I was more inspired by two little sardarjis aged around 7 who were chanting 'Satnam Waheguru' and advancing like they have attained super powers.      On the way you get to have the first sight of the rare Brahma Kamal, the mythical flower whose numerous references exists in Hindu mythology. One such says that Lord Brahma was born out of it. They say that this flower blooms once 14 years and that too for few hours between the dusk and the dawn, lucky to have sighted some of them.      With strained feet and heavy breath you once feel like giving up the trek but the almighty wanting you to visit him, imparts sudden burst of power into you and you finally make it to the top. It was 11 am by the time I reached. Just that image of Gurudwara Hemkund Sahib with the serene lake Hemkund by its side, surrounded by the snow capped mountains takes your breath away for a moment. I took a dip in the chilling Hemkund lake and it took all my tiredness away.  The water in the lake comes from a glacier near by which eventually flows out to form the Lakshman Ganga (a tributary of the river Ganga). At 15,000 feet the clouds cover the whole place every few minutes and recede away just like in a dream land. There are two Ardas (prayers) daily at 10:30 am & 12:30 pm. Sitting inside and listening to them makes you feel like you've got the true meaning of life. As the clock ticked 2pm, it was time to start the return to Ghangharia because it would take 3 hours to get back. The return journey being more scenic than the onward as you get to see some breath taking views from 15,000 feet and as the evening approaches the clouds get more dense and mist all around. It was 5 pm by the time I reached Ghangharia. Having already checked out of my hotel earlier the day, I stayed for that night at the Gurudwara's accomodation and felt previlaged to be housed there.PS: The accomodation and food in the Gurudwara at Ghangharia is free of cost. Its at your will to donate what ever you feel like.
Ghangria to Hemkund SahibThe next morning we left early by 6.40AM as we had a 4000 feet climb to do in 6km! How I did it, is still a mystery to me. The sister and I started slow and maintained a consistent pace, but we somehow happened to be the only 2 girls walking I guess as many of them recognized us because we got a lot of comments ranging from -You look so tired, take a mule.Your voice sounds so dead, rest, pleaseYou two were walking up so slow, now you are walking down so slow too, I've noticedHere are some toffees, here take them allOnly 10 more minutes, you've almost made it (we heard that for 40 minutes before the peak)Don't leave each other, come together.Yes, so many comments from everyone but not one from our trek leader. He was probably the only one confident that we would make it!!
Oh my god!!!!!!!!Perhaps; no really the trek to Hemkund sahib,the 6km stretch(let not the distance fool you) the most difficult part of the whole sojourn.It is going to test you physically but more mentally. The gradient is continuously moving in upward direction making you feel sometimes jaded,an never ending journey to finish.But,that's the thrill for which we go to mountains to push ourselves little bit harder.Shri Hemkunt Sahib is an important pilgrimage destination for Hindus and Sikhs. Hemkund is the breathtaking Lokpal lake located at an altitude of 4329 m from the sea level.Sikhs consider this as a scared region with one of the famous Sikh Gurudwara placed in the heart of the region. A Hindu shrine dedicated to mythological hero Lakshmana is attractive for Hindu Pilgrims. This temple is built on the banks of Hemkund.I started my trek@0530 am so that I could descend before 0200 pm owing to scarcity of Oxygen as day progresses. Reached Hemkund Sahib @ 1000 am totally exhausted.They were serving hot tea and khichdi which restore my energy to some extent.It was very cold and drizzling but still took out my camera and captured some precious moments.If you are not comfortable to walk,mules/pony are available with a cost of 1300/- for to-fro journey.
Hemkund Sahib is the highest gurudwara in the world at 15,200 ft!! Beating the altitude of some nature marvels like spiti valley and Leh Ladakh! It is 7 kms from Ghangariya, the way is well paved and distinct with mules and porters available to carry you in case you dont wish to climb. Even though 7km may not sound much, you are in for a ride as it is quite steep! While climbing your way up, you will experience some of the most spectacular visual treats! (Il let the photos do the talking!) Upon reaching, next to gurduwara there is Sri Sarovar Sahib which is a breathtaking, spell bounding lake which will gave other marvels like Bhrigu lake a run for their money! If you are bold enough (like me) take a dip in the freereezing water of sarovar sahib which is sure to freeze your soul within 3 seconds. You will not feel cold after, its my promise. Start descending by 12 pm as you dont want to butt heads with the weather!
Day 5: Hemkund Sahib
On 16th September, 2017, we were ready for the most difficult trek with very steep and slippery path to reach Hemkund Sahib (4632 m altitude, 6km per way). It is always suggested to reach back by 3:00 PM after which it’s not safe owing to animals in the wild. To test the patience and zeal, god of rain, Indra, bestowed us with its most powerful tool i.e. rain making the roads as slippery as slimy eel and temperature 7 degree Celsius. Though mules were available but we opted to trek cherishing the pleasant weather, snowcapped mountains covered with clouds. On the way you will get many places to relax and eat and continue the journey with more enthusiasm. Low voice of Gurbani echoing all around and people chanting “Wahe Guruji ka Khalsa, Wahe Guruji ki Fateh” gave us the divine power to reach the Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara.We offered prayers and took a dip in the sacred holy kund, listened Gurbani which starts at 10:30 AM and then in the afternoon. The best thing was the “langar” after so tiredsome and protracted journey. While going back, we were more cautious due to slippery and steep track. We were constantly praying if someone can drop us to our Hotel but knew- we are our best helpers.
Another great morning, it was 5 o clock and I was crawling on my bed and was hoping that my knee must have got fine. I got up from my bed. Nd surprisingly my knee was not hurting Me much. We had to left early as we super six planned to go by trek. We had our power packed breakfast and went to go on with some quick photos with Bharat bhai, Abhinav, Anshul and Amit. Our group members wished us and we stepped ahead for our journey. I was damn excited for Sri Hemkund Saheb. Upto chk post v six were together. But due to so many mules (Khachchar) going in all directions, we all were dispersed. Abhinav and Shrijal went ahead. Me and caring uncle were together. Priya and Chaitanya were far behind. We were enjoying nature’s walk with our past trek stories and it was so exciting that my knee pain was lost somewhere in those mountains. Route towards Hemkund sahib was little rocky, but steep and I must say it was Little exhausting for beginners, but level of difficulty was easy. After walking for about an hour, we found that our other group members were coming and within fraction of minutes they all went ahead of us….. How..??? They were conducting their trek on mules (They felt it quite difficult to trek). After that all of a sudden, I loosed my consciousness, Sunil uncle held me and taught me what to do when such situation arise, wen u r alone in mountain, when u feel unconscious, when u feel no energy, etc that I should put both my hands on back side of my head. nd put the head down while making position of lower squat. I had chocolate, I regained my energy (Phewwwww) and that’s the beauty of trek that you learn to survive in different kinds of environment. We once agan continued our journey onwards where we found a Hotel (Dhaba) where Ajay uncle was having snacks. He gave us chocolates , took a break and after five minutes we began our journey. As we were gaining altitude we started consuming more energy. We were walking through rain clouds, thin air all the way up, drizzling rains, freezing temperatures which could have made our journey difficult but as a matter of fact we all just enjoyed it. Suddenly the lost pain in mountains found me and started giving me a bearable pain. I thought of taking break. But Sunil uncle encouraged me to not cool my body temperature by taking a break which is many a times reason for body freezing. Hence we decided to lower our speed but no stopping. Then on the way we met Kaalden a hardcore Tibetan mountaineer, He gave his knee pad to me and helped me to sooth my pain. Then we slowly walk ahead and twice we took shortcuts. But I was not able to make higher climbs, so we just went ahead with normal route. Meanwhile we found it for which I was dying to come to Hemkund - Snow Filled Glaciers. (Yippppieeeee ) I was so amazed that I don’t have words to express my happiness . We both went ahead, saw the glacier for the first time in my life and that’s when I realized that trekking was part of my life and no matter what happens, where I am or where I will be, I will never stop to do treks in my life. We spent some quality time and then we went ahead to continue our journey. Our breaths got little heavier as we were gaining height. We decided not to talk. After crossing river we found 2 ways one by stairs and one by normal hiking route. As instructed by our director we were supposed to go by normal route even though it is longer one. We started ascending, Found very beautiful flowers on the way (Complete Refreshments) We found BrahmKamals (Flower) on the way which is only found at high altitude regions. I was feeling that chilling wind. And sound of gurbani from gurudwara. we asked from one sardarji how far it is he told us 2kms to go. After walking half hour we came to know from another sardarji that still 2kms is left. We kept our patience and went ahead. Finally we saw group of pilgrims who told us to finish as we had already reached near end point. Then we saw marking board showing Hemkund 0 km. We were on the 7th cloud of the 7th Sky when we saw that board (Sigh of Relief) We were at about 15,200 ft above sea levels. It took us 4 hours to reach Hemkund. Drizzling rain was there and We went towards langar and reunited with our group members. They welcomed us. We had a refreshing hot cup of tea which was very much needed at that point. It must be approx. two degrees freezing temperature. After having tea we went to take blessings in Sri Hemkund sahib gurudwara which is highest Gurudwara (known) all around the globe*. It is star shaped gurudwara and is made up of marbles situated at bank of crystal clear lake which is a source of Lakshman ganga. It is as cold as snow. Many of us jumped in there and as soon as I jumped, I understood that somethings are not to be done in such weather (Hahahhahhaha). I was freezing from top to bottom. (Not my cup of Tea) This gurudwara is open only for 5 months after that it is filled with snow. There is one Laxman mandir too. We cought with cold and then we went up at darbaar where we got blankets (kambal) and we stayed there for 15mins. At around 2 o clock we started getting down. Due to such cold temperatures my knee started paining badly. I again geared up my knee pad. As I was coming down, I could not stop thinking about the langar the khichdi, its delicious taste and started descending. The view was quite clear because Fog had gone and we could see the surrounding There were many waterfalls And there was a separate way towards brahmKamals. I did not followed that root due to my knee injury. I went down and waited for my co group members. It was fun moment when I saw Ajay uncle with umbrella cap. And together we started our journey. My knee pain worsened after half an hour of walking (I felt that every time I took a step, somebody was pinching my knee with knife but that pain was nothing as compared to the joy that the place was giving me). We all stopped at nearest dhaba. Thankfully Jaynish is a physio therapist who gave me quick treatment. And then psychologically handled me which led to increase in my speed. Finally we reached at base village.at about 6.30 p.m and another great journey ended (). I had my diiner and went straight to the bed at 10 o clock.
We woke up very early that day and got ready to start for Hemkund by 6.15 am. The weather was quite clear as well since morning. As we started our climb to Hemkund Sahib, we got a very clear view of the Neelkanth glacier. The climb was mostly uneventful as the whole concentration was to keep the breathing rhythm constant and keep climbing steadily. Halfway through we started hearing the gurbani from Hemkund Sahib and it encouraged us to keep going. We had a pretty good speed and reached Hemkund sahib around 10.30. Just a few meters before that we spotted the beautiful brahma kamals blooming on the way, as well as many other flowers . But the best view was yet to come. Since it was a clear weather when we reached, we were welcomed with a grand view of the Hemkund lake with all the 7 peaks. Now it was time to take a dip, Abhisek (my husband) went ahead and had a fun dip. After that we girls decided to try our luck, but found out that for girls the dip is in a closed area and when we went inside it was very dark and kind of felt like a dungeon, so decide not a take a full dip, but came outside and dipped our feet and washed out face and hands. Then went inside the Gurudwara for darshan. It was a very cosy place, and the Gurbani was food for the soul. After spending some time inside, we came out and went for the langar. The piping hot tea and khichdi was delicious. Once done with the food, we went to the Lokpal Lakshman temple, Beside the temple , the lake side was desolated. We sat there and enjoyed the view of the lake for about hour and half. The clouds had started playing hide and seek with the peaks. The atmosphere was very calm, soothing and serene, and it reflected within us as well. It was a beautiful experience.
We were tired so we got up late a bit today, a lazy morning had breakfast and we were ready to our next destination.It was around 11:30 am when we started our journey of 6Km to Hemkund sahib.In between the journey we got to know that we were very late as Gurudwara will be closed around 2:00 pm. But we were pretty sure that we can make it and as we have started the journey we can not move back, we decided to finish our journey.As it was raining there that day we could not move fast and trek was also not that easy it was steep and moderate. In last one Km we took stairs to reach Gurudwara.We were very tired and it was 3:10 pm already.We requested the manager there to open gurudwara, he was very kind he just asked that where you are coming from and he opened the doors of gurudwara for us.It was amazing feeling that there was just four people there in this spiritual place and we were managed to do that after so much negativity in the journey.We spent some time there, clicked some photos, took khichdi and chai from Hemkund sahib gurudwara and started back to Ghangaria.
Day 4: Ghangaria to Hemkund SahibThis was a day for Hemkund Sahib, important pilgrimage for Sikhs. Reaching Hemkund sahib was little tough. The walk is all uphill for about 6km and can test your physical fitness. So,be patient and keep walking.On the route you get a faraway view of Ghangaria. The devotees offered us prasads, which the hungry we gladly accepted! We saw brahma kamal (rare flower )only on the route to Hemkund Sahib! So it is not that just the valley has flowers, flowers are everywhere. I must say It was differently very beautiful place. Full cloudy weather and hot Prasad made us feel like we were in heaven. No doubt why people visit this place every year. The beauty of the high altitude lake was stunning. There is a temple devoted to Lord Lakshman next to the gurudwara.
I opted to trek, along with around 5 more people, while most of the team went for ponies. We started off earlier than the others, given that it would take us longer to get there on foot. The route was well marked out, and you could hear the kirtan from a long way down.The ponies caught up with us just a few feet away from the entry, and the whole group entered almost together.We were blessed with a stunning view of the Hemkund Sahib lake and the surrounding mountains, all starkly painted in black and white. The more adventurous of our group decided to take a dip in the lake, while I satisfied myself by wetting my toes.
Day 5: excursion to Hemkund on the next day.
Hemkund Sarovar is a glacial lake just beyond the Gurudwara, believed to have healing properties. And it lay placid and mist-kissed against a mountainous backdrop. It was customary to complete the journey by taking a dip in the freezing water. We were advised against it, but I’d been thinking about it all morning. Having come this far, it didn’t feel right to leave without it. Sweaty and hot from the climb, I stripped down to my boxers. The cold air clawed at my skin and chilled my bones. It was now or never. Holding on to the chain, I lowered myself into the water feet first. The water felt like stepping on nails. I held my breath and went under as I counted to three. I felt as though I was stabbed by a million knives all at once, forcing the air from my lungs. I pulled myself up out of the water and bolted to where my clothes lay. My feet were numb and I trembled from head to toe.
Situated at 4,300m elevation in Uttarakhand, Hemkund Sahib is a Sikh pilgrimage site. The 3 day trek to Hemkund Sahib starts from Govind Ghat, about 24Kms from the Gurdwara. It can be completed in a day as well, thanks to the Deccan helicopter service from Govind Ghat to Govind Dham which charges around Rs. 6000 for round trip. The remaining 6 Kms from Govind Dham to Hemkund Sahib can be covered on foot or on mules. It's a steep climb on foot from 9000ft to 15000ft in 6kms, so we took the mules on our way up and walked on our way back to Govind Dham.
You could see from the map that the roads to Valley of flowers and Hemkund Sahib diverge from the base camp. So we went Hemkund the nest day. Though the distance for that is merely 7 km, it took us 6 complete hours! A challenging Road!It was showering heavily for 2 days straight now. Heck, we couldn't use our cameras then! Although we were fortunate to witness the presence to the most wonderful flora I've ever seen, we couldn't snap'em! When you are trekking to Hemkund Sahib please note that you cannot stay at Hemkund Sahib after 2 PM because weather changes very rapidly here.
Sri Hemkunt Sahib TrekSri Hemkunt Sahib, is a 6 Km long trek from Ghangaria. In 6 Km only you incline from 10,000 ft to 15,000 ft. This is the most difficult trek here as you are always on an inclined path.Reaching Hemkunt Sahib from Ghangaria would take 4 hours on foot and 2.5 hours if you hire a mule. The mule would cost around 500 INR.Those who have trouble in breathing have to take extra precautions.The temperature at the Gurudwara gets very low so be properly covered all times.Trekking down back from Hemkunt Sahib is easy and if you wish to hire a mule pay not more than 400 INR on return.TIPS* Take camphor along just in case of heavy breathing.* Check the weather and wear suitable jackets or sweaters.* Carry a rainshield along.* Don't forget the trekking pole.
Day 3:Trekking from Ghaghariya to Hemkundh Sahib cumulative distance is 6Km but it will take 3-4 hrs due to steep ascend, on the way you will find Bharam Kamal about 14,000 feet elevation. Hemkund Sahib is at 15,200 feet, so keep hydrated on the way. Sri Hemkund sahib also called as Lokpal by local people, surrounded by seven mountains and a lake in the middle, adjacent to it is a Lakshman mandir which has historical importance. Whole place combined together give you give you harmony and peace in mind. Hemkund Sahib closes at 2:00 PM so be sure that you will reach before time. In Gurudwara you will get langar to eat, for descend back to Ghaghariya it will take 2 hours max.
I reached Sri Hemkunt Sahib by 11:30, and as I entered I saw people having hot cups of tea. I met the Ludhiana friends there and they asked me if I was going to take the dip. I had no clue what they were talking of, but as I moved around the place I saw the holy pond where other Sikhs were dipping in. I stood there for 10 minutes and watched them go in, everybody jumped out as soon as they entered.At 15,200 feet, in 8 degree cold, dipping in icy water was daunting but was luring too and I had unlimited free cups of tea to warm myself up waiting after the dip.So, I jumped in the pond, made three dips, came out, dressed again, rushed to the food hall, had a warm cup of tea and just kept it holding for 5 minutes and then had the first sip of ultimate satiation. Mixed feelings ran up my nerves, I was extremely cold but happy, tired but active and atheist but was feeling divine to be there.
Sikh pilgrimage at 14000 feet above sea level offers a whole lot experience of natural beauty complemented with the feeling of serene. It is a constant 6 km ascend from Ghangaria.
A Gurudwara at that height. Mind blowing amazing piece of work. The trek is bit steep but thrilling. The spirit of people on their pilgrimage keeps the adrenaline level high. The power for the temple is generated by generator and a small hydro plant from the waterfall. Look out for the might BhramaKamal. You will find a lot shops on the way to Hemkund, unlike VoF u find none.
Blend of Spirituality and Divine Beauty Set amidst towering snow-capped mountains and lying beside a lake of pristine blue water, the Sikh shrine of Sri Hemkunt Sahib looks, even to the not-particularly-pious, a place of almost unbelievable beauty and peace. Seven peaks - known as the Sapt Sring- surround the shrine, looming over lush green pastures. The lake’s rocky shores are covered with snow through most of the year, but when the snows melt, the almost mythical yellow-green flower known as the Brahma Kamal, the `Lotus of the Gods’, blooms amidst the rocks. It’s a place of a rather wild and untamed beauty- and one of Sikhism’s most important shrines. Sri Hemkunt Sahib is accessible only in the summer, between June and October. The rest of the year, heavy snows make passage impossible, and usually block off the trail leading up to the shrine.
Its one of the most sacred places of worship for the Sikhs. The distance is just 6 kilometres from the village of Ghangaria but its a very steep climb and the altitude changes drastically. The sarovar at the lake is also according to Hindu mythology where Laxman transformed homself into water and hence there is a Laxman temple also here.