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  • Harshita Kedia

Escape to the Winter Wonderland - Auli

Updated: Sep 9, 2021

From snow-covered peaks to wooden huts, Auli is not less than a perfect European village. It is encircled by coniferous and oak woods, with a panoramic view of the Himalayan peaks. The slopes are perfect for both expert skiers and novices. Auli has everything that an ideal tourist dreamed for like, Himalayan Views, Meadows, adventure activities, and much more.

Snow covered Valley
Photo by Amit Shaw on Unsplash

How to reach

By Air: The nearest airport to Auli is the Jolly Grant Airport, about 280 km. One can take a bus or a taxi from here to reach Auli.

By Rail: The Rishikesh Railway station, 250 km away is the nearest railway station to reach Auli.

By Road: Joshimath is the base point of Auli which is very well connected with all the major cities like Delhi, Dehradun, Rishikesh, etc. You can hire a taxi, bike, state own buses, or private buses to reach Joshimath. From Joshimath, you have to use a cable car or you can trek to reach Auli.

View of Auli
Photo by Aniket Mandish on Unsplash

Best time to visit

Auli can be visited throughout the year. But, if you want to experience snow-skiing, then December to February is the best time. The deep blue winter skies, clouds surrounding the hills, with the snowy meadows all around, simply awaken your senses and your soul.

However, if you want to get relief from the intense heat waves the best time to visit is from April to June. In summers, the weather remains pleasant and the snow-covered mountains turn to green meadows that offer a picturesque view of the surrounding.

Snow melting on mountains

Here are some experiences you do not want to miss out on while in Auli.

Read more about the travel experience from Auli in the blog written by Vargis Khan.

Relax at Chenab Lake

view of mountains around Chenab lake

Chenab lake is a lesser-known artificial crystalline lake, surrounded by the lush green forests of oak and deodar, coupled with a few river streams. It has a relaxing atmosphere and is the best place for serenity, still unexplored and untouched. The area is almost inaccessible by vehicles. The best way to explore this unexploited beauty is by trekking or setting a camp amidst the greenery, making it a perfect spot for adventure.

Visit Nanda Devi National Park

valley of flowers, Naina Devi National Park

Nanda Devi National Park is a biosphere reserve emplaced around the Nanda Devi peak. The park highlights an extraordinary assortment of widely varied flora alongside terrific presentations of nature. It gloats about the rich floral species like birch, juniper, fir, and different others that you can notice while visiting this quarter. It also has a wide fauna arrangement that incorporates panther, wild langur, earthy colored bear, Himalayan musk deer, and a few other remarkable avifauna networks. This land is a true fortune for you.

Cable-Car ride from Joshimath to Auli

cable car ride on snowy mountains

The ropeway from Joshimath to Auli, also known as Gondola, is one of the major attractions in Auli. It is the highest and longest ropeway in India covering a distance of 4 km in 15 - 20 mins. It offers magnificent and majestic views of the Himalayas. Moving at a speed of 3 meters per second, you can enjoy the view of snow-capped peaks in front and the oak forests and verdant green meadows below.

Explore Malari village

village in the mountains

Malari village, also known as the 'Mini Tibet of Uttarakhand' is a small village near the Indo - Tibetan border in Uttrakhand. The beauty of the mountains alongside the interesting Himalayan homes with their unique architecture in the slate roofing of old houses will leave you mesmerized. Surrounded by the snow-capped mountains, the Village is inhabited by the Indo-Mongolian tribes known as Bhotia. The valley of perfumes located near this village is home to many types of blossoms, all amounting to make for the most superb of smells.

Trek to Gorson Bugyal

Trek in snow-capped mountains

Gorson Bugyal is a beautiful lush meadow, an ideal trekking destination, surrounded by oak forests and high mountain peaks. It is a 3 km trek from Auli, also famous for skiing. The soft grass and the mesmerizing scenery make it perfect for camping, relax in the sun by day, and sleep under the stars by night. During winters the meadow is covered in thick layers of snow attracting tourists for a winter trek, although the spring season is considered the best time for trekking here for all the greenery and scenic view it offers.

Climb up Trishul Peak

Lush green valley below the snow capped peaks

Trishul is a group of three Himalayan mountain peaks that are in the shape of Trident, a weapon of Lord Shiva. It is one of the most famous and challenging climbs for a trekking enthusiast, only meant for experienced trekkers and not beginners. Trishul is also popular for providing skiing slopes and is among one of the few places where skiing is practiced at a professional level. This place is also known for having the Nanda Devi national park and Roopkund, a spiritual lake at its foot.

Skiing in Auli

skiing in auli

Skiing right through the snow-covered forests of the Himalayan range feels highly thrilling. Skiing is one of the foremost activities in Auli. The extensive snow blankets, and high slopes that rise to an altitude of 3 kilometers along with the strong winds lift the thrill quotient of skiing in Auli. This place is also considered as one of the world’s best skiing destinations in the world and one of the best things to do in Auli.

Stroll around Chattrakund Lake

view of valley around chattrakund lake

Chattrakund Lake is located at a distance of about 4 kilometers from Auli in the middle of a jungle and a small sweet water lake that reflects the blue sky on sunny days. It looks astoundingly beautiful. This lake is easily reachable by road and you can spend hours dozing around it.

Kuari pass trek

Top of Kuari Pass trek

Kuari pass has been attracting thousands of tourists from all over the country and the credit goes to its unparalleled beauty. It is surrounded by mesmerizing views of snow-capped mountains. The trek begins from Joshimath, giving you jaw-dropping views of mountains and forests in between, and ends at the Kuari pass.

Explore the religious spots

vanshinarayan temple

Like any other city in Uttarakhand, Auli has a few religious spots one can visit to experience spirituality and tranquility. Some of these temples are Bhavisya Badri, Vridh Badri, and the Narsingh temple. Devotees of Lord Vishnu, visit these temples every year. The peaceful atmosphere and the location of the temples attract many tourists. You should definitely visit these small but beautiful temples.

Few travel tips for Auli:

  • No matter what’s the season, always keep some woolen clothes, Good trekking shoes, and an umbrella with you.

  • Carry some basic medicines like for flu, headache, upset stomach, fever, etc with you.

  • There are no banks or ATMs in Auli. So, do not depend on credit or debit cards and withdraw plenty of cash to last for a few days in Auli.

  • The nearest petrol pump and mechanic is available in Joshimath only. Make sure to fill up the tank before leaving for Auli.

Planning a trip to Auli, visit The Tarzan Way!

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