Barot valley – hidden Jewel in the Himalayas.
This is travel story about my trip to mesmerizing Barot valley in Himachal PradeshRahul sharma
Barot Valley is one of the most peaceful and beautiful valley in Himachal Pradesh. Barot lies on the bank of river Uhl at a distance of 66 km from Mandi district and at a distance of 40 km from Jogindernagar (closest railway station).
I have been traveling in the Himalayas for the past 5-6 years trying to witness every bit of God's creation. When I first traveled to Parvati valley I was amazed by the beauty and especially the peace which Parvati valley offered. Parvati valley then was one of my favorite solo travel destinations but with time and advent of social media, Parvati valley lost its charm. So now once again I started my journey to discover something raw and unique in the land of god’s Himachal Pradesh
My trip to Barot
I believe that trips which are not planned are the best one and so was this. I was in Sundernagar for some work of mine. Sundernagar is a very small town with not many things to do around and if you stay here longer you are going to get bored and that is never my cup of tea.
We started our journey from Sundernagar and after a long and tiring ride, we finally reached a place from where the road went to Barot. The road to Barot was not in that good condition but the view we witnessed can’t be delineated in words. The wide valley’s covered with tall deodar trees and the road less traveled made my hear pound widely as I have never ever witnessed such beauty in my life. After an hour’s drive, we reached a small village called Tikkan where we shot few photographs and then finally headed toward our ultimate destination Barot. The first sight of the village was mesmerizing, I just parked my bike and started walking on the bed of dried leaves which created the rustle every time we took steps. It was a lovely scenery, Uhl river reflected the tall deodar trees creating a picturesque scene of some Bollywood song location.
The village seemed rich in nature and with fairly small population, we found people happy and smiling with no worries at all. We stayed there for 2 days exploring the village. The best part I liked about the place was that people were really helpful. One thing which I love in Himachal Pradesh is to stay in forest or PWD rest houses as they are always located in the best possible location of that place. So I tried it here as well but maybe my bad luck all the guest houses were booked already. Then I walked and looked for the home stays nearby and luckily I found many. I stayed there for 2 days and tried to explore every bit of the village.
Step by step guide to Barot
Walk around the village
Walking is one of the best options to explore this village. Barot is also referred to as a resting point of Kullu – Jogindernagar trekking route and a starting point of trails like Bara Bangal, Palampur, and Billing. These all treks pass through dense forests of tall Deodar and Chile trees and were once the busiest shepherd routes of local people around Kangra valley. So if you are an adventure enthusiast and love trekking then Barot is a perfect location for you to feel the real and pure essence of Himalayas.
Barot is also called as heaven for anglers in Himachal Pradesh. Trout fishing is one of the common activities performed by the people in clear blue water of Uhl River. So if you ever plan a trip to Barot and wanted to try fishing then do save this contact number (01905-235141) Fee of 100rs is charged per day.
Barot is a very small place with one or two hotels. So if you are planning a trip to Barot any sooner don’t go for online booking instead visit the place and then ask for the stay. If you ask me I would suggest you to first enquire for the various government guesthouses. When I last asked the price the caretaker told me around 320 rs per room and it was a wooden forest guest house so you can imagine how cheap the place is.
Homestays in Barot
Homestays are also a great option if you love to travel to such offbeat destinations.
Sachin Homestay: This was the guest house where I stayed and really loved the place. The hospitality was warm and the owner was really helpful. I have even clicked few photographs of Sachin homestay.
Hira Guest House: Just next to Sachin guest house is the Hira guest house which is also a great option in case you don’t like the first one
Best time to visit
The best time to visit Barot is around the May – June due to the pleasant climate and temperature which ranges around 17-27 degree. But the only disadvantage during this time are the high prices of rooms or crowd. So if you are looking for the time with fewer crowds and more peace than September and April are probably the best time.
How to reach
By Air: Nearest airport to Barot is in Gaggal (Dharamshala). This airport is at a distance of 90km from Barot. So the best option is to take a flight to Gaggal and then take a cab or taxi to Barot which will not take more than 3-4 hours.
By Train: Jogindernagar is the nearest railway station and is connected by the narrow gauge railway line to Pathankot. Further Pathankot can be reached by various major stations in India. Once you reach Jogindernagar then from here either you can book a cab or take a bus to Barot.
By Road: The most common method and probably the best method to reach Barot is by road. Barot is at a distance of 295 km from Chandigarh. You can drive either by Chandigarh> Bilaspur> Sundernagar> Mandi> Barot or if you are coming from Pathankot or Punjab you can take the route Pathankot>Shahpur>Kangra> Palampur>Jogindernagar> Barot.
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