Situated at the base of Nanda Devi peak, India’s second highest peak; the Nanda Devi National Park is situated in the higher ranges of Himalaya in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand in North India. Designated as the World Heritage Site, the park has unique topography and supports several habitats, species and eco-systems.
The Nanda Devi basin was declared a sanctuary in1939. In the 1982, an area of 630.33 sq km was added and it was declared a national park, which now forms the core zone of Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve. The park was declared a World Heritage Site in the 1988 along with the Valley of Flowers.
Besides the Himalayan valleys and lush greenery, visitors can see animals including snow leopards, Himalayan black-bear, Himalayan musk deer, Himalayan tahr and many more.
The park is also an ideal place for bird watchers. About 100 species of birds have made the park their home. Birds including orange-flanked bush robin, Indian tree pipit, blue-fronted redstart are seen more often. The park is also home to several species of butterflies, 312 species of flowers including juniper and alpine vegetation.
The park is divided into two parts — Inner and Outer. The Upper Rishi Valley, often referred to as the Inner Sanctuary is fed by Changbang, North Rishi and North Nanda Devi glaciers. The Trisuli and Ramani glaciers are features of the Outer Sanctuary.
Trekking is the most popular activity in the national park. The trek begins from the Lata village to Dharasi (4250 mt) – the highest point of the region. In 1982, access to trekkers was banned to protect the biodiversity. However recently, tourists in small numbers are allowed to visit the park.
There are very few accommodation options near the national park. Visitors can choose to stay in the hotels at Joshimathor else at Badrinath. There are hardly any restaurants within the park. It is advisable to carry food hamper and water.
The best time to visit the national park is during the months of April and October. During these months, the park is not covered under snow.
BEST TIME TO VISIT BADRINATH
The average minimum and maximum temperature of Badrinath is as given below. The best time to visit Badrinath is also specified.