Tirthan valley is situated beside the Tirthan river in Himachal Pradesh. The valley is located In the tehsil of Banjar in the Kullu district of Himachal Pradesh. It lies on the route from Kullu to Shimla going over the jalori pass.
Tirthan valley is situated at an elevation of 1600 m and is a gateway to the Himalayan National Park, home to exotic flora and fauna. The valley is named after the Tirthan river that flows through it. The Banjar Or Tirthan valley is also known as Jibhi. Jibhi and Gushaini are the most attractive tourist spots in the valley beside the Tirthan River.
How to get to Tirthan from Delhi?
The closest airport to Tirthan valley is Bhuntar also known as Kullu-Mandi which is 2 hours away from Tirthan Valley. There are flights from Delhi to Bhuntar and one can take a taxi from the airport to reach the valley. It takes 2 hours to reach Tirthan valley from the airport.
The nearest railway station to Tirthan is Chandigarh, Shimla, and Pathankot which is quite remote from Tirthan. However, you can take a taxi from there and reach your destination.
Several bus services can lead you to Manali. Get off at Aut and from there you can take a taxi to reach the location.
A car or taxi ride is a day-long drive but gives you relief from changing vehicles. The route to Tirthan is along the Manali highway via Chandigarh. Turn off the NH21 at Aut, cross the Sanj river and drive along the Tirthan river. Take a turn one kilometer before you reach Banjar and you are in the majestic Tirthan Valley.
There are alternative routes too: via Shimla, a bit dangerous, and via the Kangra valley.
Tirthan valley weather
Due to its high elevation, the weather in Tirthan Valley remains pleasant for most of the year.
Winters start in November and last in March. Winters are frigid with temperatures dropping below zero at night. December and February receive ample snowfall.
Spring arrives in late March and welcomes tourists to the region. April, May, and June have moderate temperatures.
The monsoon begins in July and stays till September. The valley receives ample amounts of rainfall each year. Rainfall sometimes triggers landslides and roadblocks. Although monsoon comes with its dangers, the bright side is that it brings the Valley to life with blooming flora and fauna.
Autumn sets in October and the leaves start turning dull. The weather gradually shifts to cold and chilly temperatures making preparations for winter chills to set in.
Places to visit in Tirthan valley
There are many places to visit in Tirthan Valley. Here’s a list of must-visit locations in the region:
1. Great Himalayan National Park
The great Himalayan national park encompasses the area including Tirthan valley, saying, nal and Parvati. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site established in 1984. This is situated at an altitude of 1500 to 6000 meters. It hosts 375 species of fauna and 181 species of birds.
2. Jalori Pass
Jalori pass, also known as jalori jat, is located at a high altitude of 10,800 feet. The road to the top is narrow and steep and is a thrilling experience for adventure seekers.
3. Sirolsar Lake
Sirolsar lake is a small body of water located 5 km away from jalori pass. It’s enchanting and splendid in natural glamour. The temple of ‘budhi nagin’ is situated right next to it which makes it mystical too.
4. Raghupur Fort
Raghupur fort is 3 kilometers walk from jalori pass and stands in ruins currently. You walk through mountains and forests.
5. Shringa Rishi Temple
Shringa rishi temple is dedicated to shringa rishi who is the most revered deity of Banjar valley. It’s a 3 tiered temple that provides an amazing view of the valley. The temple is made of wood from the inside and the deities are kept on the top floor.
6. Chehni Kothi
Chehni Kothi is a small village popular for its tall tower-like structure believed to be built in the 17th century in the traditional local architecture of Himachal. Originally, Chehni Kothi was a 7-tier tower but it got damaged and the topmost two tiers fell off.
What to do in Tirthan valley?
There are so many activities to do in Tirthan that it makes you realize that there are limits to what I can do in a limited period. There are avenues for several activities in Tirthan valley like trekking, fishing, camping, rock climbing, bird watching, sightseeing, and river crossing.