Nestled in the Parvati Valley in the Indian State of Himachal Pradesh, the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs are some of the most serene thermal pools in the world and are one of the most popular hiking destinations in the country. Located 13,050 feet above sea level, the idyllic hot springs promise a challenging journey filled with adventure and spiritual beauty.
Also known as the Kheerganga Hot Water Spring, this mythical thermal pool is a tranquil natural spring tucked away in a pristine corner of India and requires an approximately 8-mile hike to access. Along the way to the spring, visitors visit small rustic communities, religious landmarks, and even majestic waterfalls.
From where to start your intrepid hike to the natural mineral pool to the best places to stay and sites to see, this is everything you need to know before visiting Kheer Ganga, India.
History of Kheer Ganga, India
Kheer Ganga is a destination that boasts a serene setting of untouched nature. Many visitors that visit this idyllic corner of India testify to the region’s overall bliss and mythical nature. However, what many visitors to the springs don’t know is that the site actually holds a spiritual significance and even plays an important role in the Hindu and Sikh religions.
According to the local faith, Kheer Ganga was once home to the cave in which Lord Kartikeya resided after losing a race around the world to his brother Ganesh. It was within this region where Kartikeya was said to have engaged in his millennia-long meditation before Shiva and Parvati came to bring him home.
Out of love for her son, it is said that the goddess Parvati made kheer flow out of the mountain. And while lord Pashuram later stopped this flowing, what was left of the miracle is believed to be the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs.
Attractions Along the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs Trek
While the tranquil natural spring is the focal point of this idyllic corner of the country, the trail to the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs through the Parvati Valley is filled with many natural attractions, small rustic local communities, and even religious landmarks.
These are some of the top attractions visitors will explore along the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs Trail.
The Hot Water Spring
Much as it has been for centuries, the hot water spring is a popular pilgrimage site and is the most significant attraction in the Kheer Ganga region.
The hot springs are comprised of several natural thermal pools. However, one of these pools, in particular, is accredited with higher acclaim thanks to its whiter, more kheer-like coloring.
The Kheer Ganga Hot Springs is a year-round destination that receives a snow-covering in the winter and serves as a temporary town throughout the summer.
Regardless of when you choose to visit, the hot springs offer one of the most tranquil soaks in the world while providing breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains.
The journey to the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs starts from the base camp in Manikaran. Visitors can meet with fellow trekkers as they prepare for the 8-mile hike that lies before them.
While anticipation of visiting the springs leads many tourists to pass through town and begin their hike upon arrival, visitors are first encouraged to take some time to enjoy Manikaran’s local services.
With several small restaurants, shops, and accommodations operating within the town, the Kheer Ganga Base Camp is a fantastic spot to explore local crafts and cuisine. When ready, visitors can engage one of the shuttles leaving the town to Barshaini, where the hike to the springs officially begins.
About three miles into the hike to Kheer Ganga Hot Springs, visitors arrive at their first major milestone, the small village of Nakthan. While small, Nakthan is a great pit stop with a limited selection of eateries, homestays, and attractions.
Stopping in Nakthan Village offers hikers a quick respite from the rigorous path and a serene setting to admire the pristine countryside. Visitors are encouraged to take a break to enjoy lunch, a cold beverage, or even spend the night.
Visitors to the community should note that the iconic temple found within the town is fantastic for photoshoots but should not be touched by any foreigner for fear of angering the Devta that resides there.
Accommodations Options in Kheer Ganga, India
Tucked away in the pristine wildernesses of the Parvati Valley, visitors are hard-pressed to find any luxury resort or extensive hotel complexes servicing the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs.
Instead, hikers looking to spend the night by the springs will have to settle for a primitive campsite or a basic room at a rustic hotel in one of the small villages found in the region.
The best way to fully immerse in the tranquil setting of Parvati Valley is by spending the night in the natural environment at one of the many campsites that service the area. Before engaging on their trek, visitors can spend the night within a selection of campgrounds in Kalga Village of Manikaran, including the Eco Glamp Life and Parvati Adventure Camp.
At Kheer Ganga, trekkers have a massive selection of sites to stay in. These sites are typically booked through the tour operator you have arranged your trek through. Kheerganga Trek and Kheer Ganga Universal Camp are just some popular campsites in the area.
Hotels in Manikaran
Visitors seeking a little more comfortable throughout their stay in Parvati Valley can instead opt to tail-end their visit to the hot springs with a relaxing holiday in a rustic hotel in Manikaran. Offering a limited but diverse selection of hotels, the base camp community offers accommodations perfect for every kind of traveler.
With nightly rates starting at $6 per night, Perfect Paradise is a favorite hotel amongst budget travelers. Meanwhile, The BigRock Café offers a cozier bed and breakfast experience and is perfect for visitors seeking a more comfortable stay.
Getting to the Kheer Ganga, India
Tucked away in the lesser-visited Parvati Valley region of India, the Kheer Ganga Hot Springs can prove a difficult challenge to access. Still, there are several ways visitors can make the journey for those brave enough to make the venture.
The quickest way to access Kheer Ganga is by flying into Bhuntar Airport, the nearest airport to the start of the hike. From there, visitors can take a private taxi or public transport through the mountains to Kasol and onward to Manikaran. Unfortunately, Bhuntar Airport services only domestic flights, and international tourists must layover, most likely in Delhi.
From Manikaran, visitors then receive a shuttle slightly further along the road to Barshaini, at which point hikers will begin their moderate 8-mile hike to the spring.
- Address: Kheerganga, Near Barsheni , Kullu, India, Himachal Pradesh
- Phone: (+91) 94182 04666
- Admission: $25 (USD)
- Facebook Page: Kheer Ganga Hot Springs
- GPS Coordinates: 31.99246, 77.51298