Spare some time and imagine a place, high up in the mountains away from all the hustle-bustle of the cities, stranded yet full of life, where heaven itself has descended to form spectacular sights that will make you scream “Que elegante!” at the top of your lungs. Seems unreal but yes, such a place exists and is named Hemis national park .
Situated right in the middle of the snowcapped mountain ranges of Ladakh is this spectacular Hemis high altitude national park, a perfect place for all the animal lovers out there! Founded in 1981, this park grew in size in 1988 and became what we see it today. The wonderful sights against the backdrop of lofty mountains as well as the animals in their natural habitats are delightful and beyond fascinating and will make every effort worth it!
Besides the fauna, uniquely fascinating floras are abundant in this Ladakh national park, giving you a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
The Hemis high altitude national park is situated in the union territory of Ladakh and spans an area of about 4,400 Km², making it a huge place for an amazing adventure in the wild. This place is 55Km from Leh and is bordered by the swiftly flowing Indus river and the magnificent Zanskar range.
How to reach Hemis national park:
Since this national park in Ladakh is situated in the middle of the mountains, roads are the best way to reach this place, although flights and trains can be used at the beginning part of the journey.
- Hemis national park by air:
The closest airport to this Ladakh national park is the Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport in Leh. It takes about 45 mins to reach from Srinagar via planes. You can also take flights from airports like Delhi, Chandigarh, etc.
Srinagar-Leh: 45 mins
Jammu-Leh: 50 mins
Chandigarh-Leh: 1 hr 10 mins
Delhi-Leh: 1 hr 10 mins
- Hemis national park by train:
You cannot reach Hemis national park directly on a train. Although, you can cover a part of your journey by train.
The nearest station from this place is Jammu Tawi, 700 Km from Ladakh. After which, you can take a bus or a cab to reach this beautiful national park in Ladakh.
- Hemis national park by road:
You can travel to Hemis high altitude national park via road and since it’s the only connection, the roads are pretty well maintained. Moreover, the roads to this Ladakh national park are lined by the mountains and valleys which by default makes it an option worth taking.
You can enjoy the view of the rugged chain of mountains throughout the whole length of the road.
Leh to Hemis national park: 1 hr 3 mins (50km)
Srinagar to Hemis national park: 9 hr 59 mins (409km)
Manali to Hemis national park: 12hr 48 min (478km)
Jammu to Hemis national park: 15 hr 59 mins (668km)
Why visiting Hemis national park will be an unforgettable adventure:
Hemis national park is famous for a lot of reasons. Apart from the fact that this national park in Ladakh holds a plethora of animal and bird species, the park is a must-go because of the serene atmosphere and the fabulous views that it provides; it will be a treat to your eyes. Its elegance and superiority made Hemis national park into the UPSC syllabus, one of the most prestigious exams in India.
Tourists often come to this Ladakh national park to experience the solitude that this place provides that will calm your mind and soothe your soul. Moreover, Hemis national park has its unique specialty, the snow leopard, which is what Hemis national park is famous for. People from far and wide come here only to catch a glimpse of this majestic animal and capture them in frames.
What could be a sight better than seeing these wonderful creatures dwelling in their natural habitats?
Best time to Visit Hemis national park:
A trip to the Hemis national park can be best enjoyed during the Summer (May-June) and the Spring (July-October) season, when the temperatures are moderate to stroll around in this alpine forest.
The temperatures fall to a low of about 5° C and are easily bearable with a little help from woolen materials. Moreover, you will be able to use the trekking routes as they will be open during this time.
But if you want to catch a glimpse of the infamous beast that prances in and around every corner of this national park in Ladakh, mid-winter will probably be the best time for you to do so.
Things you can do around here:
- Visiting Hemis Monastery:
Hemis monastery is a Buddhist monastery establish even before the 11th century. Sculptures of Lord Buddha made of both gold and silver and scores of other kinds of stuff make it a place of great historical importance. Thousands of monks now live here and pray to their God every day. No place can be any better than this for your spiritual awakening.
It’s close to the Heims national park and one can easily drop by this beautiful monastery.
- Go on a safari:
Upon hearing about a national park, the first thing that pops up in our heads is “going on a Safari!”. In this Ladakh national park, you can go on a safari and spend the day watching the never-before-seen animals and birds as well as the flora collection that it provides.
Jeeps are available but will only show you around the park, not the inside.
- Take a trek:
While you are here, you can think about going on a trek to the Gotsang Gompa. Located close to the Heims monastery is this place full of solitude and peace. You need to take a trek in the mountains to reach this place. But, once you reach the top after all the hard work and let yourself in this wonderful place, it will be worth it!
Visiting this place will make you achieve inner peace and self-satisfaction and will cleanse your mind and soul.
Useful information on Hemis national park:
- The Hemis national park is open all days of the week.
- It is advisable to bring an extra batch of woolen cloths, mufflers, etc.
- Food is available at nearby stalls but is advisable to bring packed food and plenty of water.
- You should keep first aid handy in case of an emergency.
- Keep medicines that can be helpful in case someone suffers from altitude sickness.
- No one can bring cars inside. You have to keep it outside of the park in the parking lots available.
- Keep a map of the national park while on the journey.
- Trekking must be avoided if there is a snowstorm or during the night.
Frequently asked questions on Hemis national park:
- Where is Hemis national park?
The Hemis national park is situated in the former state of Jammu and Kashmir, now in the eastern region of Ladakh union territory. It is the largest national park in India covering an area of about 4400 square kilometers and is filled with different varieties of flora and fauna.
- Which is the biggest national park in Ladakh?
The biggest national park is the Hemis national park. Situated in the mountain-rich state of Jammu and Kashmir, about an hour to reach the park from Leh. The national park is abundant in both animals and birds as well as captivating sites.
- How to visit Hemis national park?
You can easily visit Hemis national park. You can take a flight from Srinagar, Chandigarh, Jammu to Leh. Then you have to take a bus to reach this beautiful national park in Ladakh.
- What Hemis national park is famous for?
Hemis national park, also known as Hemis high altitude national park is a wildlife protected area in the union territory of Ladakh. Hemis national park is famous for its abundance of snow leopards. This place also boasts the world’s highest number of snow leopards.
- What is the best time to visit Hemis national park?
Hemis national park can be visited throughout the year but October is the best time to visit when the weather is decent enough. But, if you want to watch snow leopards prancing across in their natural habitat, you have to come during the winter.
- What is the opening and closing time for Hemis national park?
Opening time: 9:00 am
Closing time: 5:00 pm
The Hemis national park is open everyday.
- Are there any entrance fees for Hemis national park?
Yes, you have to pay to enter the national park. For Indians, it is 20 INR and for foreigners, it is 100 INR per person.