Rhododendron Treks in Nepal Make Adventure Travel Colorful
Springtime in Nepal is a good time for adventure travel particularly to see the Rhododendrons There are over thirty varieties of Rhododendron that bloom in all hilly regions of Nepal above 1,200 m altitude. Known as Guran or Chimal in Nepali, a Rhododendron trek offers a feast for the eyes without being too arduous adventure travel.
There are four major areas for Rhododendron treks, Milke Danda in remote eastern Nepal, nestled in the foothills of the Himalaya, the Upper Tamur River, the Langtang valley closer to Kathmandu and the Makulu Barun National park.
Milke Danda is a 25 km long high forested ridge with Sal forests in the Tamur and Arun river valleys and alpine vegetation at its highest point. It has beautiful mid-hill forest landscapes including the sacred lakes of Gufa Pokhari and Lam Pokhari. The area is notable for its core area of dense virgin Rhododendron forest. One has to fly to Biratnagar and take a bus to Basantapur to begin this trek.
The Milke Danda region blooms with some of the most spectacular rhododendron forests in the world. There are over twenty varieties found in the trek area, and the forests are usually in full bloom in April. Efforts are underway to have it declared a national park. One can take a stimulating two week trek with about six hours of walking every day in the region and explore the cloud forests as well. You will come across fascinating little villages where Sherpas, Chetris, Tambas and other ethnic tribes live.
Rhododendron trekking to the Upper Tamur River requires a flight to Bhadrapur and then a drive to Ilam, a well-known tea production center. The trek from here leads to the south-west side of the Kanchenjunga area and the upper valleys of the Tamur River system… It offers spectacular sighting of Rhododendrons in full bloom
Closer to Kathmandu, just a six hour drive away is Dhunche at an elevation of 2,000 meters. One can begin a trek here for the upper areas of the Langtang Valley. Nine species of Rhododendron can be seen in this region. The best time is late March to mid June, and in addition to the Rhododendron, spring blooms of wild poppy, magnolia and primrose will make the trek memorable.