Spiti – the Hidden Valley2 mins read
September 01, 2013
Spiti is perfect as a family holiday, and the best time to travel is during the summer break in Europe. Here is Anne Marie Davies reflection on their trip, travelling as a family with her two daughters aged 5 and 7 years old.
Spiti is located in Himachal Pradesh, a state in Northern in India. Spiti is part of the Himalayas, the youngest mountain range on the planet. Not only is the nature breathtaking; the rural communities are impressive with their culture, history and long traditions. This area is truly off the beaten track and you will not meet many other travellers. The best time to travel is from mid-May to mid-October. We travelled in June and July. Maximum Altitude is about 5000 meters, and wow – what a view!
Ethical Travel Portal focuses on green and responsible travel to various destinations. The trips are tailor-made in cooperation with local partners who are specialists in their communities and use tourism as a tool to ‘create better places for people to live in and visit’. We were therefore comfortable that our trip would meet our expectations and at the same time benefit the local communities we would be visiting. And it certainly did!
The highest point of our trip, at 4950m. By this time the whole group is well acclimatized and luckily no one suffers from the high altitude. Trekking in high altitude, on our way to our first homestay in a small mountain village, Demul.
After a long days trek, we arrive at our next village, eager to meet our new hosts in Langza (4400m). After a days trek in the thin mountain air, soaking in the many spectacular views along the route, it’s always a very special experience arriving at a village and being welcomed by our host families with big smiles and a chai.
The homestays work on a rotation basis, houses take turns accommodating tourists so that everyone benefits equally, ensuring direct economic benefits to the local communities while giving tourists a better understanding of the lifestyles of these hard-working mountain folk. One of the main highlights of our trip was getting the chance to meet the friendly locals and interact in their everyday life.
Folk dance in Demul, in stunning surroundings. It is always nice to see the local people performing. It certainly connects your experience with the place you are visiting.
We were sad to leave, but content and enriched with a cultural encounter and experience we’ll carry with us forever. There are so many “add-on” values on this trip. From the people we met to the landscape we passed through. Our impressions are huge and the experiences were beyond our involved in tourism here really do benefit from it.
Written by Anne Marie Davies for Ethical Travel Portal
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