Chopta is an extremely scenic place. It’s quite close to places like Auli, which is popularly known as the ‘Switzerland Of India’ and Tungnath, a heavenly abode which makes it a perfect trek for weekends. The place is getting popular as the people are preferring natural outdoors to spend their time instead of pubs, bars and fancy places.
ABOUT THE TREK
Almighty Himalayas are visible from Chopta all year round. Chopta is the base for Tungnath Chandrashila trek where Chopta is the last motorable point. From Chopta trek start point Tungnath is 3.5 kilometers away and Chandrashila is another 1 kilometer ahead of Tungnath temple. Also Tungnath temple is considered as the world’s highest Shiva temple. Tungnath is a 3 hour trek from the main settlement. It’s known for its mythological significance for this is the place where Ravan prayed to lord Shiva. It’s called the RavanShila, which stands tall across the Tungnath peak overseeing the Great Himalayas. The trek has everything you hape for. You get spectacular views of Chaukhambha right from deoria tal. The night skies are beautiful(You get to see milky way bands across the sky!!). You can expect a lot of snow along the way , especially on the summit climb day.
There is a paved path from Chopta to all the way up till tungnath. We need to use many microspikes for that part as it’s impossible to get a good grip on ice. Final part of the ascent from Tungnath to Chandrashila is decently steep as compared to the rest of the trail. There is knee deep snow in a few parts. Once you are on the summit you get to see the big peaks of garhwal himalayas (nanda devi, trishul etc). So as to get the clear view you need to start at 5:00 AM in the morning on the summit day.
THINGS TO WATCH OUT
The entire region of this part of Uttrakhand is extremely popular among the tourists so you can expect a fair amount of crowd. It’s also a hotspot for a lot of touristy activities like Zorbing, Skiing, Zip lining, etc. The flora and fauna of this region is so diverse and breathtaking with varieties of flowers and medicinal plants growing everywhere your eyes see. Chopta is a small region of meadows where the tree line ends and all you see is a land of fluffy turf of grass for as far as your eyes can venture.
BEST TIME TO VISIT
If you are planning to visit Chopta, the best time is definitely from April to July. The winsome trails covered with Rhododendrons (Buras) will take your breath away. The tiny Pika mouse that is only found in the Tundra region will peak out from the cracks. The views though are just spellbinding and majestic.
HOW TO REACH
You can reach by your own car/ taxi through Rishikesh, Rudraprayag, Ukhimath and then Saari and Chopta. This option is although quite expensive but comfortable.
Reach Rishikesh and then catch a bus till Ukhimath or Guptkashi. After that they shared jeeps/ boleros till Saari village or Chopta.
Catch a direct bus from Delhi ISBT kasmiri gate to gupt kashi (leaves around 8–9 pm everyday). After that they shared jeeps / boleros till Saari village or Chopta.
WHERE TO STAY
Both Deoria Tal & Chopta have resorts, cemented hotels and Campsites. So choose your accommodation accordingly. However, Camping in Chopta is done in Duggalbitta, A site just 7 km before Chopta. Another place for Camping is Deoria Tal, A site which is 57 km from Chopta in Sari Village that is located on Ukhimath-Chopta road.
Many people want to camp at Chopta top in Chandrashila or Tungnath, however, it is not suggested as the weather is unpredictable and it can be dangerous without local guidance.
3–4 days are enough to explore Chopta and nearby places. Just enjoy the serene place and admire its mesmerizing beauty.
Day 1: Depart from Delhi and arrive at Chopta. It will take around 12–13 hours. Overnight stay in Chopta.
Day 2: After morning breakfast, Trek to Tungnath Temple and Chandrashila peak. Trek back to the Hotel. It will take an entire day.
Day 3: After breakfast, drive to nearby Sari village and start your trek to Deoria Tal lake. Overnight enjoy camping in Deoria Tal.
Day 4: After early morning breakfast, trek back to sari village and leave for Delhi.
Day 5: Only If you have one leisure day. You can choose to stay one night in Rishikesh on your way back to Delhi. And enjoy River Rafting here.
If you’re short on time you can save your 1-day by not visiting Deoria Tal and directly heading back to Delhi from Chopta.