Mystic India 2024 – The Himalayan Adventure

A journey into the mystical for the spiritual adventurer in you

The long awaited fifth Mystic India trip is here! And this one promises to be the adventure of a lifetime. If you’ve thought about going to the Himalayas for a trek into the mountains, see some of the most beautiful places on Earth, and at the same time make it a spiritual adventure, this is the trip for you. Welcome to the Mystic India club! On this journey you will experience the cultural and spiritual roots of some of the oldest traditions in the world. We don’t go to the usual touristy places, but rather on the real adventure off the beaten track so you can see India inside out. The trip is fun with a healthy balance of experiences, luxury and adventure. You’ll stay in 3-5 star hotels at night, but during the day we’ll go all out on some breath-taking experiences.

The trip is led by Radha Govinda, who was a monk for over 11 years, and his wife Kishori who is a teacher in Bhakti as well as yoga. The trips always feature yoga, meditation and kirtan along the way and with an amazing group every year, it’s always an adventure!

Kurukshetra

Our first destination is Kurukshetra, the place where the Bhagavad Gita – the holy book for over 2 billion people on the planet who are followers of the Vedic tradition was spoken 5000 years ago and the battleground of the (in)famous Mahabharata war where 4 million warriors fought.

Rishikesh

Known as the Gateway to the Himalayas, the home of the Beatles ashram and the land of the yogis, you are in a for a treat in this spiritual town at the foothills of the Himalayas. Situated on the banks of the pure turquoise Ganges river, this serene and peaceful pace will transport you to a state of peaceful contemplation.

Badrinath

We will venture deep into the Himalayas to Badrinath, that is the location of an ancient Vishnu temple in the midst of the mountains. This is also said to be the place where many yogis performed years of meditation and the place where ancient sages wrote sacred texts which are followed by Hindus and other Vedic traditions.

Valley of Flowers Trek

Valley of Flowers is a 3 day (easy – moderate difficulty level) trek to a UNESCO world heritage site deep in the Himalayan valley where wildflowers bloom and create an awe inspiring view. We are visiting this valley at the peak of it’s bloom so you see the most variety of flowers. The trek itself laden with forests, mountains and waterfalls is an amazing experience.

Package price £1450+flights

The cost of the trip is £1450 + flights. Your actual cost will depend on the flight prices at the time of booking.

What’s included in your price?

  • Accommodation (Shared with one other person)
  • 3 Vegetarian meals everyday
  • Local travel within India by luxury AC car Innova Crysta. The places on our route through the Himalayas make it difficult for buses. Travel is more comfortable and reliable in these cars. See picture below
  • Guides for the trip, including spiritual activities, yoga, etc
  • Permits for trekking
Innova Crysta used for travel in India

What’s NOT included in your price?

  • Onward and return flights to India (We can give you a price at the time of booking, or you could book your own)
  • Visa costs, travel/medical insurance, meals other than those mentioned, and vaccination charges
  • Entry fee to attractions that have a charge. Most places we are visiting don’t have a charge, but some may do.
  • Room service, costs to visit spa, massages, etc
  • Personal expenses such as laundry, telephone, tips, camera & video fees at national parks, museums and monuments.
  • Trekking equipment (not absolutely essential, but if you decide to bring any, it will be at your own cost)
  • Porters if you need for trekking, pony, ropeway charges (if any)
  • Expenses incurred due to bad weather, road closures, travel interruptions due to means beyond our control
  • Anything that is not in the included list above

Personal room supplement

If you prefer to have your own room throughout the trip, the cost of your travel would be £2730 (£1880 + flights. Here we’ve considered flights to be £850, but total price may vary based on flight prices)

How do I find out more, or register? What if I have questions?

Please fill out the form to register your interest below. Once you’ve registered, we’ll get in touch with you, answer your questions, make sure you are ready for the trip and then send you an official booking form with payment options.

Interest-free installment option

If you would really like to come but can’t make a full payment, you have the option of paying by interest free installments.

First installment when you book – £1400 (We’ll book your flights, internal travel and secure your hotels rooms).

Second installment  – £899 before 1 June

P.S. If you are struggling with money and would still like to go on the trip, we can discuss further installment options during our call.

Refund policy

If due to unforeseen circumstances you need to cancel your trip, please get in touch with us as soon as you can. We are a charity and don’t run these trips as a business, so we’re happy to give you whatever costs we can refund from our partners and other businesses we pay. But it all depends on the payments we’ve already made towards hotels, flights and other facilities. Usually flights and certain deposit for hotels are non-refundable. But whatever we can refund, we will.

Frequently asked questions about the trek

Yes, absolutely. The Valley of Flowers trek is a good first-time trek. You get to experience high-altitude trekking. But make sure you work on your fitness!

To be honest, the Valley Of Flowers trek is not difficult. It is rated as ‘moderate (suitable for fit beginners)’. That too only because trekking days are slightly long. It’s not a difficult trek, but it’s not a walk in the park either. A good test is that you should be able to comfortably walk 10 kilometres in 90 minutes, or run 5 kilometres in 45 minutes. But it’s at a height of 12,000 feet (3650 metres), so oxygen will be slightly less than that available at sea level.

Yes. Valley of Flowers trek is safe because it is one of the most well-known treks in the Indian Himalayas and has well-laid trails frequented by pilgrims. Yet, you would need to be careful on slippery sections on the trail especially when it is raining.

At the very least you should have good, comfortable trekking shoes. Trekking poles are optional. You will need a backpack to carry essentials for 2 nights. Alternatively you can hire a porter (costs borne by you). Most of all, you need to be mentally prepared for the trek.

It’s not a bad idea! Don’t just show up for the trek when you haven’t walked for months. Practice walking long distances once or twice a week. Although we aren’t climbing Everest, there will be somewhat of a climb, so practice going up and down stairs too.

Daytime temperature can vary from 10 to 18 degree Celsius. Temperature at night can drop to 5 degrees.

In August, monsoon clouds hang low and wash over the entire valley. Maximum flowers in the valley bloom during this period. While you get a good amount of rain at at lower altitudes during this time, at the higher altitudes it turns into a drizzle.

Well, it really depends on your fitness rather than your age. But we’d say if you’re over 60, you’ll need to have a good level of fitness.

Ponies, porters and helicopters are all available for the first day of trekking till Ghangaria (base camp). You will need to pay for these yourself. But the actual trek from base camp to Valley of flowers and back (3.7 kilometres each way) you will need to do on your own.

Interested? Not sure? Have questions? Register your interest here

Whatever your reason, please fill out the form below and we’ll call you soon to answer your questions and we can go from there

    Dates

    Friday 26 July, 2024 – Saturday  10 August, 2024

    Travel route

    New Delhi – Kurukshetra – Rishikesh – Rudraprayag – Badrinath – Valley of flowers trek – Rudraprayag – New Delhi

    Price

    £1450 + flights
    Includes accommodation, local travel, meals, trekking permits, yoga and meditation sessions, guides for the trip. See more details below

    Schedule and route

    Kurukshetra

    July 26, Friday

    We depart from London Heathrow for the epic Mystic India Himalayan Adventure trip!

    Flight information
    DateDepartureArrivalAirline
    Friday 26 July, 2024London Heathrow, 20.05New Delhi, 9.30 (Saturday 27 July, 2024)Virgin VS 300 (Subject to change)

    Day 1: Saturday, 27 July

    We’ll arrive at Delhi Airport at 9.30am and head over straight to Kurukshetra which is around a 3 hour drive. We’ll spend the day recuperating, maybe doing a little yoga in the evening, and have our welcome orientation gathering with important information to stay healthy, setting the right intention to make the most of the trip. And of course there’s a meal in there somewhere!

    Day 2: Sunday, 28 July

    We’ll visit the famous site of the battlefield, learn about the history and philosophy of the Bhagavad Gita, and visit the temple signifying the spot. We’ll also visit the 5000 year old (immortal) Banyan tree that was there at the time and the stories that happened during that time.

    Rishikesh

    Day 3: Monday, 29 July

    We set off from a historical Kurukshetra to a yogic Rishikesh that is at the foothills of the Himalayas. It’s about a 4 hour drive. We’ll check in to the Divine Resort, relax and maybe go on a stroll through town and along the Ganges. It’s a great place for shopping!

    Day 4: Tuesday, 30 July

    We’ll visit an ancient cave of the sage Vasistha where he meditated for years. As soon as you enter, you feel an amazing energy within. You could even meditate there if you wish. We’ll go for a dip in the clear water of the Ganges and maybe visit the ashram where the Beatles stayed. In the evening, we go and offer the famous Arati to the Ganges river.

    Day 5: Wednesday, 31 July

    Another day in Rishikesh and we’ll give you time to chill out by yourself, shop and relax. We’ll visit the Ram and Laxman Jhula, two pedestrian suspension bridges that swing over the Ganges. And for those of you who are into adventure, there’s rafting and lots more!

    Badrinath, Rudraprayag and Mana Village

    Day 6: Thursday, 1 August

    We travel to Rudraprayag after breakfast. ‘Prayag’ is a confluence of rivers, and here the rivers Alakananda and Mandakini that originate from the Himalayas merge and form a beautiful sight. It’s about a 4 hour drive. We’ll have lunch, rest, see the confluence of the river and a temple nearby, and just absorb the beauty of the location. It’s a great hotel we’re staying in too, so you’ll have time to relax.

    Day 7: Friday, 2 August

    We’ll head over to Badrinath, one of the oldest and most famous locations in India. It’s a place of spiritual greatness where the Vedas were written. It’s a good five hour drive to get there and the views as we drive through the Himalayas are breath taking. Once we arrive, we’ll take it easy and maybe go for a stroll.

    Day 8: Saturday, 3 August

    We’ll visit the famous Vishnu temple that thousands flock to see every year. It is one of the 4 most holy places in India that one is supposed to visit during their lifetime. We’ll head over to Vyasa’s cave where he wrote the Vedas and a few other places of spiritual significance nearby. We’ll take part in ceremonies performed there and absorb the spiritual atmosphere in town. We’ll tell you more when we get there.

    Day 9: Sunday, 4 August

    Another day in Badrinath as we visit some more places of spiritual significance – Bhim pul, Charan paduka and more. We’ll also visit Mana Village, which is the village closest to the China border and experience what it’s like to live in the Himalayas.

    The Valley of Flowers Trek

    Day 10: Monday, 5 August (start point to base camp)

    It’s time for our much awaited trek in the Himalayas to the Valley of Flowers. The Valley of Flowers trek is one of India’s most popular treks in the Himalayas. In 1980, the Indian government created the Valley of Flowers National Park, and later in 2002, it was recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This pushed Valley of Flowers on the bucket list of trekkers from around the world. The trek is spread out over 3 days. It is a moderate level trek, and we’ve especially planned it on weekdays so it’s quieter too!

    The first day, we trek from our starting point (Poolna) to base camp (Ghangaria)

    • Trek distance: 9 km
    • Trek Duration: 5-6 hours
    • Altitude gain: 7,785 ft to 10,520 ft

    A short drive followed by a gently ascending river-side trail. The trail is well-laid out with several trekkers and pilgrims frequenting the route. Once we’ve arrived in Ghangaria, we’ll be staying in luxurious camps in the midst of the Himalayas!

    Day 11: Tuesday, 6 August (base camp to Valley of Flowers and back to base camp)

    On our second day, we trek to the Valley of Flowers and trek back to Ghangaria (our base camp). We’re visiting in early August which is when the valley is in full bloom and is the best time to visit!

    • Trek distance: 3.7 km each way
    • Trek Duration: 6 hours
    • Altitude gain: 10,520 ft to 11,550 ft

    A rewarding trek to Valley of Flowers, with flowers blooming on either sides of the trail. Then we come back to our camp in Ghangaria.

    Day 12: Wednesday, 7 August (base camp back to where we started)

    On our final day, it’s a swift descent back to our starting point. We’ll then head over to Joshimath another place of beauty and stay the night before moving on again.

    • Trek distance: 9 km
    • Trek Duration: 4 hours
    • Altitude loss: 10,520 ft to 6,215 ft

    The final journey back

    Day 13: Thursday, 8 August

    We start our journey back to Delhi, and we’ll break it up into two shorter trips. We’ll make a stop halfway at the amazing Hoa resort in Shivpuri in the middle of the valleys and stay there (drive 6 hours), relax and recuperate after all the walking, chill at the hotel and get together for a final big Mystic India dinner.

    Day 14: Friday, 9 August

    It’s our final day and we get together in the morning and reflect on our experiences, share memories and form a closing circle. We’ll have lunch and then head over straight to Delhi airport for our trip back home!

    Flight information
    DateDepartureArrivalFlight details
    Saturday 10 August, 2024New Delhi, 2.05London Heathrow, 7.20amVirgin, VS 303 (Subject to change)

    Memories from the previous 3 Mystic India trips

    Would you like to stay updated for future retreats?