If you’re reading this article, I’m assuming that you’re considering taking your child on a trek. And that’s wonderful!
At Indiahikes, we strongly believe that children must trek. When they’re young and observant is the best time to expose them to the outdoors. They absorb lessons of confidence, leadership and also learn to protect the environment. These are deep values that it takes a very long time to imbibe in a person, but it can happen over just a few days on a trek.
Here’s a video on the Best Himalayan treks for children
So right away, here are the best treks for children. These are all treks in the Himalayas. Some of them might be 2 days long, some might be 5 or 6 days long. But rest assured that these are good treks for children. They have just the right mix of trek time and leisure time.
1. Dayara Bugyal
Out of all our easy-moderate Himalayan treks, this would be best suited for children. It involves just 3-4 hours of trekking everyday. The whole trail promises lots of learning, as your trek mostly through dense forests and then open meadows. Big snow-clad mountains of the Garhwal Himalayas follow you from day one! So if you want to expose your child to the mountains for the first time, this is your best trek. It also has easy access and an easy exit in case your child does not take well to trekking.
2. Deoriatal – Chandrashila
Everything about this trek lends itself to a good trek for children. The drive to the base camp, Sari, is short. The first day’s trek is just around 2-3 hours long. The second day is slightly long, but on relatively flat terrain through lovely forests. The next day involves a grand summit climb, which is just difficult enough for children to get the thrill of completing it! The scenery of the lake, the big mountains, the quaint villages, they offer great exposure to the outdoors. So it’s a perfect trek for children and first timers too!
This has been the go-to trek for families for a long time. Because of the short distances and the beautiful campsites and the grand summit climb, it makes for a great trek for both, parents and children. What makes it difficult are the steep ascents. Right from the onset, it climbs quickly and gains altitude quickly. But the daily distances are short. If your child is fit and active in sports, he/she will be able to do this trek comfortably.
This is a fantastic trek for slightly older children. It is demanding, as the days are longer and with good ascents. But the presence of two lakes, Bekaltal and Brahmatal, and the promise of the thrilling summit climb make it a strong confidence-building trek.We would recommend it only if your child is physically fit, and has been following a fitness regime on a daily basis for at least two months.
5. Har Ki Dun
This is a long trek, but makes for an exciting experience as your trek beside a river and camp beside it. It makes for great cultural learning as you trek through ancient Himalayan villages and also walk deep into the valley that has lots of mythological stories attached to it. It involves long hours of trekking everyday. And because of its daily distances, it doesn’t lend itself to easy exits. So your child will have to be physically fit to undertake this trek. What it lacks is that boost of confidence that comes from climbing a summit. But it ranks high on adventure because of the secluded trails within a national park.
6. Deoban Weekend Trek
This is a trek apt for weekends. It’s very close to Dehradun and we’d recommend this trek any day over a weekend stay at a touristy destination like Mussoorie. It takes you to the real foothills of the Himalayas and has some stunning views! Your child will require some stamina and ample rest before the trek because the trek has a long day. Even though the trails are not very steep, it requires stamina.
7. Nag Tibba Weekend Trek
This one’s the go-to trek for children that live in and around Delhi. It is a weekend trek that promises a thrilling summit climb with some grand views of the mountains around. This requires good stamina on the child’s part mostly because of the travel involved before and after the trek. If you have time and can make it to Dehradun a day earlier than required, your child will be well-relaxed and enjoy the trek.
We have several other treks that might suit children. But the above are the best of them. If your child already has some high altitude trek experience, you could consider some of our moderately difficult treks for him/her.
We have a 50% scholarship for children
Because we believe that children must trek, we will waive off 50% of the trek fee for children between 8 and 10. This scholarship will be applicable on the Kedarkantha, Brahmatal, Dayara Bugyal and Deoriatal-Chandrashila treks. We do not have a scholarship on our weekend treks.
To avail this scholarship, write to [email protected] and we’ll help you out.
If you have any questions, just drop in a comment. We’ll help you out.
What you should do next
1. If you’re worried about the safety of your child, read this article about everything we do to keep our trekkers safe.
2. If you’d like to see how trekking enhances a child’s all round development, read our study here.
3. If you are part of a school / college, then perhaps you should take a look at our Experiential Learning Programme for students.
4. If you would like to learn from fellow trekkers and their experiences of taking their children on treks, read this article, or this one, or this one.
5. If you ended up here by chance and were looking for treks to do, see our upcoming treks here.
6. If you’d like to see the 13 best treks in India, click here to get a free guide.