- I would not go to very high altitudes like Spiti during this season. They still remain cold and dry. Low to mid altitudes (1500-3000 meters) generally offer the best spring colours.
- It is generally less crowded compared to high summers. So, you can get cheaper rates at most places.
- Many of these places will have seasonal delights on sale. Keep your eyes open. For example, rhododendron juices, both packaged and fresh, should be readily available all over Uttarakhand.
Best Himalayans Destinations for March-April
I am not really talking about McLeodganj. Inside a town, you will not get much of what I am talking about. The best way to experience the spring in Kangra is the explore the lower valleys and also to hike around the nearby villages. My lasting memory of Kangra SPring will always be that of Sidhpur, in the lower part of Dharamshala (near Norbulingka Institute). It is barely considered to be a separate destination and I ended up there accidentally. But those were some of my best spring frames. Also, you can always venture out into the Barot Valley, divided between Kangra and Mandi districts. You will find the following posts useful.
I know I have ranted many times about the overexploited Parvati Valley and I stand by it. Nevertheless, when I went there the first time many years ago, it was March. It was not planned but quickly realized how great this stretch looked in Spring. Especially, the Kasol to Chalal stretch and then the Rashol Trek beyond that. In case you have not realized, Rashol is also a rhododendron trek, at least one part of it.
It feels ironic to say it but Shangarh needs no introduction nowadays. When I went there the first time, no one had heard of it. But within a short span, it has become the most sought after destination and why not? I just hope that the locals maintain aura in the face of tourism onslaught and find sustainable ways to conduct their business. Anyway, I went there at the fag end of spring and it was as photogenic as ever. In any case, you can explore the entire GHNP region in this season. I am sure all these areas including Sainj, Tirthan, Jibhi, Jalori, and nearby Gadagushaini & Thachi Valley will be as great in terms of spring colours.
Now, the high passes to Ladakh will still remain closed in spring and the only way to experience a Ladakhi spring is to take a flight to Leh and then hire vehicles to explore. This is why I have never been to Ladakh in winter or spring. While the higher parts of Ladakh will be barren, the comparatively lower areas, especially the likes of Kargil, Suru Valley, and the Brokpa areas of Dah Hanu Biama etc experience excellent spring during this season. Everyone loves to eat apricots in Ladakh but this is the season when you can see the apricot orchards in full bloom. I got these pics below from Travel The Himalayas.
Waterfalls Hikes of Meghalaya
Now, the famed waterfalls of Meghalaya are accessible throughout the year. However, in the rainy season, it rains too much and affects mobility as well as visibility. The winters are safe but I find the dry season a bit too dull. That is why I think spring is perfect for the short waterfall hikes in Meghalaya such as Nongriat-Rainbow Falls, Phe Phe Falls, Krang Suri etc along with Dawki-Shnopdeng.
Yumthang Valley needs no introduction. It is the Valley of Flowers of the NE. Partly it is covered by the Singba Rhododendron Sanctuary (The name is self-explanatory) and the rest of the valley also gets covered with wild blossoms in spring and summer. However, yet again, I have been there only in the winter when it was all white. This is yet another place where I need to return in the right season.
Till then, read this Winter Yumthang Post.
The Tawang circuit in Arunachal has much more to offer than you think. During my recent trip, I noticed rhododendrons on the way to Sela Pass too. However, I think the more delightful colors will be seen in the lower areas of Dirang-Sangti Valley, and lesser-known Shergaon-Rupa belt. I am not sourcing any images as of now for this region. I just returned from a winter trip from there but I intend to go back in the spring. This area also is ideal for birdwatching in this season (I am doing that soon too).