Chardham for Unforgettable Family Time

Chardham for Unforgettable Family Time


The Chardham Yatra is one of the most popular pilgrimages in India, taking travellers across the four holy shrines of Badrinath, Kedarnath, Gangotri, and Yamunotri located in the Garhwal Himalayas. While traditionally done on foot, the helicopter tour makes the journey more convenient and family-friendly.
Opting for a helicopter tour allows you to cover long distances quickly while avoiding treacherous mountain roads. The aerial views of the Himalayas are breathtaking. Flying directly between the temples reduces travel time significantly, making it easier to manage children. The helicopters land right next to the temples, minimizing walking. You can customize the itinerary based on your family’s interests and stamina.
The helicopter tour allows the whole family, including elderly members, to undertake this important spiritual journey with relative ease. The experience creates lifelong memories without being too demanding physically. With careful planning, the Chardham Yatra by helicopter can be a comfortable, safe and deeply satisfying family holiday.

Safety Precautions

Taking proper safety precautions is crucial when embarking on the Chardham Yatra helicopter tour with your family. The Himalayan terrain can be unpredictable and dangerous if not adequately prepared.
First and foremost, closely follow all safety guidelines provided by your helicopter tour operator. Pay attention to the safety demonstration and make sure young children are seated properly and buckled in. Have any necessary medications or emergency supplies easily accessible during the flight.
Pack a first aid kit in your bags and make sure it is well-stocked with bandages, antiseptic creams, pain relievers, altitude sickness tablets, etc. Carry pocket warmers and extra layers in case of sudden weather changes in the mountains. Having ample water and snacks is also important.
Research your destinations in advance and take note of any potential hazards or risks. Always stick to designated trails and walkways when exploring temple sites or mountainous areas on foot. Remain vigilant of your surroundings and keep young children close by your side at all times.
Following basic safety measures and having emergency supplies on hand will help ensure your Chardham Yatra is a memorable and safe family adventure. The precautions taken before and during your helicopter tour will allow you to fully immerse in the sights and blessings of the holy Char Dham temples worry-free.

Packing Tips

When going on a Chardham Yatra by helicopter with your family, packing appropriately can make your trip much smoother. Here are some tips on what to pack:

Recommended Clothing and Gear

  • Bring layers of clothing that can be added or removed as the temperature changes when gaining altitude. Fleeces, jackets, hats, gloves, and scarves are essential.
  • Hiking shoes or boots with good ankle support are a must for exploring the terrain. Bring broken-in shoes to avoid blisters.
  • Sunglasses and sunscreen are vital to protect from the intense sunlight at high altitudes.
  • Bring flashlights or headlamps in case of power outages.
  • Pack rain gear like ponchos and umbrellas. The weather can change quickly in the mountains.

Items to Pack for Kids

  • Make sure kids have warm clothing and good shoes/boots for outdoor activities. You may want to pack extra socks.
  • Pack favourite snacks, games, books, tablets, etc. to keep them entertained during long drives or waits.
  • Bring any necessary medications, baby formula, diapers, wipes, etc. Supplies may be hard to find in remote areas.
  • Kid-sized backpacks, walking sticks, and binoculars can make exploring more fun.

Tips for Packing Light

  • Choose versatile clothing like hiking pants over jeans to get more use out of each item. Stick to 2-3 neutral colors.
  • Roll clothes instead of folding them to maximize space. Use packing cubes or compression sacks.
  • Only bring essential toiletries in small bottles or bars instead of big bottles.
  • Wear bulky items like jackets and hiking boots when travelling to save space.
  • Consider packing a portable charger instead of multiple devices and chargers to minimize electronics.
  • Only pack what you absolutely need to keep bags as light as possible. Laundry services are available in most hotels.

Food and Accommodation

The Chardham Yatra offers a range of family-friendly accommodation options. When choosing where to stay, consider your family’s needs and preferences.

Best places to stay

In Badrinath, look for hotels near the temple or on the banks of the Alaknanda River for convenience and views. Some good options are the Sarovar Portico, Hotel Snow Crest, and Hotel Narayan Palace.
In Kedarnath, stay in hotels along the main market area near the temple. Good choices are Hotel Bhim Palace, Shivalik Valley Resorts, and the Kedar Dev’s Home.
Gangotri has fewer accommodation options, but GMVN Tourist Bungalow and Hotel Jahanvi are nice. Stay in Yamunotri at the GMVN Tourist Rest House for amazing mountain views.

Family-friendly accommodation

When travelling with kids, look for hotels that offer cribs, children’s beds, play areas, and child-friendly meals. Hotels like Sarovar Portico, Hotel Snow Crest, and Hotel Narayan Palace cater well to families.
Opt for spacious family rooms or interconnected rooms. Carry baby monitors, bed guards, and other gear to baby-proof rooms.

Local cuisine

Try local Garhwali and Kumaoni cuisine like Aloo Ke Gutke, Phanu, Arsa, and Bhatt Ki Churkani. Kafuli, a spinach preparation, and Bhang Ki Chutney are also must-eats.
Kids will love piping hot Maggi, creamy tomato soup, cheese omelettes, and masala fries. Most restaurants can whip up basic Indian and continental dishes for children.
Pack healthy snacks for kids like fruits, sandwiches, yoghurt, nuts, and granola bars for when restaurant food doesn’t appeal. Carry bottled water and drinks as well.

Family-Friendly Activities

The Chardham Yatra by helicopter is a wonderful opportunity for families to explore the natural and spiritual wonders of the Himalayas together. Here are some recommendations for family-friendly activities during your helicopter tour:


  • Visit the beautiful Yamunotri and Gangotri temples, which are dedicated to the goddesses Yamuna and Ganga. Let the kids play in the refreshing waters of the actual sources of the rivers.
  • Take a helicopter tour of the Kedarnath Valley for stunning aerial views of the snow-capped peaks. Look out for mountain goats and yaks roaming the slopes.
  • Stop at the scenic Vasudhara Falls near Badrinath Temple. It’s an easy hike for the whole family to see the impressive 125-foot-high waterfall.
  • Marvel at the views of Nanda Devi, India’s second highest mountain, from Auli during a cable car ride.

Kid-Friendly Attractions

  • Ride a pony or take a fun helicopter tour at Hemkund Sahib Gurudwara near Badrinath. Kids will love playing in the snow.
  • Visit the adorable lambs at a local farm or sadhu settlement along the way. Feed the animals and learn about mountain village life.
  • Shop for souvenirs and toys at the markets in the temple towns. Pick up prayer beads, singing bowls, woollens, and more.

Local Festivals

  • Attend the lively Basant Panchami festival at Badrinath Temple in spring, with music, dance, and colourful rituals.
  • Time your visit during the Himalayan Fruits Festival at Chinyalisaur near Uttarkashi in July-August, and let the kids enjoy fruit-themed activities.
  • Watch the spectacular Nanda Devi Raj Jat pilgrimage held every 12 years, involving hundreds of locals trekking together.
With so many engaging things to do, your helicopter tour of Chardham will be an unforgettable adventure for the whole family!

Photography Tips

Taking memorable photos during your Chardham Yatra by helicopter with family is a must. Here are some tips to help you capture the best moments:

Best Spots for Family Photos

  • Kedarnath Temple – Get a photo with the majestic temple in the background. Try and time your visit for sunrise or sunset for spectacular lighting.
  • Yamunotri Temple – The scenic backdrop of mountains and clear blue skies make Yamunotri a prime photo location. Pose by the hot springs for a fun family pic.
  • Hemkund Sahib – This serene Sikh pilgrimage site nestled amidst snowy peaks provides a unique photo opportunity for the family. The crystal clear lake is highly photogenic.
  • Chopta – Ride up the Tungnath Temple and get a panoramic family shot with breathtaking Himalayan vistas. The meadows at Chopta are also wonderful for portraits.

Photography Gear to Carry

  • DSLR camera with wide angle and zoom lenses to capture both landscapes and close-ups
  • Tripod for stability, especially in low light conditions
  • External flash for fill light
  • Extra batteries and memory cards
  • Waterproof/shockproof camera bag to protect your gear

Tips for Taking Great Photos

  • Scout locations in advance and visualize your shots
  • Focus on people’s expressions and emotions rather than just scenery
  • Take candid photos in addition to posed portraits
  • Use fill flash to brighten faces on bright days
  • Shoot during golden hour for warm, soft lighting
  • Get creative with composition – play with foreground, middle ground and background
  • Take some photos in black and white for dramatic effect
  • Don’t forget to get in some of the photos yourself!
Following these photography tips will ensure you come home with stunning photos from your Chardham Yatra that you’ll cherish for years.

Managing Finances

Chardham Yatra can be an expensive trip, so managing your finances wisely is essential, especially when travelling with family. Here are some tips:
Budgeting Tips
  • Set a total trip budget and allocate amounts for accommodation, food, transport, activities, shopping etc. Leave a buffer for unexpected costs.
  • Book hotels/camps in advance for the best rates. Look for family rooms to save costs.
  • Use public transport like buses where possible instead of taxis. Share taxis when you can.
  • Carry home-cooked snacks and water to reduce food costs. Eat local/street food for cheap meals.
  • Buy entry tickets for temples online to save time and money.
Recommended Daily Allowance
  • Budget ₹1500-2000 per adult for food, accommodation and transport.
  • ₹1000-1500 for older children, ₹500-800 for younger kids.
  • Additional ₹1000-2000 for activities like rafting, cable car etc.
Payment Options
  • Carry cash for daily expenses, and keep large sums in a bank account. Withdraw from ATMs when needed.
  • Keep credit/debit cards as backup. Inform the bank before travel.
  • Install payment apps like PayTM for easy online payments. Offline options work well too.
  • For major expenses, bank transfers or demand drafts are safer than carrying cash.
By planning wisely and budgeting for your family trip, you can ensure a smooth Chardham Yatra within your finances. Stick to your budget as much as possible for a stress-free experience.

Health and Altitude Sickness

Going on a Chardham Yatra by helicopter involves visiting high-altitude areas like Kedarnath and Badrinath. The change in altitude can lead to altitude sickness if not managed properly. Here are some tips to handle health at high altitudes:
  • Acclimatize – Don’t exert yourself initially when you reach high altitudes. Take it easy and give your body time to adjust to the lower oxygen levels. Sleep low and climb high during the day.
  • Stay hydrated – The air is drier at high altitudes. Drink plenty of fluids like water, juices, soup etc. Avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Eat light – Avoid heavy and oily foods. Include more fruits, vegetables and carbohydrates in your diet.
  • Avoid strenuous exercise – Don’t overexert yourself with demanding physical activity. Take things slowly.
  • Get proper rest – Lack of sleep can worsen altitude sickness. Make sure you get adequate rest.
  • Medicines – Consult your doctor about carrying Diamox or other medication prescribed for altitude sickness. It can help reduce symptoms.
  • Descend immediately – If symptoms like headache, nausea, dizziness etc persist, it’s important to descend to lower altitudes immediately. Don’t delay or push through it.
Carry a first aid kit with medicines for headache, nausea, diarrhoea, blisters etc along with bandages, antiseptic creams and other supplies. Keep emergency numbers handy. Be prepared to handle medical emergencies at high altitudes. Proper acclimatization, diet and rest can help minimize altitude sickness on your Chardham yatra.

Making Memories

The Chardham Yatra is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will create lasting memories for your whole family. Here are some ideas to make the most of this special time together:
  • Play travel games in the car or helicopter to pass the time and bond. The “license plate game” and “I Spy” are fun options. Bring a deck of cards for old favourites like “Go Fish.”
  • Let the kids pick a special stuffed animal to take the trip as their adventure buddy. Take photos of the stuffed friend at each temple for a scrapbook when you return home.
  • Have older kids keep a trip journal, sketching their favourite sights and jotting down reflections each day. Young children can dictate thoughts to parents to include.
  • Splurge on professional family photos at key destinations – in front of temple entrances or mountain vistas. Capture candid moments too – selfies on the helicopter, group hugs after darshan.
  • Interview each other about the trip highlights and what Chardham meant to you spiritually. Record videos to look back on later.
  • Do a collaborative art project with natural items like leaves or rocks collected along the way. Create a Chardham-themed painting or mobile together.
The Chardham Yatra makes for incredible family bonding. Finding creative ways to connect and memorialize the journey will help forge priceless memories.


The Chardham Yatra by helicopter is an unforgettable experience for families looking to connect spiritually while seeing some of India’s most magnificent scenery. By taking proper safety precautions, packing wisely, planning your budget, and focusing on making memories, your family will cherish this holy adventure.
Here are some key points to remember from this guide:
  • Research helicopter safety records and choose a reputable company. Follow all safety protocols during the flight.
  • Pack plenty of warm layers, medication, snacks, and games/books for kids. Travel as lightly as possible.
  • Book accommodations and meals ahead of time. Carry cash and cards. Buy local fruits/veggies.
  • Capture stunning photos of temples and mountains. Let kids journal or vlog their experiences.
  • Prevent altitude sickness by ascending gradually and staying hydrated. Get medical help if needed.
  • Bond as a family over shared spirituality and quality time in nature away from daily stresses.
The Chardham Yatra will provide a once-in-a-lifetime, faith-affirming journey your family will cherish forever. Travel safely, pack thoughtfully, and soak up every magical moment along the way. This pilgrimage will create priceless memories and bring your family closer together.

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