Harshil Valley Vs Manali compares several aspects of both like ease of reach, stay options, internet connectivity, cafes and many more to help fellow travelers choose.
After having traveled both Harshil valley and Manali, I am sure that I’ll be present a decent comparison on Harshil valley and Manali. So lets get started.
Harshil Valley Vs Manali – All You Need To Know
Located at an altitude of 2600 m, Harshil valley gets its name from a small army cantonment area in Uttarkashi district. Surrounded by loft peaks, pristine villages and towering pines Harshil valley is the gateway to Gangotri Dham.
Manali meanwhile needs no introduction. One of the most popular tourist resorts in the Indian Himalays, Manali caters to every kind of traveler.
Therefore, here is a detailed Harshil Valley Vs Manali comparison to help you decide.
Harshil Valley Versus Manali – Ease of Reach
Manali gets the win here in my opinion. Widespread public transport is available to reach Manali while its comparatively more difficult to reach Harshil if you do not have your own vehicle and rely on public transport.
Delhi to Manali is around and Delhi to Harshil is around. Although the distance is same, reaching Harshil is way harder than reaching Manali, especially.
You can directly reach Manali via volvo or ordinary buses in around 14 hours. To reach Harshil though you have to break your journey at least at couple of places.
By the way, here is a super practical comparison post between Parvati valley and Tirthan valley. I am sure this will be very helpful for travelers.
Is Harshil Valley Better OR Manali – In Terms of Landscapes
Comparing the landscapes of two Himalayan regions is very subjective. But then again travelers often ask such questions based on beauty of places.
In my honest opinion, I found Harshil valley to be way more picturesque than Manali.
Gargantuan mountains visible up close, beautiful river meandering across the valley, pristine Himalayan hamlets are few reasons why I find Harshil more beautiful.
Although Manali has all of it but not as grand as Harshil valley does in my opinion. To get grander views you have to hike to vantage points or drive to higher places like Solang valley or Hamta valley.
Harshil Valley Vs Manali – Which Is Lesser Crowded
Harshil, once a quaint region now sees a decent tourist footfall. But when compared with Manali, it can be certainly called lesser crowded.
Manali being one of the famous hill stations in India is bound to attract hordes of travelers. These days Manali remains crowded almost throughout the year.
Therefore, if you have inclination for lesser crowded places, then Harshil will definitely be an apt choice. One suggestion would be to avoid the Summers when the crowd is at the highest in Harshil.
Is Harshil Valley Better OR Manali – As a Winter Destination
Harshil is perched at around 2600 m has a clear edge as a winter destination if you want to witness only snow and live snowfall. But no so much in terms of winter activities like skiing and snowboarding.
Draped under a thick blanket of snow during peak winter months, Harshil is nothing short of a winter wonderland. But Harshil falls short when it comes to adventure activities like skiing, snowboarding etc.
While it does snow in Manali, but the number snow spells and the amount has reduced over the past few years. Chances of seeing snow in main Manali town are high only during the fresh snow-spells.
But a lot of snow-points are usually accessible from Manali like Hamta valley, Solang Nalah and Lahaul valley. And a ton of snow activities like skiing or snowboarding.
So if you we strictly considered only sheer beauty during the winters, I feel Harshil would certainly triumph Manali. But Manali beats Harshil when all the aspects of a winter destination are considered.
Harshil Vs Manali – Hiking and Trekking
Both Manali and Harshil have absolutely no dearth of Picturesque trekking and hiking trails. While Manali has pretty famous treks in our country along with not so popular ones, Harshil has relatively lesser-known treks.
Manali is known for hikes and treks like Beas Kund, Bhrigu Lake, Hamta Pass, Lamadugh, Khanpari Tibba, Rani Sui Lake, Jogini Falls. These are quite popular and treks are organized frequently by the trekking companies.
While Harshil has some pretty offbeat hikes. The more famous ones include Lama Top, Sat tal hike, Kyarkoti trek, Lamkhaga trek. Some not so popular ones include Khandara bugyal near Sukki, Awana Bugyal.
If you are looking to kickstart you hiking journey as a beginner, here is detailed blog on 13 easy hikes and treks in Kullu that are beginner friendly.
Which Is Better Harshil Valley Or Manali – In Terms Of Stay Options
Manali has way more accommodation of varied types as per budget and comfort. Harshil valley has far fewer options when compared to Manali.
Apart from Basic hotels in Harshil market area, few homestays in Bagori and Dharali villages there are not many stay options in the valley. There is not even a single hostel in the valley, while luxury properties very less.
As far as Manali is concerned there is no dearth of accommodations options in Manali. From luxury cottages to budget hostels and everything in between, Manali caters to every kind of traveler as per budget and comfort.
By the way, if you are visiting Kasol and looking for some budget friendly options, here is blog on where to stay in Kasol under 1000 INR.
Harshil Valley Vs Manali – In Terms Of Cafes
Harshil valley although popular is nowhere near as popular as Manali. Therefore, good hippie-styled cafes serving scrumptious Italian, Israeli cuisines are not to be found in Harshil valley.
But simple Dhabas and small restaurants are in abundance in Harshil valley. Of course, you won’t get anything fancy, but expect basic north India food and the likes of momos and chowmein.
Manali on the other hand is a foodie’s heaven. With so many cafes to be explored and so many delicacies to try out, there won’t be a dull moment in Manali when it comes to food.
Some of the popular cafes in Manali include, Johnsons Cafe, Cafe 1947, Lazy dog, Fat plate Cafe to name a few.
Which Is Better Harshil OR Manali – Budget Traveling
Manali being the one of the most famous tourist resort in the country has decent infrastructure for budget travelers and backpackers. Harshil on the other hand is on the expensive side and is not very budget friendly.
You can easily get a room in inexpensive hotels under INR 500 in Manali or even a dorm bed in hostels of Manali at around INR 300 – INR 500 except for peak season.
With no hostels in the valley, getting a room in a homestay or hotel will at least cost you around INR 1000 in harshil valley. Therefore, people traveling solo might end spending a bit more than their liking.
Therefore food and stay should not cost more than INR 700 per day in Manali if you stay budget hotels and hostels and eat at Dhabhas. Food and stay in Harshil valley can cost INR 1200 – INR 1500.
By the way, if you are looking for a cheap solo trip to Himachal, here is a detailed blog on the same.
Which Is Better Harsil Valley OR Manali – In Terms Of Internet Connectivity
This one is a tie in my opinion. Both Harshil and Manali have decent connectivity. Airtel 4g, Jio 4g, Vodafone 4g works fine in Manali. While Airtel 4g and Jio 4g works in fine in Harshil.
A lot of properties offer WIFI as well in Manali. In Harshil though, none of the properties give you WIFI, although the place where I stayed at were planning to provide WIFI soon.
But that being said, even you can certainly manage with Jio 4g and Airtel in Harshil. Harshil market and Bagori village have decent speed when it comes to internet.
By the way, here is a detailed blog on which network is best for Himachal Pradesh.
Harshil Vs Manali – Which One Is Safer
This is one tie in my opinion. But Harshil and Manali are safe as it can get. But then again you have to be extremely careful while traveling to any place in the world.
I personally have been to Manali numerous times and always have had a pleasant experience. I traveled solo to Harshil recently and absolutely loved my time without any issues.
So be it Harshil valley or Manali both are safe for solo travelers, backpackers, couples from what I have experienced and observed.
This brings me to the end of this blog, I hope you I was able to put forth a decent comparison between Harshil valley and Manali.
In case you have any queries make sure you drop them in the comments and I’ll be glad to answer them.