If you are planning to go to Himachal in winters for the first time, you might have a question about “what to pack for Himachal trip in winters”. Winters are brutally cold in Himachal, so one has to pack appropriately in order to protect one’s self from cold.
Based on my experiences of travelling to Himachal during winters, I have curated this consolidated list of what to pack for Himachal trip in winters to help my fellow travelers. So lets get started.
What To Pack For Himachal Trip In Winters – 30 Essential Things
Packing is one of the most important aspects when it comes to traveling to Himachal. Especially during winters where temperatures plummet several degrees beyond zero at most of the places in Himachal
I personally have made a lot of winter trips to Himachal. And based out of my experiences of winter in Himachal, I am creating a list of super important things to pack for Himachal trip during winters.
Make sure you pack light and do not compromise over your warm clothes. By the way, here is a detailed winter guide for Kasol, which will help you plan you trip to Kasol without any hassles.
A good winter jacket which can endure negative temperatures
Light woolen to act as layering
Woolen Cap and Gloves
Full Trousers or Trek Pants or Denis (I would highly recommend against it and explain why)
Shirts, T shirts for men
Women can choose from what they normally wear
|Must carry things
Government ID card
Sandals and Flip Flops
Proper Hiking or Trekking shoes (In case you are into trekking)
Dental Hygiene products
Soap or Bodywash Or Shampoo
First Aid Kit
Pain relief Sprays
Any regular medications if you take Any
Warm Clothes To Carry for Trip During Winters In Himachal
During winters, temperatures drops several notches below during the night at places in Himachal which are above 2000m. The places between 1500m to 2000m also experience almost sub zero temperatures during the winters.
So to protect yourself from extreme cold during winters of Himachal, it is of utmost importance that you pack and choose your warm clothes carefully. Otherwise be prepared to suffer from brutal cold.
Layering is crucial during your winter trips to Himachal. Even a decent jacket which can endure negative temperatures may not be very useful without layering’s. So here is a list of warm clothes to pack for Himachal trip during winters.
1. A good winter jacket
A decent winter jacket which is kind of waterproof or water resistant and works in snow is necessary on your trips to Himachal during. Without a decent jacket which can sustain negative temperatures, you’ll have a harrowing time in my opinion
Ones which can endure at least -5 degrees are absolutely must. And in case if you are visiting high altitude valleys like Lahaul or Spiti, make sure you get one which can endure -10 degrees or you’ll need more layers.
As said earlier a good winter jacket alone will not suffice. You must layer yourself according to how much cold the place you are visiting and how much cold you personally are feeling at that very moment.
For all my trips to Himachal be it any season I make sure to carry my quechua winter jacket from Decathlon which really works well in temperatures upto -10 degrees.
2. Thermal Wear
Thermals for the whole body are absolutely necessary in winters. It can gives much needed protection to withstand the bone chilling temperatures during winters.
I personally make it point to carry thermals without fail on my trips to Himachal. So I would advise you to do the same.
3. Light woolen Jacket/Sweater
Light woolen in the form of sweater or hoodie kind of thing will act as one layer out of multiple layers you would need to wear during the winters.
So make sure you carry one or two layers depending on how much cold you feel typically.
4. Woolen socks
Again, a must have item especially winters. Feet and hands are the most exposed parts of body and during winters it is of utmost importance you have decent woolen socks to protect your feet from cold.
If you are traveling to high altitude valleys during winters, then in my opinion you must wear woolen socks to protect yourself from extreme cold and risking any kind of frostbite.
In the mid hills like Kasol, Manali, Dharmashala, you might get away with not wearing woolen socks during winters.
5. Woolen Cap and Gloves
Now a good woolen cap is a certainly a must during winters. You need to protect your ears from cold winds so that you don’t get sick.
Gloves are kind of optional if you are in mid hills. But you will most likely need them in high altitude valleys like Spiti or Lahaul if you are making a trip during winters.
By the way here are 47 hidden places in Kullu valley. They are absolutely beautiful and even more so when there is fresh snow.
What Clothes to Pack for A Winter Trip To Himachal
Whether you are a man or a woman, whatever you wear on your trips and in day to day life, you can definitely pack them. But do not pack n clothes for n days of your trip. You yourself will have to carry the burden. Also if you definitely do not compromise on your warm clothes for regular clothes during winters.
For men you can take trousers, hiking pants, or Jeans and shirts and Tshirts. Women can take whatever they usually wear on their trips. Avoid Jeans or Denims if possible as they are not very comfortable when hiking or outdoors.
Experiencing winter and snowfall is one of the 31 promising reasons why Himachal can be one your ideal vacation destinations.
So 2-3 trousers will be enough for around 7-10 days trip. Even if you plan to stay longer, you can always wash your clothes instead of carrying more. And Of course, you can re use them if they don’t get very dirty. I always advise to carry few less clothes so have minimum weight.
And for those who love Denims or Jean, I would advise you against it. One of the main reasons is they are not very comfortable if you want hike around. And you have to walk a lot if you wish to see beautiful places in Himachal during winters.
Personally, I just carry 2 trouser/hiking pants I bought from Decathlon these days. Be it a week long trip or month long or more. And have completely given up on Jeans to be honest as these are much more comfortable to be very frank.
2. Shirts and Tshirts
So you can carry 4-5 Shirts or Tshirts or combination of both. And then also reuse it again. Again do not pack n different shirts or tshirts for n days as it is only going to add more wait to your luggage.
Personally, these days I only take 4 or 5 comfortable Tshirts with me as I do not want to carry unnecessary load on my back. And wash it every 5-7 days if I am on long trips.
Essential Items to Carry On Trip to Himachal During Winters
So these are some of the most important items need to carry on all your trips in Himachal. Missing these might result in a Chaotic kind of situation.
Ensure that you have packed these items before hand and also double before leaving home for the trip. By the way, here is detailed blog on how to find a place of stay in Himachali villages, in case you are someone who likes to explore rural places.
1. Government ID proof
So at place where you stay be it a hotel, hostel, guesthouse showing your Government Identify card is usually mandatory as they have to keep it for their records.
So Aadhar Card, Voter ID Card, Passport, Drivers License etc can suffice this requirement. I personally carry Aadhar and Pancard with me all the time on my trips.
Now in todays world, carrying less or almost no cash you can get away with. Most of the people have gpay or paytm through which you can transfer the money online.
But carry a bit of cash is what I’ll always advise. Because you might not find ATM’s everywhere in Himachal. Only the main towns of Himachal have ATM’s. So even if you are going to a kind lesser frequented place you might not find ATM.
3. Mobile Phone
Again, this one is a no brainer. In todays time we are so dependent on mobile phones, that forgetting them could result into a nightmare.
So always make sure before leaving, that you have your mobile phone with you.
4. Power Bank
Power Bank is one of those essential things that always comes in handy during dire situations. As I said earlier we live in an age where living even a few minutes without is unimaginable. So you surely do not want your mobile phone to run out of battery.
And In Himachal power cuts are quite frequent even when it snows or rains slightly. Or you might on a hike or trekking. So a good long lasting power bank is an absolute must in my opinion.
If you are photographer or love clicking pictures, your DSLR is the one thing you cannot forget about. So just your photography and videography gear before hand in order to avoid any last minute mishaps.
6. Day Pack
Day pack is one the things which comes in very handy during excursions. A small 10 litre will suffice your needs. You can carry a 1 litre bottle, some food items, plus some other miscellaneous items you might need on your hikes and day trips
I personally always carry a 10 litre Quecheua Day pack from Decathlon. And I usually carry it on my long day hikes or day trips in the mountains.
7. Water Bottle
Wasting your money on plastic water bottles is not worth especially with such good quality water available naturally in the mountains.
So I personally have stopped buying plastic water bottles long back and only refill my personal water bottle on my every trip to Himachal. And I’ll also advice you to do the same. Trust me its not that hard.
Also the less plastic we use the more better it will be for the environment. And here are 12 such effective ways to travel responsibly in Himachal.
Footwear You Need To Carry For Your Himachal Trip During Winters
Footwear becomes quite important during your trip to Himachal in winters. You need proper shoes if you are going to hike and be in snow for a long time.
So here I am suggesting you footwear you need to carry on your trip to Himachal during winters. By the way here is detailed blog on how safe Is it safe to explore remote villages in Himachal all alone. This will be quite useful who love to tread on off the beaten path all alone.
1. Flip Flops or Sandals
Now I’ll only recommend using Flip Flops or Sandals whenever you are roaming around the place you are staying. These are not to be used while on hiking.
Of course, you can skip them as well. But it becomes a little inconvenient when you are resting in your hotel, hostel or just venturing out nearby to wear shoes every time.
2. Normal shoes
Normal shoes come in very handy when you are exploring different places in Himachal on foot. These can be anything from Sport shoes to the ones which wear normally. Of course, they should be comfortable.
I personally just bought a quechua shoes which are sort of hiking shoes but not trekking shoes but has good grip and is worth the price of day hikes and walks. And they are indeed quite comfortable and has better grip than most of the sports shoe.
But please note one thing, they are absolutely not effective when walking in snow or rain. Which is a common phenomenon at most of places during winter. And your feet will get all wet if you use it in snow or rain.
So you can probably use them only when you are sure that you are going to be in wet or snowy condition for hours.
3. Hiking/trekking shoes
If you are planning hike at the places you intend to visit during winters in Himachal, you must posses a good pair of waterproof hiking or trekking shoes.
The reason being, it is very difficult to get a good grip in snow patches with normal snow shoes. Also, normal shoes will get all wet if you walk on snow which can be really dangerous during winters.
So if you are going to hike and trek in snow, then it is quintessential you have water proof hiking or trekking shoes, You really do not want your feet to get wet during winters. It can result in serious issues.
Toiletries To Pack For Himachal Trip In Winters
Well, again this is quite obvious. Usually everybody who goes on trip somewhere usually packs soaps, shampoos, moisturizer, sanitizer etc. Especially when staying at budget places in Himachal where you don’t really expect to get these.
Except for may be a basic soap. You’ll have to carry all the other toiletries for your trip to Himachal. Women can carry their menstrual hygiene products for a hassle free Himachal trip during winters.
By the way here is a detailed blog on which mobile network works best in Himachal. I am sure this will be quite useful to you.
1. Hand sanitizer
Well, Hand sanitizer has become integral part of our lives due to the pandemic. But when on a trip, Hand sanitizer is the best way to keep your hands clean. And to have the trip in perfect health.
So I always make it point to carry hand sanitizer when on trips to Himachal and you should too. Plus if you stay in budget hostels, hotels, guesthouses chances are you wont the Toiletries so better to carry your own.
2. Tooth Paste and Tooth Brush
Well this is a no brainer. All of us usually carry our own tooth paste and brushes to keep our dental hygiene. Again, its always better to carry these items.
Due to dry and cold weather in mountains., skin usually becomes dry. So to avoid the dryness of skin I would recommend you to carry a moisturizer.
Moisturizer becomes all the more important during winter trips to Himachal thanks to harsh cold. So do not forget to pack moisturizer for you trips to Himachal during winters.
I end up getting tanned on all of my trips to the Himalayas. So in order to avoid that you can take sunscreen along with you.
Plus during the winters one tends to inadvertently take sun baths on a clearly sunny which of course will result in more tanning. So make sure you carry one.
Of course, without sunscreen when you are back home, it will just to a bit of time for the tanning to wane off. And don’t expect that you’ll get sunscreen at the place you are staying so better to buy one before hand.
5. Soap or Bodywash Or Shampoo
Most of the budget stays do not provide Soap, bodywash, facewash, Shampoo. So you should be carrying these before hand.
Of course, basic things like these will be available in the shops of Himachal , but its always better to carry them beforehand to avoid any hassles during the trip.
Medicines and First Aid Kit To Pack For A Winter Trip To Himachal
Carrying a first aid kit and a few basic medicines for common ailments like Fever, headache, cold, diarrhea.
And of course any other medicines that you regularly take is necessary as you might not get specific medicines if you are in remote place of Himachal.
By the way do you wish to become a digital nomad living in Himachal? Here is a practical guide on becoming a digital nomad living in Himachal.
1. First Aid Kit
Whenever on a trip its always beneficial to carry a first aid kit comprising of band aids, antiseptics like Detol or Savlon, and other things required to dress up a wound in case of any external injuries.
Along with the above mentioned things, you should also carry basic medicines for common ailments like Cold, Fever, Headache, Diarrhea.
2. Dolo Tablet
It is one of the tablets you can use if you have Fever, Headache, Cold or you have some kind of pain. Dolo is basically paracetamol along with a pain killer.
But in case you symptoms still persist even after taking Dolo, then you should probably consult a doctor. Getting to a doctor becomes hard and decent medical services are only available in major towns of Himachal.
If you are someone you has the problem of motion sickness, then taking Avomine can certainly make sure you don’t face such issues when on serpentine mountain roads.
So in my opinion, you should always carry Avomine with you to avoid motion sickness. But please consult once before with your doctor.
4. Pain relief Sprays
Again this is kind of obvious. When hiking outdoors there are high chances that somebody might have some external injuries due to demanding hike.
So such pain relief sprays can be immediately applied topically to alleviate the pain in case of any external injuries. It is always handy to carry them on your trips especially to the mountains
5. Regular Medications if you Take any
If you are taking any medications for any other ailments, then make sure you also carry them you are on your trip To Himachal during winters. Certain medicines may not be available.
So it is better that you carry it beforehand. And continue taking your regular medicines if any to avoid any health on your Himachal Trip.
To conclude, I hope you now have a consolidated what to pack for Himachal trip in winters. In my opinion, do not carry unnecessary stuff and clothes which will increase the weight of your luggage. Packing light always ensures a hassle free trip.
Also make sure you carry enough warm clothes. In case you have any queries on things to pack for a Himachal trip in winters, do let me know in the comments and I’ll be to happy to help.