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Ladakh Trip

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Posted on: Monday, 18 May 2020

Ladakh, Buddhist prayers mystical Chants, Lakes(Tsomos), Rugged mountains and full of adventures is Ladakh. The adventure seekers must visit once in lifetime.

Traveling alone is the best thing in the scenic North Indian Union Territory of Ladakh. It is a romantic place, so honeymooners can go to Ladakh to enjoy the beauty of rugged mountains, valleys, lakes, and Buddhist monasteries. Mountain sports like biking is very attractive adventurous activity here.

It takes at least 7 days to visit Ladakh. April to June is the best time to visit, you can go in the months of July and August also. Whenever you go, 1st two days you have to keep for acclimatization, since you are going at a minimum height of 3000 meters (9800 feet) above sea level.

It is better to avoid Winter Seasons because it becomes very cold. In January, the average day temperature is -3 degree Celsius and at night temperature drops down to-15 degree Celsius. Moreover, in winter the Roads from Srinagar and Manali to Leh are closed due to ice.

There are two ways to reach Ladakh:

1. By road - a) From Delhi it is 1023 Kms. and takes nearly 21 Hrs. to reach. b) From Manali it is 472 Kms. by road and takes nearly 11 Hrs.

2. By Air - From Delhi, regular flights are there, generally flights reach in the morning or early afternoon. By air it is 617 km. from Delhi. 

I will suggest reaching Leh by Flight from Delhi. The 7-day itinerary will give you a glimpse of some of the attractive highlights of the region and you will feel why this trip is unique and special.

Day 1 - Reach Leh and take a rest.

Day 2. - A light tour of Leh city.

Day 3. - Via Khardungla Pass visit Nubra Valley.

Day 4. - Visit the famous Pangong Lake.

Day 5. - Return to Leh city via Chang La.

Day 6. - Visit Leh Town and do shopping.

Day 7. - Return from Ladakh.

Details of Itinerary:-

Day 1. - Reach Leh and take rest - Reach Leh in the morning by flight from Delhi and take rest to acclimatize your body with the high altitude Ladakh, nearly 3000 meters above Sea level. The process of acclimation can take 24 to 48 hrs., so take it easy for the 1st two days, take rest as much as possible, and take water in large amounts to be hydrated. Try to avoid any physical activity, and enjoy the views of Ladakh from the hotel and explore Ladakhi foods and make yourself ready for the next day. Where to stay: The Gangba Guesthouse run by a local family, they will give warm reception and you could enjoy delicious local foods, and feel comfortable due to their hospitality.

Day 2. Light tour of Leh city - On this day also acclimation process will continue, go around the amazing Leh city and local sightseeing. and take lunch in the Tibetan Restaurant. Your first stop will be 35 Km. away from Leh city, the mighty confluence of Zanskar and Indus river. It will be worth seeing since the green colors of different shades of the waters of rivers are clearly visible with bare eyes. You can go down to the confluence point or can have the views from the top.

The next spot is Magnetic hill, a small stretch on the Kargil-Leh highway. The spot is popular among tourists where gravitational forces can be defied, due to a magnetic pull from the nearby mountains.

The next visit is at Leh Palace, the former residence of the Royal family, perched up to a hill, 7-storied building, now being converted into a museum, will get a birds-eye view of the Leh city.

In the evening leisurely visit the colorful bustling market at the city center, main Bazaar of Leh, and collect Tibetan prayer flags and wheels or silver jewelry.

Day 3. - Via Khardungla Pass visit Nubra Valley - The road is curvy and rough so for a comfortable journey takes a well-trained driver and a good conditioned vehicle. Some stretches of Roads are steep and bumpy, so be careful in selecting the driver and vehicle. The cost of transport is very high in Ladakh, so try for a shared Taxi. The journey is for about 5-6 hours.

The main attraction is to climb Khardung La ( In Ladakhi La is used for a mountain pass) and crossing it gives the wonderful view of the other side of the Ladakh mountain range. It is considered to be one of the highest (5359 M) motorable roads in the world. Spend 1/2 an hour without stretching your body much and explore the surroundings, the amazing, spectacular views of the snow-carved mountains. The Oxygen level is very low to breathe at this height, so be very careful. as soon as you cross the Khardung La, the views dramatically changed.

After crossing Shyok River you will see the Green valley of Nubra and you will be spellbound. It will be around the afternoon you will check-in at the hotel. After checking in go for the famous Hunder dunes to catch the sunset view, with herds of Bactrian camels for accompanying. These camels are native to the region and have the ability to withstand high altitude and heavy cold. The landscape here is equally fascinating, to say the least, with rolling sand dunes as far as the eyes can see, enclosed by towering rocky mountains on all sides. Fascinating landscape, with rolling sand dunes enclosed by towering rocky mountains on all sides, will be worth seeing.

Where to stay in Nubra Valley - Hotel Stone Hedge Ladakh, 10 minutes away from Hunder Sand Dunes, a gorgeous luxurious hotel.

Day - 4. - Visit the famous Pangong Lake - After checking out from the hotel go to visit Diskit Monastery, the oldest and largest Monastery in Nubra Valley, the iconic statue of the Maitreya Buddha stands tall at a height of 32 meters, alternatively you can visit the Dunes once again during daylight and then start for Pangong Lake.

It is about 6 hours journey and takes you through the picturesque mountain roads. Throw-out the journey Shyok River is on one side and takes you to a height of 4350 meters (where Pangong Lake is situated) from 3048 meters. Pangong TSO (TSO meaning in Ladakhi is Lake) is a saline water lake that spreads across India and Tibet. 60% of it is in Tibet. But it takes 3 hours to drive along its coast along the Indian side, so you can imagine how big the lake is. Popular for its colorful stunning turquoise blue water Pangong TSO is one of the major attractions of Ladakh. Completely freeze in the winter season, and from June to August, its water is colorful.

After reaching Pangong TSO you book your accommodation first, then in the evening you stroll near the lake or sit at one of the restaurants enjoy the view while taking Hot Tea. As soon as it Sunsets, it becomes chilly so keep winter clothes with you, and get ready to snuggle in for the night.

Here there are no permanent hotels, only temporary wooden huts with all facilities like Towels, Western Toilet, warm blankets, and charging points are there. They also arrange warm meals in a separate hut cum dining space, that food will warm you after a long cold day.

Day -5. - Return to Leh city via Chang La. - This is the last day of driving through Ladakh, but don't think it is less exciting than the previous ones. The journey from Pangong to Leh takes 6 hours and will take you to Chang La, the mountain pass situated at a height of 5360 meters. It will be an incredible experience of going to the top of the Pass.

On the way from Chang La to Leh, another long and rich history Monastery will come i.e. Hemis Monastery, it houses a museum also. It is considered to be one of the largest Monasteries in Ladakh, the main attraction is a huge statue of Guru Rinpoche and the Monasteries architecture.

Day - 6. - Visit Leh Town and do shopping - Start your day in the early morning and reach Thiksey Monastery before 7 A. M. and go to prayer hall without disturbing the Monks, as the sun rises the monks begin their day by chanting rhythmically Buddhist mantras - which is an experience you will never forget.

As a part of the Peace Pagoda Mission, the Shanti Stupa was constructed by the Buddhists of Ladakh and Japan jointly. Visit the Stok Palace, the Royal family's summer home, currently, the Royal family lives here. It houses several museums showcasing artifacts of the Royal family. A part of it converted into a heritage hotel where you can experience the Royal way of living.

Next, you visit Chulli Bagh, the Royal family's orchard, with walnut and apricot trees, dominate the scenes. Enjoy Luxurious meals amidst the lush greenery accompanied by fresh fruits from the Garden.

Now it's time to return Hotel and watch a cultural dance program by the Ladakhi men and women, it has a rich culture of folk dances native to different parts of the region.

Day - 7. - Return from Ladakh - This is a day of no activity, depending on the time of flight you can visit the local market or can visit any village for a glimpse of the Ladakhi lifestyle. Go to Airport well in time and catch the flight and reach Delhi.

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