Highlights of the trip:
1. A road trip in the Himalayan desert of Ladakh. Astounding passes and fertile valleys, snowcapped mountains and quaint villages will be your constant companion, that is, apart from an awesome set of co-travelers.
2. Offbeat curated stays like campsites in Mulbek and Pangong Tso with incomparable views. The blues of Pangong or the lush green alpine mountain slopes are sights you cannot forget too easily, even if you try. Alternatively, we would stay in a hotel in Leh, and a lovely homestay at Srinagar, for a more local flavour to the trip.
3. Adventures like village walks, and river side trails. Experiences, experiences, experiences; many of them are guided and many more will be the ones you find along the way.
4. Architecture, monasteries, and local culture; whether it’s a cup of tea shared with locals or a quiet moment spent in a distant monastery watching a monk pray, whether it’s marveling at the bright colours that adorn these structures or wondering how they keep warm in the -50 degree weather conditions. Curiosity knows no bounds and our drivers will have the answers to most of your queries if not all.
5. Homestay experience in Ladakh gives you an insight into the Ladakhi way of life. These basic stays will let you explore the culture, the local food, and the typical Ladakh lifestyle. Perhaps you can assist them in their day-to-day activities or learn their way of living.
6. Tour the dizzying passes of Khardungla and Chang La. These passes range from 13000 ft above sea level to 18380 ft (for Khardungla). You’ll literally be on top of the world!
Day 1. Srinagar (day at leisure)
Land at Srinagar and get a transfer to your homestay. Settle in and soak in the sun on the family lawn. Then head out to explore the city. The old city, the neighbouring markets and a quintessential Kashmiri meal is a must! That’s the plan in Srinagar as we gear up for the road trip ahead!
Driving distance: 7 kms
Driving time: 45 mins
Day 2. Srinagar-Mulbek
An early start from Srinagar will take us to Kargil, Drass (the second coldest inhabited place in the world), Tiger Hill and then to Shargol village near Mulbek where we’ll be camping tonight.
Driving distance: 240 kms
Driving time: 8-9 hours
Meals: Breakfast I Dinner
Day 3: Mulbek to Leh via Lamayuru and Alchi Monastery
Post breakfast, we head out for our road trip to Leh. Our first stop is Lamayuru Monastery in Sham Valley after which we’ll explore the oldest monastery of Alchi and ultimately stop in Leh.
Leh is a beautiful city, nestled in the Indus Valley. The Shanti Stupa and the Leh Palace form a formidable backdrop to the city and the roads that leave the city lead you to Srinagar in one direction and Manali in the other. Leh welcomes you with a warm glass of ginger honey lemon tea and it takes very little to fall in love with this city.
Travel distance: 173 kms
Travel time: 8 hours
Stay: Beautiful hotel overlooking the mountains
Day 4: Leh
Get to Leh and relax during your stay, allow your body to acclimatize to the sudden change in altitude. In Leh, you will be staying in a comfortable hotel away from the main market (a short 10-15 minute walk away to be precise). It is closer to the Shanti Stupa and gives you some great views of snow-clad peaks.
Experience: Settle into Leh, go for local walks and get accustomed to the habitation
Day 5: Leh to Hunder via Khardungla and back to Leh
Head out to the beautiful Nubra Valley! Your day incorporates the winding climb of Khardungla, coupled with lemon tea from the canteen there and a downward descend to Nubra, where you will pass the sand dunes of Hunder. Valley, snow peaks, frozen rivers and deserts in one single day. Need we say more?
Stop at the Diskit Monastery on the way back, to enjoy the spectacular views that it offers.
Travel distance: 130 kms
Travel time: 6-7 hours
Experience: Day trip to Hunder, Nubra Valley. Pass Khardungla, which at 17580 ft is the highest motorable road in the world
Day 6: Leh to Pangong
A five-hour drive and a visit to the monastery of Thiksey, you will pass by Chang La to reach the great Pangong Lake. The blues of the lake will leave you stumped; the beauty is legendary and rightfully so. Stay in a campsite with beautiful Swiss tents on the banks of the Lake.
Travel time: 5.5 hours
Experience: Camping near the banks of the Pangong Lake
Meals: Breakfast I Dinner
Day 7: Pangong Lake to Leh
Return back to Leh. If you haven’t visited any of the monasteries on the way to the Lake, you can do it on your way back.
Travel time: 5.5 hours
Experience: Visit Hemis Monastery, visit local cafes for meals and try out different cuisines.
Day 8: Leh
Return back home with a bag full of memories!
- Meals mentioned
- Internal travel by Xylo/Tempo Traveler
- Accommodation on a double sharing basis in budgeted properties.
- Sightseeing according to an itinerary
- Meals not mentioned
- Flights to and fro
- Any activities not mentioned in the itinerary or ‘includes’
- Entry charges at museums, monuments, monasteries
- Personal expenses such as room service, tips etc.
- Any additional cost such as additional stay, extra days of transport etc. arising from a change of travel plans due to weather conditions, landslides, flight delays, strikes etc. which are beyond our reasonable control will have to be personally borne by the traveller.
- Things not mentioned in inclusions