Ladakh, is a barren yet beautiful mountainous region in the northwest of the north Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. Also known as the ‘Land of High Passes’, Ladakh lies between the Kunlun Mountains in the north and the Himalayas in the south, and shares its east border with Tibet, and the Kashmir valley to the west, that includes the upper Indus River valley. Although strategically placed on ancient trade routes, it is the least populated region of Jammu and Kashmir. Thus much of its natural and rustic splendor has been preserved, offering you spectacular views of its majestic snow capped mountains, clear blue skies, and beautiful valleys. Ladakh is a high altitude desert as the Himalayas create a rain shadow over it. Thus with no rainfall, the main source of water is the winter snowfall on the mountains. Temperatures in Ladakh range from 3 to 35°C in summer, and -20 to -35°C in winter, with some regions becoming inaccessible for several months due to heavy snowfall.
Discover the unexplored beauty of Ladakh with Apline Club of Himalaya’s 14-Day Ladakh tour. You will need to fly from Delhi to Leh. Leh, a picturesque town, is an excellent base for exploring Ladakh. From there we will tour several places such as Kargil, the second largest town, Nubra Valley, Choglamsar, a village with a large Tibetan community, and the Pangong and Tsomoriri lakes.
Important Note :
Your safety is of paramount importance to us at Alpine Club of Himalaya. We have the absolute authority to cancel the trip or change the itinerary, when deemed necessary or when we have reason to believe your safety is at stake. Weather conditions, the health condition of a group member, natural disasters, and such, can contribute to changes in the itinerary when traveling in remote mountainous regions. In these extreme situations, we kindly request that you offer your full co-operation to the trusted leader of the group appointed by Alpine Club of Himalaya. However, we assure you that we will make every effort to keep to the above itinerary.
Day 01: Arrival in Leh (3520m/11,545 ft)
At the Leh airport, you will be welcomed by a representative of Alpine Club of Himalaya. The rest of the day is free and easy, for you to rest, relax, and explore the nearby streets and bazaars of Delhi, India’s largest and capital city. In the evening, we will take a walking tour to the Leh Market and Shanti Stupa. Overnight in Leh.
Day 02: Leh to Nubra Valley (5,578 m/18,380 feet): 120 km, 4-5 hours
We drive to Nubra Valley via the Khardong La pass, claimed to be the world’s highest drivable road at at an elevation of 5,359 m (17,582 ft). Nubra Valley is a high altitude cold desert with the Siachen Glacier to the north, and the Sasser Pass and the famous Karakoram Pass to the northwest. We spend the rest of the day exploring Diskit, the capital of Nubra. Rest of the day we are free to explore Deskit, and its landmark 32 meter Maitreya Buddha statue, Hunder (the land of sand dunes) villages, and get on a camel safari. Overnight in Nubra Valley.
Day 03: Sightseeing in Nubra Valley, Drive back to Leh: 120 km, 4-5 hours
After breakfast, we visit Deskit Monastery, the oldest and largest Buddhist monastery in
Nubra Valley, founded in the 14th century. The monastery houses the Maitreya Buddha statue and a number of shrines, and Mongolian and Tibetan
texts. We drive back to Leh via the same route.
Upon arrival at Leh, we visit Shey Monastery and Palace, mostly in ruins now, built in 1655 by the king of Ladakh, near the Shey village. The monastery has a Shakyamuni Buddha statue that is 12 meters (39 ft) in height covering three floors of the monastery. Then we visit Thikshey Monastery, the largest monastery in Ladakh, with twelve stories and ten temples, famous for its architecture and location atop a hill, and Leh Palace, a nine-storey royal palace built in the 17 century and modeled after the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet.
Overnight in Leh.
Day 04: Leh to Pangong Tso Lake (4420 m/14500 ft) 150 km, 4-5 hours
We take a 5-hour drive to Pangong Tso via a rough mountain road through the Shey and Gya villages, and the Changla pass (17,350 ft), claimed to be the second highest motorable road in the world. The Pangong Tso Lake, Tibetan for “high grassland lake”, is situated at a height of about 14,500ft in the Himalaya
s and is the highest salt water lake in the world, shared both by India and China. The road down from Changla Pass leads through a river called Pagal Naala or “The Crazy Stream”. The spectacular lakeside is open during the tourist season, from May to September. Overnight at Pangong Tso Lake (Camp).
Day 05: Pangong Tso Lake to Alchi: 200 km, 5-6 hours
We drive to Alchi, a village on the bank of the Indus river, famous for the Alchi Monastery, a monastery complex built, according to local tradition, by the great translator Guru Rinchen Zangpo between 958 and 1055. The artistic and spiritual details of both Buddhism and the Hindu kings of that time in Kashmir are reflected in the wall paintings in the monastery. En-route we visit places such as the Basgo Palace, Liker Monastery, Gurudwara Pathar Sahib and Magnetic Hill. Overnight in Alchi.
Day 06: Alchi to Kargil 160 km, 5-6 hours
We leave for Kargil, a quiet town that once served as an important trade and transit centre in the Pan-Asian trade network. The second largest town in Ladakh, Kargil has an average elevation of 2,676m (8,780 feet), and is situated along the banks of the Suru River. En-route we visit places such as the Lamayaru Moonland, moonlike landscapes carved into the Greater Himalayas along the Lamayaru village, the Lamayuru Monastery, the oldest monastery in Ladakh uniquely built on a rise that looked more like hardened sand dunes and not at all like a rock, and the Giant Maitreya Golden Buddha at Mulbekh. Overnight in Kargil.
Day 07: Kargil to Padum: 250 km, 7-8 hours
We drive to Padum, the only town and administrative centre in Zanskar, named after Padmasambhav. En-route we are welcomed by the magnificent view of the Nun Kun Peak, a pair of Himalayan peaks separated by a snowy plateau of about 4 km (2.5 mi) in length, and Drang-Drung Glacier, the largest glacier in Ladakh with a maximum length of 23 kilometres (14 mi) at an average elevation of 4,780 m (15,680 feet). Then we visit the Rangdum Monastery, a Tibetan Buddhist monastery situated on top of a small but steep sugarloaf hill at an altitude of 4,031 m (13,225 ft) at the head of the Suru Valley. Overnight in Padum.
Day 08: Sightseeing in Padum
We tour places such as Karsha Monastery, the largest monastery in Zanskar that has a number of shrines embellished with exquisite paintings by the Lama Dzadpa Dorje, Stongdey Monastery founded in 1052 by Naropa’s disciple, and the Sani Monastery, thought to be the oldest religious site in Ladakh. Overnight in Padum.
Day 09: Padum to Kargil: 250 km, 7-8 hours
Drive back to Kargil via Pensi La Pass, known as the Gateway to Zanskar, at 4,400 m (14,436 ft) above sea level, with a view of the Glacial lake and the Drang-Drung Glacier. Overnight in Kargil.
Day 10: Kargil to Leh: 230 km
Drive back to Leh. Overnight in Leh.
Day 11: Leh to Chumthang to Tso Moriri Lake: 240 km, 7-8 hours
We begin the journey to Tso Moriri Lake and stop along the Chumathang village to visit the hot springs. Arrive at Tso Moriri at 4pm. The Tso Moriri Lake is located on the Changthang Plateau at an altitude of 4,522m (14,836 ft), and is the largest of the high altitude lakes in Ladakh and in India. Overnight at Tso Moriri Lake (Camp).
Day 12: Tsomoriri to Sumdo to Leh: 235 km
We walk around the lake and drive back to Leh passing places such as the Puga (Sulphur Mine), Tsokar Lake, Tanglang La Pass (17,585ft) and Rumtse. On the way, we visit Hemis Monastery, Shey Palace, and Thiksey Monastery. Overnight in Leh.
Day 13: Light and Easy in Leh
You can spend the day exploring the market places of Leh, or just rest and relax. Overnight in Leh.
Day 14: Leh to Delhi
A representative of Alpine Club of Himalaya will take you to the airport for your flight to Delhi.
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