Arrive in Manali. Today you have the option of taking it easy in Manali. One can roam around the local market, visit a famous temple and check out other sightseeing spots in and around Manali. Also you can decide to just laze around at the hotel. Overnight in a hotel.
This day you start on one of the greatest road trip on the planet. You will be riding on the famous Manali – Leh highway and reach Jispa today. Ahead of Manali you will cross the famous Rohtang Pass (3980m), with excellent views of the Pir Panjal range. You will stop here for some photography. This pass is open only during a few summer months every year. From here you descend to the Chandra River and ride to the quaint village of Jispa. Overnight in a hotel/guesthouse
Today you will ride to Sarchu via the Baralacha La (4892m). It’s a double pass linking both the upper Chandra and Bhaga valleys with the Lingti valley and the vast Lingti plains around Sarchu. Sarchu is inhabited by Himalayan clan, Gaddi, and few lonely soldiers at an army outpost. Overnight stay in a good quality fixed camp in tents.
Like the previous days you will be riding through some breathtaking scenery on your way to Leh, en route you will be crossing two high – passes, Lachlung La (5065m) and Tanglang La (5360m), the third highest motorable pass in the world. Also you will ride through the vast More plains and 22 loops, both very unique. Late in the afternoon you enter the Indus valley passing the beautiful village of Rumtse and arrive at Leh, capital of Ladakh. Check into the hotel for overnight stay.
Today you start exploring the Indus valley. You will ride to Shey, Thiksey and Hemis gompa (monastery) accompanied by a local guide loaded with information on the history and practices of these gompas. Return to the hotel for lunch. Rest of the day at leisure for exploring the local market and shopping. Overnight in a hotel.
Shey Gompa is about 15 kms from Leh. It used to be the summer palace of the kings of Ladakh. There are lots of Stupas and Gompas built around the palace. Shey palace was built by Deldan Namgyal in the beginning of 17th century AD. Main attraction in Shey is the 12m Shakyamuni Buddha statue inside the Dresthang Gompa.
Thiksey Gompa, close to Shey is about 17 kms from Leh. The monastery is considered to be one of the most beautiful in Ladakh and belongs to the Gelukspa order.
Hemis, about 45 kms south of Leh it is one of the most famous and largest monastery in Ladakh. It belongs to the Drukpa order and was founded in the early 17th century. The setting is perfect, with the monastery cradled in a lovely valley, surrounded by streams and fronted by long mani walls. Optional: For people looking for some adventure we can organise a good rafting trip on the Indus river which is suitable for first timers and gives a beautiful & unique perspective to this magical landscape. This will take around 3-4 hours(Charges extra)
Today you will set out on a 2 day overland riding exploration trip to the Nubra Valley (meaning Valley of Flowers in local language). You will ride from Leh to the Khardung La pass (5602m), the second highest motorable pass in the world. On a clear day views of Indus valley below are phenomenal. The villages of the valley are extremely pretty and characterised by greenery, willow & poplar trees. Also this valley has the distinction of being one of the trade centres on the ancient Silk Route. You will stop at village of Diskit and visit the local monastery. Overnight in fixed camp/guesthouse.
After breakfast you ride across the Khardung La again to reach Leh. In the evening, explore the local markets. Overnight in a hotel.
They say Ladakh trip is not complete till you visit one of the 3 high altitude lakes here – Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri and Tso Kar. So to give an exciting end to the trip we head towards the lake. You will embark on a memorable ride to the mesmerising high altitude lake of Pangong Tso. We will start early and take about 6 hrs to reach the lake. Riding along the Indus river we will cross the Chemrey gompa, green cultivated fields, typical Ladakhi houses and hairpin bends before reaching the fourth highest motorable pass in the world, Chang La (5320m). From here we descend to the lake. Nothing prepares you for the first sight of the Pangong Tso lake. Its seemingly unreal beauty will take some time to sink in. With crystal clear turquoise blue water and stark mountain ranges all around it’s truly a captivating sight. One third of the lake is in India while the rest two thirds of the lake is in Tibet. Today we will stay in a beautiful deluxe campsite. Overnight in the camp.
After breakfast, we will start riding back to Leh. Evening at leisure. Overnight in a hotel
Another beautiful ride towards Kargil keeps the adventure going. On this day we will witness the excellent confluence of Zanskar and Indus. Its another wonderful ride from Leh all the way to Kargil. Overnight in a guest house
Meal Plan – B, D
From Kargil ride through Zozilz paa, Sonamarg to reach Srinagar.
The trip ends here.
DAY 01: Arrival in Manali Rest/Exploration
DAY 02: Manali Jispa (3200m) Riding 135 kms/4-5 hrs
DAY 03: Jispa Sarchu (4253m) Riding 95 kms/4-5 hrs
DAY 04: Sarchu Leh (3500m) Riding 233 kms/8-9 hrs
DAY 05: Leh (3500m) sightseeing Riding
DAY 06: Leh Khardung La (5602m) Hunder (4000m) Riding /5-6 hrs
DAY 07: Hunder Samstanling gompa in Sumoor) Leh (4000m) Riding /6 hrs
DAY 08: Leh Chang La (5320m) Pangong Tso (4350m) Riding /5-6 hrs
DAY 09: Pangong Tso (4350m) - Leh (3500m) Riding /5-6 hrs return trip
Day 10: Leh Sarchu Riding Riding /6-7 hrs
Day 11: Sarchu Manali Riding /6-7 hrs
Day 12: Manali departure Trip end here
This exciting overland trip has it all. On this voyage you traverse through some of the most bizarre and surrealistic landscape, travelling at an average altitude of more than 3,500m. This one is surely one of the highest road trips that one can take on planet Earth. You will visit regions which till recently were cut off for tourists, and are steeped in rich culture and history. Also it offers a great opportunity to interact with the beautiful people of this land. Ladakh has such a distinct character of its own, that it hits one very hard with its stark beauty. Every day our preconceived ideas of mountain beauty are challenged by the wonderful landscapes of this arid cold desert region in the high Himalayas. Ladakh with its snow-capped mountains, deep gorges, alluvial fans and ancient monasteries is a mystical land and offers one great pleasures while riding through its landscapes.
This Mother of all Road trips starts from the beautiful hill town of Manali where you spend a night. This journey involves traversing through the Greater Himalayas and crossing a number of high passes beginning with the Rohtang pass (3,978 m). From Manali you pass through Keylong, headquarters of the Lahaul area, to reach Jispa. From Jispa you ride to Sarchu via the Baralacha Pass (4883 m) over the Zingzingbar plains. From here one can view the Mulkila and Barashigra peaks. In the next stage you ride through the Lachlung La (5065m) and Tanglang La (5306 m) passes and from there descend to the beautiful Indus valley to reach Leh.
The last leg of this road trip would involve exploring the Nubra valley and riding to the spectacular Pangong Tso (lake). Nubra is an incredible valley which till recently was completely cut off for travellers. It is a Buddhist region north of Leh across the 5602m Khardung La Pass, the second highest motorable pass in the world, and the route to the highest battlefield in the world, the Siachen Glacier. This valley also known as the valley of flowers was on the former trade route between Tibet and Turkistan. We finish this exciting voyage with a road trip to the high altitude lake at Pangong Tso. This lake and the surroundings are surely going to leave you spell bound with its beauty. The trip finishes on the next day at Leh and one can either take a flight for Delhi or a shared cab for Manali. Also one can extend the trip by a few days if required