Leh Laddakh Trip

Leh Laddakh Trip

Laddakh has been one of the most famous destinations for adventure lovers, especially for bikers.  Recently I have been there and I am sharing my experience.

There are two ways to reach laddakh and road is opened in June only for six months approx.  (In JK region, only postpaid SIM works and preferable BSNL has good coverage areas while journey. So I would advice to make arrangement accordingly. Some areas have Airtel coverage to. In Cities, you will not face any issues much. Also ensure that you have sufficient cash inhand as Cards may not work at most of the places due to network issues and internet is rare thing. You may have mobile towers all the way if you go lucky.)

Manali to Leh
 Srinagar to Leh via Kargil
Later is more prefered over former due to favoring conditions. Though its all depends on your plan.

Day 1 : Srinagar

Avoid visiting local sites seeing. Ensure you utilitse this time in your planning for upcoming journey.

Bikes are available at rent starting from 800 to 1400 per day rent excluding petrol.

Usually bike owner provide all necessary item required if u rent it, but sometimes skip the essential items. Here are the list of items which must be in your bag pack every time with you wherever you travel.

Warm hand gloves
Spare polythene big enough to cover all your belongings.
Locking rope to tie luggage
Ensure your bike has bike stand,
spare cane for petrol approx a liter each, 2 nos
Tyre puncture repair kit and ensure you gain experience in the same.
Warm cloths- it would better if you choose water proof jackets which can be wear in winter as well as monsoon. This will eliminate need of raincoat.
Enough pairs of socks, at least 4 to 5 as they may get wet.
Leg guard and elbow guard
Water bottle
Ready to eat snacks
Post paid SIM card preferably BSNL,
Demoxin tablet, ensure you take it approx 24 hr prior to journey. It is necessary as at high altitude there may be oxygen deficiency and you may feel breathing problem. To overcome this, this can be taken after prior doctor consultation. Moreover, due to lack of oxygen, your bikes ignition may not take place proper, So you may have hard time pulling your bullets for some distance. This is less likely to happen but there are chances for the same
You may find shooting stone zone. Ensure helmet and proper safety while driving.

Day 2 : Srinagar to Kargil  (202 Km)

Only hurdle is Zozila pass. Approx 30 km road is too rocky that your odometer will hardly hit upto 15 km/hr, no matter which type of vehicle u have. If you got unlucky,  it may rain too. Better keep raincoat and spare polythene to cover your belongings.

First milestone is Sonamarg. You may have light snacks and tea here and also lunch as per timing.

There may be stoppage at Drass as they allow only few vehicles from both sides at fixed interval of time. Bikers may find their way. If you are in 4 wheeler, you may find longer waiting time for the gate to be opened. Ensure you have driving license as there will be checking at this post only.  If luckily you cross the drass, you may reach Kargil by same day. You may stay in camp or hotel for night stay. Camp would be better experience. Ensure you fill your tanks at this place for upcoming journey.  Day 1 journey of 200 km you may complete in 7 to 8 hours.

Day 3 : Kargil to Leh ( 217 Km)

Condition is far better than the previous day. Well build roads and smooth curve flavours your ride. There are View points like magnetic hill and 3 rivers junction point. At peak of the mountain, you may have best photography with your bikes and group.

At magnetic hill, you may have scooter ride on hill which may cost you 500 per person and two people on a scooter. There is good cafeteria too. You can have refreshments there. Again the smooth curves and lovely montains surrounded you, will lead to Leh city.

You may have refreshments and food at lamayuru which is famous for full moon night view.

Day 4 : Leh

You may find leh main market for all your needs. You can have shopping here with your best bargaining tricks as things are overpriced here. You may enjoy indian , tibatian food in may restaurents.

Enjoy your day resting and fun as there will be harder things ahead.

You may visit local tibbat market for shopping which has variety of very good items for all age group.

Get your cloaths washed and dried. You can easily get laundry service. Prepare expenditures and budget for next round. Ensure you have sufficient inhand cash for trip.

Day 5 : Leh to Pangong lake. (150km)

Pangong is asia’s most beautiful lake. Water is crystal clear and during a particular time of the day , you may see three colors on lake water. It is truely heaven on the earth.

But nothing is as easy as it looks. You have harder time than the day one. You need to cross flowing water, desert sand, rocky roads and rainy ways to be evident of the natural beauty.

Before starting journey, ensure you got local permit to visit, which can be obtained from leh through local vendors. It may cost you 600 to 800 per person. Few years back there were no such charges. Infact there is no permit required for indian citizen to roam around anywhere in country. Infact, these charges were removed by gov. But due to local vendors protest, it was again imposed, which earn them enough. In between there will be nominal visiting charges of 20 rs per person for which no prior purchase required.

At Durbuk, you may have your lunch or refreshment. There are plenty of good options available.

Tangtse is most critical area of concern. You will definitely find raining here. So ensure you have proper arrangement as per. Best time to cross it is early morning as during day time due to melting of ice, water flow may be too heavy that you may not support your bullets in flowing water. During morning, melting of ice is minimal which flavors the situation. Though it is not easy to cross the hurdle. Ensure that you are alert and strong enough to compensate dis-balance. It is approx 30 to 40 km distance with such problems.

Finally you are at lukund. Famous 3 idiots shooting point situated here. You may find some items related to film like yellow scooters, poles and structure as seen in movie. Again it is photography point for some people. You may find number of tents and camps at pangong start from 4 to 5000 per night. It may be most wonderful experience of your life for sure.

Day 6 : Pangong to Nubra Vally (197 km)

Ensure you leave early morning to avoid flowing streamd due to melting ice.

You may have night stay at nubra.

Day 7 : Nubra to Turtuk Vally (162 km)

Day 8: Turtuk to Khardungla (164 km)

Turtuk to Kargil is hardly 100 km, but due to local people, oppose, this road was never built. So one had to travel more than 400 km to reach Kargil from turtuk. I think government should take initiative and look into this matter which can save lot of travelling time. By this way, you can directly travel from Kargil to turtuk and then to nubra, followed by Khardungla and leh. But in present scenario, one has to reach to leh twice. Only reason, business.

Day 8 ; Khardungla to Leh  (40)

Day 9: Leh City Tour

Help them to grow their business.

There is famous Leh Fort listed in heritage sites of india. It is 15 to 20 min walking distance from main market. There is photography exhibition and Video tutorial to guide you with nominal fee of 15 INR for Indians. Fort is very small and tall made of wooden mainly.

Another point in leh is, Tibetan Monesy. It is big enough to show you entire city view. As usual, you may find Tatiana monks praying and Buddha idols. There is cafetrai inside and also a shop for items related to Buddha.

Day 10 : Leh to Drass

Night stay at drass. You may find cheap accommodation over there. You may visit local musium and tiger hills if have sufficient time.

Day 11 : Drass to Srinagar

Ensure you leave early by 7 or latest by 8 to cross security checkpost. Usually post 10 am, gates are closed for vehicles to srinagar. You may have hours of long waiting time or may be next day.

Day 12 : Srinagar City Tour

Srinagar-the city beautiful, you can enjoy during your trip finals.

It is famous for its Dal lake and shikara boat ride. Best accomodation is houseboat with heritage experience. You can book at cheaper rates online via goibibo or bookings.com. You may find surprisingly awesome deals which includes breakfast, wifi and sometimes dinner too. For personal Shikara ride, they may charge you 400 INR per hour. Its upto you, how many hours you want to ride. You may find amazing water lily and lotus.

You may visit Pari mahal also, which is one of the popular local site seeings.

If you are non veterinarian, then Srinagar has lot to offer you. Wazvan is famous kashmiri non veg dish.

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