About Me

First and foremost, very warm Welcome and Thanks for stopping by my blog 🙂

Dheeraj Sharma

I am Dheeraj Sharma, an Avid Traveler, a Day – Night Dreamer and a Passionate Lover of Himalayas who has a high zest for driving whilst exploring new places in Himalayas & sharing back those Himalayan Travel experiences with the other fellow Travelers… I am in love with Spreading Smiles in Himalayas through DoW Causes & currently enjoying life as Happy Traveling Soul at DoW Community.

Lately, I found that using your passion to dive into the unknown and testing your limits of soul and body really boosts your individuality. Since then I never looked back. Frequently, I get on my wheels to hunt this unsatisfied hunger of rejuvenating myself in the endless beauty which Himalayas does offer to us. While traveling to Himalayas, I feel I went through a kind of metamorphosis that led to my reincarnation. I am working hard to materialize the vision & mission of DoW Travel Community with the support of all other devils of our community.

Well, professionally I am into Software Development, you can call me a Software Project Manager now ;)… Besides traveling, I enjoy and love my work to the core, trying to be ever competitive in challenges offered to me in my professional life. Personally, Cricket, Computers and Hollywood Movies always finds a special attention in my day to day life. Before I die, I would love see the vision of DoW Community getting materialized where both Himalayan lives & travelers gets benefit from each other without any middlemen between. Just as everything starts with a cause, so do this whole chapter of Traveling in my life. If you are interested to know more please read the post “Everything has a start…

One day a thought rippled through my mind for sharing all I learn from Travel with likes of you, hence I choose to start this Blog.  This Blog (& recently started DoW – Himalayan Travel Community) is all simply about my hobby and passion towards Traveling to Himalayas and getting connected with them in one or the other form. You can expect experiences, learning, thoughts, tips, guides, routes, maps, suggestions, hotel reviews, travel news etc. You all are most welcome to join in, be a part of DoW – Himalayan Travel Community and share your comments, experiences, thoughts, suggestions etc or any stuff related to traveling, driving, dining, riding etc.

The Vision of the DoW Blog is all about living my passion for travel & driving but at the same time to share as much valuable + more practical Himalayan travel information and experiences as possible with other fellow travelers or tourists in order to help them travel with a difference in Himalayas…

Regarding community, you can read: Launch, Focus and Vision | DoW – Himalayan Travel Community

Over the past few years, Travel has taught me many things and if you are interested to know more about it, you can read How Travel Transformed and Made Me Feel that Alive is Awesome. Along with it you can also read about the 6 Reasons Why I Travel

I dedicate this blog and offer my sincere Thanks to my Family (Lovely Mom and Dad and a beautiful wife, my little super hero), Relatives, Friends, Uncle (Mr. Dev Dutt Sharma) for their never ending love, care, affection and support. Of course, they sacrifice their time with me and allows me to help me grow this Himalayan Travel Platform to benefit the lives of all Himalayan Travelers and Himalayan Lives. May GOD bless each one of them and their families too.

You are most welcome to leave a comment if I missed something, I will get back to you within no time. I hope you will subscribe or join the community to read / share what’s new in Himalayan Travel with each passing day and keep on visiting again and again to share your Travel (or driving or riding)  experiences, comments, thoughts, suggestions etc.

2,796 Comments

  1. Hi Dheeraj,

    This is Lutfar from Bangladesh. I’m planning to cover Ladakh & Spiti valley together in June. Can you suggest me which route will be convenient for me to complete the tour ?? Like should i start from Shimla – Kaza – Manali – Leh – Srinagar or the reverse way??

    Would appreciate your kind answer..

    Rgds.

    • Hi Lutfar,

      There will be challenges for covering the inner line areas of Ladakh for you. You have to get the permits from Delhi done first. Permit for citizens of Pakistan, China, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Burma are issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and permits for those people who are on diplomatic or official VISA are issued by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in Delhi. 

      You can refer a below plan in case you get the permits:

      Day 1 | Chandigarh/Ambala – Narkanda – Sarahan
      Day 2 | Sarahan – Rakcham/Sangla/Chitkul
      Day 3 | Rakcham/Sangla/Chitkul – Nako – Geyu Mummy – Tabo
      Day 4 | Tabo – Dhangkar – Dhangkar Lake – Pin Valley – Kaza
      Day 5 | Kaza Rest and Local Sightseeing
      — Ki, Kibber, Gette, Tashigang
      Day 6 | Kaza – Hikkim, Komik, Langza circuit – Kaza
      Day 7 | Kaza – Sissu / Keylong, leave early in the day
      Day 8 | Keylong/Jispa – Leh
      — Leave Keylong/Jispa early next morning, say by 4/5 AM types, so that you reach Leh in the evening.
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 9 | Leh Local Sightseeing + Acclimatization
      — To know the about the places to visit check the link: Travel Guide for Local Sightseeing of Leh Town in Ladakh
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 10 | Leh – Khardung La – Diskit – Hunder
      — Head for Nubra Valley and stay overnight at Hunder / Diskit
      — On the way enjoy a cup of soup at Highest Motorable Pass (as claimed) Khardung La
      — Diskit has monasteries with tallest lord Buddha statue and Hunder has sand dunes and bacterian camel safari

      Day 11 | Hunder / Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Sumur – Khardung La – Leh
      — Sumur has a famous monastery to check out and Panamik has hot water springs
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 12 | Leh – Hemis Monastery – Pangong Tso Lake
      — Cover either of Hemis, Thicksey and Shey on the go towards Pangong Tso
      — Overnight at Pangong Tso (Spangmik or Lukung)

      Day 13 | Pangong Tso Lake – Thicksey Monastery – Shey Palace – Leh
      — Cover either of Hemis, Thicksey and Shey on return to Leh
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 14 | Leh – Tso Moriri via Chumathang
      — Cover Karzok Monastery
      — Overnight at Karzok or Tso Moriri
       
      Day 15 | Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Debring (Manali – Leh Highway starts) – Taglang La – Upshi – Leh
      — Come back via Tso Kar and Manali – Leh Highway to Leh
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 16 | Rest day at Leh to enjoy local culture and some shopping
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 17 | Leh – Lamayuru – Kargil
      — Cover Mulbekh Maitrey, Lamayuru Moanstery, Lunar Landscapes
      — On the way you can also see Gurudwara Pather Sahib, Magnetic Hills, Confluence at Nimmu
      — Overnight at Kargil

      Day 18 | Kargil – Drass – Zozi La – Sonamarg – Srinagar
      — Enjoy the vistas enroute
      — Have late drunch meal at Sonamarg
      — Overnight at Srinagar

      Day 19 | Srinagar – Jammu
      — Overnight at Jammu

      Day 20 | Jammu – Ambala – Delhi
      — Back Home

      • Hi Dheraaj,

        Thank you so much for your quick reply and for the wonderful itinerary. I hope i will follow that with some editions..However, the inner line permission has been relaxed for Bangladeshi a few days back and now we can submit passport to the DC office, Leh directly to get it. I have also talked with a few travelers from BD who already followed the same process and didn’t face any problem. However, any latest information regarding this from you will be appreciated.

        Warm Regards,

        • That’s wonderful, I did not know about it as did not hear from anyone. Thank you for updating us as well. I will update the info. accordingly. Please share your experience of permit process with us too. Also, please confirm from the MHA about Spiti Valley as well else you will need to apply permits in Shimla or Reckong Peo before going any further

        • You are always welcome sir.. !!! I will definitely share my permission process details soon. And thanks again for all the support. 🙂

          Rgds,

          Lutfar.

  2. hello,
    loved your posts. we are planning a trip in May last week to June first week. we plan to do a self drive , have an Innova. We are a family with 2 children aged 15 and 12 years.
    1. how safe / difficult will it be to self drive innova on Shimla – spiti – kunzum – manali during that period?
    2. which mobile connection works in this part of India?

    thanks.

    • Hi Abhishek,

      The main challenge you will face will be at Manali – Kaza road which will not be open most likely in June first week. Once, it opens it will need couple of weeks to become stabilized to travel. Unless you have travelled or drive over such roads, you can under take the Manali – Kaza roads towards end of June or in September, otherwise avoid. Rest of the tour if you travel from Shimla – Kinnaur side and come back the same way can be done in June first week.

      BSNL or MTNL is the one that will work post Kalpa/Reckong Peo region in Kinnaur Valley. Rest will not work.

  3. Dear Mr. Dheeraj,

    Thanks for providing such a wonderful information regarding Leh Tour.

    We are planning Leh Trip from Manali By Road as below:

    manali – jispa
    jispa – leh
    leh – sham velly – leh
    leh – numbra
    nubra – pangong via Shyok Village
    pangon (2nd night)
    peng – tso moriri
    tso moriri – leh
    leh – manali return

    We are planning to visit around 4th July.

    I want to confirm that this route is OK, or we have to change?

    Please suggest.

    Regards
    Lokesh

    • Lokesh, plan looks OK but I will recommend night stay at Hanle instead of two nights at Pangong Tso Also, From Tso Moriri you can go to Sarchu and then further to Manali from Sarchu. There is no need to come back to Leh.

      I hope yo are aware that to do Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri or Pangong Tso to Hanle to Tso Moriri you will need inner line permits which are available in DC office in Leh.

  4. Hi Dheeraj.

    As mentioned in one of my earlier replies too, I was trying to seek information for good travel operators for Spiti around 27Mar onwards for 7 days odd trip via SUV. All boys trip to start from Shimla and back to Shimla after dooing Chitkul, Kalpa Nako, Gyu, Key Monastery, Langza , Kaza, Pin Valley, Dhankar Tabo. We are omitting Chandartal due to Kunzum pass issue. Back to Shimla via Reckonmg Kalpa

    • You can get connected directly to some drivers in Spiti Valley or Kinnaur Valley at the link: List of Taxi Drivers for Spiti Valley & Kinnaur Valley. These drivers can come and pick you up from Manali / Shimla / Delhi / Chandigarh too, of course with a price of pickup as well.

      The rates of the taxis are about Rs 3000-3500 per day depending upon the number of days you plan to travel, more the days, less the price.

      Otherwise, taxis in general are also available on the spot from Shimla or Manali from respective taxi stands

      For stay options in Kinnaur and Spiti, check the link: Some Good Options of Stays in Spiti Valley / Kinnaur Valley.

      You can keep an average of 900-1200 per person per day for food and stay on the tour to Spiti Valley.

  5. Suchanda Ray on

    Hello Mr Dheeraj, I read your blog and liked it very much since I could gather a lot of information to plann the trip.

    We are planning a trip to Leh from 22 April 2017 for 9-10 days and planning to visit these places. We also have a plan to visit Kargil but not sure about the road condition.

    Leh – Sham Valley – Alchi – Leh – Khardung La Pass – Nubra Valley – Hunder – Nubra Valley – Khardung La Pass – Leh – Pangong Tso Lake – Leh – Tso Moriri Lake – Leh

    Now is it possible to visit all these place in last week of April, how will be the road condition during this time. We were told by some travel agents that there remains a risk of road block during last week of April and we are confused now.

    Shall we plan or discard it. I would like your suggestion on the matter with your wide experience.
    We will be thankful to you.

    • Thank you Suchanda, glad DoW was helpful.

      April is still cold in Ladakh, so sleeping at Pangong Tso and Tso Moriri may be a challenge unless you are used to such cold conditions. Roads will have snow over it in last week of April and food+stay will be basic. I will suggest to sleep at Tangtse for Pangong Tso if not making day trip and Chumathang for Tso MOriri. It will be much better to plan the trip in season time.

      • Suchanda Ray on

        Thank you very much for the reply. Since you said roads will have snow covered, does it mean that there will be road block. Is there any chance of snow fall & road block. We are planning to visit in last week of April to see the snow cover maximum but with smooth travel. We had been to Tawang, Sela Pass & Nathula earlier and love snow cover on mountains.

        Your blog is just great and very useful.

        Thank you once again for valuable suggestion.

        • Yes, there are chances of road block and snowfall during April or last week of April too when flights can cancel. Roads within ladakh remains open all lround the the year, so barring few days of heay snowfall in case it happens, the roads will have snow but will be motorable by local drivers.

        • Suchanda Ray on

          Once again thanks for replying. We are trying to finalize our plan and may opt for April end since due to some problem we can not postpone it to May. Hope we enjoy the trip without much problem.

  6. Hi Dheeraj

    First Thank you very much for you nice posts in this site.

    We 6 guys are going to Leh from 16th May to 21st May 2017(first time). Our Trip will start from

    1 – 16th may = Leh, 2 – 17th May = Leh to Nubra valley(stay), 3 = 18th may – return to Leh and stay, 4 – 19th may = Leh to Pangong(stay), 5 – 20th May = return to Leh and stay

    Please let me know, this package will ok for 5 days?
    Also My questions are

    1 – Is it safe to drive the bikes in these routes in May, we know bike riding – but not specialist? or we will hire Taxi’s over there?
    2 – How about the road conditions in May. Will it be slippery or plain roads, Ok for bike riding?
    3 – What about the Oxygen level in Nubra and Pangong? What will be the temperature in 3rd week of May?
    4 – Required Amenities for Leh to Nubra and Pangong trip?

    Also if You can give us some more valuable tips – it will be very helpful for us.

    Thanks
    Gopal

    • Please refer the plan below for just 5 days in hand.

      1. Try for first couple of days but being ice/snow on roads at passes will pose challenges to you.
      2. Roads are mostly OK but with snow around passed in May
      3. Pangong Tso will be quite cold, Nubra still cool.
      4. Nubra you will get most hotels up and running while Pangong Tso there may be challenge due to cold but since you are making day trip it should be OK in May.

      Day 1 | Delhi – Leh (By Flight)
      — Checkin at Hotel. Many hotels provide free pick and drop from Airport. Ask while you book them.
      — Take ample of rest as well as water or anything that keep your body hydrated enough. DO NOT OVER HYDRATE. Take ORS Soluted water or ORS – L tetra packs from home.
      — Do not over exert your body at any cost. Avoid too much up-down on stairs or avoid it in entirety, if possible.
      — After 5-6 Hrs of rest you can visit Leh Palace, Local Leh market, Shankar Gompa .
      — If you feel exerted go back to Hotel, have dinner at Hotel and take rest. Avoid any exertion. Else continue and,
      — Follow the sunset by stroll at Changspa road and have a nice dinner on varied cuisines offered in-around Changspa road.
      — Go back to hotel for overnight stay at Leh.
       
      Day 2 | Leh Local Sightseeing + Acclimatization
      — Hire a taxi from Leh taxi stand or Hotel whichever suits you.
      — Bargain hard with taxi driver. Book that single taxi for entire trip after explaining the complete plan.
      — Take his inputs if you feel reasonable and if required modify the plan accordingly but should suits you best.
      — Ask him to be with you guys starting first day itself, if required and charged reasonable else do it at your own.
      — Again DO NOT over exert and take little steps and slow walks only.
      — If feeling OK then do Local sightseeing. To know the about the places to visit check the link: Travel Guide for Local Sightseeing of Leh Town in Ladakh
      — Do not use stairs at any of these places just to see them as it will exert your body much more.
      — Overnight at Leh
       
      Day 3 | Leh – Khardung La – Diskit – Hunder
      — Head for Nubra Valley and stay overnight at Hunder / Diskit
      — On the way enjoy a cup of soup at Highest Motorable Pass (as claimed) Khardung La
      — Diskit has monasteries with tallest lord Buddha statue and Hunder has sand dunes and bacterian camel safari

      Day 4 | Hunder / Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Sumur – Khardung La – Leh
      — Sumur has a famous monastery to check out and Panamik has hot water springs
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 5 | Leh – Pangong Tso – Leh
      — Do not plan to stay overnight at Pangong Tso as you will not be acclimatized and may fall sick. So, make a day trip only.
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 6 | Rest day at Leh to enjoy local culture and some shopping OR Monastery tour OR Sham Valley tour OR Fly back home
      — Overnight at Leh
      — Monastery tour may include Hemis, Thicksey and Shey monasteries. They come on the route of Pangong Tso but as you will be doing day trip, it will be a bit hectic to include them on that day only.
      — Sham Valley include Alchi, Likir, Basgo Palace, Magnetic Hills, Confluence at Nimmu, Gurudwara Pather Sahib

  7. Madhav & Dashwant on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    Hope you are doing good and all iz well 🙂

    We are two friends who have been planning a trip to ladhak for the last three years and finally have finalized the dates this year. We are driving a Fiat Punto Diesel and planning to start from Delhi on 3rd June and do Manali at one shot. Now our biggest dilema is where to stop between Manali and Leh. We have heard Sarchu is at a very high altitude and does not help acclimatize . Jispa/keylong seems to be too near from Manali and the next league becomes long. We would want to hear from you on a place to halt which may “almost” divide our journey from Manali to Leh by half. We are two guys so we just need some quilts and a toilet in the morning. So we are good to put up in a Dhaba..but the question is…where !?

    Look forward to your advice

    • Thank you Madhav, yeah All iz well 😉 …

      There is no such place to almost divide the journey and hence, it is one drawback of planning the trip from Manali side. Most of the highway of Manali – Leh runs above 14000 feet after Darcha, little ahead of Jispa, so there is no ideal spot to sleep unless you want to take up the challenge. However, now a days, with flat bed road on Mooore plains the journey from Jispa to LEh is not that unforgiving as it used to be some 2-3 years back. So, don’t worry much and stay at Jispa. Leave at 6 AM and you shoudl easily reach Leh before dark.

  8. Hi
    Is it possible to rent a bike in Leh to only tour the country? it seems like the companies only advertise to rent for road trips to other places.

      • Hello
        Thank you for the reply.
        No, I simply would like to rent a bike in Leh, use the bike to ride around Ladakh and then return to Leh at shop. I only find tour rentals and I have no interest in riding with a group. Is it possible to rent a bike just by myself to ride around Ladakh with?
        Thank you

  9. Hello Dheeraj,

    We are planning Leh on June 16th 2017. I kindly request you to guide best Itinerary.
    We are planning Chandigarh – Manali-Leh-Kargil-Srinagar. I want to know places to visit and we are doing in bikes. Timeline: 16th June to 29th June.if you also tel me places to stay that would be an great help

    Looking forward for your advise.

    Thanks,
    Charan
    +91 9945984718
    charanreddy957@gmail.com

    • Hello Charan,

      Firstly, I will suggest you that please plan it in other direction as going via Srinagar – Leh Highway will be much much easier on your body and help you acclimatize to the high altitude of Manali – Leh Highway. Also, it allows you to enjoy the beauty of Manali – Leh by splitting the journey almost evenly in two days which is very difficult in the other direction. Thirdly, it will allow you to fit Tso Moriri lake into the itinerary in better way. You can read more reasons on the link here

      You can check a very balanced and most common itinerary for Leh – Ladakh followed by many travellers including me at the link here for 13-14 days: Most Common Itinerary for Leh – Ladakh.

      You can check the nice, preferred list of accommodation options in entire Leh – Ladakh (Leh, Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri) including moderate (cheap budget hotels as well) in the series of articles starting on the link here

      For the leh – ladakh taxi union rate list 2016 – 17 including the contacts of some reliable taxi drivers within Leh – Ladakh, check the link here. You can get about 12-15% of discount by directly getting in touch with drivers and of course, talking in person rather on phone always help in bargaining more.

      Regards
      Dheeraj

  10. Dear Dheeraj,

    I am really sorry but I need to bother you again. Do you know how long the Triund Trek will take both UP and Down.

    Many many thanks for all your guidance and help to people on this forum.

  11. Mausumi Dutta Sahu on

    Checking about Dates
    Hi Dheeraj,
    We have booked a holiday span for Ladakh staring 28th April. We would be going from Bangalore and reaching Leh on 28th April morning. Would be there till 11th May morning. Not planned anything about where to go and what to see beyond booking. This time; may be; being start of season (?), would like to have your advise on planning.
    Regards
    Msahu

    • Hello Mausami,

      April end is still cold in Leh and very cold in upper parts of Ladakh like Pangong Tso and Tso Moriri. Both the lakes would be partially frozen if not fully frozen and spending a night at these places will be very cold. Can you somehow postpone this trip by at least couple of weeks to get more out of it?

  12. Hello Dheeraj,

    We plan to reach Srinagar on 16th June in the afternoon around 2 PM from Pune for a 7 day Leh- Laddakh trip via bikes. Question(s)-

    1, What is the best and cost effective way to reach Leh from Srinagar? We are 6 PAX in the group.
    2. Should we stop over at Srinagar on 16th night and start 17th morning?
    3. Or should we hire a taxi/mini bus from Srinagar to Kargil and stopover there on 16th night?

    Your help deeply appreciated.

    Regards

    • Hi Subodh,

      1. You can reach Leh from Srinagar by taxi which will cost around 14K. 6 will be tight in taxi but economic.
      2. You should stop overnight in Srinagar as you will not be able to reach Kargil in daylight

      Regards
      Dheeraj

  13. Pavan Kumar C on

    HI Dheeraj,

    Firstly i would like to appreciate the way you have been patiently helping people with the planning in a way no one else would do. Kudos for that.

    i, Pavan Kumar from chennai (27 years old) have been dreaming of a bike ride to leh-ladakh from manali and back for quite sometime along with my friends. Invariably each of them backs out at the moment of booking. This time i am planning it to do alone.
    Are you organizing any rides this year ? Please let me know

    Thanks in advance
    Pavan

    • Thank you Pavan. We do not organize any rides. It is an info sharing platform to help you plan your trips without fuss and for free 🙂 … There are some copy cats who uses a name similar to ours to benefit commercially and taint our brand name. Please beware of such copy cats. WE DO NOT organize any tour or travel packages.

  14. Thank you Dheeraj for your input. It is indeed very helpful. We will use your tips to plan our holiday and I will keep you posted after our trip.

    • Best wishes for your trip. Feel free to post any further questions you may have for your trip 🙂 🙂 .. Will look forward to your reviews or travel tales in DoW Community post your trip.

  15. Dear Dheeraj,

    We took your advice and are planning a trip in and around Kinnaur!
    Am engaging with a tour operator called Spiti Valley tours. Has anybody heard of them? Any advice on which are good tour operators in the region. Also need a bit of advice on which car would be better, we were offered – an Innova or a Mahindra.

    Many thanks once again for your prompt responses and help

    Regards,

  16. Hi!
    I have read your blogs and posts with great interset and have been inspired by it to visit Kinnaur valley for a holiday.

    I would wish to travel to Kinnaur valley for a week from 28 March to 5/6 April from shimla. I have been loking at diffrent forums to plan my trip. Some forums and people suggest it is a good time to visit where as some advice aginst it. I understand it can be chilly; I am used to cold and can dress appropriately for warmth and comfort and hence not a huge problem.

    I would like to know if this is a good time to visit to see the beuty of the place or is it better to visit it at a diffrent time of the year? Would the road conditiond be condusive for the trip?

    Can u recommend any hiking groups or guides in the area that I can talk to organise a trek in that area?

    Is 7 days too short to travel in this region? Again I understand we cant see everything but can we have a good trip and some time to chill with the views or is it going to be consumed by the distance and time taken to travel. Whilst travelling in this region is part of the charm and part of the trip I do not want to spend all the time on the road.

    I have looked at your suggested itenary on the forum and wil use it personalise my itenary if you think it is a good time to go. Would you have any specific tips or recommnedations based on what I have told you that could help me make the most of my limited time in the valley.

    I am thinking of flying from delhi to shimla and then hire a vehicle for the trip. Again any recommendations?

    Thanking you in advnace in anticipation of your reply and look forward to hearing from you.

    • Hello Nima,

      1. March end is fine to travel to Kinnaur Valley, it is not that freezing in March. Roads are also OK to travel.

      2. Once you reach, I don’t see you have enough time on hand to hike. You may hike/walk to Roghi village from Kalpa or there are some hikes in Sangla in woods that you can take. Hotel/Homestay guys will help you with the guides. This will help them too rather you giving money to a middlemen.

      3. You can refer: Kinnaur Valley – Most Common Itinerary. You can get connected directly to some drivers in Spiti Valley or Kinnaur Valley at the link: List of Taxi Drivers for Spiti Valley & Kinnaur Valley. These drivers can come and pick you up from Manali / Shimla / Delhi / Chandigarh too, of course with a price of pickup as well.

      The rates of the taxis are about Rs 3000-3500 per day depending upon the number of days you plan to travel, more the days, less the price.

      Otherwise, taxis in general are also available on the spot from Shimla or Manali from respective taxi stands

      For stay options in Kinnaur and Spiti, check the link: Some Good Options of Stays in Spiti Valley / Kinnaur Valley.

      Regards
      Dheeraj

  17. Nisha Yadav on

    Hi Dheeraj,
    We are two people and want to go to Spiti in coming week (13-19march 2017). Do you know any group /people interested or already going to and we can join them?

    Rdgs
    Nisha

  18. Hi Dheeraj,

    We are planning Lahaul-Spiti trip via Shimla in July in 7 days plus a day for Shimla Manali each can you suggest itinerary for the same? As well nice ,clean hotels and restaurants enroute?

    • You can follow the below plan for 7 days which may be a bit hectic but with just 7 days, it should be OK

      Day 1 : Reach Manali by overnight volvo of and stay overnight at Solang Valley as preferred for acclimatization
      Day 2 : Manali / Solang – Kaza
      Day 3 : Kaza – Dhangkar – Tabo
      Day 4 : Tabo – Pin Valley – Kaza. Do Ki, Kibber in the evening.
      Day 5 : Kaza – Langza – Komik – Hikkim – Chandratal
      Day 6 : Chandratal – Manali
      Day 7 : Reach Delhi by overnight Volvo from Manali

      You can get connected directly to some drivers in Spiti Valley or Kinnaur Valley at the link: List of Taxi Drivers for Spiti Valley & Kinnaur Valley. These drivers can come and pick you up from Manali / Shimla / Delhi / Chandigarh too, of course with a price of pickup as well.

      The rates of the taxis are about Rs 3000-3500 per day depending upon the number of days you plan to travel, more the days, less the price.

      Otherwise, taxis in general are also available on the spot from Shimla or Manali from respective taxi stands

      For stay options in Kinnaur and Spiti, check the link: Some Good Options of Stays in Spiti Valley / Kinnaur Valley.

      You can keep an average of 900-1200 per person per day for food and stay on the tour to Spiti Valley.

      • Thanks Dhiraj but we want to complete the entire circuit starting from Shimla in 7 days+1 day in Shimla+1 day in Manali so total 9 days can you suggest itinerary ? Will it be too hectic?

        • In such a case, do it like

          Day 1 | Delhi – Narkanda
          Day 2 | Narkanda – Sangla/Chitkul
          Day 3 | Sangla/Chitkul – Kalpa
          Day 4 | Kalpa – Nako – Nako Lake – Geyu Mummy – Tabo
          Day 5 | Tabo – Dhankar – Dhankar Lake – Pin Valley (Mudh Village)
          Day 6 | Pin Valley – Kaza Local Sightseeing 
          — Ki, Kibber, Gette, Tashigang in the second half of the day
          — Sakya abode or snow lion are two best options at Kaza. Get in touch with Tsering at 09418208987, he is more than a friend to me. Will offer you best price. Both are run by him only. He has home stays too.
          Day 7 | Kaza Local Sightseeing (Hikkim, Koumik) 
          — Hikkim, Kaumik, Langza circuit 
          Day 8 | Kaza – Kunzum Pass – Chandratal/Losar
          Day 9 | Chandratal – Manali
          Day 10 | Manali – Delhi

  19. hello,

    I was planning to take my bike from Pune to Srinagar for the Leh trip.
    Should i transfer the bike through railways or go for gati or some private vendor.

    Please share the cost of both if possbile 🙂

  20. Dear Dheeraj,

    I am planning to visit Himachal Pradesh from 28 March 2017 – 5 March 2017. We (my friend and I) would like to visit the Spiti Valley and trek there. We get mixed reviews about whether this would be a good time to visit Spiti.

    I understand that this is not the “high” season, but since we will be at Vaishno Devi on 26.3 we thought of trekking in Himachal.

    What is your opinion? And if Spiti is not an option, would you recommend any other places for trekking in Himachal. We would want to trek for about 3 days, take a break and do another trek for about 2 – 3 days.

    Many thanks.

    • Hello Prathima,

      Spiti Valley will be frozen during that time of the year, if you are not used to such harsh trips it is not at all recommended that you travel to Spiti Valley during such a time. Regarding treks or hikes, it will be much better to plan a visit limited to Kinnaur Valley where you can also hike to certain places in Sangla Valley or around Chitkul. Please refer: Kinnaur Valley – Most Common Itinerary

    • Dear Dheeraj

      Apologies.

      Going through this mail this morning, I realized that I have made a mistake with the dates

      It is 28 MARCH to 5 APRIL 2017

      Will the weather be any different at this time?

      Prathima

      • Hi Prathima,

        Well, I did assume you wanted to do trip from 28 Mar to 5 April and suggested accoridingly. It is better you keep yourself to Kinnaur Valley during this time of the year unless you are used to undergoing harsh trips.

  21. Hi Dheeraj,

    how much time does it take for this routes?
    1) pangong tso to hanle via chushul?
    2) hanle to tsomoriri lake via nyoma?
    And how is the road condition for above mentioned route? iwant to travel by this routes if i get permit?

    • Pangong Tso to Hanle will take about 7-8 hrs depending upon breaks you take in between. Hanle to Tso Morir will take about 6 Hrs again depending upon breaks you take in between Road conditions from Pangong Tso to Loma via Chusul and Tsaga is a bumpy dirt track ride. Road starts after crossing Tsaga checkpost and then till Hanle it is fine. Sumdo to Tso Moriri for about 54 Kms is bad.

      • Hi Dheeraj,

        this is the tentative itinerary which i have planned? I am planning to visit ladakh in first week of july and i will be mostly doing on spot booking for accommodation. we are group of 4 to 5 people.

        day 1 & 2 Srinagar – Leh in 2 days
        day 3 Leh Local sightseeing
        day 4,5,6 Leh – Nubra Valley – turtuk – Leh in 3 Day
        day 7 Leh – Pangong Tso
        day 8 pangong – Hanle ( via chusul)
        day 9 Hanle to tsomoriri
        day 10,11 & 12 Leh – Tso Moriri – Sarchu – Manali in 3days

        question no 1) pls give me estimate of travel cost for each day? (scorpio/innova)
        2) for which place i should do advance booking for accommodation?
        3) How many weeks prior i should book a driver?

        • Nikhil, the plan looks good to me. You will need inner line permits to travel to Hanle via Chusul from Pangong Tso on Day 3.

          1. Whole route might cost you around 65K
          2. Try for Hanle as there aren’t much places to look around.
          3. You can book now as well and try to be in touch with him.

  22. hi Dheeraj,
    This is siddhesh .If you could guide us plan our journey to leh in budget it will be a great help,
    we are total 12 members wanting to start journey on May13th from delhi.
    Its has been informed to us by the local travel guide in Delhi to hire 2 innovas as we shall reach to our destination faster. we have been quoted rs 81,000 total for the same,Total 9days journey and drop back to Delhi Airport.
    1)Kindly tell me if its the price quote is correct or we can negotiate still for better price or take any other
    travel option which can be more affordable.
    2)how much more budget should we keep for local sight seeing in leh followed by the no. of days.accordingly we have to apply for leave:)

    Please help,

    Looking for your valuable guidence

    Thanks

    • Siddhesh, I am not sure who quoted it to you but outside rented taxis are not allowed for sightseeing in Ladakh. And roads to Ladakh will not open rom Manali side for sure by the time you are planning for this trip.

      • Thanks for your reply dheeraj,
        yes,he said the same,i.e the cars once reached leh from delhi shall remain parked outside hotel , thus this budget for 2 innovas is just for drop from delhi to leh and back to delhi, when inquired to him about how much extra cost shall we bare for seight seeing in leh he said that it depends upon local govt rates,

        please guide us plan our trip,will be great help brother!

        we have 11days tour plan from delhi, 12 members total,can you give me brief only about total travel cost, i.e. if we start journey from delhi do local sight seeing in leh and get back to delhi on 11th day

        • Hi Siddhesh,

          Well, you can refer to How to calculate cost or budget for Leh – Ladakh trip for budget and cost of the Ladakh trip.

          As per the taxi union rates of year 2016-17 (http://devilonwheels.com/leh-ladakh-taxi-rates-2016-17/) following is the break up
          Srinagar – Leh in 2 days = 18400
          Leh Local sightseeing = 2500-3000
          Leh – Nubra Valley 2 Day = 10566
          Leh – Pangong Tso 2 Day = 10301
          Leh – Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Sarchu – Manali 2-3 days = 29056
          Leh – Manali 2 Days = 21588
          Leh – Pangong Tso 1 Day = 8653
          Leh – Nubra Valley 1 Day = 8053
          You can usually get about 10-15% discount on these taxi rates after getting in touch with the driver directly.

          So, add these to the 81K he is charging you guys.

  23. nidhising77 on

    Hi Dheraj

    I am recent registered member on DoW. I am an indian national living outside of India and am looking to plan a trip to Manali and (maybe Spiti valley/ladakh – open to suggestions:) with my family which include my husband and two kids aged 6 and 8 in June 2017. I need some inputs into planning my trip with kids in tow. I understand that June is peak season and is likely to be crowded but I am hoping to find some quieter places along the way…I have many many questions but to start with, I’d like to know – 1) if its ok to travel with my kids to Spiti valley, ladakh/leh
    in terms of altitude, things I should consider etc.) 2) what would be the best way to approach the trip. (as in; is it better to fly directly in leh/ladakh from delhi? or find a hired car and driver for del-manali? I have heard this route can be very crowded in June; Any suggestions on the car companies I can use to hire a comfortable car and driver etc. ) I have about 15 days to do this trip.

    Thank you in advance
    Nidhi

    • Hello Nidhi,

      You can check a very balanced and most common itinerary for Leh – Ladakh followed by many travellers including me at the link here for 13-14 days: Most Common Itinerary for Leh – Ladakh.

      You should opt for either Spiti or Ladakh, I have suggested Ladakh plan above let me know if you need Spiti one.

      1. PLEASE read the article: Traveling to Ladakh with Kids or Babies. This article covers this topic in complete detail.

      2. Best is to fly to Srinagar and then start from there to Leh – Ladakh and come down to Manali – Chandigarh. For the leh – ladakh taxi union rate list 2016 – 17 including the contacts of some reliable taxi drivers within Leh – Ladakh, check the link here. You can get about 12-15% of discount by directly getting in touch with drivers and of course, talking in person rather on phone always help in bargaining more.

      For the list of good restaurants in Leh – Ladakh or eateries or food joints where food is enjoyed by many travellers including me, you can check the link here: List of Good Restaurants in Leh – Ladakh | Restaurant Reviews

      Check the list of things to carry for Leh – Ladakh or other trip including basic medical kit, clothing, must haves etc. at the link here: List of Things to Carry for Leh – Ladakh trip.

      To know about AMS and acclimatization including the tips to combat AMS, please DO READ: Acute Mountain Sickness and Importance of Acclimatization

      Regards
      Dheeraj

  24. Dhanapal2323 on

    Hello Dheerajangam

    I’m a retired Forest officer from Tamilnadu. We (four men 50_60 age) plan to travel by air to Leh during 19_24 April 2017. Air tickets are booked but confused about travel agent.
    Advise me to plan hotels and vehicles to see Nubra valley and Pangong lake.

    With regards
    Dhanapal

    • Hello Dhanapal ji,

      If you are looking for Ladakh tour and packages, you can connect with info@offbeatescapes.com as most of the readers in the past couple of years have had very good feedback about them and especially their transparent policies along with being there with you all the time in need. So, we trust them the most. You can refer my name or DoW to Gaurav, the guy who runs it. He knows us very well and should be able to offer some special rates being a DoW Member. You can just refer him the DoW Community Member Username in such a case or screenshot of this reply here.

      Else you can pretty much follow the below plan for 6 days
      Day 1 | Delhi – Leh (By Flight)
      — Checkin at Hotel. Many hotels provide free pick and drop from Airport. Ask while you book them.
      — Take ample of rest as well as water or anything that keep your body hydrated enough. DO NOT OVER HYDRATE. Take ORS Soluted water or ORS – L tetra packs from home.
      — Do not over exert your body at any cost. Avoid too much up-down on stairs or avoid it in entirety, if possible.
      — After 5-6 Hrs of rest you can visit Leh Palace, Local Leh market, Shankar Gompa .
      — If you feel exerted go back to Hotel, have dinner at Hotel and take rest. Avoid any exertion. Else continue and,
      — Follow the sunset by stroll at Changspa road and have a nice dinner on varied cuisines offered in-around Changspa road.
      — Go back to hotel for overnight stay at Leh.
       
      Day 2 | Leh Local Sightseeing + Acclimatization
      — Hire a taxi from Leh taxi stand or Hotel whichever suits you.
      — Bargain hard with taxi driver. Book that single taxi for entire trip after explaining the complete plan.
      — Take his inputs if you feel reasonable and if required modify the plan accordingly but should suits you best.
      — Ask him to be with you guys starting first day itself, if required and charged reasonable else do it at your own.
      — Again DO NOT over exert and take little steps and slow walks only.
      — If feeling OK then do Local sightseeing. To know the about the places to visit check the link: Travel Guide for Local Sightseeing of Leh Town in Ladakh
      — Do not use stairs at any of these places just to see them as it will exert your body much more.
      — Overnight at Leh
       
      Day 3 | Leh – Khardung La – Diskit – Hunder
      — Head for Nubra Valley and stay overnight at Hunder / Diskit
      — On the way enjoy a cup of soup at Highest Motorable Pass (as claimed) Khardung La
      — Diskit has monasteries with tallest lord Buddha statue and Hunder has sand dunes and bacterian camel safari

      Day 4 | Hunder / Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Sumur – Khardung La – Leh
      — Sumur has a famous monastery to check out and Panamik has hot water springs
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 5 | Leh – Pangong Tso – Leh
      — Do not plan to stay overnight at Pangong Tso as you will not be acclimatized and may fall sick. So, make a day trip only.
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 6 | Rest day at Leh to enjoy local culture and some shopping OR Monastery tour OR Sham Valley tour OR Fly back home
      — Overnight at Leh
      — Monastery tour may include Hemis, Thicksey and Shey monasteries. They come on the route of Pangong Tso but as you will be doing day trip, it will be a bit hectic to include them on that day only.
      — Sham Valley include Alchi, Likir, Basgo Palace, Magnetic Hills, Confluence at Nimmu, Gurudwara Pather Sahib

  25. Hi,

    Nice to see a great community online. me and a couple of my friends are planning Leh Ladakh Bike Trip in July / Aug 2017 and plan to take our wives with us. Just wondering if any of other members of this group may be interested to join as a couple. Plan is a leisurely trip Srinagar – Lah – Manali with some days for Nubra, Pengang, Tsomorori etc. A slow moving luxirous trip with a back up van. I guess we need 5-6 more couples to join us so that it will be affordable for all. myself and my friend are second timers so we are aware of the terrain and climatic conditions etc. However we are not planning this as commercial venture.

    do ping me on jbhala@hotmail,com if anyone is interested.

    have a great time, bye.
    Bhala

  26. Hello Dheeraj,

    I have plan to go to Sangla/Chitkul in early April this year. After that, I was thinking to go further in Tabo, Kaza and spend couple of nights there and return via the same route.
    Would it be possible to go into Spiti at this time? I am travelling with my family.

    Regards,
    Biswadeep

    • Yes Biswadeep, you can surely make the plan to Spiti in April but it is not recommended as you will be traveling with family and things willl be harsh in Spiti even in April with hotels closed and toilets not having water. So, better plan a family trip to Spiti in season time only.

      • Biswadeep Dasgupta on

        Hello Dheeraj,

        Much thanks for your reply!
        We had a trip to Spiti (full circuit via Kunzum Pass) in June, and so this time wanted to go little early (in April).
        I could get in touch with one hotel in Tabo (Dewachen retreat) and they mentioned that they can give accommodation, but with bucket waters only which was ok for us.
        I will take a final decision after talking to them while I am at Chitkul this April.

        Regards,
        Biswadeep

  27. hello dheeraj…u r really doin a gr8 job….m planning for a ladakh trip this year…i wantd to ask what happens if the tube tyre of bikes get punctured in the middle of nowhere and help is atleast 50-70 kms away….what is to be done in such situation…plz help me with ur xperienc….???

    • You should know how to fix the puncture tyre or carry puncture resistant liquids/foams based solutions. Else, you will have to wait for some empty pickup to come and put your bike in it or take out the tyre and take lifts to reach the shop and get it repaired and come back the same way to install it back.

  28. aditya k bafna on

    hiii dheeraj sir planning to go manali leh srinagar bike tour ,i am in talk with himalayanrider 12 day tour 40,000 is cost for 2 person on 1 bike ,what is ur opinion on this is it right cost ??? i am confused which road trip to choose ,manali -leh ,only or complete circle as i am going for the first time and i am not a rider as well,so ur opinion on both the q will help me alot cause ur the man whos words will be final for me …. thanx in advance

    • Aditya, I am not sure about the cost but if it is for two persons for 12 day trip including everything looks OK it seems. You should explore options of making the trip yourself as well as you have all the info. available for help here.

      If you are not a ride, I will not suggest a bike ride as such as that one to Ladakh as it can be taxing for non riders. Best is to reach Leh – Ladakh and ride for short trips upon reaching Leh.

  29. Puneet Piyush on

    Dear Dheeraj

    I am planning a 2 week bike ride to Leh.

    Delhi (2 days) – Amritsar (2 days) – Jammu – Srinagar (2 days) – Kargil – Leh (2 or more days) – Khardungla – Pangong (1 day) – Hanle (2 days) – Pang/ Sarchu – Manali – Delhi (2 days).

    Please provide your feedback on the itinerary, what are the things we can add or remove. I really want to spend some time at Hanle.

    Also, how feasible will this be from 13 – 28 May. We will be having 4 bikes with 2 pillion.

  30. Hi Dheeraj,

    Your passion for Himalayas and to help people like me to sort out travel plans is commendable.

    Would you be able to guide me to take a trip to Himachal/Uttarakhand on a budget for twin sharing basis in March?

    In Himachal, We would like to visit Kasol, Manali and around for a week. Then head to spiti. I checked your blog for budget trip to spiti and iv been there before.

    Please advice. Thanks

  31. Hi

    I am planning to go to Deoria Tal -Chopta-Tunganath-Chandrashila Peak in first week of March.My queries are:
    1. Is it possible for 64 years old to trek there? Dad has easily managed Char Dham many times.
    2. Will it be too cold to camp at Deoria Tal with 4 year old kid?
    3. Do we get porter facility for Kid?

    I will be starting on 27th Feb from Haridwar.

    Thanks.

    Regards

    • Hi Vidhya,

      1. Tunganath trek isn’t much difficult but in first week of March, there will be snow which means it will be different ball game altogether. However, since he has experience with hiking in mountains, you can surely give it a try and in case it becomes arduous you guys can come back from that spot. DO NOT take unnecessary risks as an injury could mean more hassles. Take a guide with you for sure as in snow hiking path will be covered with snow only.

      2. March is OK at Deoriatal but do go prepared with woollens.

      3. You may get it but you should check with some local guide, he should be able to help you with it. You can find few references of the guides in the article: Tungnath – Chandrashilla – Chopta – Deoriatal – Most Common Itinerary

      Again DO NOT take unnecessary risks in case you see over there.

  32. Hello Dheeraj Sir,

    I am planning a bike trip from 16 June 17 to 25 June 17 (10 days) starting from Chandigarh – Manali – Leh – Srinagar.

    I would be pleased if you could provide me the travel itinerary for the same which will help me for exploring ladakh in a shorter time 🙂

    Regards
    Shrikant

    • Firstly, I will suggest you that please plan it in other direction as going via Srinagar – Leh Highway will be much much easier on your body and help you acclimatize to the high altitude of Manali – Leh Highway. Also, it allows you to enjoy the beauty of Manali – Leh by splitting the journey almost evenly in two days which is very difficult in the other direction. Thirdly, it will allow you to fit Tso Moriri lake into the itinerary in better way. You can read more reasons on the link here

      You can check a very balanced and most common itinerary for Leh – Ladakh followed by many travellers including me at the link here for 13-14 days: Most Common Itinerary for Leh – Ladakh.

      You can check the nice, preferred list of accommodation options in entire Leh – Ladakh (Leh, Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri) including moderate (cheap budget hotels as well) in the series of articles starting on the link here

  33. Richa gupta on

    Hello Mr.Dheeraj,
    I won’t say that I’m a passionate traveller but yea I love to travel alot & here I need ur help in this trip. I’ve very limited tym to complete my journey in 10 days. I’m planning a trip leh laddakh via spiti from 1st April to 10th April from delhi. I’ve travelled alone different places shimla manali tirthan etc before n it was good n manageable for me.
    But here I heard a lot about leh laddakh n spiti n again m travelling alone as I really want to. So plz here guide me for the route by public transport n is this good tym for sightseeing n all. How abt a nyt stay near moon lake or tsomoriri lake?? Looking forward to here 4m u soon. Thanks

    • Hey Richa, the roads are going to be closed in April and you cannot undertake road trip to Ladakh from Spiti Valley in April. Also, doing Spiti + Ladakh is a bit too too much in just 10 days any day. You should focus either one of them only.

  34. Hello Dheeraj,

    It was a pleasant surprise to come across your blog – amazingly informative write ups with lots of passion.
    In fact I came across your blog, while searching for places to see snow/snowfall near to Delhi.
    Though its extremely short notice, a window of 5-6 days have suddenly opened up for us on the 26th Jan week, first choice would be a place with snow , however there are certain constraints.

    We’ll be travelling with your 3 year old child so cannot do long stretches of driving. Also my husband is not convinced that she can handle the cold at this age.

    It would be a great help ,If you can please share your thoughts of some locations , both with or without for planning this trip,

    Thanks ,

    Regards,

    Minakshi

    • Thank you Minakshi !! 3 yr old shall be good enough as my kiddo is traveling with us since he was like 20 months and that too in winter months to snow places too. All matters is that you take enough clothing and don’t be over adventurous. You can opt for Kausani/Gwaldam and around in Kumaon. Also, to be more offbeat and secluded, Chopta/Ukimath will be more promising for snow.

  35. Sudeep Joshi on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    Fantastic write ups ans really informative stuff. I quite agree when you said your soul is still up there and I think I share a similar feeling. Having been to Ladakh 3 times – Chadar, Stok Kangri and Bike, I dont know what is it about this place that make me wanna visit again and again.

    Just had a query. I am planning our office trip to Leh from 9th to 13th March 2017 and below is the rough plan.

    Day 01 : 9th Mar’17 – Arrive Leh and transfer to hotel. Resting and Acclimatization. May be visiting the Market if everyone is acclimatized.
    Day 02 10th Mar’17 – Morning Visit to Shanti Stupa, Sham valley sightseeing visiting confluence ( Zanskar & Indus), Gurudwara pathar sahib, Magnetic hill and Hall of fame museum.
    Day 03 11th Mar’17 – Excursion to Pangong Tso and back via Chang La – 17590 ft ( 5 to 6 hrs one way travel visiting Chang La, Durbuk, Tangtse – Any possibility of staying somewhere close to Pangong Tso?)
    Day 04 12th Mar’17 – Excursion to Khardung La top and back
    Day 05 13th Mar’17 – Departure

    Although I am confident I will be fine, but I am just concerned about the rest of the guys since most of the guys and girls here have not been to negative temperatures and such high altitude and hence keep on wondering if it is a good idea to do this in March.

    Is it advisable to go during this time?
    Is this trip too short?
    Is there a place near Pangong where we can stay so that we dont have to come back?
    Any other suggestions to make this trip happen! 😛

    Thank you!

    Regards,
    Sudeep Joshi

    • Sudeep, you are pretty much experienced with the conditions and I am sure with AMS issues too. Cold does not help acclimatizing well and in March more or less Pangong Tso will be forzen. So, if those kids have dreams of blue hues from 3 idiots or bollywood movies, they will be more or less shattered 😉 …

      Trip certainly is short and I will suggest adding couple of days to at least explore Nubra Valley to add some charm to the trip. Do Pangong Tso day trip towards the end of the trip and only place to stay will be Tangtse where guest houses should be open.

      • Sudeep Joshi on

        Hey DS thanks for your reply. Extending the trip is sort of not possible so we have to live with the duration for now. Any contacts in Tangste where we could stay and what sort of places that they will be? I am expecting only home stays there and most of the people who I am going with are touchy about stays so this may not be a good idea! 🙁

        Just in case we dont get to stay, what do you feel about going to Pangong Tso in the morning and returning by evening? I think even if it is frozen they should be OK. But how much time should this return journey take? and will this journey be taxing to the group? We are a group of 15-16 so moving around is bit of an issue for us. 3,4 different cars/ managing transport locally/discounts etc.

        Would like to know your thoughts!

        Thanks dude.

        • Sudeep Joshi on

          Great! Will get in touch with the ones that you mentioned.

          I guess we will try for a 1 day trip only which, on one side can be exhausting, but on the other side can be so fulfilling! This needs to be drilled into these guys who unfortunately have not had the Ladakh experience.

          Newy, thanks for your help. Can you inbox me your number, just in case I need to get in touch with you!? That will be mighty nice.

          Cheers buddy.

          Keep travelling!

        • Hey Sudeep,

          Sorry about the number as I am currently in US, so it makes hard to communicate due to office work load and time differences 🙂 .. You can catch me up over the blog anytime and mostly I ill be quick to reply.

    • Dr Gaurav Tripathi on

      Hello dheeraj.i want to know the season in 2017 mid may.can we travel at this season to complete circuit of srinagar leh highway and return via manali leh highway.or any other suggestion.we are group of 8-10 members

      • Hello Dr. Gaurav,

        Well, yes, Srinagar – Leh Highway opens by that time and Manali – Leh Highway opens by end of May. Considering the whole road trip will be around 13-15 days there are high chances that you will be able to complete. I will suggest starting the trip by 23-24th o May or later to be on safer side

  36. Hello I m Meghana from Pune, Maharshtra. Exremely grateful for this superb initiative of DOW.
    I am here right now to ask reviews if any of a taxi driver in Ladakh who puts his name as Sanju Leh Ladakh.
    Thank you !

      • Hi ! I had already checked the list… he isn’t listed there.. his contact is listed under ladakh taxi serivces on just dial.. but i have no idea how reliable that is ! He is the only one so far who has been super fast on communication! Also sent me images on whatsapp.. n has asked an advance of only 5000 prior to the trip ! So if i get to know someone who has travelled with him.. would be wonderful!

        • There are 50+ of them and have mostly supported by many travellers who have traveled with them. You can get in touch with others too.

  37. Milad Tangshir on

    Hello dear Dheeraj,
    My name is Milad Tangshir and I’m an Iranian film director based in Turin, Italy. With the Italian studio RossoFuoco we are in the middle of the production of a feature documentary film, called Star Stuff. Please let me give you a synopsis:
    “A journey to 4 observatories in 4 different continents in search for our place in the cosmos. Interviewing the veterans operating those telescopes and uncovering their personal revelations. Exploring the night sky to discover that we all share a dot in the cosmic ocean. And to realize how insignificant are our misunderstandings and our diversities.
    Nearby those observatories, astonishing humans live in remote villages. The film penetrates into their daily life and explores their dreams and passions. 4 places so distant to one another, but inhabited by humans who share the same vulnerability and longing for life.”
    Our four locations are: Chile, India, Canary Islands and South Africa. We have already shot the Canary Islands (La Palma). I’m in the final stages of my research about the Observatory in Hanle, and I came across your very useful website. I know you have precious information and experience about that region. I want to ask if it’s possible that I ask you few questions about this matter.
    Thank you very much for your kind attention.

    All the best
    Milad Tangshir
    http://www.starstuffthemovie.com/

    • Sure, Milad, I will be more than happy to help on providing information related to Hanle. Feel free to post any questions you have or you can always reach me at my email mentioned in the Contact Us page.

      • veenudigreat on

        Chat conversation start

        Sir, i need help for leh trip in last of march. 5 day tour 25 march to 30 march for six young member. pls suggest for what to do we want cover the maximum area of ladakh in 5 days. i call 4 driver you listed in your website he tell me cost 5 days tour 25k to35k. pls tell how many & famous palace cover in five days. pls help plan for trip. we are reach at leh on 25 march 7 .30 a.m.

        • Hello Veenu,

          With just 5 days in hand you will be at the mercy of weather and luck to cover Nubra Valley and Pangong Tso. First two days you have to take rest in Leh and acclimatize so that you do not fall sick. So, follow the below plan:

          Day 1 | Delhi – Leh (By Flight)
          — Checkin at Hotel. Many hotels provide free pick and drop from Airport. Ask while you book them.
          — Take ample of rest as well as water or anything that keep your body hydrated enough. DO NOT OVER HYDRATE. Take ORS Soluted water or ORS – L tetra packs from home.
          — Do not over exert your body at any cost. Avoid too much up-down on stairs or avoid it in entirety, if possible.
          — After 5-6 Hrs of rest you can visit Leh Palace, Local Leh market, Shankar Gompa .
          — If you feel exerted go back to Hotel, have dinner at Hotel and take rest. Avoid any exertion. Else continue and,
          — Follow the sunset by stroll at Changspa road and have a nice dinner on varied cuisines offered in-around Changspa road.
          — Go back to hotel for overnight stay at Leh.
           
          Day 2 | Leh Local Sightseeing + Acclimatization
          — Hire a taxi from Leh taxi stand or Hotel whichever suits you.
          — Bargain hard with taxi driver. Book that single taxi for entire trip after explaining the complete plan.
          — Take his inputs if you feel reasonable and if required modify the plan accordingly but should suits you best.
          — Ask him to be with you guys starting first day itself, if required and charged reasonable else do it at your own.
          — Again DO NOT over exert and take little steps and slow walks only.
          — If feeling OK then do Local sightseeing. To know the about the places to visit check the link: Travel Guide for Local Sightseeing of Leh Town in Ladakh
          — Do not use stairs at any of these places just to see them as it will exert your body much more.
          — Overnight at Leh
           
          Day 3 | Leh – Khardung La – Diskit – Hunder
          — Head for Nubra Valley and stay overnight at Hunder / Diskit
          — On the way enjoy a cup of soup at Highest Motorable Pass (as claimed) Khardung La
          — Diskit has monasteries with tallest lord Buddha statue and Hunder has sand dunes and bacterian camel safari

          Day 4 | Hunder / Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Sumur – Khardung La – Leh
          — Sumur has a famous monastery to check out and Panamik has hot water springs
          — Overnight at Leh

          Day 5 | Leh – Pangong Tso – Leh
          — Do not plan to stay overnight at Pangong Tso as you will not be acclimatized and may fall sick. So, make a day trip only.
          — Overnight at Leh

          Day 6 | Fly back home

  38. Hello there!! I’ve some queries. I’ll really appreciate help.
    I’m along with six members of our family planning to visit Ladakh on the first week of January. We’ll be coming from Bangladesh. From kolkata to leh we’ll be traveling by air. It’ll be a short trip of 2-3 days because after that we’ll be heading to chennai by flight. Now my questions are, is it possible to go there because i heard winter isn’t really a perfect time to visit ladakh, what r the places we can visit at that time?
    Thanks in advance

    • Shafayat, winters are very cold in Ladakh so go prepared and you wont be able to visit much but will end up acclimatizing for couple of days in Leh and then may be make a day trip to Khardung La pass on Day 3 or just explore Sham Valley

  39. Alok Sheoran on

    Greetings

    I have travelled some parts of himalayas with public transport.
    Now I want to travel on 150cc bike solo. is 150 cc a feasible option ?
    Please tell for a beginner what all should i pack and what all should i care about including risks.
    Please reply or best write a detailed article.

  40. Ranabir Ray on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    I am planning to visit Himachal with my wife during mid January. From Delhi we will reach Manali on 15 January.

    The itinerary as i have planned :

    Day 1 – Arrive in Manali. Will do local sightseeing if possible.
    Day 2 – Visit Solan valley and back to Manali.
    Day 3 – Visit Naggar, Manikaran, Kasol. Please let me know if we can visit Kasol and came back to Manali the same day.
    Day 4 – Shoja. We will stay in Shoja if i can arrange FRH or PWD guest house.
    Day 5,6 – Sarhan
    Day 7, 8 – Visit Kalapathar
    Day 9 – Visit Narkanda
    Day 10 – Simla
    Day 11 – Board bus to Delhi

    If Shoja accomodation is not managed then we will stay at Narkanda for 1 more day.

    Please suggest if the itinerary works well. Will this be a kind of hurried plan? Apart from Manali & Shimla, we will be staying in HPTDC hotels only. I hope they provide room heaters during winters. Please let me know your thoughts.

    • Hello Ranabir,

      No need to come back to Manali, you can either stay at Kasol or Naggar only. The plan looks quite relaxed to me but the problem is that road ahead of Shoja will be closed. You should opt for Chindi and then from Chindi you can go over to Sarahan.

      Regards
      Dheeraj

        • Ranabir Ray on

          I was wondering if we need to spend 2+2 days in Sarhan & Karapathar. We haven’t been to these places and would love to visit but is there any other places where we can visit along with these 2 places Or this itinerary is just fine. We would love to have your suggestions. Thanks again for your help.

  41. hey,

    hello,i am planing to visit in himachal pradesh for 8 to 9 days…i want to cover places like shimla,manali,kasol -kheerganga,dharmshala and kaza…can we cover all the places???????would you advice against planning such a trip???and yes whats the best route????planning this trip from kolkata…plz suggest…

    thanks in advance
    ankita

    • Kaza is a bit different territory all together. You can make rest of the places for sure in one go. You can follow a plan like below:

      Day 1 | Reach Shimla from by overnight Volvo from previous night. Check-in and rest at hotel. In the second half explore local Shimla including Shimla Ridge, Mall Road, Lakkar Bazaar, Back to Hotel By Evening.
      Day 2 | Shimla – Narkanda – Hatu Peak – Narkanda – Shimla OR you can do Shimla – Kufri – Chail – Shimla OR Shimla – Naldhera – Tattapani – Shimla
      Day 3 | Shimla – Manali
      Day 4 | Manali Local sightseeing which includes Hadimba Temple, Manu Temple, Mall Road, Local Monastery, Vashisth Hot Water Springs (never found it interesting), Hike the woods around Old Manali, Jogni Falls etc.
      Day 5 | Manali – Snow Point either at Solang Valley or Marhi/Gulaba on the way to Rohtang Pass or Rohtang Pass if safe to reach there. Enjoy in snow and come back to Manali and on the way do paragliding at Solang Valley, if required.
      Day 6 | Manali – Naggar Castle – Kasol
      Day 7,8 | Spend time in Kasol for a day or two. If in summers, you can make a trip to Kheerganga
      Day 9 | Start back to Delhi

      • vivek dhaka on

        Hi Dheeraj,

        I quickly need to support as we (3 friends) are planning to Air trip to leh on 1st Dec -o4th Dec 16. this trip is just to visit Leh and Pangong. kindly suggest the details and contact person for Taxi and Hotel.

        Thanks.

        • Vivek, For the leh – ladakh taxi union rate list 2016 – 17 including the contacts of some reliable taxi drivers within Leh – Ladakh, check the link here. You can get about 12-15% of discount by directly getting in touch with drivers and of course, talking in person rather on phone always help in bargaining more.

          Day 1 | Delhi – Leh (By Flight)
          — Checkin at Hotel. Many hotels provide free pick and drop from Airport. Ask while you book them.
          — Take ample of rest as well as water or anything that keep your body hydrated enough. DO NOT OVER HYDRATE. Take ORS Soluted water or ORS – L tetra packs from home.
          — Do not over exert your body at any cost. Avoid too much up-down on stairs or avoid it in entirety, if possible.
          — After 5-6 Hrs of rest you can visit Leh Palace, Local Leh market, Shankar Gompa .
          — If you feel exerted go back to Hotel, have dinner at Hotel and take rest. Avoid any exertion. Else continue and,
          — Follow the sunset by stroll at Changspa road and have a nice dinner on varied cuisines offered in-around Changspa road.
          — Go back to hotel for overnight stay at Leh.
           
          Day 2 | Leh Local Sightseeing + Acclimatization
          — Hire a taxi from Leh taxi stand or Hotel whichever suits you.
          — Bargain hard with taxi driver. Book that single taxi for entire trip after explaining the complete plan.
          — Take his inputs if you feel reasonable and if required modify the plan accordingly but should suits you best.
          — Ask him to be with you guys starting first day itself, if required and charged reasonable else do it at your own.
          — Again DO NOT over exert and take little steps and slow walks only.
          — If feeling OK then do Local sightseeing. To know the about the places to visit check the link: Travel Guide for Local Sightseeing of Leh Town in Ladakh
          — Do not use stairs at any of these places just to see them as it will exert your body much more.
          — Overnight at Leh
          Day 3 | Day trip to Khardung La
          Day 4 | Day trip to Pangong Tso

  42. Joemon Kurain on

    Dear Dheeraj,

    We are from bangalore. planning for a bike ride from manali to leh in the month of june 2017. We are 6 people ( 3 couples). Can you please suggest a good road trip package from manali, considering ladies in the our group.

    • Firstly, I will suggest you that please plan it in other direction as going via Srinagar – Leh Highway will be much much easier on your body and help you acclimatize to the high altitude of Manali – Leh Highway. Also, it allows you to enjoy the beauty of Manali – Leh by splitting the journey almost evenly in two days which is very difficult in the other direction. Thirdly, it will allow you to fit Tso Moriri lake into the itinerary in better way. You can read more reasons on the link here

      You can check a very balanced and most common itinerary for Leh – Ladakh followed by many travellers including me at the link here for 13-14 days: Most Common Itinerary for Leh – Ladakh.

      You can check the nice, preferred list of accommodation options in entire Leh – Ladakh (Leh, Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri) including moderate (cheap budget hotels as well) in the series of articles starting on the link here

  43. ADITYA K BAFNA on

    sir grt work ur giving pricless information which many ppl dont share ,nice work vey much respect for u …. i hv one question in mind from 2 yrs didnt find any solution im shure u ll help me with it … how to visit siachin base camp ,cause permit is required ,where i can get that permit ,wheather i can get permit if i dont have any contacts in army ????? too many q but im trying hard to get ans for a long tym hope u ll help with it ????

    • Aditya, you can get the permits for Siachen base camp by visiting the army CO office in Leh and getting the permits from the army. Else yes if you have contacts in army they can help you provide the reference which makes it a bit easy.

  44. Soham Gambhir on

    Hello Dheeraj

    Okay this may sound crazy but me and my parents (age near about 50) have decided to visit Leh in mid-january next year and our tickets are already done so we are determined for this adventure. Now I know and have read that it is not advisable and everything and we don’t really expect to sight see a lot.

    In fact we just want to travel very less after landing in leh. We will be there for s total of e days and since first day would just be to acclimitize, we will be having only three days in which we just want to cover local sightseeing points which do not demand a lot of travelling. Fair amount of travel here I mean is about 2 hours driving at max.

    It will be really helpful if you could throw in some pointers regarding any special care that we must take and most importantly which places would be the most ideal for us? If it’s not too much to ask, it will br really appreciable if you could draw up a rough brief itinerary.

    Much Thanks in advance buddy.

    • Hello Soham,

      You should read: 6 Special Tips for a Winter Trip to Ladakh

      Day 1 | Delhi – Leh (By Flight)
      — Checkin at Hotel. Many hotels provide free pick and drop from Airport. Ask while you book them.
      — Take ample of rest as well as water or anything that keep your body hydrated enough. DO NOT OVER HYDRATE. Take ORS Soluted water or ORS – L tetra packs from home.
      — Do not over exert your body at any cost. Avoid too much up-down on stairs or avoid it in entirety, if possible.
      — After 5-6 Hrs of rest you can visit Leh Palace, Local Leh market, Shankar Gompa .
      — If you feel exerted go back to Hotel, have dinner at Hotel and take rest. Avoid any exertion. Else continue and,
      — Follow the sunset by stroll at Changspa road and have a nice dinner on varied cuisines offered in-around Changspa road.
      — Go back to hotel for overnight stay at Leh.
       
      Day 2 | Leh Local Sighseeing + Acclimatization
      — Hire a taxi from Leh taxi stand or Hotel whichever suits you.
      — Bargain hard with taxi driver. Book that single taxi for entire trip after explaining the complete plan.
      — Take his inputs if you feel reasonable and if required modify the plan accordingly but should suits you best.
      — Ask him to be with you guys starting first day itself, if required and charged reasonable else do it at your own.
      — Again DO NOT over exert and take little steps and slow walks only.
      — If feeling OK then do Local sightseeing. To know the about the places to visit check the link: Travel Guide for Local Sightseeing of Leh Town in Ladakh
      — Do not use stairs at any of these places just to see them as it will exert your body much more.
      — Overnight at Leh
       
      Day 3 | Leh – Sham Valley Tour
      — Sham Valley include Alchi, Likir, Basgo Palace, Magnetic Hills, Confluence at Nimmu, Gurudwara Pather Sahib
      — Overnight stay in Leh

      Day 4 | Make a day trip to Khardung La or take monastery tour to Hemis, Thicksey and Shey monasteries

  45. Hi Dheeraj

    have read your article Winter trek to Prashar Lake.

    Now this year we are planing to trek to Prashar lake in December near year time. Would like to know how many days prior we need to book the guest house? also if this year shall we get good amount snow there at that time?

    • Krishanu, December ideally is not good time in case you want to see snow at Prashar unless it snows during that time. You should be lucky to get snow in December. However, the trek will have snow on the way and road may not be open during that time.

        • Yes, road will be open till Baggi vilagge and about 10 KMs beyond it. There are two routes one through woods which takes 10 KM but need a local guide and the road is 20 KM long.

  46. poonam deepak chawla on

    hi dheeraj i am from mumbai i had already visted to leh ladakh in june 2015 i have enter to leh from kashmir and end my trip to manali route. i was great experience.

    now i want to travel to spiti valley i want to enter from shimla and come out from manali . or vis vera pls suggest how to travel. and what is the best reason.

  47. Jwalant Shah on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    I am planning to take a course on Basic Skiing in Jan’17 at the Jawahar Institute of Mountaineering & Winter Sports at Pahalgam in J&K. The course duration is from 3-16 Jan’17.

    I was hoping if it will be possible to visit Kargil during Jan’17. I have not yet done my bookings, so I can plan either before the course or after.

    Hope you would be able to help me based on your experience with the terrain and its weather conditions.

  48. milind thakur on

    Dear Dheeraj

    I am planning to drive the Delhi -leh – manali circuit in July/august 2017.

    I have a couple of questions.

    1 is it ok to drive Automatic four wheel drive in ladakh. I am going to hire a vehicle from Delhi.

    2. if yes which is the appropriate automatic vehicle in your opinion.

    Thanks

    Milind

    • Hi Milind,

      Outside rented vehicles are not allowed to roam for sightseeing in Ladakh. They can come in and go away from Leh only. You have to hire a local taxi within Ladakh for sightseeing purposes and can use the outside rented vehicle for only drop in and drop out of Leh

  49. ADITYA K BAFNA on

    sir grt work ur giving pricless information which many ppl dont share ,nice work vey much respect for u …. i hv one question in mind from 2 yrs didnt find any solution im shure u ll help me with it … how to visit siachin base camp ,cause permit is required ,where i can get that permit ,wheather i can get permit if i dont have any contacts in army ????? too many q but im trying hard to get ans for a long tym hope u ll help with it ????

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