Hanle Village | The Hidden Gems of Ladakh

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Hanle Village, Changthang Valley – Ladakh

Hanle in Changthang region of Ladakh is one of the most beautiful, enchanting, calm and soul loosing places in India. Hanle has a lovely Hanle Monastery offering some great aerial views of whole village that is a home of about 1000 people. The views from the top of monastery are just breath-taking. Hanle also houses an Indian Astronomical Observatory which is the world’s highest observatory in the world at a staggering height of 4500 Mtrs. The Hanle Observatory is operated by Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bengaluru and currently the second highest optical observatory in the world, with an installed telescope of about 2.01 meters (6.5 feet) diameter.

Hanle Village… An Aerial View…
Hanle Village... An Aerial View...

Hanle Village… The Backdrop View…
Hanle Village... The Backdrop View...
Beautiful Colors of Hanle Monastery…
Beautiful Colors of Hanle Monastery
Hanle Observatory @ 4500 Mtrs… Highest in the World…
Hanle Observatory at 4500 Mtrs... Highest in the World...
Hanle Observatory @ 4500 Mtrs… Highest in the World…
Hanle Observatory at 4500 Mtrs... Highest in the World...
Hanle Village… Another Aerial View…
Hanle Village... Another Aerial View...

Hanle is about 150 KMs from Mahe and the road runs through Nyoma and then Loma, where you need to pass the bridge on right that takes you to Hanle further 50 KMs ahead of Loma. Hats off to BRO, that they have created such smooth roads in the cold desert at such high altitude and harsh conditions. As you move towards Hanle, the size of the mountains starts to decrease and you start witnessing a series of small mountains clustered together giving a feeling of a different world altogether. The journey to Nyoma – Loma and up to Hanle is extremely nice with beautiful vistas all around you and in fact it is one of those journeys which I can go ever and ever again… I had never been to such a beautiful place ever. Roads could look like freshly laid but with caution, do not cruise as there are inverted bumps left on the roads so that the water passes through them. Such bumps can damage your vehicle, so be careful with the drive :)…

Pristine… The Cold Desert – Changthang…
Pristine... The Cold Desert - Changthang
Leading all the way to Hanle from Nyoma…
Leading all the way to Hanle from Nyoma
Reflections at Loma…
Reflections at Loma
Kiangs… The Tibetan Wild Asses…
Kiangs... The Tibetan Wild Asses...
A Kiang… Perfectly Posing…
A Kiang... Perfectly Posing...
Magical… Roads of Changthang…
Magical... Roads of Changthang...

Hanle is very near to the Line of Actual Control, so one need to get Inner Line Permit to visit it. You can get more details on Inner Line Permits at the link: Inner Line Permits for Leh – Ladakh

The place is actually very scenic and feels out of the world. However, in actual reality the place is extremely harsh and difficult to survive especially in winters. There is only one cemented accommodation available around the lake and the facilities like electricity, medical aid, hot running water, western toilets etc. are rare to find. The lack of oxygen makes survival difficult if your body is not properly acclimatized to its high altitude. Hence, one need to plan his/her journey extremely carefully to make it acute mountain sickness free vacation.

A Beautiful Morning at Hanle…
A Beautiful Morning at Hanle
Pastures of Hanle…
Pastures of Hanle
Handsome Horse at Hanle…
Handsome Horse at Hanle
Handsome Horse at Hanle… Another one…
Handsome Horse at Hanle
Location

Hanle is located about 275 KMs from Leh town of Ladakh district.

Altitude

Hanle village is one of the high altitudes villages in Ladakh at a staggering altitude close to 4300 Meters (not sure about actual)…

Season for Traveling to Hanle – Ladakh

In December to March, Hanle remains mostly frozen, extremely cold conditions with only options to stay as homestays that may not be as convenient option for you. In April types, it starts to get a bit warm and one can afford to sleep even in home stays, I did the same :)… Then, May to September it is a very pleasant season to visit Hanle and a lot of tourist visit this place now. Come October and November, the tourists starts to reside completely as cold starts to set in again and you start to again feel a bit uncomfortable at Homestays but it is still manageable.

The Light Play on the way to Hanle…
The Light Play on the way to Hanle
How to Reach Hanle – Ladakh
Route from Leh to Hanle

This is the general route to Hanle that most people take to visit this ever beautiful place in Ladakh. You can reach in about 9 – 10 Hrs depending upon the number of break you take in between. The route along with distance between the subsequent places is as follows:

Leh – Karu (36 KMs) – Upshi (13 KMs) – Kumdok (19 KMs) – Kere (53 KMs) – Chumathang (34 KMs) – Mahe (22 KMs) – Nyoma (25 KMs) – Loma (22 KMs) – Hanle(51 KMs) = 275 KMs

You can cover Thicksey, Hemis and Shey monasteries while going through this route, if you haven’t covered them earlier while going to Pangong Tso. This route provides the best road conditions among all other routes. So, if you are one of those who prefer relaxing vacation and do not want to rush through places then, I will suggest make a 3 day trip to Hanle via this route from Leh. Of course, I assume your body has been acclimatized properly by staying for couple of nights in Leh and spending a night or two in Nubra Valley as well before attempting to sleep in cold desert of Changthang at Hanle. If you are short on time then you can also exit towards Manali via Manali – Leh Highway via Hanle and then to Tso Moriri via this route only but you need to ensure you have enough fuel to cover about 850 KMs without any fuel pump.

Route from Pangong Tso Lake to Hanle

There exist a direct route between Hanle / Tso Moriri and Pangong Tso as well and in most general cases, you will always be doing it from direct route of Pangong Tso to Hanle because you can exit Ladakh from Tso Moriri towards Manali – Leh Highway after visiting Hanle and Tso Moriri without coming back towards Leh. Secondly, both Hanle and Tso Moriri is higher than Pangong Tso so as per acclimatization schedule you should stay near Pangong Tso before spending night at Hanle and Tso Moriri. However, all depends subject to the approval of permits for this route via Chusul. Foreigners anyhow are not at all allowed to go beyond Man – Merak Villages as permits are not issued to them for this route.

Spangmik (Pangong Tso) – Man (9 KMs) – Merak (12 KMs)– Kakstet (4 KMs) – Chusul (24 KMs) – Tsaga La (33 KMs) – Tsaga Village (20 KMs) – Loma (23 KMs) – Hanle(51 KMs) = 176 KMs

Route from Hanle to Tso Moriri

After visiting Hanle, you can opt to go towards Tso Moriri from where either you can go to Ladakh or you can exit towards Manali via Manali Leh Highway. There exist two routes to reach Tso Moriri from Hanle, one via Mahe bridge and other via Chumur. Below is the route which you can follow to reach Tso Moriri from Hanle via Mahe bridge:

Hanle – Loma (51 KMs) – Nyoma (22 KMs) – Mahe (25 KMs) – Sumdo (10 KMs) – Tso Moriri / Korzok (53 KMs) = 161 KMs

The other route goes via Chumur whose permits are hard to come by but if you are able to get them then nothing gets better and adventurous on your Ladakh journey. Below is the route which you can follow to reach Tso Moriri from Hanle via Chummur village:

Hanle – Salsal La (62 KMs) – Charchagan La (23 KMs) – Tso Moriri / Korzok (60 KMs) = 145 KMs

You need to make sure you carry fuel for about 700 – 800 KMs because you will be covering Leh – Pangong Tso – Nyoma – Loma – Hanle – Tso Moriri – Leh without any other petrol pump. And if you want to exit Ladakh through Manali – Leh Highway from Tso Moriri then also carry petrol/diesel for about 900 – 1000 KMs as the next petrol pump will be available at Tandi. Otherwise, you need to come back to Karu or Upshi, refill and move back again towards Manali – Leh Highway.

A Lovely Y-Fork at Hanle…
A Lovely Y-Fork at Hanle
Preferred Vehicles

The higher ground clearance vehicles are preferable and 4×4 ones would definitely be helpful especially between Pangong Tso and Tso Moriri via Man – Merak – Chusul – Nyoma (Changthang) route AND Tso Moriri to Hanle via Chumur. However, for general route via Chumathang or Mahe bridge, quite a few people do it in hatchbacks and sedans as well which depends upon your skills to drive and road conditions at the time of travel.

Suggested Itinerary for Hanle – Ladakh

Generally, at least two night stay is preferable to truly witness the mesmerizing beauty and vistas at Hanle including the night sky watch. Of course, one night stay will also help you watch a star studded night sky, an opportunity to capture some galaxy in your camera. Generally I prefer like:

Day 1 | Leh – Upshi – Chumathang – Nyoma – Loma – Hanle

  • Cover Landscapes eroute
  • Overnight at Hanle

Day 2 | Hanle

  • Cover Hanle Monastery and Hanle Observatory
  • A leisure walks in the pasture lands of Hanle
  • Overnight at Hanle

Day 3 | Hanle – Tso Moriri via Mahe OR Chumur (if permits allowed)

  • Cover Korzok Monastery
  • Overnight at Tso Moriri

Day 4 | Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Debring – Taglang La – Rumste – Upshi – Karu – Leh

  • Cover Tso Kar Lake and Taglang La (some part of Manali – Leh Highway)
  • Overnight at Leh

You can also check the most common and very well balanced itinerary for whole Leh – Ladakh region covering all major tourist destination including Srinagar – Leh Highway and Manali – Leh Highway, at the below link: Most Common Itinerary for Leh – Ladakh

Accommodation Options at Hanle – Ladakh

The homestays at village Khaldo very very close to observatory. One is near the start of the village and has a landline phone. Ask people about homestay which has phone. The rooms are decent but the prices are hay-way as the owner is greedy types. There is one more homestay at the end of this village just before pasture land starts which is run by a lady named Padmadeskit Homestay (ask for this name). We stayed at this only and found it OK to stay. Do not expect too much out of a homestay. This one is more loyal to tourists as other one charge too much if he sees more tourists.

Update 2013: Padma Homestay in Hanle has been converted into a kind of decent guest house in 2013 and when I visited there in September 2013, there were 4-5 rooms there with one room having attached bath and others sharing a common bath. A big room for dining. You can read my review here in the DoW Community link: Padma (Sonam’s) Guest House/Homestay, Hanle | Review

Contact Details of Padma Homestay Hanle – Ladakh
  • Contact Person: Mr. Sonam Dorjay
  • Attributes: Very good friend of mine, knows DoW and its vision very well, very down to earth local ready to support & help other locals of the village
  • Contact Number: 09469224302, 09419834944, 08991922029,
  • Email: sonamdorjay19@gmail.com, sonamdorjay15@gmail.com
  • Location: Hanle, Khaldo
Medical Facilities near Hanle – Ladakh

The nearest basic medical health center may be available at Korzok Village though I am not that sure about it. You can get basic first aid including Oxygen doses at some of the tents/camps, I guess.

Food Joints near Hanle – Ladakh

Being a remote place, you will either be eating in the home stay or at Hanle observatory guest house in which you might be staying overnight if you get the bookings.

Phone Signals at Hanle – Ladakh

You will not find any mobile signals at Hanle Village but there is one and ONLY one satellite public phone installed at a house in Khaldo Village near Hanle. The home with a phone also offers homestay accommodation

Petrol Pumps near Hanle – Ladakh

Nearest Petrol Pump is at Karu (about 240 KMs) from Hanle and comes on the way to Hanle from Leh via Chumathang / Mahe Bridge. I will suggest that you top-up the fuel from Leh / Karu itself and then drive/ride up to Hanle.

ATMs near Hanle – Ladakh

You will not find any ATMs near Hanle and hence, it is always better to carry cash from Leh (the only place where you find ATM in Ladakh) itself.

Conclusion

It is one of the most beautiful places in the whole Trans Himalayas, I will say, to visit. Hence, if it is your may be second or third visit to Ladakh and you are keen of finding some secluded place with a different feeling and aura then this one surely is not the place you would like to exclude from your plan. I hope the above information will be useful for your upcoming Leh – Ladakh trip.

Please feel free to post any queries or doubts you might have in planning your trip to Leh – Ladakh or Hanle, in the comments section below. If you have been to Hanle before, kindly share your thoughts and other information you might feel will be worth sharing with other fellow travelers and will prove helpful to them.

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120 Comments

  1. Hello Dheeraj,

    We had spoken earlier on Ladakh trip. One more question I have. We planned to travel from Pangong to Tso Moriri. But the person who is renting the bike is suggesting to come back to Leh and go again from Leh. But we so want to visit Tso Moriri directly from Pangong. In the itinerary of yours we have seen that you have stayed in Hanley. Even we planned to do the same. Will there be any difficulty as suggested by the rental person or is it possible to carry the itinerary forward. FYI : We are planning to travel in the month of September end.

    • Abhi, well, if you are able to ensure spare fuel it should be OK. But since it is rented bike, in case of an issue, the rental guy will charge good money so you need to be aware of such clauses and all.

  2. Dheeraj Bhai,

    Bothering you again. 😛

    I have a few options & with current road scenario as of 2016, I would like to take up your advice.

    Route 1: Diskit-Khalsar-Agham-Shyok-Tangste-Lukung-Spangmik-Man-Merak-Chushul

    Can it be done in a day??? Or should I break down at Lukung/Spangmik??? I have read your articles on Road Conditions and the way you described the Agham-Shyok Section, am sure it will be similar to Dante’s Seven Rungs of Hell.
    😛 😛

    Route 2: Diskit-Khalsar-Agham-Tangyar-Wari La-Tathok-Sakti-Chang La-Durbuk-Tangste-Lukung-Spangmik.

    How will this route be in July of 2017??? I’ve heard this route has been better esp the Wari La & Chang La ascend and descend. (Information sourced from few travelers who did in 2016 but not from Ground Sources).
    This route can be done in a day??? Or will be crazy if I attempt even Chushul as halt for the night instead of Spangmik or Lukung (as my destination is Hanle and Pangong is just a transit location) :-/

    3. My another and most important headache!!! Chushul to Hanle!!!! 🙁

    Chushul-Satatho La-Khaksang La-Hor La-Mahe-Nyoma-Loma-Rhongo-Hanle
    (actually want to see the Mirpal Tso & Yaye Tso).
    But I heard Army hardly allows tourists through that route and by far the most neglected & secluded route of entire Ladakh Circuit. Is it really so???? I know Khaksang La is the 2nd highest pass after Marsimik La, but will the difficulty be of the same level as Marsimik La???
    Also if we are lucky and any off chance Army allows us transit through this route, the above route I can do in a day??

    4. Chushul-Rezang La Memorial-Tsaga La-Tsaga-Loma-Rhongo-Hanle

    I am open to this route too, but I have not been able to scour any updated info on this route as of now. All I know is it is very close to Indo China and any wrong turn may lead us to Chinese Territory. I don’t want to be a Chinese Prisoner!!!! 🙁
    So am a bit apprehensive of this route even though it is less in terms of difficulty compared to Khaksang La Route. So any latest info on this route will be highly appreciated.

    5. Is Kyun Tso 1 & 2 a day trip from Hanle. I’ve heard it is a 6 hr up down journey though completely a beaten track. Are there any roads now or still the same???

    6. Which route you suggest from Hanle to Tso Moriri??? Hanle-Loma-Nyoma-Sumdo-Korzok????

    Sorry for this “Dissertation” in the name of a query. Hope you shall bear with me.

    TIA!!!!

    • I am so sorry that I am unable to reply. Things are a bit messy but I assure you that I will reply over weekend to all pending queries including yours. Please bear for couple of days.

    • 1. Route 1 can be done in One day, start a bit early in the day.
      2. Wari La will be open in latey July. Yes, this route is better than Agham – shyok any day but it is a longer route, so again start early to reach Spangmik in the evening. Chusul may be too much on this day with Wari La and Changla
      3. I will highly not recommend the Kaksang La route for a lone vehicle.
      4. You have to follow the route of Chusul – Tsaga – Loma – Rhongo only
      5. Yes, Kyon Tso 1 and Kyon Tso 2 can easily be done in a day from Hanle.
      6. Yes, I will recommend that route only if you have not done it.

  3. Hello Dhiraj Bhai,
    🙂 🙂
    Posting a query after a long time. We are a group of friends planning for our Ladakh Sojourn 2.0 (1st week of July). This time we are mostly focusing on Nubra Valley, Shyok Valley (Turtuk), Hanle, Tso Moriri, Tso Kar.

    My itinerary is as follows:

    Day 1: Dibrugarh –> Delhi
    Day 2: Delhi –> Manali
    Day 3: Manali –> Keylong/Jispa
    Day 4: Keylong/Jispa –> Leh Town
    Day 5: Leh Local + Permits
    Day 6: Nubra Valley
    Day 7: Nubra Valley
    Day 8: Nubra Valley –> Leh
    Day 9: Leh –> Hanle
    Day 10: Hanle –> Leh
    Day 11: Leh –> Tso Moriri
    Day 12: Tso Moriri –> Tso Kar–> Pang/Sarchu
    Day 13: Pang/Sarchu –> Manali
    Day 14: Manali –> Delhi/Chandigarh
    Day 15: Delhi –> Dibrugarh

    You may have noticed, I did an audacious effort on days 10th, 11th & 12th.

    Now I have the following queries hope you can answer:

    1. Hanle requires special permits as far as I know. But if we are to travel from Hanle to Tso Moriri, shall we need any other permits or the Special Permit for Hanle shall be suffice???

    2. As you may have checked my itinerary, where do you think we should give a halt on Day 12 after traversing Tso Moriri & Tso Kar??? Do you think Pang shall be better or should we drive ahead to Sarchu considering accomodation options at Pang are scant??? Or should we be brave enough to drive up to Jispa (I know the idea itself is crazy, but want an expert opinion taking into consideration we shall leave at break of dawn from Tso Moriri).

    3. Accommodation facilities at Hanle???? Is pre booking needed (I wonder how is that even possible) or we can find with a bit of searching???

    4. Also, is it possible to rent a vehicle in Leh on Day 9 itself from Leh for Hanle–>Tso Moriri–>Tso Kar & exit through the Manali Leh Highway???? In such a case we won’t have to come back to Leh from Hanle for renting a vehicle for our journey to Manali and the very same vehicle we hired for Hanle from Leh can take us all to Manali.
    Is it feasible??? Also what shall be the approximate tariff if I rent out the vehicle as per above schedule from Day 9 up to Day 13???

    Hope you can answer my queries.

    Thanks in advance!!!!
    🙂

    • Hi Bikash,

      How about a little tweak in plan:

      Day 8: Nubra Valley –> Pangong Tso
      Day 9: Pangong Tso –> Hanle via Chusul – Tsaga – Loma route (You will need permits for Chusul, Tsaga, Loma and Hanle)
      Day 10: Hanle –> Tso Moriri
      Day 11: Use this day anywhere you like like in Hanle or Pangong Tso or Tso Moriri
      Day 12: Tso Moriri –> Tso Kar – Pang / Sarchu

      This will be more beautiful and adventurous. Now coming to questions:

      1. You just need permits for Chusul, Hanle, Loma and Hanle from DC office and that’s it.
      2. Try to make it to Sarchu, you should be able to make it if you leave early from Tso Moriri and spend less time at Tso Kar.
      3. Check: http://padmahomestay.in/ and that’s the only opions with western toilets in Hanle. You should be able to book it in advance.
      4. Talk tot he list of drivers from DoW Community and the plan I suggested above should be fine to most of the drivers and I will highly recommend to book someone like Rigzin or Sonam in advance for such a tour.

      • Hello Dheeraj Bhai,

        Once again you have proven to be a life saver!!!! 🙂 🙂

        I needed this final push regarding Sarchu on Day 12. You provided the spark. I agree with whatever you say and follow religiously. But I beg to differ with Pangong Tso visit. I did that already you know. I missed Tso Moriri & Tso Kar last time. So focusing on that.
        Also considering the sacrilege Pangong Tso is going through with over load of Tourists, it pains me to see such a mesmerizing Lake slowly turning in to a commercial hub with utter disregard for the same. Unless some sort of embargo is levied on influx of Tourists, Pangong Tso is a Doomsday yet to happen. I shall do my part & won’t venture now and add to more vehicular exhaust, disposable/degradable litter to that place.
        Am from North East India Dheeraj Bhai & we have Sela Lake, Tsong Mo, Gurudongmar, Aritar Lake etc and thankfully they are still the same relatively untouched. Pangong experience was very bad for me seeing the current scenario.

        I shall take up all your advice & definitely check out Padma Homestay & have a talk with Rigzin.

        Profund thanks from my part.
        🙂 (y)

        • Bikash, well, though I agree every bit and respect your sentiments as responsible traveller but buddy the route from Pangong Tso to Chusul to Hanle is extrememly beautiful. I would not miss that route in case I have not been to it. It traverses through Changthang Plateu and is one of my most favorite regions in Ladakh. So, it is not just about visiting Pangong Tso but living that route. Also, please note that yo can stay away from Pangong Tso and reach Chusul directly or stay at Tangtse and take Harong – Earth road from tangtse to Chusul. If you take Harog – Earth road to Chusul from Tangtse, you will not travel to Pangong Tso and your efforts to save the lake and doing your individual bit can also be taken care 🙂

        • Thanks again Dheeraj Bhai!!!!

          As you say!!!! I was not disappointed with Spiti following your advice and am sure this time this route you suggested from Pangong to Hanle too I shall be as brilliant as you said. I shall modify the itinerary & let you know of tweaks and changes I shall make and shall take your consultation into consideration.

          🙂

        • Awesome, I bet the route from Pangong Tso to Chusul to Hanle will offer you some of the most amazing views you may have seen as a traveller, if not the best 🙂

  4. Hi Dheeraj,
    Thanks in ton for writing such a wonderful article. It inspires and provides very useful information. In general, information provided by DoW is very helpful in planning our road trips.
    We will be doing road trip to Ladakh in July 2017. We will start from Pune. We will follow Pune……. kishtwar – Killlar – Sach pass – Jispa – Tso moriri – Hanle – Pangong – Leh – Lamayuru – Shrinagar – …..Pune.
    I have read above that we need permit to visit Hanle. As we want to exit from Shrinagar side, to go Leh first (to get permit) then do Hanle and again return to Leh is going to add lots of travel. Our whole schedule will get disturbed.
    So, How to get permit to go to Hanle from Jispa side ? Please guide us. Thanks.
    Subhash.

  5. Hello Dhiraj Bhai,

    Bothering you once again. 😛

    Well the thing is, I have 15 days & want to do only Nubra Valley, Hanle & Tso Moriri. Basically, backpacking & photography tour. Can you suggest how to break up the days in between the 3 locations???? I am planning a week in Nubra, 5 days in Hanle & 3 days in Tso Moriri. I want good shots so I need to explore all these locations with ample amount of time.

    Also what is eating me is, shall I be able to hitch hike or find shared Cab/Taxi from Hanle to Tso Moriri and also from Tso Moriri to Manala/Keylong/Jispa etc or do I need to get back to Leh for that????

    Your site helped me a lot in My Spiti Expedition & I got decent pictures. Now I want the Offbeat Ladakh experience & my own Zen in these three places.

    • Hello Bikash,

      1. Hitch hiking part will be difficult I will say at these remote locations and you will be at mercy of very handful of people. So, I suspect that part and it will be better of coming off to Leh or do it on bike trip. The roads to Hanle and Tso Moriri should be fine for a bike ride even if you are a OK rider as none pass through high passes. So, better that you take bike with you. The plan you can do is to first rest couple of days in Leh, move to Nubra Valley and must visit Turtuk for a day or two. Then, come down to Leh and move to Hanle from there. From Hanle move to tso Moriri directly and finally to Leh and back to Manali. This shall be the flow of the trip.

  6. Hi Dheeraj,

    I plan to take shared taxi from Leh to Tso Moriri and stay overnight there. Next day, travel back to Leh.

    My question is Am i able to get shared taxi from Tso Moriri back to Leh?

    May i know what is cost for one way shared taxi?

    PAP permit is required for foreigner to visit Nubra valley, pangong tso &Tso moriri, am i right?

    Hope to hear from you soon. Thank you.

    • You are alone/couple and private taxis are very costly in Leh but you will be able to find the shared taxi without much fuss at all. There are lots of flyers which people put at cafes, dine-ins, restaurants, travel agent desks/shops/whiteboards wanting to share the taxis for different trips within Ladakh. Even travel agent organize such shared taxis trip as well but charge a little higher about Rs 200-300 more than it would ideally cost. So, in worst case you can always go back to them and book a seat for yourself. Gelling up with people in Ladakh is more or less easy because many people travel solo and look forward to meet new people and share cultural thoughts and values over the trip. No where else in the world you will find more smiling and helpful people as Ladakhis are 🙂

      Yea PAP is required for foreigners.

  7. hello dheeraj
    i ll be visiting leh-ladak and surroundings from chandigarh via chandigarh manali route while starting and via srinagar while coming back
    so if i wanted to visit hanle and turtuk
    how should my itinerary be
    and how many days should i keep leaving from chandigarh and coming back to chandigarh
    thanks

  8. Arihant Jain on

    Hello
    Can you please suggest whether or not the following itinery will work or not-
    Day 1 North Ladakh
    Day 2 Exit Hunder through shyok to reach pangong
    Day3 Leave pangong for hanle
    Day 4 leave hanle for tso moriri
    Day 5 leave tso moriri for leh

    I know the fuel can be a problem. Will I get any fuel station in the above routes?
    Waiting for your reply

  9. we are reach on leh 28 august evening ,can you suggest itinerary for 7 day’s from 29,including Hanle village

  10. gouri sankar dey on

    Thanks to MR. DHEERAJ ,
    the data from DOW helps us a lots for our tour for leh ladak kashmir ( 28 oct to 8 nov 2015).We got the driver karma sonam for our tours.he is very gentle man i had ever seen .his contact no 9419215110. So friend kindly contact him for ur upcoming leh ladak tours.In our tour we cover delhi—- leh—nubra—pangong —-hanle —-leh via chumathang—-kargil—–sonmarg—-srinagar—–gulmarg—–pahelgam—-vaishno devi—delhi.

  11. Dheeraj,

    Thanks to you and DOW, we had an awesome trip this September but couldn’t see Tso Moriri and Hanle. Will go again hopefully the next year. Thanks a ton

    Regards
    Priya

  12. we are there from Oct 17 till Oct 23, with a 4Y kid
    hope it will not be too much chilllllll

  13. Hi. Four of us are planning a trip in September. We’d like to visit Hanle, but the catch is we’re entering Ladakh via Manali. So our itinerary is Manali – Jispa – Sarchu – Tso Moriri – Hanle – Pangong – Leh. My question is, will there be permit issues? And since we’re reaching Leh in the end, can we obtain a permit from somewhere else besides Leh? Thanks…

    • Anirudh, apart from the permit issues, you will need to acclimatize as well and following such a plan you or someone in the group may end up in a disaster state of health owing to AMS with unacclimatized bodies and continual increment of altitude abruptly. So, better reach Leh, rest there, make a trip to Nubra to further acclimatize, apply for inner line permits and then travel this route.

  14. Hi Dheeraj,

    First of all,, thanks a tonne for your write ups.. they are immensely helpful for trip planning and preparations besides being a fab read…
    I wanted to know if its feasible to go to Hanle via shared Jeeps from Leh… If yes.. can you suggest places to enquire in Leh

      • Oh.. Thanks Dheeraj jee .. But bus won’t be feasible as buses for both Pangong and Hanle leave on Saturday/Sunday and am planning to do Pangong on Sunday and Hanle the nest week…:-(.. Can you also throw some light on the following:-

        1>What are the places to get informaton about jeep trips to Nubra, Pangong etc like whether a spare seat is available with a group ..hitch rides etc…
        2>How about a bike ride to Hanle.. are the road conditions OK for bike.. Is it possible to have a night halt at Chumathang to have it a bit easy..

        As u can see…Reading ur travelouges has made me all worked up for Hanle..:-)

        • 1. There are lots of flyers which people put at cafes, dine-ins, restaurants, travel agent desks/shops/whiteboards wanting to share the taxis for different trips within Ladakh. Even travel agent organize such shared taxis trip as well but charge a little higher about Rs 200-300 more than it would ideally cost. So, in worst case you can always go back to them and book a seat for yourself.

          2. Road conditions from Leh to Hanle via Chumathang are good most of the places well tarred, so that is one option for sure in case you do know how to ride in hills.

  15. arka Datta on

    Sir, is it absolutely necessary to have inner line permit for hanle and tso moiriri… I thought after 2014, Indian citizens don’t need it…

    Will the taxi driver able to take it out for us….
    We are 10 people in the group. And how much will it cost??

  16. sohamkundu1992 on

    Hi Dheeraj,
    I need a little help. Please let me know whether the following itinerary(from Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri) is possible!

    Day 1:Pangong Tso-Marsimik La- Lukung- Tangtse- Chang La- Upshi(Night Stay)

    Day 2: Upshi- Chumthang- Mahe- Nyoma- Loma- Hanle(Night Stay)

    Day 3: Hanle- Kyon Tso(I&II)- Thit Zarbo La- Mahe- Korzok(Moriri Tso)

    Q1)Is it possible to cover Day 1 in a single day?

    Q2)Is it possible to cover Day 3 in a single day?

    Q3)Is this route(Hanle-Kyon Tso-Mahe) easily accessible if I have ILP? Because I’ve heard that the army guys can send back tourists from Chushul & Tsaga even if they have permit. So I’m little bit worried about reaching Hanle via Chumthang.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Soham, Day 1 is possible if you start early and Day 3 is also possible. Hanle to Tso Moriri should be doable but all depends if the marshes are wet or not around Kyon Tso and driver is ready to take you that route or not.

  17. Dear Mr Dhiraj,
    We r planing 2 visit
    leh- Ladakh (srinagar-kargil-leh-nubra-pangong-hanle-tsomariri-sarchu-manali)in first of june, pl help us to to plan it by 13 days we r 16 persons with a child of 4.5 yrs is the child is recommended for the tour

      • ARIJIT RAY on

        Mr Dheeraj,
        Pl let me know whether following planing is practically possible?
        1st day- Leh to Pangong[n/s]
        2nd day- Pangong to hanle[n/s]
        3rd day- Hanle to Tso marrirri
        4th day-Tsomarirri to Kelong

  18. Abhishek Solanki on

    Hey Dheeraj,
    I am all set to leave for leh on 5th September and will be covering zanskar and chumthang valley on a ktm 390. I have a few queries regarding the trip.
    1. How much extra fuel should I carry for zanskar and pangong to hanle to tso moriri stretch ? I was thinking 20 litres would be enough considering that the bike returns a mileage of around 25kmpl and I will be able to cover around 750 kms including the 10 litres of fuel in the tank.
    2. How cold would mid september to mid october be ? will it seriously hamper riding abilities ?
    3. How hard is it to get the permits for chusul and chumur. Also I have heard that theres no check post on the chumur route via salsal la, is that true ?
    4. I am planning to exit via spiti. Will kunzum be open around early october ? And what about visiting chandratal ?
    5. Also I really looked around for info on the trek to Phutkal monastery from padum but to no avail. Can you give me some inputs as to how hard is the trek and how long does it take if I leave my bike at the end of the road and trek from there.
    6. And lastly I wanted to get a dow sticker, so was wondering where can i get one from ? I will be carrying as amenities for the gyaan 500 and cure 500 initiatives.

    • Hey Abhishek,

      My replies below:

      1. Check this article for rough idea: http://devilonwheels.com/index.php/fuel-availability-in-leh-ladakh-ladakh-self-drive-tips/
      Also, take into account the 30-35% reduction in mileage when riding in hills with lack of oxygen.

      2. It will be quite cold post mid of September. Be prepared with proper woolen gear as it will go below sub zero especially at Lakes and Manali – Leh Highway during nights or over cast days. Check the thread: http://devilonwheels.com/india/himalayan-travel-guides/topic1877.html Tips for a cold weather Motorcycle Ride in Himalayas

      3. If you write Chumur, highly likely they will be rejected. Rest may be allowed. However, even after permits Army in general does not allow to pass through Chusul Checkpost. So, keep that in mind.

      4. Kunzum Pass will be open and Chandratal road too. However, not a good idea to spend night at Chandratal during last week of October.

      5. It takes 3-4 days to complete the trek of Phugtal, all depending upon how much you are acclimatized.

      6. Bhai DoW Stickers are available through DoW Store: http://www.devilonwheels.com/store/

      Thank you so much for coming forward and helping in executing DoW Causes.

      Regards
      Dheeraj

      • Abhishek Solanki on

        Thanks a lot for the inputs dheeraj bhai ! I recently came to know that there is no check post on the chumur route and I won’t need a permit until I go towards chumur, can you confirm whether this is correct or not ?

        • Abhishek, permit is always required for that route because it is a prohibited route. PLEASE DO NOT Travel without a permit there else if caught you will face some serious trouble. Please go with proper permissions of the route.

    • Hi Abhishek,

      I am also leaving from delhi on 7th morning on duke 390. will be taking Shimla, rekong peo, poo, kaza, batal, keylong, leh route. how ru planning to carry 20 lit of fuel? we r searching for two 5 lit jerry cans which shld accommodate in my Via Terra claw saddle bag. thanks

      • Abhishek Solanki on

        Hey, even I am doing spiti but on the return leg. And I also have the via terra claw saddle bag. I spend the whole day figuring out how to carry that much amount of fuel safely, but to not much avail. Came across this http://oliveplanet.in/http-www-oliveplanet-in-products-olive-military-surplus-olive-planet-steel-jerry-can-20-lts-pid-607219-aspx.html and thought I would tie it behind the bag above the tail lamp with bunjee cords but then even if I manage to get this to work I still need 10 litres more to get a range of 1000kms conidering a mileage of 25kmpl. So right now I am in sort of a fix and considering alternatives, can’t really afford to choke my fuel pump in the middle of nowhere . Dheeraj bhai any inputs and leads regarding this will be of great help !

        • seen tht link before. even i thought will be able to carry 20lit jerry can on back seat, thn i went to Dmart to buy cooking oil n picked up 15lit can as i was walking back to cashier counter, realized i cant put this 15lit can on duke safely n comfortably,so thrs no way to manage 20lit can on duke. the only place i can think of is on top of saddle bag but then riding, especially cornering will be very difficult. So now we gonna take two 5 lit cans hopefully should fit inside side pockets of saddle bag n take gamble on black fuel 🙂 . let me knw if u have any othr idea. also wanna do Phuktal monastery but not possible this time…plz share ur stories once ur back. ride safe

        • Abhishek, let’s keep the discussion on that thread. I have subscribed to your thread and will be replying fast now from tomorrow. I have poured my suggestions too on that thread. Regarding the gear, Preet who suggested on the thread is good source since I am not a biker. Just that it’s my son’s b’day so been busy now a days 🙂

  19. Hi Dheeraj,

    Excellent stuff man. we r goin to leh on bike in 2nd week of September, 2014. will be taking Shimla-rekong peo-kaza-leh route. after reading ur blog we have decided to visit Hanle :). my only worry is fuel as our bikes (KTM Duke 200/390) wont give more thn 20 kmpl. We will be carrying 10 ltr fuel with us frm Leh, not sure if tht be enough until we reach next petrol pump. Could you please suggest a route and is thr an accommodation available at Tso Moriri?

    Thanks a lot again for your efforts amazing stuff 🙂

  20. Ankur Choudhary on

    Hi Dheeraj, I am going to Ladakh from the 28th of August – 12 September and have got my return air tickets booked from Delhi-Leh-Delhi. I was wondering if you could help me plan my itinerary. This is my second time to Ladakh (the first time was from Delhi – Manali – Leh – Kargil – Srinagar – Delhi on my motorbike)and this time I want to restrict myself to Zanskar, Pangong and Hanle. What I am concerned about the most is the road condition and whether or not I will be able to squeeze in all the three places in the time I have, could you please suggest me an itinerary which I should follow. I will travel on a motorbike this time too.
    Your help will be greatly appreciated.
    Thanks
    Ankur

    • Hi Ankur,

      You can follow something like below:

      28: Rest Day in Leh and acclimatize
      29: Rest Day in Leh, get bike on rent and do some light sightseeing
      30: Leh – Sham Valley – Alchi
      1: Alchi – Kargil / Sankoo
      2: Kargil / Sankoo – Rangdum
      3: Rangdum – Padum
      4: Padum Local Sightseeing
      5: Padum – Kargil
      6: Kargil – Batalik – Dah Hanu – Leh (get permits for Batalik route from Kargil or Leh)
      7: Leh – Pangong Tso
      8: Pangong Tso – Leh
      9: Leh – Hanle
      10: Hanle – Tso Moriri
      11: Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Taglang La – Leh
      12: Fly out of Leh.

      • Dear Dheeraj,
        I’m going to be in Leh from 28th Sept to 12th Oct. Do you think I can do the above written route during this time? Would weather condition allow for this, roads all open?

        Thanks,
        Rishi

        • Rishi, the route remains open almost all round the year. The temperatures will be subzero, so be prepared for it. Also, you will first need Inner Line Permits for this route and second you need is luck that army allows you to pass through the route even after having permits.

  21. Ashwani Rajput on

    Hello Deeraj thanks for all information given above, I also talked to you before for Zanskar region but I wanted to ask you for the trip mentioned above, that is… If it is possible to make this trip from Leh -Pangong -Chushul-Loma-Hanle-Salsal La-Tso Moriri-To Kar-Leh in 2 nights 3days if not, which part should I delete or should I add one more day in it and subtract it from Zanskar Velly where I wanted to spend 6 nights. Would you please help me out in this. With Regards Ashwani Rajput (Haryana) Faridabad

    • Ashwani, better not attempt route from Chusul as it may land up you in trouble because army sends back people from Chusul post even with permit as the region is quite sensitive. So, if you want to do Hanle then it is better to attempt like below with permits of Hanle in place:

      Day 1 | Leh – Chumathang – Mahe – Loma – Hanle
      Day 2 | Hanle – Mahe – Kiagar Tso – Tso Moriri
      Day 3 | Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Taglang La – Leh

  22. We have completed our maiden Ladakh Trip, and are already planing for a second… Being first timers, we have covered Nubra(Diskit and Hunder Only, not Sumur and Panamik), Pangong, Tso-Moriri..
    There were 10 of us in total, and at the beginning everyone had great enthusiasm, but it faded away for 7 as time passed.. So, we couldn’t take direct routes. Believe it or not we did Pangong -> Tsomoriri in one day, but returning all the way through chang-la, karu and then travelling via upshi, chumathang, mahe, sumdo and finally reaching korzok, totaling upto a handsome ~300 Kms.
    For the second trip, what are your suggestions..?? I mean, which places to visit… We are planning to take a shot at Zanskar Valley, and what you add next..
    Frankly speaking, we’ll plan our trip according to your suggestion, and we can dedicate as much as 20 days in Ladakh.

      • Sometime in May-June next year. Excluding Delhi, we can have as much as 16-18 days. We can’t tell anything about mode of transport right now, but there’s a big chance that it’ll be like this time only. Innova/Xylo.

        • Pratyay, let’s wait till them. It is long time I will say and now you have basic understanding of Ladakh. I will will suggest you go through DoW Maps of Ladakh and try to document your interests including Zanskar Valley for sure. We can easily workout the most apt itinerary for you too. Also, you need to finalize on commute as well for better itinerary planning.

          To get an idea of the routes in Ladakh along with distances, you can refer: DoW – Maps of Ladakh | Nubra Valley & Changthang. Keep in mind that, the remote routes are isolated and completely off track with almost no roads. Better stick to traditional routes in case it is the first trip to Ladakh.

          To get an idea of the route map of Srinagar – Leh Highway, you can refer: DoW – Maps of Ladakh | Srinagar – Kargil – Leh

  23. Chetan Doshi on

    hello dheeraj

    We are reaching hanle on 18 june so what are the accomodation options in hanle and how to book observatory guest house there??

    • Chetan, there is Hanle observatory guest house which is the only decent accommodation available at Hanle. For booking you have to write to the Director, Indian Institute of Astrophysics at Bangalore. If he agrees for the booking and approve your request then you can stay there but no alterations in the date would be entertained and hence, you will have to reach the same day when it was booked.

      The homestay is at village Khaldo very very close to observatory. One is near the start of the village and has a landline phone. Ask people about homestay which has phone. The rooms are decent but the prices are hay-way as the owner is greedy types.

      There is one more guest house/ homestay at the end of this village just before pasture land starts which is run by a lady named Padmadeskit / Sonam her husband who works in lab (ask for this name). We stayed at this only twice and found it was very good to stay, second time as the guest house with shared bath and attached bath has been built by second visit. Do not expect too much out of a homestay. This one is more loyal to tourists as other one charge too much if he sees more tourists.

      Read the detailed review of the Padma Guest House in DoW Community: Padma (Sonam’s) Guest House/Homestay, Hanle | Review

  24. Hi Dheeraj Bhai,
    After reading your post on Hanle I am very much excited to visit this place.
    We are planning bike trip to Leh from Manali.Since non leh bikes are not allowed leh this year.The following is our tentative itenary.
    Day1:Manali rest
    Day2:Manali -Keylong via car
    Day3:Keylong-Leh via car
    Day4 : leh local
    Day5 leh nubra
    Day6 nubra leh
    We have 4 days more and on 12th day have to reach Manali.
    We want to cover pangong, tso moriri and hanle in 4 days…is it possible to cover them…??
    Day11 leh sarchu
    Day12 sarchu manali

    Thanks,
    Yash.

    • You can do something like below:

      Day 7: Leh – Pangong Tso
      Day 8: Pangong Tso – Karu – Chumathang
      Day 9: Chumathang – Mahe – Nyoma – Loma – Hanle
      Day 10: Hanle – Mahe – Sumdo – Kiagar Tso – Tso Moriri
      Day 11: Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Pang – Sarchu
      Day 12: Sarchu – Manali

  25. Pingback: Anxiety over Pangong Tso - Chusul - Hanle | Ladakh Mega Meet - DeViL on WheeLs

  26. Your posts are really convincing, and adorable..
    We are planning a kashmir-leh-ladakh tour in june-july. Excluding air-train times, we’ll have 18 days for the trip, and we’ve planned kashmir in about 5 days(not too great, just the main places), which means we’re getting about 13 days for the leh-ladakh part. We’ll be going through leh by the srinagar-leh highway, and while returning, will be taking the leh-manali route.
    Our checklist include:
    1) Kargil 2) Zanskar 3) Nubra, diskit, hunder 4)Pangong, marsimek la 5) Hanle 6) tso moriri, tso kar.
    We intend to take direct routes from nubra-pangong,pangong-hanle- tso moriri etc i.e. not returning to and halting in Leh.
    From nubra to pangong, we are planning to take the wari la or shoyk village route.
    Please plan a trip for us, if you advise not to visit some place, mention it, and if its possible to manage other places, mention those too…
    And the last thing, this is our first trip to leh-ladakh…

    • Hello Pratyay,

      Well, you have sufficient amount of time in hand so I will suggest to follow the traditional routes to all these above mentioned places because taking the direct routes will end you up in many iffs and buts.

      Regarding Nubra Valley to Pangong Tso route, in order to take Nubra Valley to Pangong Tso via Shyok village, you need not have any permits. However, with such a small distance it appears tempting to be done BUT just to analyze the difficulty I will strongly suggest that you read:Trip Report | Nubra – Shyok Village – Pangong Tso Route. The report is from June & in July/August, most likely the route will be washed away. So better confirm first, analyze the high risk involved and then only attempt it or better avoid it unless very much sure. Next possible way is to attempt Wari La route, which is also a bit desolated but doable enough.

      Regarding Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri route, the permits to Man – Merak – Chusul or remote Changthang routes are still not being given by DC office in Leh or perhaps I should say they are on and off, so keep your fingers crossed and hope for the best if they start issuing the permits by the time you visit or issue you on your lucky day. Also, even if the permits are given then as well there is no guarantee that you will be allowed post to cross Chusul or not because last year many such incidents happened and people with permits also had to return via same route. Otherwise, you have to take the traditional routes only.

      Are you still interested in direct routes?

      Regards,
      Dheeraj

      • Yeah, I’ll definitely abide by your advice, because we are first timers in leh-ladakh. But please do suggest an itinerary for us, via traditional routes, but covering the areas I mentioned.
        And I did a mistake, we’ll be going there in may-june, likely 75% of the tour time will be in june.
        Again I’m mentioning:
        1) Kargil 2) Zanskar 3) Nubra, diskit, hunder 4) Pangong tso, with mersimek la 5) Tso moriri and tso kar 6) Hanle
        Thanks again

        • And you can call me desperate, but I am requesting you to plan another one by the direct routes as well. Which one will be taken, will be left solely in the hands of the almighty. We will consider all of your advice, see whats good and whats bad in it, and plan a final itinerary, and leave it to you to consider the cons and pros of it.

        • Hi Pratyay,

          With 13 days in hand consider Zanskar out of the picture at the very least if you want to really enjoy the other places rather just running around over the road. Being first timers, better travel at slow pace. You can check a very balanced and most common itinerary for Leh – Ladakh followed by many travelers including me at the link here for 13-14 days via Traditional routes: Most Common Itinerary for Leh – Ladakh.

          Zanskar valley need at least 4 days from Kargil if not 5. So, make it happen in some other trip. Regarding the itinerary for direct routes you can do something like below:

          Day 1 | Srinagar – Kargil
          Day 2 | Kargil – Lamayuru – Leh
          Day 3 | Leh Rest Day and Permits
          Day 4 | Leh – Khardung La – Nubra Valley, Turtuk
          Day 5 | Turtuk – Hunder – Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Diskit/Hunder
          Day 6 | Diskit/Hunder – Wari La Pass – Chang La Pass – Pangong Tso
          Day 7 | Pangong Tso Rest Day (else you will miss the changing colors)
          Day 8 | Pangong Tso – Hanle via Chusul – Tsaga
          Day 9 | Hanle – Tso Moriri
          Day 10 | Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Sarchu
          Day 11 | Sarchu – Manali
          Day 12 | Manali – Delhi
          Day 13 | Buffer Day

          Regards
          dheeraj Sharma

        • We have just completed our maiden Leh-Ladakh trip. I’m not writing about how I felt, it will take pages, I’ll just say that Ladakh makes you hungry for more, so that you again go back…
          We have already planned our next trip, which will include Zanskar Valley, Hanle, Mersimek-La, etc..

        • Cool, If possible, try and share your Himalayan experience with us at DoW – Himalayan Travel Community as Photo Tale or Travel Tale Or your reviews of the hotels/guest houses where you stayed or dhabhas/restaurants you ate food on your trip… All this might help others planning the similar trip too 🙂 🙂

  27. Hello Dheeraj,

    We had been to Ladakh last month from 10th to 20th. After going through your blog, we planned our entire itenary. This included Hanle Village through the Pangong to tso Moriri route. We were able to get permits for this route through Tsaga Village. Our trip was excellent because of you. Every detail is covered in your blog and is really a boon for first time travelers. You are doing a great job.

    Hats off to you!!
    Gayatri

    • Wow, that is great Gayatri!! Glad you made it through the permits because majority of people are not getting them at all… If possible, try and share your Himalayan experience with us at DoW – Himalayan Travel Community as Photo Tale or Travel Tale Or your reviews of the property where you stayed or dhabhas/restaurants you ate food on your trip…

      Regards
      Dheeraj Sharma

  28. Anirban Sengupta on

    Hi Dheeraj

    Plz find our plan & let us know whether it would be ok or not…
    31st aug: Kol-Del via train
    1st sep: Del-manali via volvo
    2nd sep: manali stay
    3rd sep: manali-sarchu, stay at sarchu
    4th sep: sarchu-leh
    5th sep: stay in leh/rest/leh local sight seeing
    6th sep: leh-pangong, bangong co, stay at pangong
    7th sep: pangong-Tso moriri, stay at Tsomoriri
    8th sep: Tso moriri-Leh
    9th sep: stay in leh/reserve day/hemis sight seeing/leh local sight seeing
    10th sep: leh-nubra valley
    11th sep: nubra valley-leh
    12th sep: leh-del via flight in mrng
    12th sep: del-kol
    13th sep: return at Kolkata

    now all our tickets have been confirmed already & we also eant to explore Hanle. could you give suggestion on this..

    Thanks
    Anirban

    • Hi Anirban,

      Staying at Sarchu is not recommended due to AMS while going from Manali to Leh. So, better stay at Jispa. Also, it is always better to do Nubra Valley first and then the lakes because of AMS issues again. Here is the modified version I will suggest:

      3rd sep: manali-jispa
      4th sep: jispa – leh
      5th sep: stay in leh/rest/leh local sight seeing
      6th sep: leh – nubra
      7th sep: nubra – leh
      8th sep: Leh – Pangong Tso – Leh
      9th sep: Leh – Hanle
      10th sep: Hanle – Tso Moriri
      11th sep: Tso Moriri – Leh

      Regards
      Dheeraj

  29. Tanvi Mehta on

    Hello Dheeraj,
    We are planning a road trip to Leh from Mumbai from 22nd June onwards. Here’s what we have in mind, so far:
    Mumbai – Ahmedabad – Ajmer – Karnal – Pathankot – Pahalgam (2 days) – Srinagar (4 days) – Gulmarg (1 day) – Sonamarg (1 day) – Kargil (1 day) – Alchi (1 day) – Leh (5 days) – Hunder (1 day) – Turtuk (1 day) – Panamik (2 days) – Leh (2 days) – Pangong Tso (2 days)
    After this, we are sort of confused. We would like to go to Tsomoriri, Tsokar and Hanle; after which we would like to exit via Manali, or if the roads are bad, via Srinagar (via Dha-Hanu). What route should we follow to go to these places? Also, do suggest if the number of days allocated for each place are fine; and are the halts okay? We are flexible and are willing to alter them. Eagerly waiting..

    • Tanvi Mehta on

      Hello Dheeraj,

      I have jotted down the routes here. Please let me know, as to which one of the options should I go for (pts. 2, 4, 5 6), in terms of road conditions, fuel, stay, distance and scenic beauty.

      1. SRINAGAR – KARGIL
      Srinagar – (Sonamarg / Zoji La / Drass) – Kargil

      2. KARGIL – LEH
      A. Kargil – (Namika La / Fotu La / Lamayuru / Khalste / Nimoo) – Leh
      B. Kargil – (Hamboting La / Dha / Hanu / Khalste / Nimoo) – Leh

      3. LEH – NUBRA VALLEY – LEH
      Leh – (Khardung La / Khalsar / Diskit / Hunder) – Turtuk
      Turtuk – (Hunder / Diskit / Sumur) – Panamik
      Panamik – (Sumur / Khalsar / Khardung La) – Leh

      4A. LEH – PANGONG TSO
      Leh – (Karu / Sarkti / Chang La / Durbuk / Tangste / Lukung / Spangmik / Man) – Merak
      (Extra Drive: Lukung – (Phobran) – Marisimik La)

      OR

      4B. NUBRA VALLEY – PANGONG TSO
      A. Panamik – (Sumur / Khalsar / Agham / Shyok / Durbuk / Tangste / Lukung / Spangmik / Man) – Merak
      B. Panamik – (Sumur / Khalsar / Agham / Wari La / Sarkti / Chang La / Durbuk / Tangste / Lukung / Spangmik / Man) – Merak
      (Extra Drive: Lukung – (Phobran) – Marisimik La)

      5A. LEH – HANLE
      A. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Chumathang / Mahe / Nyoma / Loma) – Hanle
      B. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Chumathang / Mahe / Nyoma / Nidar / Thit Zarbo La / Kyun Tso) – Hanle

      OR

      5B. PANGONG TSO – HANLE
      A. Merak – (Chushul / Tsaga La / Loma) – Hanle
      B. Merak – (Chushul / Satatho La / Kakasang La / Hor La / Mahe / Nyoma / Loma) – Hanle
      C. Merak – (Chushul / Satatho La / Kakasang La / Hor La / Mahe / Nyoma / Nidar / Thit Zarbo La / Kyun Tso) – Hanle

      6A. LEH – TSO MORIRI
      A. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Chumathang / Mahe / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok
      B. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Tanglang La / Debring / Tso Kar / Polokong La / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok

      OR

      6B. HANLE – TSO MORIRI
      A. Hanle – (Loma / Nyoma / Mahe / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok
      B. Hanle – (Kyun Tso / Thit Zarbo / Nidar / Nyoma / Mahe / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok

      7. TSO MORIRI – SARCHU
      Korzok – (Tso Kiagar / Sumdo / Polokong La / Tso Kar / Debring / Pang / Lachung La / Nakee La) – Sarchu

      8. SARCHU – MANALI
      Sarchu – (Baralacha La / Darcha / Jispa / Keylong / Tandi / Gramphoo / Rohtang Jot) – Manali

      Eagerly waiting..

      • Aah, very long enough 😉 … Find my inputs below:

        1. SRINAGAR – KARGIL
        Srinagar – (Sonamarg / Zoji La / Drass) – Kargil: Have to do it.

        2. KARGIL – LEH
        A. Kargil – (Namika La / Fotu La / Lamayuru / Khalste / Nimoo) – Leh: Good enough and shall be done if it is first time.
        B. Kargil – (Hamboting La / Dha / Hanu / Khalste / Nimoo) – Leh: Again good enough but I feel can be skipped unless you want to come back to Srinagar from Leh by road OR if this is your second time and you have seen Lamayuru part.

        3. LEH – NUBRA VALLEY – LEH
        Leh – (Khardung La / Khalsar / Diskit / Hunder) – Turtuk
        Turtuk – (Hunder / Diskit / Sumur) – Panamik
        Panamik – (Sumur / Khalsar / Khardung La) – Leh
        Good way of doing it. First reach Turtuk and then doing on the way locations upto Panamik and finally coming back from there.

        4A. LEH – PANGONG TSO
        Leh – (Karu / Sarkti / Chang La / Durbuk / Tangste / Lukung / Spangmik / Man) – Merak
        (Extra Drive: Lukung – (Phobran) – Marisimik La)
        Good, doable and suggested again for the first timer

        OR

        4B. NUBRA VALLEY – PANGONG TSO
        A. Panamik – (Sumur / Khalsar / Agham / Shyok / Durbuk / Tangste / Lukung / Spangmik / Man) – Merak: NOT SUGGESTED at all. Do read to make up your mind: Trip Report | Nubra – Shyok Village – Pangong Tso Route
        B. Panamik – (Sumur / Khalsar / Agham / Wari La / Sarkti / Chang La / Durbuk / Tangste / Lukung / Spangmik / Man) – Merak
        (Extra Drive: Lukung – (Phobran) – Marisimik La): Can be taken if you have no choice and are on short number of days. Desolation is what you will feel there. Plus extra fuel too.

        5A. LEH – HANLE
        A. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Chumathang / Mahe / Nyoma / Loma) – Hanle: Better follow this route only.
        B. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Chumathang / Mahe / Nyoma / Nidar / Thit Zarbo La / Kyun Tso) – Hanle: This will be very very tough getting through. Need 4×4 and no idea how bad or good roads could be. But, desolation is sure and no help too.

        OR

        5B. PANGONG TSO – HANLE
        A. Merak – (Chushul / Tsaga La / Loma) – Hanle
        B. Merak – (Chushul / Satatho La / Kakasang La / Hor La / Mahe / Nyoma / Loma) – Hanle
        C. Merak – (Chushul / Satatho La / Kakasang La / Hor La / Mahe / Nyoma / Nidar / Thit Zarbo La / Kyun Tso) – Hanle
        Permit will not be given on any of the above route, even if you get through the permits then army will not let you through. Even if they will, they will not allow cameras and other electronic. Slimest of chance.

        6A. LEH – TSO MORIRI
        A. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Chumathang / Mahe / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok: Come from Hanle side via Salsal La – Charchaghan La route.
        B. Leh – (Karu / Upshi / Tanglang La / Debring / Tso Kar / Polokong La / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok: will be needed while exiting from Tso Kar in other direction.

        OR

        6B. HANLE – TSO MORIRI
        A. Hanle – (Loma / Nyoma / Mahe / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok: Good enough but better first try to come from Hanle side via Salsal La – Charchaghan La route.
        B. Hanle – (Kyun Tso / Thit Zarbo / Nidar / Nyoma / Mahe / Sumdo / Tso Kiagar) – Korzok: This will be very very tough getting through. Need 4×4 and no idea how bad or good roads could be. But, desolation is sure and no help too.

        7. TSO MORIRI – SARCHU
        Korzok – (Tso Kiagar / Sumdo / Polokong La / Tso Kar / Debring / Pang / Lachung La / Nakee La) – Sarchu: Have to do it.

        8. SARCHU – MANALI
        Sarchu – (Baralacha La / Darcha / Jispa / Keylong / Tandi / Gramphoo / Rohtang Jot) – Manali: Have to do it.

    • Hi Tanvi,

      Well, I do not see anything at Panamik for 2 days may be use a day somewhere else, Hanle/Turtuk/Hunder may be!! Coming back to main confusion, from Pangong Tso you shall come back to Leh first. Then head to Hanle, spend couple of nights. Then start for Tso Moriri via Salsal La route, may be spend couple of nights at Tso Moriri too or split a night at Tso Kar next day. Then, exit towards Manali – Leh Highway from Tso Kar.

      Regards
      Dheeraj

  30. Hi Dheeraj.. I’m back from ladakh.. Regarding Hanle, have 2 important updates. Cameras have been banned in Hanle area beyond Loma check post due to wrong media coverage of border activities. So please ensure that all DOW readers write on their permit form that they are going to Hanle only for tourism purposes and that their cameras should be allowed.
    Secondly we couldn’t do Kyun Tsobecause the route was snowed both via Thit Zarbo La and Hanle. We stayed at Sonam’s guest house and even he admitted Hanle hasn’t seen this much snow in 30 years. So this year’s been exceptionally cold.
    Nonetheless its a beautiful place to be .. Hope all DOW readers enjoy it 🙂

    • Hi Aashish,

      Glad to know you did Hanle. Can you let me know where you stayed and how easy or difficult is to just land in Hanle and hope to find an accommodation? Also what route did you take to Hanle? Can you update on the road conditions? We plan to be there towards end of June.

      • Goldie, accommodation as stated in the article completely depends upon these homestays. Not sure, if this Sonam Homestay is same referred as the Homestay with a phone. Ashish can better throw some light on it and rest of the things. Road conditions from Leh to Hanle via Mahe bridge are generally fine.

    • Thank you so much brother for this update. I will surely update the article for both Hanle as well as Inner Liner Permits to update this information. No Worries, no you have another reason to visit the place again 😉 … Please share any contact of this Sonam Guets House and where it is located. Regarding snow part, everyone told me same in Spiti Valley too 😀

    • Sushil K Pingua on

      Hi Aashish

      I did see your name on Sonam’s guest-log … i would like to clarify that although the ITBP check-post at Loma insists that cameras are not allowed after Loma, it is not at all ITBP’s right to do so (b’coz the permit has been issued by the DC Office)… i was in Hanle from 12thMay’13 to 30thMay’13, the ITBP did too try to stop me from carrying my camera into Hanle… all I did was stood my stand and requested the ITBP check-post to confirm the same from DC Office, Leh either through their gazetted officers or they themselves, which they were afraid to(?)… after half-an-hour of hassling among themselves they did let me ride into Hanle with my camera hanging from my neck 🙂

      I did confirm the same at DC Office, Leh after being back from Hanle and got the response in favour of the Tourists(us)… Loma check-post is a bunch of literate yet socially-uneduated govt employees (soldiers?)…

      I did enjoy my share of camping with the Changpa community in their “Rebos” and off-road riding towards ‘Kalathar-thar’…

      I would recommend Hanle for all wild-adventure seekers.

      Thank you 🙂

      • Sushil ji, thanks for conotinuos support and updates from your trip. I am feeling really out of my world and seriously now feeling of how can I manage such long time in the placees I love most!! I have to live it from here only but it is just a very small chunk of real experience what is felt from here reading and wirting about Himalayas!! Thanks for these updates and I am sure it will be helpful to many others. Camping at Changpa is surely something only few people have the privilege and time to experience!! Hats off to you and your spirit…

        I will sincerely request you to JOIN DoW’s recently launched DoW – Himalayan Travel Community and share your vast Himalayan knowledge and experiences with other like minded travellers and those seeking help in traveling to Himalayas too 🙂 … You can read the focus and vision of the community and if you feel/match the similar vibes, we will to happy to have you on board

        Regards
        Dheeraj Sharma

        • Sushil K Pingua on

          Hi Dheeraj 🙂
          I am heart-felt happy to be in your Himalayan Community, thank you very much for the honour.
          Since Hanle does not have any telecomunication network, the best way to contact Mr.Sonam Dorjee the homestay owner is to either directly visit the IAO Observatory at Hanle or call IAO Hanle at their Direct-Satellite phone (phone number can be obtained at IAO Hanle`s official website)… Sonam Dorjee is a non-technical employee at the IAO, Hanle.
          There is another homestay at Hanle close to its health centre but the cleanliness and facilities offered are below par.
          Sonam is a wonderful and spirited man, his charges are Rent Rs.250/day + Rs.150/day for 3meals = Rs.400 in total per day.

          Thank you.

        • Sushil brother, it is ours as it is community which belongs to every individual who loves to Travel to Himalayas 🙂 .. Thanks for this wonderful info. and insights to accommodation at Hanle which are barely none.

  31. beauti………full place i always like ladakh area.we r going in june.thanks for updating such information.please update when manali to kaaza way opens.

    • Sunil, it is difficult that Manali – Kaza road will open before late June types. I just came back from Spiti Valley on Sunday and went all the way till roads are being cleared. The GREF is inexperienced with these roads being just there second season so it is taking time to clear things. Also, they havn’t reached Kunzum Pass yet and will take another 7-8 days to clear it. So, keep late June as probable time of opening of Manali – Kaza road.

      Regards
      Dheeraj Sharma

      PS: Sorry for the delayed response, I was traveling to Spiti Valley for past 10 days

  32. DIVYESH PARIKH on

    Hi Dheeraj,
    Thanks for such a marvellous information about Hanle. I am just tempted to go to Hanle along with my 12 family members during July,2013. Please let me know whether private taxi available for 12-13 people and how much it cost for two day journey. Thanks again for the updates.

    • Divyesh, with so many people the only problem I see is getting the accommodation. Like I wrote, only few home stays are available, so might get difficult to get some space. For the leh – ladakh taxi union rate list 2013-14 including the contacts of some reliable taxi drivers within Leh – Ladakh, check the link here. You can get about 10-15% of discount by directly getting in touch with drivers and of course, talking in person rather on phone always help in bargaining more.

  33. Superb write up Dheeraj.. Kudos to you for this.. I would make just one comment on this.. I’m not really sure if you need chumur permits for doing SalsalLa route from Hanle to Tso Moriri because the cut to the lake goes at the fork for chumur. I will get to know more in a couple of days and shall keep you updated! Also you can cover the twin Kyun Tso lakes if you take that route, they are on the right of salsalLa. A lot of people have reported that Sonam at the observatory can take you for a round trip for 2000 bucks.Thank for the Guide, will help a lot.

    • Thanks for the updates Aashish, yeah, I do not think too that you need permits for Chumur for following that route (though not sure and will keep an eye on your update) but the intent was why to miss Chumur when going so close to it 😉 … It has a mummy too housed in the monastery. Yeah, there are Kuon Tso 1 and Kyon Tso 2 near the ascend of Salsal La and also there is one more lake by the name Lam Tso which is near the cut of Chumur. If you hitting the road there in your on going trip, do check if you can see that too because it might also not require any permits if there is no checkpost at Salsal La. Lam Tso lies well before of Chumur!!

      And many thanks for that info. of Sonam, would be lovely if something like that is arranged there to see these twin lakes 🙂 … Waiting for your updates 😀

      • Sonam has a Tata 207 which with enough GC still kisses the ground, normal SUVs would struggle too for Kyun Tsos.. Permits aren’t required for sure.. Chumur will be needed though for Lam Tso..
        I intend to take that route unless Rigzin does allows.. Will keep you updated..

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