How to plan a journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway


The 434 KM long Srinagar – Leh Highway is almost like a lifeline in the form of road connectivity between Leh – Ladakh and rest of India via Kashmir Valley. Srinagar – Leh Highway also known as National Highway – 1D (NH – 1D) is the most reliable and one of the only two ways to reach Leh – Ladakh by road, the other one being Manali – Leh Highway (Check: Travel Guide for Manali – Leh Highway here). Generally, travelers or adventure lovers from all over world loves or dreams to undertake this road trip of their life time by covering both routes connecting Leh – Ladakh to rest of India i.e. a lifetime experience road trip traversing Srinagar – Leh – Manali Highways. Apart from being famous for its enchanting views, this highway holds a strategic importance for India and being close to LOC, you see the heavy army presence on it when you travel through Srinagar – Leh Highway.

The highway runs along side the Indus River and through some extremely harsh and barren terrain including the three high mountain passes named Zozi La (3528 Mtrs), Namki La (3815 Mtrs) and Fotu La (4108 Mtrs). In any case, Srinagar – Leh highway offers some breathtaking landscapes ornamented by various historical and cultural constructions which are just like a dream treat for any traveler driving/riding through Srinagar – Leh Highway.

Generally, people traveling or flying directly to Leh – Ladakh suffers from acute mountain sickness as Leh (3500 Mtrs) due to sudden disturbance of altitude with which the body is adapted. However, Srinagar – Leh highway provides a gradual ascent to travelers thus helps them fight any chances of acute mountain sickness (AMS) caused due to high altitudes and let them enjoy the beautiful vistas in relaxed manner.

Season to Travel on Srinagar – Leh Highway

The 434 KM long Srinagar Highway generally remains closed for about 6 months in an year starting from November to May due to heavy snowfall on the mountain passes mainly Zozi La pass. Zozi La pass starts receiving snowfall in the month of November and then any day of November (generally 15th November officially) the highway ceases to close officially as it becomes extremely difficult for BRO to clear the snow. Then, again as the winter months resides, the BRO guys begins the snow clearance process in spring season that is in March and repair the damaged roads, bridges and other parts of the highway. Finally, after completing this rigorous job of snow clearance and fixing the roads, bridges etc BRO announces the opening of Srinagar – Leh Highway generally around mid – May or by June first week.

Hence, the best season to travel Srinagar – Leh Highway is between June to October. In May, if the highway gets open then generally the roads are in really bad shape and only improves as the season progress with constant repair work conducted by BRO. By end of June as the road condition stabilizes the monsoon comes to the party in July and creates havoc in lower hills connecting Srinagar to Jammu and further to other parts of India. The landslides are almost inevitable in monsoon season which causes road blockages ever now and then. The Amarnath Yatra being in full flow in July – August, do expect heavy traffic and rush from Jammu – Srinagar – Kargil parts of highway. Even the dominance of armed forces also increase in July – August owing to the security of pilgrims of Amarnath Yatra.

It is almost a nightmare to drive through Zozi La Pass in July – August especially when its raining or has rained previous days but at any day better than Rohtang Pass on Manali – Leh Highway which becomes more than hell during monsoon season. One should always avoid Srinagar – Leh Highway during days alongside Independence Day in India i.e. 15th August which is when the bandhs and strikes gets more active. As the end of August approach, the Amarnath Yatra is over and monsoon starts to reside from Northern India, the conditions improve much more to travel on Srinagar – Leh Highway and in September it could be called as best time to travel but you will not find any snow of course. Even in August and late July snow will be hard to touch except few patches on Zozi La pass.

Since, the other side of Zozila Pass mainly Kargil onwards comes under rain shadow area where only the dry winds of monsoon reach. So, in July – August you need to tackle the monsoon rains and their havoc in lower hills only including Jammu, Srinagar, Zozi La pass i.e. till you reach Kargil where there is very little rain during these months.

Throughout the season, you need to let pass large convoys of army trucks as army also stock up required materials in Leh – Ladakh through Srinagar – Leh road majorly. This may cause delay of few hours every now and then in your entire journey on Srinagar – Leh highway.

Modes of Travel on Srinagar – Leh Highway

Private Vehicles i.e. Cars and Bikes | Self Drive or Ride to Ladakh

Most people prefer to self drive or self ride to Ladakh by their own car or own bike and some also prefer to self drive or self ride to Ladakh by hiring a bike or car. In any case, hired car/bike or personal car/bike, idea is to live the passion of driving or riding through one of the toughest and adventurous terrains accessible in India. You can take your own or rented, car or bike to Ladakh but one must be careful while driving or riding through slushy roads, snow and water crossing or nallas. Also, it is always handy to learn little maintenance tasks of your vehicle prior to the start of this comparatively less arduous journey than Manali – Leh Highway.

For cars, although an SUV/MUV is good to have and a 4WD SUV will definitely help but I have seen hatchbacks (including Altos and Nano) and sedans doing good enough job on Srinagar – Leh Highway than on Manali – Leh Highway. If you want to try your sedan or hatch back drive to Ladakh then Srinagar – Leh Highway is better bet when compared to taking a sedan or hatch from Manali – Leh Highway. However like on Manali – Leh Highway, with sedans / hatchbacks one must drive with extra care and caution even at Srinagar – Leh Highway and especially around Zozila pass (ascend and descend both).

You get less number of challenges on Srinagar – Leh Highway as compared to Manali – Leh Highway with only major hurdle being Zozila Pass. However even then, whenever you are in doubt, always step out of your car, walk down the path, inspect with your foot and plan the path of exit before crossing a dangerous landslide or water crossing on your vehicle. You can also park aside and see how others are crossing the risky section to plan your route of escape. In deep water crossings try to maintain the momentum without any half clutch measures and complete the entire stretch in one go only. Similarly, in slush stretches do not force the issue rather keep the smooth momentum with required speed to pass you through, without half clutch measures. Do keep an eye on the direction of the vehicle too. If you get stuck in slush then try to back and forth your vehicles to get out of the stuck position. It is always handy to ask your fellow co-travelers to get out of the car and push the vehicle from behind incase the car is struggling to pass through the slush or water crossing stretch.

Basic toolkit, screw driver set, small hammer, puncture repair kit, iron rod, two or three “2 ltr” empty bottles of pepsi / coke / limca etc to carry extra petrol or diesel (jerry cans will leak, cold drink bottles do not leak), funnel, towing rope, spare tube (must for bikes), elfy or fevi quick (2-3 sachets), jump start cables/wires, M-seal to prevent leakage etc. were among the few things which I carried along on my trip to Ladakh. Also, do not forget to get your vehicle (car/bike) serviced about 2-3 weeks before the start of the Ladakh journey. This will ensure that you have proper time in advance to test your serviced vehicle and get fixed any hitches that may have been introduced in that service

Hiring a Private Taxi | Taxi Number or Private Number

All taxis (except Ladakh registration number) having taxi number or tourist permits number plates are only allowed for a drop in Leh – Ladakh. As per the taxi union rules only taxis with Ladakh number are only allowed to roam in the Ladakh region for sightseeing purposes. If you want to travel within Leh – Ladakh in your private taxi hired from a place other than Ladakh then in that case you need to hire a taxi with private number plate only. However, in the latter case be ready for some queries by the local taxi drivers in Ladakh or police constables on your route. You need to ensure everyone interrogating with you that the vehicles is not hired.

If you can get hold of some taxi driver in Ladakh then hire that taxi only else go to Kargil first and change taxi from there. From Kargil, the Ladakh taxi driver can pick you and you will have the advantage to cover the sightseeing places en-route Leh on Srinagar – Leh Highway like Alchi, Basgo, Likir etc before you reach Leh. If that is not your plan then hire a direct taxi from Srinagar to Leh but with taxi hired with Srinagar number plate you will not be able to do sightseeing en-route especially Sham Valley, as far as I know.

To hire a taxi, go directly to Srinagar taxi stand and bargain hard with the local drivers only, for a drop to Leh. Do not involve any tour operator or hotel staff at any stage. The local taxi drivers will charge about Rs 1200-1500 extra for a planned night halt on the way to Leh. The charges are close to Rs 9000 to Rs 12000 for a drop to Leh from Srinagar with one night halt, depending on your bargaining power, tourist rush and the time of the year you are visiting.

Srinagar – Leh Bus Service, JK SRTC and Others | Economical mode of travel

JK SRTC ply buses on Srinagar – Leh Highway which are available at Srinagar Bus Stand near Lal Chowk and near Polo Ground in Leh. I guess JK SRTC have both standard as well as semi-deluxe buses which run Srinagar – Leh Highway with cost of about Rs 500 – Rs 600 for Standard bus and Rs 600 – Rs 700 for semi-deluxe types. There are also few private bus operators running semi-deluxe buses between Srinagar – Leh who charge about Rs 800 – Rs 900 per seat.

These buses generally stop at Kargil for the night and Sonamarg for tea and snacks. The JK SRTC buses may not be as comfortable though but comfort comes with the price. The buses leaves Srinagar around 5 AM and Leh around 6 AM, I guess.

Shared Taxi | A Cannon ball run

You can also buy yourself a seat in a shared taxi which runs every mid-night from Srinagar and reaches Leh on next evening without any night halt. In the same way, shared taxis are run from Leh to Srinagar as well.

You need to pay about Rs 1200 to Rs 1500 per person for a drop to Leh from Srinagar or a drop to Srinagar from Leh. Of course, since it is shared with 7-8 other people plus the driver and completes the back braking cannon ball run of Srinagar – Leh in 16-18 hours, you can imagine the level of comfort yourself. This one is the second cheapest mode of travel on Srinagar – Leh Highway but mind you, it could be the toughest on the body too :)

Also, not staying at Kargil will mean less acclimatization which may make you feel a bit sick in the first few days when you reach Leh.

Other travel modes

You can also get in touch with some travel agent or taxi union in Srinagar who also runs their private buses or Tempo Travelers on Srinagar – Leh Highway.

Planning Night Stay or Accommodation on Srinagar – Leh Highway

Based on my experience, you can opt to plan a journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway in one of the following ways –

Two Day Journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway

The options of stay or accommodation are very limited on Manali – Leh Highway due to the limited civilization but on the Srinagar – Leh Highway you get the respite as there are plenty of civilized places enroute and you get to find accommodation either one or the other place. You will find accommodation option ever 70-80 odd KMs on an average. But still, a two day journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway is the most common among all travelers as you tend to see the beauty in relaxing manner as well as you help your body to accilimatize to the altitude of Leh. Private Taxis and buses run by JK SRTC also cover the Srinagar – Leh Highway in two days with night halt at Kargil. Mostly, people break up the journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway in the following ways over a span of two days –

Srinagar – Kargil / Drass (Day 1) and Kargil / Drass – Leh (Day 2)

This option is mostly preferred by people as it evenly distributes the travel time of the entire journey in two days. However, on the second day, you need to leave early in the morning if you are interested to stop at every other point to take pictures and still reach Leh in time :).

Personally, out of Kargil or Drass you shall prefer to stay at Kargil due to varied options of accommodation available at Kargil. But, many a times finding vegetarian food becomes difficult in Kargil in the late evening and hence, you can opt to stay at Drass which does offer a few accommodation options. The distance between Drass – Kargil is about 60 KMs only which means about 2 hours of more travel time on next day.

If you are a vegetarian then most likely, what you can do is that if you are reaching Drass by about evening then its good to take your dinner there and reach Kargil by the late evening or early night time. May be a tea or coffee with some biscuits will make you feel good for rest of the night. It will surely help rather than sleeping without vegetarian food due its unavailability in Kargil :)

One Day Journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway
Srinagar – Leh (Day 1)

This option of completing the journey of Srinagar – Leh in single day is mostly common among local people or people who are in high rush and is least recommended if you want to enjoy your travel. Shared taxis are the preferred way to avail this option. Although, it could be the cheapest or time saving for you but this back braking, cannon ball run of 15-16 Hrs with least stoppages does put a heavy toll on the body as well as the mind of an average traveler. This long journey is extremely tiring and by traversing through the varied amount of altitudes in a single day, you are definitely running a risk of acute mountain sickness (AMS) or some severe headaches and for initial days spent in Leh. Of course, this is true incase you have not stayed overnight in Gulmarg or Pahalgam or Sonamarg on previous nights of your tour. Doing in a single day, may certainly kill the joy of the journey.

Three Day Journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway
Srinagar –  Kargil/Drass (Day 1) and  Kargil/Drass  – Lamayuru/Alchi (Day 2) and Lamayuru/Alchi – Leh (Day 3)

Well, by extending the journey of Srinagar – Leh Highway in three days, you give yourself a chance to explore the sightseeing places en-route thoroughly. There are many tourist destinations in Ladakh region which are situated on Srinagar – Leh Highway and requires time if you really wish to explore them. Hence, by extending the journey with one day you give your self ample of time to explore these tourist places before you reach Leh. For more details on sightseeing refer section: Sightseeing on Srinagar – Leh Highway, below in the article.

Very few people follow this option due to lack of time and to save money. If these two things have no place for consideration at your grounds then I will say just go with it and you will make your journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway much more than a memorable experience :). I guess the comparison of night halts (Drass/Kargil) is already done in first option, so opt as per your taste.

This option will mostly be available, if you are traveling by your own vehicle. To be very frank, this option is not even available if you are hiring a private Srinagar registered taxi as well because Srinagar registered taxi are not allowed for local sightseeing in Ladakh region especially Sham Valley where all these tourist places are present. In such a case you need to book a taxi to Kargil first from Srinagar and then hire yourself a taxi from Kargil to Leh or you need to hire a Ladakh registered number taxi. Confirm in advance from the driver if he will do sightseeing for Sham Valley before booking it. Then, in next two days after covering all tourist destinations including Mulbekh, Lamayuru, Redzong, Alchi, Likir, Sham Valley etc on the route you can reach Leh.

Staying one night at Alchi, which is lower in altitude than Leh, also make sure that your body is much more acclimatized to the altitude of Leh and you enjoy a lot better conditions once you reach Leh after a stay at Kargil and Alchi on previous nights.

Alternate Route to Leh from Kargil via Batalik and Dah

There exist an alternate route to reach Leh once you reach Kargil which is a bit more scenic than the usual route. The usual route goes like Kargil – Mulbekh – Lamayuru – Leh and the alternate, less used route goes like Kargil – Batalik – Dah – Skurbuchan – Leh.

Please make a note that the route via Batalik requires you to get the Inner Line Permits from either DC Office Kargil or DC Office Leh. So, I will advise that you go to Leh from Kargil via Lamayuru following the usual route and then you can come back to Kargil via Batalik after getting the permits from Leh DC office at the time you apply permits for Ladakh sightseeing places like Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso etc. If you are returning via Manali – Leh Highway then you need to take permits from Kargil DC Office to go via Batalik route and thereby miss the usual route to Leh which goes via Lamayuru.

Sightseeing on Srinagar – Leh Highway

Well, while traversing this beautiful road of Srinagar – Leh Highway you also give yourself a chance to visit the following places either on the route or with little diversions from the route –

Maitrey at Mulbek, Lamayuru Monastery, Lunar Landscape, Redzong / Rizong Monastery,  Alchi Monastery, Likir Monastery, Basgo Palace, Confluence at Nimmu, Magnetic Hills, Pathar Sahib Gurudwara, Phyang Monastery, Spituk Monastery.

You need to give yourself time to explore these places especially Lamayuru, Alchi and Likir monasteries. Hence, if you plan to cover these sightseeing places either while going towards Leh from Srinagar or towards Srinagar from Leh, then give yourself at least 3 days to cover the entire Srinagar – Leh route.

List of Accommodation or Stay Options on Srinagar – Leh Highway

Srinagar – Leh Highway is much better than Manali – Leh Highway in terms of accommodation options it offers and one can find decent place to stay within 125 odd KMs at max. At some places like Mulbekh, Sonamarg, Drass etc the accommodation options could be very limited and basic guest house / home stay types while places like Kargil, Lamayuru does offer varied amount of accommodation options. So, it always better to break the journey at Kargil or Lamayuru but of course there are not much worries for places of stay on Srinagar – Leh Highway than on Manali – Leh Highway. You can also take diversion to the towns of Alchi / Likir for a stay there as well. Of course you will find basic home stay types of accommodation at both Alchi / Likir but it would be a worthwhile experience in any case. Here is the break up of accommodation options available on Srinagar – Leh Highway with distances –

  • Srinagar – Sonamarg (80 KMs) | Decent number of accommodation options available at Sonamarg
  • Sonamarg – Drass (65 KMs) | Decent number of accommodation options available at Drass
  • Drass – Kargil (55 KMs) | Many accommodation options available at Kargil
  • Kargil – Mulbekh (40 KMs) | Few basic / home stay accommodation options available at Mulbekh
  • Mulbekh – Lamayuru (70 KMs) | Decent number of accommodation options available at Lamayuru
  • Lamayuru – Alchi / Likir (55 – 65 KMs / 65 – 75 KMs) | Few basic / home stay accommodation options available at Alchi / Likir
  • Lamayuru – Leh (125 KMs) | Many accommodation options available at Leh
  • Alchi / Likir – Leh ( 65 KM / 55 KMs) | Many accommodation options available at Leh

Please keep in mind that Alchi and Likir are not exactly on Srinagar – Leh Highway and you need to take diversions near Sasapol, I guess, for either of them. The distance between Alchi – Likir is about 18 – 20 KMs only.

Acclimatization and its importance on Srinagar – Leh Highway

Unlike Manali – Leh Highway, the journey on Srinagar – Leh Highway goes through gradual increase in altitude thereby helping our body to get acclimatized properly for the altitude of Leh. That is why going through Srinagar – Leh Highway is always preferred for road trip to Ladakh than going via Manali – Leh Highway. By going to Leh – Ladakh from Srinagar – Leh Highway, one gives himself a chance to properly acclimatize to the high altitudes there by decreasing the chances of being hit by AMS. In the return leg, you can go via Leh – Manali Highway so that your body is properly acclimatized by the time you under take the varied high altitudes on that route. This helps you enjoy the Manali – Leh highway in a better way as well.

Having said that even on Srinagar – Leh Highway its always good that you take little precautions to further minimize the effects of high altitude  sickness. Here are some tips which will help acclimatizing the body faster

  • Try to cover the Srinagar – Leh journey in two days with a night halt at Kargil most preferably.
  • Keep your body properly hydrated.
  • Avoid sleeping at high altitudes.
  • Avoid over exertion.
  • Avoid tobacco and smoking and alcohol and other depressant drugs.
  • Keep your body warm and eat lots of carbohydrates.
  • Avoid sleep during the day.
  • Sleep in upright position, if possible.
  • Carry preventive medicines for AMS.
  • Immediately descend, if symptoms increase.

For more information on Acute Mountain Sickness and all above acclimatization tips, please refer the following link at least once: Acute Mountain Sickness and Importance of Acclimatization

Fuel or Petrol Pumps on Srinagar – Leh Highway

Again, unlike Manali – Leh Highway, it is easy to find fuel or petrol on Srinagar – Leh Highway. One can get fuel or petrol on Srinagar Leh Highway at:  Srinagar, Kangan, Sonamarg, Kargil, Mulbekh, Wakha,  Khaltsi, Leh

ATMs on Srinagar – Leh Highway

As per my knowledge there are ATMS available at Ganderbal, Drass, Kargil apart from Leh and Srinagar ATMs. I guess you should carry enough cash with you in Ladakh because ATMs at these limited places can run out of money or become un-operational at any day or time.

Places on Srinagar – Leh Highway with their Distances and Altitudes

Generally, the places of on Srinagar – Leh Highway majorly goes like Srinagar – Sonamarg – Zozi La – Drass – Kargil – Mulbekh – Namika La – Fotu La – Lamayuru – Khaltsi – Sasapol – Nimmu – Leh and the approximate distances between these places is shown below briefly –

  • Srinagar – Sonamarg (80 KMs)
  • Sonamarg – Drass (65 KMs)
  • Drass – Kargil (55 KMs)
  • Kargil – Mulbekh (40 KMs)
  • Mulbekh – Lamayuru (70 KMs)
  • Lamayuru – Leh (125 KMs)

Summarized View of Facilities or Amenities on Srinagar – Leh Highway



Accommodations / Stay Options

Sonamarg, Drass, Kargil (Many options), Mulbekh, Lamayuru, Alchi
Food / Beverages Sonamarg, Drass, Kargil (Many options), Mulbekh, Lamayuru, Alchi
Diesel / Petrol Pumps Mangan, Sonamarg, Kargil, Mulbekh, Wakha, Khaltsi
Mobile Connectivity
  • Upto Sonamarg both BSNL and Airtel post paid connections work, then in Drass only BSNL, once you reach Kargil you will get the Airtel signal, but then in Mulbekh and Lamayuru only BSNL works, in Nimmu Airtel is restored along with BSNL and once you reach Leh both Airtel and BSNL works.
  • Of course BSNL has more coverage and better connectivity within this range than any other operator. Airtel works in Ladakh but with poor connectivity.
  • SMS does work fine for both BSNL and Airtel.
  • Vodafone did not work after Srinagar and but now works in Leh – Ladakh with Aircel. Surprisingly, Anadi reports recently (June 2013) below that it does not work anymore, may be contract renewal did not happen or what. So, do not rely on Vodafone.
  • Aircel also work in Leh and adjoining areas.
  • Packet data works but only with BSNL that too with EDGE only.
  • Prepaid connections from outside Jammu and Kashmir do not work in Leh – Ladakh. Carry only post-paid.
  • Anadi reports below: Vodafone postpaid still does not work after anywhere after Srinagar on Srinagar-Leh Highway and towns falling on the said highway.(It works in Gulmarg and Pahalgam). It did not work in Sonemarg, Drass, Kargil, Mulbek, Khaltse, Nimmu and Leh. Bsnl was omnipresent. In Leh, Bsnl, Airtel and Aircel were working. Vodafone, Reliance and Idea were not working.
Fixed Phones Ganderbal, Sonamarg, Drass, Kargil, Mulbekh, Lamayuru, Alchi, Nimmu and in between these places as well
Electricity Almost all the towns en-route have electricity and I wonder if there is any town which lacks it.
Medical Facilities Sonamarg, Drass (limited), Kargil, Lamayuru (limited)
ATMs Ganderbal, Drass, Kargil
Mechanic / Puncture Shops Ganderbal, Sonamarg, Kargil, Lamayuru (Puncture), Mulbekh (Puncture), Nimmu (Puncture)
Liquor Shops Sonamarg, Drass, Kargil


Have you ever been to Srinagar – Leh Highway? If yes, please share your view points, suggestions or inputs as comments below, it will help other fellow travelers to plan their own journey on one of the beautiful highways of India. Are you planning to go to Ladakh via Srinagar – Leh Highway? If yes, please feel free to ask any queries or doubts you have regarding the same as comments below. I will be happy to reply and discuss them with you. Looking forward for your responses :)

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  1. Kantilal Patel on

    Dear Dhirajji,
    I am of 62 years, and want to travel Srinagar to Leh Ladakh on 1st week of July after Amarnath yatra. Kindly guide me.

      • touchableroad on

        Hi Dheeraj
        i was just wondering is travelling the leh sriningar route safe to do for 2 foriegners on foreign bikes alone in september?

        • Yeah, there should not be any problem I see on both Srinagar – Leh and Manali – Leh roads in September. Both roads are best in condition during the end of season with less traffic over it.

        • touchableroad on

          hi again Dheeraj thanks for your reply..was also wondering if you could recommmend a route for us..we will start in dehli and work our way through to leh via sriningar and back to dehli.. we should arrive in dehli around 1st of september and we are planning a 6months motorbike trip around the whole of india while raising money for a charity aswell..we would like to see as many sights as possible and possible routes for each..what could u recommened for we wont have a problem with time

        • Wow, I envy you now 😉 😉 …

          Regarding route I will give you a guideline kind of thing in days, you can put in more days of rest in between as you ride and go:

          Day 1 | Delhi – Patnitop
          Day 2 | Patnitop – Srinagar
          Day 3 | Srinagar
          Day 4 | Srinagar – Pahalgam
          Day 5 | Pahalgam
          Day 6 | Pahalgam – Gulmarg
          Day 7 | Gulmarg
          Day 8 | Gulmarg – Sonamarg
          Day 9 | Sonamarg – Kargil
          Day 10 | Kargil – Purikutchey/Panikhar
          Day 11 | Purikutchey/Panikhar – Penzi La – Drang Drung Glacier – Padum
          Day 12 | Padum
          Day 13 | Padum
          Day 14 | Padum – Kargil
          Day 15 | Kargil – Lamayuru – Alchi
          Day 16 | Alchi – Likir – Basgo – Leh
          Day 17 | Leh Local + Permits
          Day 18 | Leh Local Sighseeing
          Day 19 | Leh – Khardung La – Nubra Valley (Deskit/Hunder)
          Day 20 | Explore Deskit and Hunder
          Day 21 | Deskit/Hunder – Turtuk
          Day 22 | Turtuk
          Day 23 | Turtuk – Hunder – Deskit – Sumur/Panamik
          Day 24 | Sumur/Panamik – Khardung La – Leh
          Day 25 | Leh – Hemis – Pangong Tso
          Day 26 | Pangong Tso (Visit Man – Merak Villages)
          Day 26 | Pangong Tso – Thicksey – Shey – Leh (or if OK with basic stay go and stay at Rumste/Upshi)
          Day 27 | Leh/Rumste/Upshi – Tso Moriri
          Day 28 | Tso Moriri
          Day 29 | Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Debring – Pang – Sarchu
          Day 30 | Sarchu – Jispa
          Day 31 | Jispa
          Day 32 | Jispa – Udaipur – Jispa
          Day 33 | Jispa – Chandratal
          Day 34 | Chandratal – Kaza
          Day 35 | Kaza (Ki, Kibber, Gette)
          Day 36 | Kaza/Langza Homestay (Hikkim, Koumik, Langza)
          Day 37 | Kaza – Dhankar – Pin Valley
          Day 38 | Pin Valley – Tabo
          Day 39 | Tabo – Geyu Mummy – Nako
          Day 40 | Nako – Kalpa
          Day 41 | Kalpa – Sangla/Chitkul
          Day 42 | Sangla/Chitkul
          Day 43 | Sangla/Chitkul – Sarahan
          Day 44 | Sarahan – Narkanda – Chail
          Day 45 | Chail – Delhi

          This 45 days of mammoth trip, makes you touch the most parts of Kashmir, Ladakh, Lahaul Valley, Spiti Valley and Kinnaur Valley at ease.

          I hope this helps. Please let me know in case you have any queries or doubts.

          Dheeraj Sharma

  2. Kalpesh Agrawal on

    Dude.. who are you man? who gives ATM and mobile connectivity details on blog?
    My first question is : How many times have you been to leh to collect all this info?
    Second: I am planning Srinagar– 2 days taxi– LEH(8 days)— 1 day taxi — srinagar. (Because srinagar flights are cheaper). How does the coming back in a day sound to you?
    Third and last : I read on page 10 of taxi rates about 3 day trip to deskit, hunder, panamic and pangong via shyok. How cool is that? and it starts and ends at leh right?

    Again.. you guys are amazing. Keep up the good work.

    • Kalpesh, well, thank you so much :) … I have been consistently going to Ladakh since 2009 almost every year on an average :) :) It is just love to know more about the place, nothing much :) :)

      1. You can come back to Srinagar from Leh in one day. IT will take about 15-16 Hrs.
      2. IF you have couple of taxis in the convoy, then you should travel Shyok route else since it is quite desolated route, I will not recommend traveling over it with just single vehicle as in case of any break down there will not be any help at all :)

      • Kalpesh Agrawal on

        Thanks for the insight. We are only 4 people (3 ladies in that).. So we wont be having a spare arrangement.
        But is it worth visiting considering all the risk? Is it something different or just passable?

        Again.. Respect for the dedication and love..
        And i will make sure i carry a lot of books and stationary for sure..

        • Kalpesh, ever route of Ladakh has its own beauty and offer its own serenity. However, there is nothing worth against the risk which relates to life and death or being stuck in a place where you are not sure when a help will arrive or if it will arrive or not. I am not being pessimistic here but machines are machines and it may fail any given day.

          Thank you so much for participating in DoW Causes for spreading smiles in Himalayas :) :)

  3. Sushil Choudhari on

    Hi! we’re two friends planning to cover ladakh on a CD100 and a Unicorn. we will start from Jammu on june 1.

    im planning to do srinagar to leh via a different route as follows,

    Srinagar- Drass- Kargil- Rangdum- Penzi la- Padum- Namtse la- Zanskar- Upshi- Nimu-Leh

    So that we will be able to cover zanskar and penzi la too…
    what would you suggest?

    also, we want to cover Panamik, Hundar, Wari la, Pangong tso, Tso Moriri, and Tso kar then EXIT via manali.

    how many days will it take? and how much Kms will we cover doing all this.


    • Sushil, the route you want to take from PAdum to Nimmu (Upshi is not there) is a trek route not a route by road. Road is being constructed there, will take few years to open. So, you have to travel from Padum back to Kargil and then Kargil to Leh via Lamayuru.

      Going by the bikes, in case the conditions of bikes are average, I will not attempt to take Wari La route due to its desolation and no one to help in case something goes kaput in 100s of miles. I will suggest you follow conventional routes for this time.

      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.

  4. sushama matkar on

    Hi Dheeraj sir,

    WE the family of 4 planning to visit leh in first week of june 2016. your detailed guidance is of immense help for me to chalk out the plan. But for booking hotels after reaching Leh seems very difficult. please comment.


    • If you are looking for bookings over phone, you can connect with as most of the readers in the past three 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.

  5. Hi Deeraj
    We are a family of 3 planning to visit ladakh in June,16 via Srinagar.Will reach Srinagar on 10th June and will halt on 11th June before proceeding to Leh on 12th June. Whether we should stay in house boat instead of hotel? Which is thw better option?

  6. Anupam Gupta on

    Hi Dheeraj,
    This page seems really informative. I have been debating between Manali – Leh and Srinagar – Leh, but it seems the logical choice is Srinagar – Leh. I am planning a trip in first week of June, and I guess there is no certainty but this route has a higher probability of being open.

    I was curious to know what would be the best way to travel. I will have a group of 4 people. The 9000-12000 that you mention for a private cab is for a hatchback or a bigger SUV? Also, how good are the buses? Does it make sense to go super-economical and take a bus that has a halt at Kargil for the night?

    Do the cabs from Leh – Srinagar also cost the same? Where do you book these?

    Thanks a lot for the wonderful information!


    • Hello Anupam,

      There are no hatches that run on this route. Now, the taxi fare for private taxis are mostly around 13000-14000 for a two day drop to Leh. The seats in shared taxis cost around 1200-1600 depending upon days of travel over Srinagar to Leh. Buses cost around 700-800

  7. Hi Dheeraj,

    Its really nice and informative page in the whole world of internet for ladakh trip. Can see the efforts you have put in. I have few questions. Hope could get help from you.

    I am planning for Ladakh with a group of friends in the month of August’16. I read the whole article but could you please let me know what would private taxi mean here. Also wanted to make sure if Kargil has enough Taxi service and we are not stranded once we reach there.

    We were also thinking of staying at pangong lake in tents. I had read somewhere that an overnight stay is provided in tents at pangong lake by some trek organizers. Could you please comment on this as well whether it is wise enough to stay in swiss tents as I am not very sure about the climate there in august.

    Lastly, how much will be the approx budget for 10 days from Srinagar-kargil-leh-manali?

    • Thank you Sanchita !! :) :)

      Prvate Taxi mean that the taxi will only belong to you guys not shared with any local or tourists. It will be only your group or the ones you will allow will be allowed in the taxi, not others unless you allow them. The taxi charges will be for the whole taxi while in shared taxis, taxi charges are per seat basis.

      Yes, Kargil as loads of taxis, you will not go wrong with them.

      No at all, it is wrong info. some one provided to you. 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 budget, you can take around 800-1200 per day per person for food + stay. Rest wil be your taxi which may cost around 50-60K

  8. pavan shukla on


    I want to know the cost of hiring byk from Delhi to Leh for 10 days or in leh for sight seeing or roaming in region.

    • Are you planning by car or bike?

      Bikes rented outside Leh are not allowed for sightseeing inside Ladakh except Tso Moriri and Tso Kar lakes which can be done while going to Manali from Leh. Private bikes are completely allowed. You can use the outside rented bike to reach Leh but then for going to Pangong Tso, nubra Valley, etc.. you need to hire rented bikes from Leh only.

      To know more about this rule and present situation, please refer the link: Bikes Rented Outside Leh Banned in Ladakh

      This year as per reports, rule is going to be stricter. Manali rental guys have formalized a deal that for the days Manali bike is parked in Leh and Leh bike is rented, they will charge 50% of the rent of the bike. So, confirm with Manali rental guys first about this signoff.

      For renting bikes in Leh – Ladakh along with current Bike Union Prices, you can check the DoW Community thread: Leh – Ladakh Bike Rental Rates 2015 – 16 & Reliable Shops

  9. pavan shukla on

    hi Dhreeraj,

    we five friends are planning 10 days Srinagar-Leh-Manali 5th may onwards. want to know How to visit,as outside cars are not allowed in leh-ladakh for sight seeing. please suggest mode of transport

    • Pavan, who told you that outside cars are not allowed? It is outside taxis AND outside rented self drive car which are banned not private cars. Also, you can still take them into Leh and come back from Leh in them. Just for Ladakh sightseeing you need to hire local taxis.

      5th May is too optimiztic date to travel Srinagar to Ladakh to Manali as roads especially Manali – Leh opens either in late May or June first week only. This year can be exception with all the no snow in Himalayas everywhere but you never know if it snows tons in March.

  10. dheeraj,
    I am big fan of ths web. appreciate your attempt and keep update this website
    when i go to leh , i supposed to visit the village turtuk which is last village near to china pak boarder . I have seen tht many peoples gng to tht beautiful village via leh and recently opened for tourists . do you know if there any procedure to enter there ?

    • Jeswin, if you are an Indian then in that case you can travel upto Turtuk. After acclimatization days in Leh, you can start your journey as below over 3 days

      Leh – Khardung La – Deskit – Hunder – Turtuk
      Turtuk – Hunder
      Hunder – Deskit – Khardung La – Leh

  11. Vaibhav Patwardhan on

    I am planning a trip to leh via srinagar . I will reach delhi on 28 May 2016. I would like to know from delhi , are there buses available to srinagar ? If yes, where to book the bus seats, place ? Any other mode of transport you can suggest ?

  12. Saswati Majumder on

    we two are planning for ladakh in june, 2016. I have some queries like…
    1. what should be the costing for hiring a car/taxi from kargil to leh via mulbek, lamayuru, alchi, likir including one night stay at alchi ?
    2. what types of accomodations are available in panamik/turtuk (nubra valley)?
    3. we want to stay 2 nights at nubra valley ( 1 night at deskit and 1 night at panamik/turtuk). would we get shared car? if not, is there any local transportation available for leh to deskit drop? deskit to panamik? then panamik to leh?
    4. does the taxi association of leh conduct the triangle tour (leh-nubra-pangong-tsomoriri-leh) ?

    • 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 2015 – 16 including the contacts of some reliable taxi drivers within Leh – Ladakh, check the link here. You can get about 10-12% of discount by directly getting in touch with drivers and of course, talking in person rather on phone always help in bargaining more.
      While going from Srinagar to Leh, you might need to work out few things as there have been some tensions now in taxi unions and to settle it out what they have done is that they have a transit point just before Fotu La while going to Leh from Kargil. All Leh taxis stop there and kargil taxis too. They exchange passengers and move back in respective directions. Leh taxis take passengers to Leh coming from Srinagar/Kargil and Kargil guys take passengers to Srinagar/kargil coming from Leh

      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.

      • my question is ,i have tent so can i use the tent for stay when i travel from jammu to leh? may be i will go alone on oct first or second week

        • Jeswin, it will be too cold to stay in tents in October in Ladakh. Upto Kargil, it shall be fine with temperatures not that muuch but beyond that it will be quite cold to stay overnight in tents unless you are used to it.

  13. Hi Dheeraj.

    I just registered myself on your site & it’s a treasure trove (Although I have been sneaking in since last few years without registering :-))….so thanks for creating this platform.

    We are planning a bike trip for 2 weeks to Leh (July 1st half). We are from Bangalore & will travel to Jammu by train with our bikes & then will ride to Leh & return via Manali route & take a return train from Chandigarh. I’ll of course go through all the Articles seeking the usual answers but here is a tricky one I didn’t find anywhere on net. ” What kind of Bike to use for this trip?”….
    I mean Bullet is great & all but I’m planning it on my Honda Shine (125 CC)…I’m a little hesitant to hire a bike & travel…I like my bike & would like to stick to it if possible. Will it be good enough??????


    • Good to know that Anand bhai and glad you loved the Devil On Wheels Travel Platform. I personally suggest that you take a bike with which you are comfortable with not seeing the power of the bike. All bikes are capable enough to make a successful trip to Ladakh and at times you feel less power especially at high altitude passes but that should be OK I guess.

  14. dheeraj sharma on

    Hi Dheeraj ,

    1st of all thanks a ton for such a nice information which will be very helpful in our upcoming laddak trip.

    we are planing for 1st or 2nd week of may when ever srinagar leh highways opens up.
    we will be hiring self drive scorpio from delhi and will cover the route as you suggested. Just wanted to check howz the road for driving and what precautions we should take while driving to laddak

  15. HI,
    i am planning to take Srinagar route to ladakh. I will be starting from delhi on 28th may and would be back to delhi on 5th June. So total I have 7 days approx will it be enough to cover the trip. Also in this time roads will be open ?
    Thanks in advance

    • Chinmay, It will take 4 days to reach Leh from Srinagar side starting from Delhi and 3 days to come back from Leh from Manali side to Delhi. This makes it 7 days. 1 Day is required in Leh for acclimatization.

      So, ideally you will just be on road only

  16. Hi Dheeraj,

    Is it possible to accommodate “Drang-Drung Glacier” while travelling from Srinagar to Leh during 18-22nd May’16? Will this inclusion increase the travel between Srinagar & Leh by another day?


    • Debjit, visiting Drang Drung will require about 12 Hrs of arduous road journey from Kargil to Kargil. If you have one full day and ready for the arduous journey then you can make it. Yes, this will include tiring one day

  17. Hello dhiraj sir,
    I am samir. Did solo bike ride all over Maharashtra. Single day ride almost 850 km. First time planning to leh on bike. I m planning to leave Mumbai on 10july 2016. If all goes well I will take halt at Ajmer. Else somewhere in between. Second or third halt will be Amritsar. 4th Jammu. Onwards according to ur guide route. I m looking for people who can join me. Please suggest me abt this route or shall I make change in this. My contact no. 8767497919. Thank u for ur valuable suggestions and posts.

  18. Lokesh Nahar on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    Good write up. Touched upon every detail and very much informative. Will help a lot for my up coming tour.

    I am planning a tour to Leh Ladakh at the start of June 2016 or mid June 2016. We are planning for 12- 13 days tour and we will be around 6 – 7 of us. We wish to take Srinagar Leh route and return via Leh Manali route.
    We will be flying from Mumbai to Srinagar.

    Below are some doubts that I have around the tour.

    1) Will we get a bike on rent from Srinagar and will we be able to drop the same at Manali?

    2) Is the below itinerary ok:

    Day 1: Arrive in Srinagar
    Day 2: Srinagar to Kargil
    Day 3: Kargil to Leh
    Day 4: local sight seeing at leh and getting acclimatized
    Day 5: leh to nubra and stay at nubra
    Day 6: nubra to leh
    Day 7: leh to Pangong
    Day 8: Camping at Pangong
    Day 9: Pangong to Leh
    Day 10: Leave for Manali
    Day 11: Stay in Manali
    Day 12: Leave from Kullu to Mumbai

    3) Where do we hire bikes from Srinagar or Leh?

    4) Do we need to take a mechanic with us?

    5) What should be average rent for a bike on per day basis?

    Any additional inputs are welcomed. Please share your contact details if you can which will be of great help.

    Thanks in Advance

    • Hi Lokesh,

      Bikes rented outside Leh are not allowed for sightseeing inside Ladakh except Tso Moriri and Tso Kar lakes which can be done while going to Manali from Leh. Private bikes are completely allowed. You can use the outside rented bike to reach Leh but then for going to Pangong Tso, nubra Valley, etc.. you need to hire rented bikes from Leh only.

      To know more about this rule and present situation, please refer the link: Bikes Rented Outside Leh Banned in Ladakh

      This year as per reports, rule is going to be stricter. Manali rental guys have formalized a deal that for the days Manali bike is parked in Leh and Leh bike is rented, they will charge 50% of the rent of the bike. So, confirm with Manali rental guys first about this signoff.

      For renting bikes in Leh – Ladakh along with current Bike Union Prices, you can check the DoW Community thread: Leh – Ladakh Bike Rental Rates 2015 – 16 & Reliable Shops

      The one way bike rental is quite costly and leave a big dent in pocket for you, sometimes like 12K for just the pickup from Manali. Be sure if you are ready to make that investment or not or if at all it is worth the money spent. My suggestion is unless you are hard core biker and cannot live up the passion of biking, it is not wise to spend that much money just for the pickup of bike.

      I will suggest that you go through the articles mentioned under the DoW Community thread for bike trip to Ladakh or any other part of Himalayas at the link: All About Bike Ride to Ladakh & Himalayas. This will help you cover almost all your queries related to bike trip to Ladakh or Himalayas.

      2. Your plan looksOK except that you can make two day trip to Pangong Tso and wil have to use one day saved from there to make two day trip over Manali – Leh with overnight stay at Sarchu

      3. Answered above

      4. Well, it really is a personal choice between good to have thing.

      5. Answered above.

  19. Hi Dheeraj “Spiti baba” ,

    First of all thanks a ton for guiding me for spiti valley circuit ride. Am planning for a Gulmarg bike ride at the end of December .Am following itinerary :
    25th December : Chandigarh to Patnitop
    26th December : Patnitop to Gulmarg
    27th December : Gulmarg
    28th December : Gulmarg
    29th December : Gulmarg to Jammu
    30th December : Jammu to Chandigarh

    Kindly let me know if it is Ok to go ahead .Am taking my Thunderbird 350 .Please let me know your inputs.

    Thanks ,

  20. prabhakar rao on

    i am planning srinagar with my family.when the snowfall will start in 2015 2016
    pls mail ur tel no.

  21. We are planning to cycle from Srinagar to Leh and from Leh to Keylong and afterwards from Keylon to Srinagar again.

    What time is best option for cyclists? We reckon september.
    Do you think the journey as a complete cycling tour is possible?
    As an extra we would like to go over the Kardhung La and back via Agham en Sakti?
    As the option via Batalik also an option for cyclists?

    And is it safe as a foreigner to travel their on bicycles?

    • Joris, September is the best time to travel. I will not suggest Agham route as there is nothing up there and any help will not be available in miles of distance in case required. For Batalik route, you will need permits. And yes, totally safe alot of foriengers bicycle every year.

  22. Hi Dheeraj,
    First of all I would like to appreciate the prompt replies you are giving for the queries..
    Myself and my family (wife and 4.5 year son) are planning to travel srinagar- leh ladakh – manali from September 16th onwards..
    Following is my plan

    Day1: arrive in delhi
    Day2: Delhi to srinagar by flight and leisure at srinagar
    Day3: srinagar to Kargil
    Day4: Kargil to leh
    Day5: local sight of seeing at leh and getting acclimatised
    Day6: leh to nubra and stay at nubra
    Day7: nubra the to leh
    Day 8: leh to Pangong and back to leh
    Day 9: leh to jisp
    Day 10 : just to manali and stay at manali
    Day 11: leisure at manali and start to delhi
    By overnight volvo

    Considering I have my son with me, now I feel like my day 8 will be little hectic and not that practical. So I want to accommodate one more day for leh so that I can stay one day at Pangong and return only next day.

    What would you suggest for this?
    My total number of days can’t be extended as I am coming from abroad and my to and fro tickets to delhi cannot be changed.

    One thing I can think of rake early morning flight to Srinagar on day 2 and directly proceed to Kargil so that I can save day 3 schedule for an extra day at leh. What do you suggest?

  23. hi guyz..
    I am planning for a trip to leh..
    will be reaching srinagar on 13th september & have return flight on 19th september from sringar..
    Guys kindly advise me how to plan the to go as me going with my wife.

  24. Hi Dheeraj,

    We are planning to visit leh, Srinagar- Leh-Manali during Oct 30-Nov 5 2015. Heard that BRO is going to keep the road open till nov 31 this year. Please advise if we can visit during this time and also about the roads, hotels.

    Thanks in Advance :)

  25. Hi,is srinagar-leh highway is safe for travellers,as my uncle works in army he says Srinagar-leh highway is not safe as very few members will go to leh,there will be very less mode of transportation and there will be firing in between this highway and without permission we can’t go to leh.He is threatening like anything. Is this all true?

  26. Karnik Gulati on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    I really appreciate your efforts of guiding everyone personally about Leh, Ladakh. Coming to my query, we are a group of 5 guys travelling to Ladakh for 7 nights/8days in end of September 2015. We would be going through Srinagar highway.

    Our itinerary is as follows:
    Day 1: Arrive in Srinagar and proceed towards Leh with overnight stay in Kargil
    Day 2: Night stay in Leh
    Day 3: Night stay in Pangong
    Day 4: Night stay in Leh
    Day 5 & 6 : Night stay in Nubra
    Day 7: Night stay in Leh
    Day 8: Departure from Leh

    We have booked our tickets but we are yet to book the hotels, etc. Till now our plan was to book through the agent so as to avoid any last minute delays due to obtaining the permit, etc. But after reading your blogs and the comment of Mr. Justin, we are considering to book everything on our own so as to save on some money.

    Now my queries in this regard are as follows:

    1) Is it difficult to obtain the permits and all on our own? If no, what is the exact procedure and the time it would take taking those permits.
    2) Give us some good reasonable hotel/camp options in Kargil, Leh, Pangong and Nubra with all necessary facilities like heating system, hot water, decent food, etc.
    3) Is it worth while staying in Nubra for 2 nights? Or can you suggest some other place which we should see instead of spending 2 nights in Nubra?
    4) How difficult it is to obtain taxi from Srinagar to Leh with overnight stay in Kargil?

    Thank you in anticipation.

    Karnik Gulati

    • Karnik, please replace Nubra Valley with Pangong Tso as you will not acclimatized. You do not need any permits for above plan. Rest all looks OK,. You will get the taxi on the spot too.

      • Karnik Gulati on

        Thanks for a super prompt reply Dheeraj. :) I would like to know if there is any difference between Pangong Tso and Pangong. Further, we would be going to Nubra during the last leg of our trip so not getting acclimatise as per you did not convince me or may be i didn’t get your point. Are you suggesting to forget Nubra totally or you meant we should spend only one night instead of two in Nubra? Please elaborate a bit more on this.

        Karnik Gulati

        • There is no difference between Pangong tso and Pangong . Nubra is at a lower altitude than Pangong Tso, so you have to visit Nubra Valley first and then go to Pangong Tso. Do not go to Pangong Tso first.

  27. Hello, which is it better to overnight stay in Sonamarg, Dras or Kargil? We were told that Dras and Leh has almost the similar altitude..

  28. Ravindran Chari on


    Your write-up is very comprehensive, incisive and has lots of clarity. I am planning to drive down from Mumbai to Leh via Rajasthan, Srinagar and back in 2016 in my Ford EcoSport. Thanks for all the wonderful details. Cheers!

    • Vinod maheshwari on

      Please take a test drive of Ecosport to some nearby rough mountain area before driving to tough roads of Leh. I too have a petrol ecosport. it is urban suv..good for city drive but poor car for tough roads. You will reach…but such cars are not powerful enogh to meet dificult situations…

  29. Narendra Desai on

    Very thorough details. Srinagar-leh is a proper choice. Hiring taxi only upto Kargil & hiring another from there would help in visiting Lamayuru, Alchi, Likir & gurdwaras on the way to leh. So nice of of you to provide guidance. Will remember you on 12 &13 on the highway.

  30. Lokanath Tripathy on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    I along with 3 of my friend are leaving for srinagar from mumbai on 8th aug.
    2 out of 4 guys have little experience in riding bike. We want to stick to bike ride. |

    Few questions i would like to ask you
    a. whether double ride is possible or not if we go by srinagar leh highway and we are returning by the same route
    b. our return flight is on 16th august from srinagar at 3 PM, so we are covering the highway twice, so would like to know whether NH 1D will open on 15th august?
    c. To save travel distance, instead of coming to leh from nubra we are directly going to pangong lake; how can we cover with fuel is a constraint ?
    d. People go to Pangong lake or Pangong TSo which is far from lake ? Do we need permit for pangong Tso ?

    • Hi Lokanath,

      1. Cannot really say but with inexperienced riders there will always be some risk.
      2. Highway will be open, no reason to close on 15th August
      3. At present both direct routes to Pangong Tso from Nubra were closed. Take a call once reach there at Nubra and conforming.
      4. I could not get the last question first part. Both Pangong Tso and Pangong lake are same thing as Tso is meant for lake in Tibetan language. You do not need permit for Pangong Tso now being indians.

    • Hi All Travelers.

      we successfully completed the Trip from Chennai-Srinagar-Leh (july 24 -April 1) only 2 people we just followed DOW and guidelines /Response from Dheeraj., Thanks to DOW and MR .Dheeraj Sir.

      Please follow the guidelines i am just repeating what Dheeraj sir always used to say and guided us.
      1. Always avoid agents for cab booking or hotel room booking. once you reach Srinagar just spend 30 mins to one hour on your own . you will get very good hotels . I repeat avoid agents we saved lot of money. cab from Srinagar to leh (innova – 1700 Rs ). we are 7 people tool 13 hours. to reach. Local and private bus available for 1000 to Rs 1500 based on the confort.
      2.we booked brand new Bullet 350(white color) in leh for Rs 13000 per day without petrol.
      3 Always carry fuel with you , we cant find any petrol bunk on the way to Nubra valley.
      4. No permit needed you just need to fill a normal form on each checkpost.
      5. you can drive the bike all the places in the Leh . but be confident while driving and always carry water bottle I bet you will be needed . Myself and my friend hired RE 350 CC and travelled in single bike for 5 days .
      Day1- Chennai-Srinagar (stayed in Boat house)
      Day2- we travelled srinagar -leh ( our bad luck due to landslide and cloud burst we are blocked at Kangan and sent back to srinagar will be road closed for 4 days ) .same day eveneing we travelled to GUlmarg and we reached
      day 3– Gulmarg- Horse ride from bottom to phase 1 – we are luckily weather got better we reacher thr top of glacired phase 2 using the rope care. -evening Gulmarg to srinagar return.
      day 4- we are lucky road opened we started traveling Srinagar to leh. but again blocked @ sonogram due to traffic @ Zohilla pass .we reached leh in the mighnight @ 1AM.
      Day 5-Woke up very late leh local site seeing hired bike and roamed all the places in Leh
      day 6 – leh – kardungla -naubra valley(bike)
      day7 — naubra valley – leh (bike)
      day8 – Leh – pangong lake (bike)
      day 9 –pangong lake -leh(bike)– eveing we started to srinagar (innova)
      Day 10:we reached Srinagar morning 9 AM and taken rest in hotel and roamed again ni boats and all the gardens in Srinagar
      Day11 -srinagar to chennai returned in Flight.

      we finished the entire trip in just 19000 per head (excluding the flight tickets).
      Note : make sure you hire very good bullet or new ones though it is 100 Rs or 200 RS extra.

      Avoid leh-pangaong -leh on same day if you plan to return on same day you cant spend more time. its such a awesome place you have to stay @ night.
      For 800 to 1000rs you will be very very good hotel stays with heaters.


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