Inner Line Permits for Kinnaur – Spiti Valley


Generally, if you are an Indian citizen then probably you do not need any permits for Kinnaur and Spiti Valley or anywhere in entire Himchal Pradesh (except the recently introduced permits for vehicles outside Himachal to ply on Manali – Rohtang Pass road. For more details, click here). But, if you are a Foreign National visiting the regions of Lahaul – Spiti Valley and Kinnaur Valley then you are required to get the inner line permits for these protected areas near by international borders. Even though Indian citizens are not required to carry any permits but carrying a valid photo ID proof of your nationality is always advisable.

In Himachal Pradesh, Foreign Nationals visiting the protected areas of Lahaul – Spiti Valley and Kinnaur Valley are required to get the inner line permits or ILP. Domestic (Indian) tourist do not require any permits. If you are Indian, then just carry a valid photo ID proof  of your nationality to be on safe side.

Given below are some facts or information you may like to know about inner line permits (ILP) for Leh – Ladakh…

Information for Kinnaur – Lahaul – Spiti Valley Inner Line Permits

  • In Himachal Pradesh, Foreign Nationals are required to get Inner Line Permits for visiting these places Khab, Samdo, Dhankar, Tabo, Gompa, Kaza, Morang and Dubling as per official website of Lahaul – Spiti region
  • It is a place called Jangi in Kinnaur Valley (after Kalpa / Reckong Peo) beyond which up to Kaza in Spiti Valley, a foreign national is required to get the inner line permits.
  • These permits are issued from DM (District Magistrate) offices located in Shimla, Reckong Peo, Kullu, and Keylong. Or, you can get these permits from SDM (Sub District Magistrate) offices located in Shimla, Rampur, Kalpa, Nichar, Keylong, Udaipur. Or, you can get these permits from ADC (Additional Deputy Commissioner) offices located in Pooh and Kaza.
  • Of course, if you are going from Shimla – Kinnaur side you need to get the permits from Shimla / Reckong Peo types or if you are coming from Manali – Keylong side then you will need to get these permits from Kullu / Keylong / Kaza types.
  • These offices open up by 10 AM  in the morning (so be sure to be present there on time) and are closed on Sunday, Second Saturday of the month and national holidays.
  • These permits are issued to foreigners in a group of four or more people coming through a reputed/registered travel agency in India. You can also try your luck going without any travel agent (especially at Reckong Peo) as well but it may or may not work depending upon the strictness at that point of time.
  • The documents required to get these permits are completely filled Inner Line Permit application form, a letter of sponsorship by a recognized travel agency, a defined itinerary of your travel, a copy of your valid passport & visa and three passport sized photographs.
  • The whole process of getting these permits will take anywhere about 2-4 Hrs or may be more. So, it is best to plan the itinerary of your travel in such a way that you get at least a day’s stay at the place from where you wish to get these permits.
  • Once the permit is processed it is signed by the ADM/ADC and you have to be present in front of him in person at the time he is supposed to sign the permits.
  • The permit is valid for a period of 2 weeks.
  • After you get the permits, make 5-6 copies of it as you will be required to submit them at police checkposts mainly at Jangi and Sumdo. Now a days I guess the guys at police checkposts just note down the details from the issued permit or ILP.
  • Although as per the GOVT. rule, there is no fees charged for the permits but you should have all the documents prepared in advance. In Shimla, there is a Sugam center now which was setup to make the process faster and efficient. They charge a fee of Rs 150-200 for the permits but to the sorry state the time of processing and efficiency is almost identical with or without that center. Of course, now you are required to pay Rs 150 – 200 for the permit which was free of cost.
  • Even at Reckong Peo and other places, people have been asked to pay about Rs 150 – 200 as fee towards Inner Line Permits every now and then but again the HP Tourism official website still says that these permits are free of cost. Not sure in where it might be going. Point is be ready to shell out Rs 150 – 200 for these permits depending upon your luck 🙂
  • Out of all, Reckong Peo is the best place to get these permits as first there is least rush + it is hustle free, second people are really helpful, third there is a computer with Webcam which takes the photos to paste them on permits, so you won’t need photos and lastly, you can always utilize the permit processing time (good 2-4 Hrs) to explore a beautiful Kalpa town about 16 odd KMs from Reckong Peo. Additionally, you will be spared off from all the nuisances which Shimla office might have. So, you shall generally avoid it getting through Shimla based on reading the not-so-good experiences of many travelers in the past.


In the end, I hope the above article provides you some helpful information  and I look forward for your thoughts or inputs or suggestions about the inner line permits of Kinnaur – Spiti Valley. Please leave your comments below if you have further questions / queries, I will try to be back with an answer as soon as possible.

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  1. umar ngalim on

    Hello Dheeraj,

    Re: DHEERAJ SHARMA on AUG 9, 2016 22:50
    Umar, above plan is too too ambitious and is not recommended at all. You should either do Spiti Valley or do Ladakh only in given days.

    Thank you for sharing that my initial plan was too ambitious. I have since tweaked as i hope to see both Leh and Spiti valley in one trip. Do let me know what you think about it please.

    Total days on the road: 15 Days

    Day 1: Srinagar
    Day 2: Kargil
    Day 3: Leh
    Day 4: Leh – Kardung la- leh
    Day 5: Tso Moiri
    Day 6: Pang
    Day 7: Keylong
    Day 8: Keylong
    Day 9: Keylong – Kaza
    Day 10: Kalpa
    Day 11: Shimla
    Day 12: Delhi

    1 – I have 3 additional days. Do share how best to spend them and where. (spiti?)
    2 – From Leh to Tso Moriri, i could only have time for 1 of these route (Upshi – Chumatang) OR (Upshi – Debring) which route would you recommend.

    Hopefully this would be a better itinerary but i am all ears for your valued advice.

    Best Regards.

  2. umar ngalim on

    HI there,

    My name is Umar and i am from SIngapore

    Im traveling solo, on a bike from leh to spiti valley.

    1 – is there a place where i could do both the permits for the ladakh area and the spiti valley at the same time? other wise, ill have to apply once in leh (for ladakh area) and another in probably Keylong for me to pass beyond Kaza.. My end destination is New Delhi

    2 – i plan to spend a day at placed where i have to do my permits and plan to get out at first light the next morning. is 1 day enough for me to accomplish the necessary permits.

    3 – You mentioned that i’ll need an authorisation letter from tour agent as part of the documentations necessary for the permit. i’ll assume that i have to walk into any tour agents in leh and keylong and ask them for this (small fee included) ? is there a better way to do this please?

    Best Regards,
    Umar Ngalim

    • Hi Umar,

      1. No, you have to apply permits for Spiti – Kinnaur in Himachal and once you reach Leh, you will have to apply permit for Ladakh.
      2. Yes, very much. Reckong Peo is the place for you.
      3. Yes, that is exactly you will need to do. Many hotels does run tour agencies as well, so they should be able to help you as well.

      • umar ngalim on

        Thank you for the prompt info Dheeraj. Sharing more of my route with the community here. Please feel free to comment if its inaccurate or if you have better route suggestions. This is a srinagar – leh – spitivalley – delhi itinerary

        Day 1: Srinagar – Kargil
        Day 2: Kargil – Leh
        Day 3-5: Leh – kardungla (kardungla would not need permit and local bike.)
        Day 5: Proceed from Kardung la to Tso Maori (Tso Maori do not need permit and local bike)
        Day 6: Tso Maori – Keylong
        Day 7: Get permit done for Spiti Valley / rest day @Keylong
        Day 8: Keylong – kalpa
        Day 9: Kalpa – Shimla
        Day 10: Shimla – Delhi

        1- I have a total of 13 days of travel. Was thinking if i could break up Day 6 into Tso Maori – Pang (overnight) before proceeding to keylong. Would this be worth it?
        2 – From Leh to Tso Maori, i could only have time for 1 of these route (Upshi – Chumatang) OR (Upshi – Debring) which one would you recommend for a first timer in the region (i.e maximum experience)

        i begin my ride early Oct and would share my trip here for the benefit of the community.

        Umar Ngalim

        • Umar, above plan is too too ambitious and is not recommended at all. You should either do Spiti Valley or do Ladakh only in given days.

  3. Saurabh Agarwal on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    I got to know about DOW from one of my friend. I have some queries and i think you are able to resolve this.
    I am planning to go on a road trip to Spiti valley along with my friends in 1st week of July.
    We are planning to take hired cab and to go via manali – rohtang pass.
    Is it a good option?
    Is “Innova” is a good option or better to take Scorpio?
    Where we have to take the inner line permits or other permits?


    • Yes Saurabh, you can take taxi from Manali and go over to Spiti Valley. If you get Scorpio, it will be better option. You do not need any inner line permit to visit Spiti Valley unless there are foreigners in the group. Secondly, you will need Rohtang Pass permit bto cross it and go to Spiti Valley but since you are arranging a taxi, the taxi guy will get the permit as it is given for a vehicle not for a person. Do ask the taxi guy to ensure permit he has got.

  4. We are planning to go from Shimla – Kalpa – Kaza to Manali, in this manner. The vehicle is self driven rental with the Delhi number plate. Do we need permit for Rohtang Pass?

  5. thatsmyway on

    Hi there, thx a lot for all the information on your webpage. I really appreciate that.

    I have some questions, just to be sure :

    I am a foreign traveller with a rented bike ( white number blade ) from Delhi. I am planning to do the spiti valley via Recong Peo. ( if I can get the permit in Recong , because I am only one)
    Am I right, that I do not need any permit more if I continue to Leh?
    And is it safe now to go the main road kaza -Leh -Srinagar without any trouble with the taxi association? am I right that I have to skip zanskar with my rented bike?

    That whole permit and rented bike thing drives me crazy. 🙂

    Greetings and thx!

    • Hello,

      1. You may need to wait for others and join their group for applying the permits.
      2. Yes, since you are going from Spiti Valley, you do not need any permit to reach Leh from Kaza. However, once you reach Leh, you will need to apply the Protect Area Permit: Protected Area Permit in Ladakh for Foreigners
      3. Yes, there will not be any issue at all on the route. It is just that once you reach Leh and you need to go to Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso and Tso Moriri, you will have to park this bike in hotel and get a rented bike in Leh to cover these places.
      4. IF you have time on hand, about 4-5 days ex. Kargil, you can do Zanskar Valley too and there is no restrictions of rented bikes and can be done on your Delhi bike.

      • thatsmyway on

        Thx alot for you fast answer. Helps a Lot!

        So is it wise just to try my luck at the office first, and and if they don’t give me the permit to try to find a group?
        Or shall I look for a group at a first place?

        Greetings from Kalpa

        • Cool, so you already in Kalpa. Well, in that case go over to Reckong Peo and try your luck. You can hang around in the market and wait for couple of more people to come and then you can join their group. It is not mandatory to travel with the group, it is just the permit that needs to be applied in the group. Once you guys have the permit, every individual can travel on his own. Just that you need to make the copies of that permit for each one of you.

  6. hlo dheeraj
    I weant to know that would i be requiring permit for rental bikes to visit spiti valley(kaza)
    and if yes please tell some details about it as we are group of 8 people.

  7. Mukul Kansal on

    hello sir…I read ur blog before all my trips..u r doing a great job
    sir I have a query
    we are group of 4 people on bikes ..2 are Indians and 2 are from Europe
    is there any permit requires to visit CHITKUL for my friend from Europe
    we are now staying in sangla ..tomrw we r leaving for chitkul..I will be very thankful sir if u can reply as early as possible

  8. Hello everyone! I am a foreign traveler, and given the new rules of taxi union leh and manali rent bikes not allowed, since I will travel with bikes rented at delhi wonder if during the return from leh to manali, at Rothang wanted to go to tabo need i ILP? if yes, where I can apply for? what do I need? I would use a trip planned for months but I had to reschedule during construction.
    thanks to all.

    • Yes, once you reach Kaza, you will be needing permits to enter the inner line from Spiti. You can apply the permits in Kaza DC office. Apart from going to Pangong Tso and Nubra Valley in Ladakh, your rented bike will be allowed everywhere

  9. Siddhartha Guchait on

    Hi Dheeraj,
    First of all I want to thanks for the wonderful site. GREAT JOB!
    I’m planning for Lahul & Spiti valley in end of June, starting from shimla and completing at Manali via Kunzum pass by personal two wheeler with West Bengal number. So, as an Indian do I or my pillion need to get any ILP? Specially for Kunzum pass and Rotang?

    Thanks in advance….

  10. sachit kataria on

    What documents are required for the inner line permit? Please tell this
    My other doubts are clear
    Nd my car number is of haryana
    So accordingly please tell me

  11. Is it possible to get a permit for Dhankar and Kaza while at Shimla (or is it better to add a day in Reckong Peo to do this?) if we are only two people? And how do we get a letter of sponsorship from a travel agency? We are not using any travel agency services in our trip. Does it matter where the agency is based – I have a friend who owns a travel agency in Macleodganj. Would that work? If so, what does the letter have to say?? Thank you!!!

    • Kyla, you can definitely try for it while in Shimla if you have time there. If you get them at Shimla, you save a day for yourself. No, it does not matter where the travel agency is based in Himachal. So, your friend should be able to help out.

      • Okay will it be a problem that we are just two people? and if we arrive in the morning in Shimla from Macleod and then want to leave for Reckong that same night is that time to get our permit?

        • Kyla, there shouldnt be any problem with two people. There are 100s of people who travel Spiti as solo travellers too every year. Hmm, it will be difficult because permit processing will take some time in Shimla.

        • Yes I will say so. You will also feel closer to destination. In case you had full day being spent in Shimla, I would have suggested to do it in Shimla

  12. Is it necessary for the trekkers to be present at reckong peo to get the inner line permits? Is it possible to get the permits through some travel agency based in peo or areas surrouding peo? Like sending the scanned copies of passport and photographs. We are planning to start the trek from sankri and reach chitkul(via lamkhaga or borasu) ,so we need to get ilp from reckong peo.

      • I got the ILP through one friend . sent him the scanned passport and photo. First he sent me a photo of ILP . Now in that photo ILP looks odd , instead of my name only surname typed, another person fathers name was typed instead of his name. And only the first trekkers address was types and for rest its -do-.
        Such silly errors were made. Of course starting point and end point, duration of trek ,dates were typed correctly. Even the pass we not mentioned ,its like trekking from sankri to chitkul village from this date to that date,no mention of borasu pass . Will we face any problem?

        • Well, if anyone in the army sees it he can surely object but in general along with rules and regulations such documents acts as a measure to rescue or get news about people passing by in the event of casualty. So, I in general feel that all documents are always in place and correctly.

  13. ashish sood on

    Hi guys

    Just read on Times of India that there is NGT order which restrits the number of vehicles going to Rohtang. Do you have idea if this is also applicable for people going to Spiti via Rohtang ????

    News :- Monday, April 11, 2016 – 12:57

    The Supreme Court on Monday refused to grant immediate relief to the taxi owners, who have challenged the National Green Tribunal’s order restricting the entry of all diesel and petrol tourist vehicles in Rohtang Pass.The Himachal Taxi Owners Association had approached the apex challenging the NGT order, which currently allows a total of only 500 petrol and CNG vehicles to go up to Rohtang every day
    The matter will be next heard on April 25.

    Link to the news

  14. Hello Dheeraj,
    We are planning to go to Chandratal while returning from Leh.
    Will we need any permits to visit chandratal while coming from Leh side.
    Our route => Leh – Tandi – Gramphu – Chhatru – Batal – Chandratal

  15. Dear Dheeraj,
    Kindly guide me about the undertaking issue. How many days ( Woking or non working) required at manali to take permit for personal vehicle to lahaul and spiti and chandertaal? Does the SDM office open on Sunday as the tourism center? If we want to camp in lahaul and spiti then how can we show advance bookings and vouchers? Even if we do not camp and take the homestay option then there is nothing to show for the permit. Person mentioned in your blogs for chandertaal, Mr. BISAN can help in this matter?

    • As there are some ares where Bangladeshis are restricted, such as Sikkim, near Pangong Tso lake in leh, the permit can be obtained only from Minstry of Home affairs of India. I just want to know that is there any specific restriction for Bangladeshis?

      • Yes, this restrictions is for the citizens of Pakistan, China, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Burma whose permits are issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) and permits for those people who are on diplomatic or official VISA are issued by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in Delhi. 

  16. Hello Dheeraj!
    I was visiting Spiti valley 21/09-05/10/2014. As a foreigner, I got ILP in Reckong Peo, through a local travel agency. For ILP you have to be in a group, which consists of two foreign travelers minimum. It takes about an hour to get ILP and process is without problems.
    Visit in Spiti was above my initial expactations. Super amazing:)

  17. Arvind Chopra on

    Hello Mr. Dheeraj Sharma:
    Thanks for posting such a valuable article regarding ILP for Spiti. Can you suggest a name and contact number of an agent who can help us obtain ILP in Reclong Peo.
    Thanks a lot.

    • Arvind, are you a foreigner? If yes, then only permit is required for you. Agent can be any registered one in Reckong Peo and the DC office there should be able to guide you on it.

      • Arvind Chopra on

        yes..i m travelling wd 3 other foreigners… was thinking of staying the night in Rampur and drive to Rekong next day.. maybe if not that difficult cd try to get in Rampur..what do u suggest??

        • Arvind, as per most of the reports, Reckong Peo is the best best place to get them but you can try at Rampur too and that should be less crowded as well as not many people stop over there.

  18. Hi,
    Best Regards from Baltics (Europe)! Thanks a lot for this site and information about Spiti. I’m planning to visit this valley alone in the end of September. It seems it is faster to go there via Manali and Losar. But I can’t find no proper information about inner line permits. Can I reach Kaza from Manali without the permit and get it in Kaza? Or should I apply for it in Manali? Or is it better for me to travel via Reckong Peo at all? Thank You for help in advance!

    • Hello Kestuks,

      Best Regards from New Delhi, India 🙂

      You can get the permits in Kaza if you are going from Manali. You can get in touch with Tsering at 09418208987 to help you out with permit once you reach Kaza as you may need to apply in group and through some registered travel agent in Kaza.


      • Hello Dheeraj,
        Thank you first for this great website. It was already really helpful for my trip to Leh. Now I plan a trip to Spiti Valley by motorcycle for next week. Can this contact speak English? Or are there any travel agencies in Kaza who can handle everything for a single person?


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    • Hi,
      Thanks- this was really useful info. We are 3 foreigners planning to travel to Spiti via Shimla Manali route. We want to do Chandratal lake trek and then visit an Indian friend teaching in Rangrik, and do some treks around villages in the Spiti valley. Monks there told us we do not need Permit if travelling through Manali, but information online seems to contradict this. Do you know if monks are right about this? Also, if we go ahead and try to get the Permit at Shimla, do you know if travel agents could could help us take care of it? I’m worried because we are 3 people and we are not travelling in an organised trip. Any help would be grately appreciated.

      • Bill as per the official website, yes, you do need permits for visiting Spiti Valley after Kaza from Manali side and beyond Jamgi from Kinnaur side. For Chandratal you do not need any permits and even for Rangrik. It is Kaza that is mentioned and beyond that towards Kinnaur. If your treks in Spiti are towards Kaza and beyond region, you should get the permits. Else if it towards Ki – Kibber region from Rangrik or to Komik Langaz, hikki, which are before Kaza, it should be OK. But, apart from that towards Kaza and beyond you will need permits which can be easily obtained from Kaza Office.

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  21. Hi again Dheeraj,

    Is getting inner line permits for Spiti easily done at Keylong?


    • Hey Matt,

      Well, never heard anything regarding Keylong but assuming it should not be as bad as Shimla and I do not have confirmation on any computer facility with web cam over there. Hence, you might need to carry or search for some photo studio in there if it is not present at their office.


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  24. Its says permits are only issued to groups of four…
    We are only travelling with two (foriegn nationals), do you think we will get permits at Reckong Peo or Shimla?


    • Matt, yes the permits are issued in the group of 4 only. You might be able to get other people to club then n there or better contact some agent (anyhow you will need one for authorization letter) who will help you out if nothing works or in worst case. As said, better option is to get the permits at Reckong Peo which is less fussy than Shimla.

      Dheeraj Sharma

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  26. Sandee Bisht on

    thanks for providing with such valuable information as it will help many tourists who are planning to visit this gorgeous valley. I have been going through several posts on Indiamike but my issue wasn’t resolved. Thanks again.

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