Inner Line Permits for Leh – Ladakh

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Leh – Ladakh journey (especially by road) is quite an experience in anybody’s life who loves to travel and I feel one must visit Leh – Ladakh at least once in his / her lifetime. The mesmerizing beauty offered by mother nature in this region is simply jaw dropping and takes your soul away within minutes. Although it has been quite a time since return from my Ladakh journey, I feel only my body has managed to arrive back and soul still explores that breathtaking vistas in my dreams. Surely, there is no other place like Ladakh in the world !!!

Being on the International borders, one need Inner Line permits to visit various inner line areas of the Ladakh region. The DC office is located in Leh town which issues the inner line permits to tourists visiting the different regions of Ladakh district and once you have the permits you can then move on with the further exploration of this cold desert. Given below are some facts or information you may like to know about inner line permits for Leh – Ladakh…

Update: April 2017 = Pay environment fees and apply for permits again
  • The environment fees of Rs 400 & Inner Line Permits (most likely as well) will again be required in Ladakh for Indian Tourists / Nationals with effect from April 1st, 2017. This has been recently announced and is available on official website of Leh administration. It is expected that a public circular should follow soon as well. Hence, like it used to happen before 2014, all Indian Nationals or Indian Tourists WILL need to pay environment fees and may need to also get the inner line permits in Leh – Ladakh region in order to visit the restricted places like Dah, Hanu Villages, Pangong Tso, Man, Merak, Tso Moriri, Nyoma, Loma Bend, Khardung La, Nubra Valley, Turtuk, Tyakshi, Digger La, Tangyar (for trekking only).
Update: May 2014 = No Permits Required in Ladakh for Indian Tourists / Nationals
  • In the recent circular published by DM in Leh, it has been stated that Indian Nationals or Indian Tourists DO NOT need any inner line permits in Leh – Ladakh region any more starting from 1st May 2014 in order to visit the restricted places: “Dah, Hanu Villages, Pangong Tso, Man, Merak, Tso Moriri, Nyoma, Loma Bend, Khardung La, Nubra Valley (up to Panamik), Turtuk, Tyakshi, Digger La, Tangyar (for trekking only)
  • As an Indian Tourist or Indian Nationals, now you can just present your valid Photo ID Nationality Proof (Driving License, Indian Passport, Aadhar Card, PAN Card, etc..) at the ITBP/Army check-posts along with a copy of a self declaration form: Link of Ladakh Self Declaration Form for Indians, when and where asked from you and that will just acts as permit for you 🙂 🙂 … You need to make copies of this self declaration form and submit them at the checkposts.
  • Please note that being an Indian or domestic tourist, you STILL NEED to apply for Inner Line Permits in order to visit places like: Hanle, Chusul, Tsaga, beyond Loma bend, Chumur, Marsimik La, Batalik sectors.
  • Some more updates in this thread in DoW Community: http://devilonwheels.com/india/ladakh-zanskar-travel-tales/topic4413-10.html#p34704

Detailed info. on this news and updates along with official circular, can be found at the link: No Permits Required for Indian Tourists in Ladakh

Information for Leh – Ladakh Inner Line Permits

  • Inner line permits are required to visit places like Nubra Valley, Khardung La, Pangong Tso Lake, Tso Moirri Lake, Dah – Hanu Villages,Hanle, Chusul, Tsaga, beyond Loma bend, Chumur, Marsimik La, Batalik sectors.
  • No permits are required to visit the local places near Leh town or Leh local sightseeing, places on Srinagar-Leh Highway, places on Manali – Leh Highway, Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri, Dah Hanu, Khardung La, Nubra Valley, Wari La, Turtuk for Indian Tourists
  • Inner line permits are issued from DC office in Leh town and you need to fill the application form to get the approval for your permits.
  • Timing of the Leh DC office are 10.00 AM to 5.00 PM (as told to us by clerk there but not confirmed as we didn’t saw it in written) but they generally do not accept applications after 3 PM I guess, so go there before 2 PM. Leh DC office is closed on Sundays and other national Holidays, hence plan the journey accordingly such that your exploration day does not start with Sunday. Having said that, I have heard that DC office is sometimes open on Sunday for half day as well but I will say don’t count on it.
  • If somehow you gets late and plan to reach/visit Leh DC office late afternoon (like after 1 PM), don’t do so because its is highly unlikely that you will get it that day. Rather try to catch some travel agent or talk to your Hotel staff to get you the required permits. They will very likely arrange these permits for you. Always try to reach the Leh DC office by 10 AM to experience a hassle free process for getting permits.
  • The permits costs you Rs 20 per day per person There is a fees of Rs 10 which is charged per tourist one time towards Red Cross Fund. Update 2012: There is a special fee for students, guess one time Rs 20 only and you need to show/attach the i-card I think with the permit copy. Also, as a part of environment fee, you might at charged Rs. 200 per person (one time) starting from 2012. (Thanks “A Jeet” below in comments, for providing updates)
  • You need to have photocopies of valid nationality proof’s Photo-IDs (Passport, Driving License, Voters ID, PAN card etc.) which proves your identity. Although the photocopies were not checked for attestation for us but I feel one should not take any chance with it and get them attested before venturing to Ladakh.
  • You may apply the permits for your entire group but you need to attach an attested photocopy of photo-id cards (nationality proof) for each member in the group and make sure to fill the required details of all group members in the permit application form.
  • Anyone who has yours or your group’s photocopies of valid nationality proof’s Photo-IDs, he/she can get these permits for you as well. Usually, the hotels in the Leh town does provide this facility if you are OK with sharing the photocopies of your nationality proof’s Photo-IDs with them either via email or fax.
  • The permit approval process may take 0.5-3 hours and hence it’s always nice that you reach early morning at the Leh DC office. Sometimes, when there is a rush of tourists, the permits are issued in two batches viz. morning and evening. Hence, try to be in for early morning batch so that you have some time to partially head towards one of the destinations of your plan or do it at ease and consider Leh local sightseeing as side option for the day.
  • The application forms required to apply for the inner line permits are mostly available at the Photostat shops nearby (one is just behind Leh office). You can also download the inner line permit application form for Leh – Ladakh from the following download link as well: Inner Line Permit Form and Application Letter. Usually, the form remains same so filling the attached form at home and completing the documentation including required photocopies can save a lot of trouble running to-fro from Photostat shops.
  • In the application form, for each member you need to mention the name with parent/guardian name, complete permanent address, the name of all the places you need to visit and the specific dates or date range for which you want these permits. At the last in copy information section, you may mention the hotel name plus address, you stayed or are staying in Leh.
  • For your reference, you can also download the sample completely filled application form which was approved for us from the following download link: Inner Line Permit Form and Application Letter
  • You need to list all major villages / towns en-route your journey in Ladakh district Writing Nubra Valley will cover the Panamik, Sumur, Diskit, Hunder etc as after North Pullu there is no check post for Nubra Valley but if you need to visit Turtuk then you should explicitly mention Turtuk even if clerk/(or any travel agent) at the office says not to do so. There were many people who were sent back due to the same error following the clerk’s or travel agent’s advice. So, mention Turtuk explicitly if you want to visit that place.
  • Besides permit application form, you need to write a request application letter addressing DC of Leh – Ladakh district for the approval of your permits. In the application, you need to express your interest in visiting the places you wish to travel along with the dates you would be visiting these places on your Leh – Ladakh trip. Make sure you write all the places that you have mentioned in application form. Both application form and this request letter should be in SYNC with each other for places and dates. For your reference you can download the sample request application from the following download link: Inner Line Permit Form and Application Letter Update 2013: The download link has been updated with template application letter where you just need to fill in the required details in pre-formatted template available at above link for download which eases out the job.
  • Once, you are done filling the application form and writing the request application to accompany it, you make two – three photocopies of the entire set consisting Application Form, Approval Request Application Letter, Photo – IDs of all the members requesting for the permits.
  • Once, the photocopies of the required set of documents are ready then you need to submit them at the DC office along with the original copies of the form and request application. The clerk will ask you to deposit the fees for required permits (amount will depend on number of days and number of member in the group) + red cross fund fees (Rs 10 per member) + Environment Fess (Rs 200 per member).
  • Once the fees are deposited, the clerk may either ask you to get the signed approval from ADC room yourself if the rush is low or he/she will place your documents in the ongoing batch for further approval. Of course, in latter case you will need to wait for the approved permits to arrive which usually takes some time about 1-3 Hrs.
  • Once, you get the stamped approved permits you need to again rush back towards Photostat shop to make photocopies of the approved permits. These photocopies of the approved permits are submitted at every check post that comes up on the way to your sightseeing destinations in Ladakh region. Hence, you should make at least 10 copies of them if you are staying longer enough in this heaven.
  • Validity of the inner line permits are 3 weeks for Indians and 1 week for foreigners. However, there is no limit on the number of times you enter a place in the valid period provided you have the permits with you for that place.
  • Although not required but you may carry the passport size photographs as well. In fact, I believe, on all your trips you should carry the passport sized photographs with you as none knows when you need one.

Permits for Hanle and Changthang or Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri

If you are interested in Changthang including Hanle area or going to Tso Moriri from Pangong Tso then consider that it is always better that you get the permits for Changthang yourself not through any travel agent or hotel member. The hotel or travel agents fool the tourist about these places and if they do not write any one of the check posts you will be sent back.

ILP for Hanle & this route is issued subject to the present political or border situation but they are in any case issued by Leh DC only and in most cases the Hanle permit is issued if you go yourself in person.

In order to get the permits for Hanle and Changthang or to go to Tso Moriri via Chusul – Tsaga – Loma – Nyoma route from Pangong Tso you need to mention all places en route so that you are not sent back from any post. These places are: Man – Merak – Chusul – Tsaga – Loma – Nyoma (for Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri) and Hanle (if plan to visit Hanle too)

Permits for inner Changthang are issued only to Indian Nationals, not for foreign tourists.

I will suggest that do not believe on what travel agents say because many of them don’t even know about the places of Changthang Valley and they fool tourists rather travelers interested in that part of Ladakh by giving some baseless statements. It is always better to get the inner line permits for Changthang including Hanle yourself.

Update: 2013: Even after getting the permits of this route, don’t consider 100% that you will be allowed to travel as army guys sent back many tourists since 2011 even having permits based on the actual present situation there. So, unless you pass Chusul or Loma from another side there is no guarantee that you will traverse that route.

Also, photography equipment are not allowed beyond Loma towards Hanle. So, in case you have cameras then please pack them in bags and refrain yourself from taking pictures en-route of sensitive areas.

Best or Quick Approach to get Leh – Ladakh Inner Line Permits

Best way to approach processing of Leh – Ladakh Inner Line Permits is to first download the application form from the link in the article. Completely fill the form and attach the photocopies of the photo ID nationality proofs with it for all members of the group. Write a request application letter addressing Leh – Ladakh DC showing your intent to visit the desired places and request the issuing of inner line permits to you for the desired duration. If you are in a group you can write the names of all the members on the group and attach copies of their photo id nationality proofs. Staple the bundle including completely filled inner line permit application form, request application letter you will write for approval and the photocopies of photo id nationality proofs from home only.

Then, once you reach Leh go to Leh DC office and submit the bundle along with the required fees. Get the permit signed from the ADC office if asked or wait for your turn to get them processed in batch and you are done. On the way back to hotel or sightseeing ahead, get 8-10 photocopies of the permits issued to you. You need to submit these photocopies of the permits at the check posts while going to Nubra, Pangong and Tso Moriri etc. This will save a lot of time for you up in Leh as there you will need to keep running up and down to photocopy shop for one thing or the other. Even to get the inner line permit form, you will need to go to nearest Photocopy shop and all this will surely kill time over there.

I am sure this would save a lot of time and fatigue for you. Although highly unlikely, the worst case scenario would be that DC office changes the attached format of the inner line permit application form and refuse to take up the old version of it. 😥 Even in that case, you will just need to fill the new form and attach the documents with it before submission.

Update: 2013: Process has been slightly changed. Now you need not visit the ADC/DC office in the permit. You can get the stamped permit in that room on the left side only after paying the required fees itself unless there is some special case in which you can request directly to ADC/DC after seeking permissions.

Conclusion

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

Again at the end, to download the application form for Leh – Ladakh inner line permit you can click the following download link : Inner Line Permit Form and Application Letter

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643 Comments

  1. Bhaskar Roy on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    We are Indian citizen, resides at Kolkata and have planned to visit Ladakh hiring local taxi and experienced driver. Time is first week of September, and the route is Manali to Leh. Return by flight.

    Queries are:

    1. Do we need to have Inner Line Permit to visit places like Khardungla, Nubra, Pangong, Tsomoriri & Hanle?

    2. What is the procedure of getting the same – it will be great help if you can tell us the updated procedure of 2017.

    3. Can we get it from my home town through mail/website link, or I need to visit Leh Administration office physically for this?

    4. We are a team of 2 persons. Do we need 2 separate Permit or 1 single permit will be OK for both of us.

    5. What is the cost for the permit?

    Regards,

  2. Hey dheeraj!
    First of all thanks for all the information, its really helpful.
    I just wanted to know if the inner line permit for an Indian citizen is issued on driving license also or only on passport?

  3. sai swaroop on

    Hi,
    Our itinerary is
    13-08-2017 Manali to Sarchu
    14-08-2017 Sarchu – Pang – Leh
    15-08-2017 Leh- Khardung La – Nubra
    16-08-2017 Nubra- Shyok- Pangong Tso
    17-08-2017 Pangong Tso – chusul – TSo moriri lake
    18-08-2017 TsoMoriri to Sarchu
    18-08-2017 Sarchu- Manali

    Can you please Let me know how many permissions would i require and the charges for the permissions

    • Hey Sai, you need Rohtang Pass permit to go beyond Rohtang Pass. And once in Leh, you will need Inner Line Permit from DC OFfice in Leh.

      Also, your plan is too too ambitious and I will not suggest such a plan. There is no rest day in Leh, then you are directly sleeping at Sarchu from Manali which will cause AMS issues.

      • sai swaroop on

        Yes sir according to your blog i have read that we need to have some bookings in LEH to get the permit for Rohtang pass, but we dont have bookings. What we have to do now?

      • Sunirmshafi on

        Hi Dheeraj

        Thanks for your very informative posts. However I am a bit confused as the article states that Indian Nationals do not require inner line permits. To summarize my questions

        1) My itinerary involves the Manali – Leh Highway. Via 4 motorbikes. Where do I get the Rohtang Pass permit? Can it be acquired online before travel? We will hit Rohtang on 30th June if the weather is all ok and the roads open. Is there any pre- requisiste such as hotel bookings etc to get this pass? What is the charge for the pass? And should we expect any kind of hindrance at rohtang of not securing this pass. Sorry for a lot of questions, but we are travelling from the UAE and have all the flights etc booked as of now for a journey to start on 30th june from Manali. Appreciate any help or direction

        2) we will stay at jispa, then sarchu and then at rumtse after which we will directly head to pangong tso. Read in your article that you need inner line permits which we need to get from LEH DC. Being Indian nationals, does it apply to us as well? Do we need to first head to Leh DC get the required permit and then head back to pangong tso?

        • Sunirmshafi on

          Dear Dheeraj

          Appreciate the response and have been waiting for the same. The requirements of the permit is now quite clear. As for my plan, I saw that you’ve mentioned that it is not recommended. Can you shed some light and provide your recommendations? We would be riding via bikes.. any help would be appreciated

          Day 1 : Manali – Jispa , halt at Jispa
          Day 2 : Jispa – Sarchu, halt at sarchu
          Day 3 : Sarchu – LEH, halt at LEH
          Day 4 : Rest in LEH
          Day 5 : LEH – Pangong . Halt at Pangong
          Day 6 : Pangong – LEH, halt at LEH
          Day 7 : Visit Khardungla and return to LEH
          Day 8 : Fly from LeH to Delhi

        • I will suggest following edits:

          Day 1 : Manali – Jispa , halt at Jispa
          Day 2 : Jispa – Leh, leave by 6 AM for sure, halt at Leh
          Day 3 : Leh rest day and acclimatization, permits are now available online.
          Day 4 : Leh – Khardung La – Nubra Valley
          Day 5 : Nubra Valley – Leh
          Day 6 : Leh – Pangong tso
          Day 7 : Pangong tso – Leh
          Day 8 : Fly from LeH to Delhi

      • Hi Dheeraj,

        I’m a Chinese,If I got ILP,Can I visit the restricted places like Tso Moriri, Nubra Valley?

  4. Hi

    Below is my Itinerary

    Day 1 – Srinagar-Sonamarg-Zoji La-Dras-Kargil

    Day 2 – Kargil-Mulbek-Namika La-Fotu La-Lamayuru-Nimmoo-Leh

    Day 3 – Sighseeing in Leh

    Day 4 – Leh-Khardung La-Sumur-Panamik-Diskit-Hunder

    Day 5 – Diskit/Hunder-Wari La-Chang La-Pangong lake

    Day 6 – Pangong Lake-Man-Merak-Chushul-Tsaka Pass-Hanle

    Day 7 – Hanle-Nyoma-Mahe-Karzok(Tso Moriri)

    Day 8 – Karzok-Tso Kar-More Plains-Sarchu

    Day 9- Sarchu-Baralacha La Pass-Keylong-Rohtang Pass-Manali

    Day 10- Manali-Chandigarh

    Let me know how many permissions would i require and the charges for the permissions

    • This looks good Ketan, you will need a permit for 5-6 days from DC office in Leh for places listed from Day 4 to Day 8. No other permit is required. Just take care of the fuel and ensure there are other vehicles in company to support on these desolated routes.

  5. Kuldeep Singh on

    Hello Sir,
    we are 4 friends plan tour from ambala to leh on 4 bikes as your guideline as
    Day 1 | Delhi – Jammu/Patnitop
    Day 2 | Jammu/Patnitop – Srinagar
    Day 3 | Srinagar – Kargil
    Day 4 | Kargil – Lamayuru – Leh
    Day 5 | Leh Local Sightseeing + Inner Line Permits
    Day 6 | Leh – Khardung La – Diskit (Nubra Valley) – Hunder – Diskit
    Day 7 | Hunder/Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Sumur – Khardung La – Leh
    Day 8 | Leh – Hemis – Pangong Tso
    Day 9 | Pangong Tso – Thicksey – Shey Palace – Leh
    Day 10 | Leh Rest Day or Sham Valley Tour around Leh including Magnetic Hills, Gurudwara Pather Sahib, Alchi, Likir, Basgo, Confluence at Nimmu
    Day 11 | Leh – Tso Moriri via Chumathang
    Day 12 | Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Moore Plains (Manali – Leh Highway) – Pang – Sarchu
    Day 13 | Sarchu – Manali
    Day 14 | Manali – Delhi

    please tell me that which place is given in permit and there is only one permit for all trip

    Thanks & Regards
    Kuldeep Singh

    • Hi Kuldeep,

      The environment fees of Rs 400 & Inner Line Permits (most likely as well) will again be required in Ladakh for Indian Tourists / Nationals with effect from April 1st, 2017. This has been recently announced and is available on official website of Leh administration. It is expected that a public circular should follow soon as well. Hence, like it used to happen before 2014, all Indian Nationals or Indian Tourists WILL need to pay environment fees and may need to also get the inner line permits in Leh – Ladakh region in order to visit the restricted places like Dah, Hanu Villages, Pangong Tso, Man, Merak, Tso Moriri, Nyoma, Loma Bend, Khardung La, Nubra Valley, Turtuk, Tyakshi, Digger La, Tangyar (for trekking only).
      For details on inner line permits process and to download application form read the link All you want to know about Inner Line Permits for Ladakh

      Only one permit is required.

      Regards
      Dheeraj

      • Kuldeep Singh on

        Thanks dheeraj sir
        if we find any problem then we contact to you again
        thanks again

      • Dear Dheeraj bhai,

        As per our itinerary (see below), we will visit Khardung la, Hundar, Turtuk, Panamik, Aghom, Shyok, Tangtse, Spangmik Pangong Tso-Man- Merak – Chusul – Tsaga – Loma – Hanle-Nyoma and Tso moriri from Leh and then to Manali.
        1.Please suggest what we need to do to get the ILP, and from where we will get it? I downloaded the form, but could not understand where we need to mention the places we intend to visit.

        2.What will be the charge per person? Is the environmental fee Rs 400 needs to be paid one time or for every day of the trip? That will be huge then..

        3. what documents need to be submitted?

        4. Will the drivers will arrange the permit? or we have to do ourselves?

        Please advice in detail.

        Day1 (30/5/17 Tue)- Kolkata to Srinagar morning flight and move to Sonamarg
        Day2 (31/5/17 Wed)- Sonamarg– Kargil/Mulbekh
        Day3 (1/6/17 Thu)- Kargil/Mulbekh – Leh
        Day4 (2/6/17 Fri)- Leh Local sightseeing and permit preparation
        Day5 (3/6/17 Sat)- Leh – Hundar
        Day6 (4/6/17 Sun)- Hundar – Turtuk – Deskit / Hundar-Panamik-Deskit#
        Day7 (5/6/17 Mon)- Deskit – Agom-Shyok – Tangtse #
        Day 8 (6/6/17 Tue)- Tangtse – Spangmik
        Day 9 (7/6/17 Wed)- Spangmik – Merak – Chusul – Tsaga – Loma – Hanle *
        Day 10 (8/6/17 Thu)- Hanle – Niddar Road – Korzok (Tsomoriri)**
        Day 11 (9/6/17 Fri)- Tsomoriri(Korzok) –Tso Kar – Barlach la (Suraj Tal) -Keylong
        Day 12 (10/6/17 Sat)- Keylong – Manali )
        Day 13 (11/6/17 Sun)- Manali – Kulu – Kalka and catch 11:50pm Kalka Mail
        Day 14 (12/6/17 Mon)- Train
        Day 15 (13/6/17 Tue)- Morning 8:00 arrive Kolkata

        If not possible,then * Day 9: Spangmik – Chusul – Saga – Chumathang
        **Day10: Chumathang – Tsomoriri Stay (Korzok)
        # If Tangtse cannot be reached directly from Hundar, then stay only 1N in Hundar…and Hundar to leh on nxt night and then Leh to Tangste.

        • Dear Amit,

          Replies below:
          
1. Where it is written “Crant Permission to Indian Citize to visit _______________” in that blank you have to mention the name
          2. Environment fee of Rs 400 is one time, permit fee of Rs 20 is per day.
          3. Your valid Photo Id Nationality Proof
          4. They can do so on your behalf, will need all the documents and filled, signed permit form from you guys.
          5. Your plan looks OK but DO NOT venture into the Niddar route alone.

  6. Chirag sankalia on

    Hi Mr dheeraj ji
    My self CHIRAG
    I will be plan leh tour on 15th August arrivals and plan 1st day (16th) – leh sightseeing (17th) – nubra valley-(night stay) (18th) – nubra to leh (19th) – pangong lake return (20th) buy bus tso moriri and night halt (21st) – return to leh buy bus. (22nd) – leh to srinager return. It is possible this plan. Plz suggests me

  7. Chandramohan BV on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    Read about Leh Innerline Permits are back from DOW. how likely is Leh DC office operating on SUNDAY!.
    we have planned ride in june, where we reach leh on Sat and Sunday is a break day before we start our ride to Nubra valley on Monday. now for Permits, we need to re-plan. can you suggest please.

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