There is no doubt that Leh – Ladakh is one of the top most places on Priority for any traveler or tourist who loves traveling. The barren yet beautiful wide landscapes of Ladakh are something unforgettable and one cannot just resist seeing them live after getting the glimpse of them anywhere. However, in order to visit various places in Ladakh you need Inner Line Permits as most of these places are near the Inner Line of LAC or LOC which is close to international borders. These places include Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri, Nubra Valley including Turtuk, Drok Pa Villages of Dah Hanu, Inner Changthang Region which includes Hanle, Chusul, Tsaga, etc.. Ladakh inner line permits are issued from DC office located in Leh and hence, once needs to first visit Leh to get these permits and then carry on journey in rest of the Ladakh after obtaining these permits. Without the permits, you will not be allowed to visit these places and Army/ITBP checkposts at various locations en-route these place will send you back in case you do not have permits to pass them.
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, when and where asked from you and that will just acts as permit for you 🙂 🙂 …
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.
Couple of years back I wrote an article Inner Line Permits for Leh – Ladakh which explain out the complete process for applying these permits, places to mention on permits for Ladakh and download of the Inner Line Permit Form as well as Sample Application Letter you need to attach to the permit form. It has been sometime now and there are few things that have been changed or updated. If I look closely, then not many things have been changed, only few here and there. In this article I will detail out these changes that has happened in the last few years to keep the information updated including the updated download of Inner Line Permit Form as well as updated Sample Application Letter template. Please note that original article linked above has also been updated with this information as well and has all the information you need to understand more about Ladakh Inner Line Permits.
Updates on Process & Places
- In addition to the permits costs of Rs 20 per day per person and Rs 10 which is charged per person one time towards Red Cross Fund, now you have to pay Rs 200 per person one time as a part of environment fees as well. This fees is either given at DC Office or someone entering from Khaltsi from Srinagar – Leh side or Upshi at Manali – Leh side. They hand over a post card detailing out the number and you can show that post card in DC Office to let them know that you have already paid it at Khaltsi or Upshi.
- There is a special Student fees too which is just Rs 20 one time and students can avail it by showing their school/college identity card.
- Now a group of 2 or more foreigners can apply for permits. Earlier at least 4 persons were required to apply for permits but not the minimum group has been decreased to 2 for foreigners.
- Foreigners with permits are now allowed to even visit Man – Merak villages along Pangong Tso and till Loma post where you take right towards Hanle but Hanle is still inaccessible to them.
- Both Indians and Foreigners with permits can now travel beyond Turtuk to Pachathang and Tyakshi Villages in Nubra Valley. Permits are now also issued for Kargil – Khangral – Chiktan & Dah – Garkone – Darchik – Batalik – Slimo – Kargil routes in the Kargil and Batalik sectors as well.
- Foreigners are allowed to even visit Man and Merak villages too along Pangong Tso.
- Process: The process of applying the permits is slightly changed. Now, majority of times you need not go yourself in person to DC or ADC to get the permits signed or stamped rather in the room on the left hand side as you enter DC office, the person in charge will stamp the permit for you. Only in special case you can ask the clerk to permit you to meet DC or ADC and get your permits approved from them in person. Otherwise as per new process, you submit the form at first desk, pay the permit fees at next desk, then pay the red cross fee at next desk and finally pay the environment fees at last desk which hand over the permit to you after stamping it. You make the photocopies of this stamped permit to hand over to different checkposts.
Updates on Permits for Chusul & Hanle or Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri
- Sometimes permits for Pangong Tso – Chusul – Tsaga – Loma – Hanle / Tso Moriri are provided by DC Office BUT unfortunately once you reach Chusul or Loma or Mahe then you are not allowed to pass through by army posts. So, even if you have the permits do not consider 100% that you will be able to travel over Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri direct route via Chusul – Tsaga villages 🙁 …
- Now, beyond Loma towards Hanle, you are not supposed to carry an electronic item for taking pictures including cameras. May be phones they might allow but digital cameras are checked at Loma checkpost before you are allowed to pass through to Hanle and you are supposed to submit them at Loma checkpost or hide them deep in your bags 😀 … However, please pay respect to the security concerns and only take pictures of non-sensitive areas which are just subject to tourists standpoint like Hanle Monastery 🙂
Updated Download Form & Sample Application Letter
The permit form has been updated and now there is a template available for request application letter too to ease out things. You can download the updated formats at the links below
- You can download the updated permit form at the link: Inner Line Permit Form and Application Letter
- You can download the updated sample application at the: Inner Line Permit Form and Application Letter
- 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
If you happen to have any other update that I have missed but has been added in the last couple of years, please feel free to comment below or suggest. If you have any queries or doubts related to Ladakh Inner Line Permits for Leh – Ladakh then as well please feel free to comment below or start a new topic in Ladakh Itinerary Advice forum in DoW Community.