In the last few years, the tourist outburst has left no place untouched Leh – Ladakh. The raw nature in Leh – Ladakh used to offer peace, excitement, and adventure, which travelers once cherished. The luxury resorts and high-end camps have started taking the charm out of the Leh Ladakh trip nowadays. As a result, more and more people have started looking for the other options of travel including the Spiti Valley trip.
Spiti Valley, also known as the middle land, has become a popular alternative as it offers the raw adventure and nature to those who are looking for such trips. There are a lot of common things between Spiti Valley and Ladakh, but I will talk about it on some other day. In this article today, I will talk about some common mistakes people commit while making a Spiti Valley trip.
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Let's quickly dive into the details:
Top 14 Mistakes You May Commit on Your Spiti Valley Trip
Enough stress has been put on the importance of acclimatization and AMS for making a memorable trip to Spiti Valley. BUT, still, many other factors drive people towards believing in its importance in real life. I will try to make you understand some of such common factors or mistakes for making a successful trip to Spiti Valley.
Mistakes #1 to #8
I have already talked about the 9 Mistakes People Commit on a Ladakh Trip. If you haven’t read this article yet, I will first advise you to read it and then come to this article. Well, 8 out of 9 mistakes mentioned in the linked article are equally applicable for a Spiti Valley trip except the one of Khardung La pass.
As a brief reminder in the Spiti valley context, here are these 8 tips to consider before you plan the Spiti valley trip.
- I am very fit and have a good body, I do not need acclimatization
- I have done many high altitude trips, I do not need acclimatization now
- I have clocked 100,000 Miles, I will breeze through the roads in Spiti Valley
- I never plan my trips and I will not plan for my Spiti valley trip too
- I can follow his WRONG plan because he had no issues on his Spiti trip
- I have done 800 KMs drive in a day, so, 400 KMs in a day in Spiti is nothing in for me
- I can take my infant baby because I have seen many pictures where people took theirs too
- I can drink alcohol because there have never been issues
I am not going to repeat the details of these common mistakes made for any high altitude place in this article again. You can refer them in the linked article with the context of Spiti Valley instead of Leh Ladakh. I will rather continue on these mistakes in this article from number 9 and share with you those specifically related to a Spiti Valley trip.
9. Planning a trip to Spiti from Manali side
Well, it is OK to make a trip to Spiti Valley from Manali side, and I have also outlined the 5 Reasons to Travel Spiti Valley from Manali Route. But, in my honest opinion, it is not the right way to make the trip to Spiti Valley. You tend to gain very high altitude too quickly by making a trip to Kaza from Manali side.
In case, you are doing a full circuit from Manali – Kaza – Kinnaur – Shimla, it is always in the best interest of your health to start from Shimla side and end at Manali side after covering both Kinnaur and Spiti Valley. It helps you adjust to the high altitude because of a gradual increase in altitude. This route will help you enjoy your road trip to Spiti Valley in a much-relaxed manner.
10. Sleeping second night at Chandratal lake
It is pretty enticing to have such a wonder of nature called the Moonlake – Chandratal, just two days away from Delhi. I know anyone can get fooled into making such a three days trip to Chandratal from Delhi and in fact, I made the same mistake about ten years ago. However, it was that mistake only which gave birth to the Devil On Wheels Travel platform, including this website, so that I can help others not to make such mistakes. So, learn from the mistakes I did and enjoy your trips in a better manner.
Chandratal lake is located at an altitude of 14000 feet, which is termed as very high altitude, and no human body can get acclimatized to such an altitude in one night. Sleeping at Manali does not help in acclimatization. So you are pretty much trying to sleep at Chandratal Lake at 14000 feet without any acclimatization at all. Many people get away with it, some get sleepless nights, some with headaches, some in Kaza hospital and some canceling their trips further.
So, it is in your best interest to make a night stay at Chandratal lake while coming back to Manali after completing the Spiti Valley trip.
11. I have done a Ladakh trip in my sedan, Spiti Valley will be a breeze for me
Well, guys, you may have done a Kashmir trip or Leh Ladakh trip in your hatchback or sedan. However, the road from Manali to Kaza, especially between Gramphu to Batal or Chandratal, is altogether a different ballgame.
The road from Gramphu to Batal is more like driving on a riverbed with multiple water crossings and some like Dorni Nalla, Chota Dhara, Bada Dhara, etc.. which can be very nasty on a given day. There are big rocks beneath them as well, which you need to negotiate in these water crossings. Be sure of the car you are taking and experience you have driving in such terrain; otherwise, opt for a local taxi.
You can get connected directly to some drivers in Himachal or Spiti Valley or Kinnaur Valley at the link List of Taxi Drivers for Spiti Valley & Kinnaur Valley. These local drivers can come and pick you up from Manali / Shimla / Delhi / Chandigarh too, of course with the price of the pickup as well.
12. Missing on Langza, Hikkim and Komic Circuit
The majority of people who make the trip to Spiti Valley don’t know more than Tabo, Kaza, Ki, Kibber, and Chandratal. However, one of the most picturesque circuits in Spiti Valley, in my opinion, is Langza – Hikkim – Komic.
This circuit very much resembles the views you are used to seeing in Leh Ladakh. However, the valleys are a bit narrow, and mountains may not be as daunting as they look in Ladakh. However, the views will not disappoint you a bit !! You can read more about them at Langza – Komic – Hikkim – Local Sightseeing in Kaza
13. Assuming Lahaul Valley same as Spiti Valley
Lahaul Valley is altogether a different region with different views than what Spiti Valley has to offer. Both Lahaul & Spiti Valley often termed together and most people get confused between them.
Technically speaking, Kunzum Pass connects Lahaul Valley with Spiti Valley and by jurisdiction wise, if I remember correctly, Spiti Valley is up to Chatru beyond which Lahaul administration starts. Both are tribal circuits, but Lahaul Valley can be distinguished by names like Keylong, Udaipur, Jispa, Baralacha La Pass, Surajtal Lake, Darcha, etc..
The majority of these places fall on Manali Leh Highway and hence, anyone who has made a trip to Manali – Leh Highway would have experienced them. The scenic beauty perspective is also different between Lahaul and Spiti where Lahaul Valley is more green and living while Spiti Valley is more barren and a cold desert.
14. Running through Spiti Valley trip with just 4-5 days plan
Well, there are so many places in Spiti Valley that they deserve more than 4-5 days. Hence, it is best to make a trip to Spiti Valley when you have at least 9-10 days to make some sense of it. Otherwise, it is nothing more than ticking off a place from your bucket list rather than experiencing what Spiti Valley has to offer.
IF you are still short on time and want to make a trip to Spiti Valley in less number of days, you can refer my article on how to plan a Spiti valley trip in 5-6 days.
I hope this article will prove helpful to you in making your upcoming trip to Spiti Valley a memorable one. I am sure, now that you know about these commons mistakes people make on trips to trans Himalayas, you won’t be repeating them again.
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Planning a trip on rented bike with my wife to Spiti starting 10th September. If any couple wants to tag along, do ping on [email protected]
Thanks for the vivid description. It is a great support and help to travellers.
While lot has been mentioned about Spiti Valley, can you please enumerate places of interest of Lahaul Valley Valley please?
Thanks in advance.
Whether it will be good to go to lahaul and spiti from Manali for 08 days period from 26 september to 23 rd September? I want to travel on bike as solo traveler. Will it be okay in September?
Yes Arvind, it will be good time with cold morning and nights but nothing that is not bearable. Days will be cool to pleasant mostly. You will see wonderful colors in the Spiti Valley
Hey just want to know charges for taxi and driver for spiti valley per day : and what will he best places to visit in 3 days? waiting for ur positive reply
You can get connected directly to some drivers in Himachal or Spiti Valley or Kinnaur Valley at the link: List of Taxi Drivers for Spiti Valley & Kinnaur Valley. These drivers can come and pick you up from Manali / Shimla / Delhi / Chandigarh too, of course with a price of the pickup as well.
The rates of the taxis are about Rs 3200-3500 per day depending on the number of days you plan to travel, more the days, less the price. If you are 2-3 in the group, you can opt for sedan taxi cars as well which charges around Rs 2200 per day.
Otherwise, taxis, in general, are also available on the spot from Shimla or Manali from respective taxi stands. These drivers can help you with finding local stay options too.
For stay options in Kinnaur and Spiti, check the link: Some Good Options of Stays in Spiti Valley / Kinnaur Valley.
i am also looking partners a family with one kid for leh ladakh
Please post a travel Calendar entry from the main menu and look for other entries.
Hello! I am planning a tour of spiti valley from manali in the starting of june.sparing only 4 days for my vacation excluding travelling days can you suggest me initiaries and things to remeber before visiting thankyou in advance
You should read: How to make a trip to Spiti Valley in 6 days?
Hi, I am janki. I am planning to visit spiti valley in end of may 2018. I want to travell it solo. So any guidance for publi transport or anything?
I also need guidance for accomodation and things which should be taken care by me as a solo traveller
i am also planning to visit spiti valley solo traveller,,we can travel together on public transport,,in case you are interested you cam mail on my [email protected]..
Oh wow.. Even I am going to be traveling Spiti from May 23rd to June 3rd with my parents.. so solo family.. 🙂
You can opt for the Himachal Tourism Bus as that is the only straight bus going from Manali to Kaja / Kaza and takes around 8 hours and is depending on the bus reaching Manali the previous day.. Starts early in the morning and you need to buy a ticket on the morning of travel, alternatively, you can start from Shimla – Reckong Peo (night stay) – Tabo (optional night stay) – Kaza
You should opt for Cellone BSNL mobile connection as that is the only connection which works beyond Reckong Peo, and book your accommodation as below:
AirBnB / Oyo until Reckong Peo / Kalpa and opt for Zostel in Kaza. You could also opt for home stays / smaller hotels at various locations as listed in the blog post above..
Do we need to apply for a permit( Private Vehicle) if we go towards Leh via Keylong from Kaza, skipping Manali and Rohtang pass?
No, in that case you do not need any permit
Hello, what about doing spiti circle with two people on bike In September? Thunderbird 350. Our weight is 70+ 110 kg of both.
Pravin, it shall be fine. You may need to get down here and there but overall it is fine. You should read: 5 Tips to Rent Bike in Leh – Ladakh and Ride with Pillion
Last year I started my tour of kinnaur and spiti.valley from shimla-sangla-nako-tabo-kaza-kee-kibber-khardungla-chandratal-manali(1-2-1-1-2-1-1-1) I enjoyed the tour but had some problem in nako I did broke my wrist. But did not feel pain even in kaza I was told that my wrist wAs fine.i was with my family and we enjoyed the whole trip. Although in chd I. Came to know my both bones of wrist were gone and took four. Months.i am planning a road trip this from Srinagar -sonemarg-kar gill-leh-Nubia-pangong-leh-tsoromiri-sarchu-manali but this tour is costing me too expensive 1 or more than one please suggest
Are you planning this trip alone as a solo traveller? And brother, I am really sorry to hear about your wrists, I am happy to know that you are recovered now fully.
with my family
me my wife and 10 year old son
Well, in that case best will be to book the seats in tourist shared taxis if you do not find travel partners. There are lots of flyers which people put at cafes, dine-ins, restaurants, travel agent desks/shops/whiteboards wanting to share the taxis for different trips within Ladakh. Even travel agent organize such shared taxis trip as well but charge a little higher about Rs 200-300 more than it would ideally cost. So, in the worst case, you can always go back to them and book a seat for yourself.
Firstly thank you for this useful information 🙂
I am planning to go to Spiti with my 2 friends is Honda Amaze Diesel on 24th August 2017
Route will be:
Delhi- Shimla- Sarahan- Sangla- Chitkul- Nako- Tabo- Kaza- Chandrataal- Spiti- Hikkim- Langza- Kunzum La Pass- Rohatang Pass- Manali- Delhi.
Just need to ask, are the road conditions fine during this period?
thank you in advance for your response.
Well, Jatin, in case it has predictions of heavy rains, I will recommend not traveling to Kinnaur or Spiti valley. Do read: 10 Tips for a Trip to Spiti Valley in Monsoons
I am planning to go on Spiti Valley trip next month (2nd week), my major concern are – is the climb very steep for i20 petrol (82bhp with 115NM) ? (I don’t want to be in a position where I am unable to climb up due to low power). we would also have Fortuner, Abarth and Creta for this trip
our current schedule is below
Day 1 : Mumbai – Jaipur
Day 2 : Jaipur – Narkanda
Day 3 : Narkanda – Sangla – Chitkul – Sangla
Day 4 : Sangla – Nako – Tabo
Day 5: Tabo – Dhankar – Mud
Explore the Pin Valley
Day 6 : Mud – Kaza – Langza – Hikkim – Komic – Hikkim – Langza – Ki – Kibber
Day 7 : Kibber – Gete – Trashigang – Losar – Chandratal
Day 8 : Chandratal – Batal – Manali
Day 9 : Manali – Rewari
Day 10 : Rewari – Vadodara
Day 11 : Vadodara – Pune
Imran, you will not feel powerless but you will wish you had higher ground clearance for sure. So, in case you have an option of higher ground clearance vehicle better take it for the trip.
me and my husband are planning spiti trip starting from chandigarh from 7th august 16 th august. we are hiring a scorpio and looking for travel partners. plz msg us on watsapp on 9449055771.its my husbands number.
You can post a travel calendar entry from the main menu and explore others too.
I’m planning for the Spiti valley in first week of July from chandigarh. August is monsoon and i dont prefer traveling then. Iam traveling with couple of my friends. and if we are ok on the dates and we can travel together. even i prefer Scorpio.
My contact number – 9886177180
It’s highly recommended that you should not travel in sedan or hatchback in spiti valley. Upto Kaza you can drive easily but from Kaza to Manali surely underbelly going to hit in sedan or hatchback. I was complete my trip from Jaipur- delhi- shimla- kaza- manali- delhi- Jaipur in Grand i10, but I was lucky escaped b/w Kaza and Manali (while passing through water stream my radiator carrier badly hit from bottom and broke but luckily it stay at her place and I am able to drive my vehicle safely to Jaipur, thanks to God I not stuck) Hence its my advice you should leave your i20 at Delhi or Chandigarh and hire Innova/ scorpio etc for your trip.
I was exactly looking for a guide like this. Now it will be easy for me to satisfy my client needs.
Again, Thanks for the Great Guide 🙂