5 Reasons to Travel Spiti Valley from Manali Route

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Traveling to Spiti Valley in Himachal Pradesh can be done in two ways. You can travel to Spiti Valley from Shimla – Kinnaur side, or you can take the shorter route to reach Spiti Valley from Manali side. Many people opt to do the entire circuit; that is, they will enter Spiti Valley from either Shimla or Manali and then exit from the other side. Planning in this manner makes a perfectly balanced Spiti road trip.

Q2. Why travel to Spiti Valley from Manali side? [5 Reasons Why – Manali Kaza Road]

I have already shared detailed articles on how to plan a trip to Spiti Valley via Kinnaur and Spiti Valley via Manali. These two articles got into the details of step by step travel guide to reach Spiti Valley and talked about what places to visit, where to stay, details on the itinerary, where to eat or when to visit Spiti, etc.. However, I did not detail about which route you should prefer over others in case required.

Why travel to Spiti Valley from Manali route?

If I have to compare these two routes to Spiti with each other, then there are certain definitive advantages and disadvantages of traveling by each one of them. Although most people prefer to do the circuit only, entering from Shima – Kinnaur to Spiti and exit via Manali.

In the last article, I talked about 5 Reasons to Travel Spiti Valley from Shimla – Kinnaur Route, looking at the advantages you can get when traveling this long treacherous route to Spiti Valley. In this article, I will talk about the top five reasons to travel Spiti Valley via Manali side 🙂

Why Travel to Spiti Valley from Manali Side?
Why Travel to Spiti Valley from Manali Side?

Download your FREE high-resolution version pdf copy of this infographic guide to answer why you should travel to Spiti Valley from Manali side?. If, you liked it and found it helpful, please feel free to share it with your family and friends to help them too.

1. Lesser Time to Reach Spiti Valley

When you travel to Spiti Valley from Manali side, the time taken to reach Kaza from Chandigarh or Delhi is much lesser than compared to traveling to Spiti from Kinnaur side. Distance-wise, the comparison is not that significant with the distance of Delhi to Kaza via Shimla – Kinnaur is 791 km. In contrast, the distance of Delhi to Kaza via Manali is 772 km. So, a mere 19 km difference only.

However, when you travel to Spiti via Manali, you reach Manali in one night by overnight Volvo. The next day you can travel to Kaza from Manali in a day. Hence, within two days you will reach Spiti from Manali side. However, it takes at least two days to reach Kalpa / Sangla in general, and then you travel to Tabo or Kaza on the third day. So, it takes three days to reach Spiti Valley from Kinnaur side.

Road to Spiti Valley from Manali - Buried Under Snow
Road to Spiti Valley from Manali – Buried Under Snow

You can do Delhi to Manali 570 km easily in 12 hrs of a road trip because of better and wide roads. Then the next day, the remaining 202 km can be done to reach Kaza by evening. However, as discussed in the previous article, you have to brave the AMS when traveling to Kaza from Manali because the altitude difference is abrupt when we travel this route as apparent in my distance-altitude graphs below.

But, if you are short on the number of days and the road to Spiti Valley from Manali is open, then better travel to Spiti from Manali to save the day and also fatigue levels. You can always descend to Tabo from Manali to somewhat control the AMS symptoms by starting about 2 hours early from Manali.

Road to Spiti Valley from Shimla Altitude - Distance Graph
Hindustan – Tibet Road Altitude & Distance Graph
Road to Spiti Valley via Manali Altitude - Distance Graph
Road to Spiti Valley via Manali Altitude – Distance Graph

2. Less Susceptible to Landslides

I understand that when you travel from Manali to Spiti Valley, you have to cross one of the worst roads of the world, which is from Gramphu to Kunzum Pass. The road between Gramphu and Kunzum Pass is very treacherous but an experience plus beauty in itself. Moreover, although the water crossings are more common on this route to Spiti Valley from Manali side, it is less susceptible to major landslides as compared to the roads in Kinnaur Valley, especially in monsoons.

On Manali to Kaza road, the major hurdle is, in general, slush around Rohtang Pass, about 10 km on the Northern side of Rohtang Pass towards Gramphu. Along with it, some nasty water crossing between Kunzum Pass and Gramphu can be a major concern as well.

If you leave early from Manali, these water crossings are manageable, but in Kinnaur Valley, monsoons wreak havoc, and there are many zones where constant shooting stones and landslides happen. Some of the major ones being Malling Nalla ahead of Nako and some stretches between Reckong Peo to Nako.

On the other hand, this is a time window when the route from Manali to Kaza is also open. Hence, you can use it to reach Spiti Valley. You can enter the rain shadow region as quickly as possible, of course, by risking the rains for a couple of days up to Manali mainly. The risk is almost a day less than traveling to Spiti Valley from Kinnaur – Shimla route.

I know this is arguable. However, I will still prefer going to Spiti Valley from Manali in rainy seasons as compared to Shimla’s side on any day if I have to travel. Otherwise, I do not travel in the mountains in the monsoon season.

Spiti Valley from Manali - HRTC Bus Timetable
Spiti Valley from Manali – HRTC Bus Timetable

3. Ease of Accessibility

The route from Manali to Spiti Valley is also easily accessible using public transport when compared to the route to Spiti Valley from Shimla or Kinnaur. I do not mean that you cannot make a trip to Spiti Valley by public transport from Shimla side but what I mean is that in comparison the connectivity is better and more accessible on Delhi to Manali to Kaza route.

There are daily buses that run between Manali and Delhi. One can take an overnight bus to reach Manali from Delhi. You can also take a Volvo run by HRTC or HPTDC to Manali from Delhi, and then HRTC buses ply buses on Kullu – Manali – Rohtang Pass – Kunzum Pass – Kaza route.

Is there any bus from Manali to Kaza?

Two HRTC buses run between Manali and Kaza every morning, as soon as the road to Spiti Valley via Manali gets open in the season, mostly in June. These buses run from Kullu to Kaza via Manali, and it reaches Manali around 4.45 AM and leaves at 5.00 AM. Ticket to Kaza will cost you only about INR 300 approximately per person.

Furthermore, if you want to reach Tabo, there is an HRTC bus that runs from Kaza at 2 PM to Chango, which can drop you to Tabo for the night stay on Day 2. Sleeping at Tabo than Kaza helps in better acclimatization.

However, when compared, the buses are not that frequent when you enter Spiti from Kinnaur, and even Reckong Peo has a daily bus from Chandigarh. Hence, from Delhi, you need to hop onto three buses to reach Kaza from Kinnaur side and Chandigarh at least two buses.

Spiti Valley from Manali - Road Conditions
Spiti Valley from Manali – Road Conditions

4. Cheaper in Budget

Now, since we know that Spiti Valley is easily accessible from the Manali side by public transport, using HRTC buses, one can reach Kaza in the cheapest means with an overnight halt at just Manali. Plus it takes one extra day to travel to Spiti from Shimla side as compare to traveling from Manali side to Spiti.

While coming from Shimla to Spiti Valley, you will end up paying more for transport plus you will be staying on the route for two nights, which itself will increase the accommodation and food expenditure as well.

Hence, this route to Spiti Valley is cheaper as well when compared with the route from Shimla – Kinnaur side because you stay one night less, travel one night less and pay for one night less on Manali to Spiti route.

5. Rohtang Pass and Kunzum Pass

If you are one of those like me, who is fascinated by crossing over various high altitude passes in the Himalayas, then the preference between the route has to be the road to Spiti Valley from Manali.

On this route, you will be crossing Rohtang Pass (3980 Mtrs) first to enter Lahaul Valley from Kullu Valley and then you will cross Kunzum Pass (4551 Mtrs) to enter Spiti Valley from Lahaul Valley. Traveling over these mighty passes of Himachal is a kind of feeling in itself!!

Hence, do not miss the opportunity of stopping at Rohtang Pass and Kunzum Pass to take a photograph. At Kunzum Pass, do pay respect at Kunzum Devi temple by driving around it in the circuit in the clockwise direction to pay the respect before moving into Spiti Valley.

Spiti Valley from Manali - Road Conditions
Spiti Valley from Manali – Road Conditions

Still Confused??

Well, if you are still confused on which route to choose to travel to Spiti Valley, I will recommend that you wait and take some more days off to travel the full circuit of Spiti Valley, that is, starting the trip to Spiti from Shimla side and ending at Manali side.

Don’t have time to read the full article? Check this less than 3-minute video on DevilOnWheels YouTube Channel on why you may travel Spiti Valley from Manali side. If you like my video, please do not forget to SUBSCRIBE to my YouTube channel.

Why Travel Spiti Valley from Manali side

Conclusion

I hope this short series of two articles on both the routes to Spiti Valley will help all of you who are in a bit of confusion choosing among these two routes, i.e., Spiti Valley from Manali side v/s Spiti Valley from Shimla – Kinnaur side.

Now, you can weigh the advantages of both these routes and decide which one suits you the best given the circumstances, which direction to take if interested in a complete circuit, etc.. to make a road trip to Spiti Valley.

Have a travel question?? You can follow me on Instagram and subscribe to my YouTube channel to ask your travel questions in a direct message on Instagram or comments on my YouTube videos.

Have you ever been to Spiti Valley through Hindustan Tibet Highway or via Manali? If yes, please share your viewpoints, suggestions or inputs as comments below. It will help other fellow travelers to plan their own journeys to Spiti as well.

Are you planning to go to Spiti Valley via Hindustan – Tibet Highway or Manali? If yes, please feel free to ask any questions or doubts you have regarding your plan in the comments section below. I will be happy to reply and discuss them with you. Looking forward to your responses 🙂

If you know your friends or family are planning a trip to Spiti, do share this article with them to help them make a memorable trip.

Are you looking for the CUSTOMIZED TOURS?? Get in touch with our our handpicked & trusted Destination Specialists from the Himalayas who offer SPECIAL DISCOUNTED RATES to all the readers/followers of the Devil On Wheels website.


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Helping travelers, backpackers & tourists in planning memorable trips to the Himalayas - Smartly, Safely, Responsibly and Economically. I am in love with Spreading Smiles in the Himalayas through DoW Causes. You can read more about me in detail by checking out About Me section from the main menu.

388 Comments

  1. Comments section gets closed in 90 days. You can follow my YouTube Channel or follow me on Instagram to ask your travel questions. I also conduct a weekly Q&A session every Saturday evening on Instagram, so see you there !!

  2. Tanya Singla on

    Hi Dheeraj Thnks for your feedback..
    Just wanted to know that is manali to spiti valley route is open now …we are planning to leave on 25th June ..bcoz I have heard that Rohtang pass is closed…so plzz if you let us know..it will be of great help

  3. sachin dhama on

    Hi dheeraj,

    I m planning to visit spiti Valley at june End .
    I have couple of queries:-
    1.What is the process of taking permit to go to spiti from Manali?how much time will it take to get it done.
    Can it be done online or in advance?
    2.We would be reaching manali by 29 th morning and coming back on 3 rd to chandigarh.
    We have our own car and 5 days to explore .What are the places we can cover ?

    • Hi Sachin,

      1. You need to show your car RC, PUC and your DL at SDM office in Manali to get the permit. Depends on the queue on that day. It cannot be done online this year
      2. You have very very less days in hand to cover Spiti valley.

  4. Hi Dheeraj

    Thank you for great write ups, i have been reading them constantly as, i am planning a trip to manali region with my 4 year old and my wife. I wanted to go to Leh from Srinagar, however, that doesn’t seem possible because while calculating the amount of days + waking and travelling hours my son won’t be able to take that much stress as of now.
    Can you give me good option around Manali (i don’t just want to do manali, though i haven’t been there either myself) where my son can enjoy more, he is an avid snow and animal lover.
    We can do about 7-8 days with good amount of sleep and rest sans traveling.

    thanks for your help!!!
    ps: shall be self driving from delhi in my car creta

  5. Hi Dheeraj, loved your blog. Me and my friends are planning to leave for Kaza from Delhi. I want to ask is it safe to travel with girls here? and will Manali-Kaza route be open? I am planning to leave on 11th June.

  6. Hello!!

    We are planning a 15 day trip to Ladakh, Lahaul and Spiti.
    We need help to plan our travel from Leh to Kaza.
    Please suggest how we can commute [bus?] between these two places.

    • Poonam, there is a direct bus that runs from Leh to Keylong everyday and then from Keylong to Kaza bus leaves at 5 AM from Keylong for Kaza everyday

      • Vikas sharma. on

        Hi Dheeraj.
        I m from chd. Is there any kind of vehicle permit required via spiti. Can we cover upto keylong in two days from chd via spiti. If not then how much days I needed ? V r 3 person. Every body can drive so driving is nt an issue. V just cover sangla,chitkul,sangla,chd 375 kms in single day with single driver on 14th may 16. Just to avoid permit issue I m proffering via spiti. No sight seen. I can cover spiti some other time. B.coz our Tucson is 11 yrs old.

  7. Ankita Singh on

    Hey Dheeraj,

    Awesome blogs. I am planning to go Spiti, around second week of June. Me and my friend are planning to start our journey from Chandigarh. I read your post of both the routes for Spiti and I am totally convinced with the Manali – Spiti. But I am still confused with all the names and I do not know how to plan an itinerary for a week. As we have only a week time. Is it possible? Most important question: Will the Manali – Spiti route will be open during second week of June. Our dates are mostly like starting from Chandigarh on 10th June and coming back by 18th June. Also if you can suggest Hotels or places to stay. We are on budget travel 🙂

    Please help 🙂 Thanks in advance 😀

  8. Anjali Jain on

    Hi,

    I am travelling to Kaza via Manali from 28th May…What is the possibility of the roads and the buses to be available that time?

  9. Hi dheeraj,

    we are planning 5 day trip from manali to spiti from june 1 to june 5.Please let me know if the roads would be open at that time .

  10. Hi Dheeraj,

    I’ve to say that you & the whole DOW team is doing a tremendous job of helping all. After doing lot of search on the internet for weeks & this is the best site for travelling to Leh/Spiti. I’m doing a Road trip from Mumbai in Duster 4X2 from 25th July (Mumbai-Jaipur-Mashobra) I plan cover Spiti & Leh starting from Shimla as we are staying at Mashobra for 3 days(27th to 30th july). I’ve 20 to 22 days for this whole trip.

    I need bit help & suggestion on few things.
    1. As i am starting from Shimla, I am still not sure which places i must see, where to halt for night on route? I prefer home stay if possible. Can you please plan a itinerary for me to follow. We are also carrying camping gear in the car.
    2.How is the weather? Lot of rain? I was told mostly its rain shadow in Spiti.
    3. Are 20 days enough for this whole trip. I doubt it. I plan to exit from Srinagar.

    • You can check the below plan and fit in Mashorba in place of Sarahan.

      Day 1 | Chandigarh/Ambala – Narkanda – Sarahan
      Day 2 | Sarahan – Rakcham/Sangla/Chitkul
      Day 3 | Rakcham/Sangla/Chitkul – Nako – Geyu Mummy – Tabo
      Day 4 | Tabo – Dhangkar – Dhangkar Lake – Pin Valley – Kaza
      Day 5 | Kaza Rest and Local Sightseeing
      — Ki, Kibber, Gette, Tashigang
      Day 6 | Kaza – Hikkim, Komik, Langza circuit – Kaza
      Day 7 | Kaza – Sissu / Keylong, leave early in the day
      Day 8 | Keylong/Jispa – Leh
      — Leave Keylong/Jispa early next morning, say by 4/5 AM types, so that you reach Leh in the evening.
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 9 | Leh Local Sightseeing + Acclimatization
      — To know the about the places to visit check the link: Travel Guide for Local Sightseeing of Leh Town in Ladakh
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 10 | Leh – Khardung La – Diskit – Hunder
      — Head for Nubra Valley and stay overnight at Hunder / Diskit
      — On the way enjoy a cup of soup at Highest Motorable Pass (as claimed) Khardung La
      — Diskit has monasteries with tallest lord Buddha statue and Hunder has sand dunes and bacterian camel safari

      Day 11 | Hunder / Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Sumur – Khardung La – Leh
      — Sumur has a famous monastery to check out and Panamik has hot water springs
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 12 | Leh – Hemis Monastery – Pangong Tso Lake
      — Cover either of Hemis, Thicksey and Shey on the go towards Pangong Tso
      — Overnight at Pangong Tso (Spangmik or Lukung)

      Day 13 | Pangong Tso Lake – Thicksey Monastery – Shey Palace – Leh
      — Cover either of Hemis, Thicksey and Shey on return to Leh
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 14 | Leh – Tso Moriri via Chumathang
      — Cover Karzok Monastery
      — Overnight at Karzok or Tso Moriri
       
      Day 15 | Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Debring (Manali – Leh Highway starts) – Taglang La – Upshi – Leh
      — Come back via Tso Kar and Manali – Leh Highway to Leh
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 16 | Rest day at Leh to enjoy local culture and some shopping
      — Overnight at Leh

      Day 17 | Leh – Lamayuru – Kargil
      — Cover Mulbekh Maitrey, Lamayuru Moanstery, Lunar Landscapes
      — On the way you can also see Gurudwara Pather Sahib, Magnetic Hills, Confluence at Nimmu
      — Overnight at Kargil

      Day 18 | Kargil – Drass – Zozi La – Sonamarg – Srinagar
      — Enjoy the vistas enroute
      — Have late drunch meal at Sonamarg
      — Overnight at Srinagar

      Day 19 | Srinagar – Jammu
      — Overnight at Jammu

      Day 20 | Jammu – Ambala – Delhi
      — Back Home

  11. Dheeraj, read through almost all your posts in regards to Delhi – Kaza tour and have a lot of knowledge on the subject now.
    We (with my 2 children, 11 and 15 years) want to travel to the region mid June, and were thinking about doing it from Manali (Delhi to Manali – Volvo and then hired taxi). Have been fascinated by these high altitude passes. Also as you said, lesser on budget and the no. of days involved.
    1.Your comments have put me in a doubt, as to whether or not the route will be open or feasible at this point of time.
    2. Also the AMS. Though we have been to hills a lot, never to this altitude.
    3. Would also like to know if Chandratal would be possible at that point of time (we are not much of trekkers. a km or two is OK though)
    4. How about the phone connectivity?

    • Hello Nalini,

      1. Route shall be open by mid of June this year from Manali to Kaza
      2. AMS will always be a factor which you cant negate while traveling from Manali to Kaza. That is why it is prefered to travel from Kinnaur side
      3. Chandratal shall be possible too this year, please do it while coming back from Spiti not while going to Spiti
      4. Phone Connectivity will be there from Losar to Kaza and around Kaza/Tabo but only BSNL/MTNL. Rest all operators will be dead once you cross Rohtang PAss and reach Gramphu to start the road to Spiti Valley

  12. Hi guys

    We are travelling Spiti Valley in End June

    Do you guys have any contact of reliable person who arranges car with driver ?
    Please share name and number or email id

    • You can get connected directly to some drivers in 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 pickup as well.

      The rates of the taxis are about Rs 3000-3500 per day depending upon the number of days you plan to travel, more the days, less the price.

      Otherwise, taxis in general are also available on the spot from Shimla or Manali from respective taxi stands

  13. Hi Dheeraj,

    Great work you are doing here. I really appreciate the efforts that u put in.
    I am planning to take a trip with 2 of my friends to spiti valley. We plan to hire a SUV from delhi n drive Delhi – Manali – Spiti – Shimla – Delhi. And we plan to leave on 29th April’16 for about 8-9 days.
    Pls let me know about your thoughts about it and I’ll be more than glad to have inputs from you.
    Thnx Man n keep the good work flowing !!!

  14. Kapil Saraswat on

    Hello Dheeraj,
    I read all your post over here and found them very helpful.

    I am planning with my family of 4 and one another family of 4 persons where 4 are adults of age 38-42 and 4 kids of age 8-12 to visit Spiti Valley in May mid this year.

    I would like to take a Scorpio or a TUV via self driven option. Last year I visited with same passengers to Delhi-Dharamshala-McLeodGanj-Palampur-Baijnath-Delhi in self driven Scorpio where I drive almost all the way.

    I need your valuable input for following items:

    My Plan is as follows:
    Day 1 – New Delhi to Chail :: Rest in Chail and local sight seeing
    Day 2 – Chail to Narkand – – local sight seeing
    Day 2 – Narkand to Rampur Bushahr :: Rest in Rampur Bushahr and local sight seeing
    Day 3 – Rampur Bushahr To Kalpa, Reckong Peo :: Rest in Reckong Peo and local sight seeing
    Day 4 – Kalpa, Reckong Peo To Kaza :: Rest in Kaza and local sight seeing
    Day 5 in Kaza Only and local sight seeing.
    Day 6 – Kaza To Lahul Valley To Manali :: Rest in Manali
    Day 7 Local Sight Seeing in Manali
    Day 8 Manali to New Delhi

    I request you to please view our itenory and provide your valuable feedback.
    Also advice,
    1. Any issues that we can face with kids or ourselfs.
    2. Can I drive all the way with one more person who can drive also with me.
    3. Any precautions that we need to take.

    Thanks in Advance
    Kapil Saraswat

    • Hello Kapil,

      I will suggest you following plan if you want to make the full circuit

      Day 1 – New Delhi to Narkanda
      Day 2 – Narkanda to Sarahan
      Day 3 – Sarahan to Kalpa
      Day 4 – Kalpa to Nako to Tabo
      Day 5 – Tabo – Dhangkar – Kaza
      Day 6 in Kaza Only and local sight seeing.
      Day 7 – Kaza To Manali, leave by 7 AM for sure to reach in time before dark to Manali
      Day 8 Manali to New Delhi

  15. ALOK RANJAN PANDA. on

    Hi DHEERAJ I want to go with my Family to Manali, Rohatang Pass, Kaza, Surya Tal, Chandra Tal, Shimla,Dalhousie in the month of June 1st week so please give me a convenient itinerary and also is it preferable with family and what should be the clothes please send me to my mail.

    • Hi Alok,

      These are too many places and in different directions all over Himachal. How many dys you planning toc over them. Chandratal will not be possible during that time.

  16. Spiti was an unforgettable experience and ever since I dream of going back one day.
    In 2012 my family and I did this tour: Delhi – Chandigarh – Mandi – Manali – Kaza (Rangrik) – Leh – Delhi with a driver and guide. The original plan was to do the tour from Shimla, with a trekking from Kalpa to Mud, but we decided to go from Rhotang La. We were staying in Rangrik for a week and doing day tours from there.
    Next time I would definitely take the Hindustan-Tibet route because we lost a few days due to high altitude illness. I almost collapsed on Kunzum La and my son had to go to hospital in Kaza next day. Of course we’re not used to this, living in Holland below sea level. 🙂
    I just discovered this site, very interesting. We were thinking about going to the Himalayas again, maybe travelling from Shimla southeast direction of Jim Corbet and Nepal. Is it difficult to travel through the mountains of Uttarakhand, or is it better to take a more comfortable road via Chandigar / Haridwar?

    • Jeroen, yeah, Spiti is always such an adventure no matter how many times you travel. And yeah, it does hit badly when AMS strikes you and going by Manali elevates the chances to max. Glad all were set fine and yeah hospital in Kaza is a big help.

      Thank you for liking the DoW 🙂 … Before answering it, I will like to understand your motive to travel from Shimla side? Do you want to explore the Pabbar Valley? How many days you have in hand and where do you land in Delhi or Chandigarh?

      • Thank you Dheeraj, I was thinking about maybe travelling from Delhi tot Shimla – Spiti – Manali – and then head east direction Nepal (maybe even Mount Kailash from Simikot) in approx 1 month. Maybe it’s just tooo much.
        I can’t find much information about travelling in Uttarakhand, I was just curious… BTW, I don’t think it’s possible to pass the Tibetan border from India?
        regards

        • No Jeroen, it is not possible to pass Tibetan border from India. Uou can travel into Uttarakhand and from there move into Nepal from various exit points in Uttarakhand like Dharchula, near Pithoragarh, near Tanakpur.

          If you are taregtting Nepal, you will have to travel in Kumaon and this can act as good starting point: Kumaon, Uttarakhand – Most Common Itinerary

  17. Mousumi Saha Biswa on

    Dheeraj I read all the above questions and observed how passionately patiently you have given the response . Our group is all women team 5 of us . We plan to start in 3rd week of June for 8-10 days for lahaul – Spiti valley .
    Would need to know :
    1) after Manali what should our location of stay and local sight seeing look plan go about
    2) we plan to take car from Manali or delhi onwards till return to delhi on 9 th day
    3) where should we stay ? In case any recommendations
    4) is the time conducive ?

    Look forward and thanks in advance .

  18. I gone through your report, amazing destination and superb report. I desperatly needed info about Kaza. We are going to Manali-Losar-Kaza on 30 Sept. We will saty a night at Manali and next early morning to Losar. From losar my son will travel to Chandertal by cycle in a group,and after 2 days we will proceed to Kaza. I hav some doubts tobe cleared if u can:
    Manali-Losar in a day is managable??
    I willbe on Mahendra Scorpio but 2wd, is it perfact for this trip
    Can u suggest some hotel or homestay at Losar
    Is it possibe to travel by car till chandertal because I am not a trekking person 🙂 , instead of stay at Losar for waiting of my son I stay at Chandertal if any accomodation there, or I can up-down chandertal if possible by car.
    Thanks in advance and willbe a great help to me and my family.
    Thanks again

    • Hello Surinder ji,

      1. Manali – Losar is quite possible in a day. I will suggest to stay at Batal instead of Losar because Losar is at higher altitude than Batal and may have bad ams issues while sleeping. We have taken even our dzire and altos, so a high gc vehicle will just do great. Not all the way to Chandratal but to the parking spot. From the parking spot it is around 600-700 Mtrs walk.

  19. Dear Dheeraj,

    We (two of us) are driving from Kerala starting 01st Oct in a Honda Brio to Manali. Planning to reach manali on day 6 starting from kerala. We would like to drive till Kaza from manali. Please advise if it is ok to take a Honda brio to manali – kaza road during the first week of october. Also please give an idea about the stops we need to take from Chandigarh to Kaza to avoid AMS. Awating your your reply. Thanks in advance.

    Regards
    Sanju

    • Sanju, it is possible for sure as we have take dzire and altos too. However, we donot love our car more than adventure and that is what you need to do. It will not be that easy from Rohtang Pass to Kaza over Kunzum Pass and tough part of Gramphu to Batal road. You cannot avoid AMS as you are traveling from Manali side and will be reaching Kaza from Manali. IT will happen, the degree of impact of AMS will be different depending upon your body hydration levels and rest you taken from next day.

  20. Anupriya Tyagi on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    Thank you for your detailed post. I am following the posts for a long time now. I have decided to travel to Spiti Valley. Following is my itenary:

    30th Sept : Delhi to Manali Volvo
    1st Oct : Few hours rest. Then Manali to Kaza by Local bus/taxi.

    Travelling Budget: 20,000 for 2 people.

    I wish to reach Spiti by 2nd October and leave by 5th October so that i can be back in Delhi on 6th morning.

    So, could you please let me know the mentioned below:

    1) Road conditions on Manali-Kaza road. ( October 1st week )
    2) Traveling options from Manali to Kaza

    Could you please suggest the best possible itenary for the above mentioned dates ( 30th sept to 6th Oct )

    Thank You
    Anupriya Tyagi

    • Hello Anupriya,

      You should read about AMS and Acclimatization first before making the trip. Few Hours of rest and in fact one night rest as well wont do much good to you when you move to Kaza and you might get hit with AMS. How many days can you spare for you at max? IN case only have above number of days that leaves you only with couple of days in Kaza which I feel wont be worth taking such a trip.

    • pardep giri on

      hey buddy,
      we are also going at that time. if u like may be we can meet on our way. btw we are going by bike. I hope you are going this year.

  21. Hi Dheeraj,

    We are planning to visit Kaza during this month end, basically trying to use the 2nd Oct weekend. We will be reaching Manali via bus and from there we plan to hire bikes to do the rest.

    Days with us- 1 Oct

    30th Sep- Leave Delhi via bus at night
    1st Oct- Reach Manali in the morning and do sightseeing.
    2nd Oct- Take Bikes and leave for Kaza.
    4 Oct- Leave for Delhi at night/evening(whatever is available)

    Can you suggest how should I plan my itinenary as we plan to join office back on Monday.

    Alternatively, could you also suggest if taking an off on Monday will be a good option.

    Many thanks,
    Anoop Singh

  22. Hi Dheeraj,

    Thanks for your excellent post. I am also planning Spiti and would love some advice from you.

    Me and my friend will be in Manali by September 28th and would want to be back in Delhi by 4th October. Now the thing I want to ask is – should we use the local transport (bus / shared taxis) or self driven car (Elite i20). I am not sure if i20 can take on this road without having major repair work. And given the number of days – is it doable?

    • Hello Lubin,

      You are right there may be some damage that i20 might undergo on the route from Batal to Kunzum Pass that is while going to Kaza from Manali. If you love your car then go ahead with taxis otherwise if you love adventure more than your car then you can give it a shot.

  23. Hi Dheeraj,

    I, with my wife, going to visit sphiti valley , end of september.
    We will reach Delhi by 8am in the morning, and our return flight is on 24th Sepetember 2015.

    As of now we are planning to come to Manali by bus then will go to Sphiti valley from Manali.
    It will be very helpful if you can guide us, as we have less number of days in hand.
    Also want to know approx. how much it’ll cost if we take a shared 4 wheeler from Manali to Spiti valley
    instead of bus.

    Thanks in Advance Dheeraj.

    • Subrata, you can try something like below:

      Day 1 : Reach Manali by overnight volvo of and stay overnight at Solang Valley as preferred for acclimatization
      Day 2 : Manali / Solang – Kaza
      Day 3 : Kaza – Dhangkar – Tabo
      Day 4 : Tabo – Pin Valley – Kaza. Do Ki, Kibber in the evening.
      Day 5 : Kaza – Langza – Komik – Hikkim – Kaza / Losar / Chandratal
      Day 6 : Kaza / Losar / Chandratal – Manali
      Day 7 : Reach Delhi by overnight Volvo from Manali

      You can get connected directly to some drivers in 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 pickup as well.

      The rates of the taxis are about Rs 3000-3500 per day depending upon the number of days you plan to travel, more the days, less the price.

      Otherwise, taxis in general are also available on the spot from Shimla or Manali from respective taxi stands

  24. Hi Dheeraj,

    How are you. we are 2 people planning visit in the month of september around 15th and i have planned as below:

    Day 1 Delhi to chandigarh
    Day 2 chandigarh to narkanda
    Day 3 narkanda to sarahan
    Day 4 Sarahan to Sangla
    Day 5 Sangla to kalpa
    Day 6 Kalpa to Nako
    Day 7 Nako to kaza
    Day 8 kaza to chandar tal lake

    Please advise is september around 15th is the right time to go and how will be the road conditions for a drive. i also plan on returning from kunzum pass via rohtang manali. Please help in planning this return journey as to how much should we travel per day and where to stay and halt our journey as i am unable to find much info on places on the net on this return journey.

    Thanks
    Siddharth

    • Hi Siddharth,

      I am doing great and hope the same from you. I will suggest following instead:

      Day 1 Delhi to Chandigarh
      Day 2 Chandigarh to narkanda to Sarahan
      Day 3 Sarahan to Sangla / Chitkul / Sangla
      Day 4 Sangla to kalpa
      Day 5 Kalpa to Nako to Geyu Mummy to Tabo
      Day 6 Tabo – Dhangkar – Pin Valley – Kaza
      Day 7 Kaza around, Ki Kibber, Komik, Hikkim, Langza
      Day 8 kaza to chandar tal lake

      • Thanks a lot Dheeraj….

        We have planned our trip following your suggestions….reaching Manali by Bus and Kaza by local cab.
        Is it possible to get a two wheeler from Kaza for 2/3 days for local sight-seeing.
        Also please let me know how much it is convenient with two wheelers.

        Please give me some idea about the daily rent for the bikes if available from Kaza and link/contact number of people who can provide bikes and which kind of bike we should take.

  25. After reading lot of travelogue, I finally encouraged myself to go for one myself, so here is what I have decided and now looking all the veterans to see if it will work or…

    PLEASE GUIDE ME: Taking a 15 day road trip to Himalayas

    ITINERARY: (KM are from google maps)

    Day-01 – Delhi – Meerut (Pick-up a friend) – Rishikesh / Dehradoon or Mussoorie
    (approx 290km)
    Day-02 – Rishikesh / Mussoorie / Dehradoon – Chakrata (which one you suggest is good to drive)
    (Approx 136KM)
    DAY-03 – Chakrata – kanesar fort – Sawara Village – Tiuni – Rohru
    (Approx 120KM) NIGHT STAY – ROHRU

    I HAVE LITTLE KNOWLEDGE ON THIS ROUTE
    Day-04
    Option -1
    ROHRU – NARKANDA – RAMPUR (VIA – SUNGRI – BAGHI)
    Option-2
    ROHRU – RAMPUR (VIA – SUNGRI – PAIE)
    (78KM)
    Day-05 – (FILL TANK) Rampur – Wangtu – Karcham – Sangla
    (78KM) Night Stay – Sangla
    Day-06 – Sangla – Rackchham – Chitkul – Sangla
    (41KM – TO & FRO) Back to Sangla
    Day-07 – Sangla – Powari – Kalpa – Khab – Nako
    (129km) Night Stay – Nako
    Day-08 – Nako- Nako Lake – Geyu Mummy- Tabo – Dhankar – Dhankar Lake – (Mud Village / PWD Rest House)
    (Approx111KM)
    Day-09 – Pin Valley – Kaza (Check-in) – Ki – Kibber – Gette – Tashigang – Kaza
    Night Stay – KAZA
    Day-10 – Kaza – Hikkim – Komic – Langza – Kaza – Losar
    (60KM + 4-5 HOUR DRIVE)
    Day-11 – Losar – Kunzum Pass – Chandra Tal – Bhatal (PWD rest house if available)
    Day-12 – Bhatal – Chattru – Gramphu – Rohtang La – Manali – Naggar
    (116km) Night Stay – HPTDC HOTEL
    Day-13 – Naggar – Kullu – Kasol(Check-In) – Manikarn – Kasol
    (75KM)
    Day-14 – Kasol – Mandi(Prashar Lake) – Barmana – Kasauli – Pinjore – Naraingarh – Ponta Sahib
    (376KM)
    Day-15 – Ponta Sahib – Meerut (Dropping a friend) – DELHI
    (190KM)

    MY CONCERNS:
    1- 85PS DUSTER IS GOOD TO GO FOR FULL CIRCUIT SPITI VALLEY ?
    2- LEAVING ON AUGUST 24th 2015, IS IT DOABLE AT THIS TIME?
    3- CROSS CHECK THE ITINERARY AND SUGGEST (Although i have used only DOW references)
    4- GOOD BUDGETED STAYING OPTIONS IN SPITI CIRCUIT
    5- DONT WANT TO DRIVE BEYOND 100KM IN SPITI CIRCUIT
    6- Do I NEED TO GET ACCOMMODATION BOOKING IN ADVANCE OR I MAY GET IT ON THE SPOT.
    (Preferring not to book in advance / will go by your advice)

    Warm Regards

    • Hi Doonie,

      Few points on the plan
      1. I will suggest to stretch till Sarahan instead of Rampur
      2. Sagnam has PWD rest house in Pin Valley, Mud village do not have. It has normal homestays.
      3. No need to stay at Losar, move ahead and stay either at Chandratal or at Batal
      4. Rest looks OK and doable

      Regarding queries, here are the replies

      1- Yes, duster is good to go
      2- Yes, doable in August. I hope rains fade away.
      3- Suggested above.
      4- For stay options in Kinnaur and Spiti, check the link: Some Good Options of Stays in Spiti Valley / Kinnaur Valley
      5- Seems OK what you are doing.
      6- Not really, you can book on the spot

      PS: Please do not use CAPS as it is meant to stress or shout 🙂

      Regards
      Dheeraj

      • Thank you Dheeraj Ji,

        Thank you very much for your kind reply, now its becoming sleepless nights, only dreaming about this trip, I can not wait for 24th August :).

        Point taken, will not use caps.

        Warm Regards

  26. Yogesh Gupta on

    Hi.
    Dheeraj, I along with my wife planning to do entire circuit from shimla side , in second week of September in Ford figo I am little worried about the stretch btw loshar to gramphu…is it manageable by Ford figo or should do it in September last week.

    • Yogesh, you will surely gonna face the music of water crossings in that stretch. In september thought it gets tamed and later you go, better and more tamed these water crossings will be. However, car will surely have a beating on that road.

      • Yogesh Gupta on

        Thanks, dheeraj after doing little bit of research on YouTube over these water crossings I decided to hire a zoomcar , a Scorpio or Ford eco sport which car is the better for this road? Is zoomcar is allowed for sightseeing on this entire circuit of shimla to manali via kalpa ,kaza,lohsar,gramphu…manali….. I am not planning to leh so is it OK in zoomcar.since I am doing it from shimla side do I require to have permit to cross rohtang pass from gramphu….

  27. Hi Dheeraj
    Is there any group tour arranged by you in Aug Sep??
    I and my wife would like to be part of it.
    Just Thot the fun you can have when you are more in number!!!

    • Dr Amit, we do not organize any tour or travel. DoW is just an info. sharing platform and we provide all the info required to make your trip to Himalayas all for free 🙂 🙂 … You can read more about it at: Beware | DoW is a Non-Profit & Non-Commercial Community

  28. When the best time to visit spiti valley andis their good hotels or staying facalite available their?

  29. Ankur Sharma on

    Hi Dheeraj
    i am planning to visit kaza from 10th July onwards in my Wagon R, shoul i Go with it.

    • Ankur, it will be very challenging for sure but we have done it in alto as well as dzire but that was september when water crossings are less furious. So, if you OK for the challenege and does not love more of your car than adventure.

  30. from Batal to Kaza and than Key and kibbar and than back to KAza…all in single day possible. we are going by our bike.

    • Shashi, yes it is possible to do Battal to Key – Kibber and then to Kaza. Also, you do not need to go to Kaza first if you are going from Batal to Kaza, the diversion to Ki – Kibber comes as you cross the Rangrik bridge. The left goes to Ki – Kibber and right goes to Kaza. So, do Ki – Kibber and then go to Kaza for resting for the day

        • HI Dheeraj:

          just want to know, as we are coming by BIke,
          1. is there a place where we can keep our bike safe near Chandrataal ?
          2. where can we find camps near Chandrataal.

        • Shashi, the whole region is safe to park the vehicles, there is a parking space where the camps are setup 1.5 KMs before the lake. Also, there is a parking site up ahead from where the lake is about 700-800 mtrs of trek. Camps are available at campsite about 1.5 KMs before the lake.

        • will Chandratall road be open by 15th July ??? or it is already open.

  31. HI dheeraj:

    Am not able to save the distance image on the article…….. can you mail me the same.
    Am planning Spiti from July 11th:
    Day 1 manali to chandrataal
    Day2 Chandrtaal to Kaza and key monastry
    Day 3 Kaza to reckong peo
    Day 4 Reckong peo -sangla-chitkul-sangla
    Day 5 Sangla-Shimla

    Do you find this itiniarary fine and also if you can help with petrol pump station locator.

  32. Mandy reckong peo on

    dear dheeraj
    i am currently living in reckong peo. I am new this area. I wanna plan my trip To kaza..-leh_ Manali. Than back to peo. with my frnds. In first week of july. We will hire cab from peo. Plz suggest itenary and places to explore.mandy

  33. Hi Dheeraj,

    I am travelling on 15th june night from delhi so is it a good idea to visit spiti valey cuz i have only 3 day’s. and in which location i will get snow at this time in himachal.. please suggest

    Regards
    Puneet

  34. Aswin Sridhar on

    Hi Dheeraj,
    Brilliant blogs you got there. Pls help me plan out. I will be traveling solo to Spiti in mid June by public transport (budget traveling) from delhi. After reading your blogs I think I should take the Shimla-Kinnaur Valley route. I wanted to know
    1) Whether I will be able to visit Chandertal lake at this time?
    2) Can I complete the circuit by coming back from the Manali side.
    3) Can all this be done by using public transport preferably bus? Pls suggest on the same.

    • Hi Aswin,

      Roads from Manali to Kaza, Spiti is expected to open around end of June types as per last reports. This can surely be done in public transport as all these are connected to main places like Shimla to Reckong Peo, Reckong Peo to Kaza, Kaza to Manali. So, whole route is connected by public transport.

      Regards
      Dheeraj

    • Aswin sridhar on

      Thanks for the reply. So as said I will take the shimla route. Planning to stop at PEO tabo (dhankar) to acclimitize and check out the valley before kaza. Now my question is assuming the Manali route isn’t open.. Can I still visit chandratal from kaza either thru taxi or bus?

      • Aswin, highly likely you can go over to the diversion point of Chandratal over Kunzum Pass by taxi, from there a 12.5 KM motorable road goes with last 1.5 KM anyways the trek. Now on this 12.5 KM, you need to see yourself how much road is motorable and in case the whole road is motorable you will have to trek last 1.5 KM, else you will have to trek in these 14 KMs wherever the road is closed. In case it is more than 6 KM, I will not advice you to trek as you may not be able to come back in time to get to car. So, take a wise call and get some locals with you for sure.

        • Aswin sridhar on

          Just came back from spiti. Firstly I want to thank you for your tips and secondly I want to thank you for introducing me to tsering. I got stuck at PEO because the bus from shimla to kaza is mostly full these days because of the high influx of labourers. Tsering arranged a taxi for me in the nick of time for not only dropping but also sightseeing. Realized later that hrtc buses don’t suit tourists so a taxi is a must to cover giyu komic langza and even dhanker. Tsering also gave me a great deal on room as I was traveling alone. And just FYI he has no idea that his hotels have such great review on the net. He was very appreciative of your efforts about the spiti cause. As we speak kaza Manali route is closed. Bro keeps postponing dates. Chandertal u will have to trek the entire stretch from battal but there are no camps there right now.
          All in all a perfect solo trip, thanks to Dow. Cheers.

        • Aswin, awesome and it feel so good to have such wonderful words. Tsering bhai no doubt is a real gem of a person, one of its own kind 🙂

  35. Prashant Varma on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    Just love your articles. We are planning a trip to spiti valley in the first week of august (for 7 days) in a ford figo. Is it a good idea? My friends are saying it can be dangerous during monsoon. Please suggest something. I am really interested for road trip to Spiti.

    • Prashant, yes, monsoons are not ideal time to be in Kinnaur though monsoon does not affect much in Spiti. However to reach Spiti you have to go through Kinnaur or Manali, hence, need to go through hassles of monsoons

  36. Dear Dheeraj, Got lot of information from your posts. We are planning a family trip to kaza via manali route in 3rd week of June,2015. Will be the roads all clear and guide us about the places that can be covered in 3-4 days, as we want to start our journey from ludhiana by our own vehicle on 21st june and come back by 26th june. Will Ertiga(maruti) be fine or we need to hire a SUV. Thanks and regards

    • Manmeet, I doubt the road will open this year before 20th June. In 3-4 days you cannot cover much and Ertiga will suffer up there for sure. So, better if you have high GC vehicle take that.

  37. Hello Dheeraj,

    Is it possible to reach Spiti Valley from Manali in 2 days?

    Thanks
    Mahidhar

      • Thank You Dheeraj,

        Sorry i forgot to mentioned about riding it on bike, can you please suggest a common itinerary to follow, i checked your posts they are helpful, but i am bit confused between the places to cover up.

        Thanks again
        Mahidhar

  38. Hey Dheeraj!
    Thanks a lot for your inputs! I have a question of my own!
    I am currently in Chandigarh and would like to assess the possibility of going to Spiti and coming back.
    I will be able to leave on 2nd June night and would like to return on 7th June night. Maybe spend 2 days in Spiti. I know its a short period but we are bound by academic constraints here!
    Will the roads be open? Is it feasible with our time constraints?

    • Deepak, it will take 3 days to just reach Spiti or at least two, may be try out below”:

      2nd June Night: Get the night bus from Chadnigarh to Reckong Peo
      3rd: stay at Kalpa
      4th: catch bus to KAza from Reckong Peo
      5th: Rest at Kaza
      6th: Get Shared taxi from Kaza to Rampur
      7th: Rampur to Chandigarh

      No doubt this is just one rest day extremely hectic 🙂

      • Dheeraj,

        Thank you so much for your advice!
        Will taking a cab from reckong peo, speed up the journey?
        Also on a basic note, is it worth pushing the limits like this?!

        • No Deepak, taking a cab will not help as you have to acclimatize too. IMHO, you should just stick to Kinnaur Valley and do Kalpa, Sangla and Chitkul instead of running just on road for Spiti.

        • Dheeraj,

          So how long would it take from Manali to Kinnaur valley by bus? Any idea on bus timings? Also, any suggestions on accommodation options in Kinnaur Valley?

        • Deepak, there are many places in Kinnaur, not sure where you would like to reach. Shimla to Reckong Peo is about 9-10 Hrs by public transport, similar or a bit less for Sangla Valley. You will reach Kinnaur Valley in about 5-6 Hrs only from Shimla.

  39. Hi Dheeraj,

    We are planning to simla Manali trip in june . We are planing to visit spiti vally from Manali. How many minimum days needed to visit spiti vally including kaza , Reckon peo etc. pls advise us about stay at spitii.
    can we ride with our own car? is bus available daily.
    pls reply .

  40. Hi dheeraj, we (4 friends) are planning a trip to himachal, reaching on 21st may, manali, and want to explore lahual and spiti Valley, and we have 5 days in hand.
    Will the road links be open by that time and is it safe enough?? And is it possible to come back from spiti and stay in kasol for a day??

    • Akshat for Lahaul Valley Rohtang Pass will open but Spiti valley road will be closed by that time of the year. You can go over to Keylong or Jispa and stay there for couple of days from Manali. One day you can stay in Kasol.

  41. Dear Dheeraj,

    Needed your help. Me and my family (wife, two kids 17 and 11) and father in law (70, healthy) are planning a trip starting June 5 afternoon from Chandigarh. We plan to be in Narkanda overnight (June 5) and then proceed on June 6 to Sarahan and stay there. On June 7 and 8 we are looking to be in Sangla, June 9 in Nako – then June 10-11 in Kaza. Then we wanted to go to Manali on June 12 and Kullu from Kaza. Will this be possible? Will the road be open? We need to reach Chandigarh back on June 14 evening. We will be in a Renault Duster. Thanks in advance

    • Raj, it is quite unlikely that Manali – Kaza road will open by that time of the year. It may be possible that you can travel to a point where the road has been opened from Kaza and then call a taxi on the other end till where you walk on foot to reach the other point and take taxi to Manali. But, since you are in your own car, it will not be possible too. So, you might have to return back from Kinnaur only. Rest your plan looks OK to me.

  42. Shantanu Sharma on

    Hi Dheeraj,
    This is probably my last question… 😛

    somewhere here on this site i found a good itninerary of 3-4 days which was from kaza to kaza( it covered all destinations around kaza)
    I cant find it again.. can you please give that itninerary. It was in this format….
    day1- kaza-something-somthing-kaza
    day2: kaza-something thing —–kaza
    day 3: kaza-ki-kibber-hgjhg-kaza

    • Hi Shantanu,

      It depends what all you have to cover and from where you are coming to Kaza. If you entered Kaza from Manali I will suggest following

      Day 1 | Kaza – Pin Valley – Dhangkar – Tabo
      Day 2 | Tabo – Lingti Valley (Rama Village / Lhalung Village) – Demul – Kaza
      Day 3 | Kaza – Hikkim – Komik – Langza – Kaza
      Day 4 | Kaza – Ki – Kibber – Gette – Tashigang – Kaza

      Regards
      Dheeraj

  43. Abhilash Sanjay Kulkarni on

    Hey there!
    Me and my group of friends(around 8) are planning a trip to lahoul and spiti via Manali during the 1st week of June . could you suggest an itinerary for the same (5 days).
    And also if possible you could estimate the expenditure.

    • Abhilash, first week of June, the road to Spiti Valley from Manali will not be open as that road opens by mid of June only. You can most likely visit Lahaul Valley in case you still interested? And 5 days are just required for Lahaul Valley in any case, so leave Spiti for some other time 🙂

  44. Shantanu Sharma on

    I’ve already been to manali once but this time(mid may) i want to travel beyond rohtang pass.
    I have 5/6 days in hand from manali to manali. So please suggest a good itinerary considering that i dont want to spend any time in manali and solang valley.. want to travel so far as i could…..beyond rohtang pass… kaza..spiti etc.

    thanx 🙂

    • Shantanu, it will not be possible to travel beyond Rohtang Pass in mid of May as most likely Rohtang Pass will not open for tourist by that time seeing the bad weather conditions that late in April. Also, Kaza – Spiti road from Manali open in mid of June. So, even if by any chance Rohtang Pass is open then as well you will only be able to travel to Lahaul valley around Keylong.

      • Shantanu Sharma on

        OK then what about 1st week of July?(considering it as monsoon time)
        Which travel agency should I contact?…we want taxi as we are photographers want to stop at some scenic spot to click some pics (which we can’t do with bus)
        What if I travel from shimla to manali via hrtc bus and then come back via taxi. Is it possible? What about hotels and places for accommodation? Please suggest a good itinerary…
        We 3 males coming from Nagpur to Delhi.

        • Shantanu, 1st week of July shall be good time to visit. If you looking for travel agent to book complete tour then try contacting [email protected]

          In case you are looking for just taxi, You can get connected directly to some drivers in 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 too.

          The rates of the taxis are about Rs 3000-3500 per day depending upon the number of days you plan to travel, more the days, less the price.

          Otherwise, taxis in general are also available on the spot from Shimla or Manali from respective taxi stands

          Your plan of travel by bus and then by taxi is also fine. Check the link: Some Good Options of Stays in Spiti Valley / Kinnaur Valley

  45. Ketan Pandya on

    Wonderful set of information here! I did Shimla-Spiti-Manali in 2013. I’d love to do it from Manali side when get a chance. I was actually planning to attend a family function in GJ on May 8 and start for Leh via Srinagar route, leaving GJ on May10. However, it seems this plan looks to be bit too optimistic in terms of roads accessibility. This article actually gives me a clue for my Plan-B. Drive Spiti again from Manali, spend a real good time at Kaza,Nako and Tabo (in that order), quick visit to chandrataal and come back via same route (with about 13 days in hand, ex Ahmedabad). in case if I’m not travelling with family, I’m going to try and chase one more dream down of riding motorcycle through this same route. Do you think its doable during that time of the year! Thanks for the great article again!

    • Ketan Pandya on

      ok, I just read one of your posts here, says Manali-Kaaza may open only by mid Jun 🙁

    • Ketan, no, from Manali side that route to Spiti Valley in general opens in mid of June. Chandratal still remains inaccessible by road. So, you will not be able to make it to Spiti Valley in May from Manali side.

  46. I m planning a bike ride to spiti valley via Kinnaur on 8 mar from Delhi . Can someone please make a itenary for the same. Days not an issue . Thnx.

    • Vishesh, there will be snowslides, shooting stones common in those days. March to April is the time when snow melts and even glaciers comes down as is on the roads, example Tinku Nalla near Puh. Once you cross over into Kinnaur, things will start getting bad in terms of roads. You should expect blockages. Read my experience from a similar time period last year linked in the article: A Race with Time on Deathway of Kinnaur Valley

      The article has all the links of all days in Spiti Valley in March. I am not trying to scare you rather just making you aware that things can be nasty and you will have to keep that in mind in order to witness such pristine beauty in heaven 😀

  47. Nachikethas on

    Hi Dheeraj
    really loved your descriptions and the web site.I just joined the forum, hope i can contribute too.
    Anyway I am planning a trip to Spiti valley in may end. I will reach Shimla on 23rd night and need to reach back at delhi on 30 which means i have only 6 days for exploration. I know it is too low but thats all i have. I am more interested in in Puh,Tabo and Kaza areas so is it possible to reach Kaza in one day from Shimla in public transport. Also I’m planning return trip via manali. Will the kaza-manali road open at that time?

    • I see you have 7 days in hand. You need to follow something like below:

      24th: Catch a bus to reckong Peo and reach Reckong Peo or Kalpa to stay over there
      25th: Catch the morning bus to Kaza from Reckong Peo and get down at Tabo for night stay
      26th: Explore Tabo and take the bus in the afternoon to Kaza coming from Reckong Peo
      27th: Explore around Kaza
      28th: Kaza to Reckong Peo
      29th: Reckong Peo to Chandigarh / Shimla
      30th: Chandigarh / Shimla to Delhi

      • Nachikethas on

        Thanks for you suggestions. Actually I need to reach Delhi on 30th by 9AM so that I can catch the train to Kochi. Anyway I will leave shimla for delhi on 29th night itself. Btw what about the Manali Kaza road? Will it be open by 24th may?

  48. Dear Dheeraj.

    Thank you for your great posts.

    We are planning to go to Spiti valley in June this season and would like to ask you a question about travelling. There will be two of us and would like to travel by public transport. The plan is to start from Shimla around June 7-10th and take around two weeks. We would like to make a detour to Chitkul, or another trek in this area. Then we would not go back to Shimla but continue towards Manali and then to Leh.

    How is it with the permit. Do we need it for the whole area, and can we get for such a long time? (We’re not Indian)
    How is it with public transport and is it possible to travel from one side to another – getting in from Shimla side and going out to Manali side?

    And most importantly how is the weather there from 10-25th June? Should we expect much rain? Is it dangerous because of landslides?

    Thank you for your help.

    Best,

    Matjaz

    • Hello Matjaz,

      Regarding permits for Kinnaur – Spiti Valley, you can check all the required details at the link: Inner Line Permits for Kinnaur – Spiti Valley

      You will need permits ahead of Reckong Peo, so you can get them either at Reckong Peo or at Shimla. Check the article for detailed process. Then you will need permits after reach Leh from Manali – Leh Highway. For those permits you can refer the article: Protected Area Permit in Ladakh for Foreigners

      Yes, it is possible to travel from Shimla and exit towards Manali though if you want to go to Leh then Manali will not come. After traveling the road over Kunzum Pass, you will reach a place called Gramphu at Manali – Leh Highway which is the Norther Portal of Rohtang Pass. If you will take right, then you travel to Leh else if you take left from there you travel to Manali – Rohtang Pass. The whole route is connected via HRTC Public Transport buses. Shimla to Reckong Peo, Reckong Peo to Kaza, Kaza to Manali, Kaza to Keylong, Keylong to Leh, Manali to Keylong if required. So, no worries all the way up to Leh.

      Weather should be pleasant as it is summers though it rains at times in June but not like monsoons which starts in late July.

      Regards
      dheeraj

  49. Antariksh Ruhil on

    Hi Dheeraj,

    Thanks for this information. I have been to manali many times. But this time, I will be planning a trip with my friend to Kaza,Spiti(much awaited) in Mar or Apr’15. We are little short on days(5-6), so want to ask for your expert recommendation on the same. We will be travelling from Delhi through volvo. It would be best if you give out a brief itinerary suggestion for the trip.

    Thanks in advance 🙂

    • Antariksh, you will not be able to visit Spiti Valley in March from Manali as the road from Manali only opens by June first or second week.

      • Antariksh Ruhil on

        Well, that’s sad 🙁
        Thanks for this info. Will it not be possible through shimla route also in Mar or April?? ..
        ..
        Also, if I plan in June, 5-6 days will work then?

        • Antariksh, It takes 3 days to reach Kaza / Tabo from Shimla side with a daily run of more than 10-12 Hrs on an average. So, in 6 day you will reach and start your journey back to home. That is you will be more or less on the road only. In case, you want to enjoy the trip to Spiti then make it in May or June and try to spare at least 9 days to enjoy a bit relaxing trip. This way you will be able to explore some of the places in Spiti Valley too.

        • March and April for Spiti Valley are also a bit harsh months with many snow slides, land slides common to witness. Try to plan in May / June or in September.

        • ANTARIKSH RUHIL on

          Well, okay. So, what would you recommend in Mar or Apr near manali. (Kinnaur, lahaul or any other northern Himachal) which is less-touched and more beautiful and is comparatively less tiring than Spiti via Shimla? 🙂

        • Antakriksh, the only thing that will be accessible during that time will be Kinnaur Valley. However, in order to go to Kinnaur valley you need to travel from Shimla and will need to skip Manali. Is that fine? If not and you have to go to Manali then better do Manali with Dharamshala – Mcleod Ganj

  50. mukesh singh on

    Dheeraj great work bro. Need a help. Planned a getaway to himachal. Will be reaching shimla on 3rd and have 5 days at hand. Visiting with my wife. Can I cover manali too? Can u suggest some itinerary? Thought of covering some ground on bike. Thanks in advance bro.

    • Mukesh, adding both Shimla and Manali in a 5 day trip is a bit too much. I will suggest best possible plan for both as below:

      Day 1 | Reach Shimla from by overnight Volvo from previous night. Check-in and rest at hotel. In the second half explore local Shimla including Shimla Ridge, Mall Road, Lakkar Bazaar, Back to Hotel By Evening.
      Day 2 | Shimla – Narkanda – Hatu Peak – Narkanda – Shimla or you can do Shimla – Kufri – Chail – Shimla (Little les hectic :))
      Day 3 | Shimla – Manali
      Day 4 | Manali Local sightseeing which includes Hadimba Temple, Manu Temple, Mall Road, Local Monastery, Vashisth Hot Water Springs (never found it interesting) etc.
      Day 5 | Manali – Snow Point either at Solang Valley or Marhi/Gulaba on the way to Rohtang Pass or Rphtang Pass if safe to reach there. Enjoy in snow and come back to Manali and on the way do paragliding at Solang Valley, if required.
      Day 6 | Manali – Delhi.

      You can exclude the day you want from it. On Day 5, you can opt to come back early from snow point and take the overnight bus to Delhi and reach Delhi early morning on Day 6.

      • Hi Dheeraj,

        I’ll be reaching Manali on 5th morning and have to reach Delhi on 10th. Do you suggest travelling to Spiti? If yes, what should be the itenary? if no, should shimla be considered as an alternative?

        Thanks
        Karishma

        • Karishma, not at all. The roads from Manali to Kaza is no longer approachable and closed for general public. Only locals in extreme circumstances may use it if required before the snowfall closes it for next 6 months. It is best to plan Spiti Valley trip in next season to enjoy up there rather than fighting for survival in harsh cold conditions.

        • So then I would plan my itenary this way:
          5th – Manali local sight seeing
          6th – Manali – Rohtang La
          7th – Leave for Shimla
          8th and 9th Shimla

          Do you suggest anything more interesting?

        • With just 5 days in hand I will suggest that you better do it like below:

          Day 1 – Reach Manali, take rest for half of the day and enjoy the walks on Mall road. (I assume that you will be reaching in the morning by Volvo)
          Day 2 – Manali Local sightseeing which includes Hadimba Temple, Manu Temple, Mall Road, Local Monastery, Vashisth Hot Water Springs (never found it interesting), Hike the woods around Old Manali, Jogni Falls, Bijli Mahadev near Kullu etc.
          Day 3 – Manali – Snow Point or Marhi/Gulaba on the way to Rohtang Pass. Enjoy in snow and come back to Manali. On the way back you can visit Solang Valley and do paragliding there.
          Day 4 – Manali – Naggar Castle(stay at Naggar and enjoy the place)
          Day 5 – Naggar Castle – Manali – Delhi (Checkout from Naggar Castle by noon. Since, the volov will be around 5.30 PM types, so either you can spend a sometime hanging around Naggar only and after lunch leave for Manali or come back to Manali and hang around on Mall road and finally take the return bus)

        • Hey,

          Thanks for that, it looks good!
          Any reason for opting out Shimla?

          Thanks
          Karishma

        • There isnt anything fancy of Shimla apart from the name and concrete buildings. Other places mentioned are much better and you will save travel time above all in running from Manali to Shimla, almost wasting a day of travel in already less number of days.

        • Thanks a lot Dheeraj!
          I’m hopeful to have an exciting trip now!
          Any reference for stay at Kasol?

          Karishma


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