Whether it is a short trip or a long holiday, a trip to Ladakh from Delhi should definitely be on the cards. In Ladakh you can have a great holiday. There is so much to do. You can enjoy local food, go sightseeing to some amazing spots and enjoy adventure sports. For the best holiday, you would want to reach Ladakh comfortably and go during the right season.
From Delhi, you have different options of reaching Ladakh. Depending on the time you have available and your preference of transportation, you could choose the best route or the mode of transport to take. To make it easy for you, we have put together this guide on how to get to Leh Ladakh from Delhi in the best possible way.
Best Time to Go to Ladakh
The general consensus among travellers is that the best time to visit Ladakh is in summer. The weather is at its best and the snow has melted. This season is also when the famous Hemis Festival is held. Summer is also a great time for road trips. Some people prefer going in the winter. These tourists generally travel by flight as driving down from Delhi to Ladakh during winter is impossible.
Getting to Ladakh from Delhi
To experience the best of Ladakh, you would want to spend a week in the town. Therefore, you need to plan your journey from Delhi thoroughly.
Let us now have a look at how you can get to Ladakh from Delhi in more detail.
Delhi to Ladakh by Flight
The Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport is well connected to major airports in the country, including the Delhi airport. From the airport, the city centre is around 9 kilometres away. You can reach the city centre by taxi, available from outside the airport. You can also book a prepaid can that has fixed fares. There are a few buses that go to and from the Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport too.
Flights to Ladakh from Delhi take about an hour to reach. Prices of tickets are generally around Rs. 2,500. But, when the tourist season kicks in prices can go up to Rs. 5,000 for a one-way fare.
Since the airport is small, passenger facilities are not up to the mark. Also, be prepared for stringent checks as the airport comes in a politically sensitive region.
Delhi to Ladakh by Train
You cannot reach Ladakh directly by train as there is no train station in Ladakh. The nearest train station from Ladakh is Jammu. There are many trains that ply from Delhi to Jammu. The quickest is the Jammu Rajdhani, it takes around nine hours to get to Jammu.
To get to Ladakh from Jammu you can take a taxi. You can book at taxi from the Jammu railway station or pre-book a cab online. Pre-booked private cabs will cost you anything between Rs. 19,000 to Rs. 25,000. Cabs from Jammu station will be a bit cheaper if you bargain.
You also have the option of taking a flight from Jammu to Leh, Air India is the only airline that operates on this route.
Delhi to Ladakh by Bus
You can take a bus from Delhi to Ladakh, started last year, the journey is one of the longest routes in India. It takes around 24 hours to reach. Buses ply from the Delhi ISBT and you will have to change buses at Keylong.
The fare for the journey is around Rs. 1,300 and tickets can be booked from the Delhi ISBT booking counter in advance. If you love long journeys and scenic drives, you will love the bus drive from Delhi to Ladakh.
The bus service is only operational in the summer and not in the winter, when road conditions are not favourable for driving.
How To Get To Leh-Ladakh By Road
If you plan to go by road, the best time to travel is between May and mid-October. During this period, most of the roads in Ladakh are open and are in prime condition.
The two best routes to take from Delhi are either the Manali route or the Srinagar route. You can drive down to Manali from Delhi or take a flight, the same goes for Srinagar. Along the way to Ladakh, you can make a few stops at popular tourist destinations. You can at Sarchu, Shargol, Drass or Kargil.
If you are planning on driving down from Delhi to Ladakh, you need to plan your journey carefully. You have can take two routes, you can drive down to Manali or to Srinagar.
The best way to go about the journey is to rest for two days before making the tedious journey to Ladakh. The drive from Manali and Srinagar can be taxing, so attempt only if you love adventure and are capable of driving for long hours through strenuous terrain.
If you want to hire an SUV, which is the best vehicle for a road trip to Ladakh, you can rent one in Delhi.
Hired Car/Taxi Online
From Delhi, there are many taxis that you can hire online. The total journey for a Delhi to Ladakh road trip is 2049 kilometres. The advantage of hiring a taxi is that you can travel at your own convivence and make as many stopovers along the way.
- Cost: Prices for a round trip journey are approximately Rs. 20,000, depending on the car you choose. While a hatchback costs less, hiring a sedan or an SUV will cost you more. Fare for hiring a private cab online does not include toll fare.
Hired Car/Taxi From Srinagar
If you want to avoid booking a cab online, you can hire one from Srinagar. Taxis are available from Srinagar railway station for an average fare of Rs.15,000. Fares are fixed by the government, fares are put up on boards outside the station. However, you are expected to tip the driver for taking you to Leh from Srinagar.
You can also take a taxi from Manali to Ladakh. From Manali, you have two options, you can either take a shared taxi that costs Rs.3,000 for a seat or book a private taxi for Rs.21,000.
Getting to Leh By Bike
A bike trip from Delhi to Ladakh is a great experience. You get to ride through amazing passes and along the way come across scenic sights, If you are up for a challenge or love riding, you’ll love the terrain and the zig-zag, curvy roads that you need to pass through.
If you aren’t comfortable riding solo, you can accompany a bikers club. From Delhi, there are many bikers who ride down to Manali in the summer.
You can take two routes if you are going on a bike trip, you can reach Ladakh via Manali or Srinagar. If you don’t have a bike and want to rent one, you can do that in Delhi. Prices are extremely costly. It is much better to travel to Manali and from there hire a bike to Leh-Ladakh.
Manali-Leh Ladakh route
Riding along this 490 kilometre route is one of the best experiences. Along this route you will have pass through amazing sceneries and passes. The highly acclaimed Rohtang Pass falls along this route. For an easier time, make sure you book your pass permit online at the Tourism Development Council of Himachal Pradesh. This helps you avoid the queue at the SDM counter.
For a petrol vehicle, the pass permit costs Rs. 800 and it is Rs.400 for a diesel vehicle.
- Route: Manali – Gramphu – Khokhsar – Sissu – Keylong – Jispa – ZingZing Bar – Sarchu – Pang – Tanglang La – Miru – Upshi – Karu – Leh
If you are looking to take another route, the Srinagar to Leh Ladakh one is an equally gorgeous one to drive through. Along this route, you will pass through scenic spots of the Himalayas. You will pass through the world’s highest motorable pass, the Khardung La pass and the Kashmir Valley. This road is more convenient that the Manali- Leh because this road has more connectivity and facilities like petrol pumps and eateries.
- Route: Srinagar – Sonamarg – Zoji La – Drass – Kargil – Mulbekh – Lamayuru – Saspol – Leh
Many travellers often make the trip from Delhi to Leh Ladakh during the summer. It is the best time to go as the weather is good and the roads clear. For the best experience, it is suggested you drive down from Delhi by car or bike. You can also hire a cab or go by bus, for a more convenient approach its is best to go by flight from Delhi.
If you have any questions regarding a bike trip or a journey from Delhi to Leh Ladakh, you can ask us in the comments section below and we will be glad to help you solve them.