With rolling arid mountains, clear skies and vivid colours, this picture perfect location is the best location for travellers looking for relaxation and a little recreation. With colourful fluttering flags dotting the entire region, Ladakh offers a magical experience.
If you’re thinking about a trip here, read this list before you get started so that you know where to go, what to do and how to get there. And trust us, it’s going to be a holiday you’re not going to forget.
Best time to visit Ladakh
The summer, which is between April to July, is one of the most popular times to visit this beautiful place as temperatures stay at a cool 15-30 degrees Celsius, letting you enjoy the sights of the location.
If you’re looking to experience this snowy region in its natural glory, then winter (October to March) is also a good time to plan a trip here, as there are just a handful of tourists as roads are not very accessible.
How to get there
- By Air: Kushok Bakula Rimpochee is the only airport in Leh Ladakh. Flights are available from all major Indian cities, such as Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Jammu and Srinagar.
- By Road: There are two main highways to reach Leh Ladakh: via Manali–Leh highway and second is Srinagar-Leh Highway. The first is only open between July and November and Manali–Leh Highway opens from mid-June to early-October.
- By Rail: The closest railway station is Jammu Tawi, Located on the distance of approximately 708 kilometers from Leh.
Why is it popular
Ladakh is one of the best places to experience the natural beauty India has to offer. From the mountain ranges and pristine waters to the lush valleys and snow capped hills, this destination is a treat for the senses. The food, history and stunning landscapes make this a must-visit at least once in your life.
Cost of trip
Ladakh is one of those places where you can holiday on a budget or enjoy a little more of a luxurious stay. A budget holiday that includes stay, food, sightseeing and moderate travel will cost you between Rs. 700 and Rs. 1200 per day, per person. For those looking for better hotels and private cars, the budget would go up to Rs 2000 to Rs. 4000 a day.
Places to see
- Valleys: Ladakh boasts a number of valleys that offer stunning views. Some of the best valleys to visit include Indus Valley, which is the home to the Indus Valley civilization, the oldest known to mankind, and the Markah Valley which is a good trekking spot in Ladakh.
- Lakes: Ladakh offers some of the most stunning lakes in the country. The clear blue pristine waters and bright skies make for a beautiful backdrop. Some of the best lakes to see include Pangong Lake and Tso Kar Lake.
- Monasteries: Ladakh is famous for its gorgeous monasteries that offer a glimpse into the great history of the Buddhist heritage. The structures are large and awe inspiring. Some of the famous monasteries to explore include Hemis Monastery and Thiksey Monastery.
Things to do in Ladakh
- Camping: Ladakh is one of the best places to pitch a tent and enjoy a night under the stars. There are many vendors that offer camping (and luxury camping services) in Ladakh so you will be spoilt for choice. Indus Valley is one camping spot to check out.
- Local food: Ladakh offers some great comfort food that’s perfect for the weather there. Enjoy momos, a range of street food. Don’t forget to try the yak cheese, butter tea and other local favourites.
- Riding: Ladakh boasts of the highest motorable road in the world and sees riders from across the country come just to ride down these long, winding paths.
- Adventure activities: There are a number of treks you can take part in here. Apart from that you can also go on a safari or nature trail here.
- Shopping: There are a number of lively markets you can visit in Ladakh to get your shopping fix. Here you will find scarves, local handicrafts, food items and lots of pashminas. You’ll find the best of shops on Main Bazaar Road.
- See the Llams: This is one of the most fun things to witness in Ladakh. Seeing the Llams perform the colorful Chhams during Hemis Festival or Ladakh Festival is not to be missed.
- Pack properly: Keep in mind that even if you’re travelling during summer, you will need to carry some warm garments with you as temperatures can dip drastically at night.
- Clothing essentials: Essentials include warm clothes, proper identification, good shoes, sunblock and cash as most places do not accept card.
- No plastic: Plastic is officially banned in Ladakh so you need to avoid the use of plastic and polythene bags. Avoid packing and using them during your trip here.
- Biker tips: While many private vehicles, especially motorcycles, often do not need a permit to travel across India, if you are going to hire a vehicle, you need to have the appropriate documents to travel interstate.
- Winter tip: If you are planning a trip here during winter make sure to carry winter shields, woolen wear and snow boots.
Ladakh is one of the country’s hidden gems and is definitely worth a visit. There are lots of things to do, natural beauty to take in and delicious cuisine to indulge in. Let us know about your experiences and tips in the comments section below.