Leh Ladakh is described by those who visit as a heaven on earth. With stunning views and a lovely climate, tourists cannot ask for a better place to vacation than Leh in Ladakh.
For an even better experience, one should try a Srinagar to Leh bike trip. It offers you the thrills and excitement of riding and you also get to pass through amazing scenery.
In this article, we tell you all about the journey from Srinagar to Leh by bike. From why it is so popular to what route to take, precautions to keep in mind and more. We give you all the information you need to prepare for an amazing journey. Read on.
What makes a Srinagar to Ladakh bike trip so popular?
The stunning hills and the thrill of riding on smooth and winding roads are what makes a Srinagar to Ladakh bike trip so popular. Along the route, riders will go by some of the most iconic passes and peaks in India. A bike ride to Ladakh will also give you the opportunity to explore the Land of Passes. You can take detours to explore other towns and cities near Ladakh.
Best Time to Visit
You are sure to have a good time riding along the route from Srinagar to Leh in the summer. The weather is not extremely cold and the roads are free of ice and snow. The temperature is also at its best during the summer. From April till October end is when all the passes and points in Ladakh are open to the public, so it is a good time to go. The average day temperature in the summer is 25°C.
Best Routes to Take – Srinagar To Leh Ladakh
Srinagar – Sonamarg – Lamayuru – Leh
- Distance: 425 kilometers
Srinagar – Sonamarg
It takes around three hours to get to Sonamarg. So, for an entire day of sightseeing and adventure, we suggest that you leave Srinagar at 5 am, get to Sonamarg at around 8 am, rest for a bit and then proceed to explore what the town has to offer. You have to visit the Thajiwas glacier, where you can enjoy horse rides.
Sonamarg – Lamayuru
For most parts of this journey, you will be driving down the National Highway 1 or the Srinagar Leh Highway. Start your journey early so that you have enough time to tour Lamayuru. The drive is fairly comfortable as the road is in good condition. Once you reach Lamayuru, you can stay at one of the many homestays or choose to explore the place before heading back on the road to Leh.
Lamayuru – Leh
This is the last leg of your journey on the Srinagar Leh highway. The journey will take you around three to four hours. While on your way to Leh, do not forget to stop and explore the Gurdwara Pathar Sahib and Magnetic Hill. In Leh, you can enjoy adventure sports, safaris and even explore iconic places such as the Leh Palace and a few historic monasteries.
A route to Follow from Leh to Srinagar (via Drass)
Leh – Batalik – Kargil – Srinagar
- Distance: 462 kilometres
Leh – Batalik
This route passes through the LOC, so it is always heavily guarded. The road is in pretty good shape, so the ride is comfortable. There are a lot of army trucks that ply on this route, so sometimes you may find the road congestion. Leave Leh by 6 am to get to Batalik by 10 am.
Batalik – Kargil
This route begins parallel to the Indus Valley Road. Mid-way, you need to make a steep turn onto the Leh via Batalik Road. The drive from there is comfortable until you reach a portion that passes through many twists and turns. Total drive time is about one hour and 30 minutes so there is no point in stopping along the way unless you want to do a bit of sightseeing.
Kargil – Srinagar
This route is a popular one, so expect traffic in bits and pieces. The roads are fairly good so it should take you around seven hours to reach Srinagar. You can stop midway in Sonamarg for a cup of tea and freshen up. The Dana Pani is a good hotel for snacks and tea in Sonamarg.
Cost of a Srinagar to Leh Bike Trip
You cannot make the drive from Srinagar to Leh in one day. It is necessary to stop at locations along the way for a day before proceeding. You will spend around Rs. 1,000 a day (off season) and Rs. 2,000 (peak season) for food and stay. Petrol will cost you Rs. 7,000 to Rs. 10,000 depending on the route you take, mileage, etc. Other costs include bike maintenance and entry fees to see attractions.
How to Prepare & Plan for a Srinagar Leh Bike Trip
- If you are taking your own bike make sure it is well serviced.
- Note down the route and mark the places you would like to stop.
- Carry medication as sometimes high altitudes can affect health.
- Do research about hotels and homestays.
- Make sure you are in top physical condition before heading out on a bike trip.
- Wear the right clothes, protective gear and a good helmet.
Things to Remember
- Climatic conditions
- Don’t go in the winter as the roads are dangerous
- Since you will be driving along the border, there are some parts that have heavy checking, be prepared with documents
- There are lack of petrol pumps along the way, so stock up on fuel in Srinagar
Can You Rent a Bike to Leh?
You can rent a bike for Rs. 1,000 to Rs. 1,500 a day. You will also have to pay a small deposit which is around Rs.500 – this is refundable.
Do Tour Companies Offer Bike Trips?
Yes, tour companies such as Adventure Nation and the Enfield Riders conduct trips to Leh Ladakh from Srinagar. Tours cost approximately Rs. 70,000 per head; this does not include bike rentals.
What to Carry
- All ID proofs
- Bike repair tools
- A camera
- Woollen clothing
If you are planning a bike trip to Leh from Srinagar and are confused about how to start planning, what route follow and what to carry, follow this guide. It’s got all the details you need to successfully complete a Srinagar to Leh bike trip.