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THE GREAT OFFBEAT LADAKH ESCAPADE

If you want to lose yourself in Ladakh, this Off-the-Beaten Escapade has been designed just for you! Explore the remote Zanskar Valley, fascinating Aryan villages of Dha-Hanu, the Border village of Turtuk, transverse via the forbidden Wari-La to Pangong Lake and many other hidden landscapes!

Sector: Srinagar - Mulbek - Suru valley - Rangdum - Padum(Zanskar) - Rangdum -Mulbek - Dha Hanu - Lamayuru - Alchi - Basgo - Likir - Leh - Nubra - Turtuk -Diskit -Hunder -Sumur- Wari La - Pangong - ChangLa - Leh - Tsomoriri - Tsokar - Jispa - Manali

Tour duration: 19 Days 18 Nights


Tour Program:

Day

Trip Details

1

On arrival at Srinagar airport, you will be received by our representative and commuted to Nagin Lake in Srinagar. Overnight Stay in Deluxe Houseboats floating on the beautiful Nagin Lake set amidst the green mountains.

2

After breakfast, we would begin drive towards Ladakh. The route takes us through the beautiful meadows of Sonamarg. From Sonamarg, the landscape starts changing dramatically all the way as we cross the famous Zoji La pass towards Drass.  A few kms beyond Drass is the Drass war memorial, built in the memory of soldiers martyred in the 1999 Kargil war and is a must visit for every traveler passing through this route. We end our journey at Mulbekh passing through Kargil for overnight stay. The place is famous for the 9-metre high rock sculpture of Maitreya Buddha built around the 8th century.

3

Today, we drive from Mulbek to Rangdum (6-7 hrs). After a short drive, we enter in to the Suru valley, one of the most beautiful regions of ladakh, and the heartland of Kargil. You can enjoy the view of massive Nun and Kun peak and the Parkachik glacier.  The farthest and the most isolated part of the Suru Valley, Rangdum is a picturesque place, surrounded by colourful hills on the one side and glacier encrusted rocky mountains on the other. It is almost midway between Kargil and Padum. Overnight stay in Tented Camps at Rangdum.

4

After breakfast, we drive from Rangdum to Padum.  About 20 kms. southeast of Randum stands the Penzi-la pass across which lies Zanskar. The Penzi-la pass (4401m) is a scenic tableland surrounded by snow-covered peaks. As the Zanskar road winds down the steep slopes of Penzi-la to the head of the Stod valley, the majestic Drang-Drung glazier looms into full view. Drang-Drung is one of the largest glacier in Ladakh. We end our journey  for the day at Padum,  where you will be checked into your Guesthouse for overnight stay.

5

Once the capital of the ancient kingdom of Zanskar, Padum (3505 mts.) is the present-day administrative headquarters of the region. We shall explore by visiting the beautiful monastery of Stongdey (the second largest Gelukpa gonpa), Zangla nunnery and fort, the only remaining royal palace in Zanskar.  Over night stay in Guesthouse in Padum.

6

Today, we shall visit the picturesque village of Sani, located around 6 kms to the west of Padum.  The chief attraction here is the castle-like monastery, founded by Kanishka on account of the Kanika Stupa inside the complex. Sani is also associated with Naropa, the famous Indian Yogi from Vikramsila, who meditated under the Kanika Stupa. The bronze figure of the Yogi, which is unveiled once a year in late July, leads to a 2-day festival which is celebrated with Bardan Monastery monks performing masked dances as ritual offering. 

 We shall also visit Karsha Monastery situated in the Karsha village of the Zanskar region. The largest monastic establishment of Zanskar, Karsha Gompa is an imposing complex of neatly white-washed chapels and rooms. Lhabshang, Gorje Dzong (nunnery) and the old temple of Chukshit-Tal are some other major attractions. It is famous for the 3-day long Gustor Festival held during July.  Over night stay in Guesthouse in Padum.

7

We drive back from Padum to Rangdum via Penzi-La pass. Overnight stay in Tented Camps at Rangdum.

8

Today we drive back from Rangdum to Mulbek, where you will be checked into your Deluxe Camps on arrival. Overnight stay at Mulbek.

9

After breakfast, we start our journey towards the fascinating remote Aryan villages of Dha and Hanu, located around 163 kms,to the south west of Leh. In these villages reside the Brokpa community, who are considered to be the last race of Aryans confined to the valley.

 They are racially and culturally distinct from the rest of Ladakhis. With their pure Aryan features, these people are said to have preserved their racial purity down the centuries. However, their culture and religious practices are very similar to ancient pre- Buddhist religion known as Bon-Chos. They are believed to have perhaps descended from the army of Alexander of Macedonia, and to have migrated from the Gilgit region in the present day Pakistan, an event which must have occurred well before Gilgit came under the influence of Islam. Their language is said to be akin to that spoken in Gilgit and by immigrants from Gilgit settled in the Drass south of Kargil. Their facial features, however, as well as their head and dress ornaments are the most striking and first noticeable when one meets them. Overnight stay in Hanu village.

10

After breakfast, we drive towards Leh. Enroute we visit Lamayuru, one of the oldest monasteries in the region. The landscape here is called “Moonland”, as it resembles the lunar landscape. Enroute we shall visit the Basgo monastery, which is listed as a World heritage site. The complex of buildings includes a ruined fortress dating from before the 15th century, two large temples and a small shrine.

The journey also takes us through Alchi and Likir monasteries and the popular “Magnetic hill” that is located about 30 km from Leh, at a height of 14,000 feet above sea level. Here you can see the unusual phenomenon of your vehicle going upwards on its own at a speed with the engines off.

We reach the town of Leh, where you will be checked into a Guesthouse for overnight stay.

11

Full day sightseeing of Leh, wherein we will visit Hemis monastery, Thiksey monastery and Stok palace in the morning. We come back to guesthouse for hot lunch and rest. In the evening, we visit the Hall of Fame (a glorious museum built by the Indian Army) and end the day by enjoying the beautiful sunset at Shanti Stupa. Overnight stay at Guesthouse in Leh.

12

After breakfast, drive towards Nubra Valley via Khardungla Pass (18380 feet) –the Highest Motorable Road in the World. Nubra Valley is also known as the ‘Valley of Flowers’ and lies at an average altitude of 10,000 feet above sea level. We continue our drive to Turtuk village located near the Indo-Pakistan border. The people in Turtuk are predominantly Muslim. The border village, which forms part of the famed Silk Route used to belong to Pakistan, until it was recaptured by the Indian Army in 1971.Evening free to explore. Overnight stay at Turtuk.

13

Today, we leave Turtuk and shall drive towards Hunder village and Diskit Monastery. One can see an impressive 32 metre (106 feet) Maitreya Buddha statue on top of a hill below the monastery facing the Shyok River. Other attractions include the White Sand dunes and Camel Safari on the double humped camels which are found only in Nubra. Later, we shall visit the Samstemling Gompa in Sumur and the Panamik Hot springs at Panamik village. Overnight stay at Sumur.

14

Early morning, we drive directly to the beautiful crystal clear, color-changing high altitude lake, the Pangong lake located next to the China border through Wari La pass (approx. 7-8 hours). Overnight stay at Deluxe Camps near Pangong Lakeside.

15

After breakfast, we drive back to Leh via Changla pass. Evening free to explore. Overnight stay at Guesthouse in Leh.

16

Rafting from Chilling to Nimo in Zanskar river (Level 3 plus) Duration:  approx 2 1/2 Hours. This is the most cherished rafting option in Ladakh. Drive back to Leh. Overnight stay at Guesthouse in Leh.

17

After breakfast, we begin our drive from Ladakh to Manali today via Tsomoriri Lake. The drive is full of beautiful landscapes on the way to Tsomoriri Lake. This lake is one of the most serene and tranquil lakes in the world. Overnight stay in guesthouse at Korzok village, one of the most high altitude settlements in Ladakh.

18

After breakfast, we continue our journey passing by Tsokar lake meaning White lake because of the salt deposited around it. Tsokar is situated at an altitude of 4530m above sea level and is surrounded by extensive areas of fresh and saline marshes and wet meadows, which host varieties of water birds. We pass through the breathtaking Baralacha Pass on the way amidst beautiful scenery. We end at journey at Jispa. Overnight camping in Deluxe tents.

19

After breakfast, we drive through the mountain ranges and pass the beautiful Rohtang pass. This high altitude road beyond the great Himalayan range connects the densely fertile and green Kullu valley to the stark barren region of Ladakh. We end our journey at Manali bus stop with memories of a Lifetime!

 

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