Safari in the best part of Himalaya - Leh Ladakh Shimla Manali
Pioneer Adventure Tour Operators
in India specialized in Fixed Departure and tailor made adventure
trips thorough out the Indian Himalayas
Safari in the best part of Himalaya - Leh Ladakh Shimla Manali
Day01: Manali to Sarchu: Early drive from Manali to Sarchu via Rohtang Pass, Sisu Water Fall, Keylong, Baralachala Pass. Distance 253 kms, time taken 10 hours.
Day02:Drive from Manali leds towards spectacular view of Steep Mountain, having view of deep George; endanger flowers, birds and wild animal. Manali is on 2000mts high, Rohtang Pass 4000mts, Keylong 3500mts, Baralachala Pass 4800mts and Sarchu is on 4200mts high.Camp stay at Sarchu.
Day02:Sarchu to Leh: Early drive to Leh after breakfast, via Sarchu plain, Gata Loops, Nukeela Pass(4700mts), Lachungla Pass(4800mts), Pang, Pang More plain, Tangla-la Pass(5400mts) and Indus Valley.
Day03:Leh will come as a surprise to those who associate India with heat, cow, dust and wilting flowers. Lying just north of the Indus River, Leh is surrounded by the lower mountains south of the Karakoram ranges. The harsh but beautiful landscape adorned with gompas, some precariously sitting on the hilltops, and the variable, mainly cooler temperature never fail to empress.
Leh has been through major changes, awakening from being a small and backward town as recent as two decades ago, it has been transformed into a bustling, small city peopled by adventure-seeking tourists. The busy market, previously comprised of small stalls selling rough jewelry and local leather ware, is now a collection of modern retail shops carrying wide variety of merchandises from T-shirts to Ladakhi antiques to handicrafts and souvenirs. With its simple layout and compact area, shopping is a relatively enjoyable experience in Leh.
Not the shopping Leh attracts, it is the spectacular beauty of the place, gompas adorning the hilltops against the glorious blue sky and the majesty of the mountains, some seemingly carved from a moon landscape are feast for the eyes. It is said that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, Leh is all beauty in its varied forms everywhere you turn.
Going outside of Leh, one should not be fooled by the bleakness of the landscape. The Trans-himalayan region of Ladakh is technically known as "alpine steppe". Pay attention to the land and one finds a vivid cross section of flora and fauna braving the harsh environment. Marmots are very common and are low, flowering scrubs, rose bushes and pencil cedars.
Local Tour in Leh: focus on the Gompas
Gompas are synonymous to temples, mosques or churches. Here in Leh, they are built in typical Tibetan Buddhist style. Adorning the place are white silk scarves and mani walls/stones carved with prayers especially the Tibetan mantra "Om Mani Padmi Om" which translate in English "Praise to the Jewel in the Lotus Flower". Say your prayers in the colonnades of whirring prayer wheels, give reverence to the traditional Buddhist thangkas, the religious scroll paintings, or circumambulate praying for world peace, you'll find the gompas in Leh, most conducive.
In the itinerary:
Shanti Stupa – it is new religious monument, built in 1985 by a Japanese Buddhist Order and inaugurated by the Dalai Lama. The stupa is dedicated for World Peace. The place is mainly deserted but standing 500 ft above Leh, it offers a stunning, sweeping view of the valley.
Stok Palace – is both a palace and a Gompa. The palace is modern, built by the Dogra rulers from Jammu, who annexed the place circa 1840. The ex-Queen of Ladakh still lives here. In the premises, there is also a small but interesting museum containing an impressive collection of thangkas, some as old as 13th century, idols, jewelry, coins, weaponry and regal memorabilia.
Shey Gompa – is different from the other Gompas because this was once a royal residence until the 1500s. The Namgyals, rulers of Leh, used to live here. Shey's claim to fame is the huge, three storeyed copper-and-brass Buddha draped all over with white silk. The brightly colored murals also attract a lot of admiration.
Thiksey Gompa – located along the Indus River, the 12-storey Gompa is painted in white, ocre and dark red. This 300-year old monastery houses a nunnery and has ten temples. In the main hall there is a very opulent statue of Buddha; all in gold, turquoise, lapis lazuli and other precious stones.
Leh Palace – built by Namgyals rulers (Sengge Namgyal) in the 17th century when they own Leh. It is an imposing structure, nine storeys in all, that juts out of the Tesemo Hill (Victory Hill). A side trip from Leh Palace, visit to the Tesemo Gompa, which was built in 1430AD and has statues of Maitreya Buddha, Avalokiteshvara and Manjushree.
Day04 - To Khardung La
"La" is the Ladakhi term for a "Pass". A pass is a gap between mountains has the general form of a saddle that allows access to the range. Khardung La is the highest motorable pass in the world at the height of 5,578 meters.
The change in altitude is rather abrupt from 3,600m to over 5,000m so the climb is steel all the way and can be quite strenuous, and signs of high-altitude sickness may set in if you are susceptible to it. It is strongly suggested to drive slowly. It is a good idea to stop for a while. It is also suggested that one wraps itself with woollens and muffler tightly around one-self. The breeze that whips at this height is very icy.
Those who persevere will be rewarded with a very stupendous view from the majestic Khardung La. Mountains rise up all around the pass in stunningly beautiful colors. On a clear day, one can see the Zanskar range to the south and the Karakoram range to the north. Pay attention to the land and one is likely to see marmots scurrying away amidst the scrubs of low bushes and flowering plants.
Day05: To Pangong Tso, Village Visit and Hemis Gompa
"Tso" is the Ladakhi term for "lake". Some 160 kms from Leh, Pangong Tso is the longest lake in Western Himalaya. It is about 130kms long and 6-7kms wide. About 1/3rd of the lake is in the Indian territories and the 2/3rds in China. Pangong is surrounded by barren, snow capped mountains on all side. It is Asia's largest saltwater lake. Its beauty is undeniable, the waters appears striped with varying shades of blue, purple and green.
Around Pangong one may see the Tibetan wild ass known as Kiang. This is the nearest living relative of the modern horse and is endangered. Look for the kiangs, which could be a solitary male or in herds of about a dozen. Check out the fauna here as well. There are some endangered flowers on the way and a profusion of colors from different types of poppies.
Also worth close attention is looking out for the black-necked crane. On the shores of Pangong lives a very small population of the highly endangered black-necked crane. There are only 6,000 or so of these birds left in the world and mostly in China, Pakistan and India. If you are lucky to sight of one these birds, be sure to snap a photo; you would be just one of the very few in the whole world who have seen this beautiful bird.
Visit Hemis Gompa on the way. Located across the Indus River, Hemis Gompa is the largest and the wealthiest in the Ladakh area. It is also a beautiful building that is richly embellished. It is a monastery of the Kagypa Sect, the Red Hat Sect. The gompa attracts a huge crowd of visitors especially during the annual Hemis Tsechu usually held in June or July.
Day06: Leh to Delhi by fly.
Total Cost Rs: /- for two person
Minimum no of person: 2
Includes: Transportation, All sightseeing on the way, Best Accommodation, All meals (Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner), Professional Guide, Inner line permit.
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