Magnetic Hill, Ladakh: The illusion of Reality

An optical illusion or actuality, the Magnetic Hill in Ladakh has mysterious magnetic properties that draw tourists from across the globe. Imagine a car moving uphill with its ignition off! Well, this so-called gravity-defying hill operates on a magnetic phenomenon that leaves you spellbound. Sounds surreal? Well, you can experience it too while travelling to Ladakh.

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Location of Magnetic Hill

Does the hill truly exist or is it just a figment of a delusional tourist's imagination? A secret you will never truly know if you don't experience it first hand. Nesting pretty at an altitude of 14000 feet above sea level, you have to take the Leh-Kargil-Baltic National Highway to reach the destination. Found at a distance of 30 km from the scenic town of Leh the magnetic hill is girdled by the Sindhu river on its eastern side and cradled in a picturesque backdrop of the Himalayan Range. Just park your vehicle inside the marked box and experience the geological wonder nature has to offer.

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The Physics Behind The Mystery

We live in a strange world where sometimes there is no logical explanation to beliefs and superstitions. People say the hill has superpowers that transport the worthy to heaven. However, there is not one but two plausible scientific explanations behind this majestic magnetic hill. The first theory states that this Magnetic hill is an optical illusion caused by the descending and rising terrain. The alignment of the road and the absence of a visible horizon creates a downward slope to appear like an upslope. The second theory states that the hill exudes a strong magnetic force that pulls vehicles parked within its range. Many tourists and Indian Air Force officials have collaborated with this theory.

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Inference

A wonder of nature or an optical illusion- there is no definitive proof of either being true. But you can plan a trip to Leh-Ladakh to witness the astounding bounty of nature and submerge yourself in the tranquillity of the mountains.

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Places To Visit 

If you are planning a trip to the beautiful valley of Leh-Ladakh, you can appease your adventurous spirit with a variety of activities in and around the area. You can appease the soul with a relaxing yak safari on day one and get pumped up the next day by trekking to a hilltop for a breathtaking view of the Himalayas. Stop by the Gurudwara Pathar Sahib near the hill for a scrumptious langar on your way back.

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Best Time To Visit

The best time to visit is during the months of July to September. It is the ideal time to witness flawless landscapes, mighty mountains, a quaint lifestyle and sensational food. Anytime after September may result in adverse weather conditions and the dearth of transport facilities that can disrupt your trip.

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How To Reach

Leh-Ladakh has been a favourite spot for adventure-seeking bikers who like to ride it all the way and back. However, if that is not you, Leh has a well-connected airport from where taxies are easily available. You can also journey by train to Jammutawi, 700 km from the valley, which can be covered in a local taxi. The last and most convenient option is the Himachal Pradesh road transport buses. These state buses run regularly from Delhi-Manali-Leh, making it a comfortable and easy journey.

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What To Eat

On your way to Leh, you might not find any fancy restaurants or joints, so if you are a fussy eater it is best to stock up for the journey. Once you reach the city you can try the local Ladakhi cuisine, Tibetian, Chinese or even Indian dishes at local joints. But when in Ladakh, try more than just the quintessential instant noodles. Have a bite of Chuppri, a cheese made from yak's milk, Thupka, a crowd-pleasing noodle soup, Momos, stuffed dumplings nothing like you've ever eaten before and apricot jam, made from fresh organic apricots which are locally grown. Good food soothes the soul and the flavour of these distinctive dishes will linger on your taste buds, as you take back more than just memories.

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Itinerary

If you are planning a trip to Ladakh, Magnetic Hill is a spot you must check off your list.  With a touch of mystery and awe-inspiring views, the tranquil beauty makes it a dream holiday. Once you've chosen your preferred mode of transport, make your way to the Magnetic Hill and enjoy the scenic beauty around you. Enjoy a meal at the Gurudwara and watch an enthralling sunset that encompasses you in its idyllic beauty. You can return to Leh the same day.

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India has some hidden gems every traveller must check off their bucket list. Leh, a small old town surrounded by stupas and enchanting mountaintops. A city that will make you fall in love with nature and adventure. Ladakh, on the other hand, is engulfed in ragged, dry mountains and Tibetian monasteries that bring life to the little city. A trip to this majestic valley will invigorate your soul and calm your mind from the usual mundane city life.

This post was published by Sneha Virmani

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