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Leh Ladakh Travel Essentials

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Ideal duration: 5-7 days

Best Time: June to September Read More

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Also Refered As:

Ladakh

"India's Own Moonland"

Leh Ladakh Tourism

Ladakh is a union territory in the Kashmir region of India. Formerly falling in the state of Jammu & Kashmir, Ladakh was administered a union territory on 31st October 2019. Extending from the Siachen Glacier to the main Great Himalayas, Ladakh is a land like no other. Dominated by dramatic landscapes, Ladakh is known as the world's coldest desert.

Stunning Gompas (Tibetan Buddhist monasteries), fluttering prayer flags, whitewashed stupas, Ladakh is a riot of intricate murals and red-robed monks. With a culture similar to the Tibetans, the people of Ladakh are friendly and welcoming to tourists.

Ladakh is divided into two districts: district Leh and district Kargil. The former district has a famous town, "Leh", and is a great tourist attraction because of its beautiful monasteries nearby, Shanti Stupa, cafes and Leh Bazaar defining the place's culture.

Ladakh is an adventure playground for rafting and high-altitude trekking. Note that Leh Ladakh is inaccessible by road outside the summer months. The route passes close altogether from around October to May, and the only way to reach is by air. Chadar trek on frozen Zanskar river takes place in January to the end of February.

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Must Know Before You Travel to Leh Ladakh

  • Leh Ladakh generally remains closed for more than 6 months from November to April or Mid-May due to heavy snowfall on the mountain passes. 
  • Inner Line Permits are no longer required to travel the inner line areas of Ladakh from August 2021 for Indian Nationals. However, Permits for International Tourists. 
However, those visiting Ladakh will still have to pay a green fee or environment fee of INR 400, a daily fee of INR 20 per person for wildlife protection, and a one-time fee of INR 100 towards the Red Cross Fund. This fee can be paid online or through your hotel or travel agent.

Other Things to Know:
  • Ladakh is a plastic-free union territory
  • Carry sufficient cash as there are no ATMs outside of Leh and sometimes these ATMs won't be operational due to bad weather and power issues
  • If you are traveling by flight, make sure you keep the first day for acclimatization in Leh before heading to other places like Pangong.
  • While traveling on the Leh-Manali Road and the Leh-Srinagar Road, Inner Line Permits are not required. However, they need to contribute to the Ecology Contribution Fund.

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Things to do in Leh Ladakh by Neighbourhood

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Permits for International Tourists

  • Foreigners will still need to obtain a Protected Area Permit (PAP) or Restricted Area Permit (RAP). This permit has to be applied to the Deputy Commissioner’s Office in Leh, with the required fees. Foreigners need to be in a group of two or more to apply for the Protected Area Permit (PAP) and it can be applied through a registered travel agent in Leh or through the official website of the Leh administration LAHDC. 
  • Government authorities launched a web portal http://lahdclehpermit.in/ on June 1, 2017, making it easier for travellers to obtain a permit. Also, a photocopy of a valid passport with a visa or OCI card is required to get this permit if you are an international tourist.
  • Visitors from Afghanistan, Bangladesh, China, Myanmar, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, are not eligible to obtain a permit from the Deputy Commissioner’s Office in Leh. They need to apply for an Inner Line Permit from the Ministry of Home Affairs in New Delhi. However, foreigners with a diplomatic passport or who are members of the United Nations need to apply for an Inner Line Permit from the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi
How to Apply: 
  1. Visit TIC Office, Opposite J&K Bank, Main Market, Leh to get permits signed and stamped. The timings of the office are 9.00 AM to 03:00 PM.
  2. The scrapping of ILP doesn't allow the movement to certain villages including the 'zero-km' villages near the border still remains accessible for the travellers.
  3. Indian travellers will be required to carry a valid ID proof while travelling to Ladakh

Ladakh - The Perfect Getaway For An Adventure Ride!

For someone who thrives on adventure and lives his life on the edge, Ladakh is their Mecca. There's nothing more satisfying than traversing such high peaks with nothing but daunting yet majestic snow-clad mountains in the backdrop. From bike riders to cycling enthusiasts, this is the place to test your endurance and skill.

For those who aren't afraid of the water, do not miss the river rafting in Zanskar river at the confluence of Indus and Zanskar. The price per person is around INR 1000 for the long-distance rafting. This is an absolutely unforgettable experience for people who seek thrills.

The largest city in this region is Leh and although this city has many monasteries, visit nearby cities like Nubra Valley, Pulu for magnificent views of the scenic beauty. Visit one of the highest motorable roads in the world- Khardung La while on your journey to the Nubra Valley.

Vehicle Permit

  • There is no vehicle permit for Ladakh. However, a Rohtang Pass permit is required by all vehicles, including cars and bikes when you are traveling in the direction of Manali to Leh. The cost of this permit is 50 INR. Rohtang Pass permit can be applied for online. The age of the vehicle should not be more than 10 years to be eligible for this permit.
  • To obtain a Rohtang Pass permit, you will need to provide various documents such as vehicle registration certificate, insurance certificate, pollution certificate (PUC), valid identity proof. Rohtang Pass permit can be obtained online through the this website.

Restaurants and Local Food in Leh Ladakh

Leh is a multicuisine city serving Indian, Tibetan, Chinese and even Korean. The cuisine here exhibits tints of these foreign influences. Visitors must try out the local dishes which almost define the cuisine here such as Thukpa (noodle soup) Tsampa, known in Ladakhi as Ngamphe (roasted barley flour), and Skyu which is a heavy pasta dish with plenty of veggies as well as the very popular and delicious Momos which are steamed dumplings stuffed with vegetables or meat.

Drinks include tea, coffee, beer and Chang which is an alcoholic beverage drunk specially on festive occasions.
View Top Restaurants in Leh Ladakh

Suggested Itinerary for Leh Ladakh

Day 1 - Explore the city of Leh:
On arrival, first, acclimatize yourself to the high altitude. In the afternoon you can explore the Leh Palace. It is an architectural masterpiece built in the 17th century by King Sengge Namgyal that offers stunning, panoramic views of the city. 
The Shanti Stupa which is a beautiful white-domed Buddhist stupa comes second on the list. You can enjoy the mesmerizing views of the surrounding hills from here and get an insight into the Buddhist tradition and culture as well.
Towards the evening, you can visit the Leh bazaar. Here you can take a leisurely stroll and enjoy the local culture and also splurge on traditional handicrafts, and special souvenirs, and try out local food from the stalls. 

Day 2 - Visit the Nubra Valley:
Nubra Valley is located in the northeastern region of Ladakh. On the way to the Nubra Valley, you will cross the Khardung La Pass, which is the world’s highest motorable pass.  It offers a picturesque view of the entire Himalayan range Here, you can also explore the Diskit Monastery which houses the Maitreya Buddha statue and is also one of the oldest and largest monasteries in Ladakh. The Famous Hunder Desert is also located here where you can opt for a double hump camel ride while exploring the place. Finally, you can spend the night in a guesthouse or a campsite at the Nubra Valley. 

Day 3 - Excursion at the Pangong Tso Lake:
Leave for the Pangong Tso Lake from Nubra Valley early in the morning as it takes at least 4-5 hours to reach the destination. Take the Shyok River route, as it provides the best scenery along the way. On reaching the destination, soak in the breathtaking views of this magnificent lake. Here, you can relax alongside the lake or even go on a short hike around the lake and explore the place. 

Day 4 - Return to Leh:
On arriving back at Leh, you can explore the rest of the must-visit places here. The Hall of Fame is located on the Kargil-Leh road and was built in memory of the martyrs who fought in the Kargil War. The Hemis Gompa, Thikshey Monastery, and the famous Rancho School from Three Idiots are definitely worth a visit here. From Leh, you can also visit the Tsomoriri Lake and stay a night at the Tsokar Camp.

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Leh Ladakh Photos

Leh Ladakh
Zanskar Valley

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FAQs on Leh Ladakh

What are the top hotels in Ladakh?

There are 263 in Ladakh which can be booked through Holidify. The most popular hotels in Ladakh are TIH New Antelope, Sangaylay palace, Leh Stumpa, Shakspo House, LONPO GUEST HOUSE, the crash pad. You can see all the hotels in Ladakh here

How much does a package cost for Ladakh?

The packages for Ladakh start at INR 8000 which can be further customized based on number of people, days, hotel category, vehicle type and customizations. You can have a look at all packages here

What is the best way to reach Ladakh?

Being a remote area, Ladakh is only traversable by air or road. The Leh city does not have any railway station of its own. However, there is an airport for the city and a highway too, that leads to Leh.
Read More

What is the local food in Ladakh?

Leh is a multicuisine city serving Indian, Tibetan, Chinese and even Korean. The cuisine here exhibits tints of these foreign influences. Visitors must try out the local dishes which almost define the cuisine here such as Thukpa, noodle soup;Tsampa, known in Ladakhi as Ngamphe (roasted barley flour), and Skyu which is a heavy pasta dish with plenty of veggies as well as the very popular and delicious Momos which are steamed dumplings stuffed with vegetables or meat.
Drinks include Tea, coffee, beer and Chang which is an alcoholic beverage drunk especially on festive occasions.
Read More

What is the best time to visit Ladakh?

The best time to visit Ladakh is in Summer (April - June) when the climate is pleasant here - the snow from winter having thawed. During the rest of the year, Manali-Leh highway is not functional and the only operational way is the Srinagar-Leh highway which also gets affected by occasional landslides. The Frozen River Trek, one of the most famous treks here, is organised in the months of December and January along river Zanskar. The only way to get to the Frozen River Trek Point is by flying to Leh.
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Who should visit Ladakh?

A superb destination for adventure freaks, bike riders, a group of friends seeking some activities and adventure. Not for leisure or relaxing.

What is not so good about Ladakh?

Climatic conditions and travel are a bit rough. Infants and older people may have some breathing problems. People living at low altitudes may take time to adapt to places at such heights.

What is famous about Ladakh?

Adventure destination. Snow clad mountains throughout the year with beautiful scenery in the backdrop.

What are the things to do in Ladakh?

The top things to do in Ladakh are Pangong Lake, Magnetic Hill, Leh Palace, Chadar Trek, Tso Moriri, Zanskar Valley. You can see all the places to visit in Ladakh here

What are the places near Ladakh?

The top places near to Ladakh are Hemis which is 28 km from Ladakh, Manali which is located 209 km from Ladakh, Mcleodganj which is located 249 km from Ladakh, Dalhousie which is located 248 km from Ladakh, Kasol which is located 230 km from Ladakh

Do foreigners need a permit to visit Ladakh?

Both domestic and foreign travellers must have a tourist permission to enter Ladakh. The government has implemented an Environment Fee and a Red Cross Fund Fee as the Ladakh tourism permit/Inner Line Permits for domestic and foreign visitors. To enter Ladakh's Inner Line Region, including Nubra Valley, Pangong Tso, and Tso Moriri, you need a permit.

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Popular Questions And Answers on Leh Ladakh

Q. From Manali can I get a rental car to travel and stop different pass before Leh?

Indian T.F.S

4 years ago
And also car costing plus suggestions
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Q. Is June best time to visit Ladakh?

VINIT SUVANIA

5 years ago
Yes
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Q. Which is the best time to visit Ladakh?

Rohit Shroff

5 years ago
https://www.holidify.com/places/ladakh/best-time-to-visit.html

Leh Ladakh Reviews

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Muskan Shah

5 years ago
I travelled to Ladakh in October. The weather was ideal and I witnessed snowfalls. Since Ladakh is at a high altitude, to avoid breathing problems take proper medication. The monasteries are a must v (Read More)isit. I visited Pangong Lake and was awestruck by its beauty. Do not leave without visiting this lake and try to spend a night in the tents near it.

Dazy Kumari

6 months ago
Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! (Read More) Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow! Wow!

Shikhar Gupta

3 years ago
Leh Ladakh is one of the place which is a dream destination for everyone who loves to travel a lot. From them I am one of them.. I
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