Travelling is an activity that allows to explore oneself way beyond than what is possible via normal reach. For instance, travelling to an ocean destination lets you discover your party animal while other destinations allow you to connect with nature. Similarly, there is something special about mountains that puts them on the top ranks in every travel diaries and wishlist. The calm, the chill, the climate, the views everything about hills is a great attraction. In my opinion, what lures most is the break from the hustle of the urban cities which cannot be experienced more at any other destination than in Mountains, be it a sea or a pilgrim. Being thousands of meters above the sea level, covered with mesmerizing views from all sides and the calm in the weather all combines to give you an unmatched experience. No matter if you are a lonely backpacker who travel often or the one who travel less but travel big, all of us have some wishlist destination that are a must and certainly there are some common names amongst all of the lists. And one name that we are certain belongs to that list is Leh Ladakh.
Yeah, everybody has some must visit once in lifetime destinations and leh ladakh is a popular name for that and this is why we are going to discuss everything about this district because surely, many of you might be scratching your heads in thinking what is precisely so special about Leh Ladakh that almost everyone wants to travel here. Leh Ladakh tour packages have become very popular lately amongst all different kinds of travelers. In a nutshell, everything that makes mountains so special to visit is even better at leh ladakh but that does not give it all away and there a lot other reason which adds upto to make the experience unmatchable. Everything from best time to travel this city, best places to visit in leh ladakh, how to get the cheapest leh ladakh tour packages, what is the best food and where to get it and so on. Anything that would constitute in making the most out of your leh ladakh holiday package will be covered in this long article. So, grab a cup of coffee and sit tight with a little bit of attention as we go along the discussion and without any further ado, let us get started.
About this Magnificent District
In this section we’re going to focus our discussion towards the culture and location of this place as these two categories adds a lot to the beauty of this place. So, located in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, the cold desert of Leh is the second largest district of the country with an expanse of more than 45000 km2 and is second only to another beautiful desert which is the Kutch in Gujarat. Coming over to the Ladakh, this territory is home to the Indo-Aryan and Tibetan descent and is also the town in which leh is located.
As mentioned, the major inhabitants of this districts are Tibetan people and Buddhism is the major religion which is practiced here. One key attraction that rises from the Buddhist influence is the presence of Monasteries. These monasteries are centers that houses a rare, beautiful and rich Buddhist relic and are easily top picks for the most beautiful places in ladakh due to their location on top of hills. Sparse population, culture and lifestyle has become the major attraction over the years for the tourists and has played a major economic role for the Leh Ladakh tourism.
Most of the destinations to visit in this area are located at a height of over 10,000 feet above the sea level. So, one of the first important thing to be prepared for during the trip should be acclimatization.
How to reach Leh Ladakh?
Leh Ladakh is amongst the highest motorable places but that doesn’t take away the connectivity to this place. It is well connected to major Indian cities via all three modes of transport i.e. Rail, Road and Air.
● By Rail: The nearest Railway station to Leh is located 708kms way which is Jammu Tawi. You can easily get a Taxi or a Bus service which would take around 15 hours to arrive at your destination.
● By Air: Kushok Bakula Rimpochee is the highest situated airport in the country at 3256m from the sea level and is well connected to major cities including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Jammu and Srinagar. For an international traveler, arriving at one of the connected major city would be the first step to reach this destination.
● By Road: Most of the travel stories you had heard about Leh Ladakh would be from road travelers as the best experience for this trip would be gathered on the wheels. Whether you choose manali-Leh highway or the Srinagar-leh Highway, either way you will be delighted by some of the most picturesque views you will come across along the journey. Before all that do keep in mind to get your vehicle ready and fit to be driven around these passes or you will be better off in renting a bike where you have plethora of options to choose from. Rather it has kinda become a culture to go on a bike trip to leh ladakh amongst frequent travelers.
The Best time and the Best places to visit Leh Ladakh
One trip might not be enough to experience all the beauty which is trapped in the womb of Leh Ladakh. This cold desert stretches very long into the mountainous region and has a variety of categories of places to visit from lakes to glaciers to mountain passes to temples. For the trek lovers, this place is the closest place to heaven on earth. One of the most unique characteristic about the journey is that there is not a lot of specific destinations to visit, it is more like that your journey is your destination. Still, if you want some recommendations that you should visit, then let us start from some lakes and then we’ll head on to next category. Pangong Tso Lake is one the most popular places to visit due to its ability to change color every hour of the day ranging its spectrum from emerald green to varying tints of blues and violets. Other beautiful lakes are Tsomoriri Lake and Tsokar Lake.
Also known as the Land of passes, Ladakh is adobe of high altitude mesmerizing mountain passes that will definitely leave you awestruck with their heavenly views. Some of the popular names from this category include Chang La, Fotu La, Namika La, Zoji La, Tanglangla pass and many more.
One quick tip to remember is that the best time to visit Leh Ladakh is during the summer months and do pack some wind cheaters to bear the blistering cold winds and also, best tour packages for leh ladakh can be bought during the months of March to October.
Food Culture in Ladakh
As far as food culture of ladakh is concerned, you can find come across a large variety of cuisines including Tibetan, Korean, Continental, Chinese and Indian. The common native ingredients are dry fruits like walnuts, almonds, raisins and spices like saunf, clove, saffron, chillies, dry ginger, cinnamon and cardamom. Ladakh agriculture is mostly based on Rice, pumpkin, potatoes and beans cultivations.
Some dishes that should definitely try during your journey are mentioned below separately for vegetarian and non-vegetarian readers.
● Roghan Josh
● Marchwangan Korma
● Non-veg Momos
● Lotus Root
● Veg Momos
● Apricot Jam
● Korma Sag
● Dum-Aloo and Chaman
Legal permits Required
Since, leh ladakh shares border with three major regions which are India, China and Tibet, therefore, a lot of places which you probably would not like to eliminate from your leh ladakh tour package requires a protect area permit (pap). But this permit is only required by the international tourists while the leh ladakh holiday package for Indian tourist does not require to include any such permit and any valid photo ID will suffice to prove your Indian nationality.
Budget for all what we have discussed so far
Leh ladakh tour packages can easily be made cheaper by making cost cuttings in some places but try not be penny-pincher. Now, the best tour packages for leh ladakh will cost you around 30,000INR -40,000INR inclusive of the flight, stay, food and the sightseeing. For those who are thinking of a road trip, a similar budget will be for your best tour package for leh ladakh.
So, we have to an end of this discussion where we covered a lot of things about the tour packages for leh ladakh. This cold desert packs a lot of great experiences in its womb and the warmth you get in the cold climate of leh ladakh is quite unmatchable. Everything here attracts you from the culture, the food, the mountain passes and the lakes. In short, whenever I would like to devote my life to meditation like saints, I would definitely choose this place for the cause but I don’t think that I would ever devote my whole life to meditation. All in all, no matter if you are a frequent lonely backpacker or less frequent traveler, visiting here once in a lifetime is somewhat a must.