Take a week off from your busy life and explore the best sites and sounds of Ladakh. Experience the mystical aura of the vast region adorned with high altitude land-locked lakes amidst majestic mountain ranges, smiling people, and the living heritage of quaint villages and centuries-old hilltop monasteries.
Day-1 Arrival Leh (Alt: 11500 / 3505 M) - Acclimatization / Orientation
Arrive Leh and transfer to the hotel. After welcome drinks / breakfast, take complete rest for acclimatization to the high altitude. In the late afternoon, visit the city centre and take leisurely walk through the main market for general orientation. Wind up the tour with a visit to the Shanti Stupa , a prominent landmark perched upon a hillock commanding panoramic views of the valley. Overnight at Leh.
Day-2 In Leh: Visit Monasteries & Palaces / 110 kms / 4 hours
After breakfast, proceed to explore the Indus Valley attractions starting from dramatically located Thiksey M onastery a major Gelukpa foundation dating from the 16 th century. Thereafter drive on to visit the 17 th century Hemis Monastery, biggest monastery and principal seat of the Drukpa-Kargyut monastic order in the Ladakh region. On the way back from Hemis, you may walk up the hill at Shey to visit the Shey Palace where the main attractions are the two gigantic copper-gilt Buddha statues installed during the mid - 17 th century. Thereafter, visit the Druk Padma School (Rancho School) at Shey, if interested.
Before returning to Leh, drive across the Indus to visit the Stok Palace (Circa 1825 AD), present residence of former royal family of Ladakh. The main attraction here is the museum displaying the priceless collections of art & artefacts of the royal family. Overnight at Leh.
Day-3 Leh- Khardongla - Nubra Valley / 125 kms / 4-5 hours
After breakfast leave for Nubra Valley , driving across Khardong-la (alt: 18,380 ft.), highest motorable pass in the world. Nubra Valley lies between the Karakoram & Ladakh ranges at an average altitude of 10,000 ft. Till closure of the trans-Karakoram trade route by the Chinese in 1949, Nubra Valley was a busy trade corridor on the Central Asian trade route.
Reach Deskit / Hunder in the afternoon and explore the area and the white Sand Dunes where you can also take a short camel Safari on the double-humped Bactrian camel found here (optional service). Overnight at a deluxe camp or hotel.
Day-4 Nubra Valley – Khardongla - Leh / 125 kms / 4 - 5 hours
After breakfast, explore Deskit (headquarters of Nubra valley) and then drive up the hillside to visit the 15 th century DeskitMonastery dramatically located on a rock promontory overlooking the valley. En-route, you can visit the gigantic image of Maitreya Buddha (32 mtrs) seated out on a hillock which was installed in 2010. Later return to Leh via Khardongla, reaching in the afternoon. Overnight at Leh.
Day-5 In Leh: Excursion to Pangong Lake / 150 kms /one way / 5-6 hours
After early breakfast leave for Pangong Lake via Chang-la pass (alt: 17370 ft. / 5486 meters - 3 rd highest motorable pass in the world). Pangong Lake (alt:14,500 ft.), largest brackish water lake of Asia, is4-5 kms wide and about 135 kms long of which about two-third portion lies on the other side of the Indo-China border. After sightseeing at the lake, drive back to Leh, reaching by the evening. Overnight at the hotel.
Day-6 In Leh: Visit Alchi / Likir (Sham Valley) Circuit /160 kms round trip / 4-5 hours
After breakfast proceed to explore the Sham Valley circuit, driving all the way Alchi and visit the 11 th century AlchiChoskor , oldest surviving monastic complex of Ladakh and famous for its ancient wall frescoes and architecture – now a UNESCO listed heritage site. While returning to Leh, visit the 14 th century LikirMonastery , where you will also admire a recently installed colossal image of the Maitreya Buddha seated out in the open. Thereafter drive on to Leh, en-route visiting Sangam (confluence of Indus & Zanskar Rivers), Magnetic Point , GurudwaraPatharSahib and Hall of Fame (museum of military heritage). Overnight at Leh.
Day-7 Departure Leh: Transfer to Airport
Early morning transfer to the airport for taking the flight back home.
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