Living in a metropolitan city can drive you absolutely crazy sometimes. From a stressful work week to daily hassles like traffic and sometimes unpredictable weather conditions just add on to your stress like small bricks to a massive building of city life madness. Factors like these demand a getaway to a place where you are surrounded by only serenity and solitude; and probably to your surprise, this ideal getaway destination may not be so far away from you as you think.
Now picture a place where you are surrounded by sheer greenery everywhere you look, with valleys and waterfalls so peaceful that you find yourself automatically in a state of mental meditation, of beauty and tranquility which submerges you into a state of deep relaxation. If you are surrounded by these characteristics, welcome to Leh Ladakh.
To add on to this beautiful experience you are surrounded with friendly folks welcoming you with their customary greeting “Juley” everywhere you go. Now we could list a number of places down which would make you want to never leave (trust us when we say this), however, let us give you short glimpses of the places you must visit if you plan to make a trip down there.
1.Sarchu: Sarchu is a small camping ground just a few hours away from main city Leh, right on the Manali-Leh highway.
If you love the outdoors, Sarchu calls for your name. Plan an overnight camp at this destination and the night will surprise you. A sky filled with stars beyond your imagination, so much so that your mind would compel you to believe that you’re actually in a planetarium. All you would have to watch out for is the supremely cold weather which could go as low as minus 5 degrees Celsius. Brr!
2. Khardung-La: Situated approximately 18,000 ft above sea level, Khardung-La is the highest motorable road IN THE WORLD.
If you’ve lived all your life in a land of either heat or rains, you will absolutely love Khardung-La for the amount of white fluffs it has to offer, and we do not mean clouds or fog, but a ginormous amount of snow everywhere you look. Take your time to have some crazy snowball fights with your family or friends, build a snowman if you can and slide down the snowy mountains as much as you can, but do be careful of the altitude and adverse conditions that come by with the location.
3. Leh: Leh is a small city within the Ladakh region with a lot to offer. If you’re looking to take back some memories for your loved ones, Leh has you covered with a large number of shops offering very authentic Ladakhi souvenirs at bargainable prices. To add on to your experience, Leh also offers an opportunity to get your feet dirty and take part in some absolutely thrilling adventure sports such as river rafting on the Indus River which is an absolute must try for all thrill seekers.
Don’t worry though, the staff in charge of your rafting experience always keep your safety in priority and are always at your assistance in any tough situations you may encounter. If you’re looking to expand your cultural, religion and historical knowledge about Leh, be sure to plan a day visit to one of the many Tibetan monasteries, the Gurudwara and the very famous War Museum, each giving the thinker inside you an opportunity to ponder deeply over the history and philosophy that guides the region to a brilliant land it has become today.
4. Nubra Valley: Would you believe your eyes to find a desert situated amongst all the green and snow lands that you would’ve crossed in your paths while in Leh? No exaggeration!
Nubra Valley is a mix of massive sand dunes, with a small forest and also a tiny stream of river passing by confusing your mind with everything you’ve learnt about geography since school.
The best part: you’re never short of things to do out here. Take a camel ride if you haven’t done so already in your life, take photos in the traditional Ladakhi costume and if you still have time left in the day, do try the most traditional version of archery and test your aiming skills. Make sure to also visit the culturally submerged Ladakhi folk show which has shows running throughout the day. You will not be disappointed. If you’re a photography enthusiast, make sure to visit the Diskit Monastery to get a beautiful glimpse of Nubra’s landscape from up above. Guaranteed selfie moments. 🙂
5. Pangong Lake: Or as many would call it, the famous lake where the last scene of the Bollywood movie ‘3 Idiots’ was taken. Aside from all the movie-related memorabilia which you can take home, you can enjoy walking alongside this vast and absolutely pristine lake. If you missed out on camping at Sarchu, you can catch up by planning an overnight camp stay at Pangong. Now you may not be able to see a galaxy of stars at night, but you will wake up to a quiet, blissful and beautiful sunrise behind the mountains and the lake displaying an array of blue colour shades. Do note that you cannot actually get into the lake due to the level of sulphate content which has been known to make many’s hair white.
You will be stunned that this is just few of the many places we visited over our one week stay, each having their own special characteristic to ponder over and make you want to visit again. However, a few pointers to keep in mind while visiting Ladakh:
1. Make sure to pack a lot of warm clothes and supplies such as biscuits and eatables. The road trips are quite long and the cold weather can take quite a toll on your body.
2. Carry medicines for altitude sickness and do carry an oxygen cylinder if you suffer from breathing conditions such as asthma.
3. Not all terrains in Ladakh may be advisable to visit due to the weather conditions as the region is also known for landslides, so do not be disappointed if you’re unable to cover a location. Plan in advance for a longer trip if possible so that you can make the most of the experience.
4. Ladakh is a region of tight security due to the political situations so do comply with the requests of the officers if asked to do so in any situation. A small advice, avoid carrying a handbag as Leh Airport does not allow passengers traveling by air to do so due to security measures held in place.
If we have compelled you enough to make a trip down there, we do hope you have an amazing and wonderful experience just like us.