Discover the Captivating Wonders of Ladakh: 10 Reasons to Visit | OurGuest

Top 10 Reasons to visit Ladakh

Jul 10th, 2024

Ladakh is a destination that offers something for everyone – from natural beauty and adventure to culture and history. It is on the bucket list of every traveler in India, especially so after being featured in the popular Aamir Khan movie three idiots.There is something magical about Ladakh. It is a mystical land that draws tourists with its charm, rich cultural heritage, and unreal natural beauty. From rocky mountain ranges, snow-covered peaks to scenic valleys, beautiful glistening lakes, blue skies, star gazing at night to loads of adventure, Leh Ladakh has them all. 

Listed below are the top 10 reasons why travelers should definitely visit Ladakh:

1. Ladakh is home to some of the most stunning lakes in the world: Pangong Lake, with its ever-changing shades of blue, and Tso Moriri Lake, surrounded by snow-capped peaks, are just two examples of Ladakh's pristine water bodies.

2. To visit the 3 highest motorable passes in the world:

1st - Khardung La (18,380 ft)
2nd - Chang La (17,586 ft)
3rd - Tanglang La (17,480 ft)

3. Take camel rides in the Sand dunes of Hunder Village:  The Hunder Sand Dunes in Nubra Valley is surrounded by a magnificent Himalayan cold desert and offers a unique and picturesque setting for camel rides. The best experience is the ride on the double-humped Bactrian camels, which are remnants of the old trade route used by merchants on the Silk Road. These camels are shorter in height compared to regular camels, with two humps and a thick fur coat that makes them well-suited for the cold, dry climate. The best time to visit is during the evening, as the setting sun casts a warm glow over the sand dunes, creating a fairytale-like atmosphere.

4. Scenic Monasteries with Amazing Ancient Architecture: Influenced by Tibetan and Buddhist cultures, there are many colourful Monasteries and Gompas you will find around Leh and Ladakh.Some of the monasteries to visit in Leh are Hemis Monastery, Spituk Monastery, Phyang Monastery, Thiksey Monastery, Shey Gompa and Stok Gompa, 

5. Star Gazing at Hanle: Ladakh is one of the best places in India for stargazing due to its high altitude, low humidity, and minimal light pollution.  Hanle,in Ladakh, is home to the Indian Astronomical Observatory (IAO), one of the highest observatories in the world at 14,764 feet. It has advanced telescopes for viewing celestial events. Hanle has been designated as India's first "dark sky reserve" to promote astrotourism and reduce light pollution

6. Try out the Delectable local cuisine: Leh-Ladakh’s food culture, passed down over centuries, tells a heartwarming story of hardship and resourcefulness. Be sure to try out the Butter tea, Sea buckthorn juice, Chang, Khura, Khamir, Holkur, Tsampa, Apricot jam, Logo Momos, Thukpa, Thenthuk, Mokthuk, Chutagi and much more.

7. Trekking and Rafting Adventure: Ladakh is a paradise for trekkers as there are many beautiful treks that guests can do. Snow Leopard Trek, Markha Valley Trek, Lamayuru to Chilling Trek, and Ripchar Valley Trek are a few. Apart from trekking, there are many other adventurous activities one can indulge in including River Rafting at Zanskar River which combines the thrill of navigating the Zanskar River with the breathtaking beauty of the surrounding Himalayan landscape.

8. To experience the local culture and very friendly locals: A smile on every face and a ‘Julay’ on every lip, Ladakh is one of the friendliest parts of India. People serve not for money but with an honesty and hospitality that is heartwarming

9. Click some great photographs: Anywhere you look in Ladakh, just click and it will be one of the best shots you will take in your life. The stark blue sky against the naked landscape, the starry night sky against the silhouette of the mountains, the photogenic bridges standing bravely over bursting water streams are all the stuff of imagination. In Ladakh, it will all fall in place and make a great picture. So, if you want to test your photography skills, don't miss Ladakh

10. Attend the colorful Festivals: The festivals of Ladakh offer an unparalleled window into the region's unique culture, spirituality, and way of life. Attending these events is an immersive and unforgettable experience for any traveler. Ladakh's festivals are often centered around its ancient Buddhist monasteries, which are architectural marvels in themselves. Visiting during a festival allows you to see these sites come alive with rituals and celebrations. You can witness traditional music, dance, and rituals performed by locals in an authentic setting. Festivals showcase Ladakh's traditional cuisine, including dishes like momos, thukpa, and butter tea, as well as local handicrafts and textiles.

Where to stay in Ladakh:

Slow Garden Homestay in Ladakh is tucked away in a quiet street (but still close to the city center), with a beautiful garden, with plenty of flowers, apple trees and a vegetable patch. The right mix of comfort combined with the serene calmness and beauty is what makes the stay a truly relaxing experience. It is run by Gyatso and Aishwarya who offer great hospitality and some delicious food.

Best time to visit Ladakh:

Ladakh is best visited during the summer months, from May to September, when the weather is relatively mild and most of the region's attractions are accessible

How to reach Ladakh:

By Air:
Flying to Ladakh is the quickest and most comfortable option. Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport in Leh is well-connected with daily flights from Delhi, Srinagar, Jammu, Chandigarh, Mumbai, and Kolkata. The scenic flight from Delhi takes 1.5 hours. 

By Road:
Ladakh can also be reached by road via two routes:

Manali (Himachal Pradesh) to Leh: This 494 km route takes 2 grueling days with an overnight stop. It crosses high mountain passes like Taglang La (5,328m) and Rohtang La. The road is open from June to October.

Srinagar (Kashmir) to Leh: This 434 km route takes a similar amount of time. Both routes can be done by hiring a cab, jeep, or taking a bus

Written by Pintso Gyatso: Unveiling the Hidden Gems of the Himalayas
Pintso, a native of Gangtok, Sikkim, isn't just a travel writer – he's a seasoned explorer. Years spent trekking and mountain biking across the region honed his intimate knowledge of Sikkim and Darjeeling's hidden treasures.
Co-founding OurGuest, Pintso's passion extends beyond travel. He champions sustainable tourism, working with local homestays and communities to create enriching experiences that benefit both travelers and the region. From building eco-lodges to collaborating with local guides, Pintso's expertise ensures you discover the authentic Northeast India, one adventure at a time. 

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