Ladakh and Zanskar - 2 weeks in May

Chetan Kulkarni

Super User
An update on my plans and a question. After a lot of deliberations and externally forced changes, the revised plan now looks like.

Questions:
1) Is a visit to the Dah Hanu valley really special or is it more of a marketing gimmick?
2) Will it be a good idea to stay at a homestay in Chushul instead of two days at Spangmik?

Date Destination Accommodation at Night
17th May
Pick up from the airport and drop to the hotel. Stay at Srinagar. House boat/hotel.
18th May Srinagar to Kargil. Visit Sonamarg , Drass on the way. Stay at Kargil (Army Camp/Hotel)
19th May
Kargil to leh. Mulbek maitrey enroute Stay at Leh Hotel/Guest House
20th May Visit Leh palace, Shanti Stupa and Tsemo Gonpa. Rest for the whole day after a long journey. Easy tour around leh in the evening time. And get ready for the next day. Stay at Leh Hotel/Guest House
21st May Visit Sham Valley Stay at Leh Hotel/Guest House
22nd May Drive to Pangong lake. via Chang-la pass. Stay at Spangmik
23rd May
Stay at Pangong lake. Visit Chushul. Stay at Spangmik
24th May
Pangong lake to Tsomoriri lake. Via Tsaga la pass. Stay at Korzok, Tsomoriri lake. Camping.
25th May Tsomoriri lake to leh via Taklang-la pass. Visit Tsokar lake, Stay at Leh.
26th May
Drive from Leh to Hunder. On the way stop at Kharding-la pass. Visit Turtuk which is a village which boarders with Pakistan. At Hunder you can do camel riding. There are few double humped camel still remain in hunder. Sand dunes. Diskit monastery. Stay at Hunder
27th May
Drive from hunder to Warshi, visit Sumur monastery on the way. Drive along the Shyok river towards Siachen glacier and back to Hunder overnight .
OR
Visit Turtuk on this day if not possible on the earlier day.
Stay at Hunder
28th May
Drive from Hunder to Leh. Leh
29th May
Drive from Leh to Srinagar. Stay at Srinagar
30th May
Kargil to Srinagar Srinagar.
31st May
Back home Pune J
 

Pankaj Zarekar

Well-Known Member
If Pangong Tso is not your must visit list, you can spend extra day in Tsomoriri. It gives abundance of photographic possibilities. Plus you can spend some time near Kiyagar/Kyagar Tso.
Option of staying in Keylong is more practical than Sarchu. You get awesome view across the valley from your hotel room terrace. And you know where to look for sample photos of keylong ;-)
 

Pankaj Zarekar

Well-Known Member
As per your latest plans, you are trying to cover high altitude lakes Pangong/Tsomoriri at the initial stage. Keep a check on altitudes since you are traveling with kids.
 

Yogesh Sarkar

Administrator
1. I loved the place, not due to the natives, but due to the old world charm and beautiful natural beauty.

2. Chushul is a dusty ole’ town, with nothing around except locals. Spangmik on the other hand has Pangong Tso and the same also holds true for villages up to Khaltse, where you can find similar style home stays.

Instead of coming back to Pangong Tso, you can drive to Tso Moriri directly. It will take 10 hours to reach Tso Moriri from Pangong Tso.

Also instead of first visiting Pangong Tso, visit Nubra valley. It is lower in altitude and would help you acclimatize.

After visiting Warshi, stay at Sumur Village. It is a lovely village with a nice monastery.

Keep a buffer day in Srinagar.
 

Chetan Kulkarni

Super User
Thanks Yogesh and Pankaj. That is very helpful.

One follow up question on the altitudes. I had also planned Nubra before Pangong and Tso Moriri. But my army friend has done bookings as per the current itinerary. Is this plan a very high risk one or will three days planned in Leh be helpful enough to acclimatize?

I don't want to trouble him again unless it is necessary and hence seeking your advice.
 

Yogesh Sarkar

Administrator
Difference in sleeping altitude of Leh and Spangmik is around 3,000ft and on the Srinagar - Leh Highway, you will still be 500ft below Pangong Tso altitude at the highest point! So this would be the first day you will be climbing over 17,000ft and sleeping at 14,000ft. It may or may not create trouble, depends on individuals. However sleeping at lower altitude doesn't acclimatize you to higher altitude.
 
Guys the way it snowed this year I doubt that the Srinagar Leh Higway will be open in May. There is no way in the world that Pensila will be open so forget Zanskar. Baralacha La will not be opened in May like this year. The whole trip will be a disaster as per the timing is concerns.
 

Chetan Kulkarni

Super User
Guys the way it snowed this year I doubt that the Srinagar Leh Higway will be open in May. There is no way in the world that Pensila will be open so forget Zanskar. Baralacha La will not be opened in May like this year. The whole trip will be a disaster as per the timing is concerns.
@Harsh Raghuvanshi if Srinagar - Leh Highway does not opens, it would be a disaster for the whole of Ladakh, forget about tourism! Furthermore, He isn't doing Baralacha La.
Yogesh had already highlighted the risk of the Leh - Manali highway not being open and hence that was removed from the plan. Fingers crossed for the Leh - Srinagar highway to be open. I guess I will just wait and hope for the best :)
 
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