Road trip to Kashmir & Ladakh - inputs requested


Hi Yogesh ji,

I request your quick assistance to optimize the plan, preferably save days & time, and guide for important routes.

Vehicle: Toyota Fortuner 3L 4WD
Travellers: myself, wife and daughter (13y).

D1 Sat 28-Apr-18 mumbai to vadodara (home) 400
D2 Sun 29-Apr-18 vadodara to Churu / Mahansar 860
D3 Mon 30-Apr-18 Churu to Attari (WB) to Amritsar 530
D4 Tue 01-May-18 Amritsar - GWT - Patnitop 300
D5 Wed 02-May-18 Patnitop - Verinag - Anantnag to Pehalgam 180
D6 Thu 03-May-18 Pehalgam to Srinagar 90
D7 Fri 04-May-18 Srinagar - Gulmarg - Srinagar 110
D8 Sat 05-May-18 Srinagar - Sonamarg - Kargil 205
D9 Sun 06-May-18 Kargil - Randum 130
D10 Mon 07-May-18 Randum - Padum 110
D11 Tue 08-May-18 Padum - Zangla (BUFFER) 50
D12 Wed 09-May-18 Padum - Leh (apprx) 150
D13 Thu 10-May-18 Leh - DC Office Permit - nearby (Lamayuru, Alchi, MagneticHill, Guru PattharSaheb) 150
D14 Fri 11-May-18 Leh (Hemis, Shey etc) 150
D15 Sat 12-May-18 Leh - Panamik - Turtuk/Tyakshi - (further Siachin BC permit ??) 300
D16 Sun 13-May-18 Turtuk to Spangmik (Pangong Lake) 250
D17 Mon 14-May-18 Spangmik - MarsimikLa (BUFFER) 100
D18 Tue 15-May-18 Spangmik - Chushul (WarMem) - (RezangLa WarMem) to Hanle (route ??) 180
D19 Wed 16-May-18 Hanle to PhotiLa to Ryul Lake (KyunTso Lake) to TsoMorori (Karzok) 220
D20 Thu 17-May-18 Karzok - Tso Kar lake - TaglangLa - Sarchu 290
D21 Fri 18-May-18 Sarchu - Manali 230
D22 Sat 19-May-18 Manali to Ambala 340
D23 Sun 20-May-18 Manali - local (BUFFER) 100
D24 Mon 21-May-18 Ambala to Chittorgarh 790
D25 Tue 22-May-18 Chittorgarh to Vadodara 430
D26 Wed 23-May-18 vadodara - local (home) 50
D27 Thu 24-May-18 Vaodara - local (home) 50
D28 Fri 25-May-18 Vadodara to Mumbai 400

TOTAL KMS >>>>>>> 7145


Yogesh Sarkar

Padum to Leh is around 450 km and will take you at least 17-18 hours.

Lamayuru, Alchi etc. is best done en route to Leh from Kargil, since they fall en route. No point coming back the next day to attempt them.

Turtuk is one side of the Nubra Valley and Siachen Base Camp is on the other side of the valley. There is no permit for SBC. You need contacts in the army.

Turtuk to Spangmik is going to be a long drive.

Photi La isn’t open for civilians, just like Umling La. There is a big mess due to people going beyond their permit area (Hanle), read this thread for more info Hanle, Umling La & Chushul now off limits for civilians?.

Having said all this, how much fuel are you planning to carry? There are no fuel pumps between Diskit and Tandi on the route your will be taking i.e. you will need enough fuel for 940-950 km and that is without including Photi La etc.. Though fuel is available in black, quality can be bad.

Overall, this is a fairly hectic plan.


Well-Known Member
Some days of the plan are very ambitious and will be pretty hectic.
Even 200km in a day are tiring in that terrain. Anything more than that is an overkill and will take out enjoyment from the drive since you would be reaching destination very tired and almost no daylight left to explore.


New Member
I am sure you would be aware, that while driving long in plains is quite doable, however, driving short distances (even up to 70/100 Kms) can drain a lot of your energy due to extremely bad road conditions. Especially when travelling with a 13 yr old.
Though the itinerary is well drafted, you may look at leaving out a couple of places in the ladakh region for your next trip!
This would help ease out the plan and give some breathing space as well.


thanks colleagues for the important information, I will re-work the plan, essentially omit few places and reduce some days. will soon revert with revised plan for your kind inputs.

As for fuel, vehicle has 80L diesel tank, leaving 10L absolutely space, and consider 8.5 as FE = (70x8.5)=595 KM
I do have 2 x 20Ltr jerrycans = 40x8.5=340 KM.
(though I would prefer only 1 jerrycan to save luggage space)

let me revise the plan and see, thanks again.

btw, there exists a road from Rangdum - Padum - Zangla - (some off-road, but one section of Zanskar river is absent!) - Nimo - Leh, which mostly Army uses, not sure of road status & permits. Getting more details soon.

Yogesh Sarkar

That road is all-weather road to Ladakh, under construction since 1999. Supposed to be finished next year, at least connectivity wise and tarring and tunnel at Shingo La would come up much later.

In any case, no harm trying to go as far as you can on it.


I have bit revised my plan, kindly give valuable inputs :


Diesel carrying capacity still remains a concern!

PS: I have some connect, mostly in a week I will try to get info about Zanskar inner route to Leh direct, will share here.


Yogesh Sarkar

That is a fairly aggressive sightseeing plan in the first part, from Amritsar to Zanskar.

For Chushul, Hanle etc. you will need to visit the permit office at the Leh Main Market and in case they do not issue it, then you will have to head to DC Office. Online permit is only for travel agents and is issued for the normal sectors.

Getting permission for Marsimik La and Chumur would be extremely difficult, if not impossible. Photi La and Umling La are out of bound for civilians and if you attempt them, armed forces can either turn you back or detain you.

Kyun Tso and Salsal La are out of bound as well, unless you have permit for Chumur.


another plan, added more days (greedy to cover lots!)

Update : as of now the inner route for Zanskar to Leh (i.e. via Padum - Zangla - Nerak - Lamayuru - Nimu - Leh) is closed, and less chances for opening till late of this season.


thanks & regards,