Markha Valley Trek 5286m
Duration: (07 Nights | 08 Days)

Day 01: Arrive at Leh Airport
Day 02: Leh – Full day at own leisure (No Transport)
Day 03: Leh to Skiu drive & Trek to Sara (12 km/3-5 hr)
Day 04: Sara to Markha (10 km/3-5 hr)
Day 05: Markha to Hankar (11 km/3-5 hr)
Day 06: Hankar to Nimaling (11 km/5-8 hr)
Day 07: Nimaling to Chokdo via Kongmaru La 5260m (12 km/5-8 hr), drive to Leh
Day 08: Leh Airport Drop

• Two Famous Passes: Chang La (17,585 ft.) & Khardung La (17,582 ft.)
• Leh – Srinagar Highway up till Sangam
• Drive though some of the most scenic & remote routes of northern Himalayas
• Visit Turtuk Village, Rezang La War Memorial & Tso Kyagar
• Famous Palaces & Monasteries
• Leh (4N)
• Nubra Valley (2N)
• Pangong Lake (1N)
• Tso Moriri (1N)

Cost Includes
• Room category & accommodation as desired
• 03 nights’ stay at Leh with breakfast
• 04 nights’ stay in homestays during Markha Valley Trek
• Meals – dinner, breakfast & packed lunch included during the trek
• Trekking permits & wildlife entry fees
• Experienced guide for the entire duration of the trek
• Accommodation & meals cost for the guide
• Transportation: Leh to Skiu & Chokdo to Leh by Non-Ac Innova
• Leh Airport pick-up & drop
• Fuel, driver allowances
• All Applicable Taxes

Cost Excludes
• Taxi service on Day 02
• Air fare
• Porter/mule
• Entrance fee for monasteries/palaces, etc.
• Expenses of personal nature, such as laundry, telephone calls, room service, alcoholic beverages, mini bar charges, tips, portage, camera fees, room heater, etc.
• Any meals and services not specifically mentioned in the inclusions
• Any expense incurred or loss caused by reasons beyond our control such as bad weather, natural calamities (landslides, floods), flight delays / rescheduling / cancellations, any accidents / medical evacuations, riots/strikes/war/road blocks, & force majeure events, etc.
• Medical insurance/travel insurance/oxygen cylinder
• Additional sightseeing charges or extra usage of vehicle apart from the suggested itinerary

DETAILED ITINERARY
Day One: Tickets To Paradise

Arrive in Leh (Altitude 11,500 ft.)
You will arrive at the Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport (Leh Airport) which is nestled in the midst of The Mighty Himalayan Mountain Range. Leh Airport; one of the highest airports in the world is also considered to be one of the most scenic owing to its heavenly surroundings. It is encircled by immense golden brown, barren mountains which are truly a sight for sore eyes.

You will be warmly welcomed by Unplugged Life’s representative and transferred to your hotel in Leh City. The rest of the evening is for you to acclimatize yourself by casually strolling in and around your lodgings. Overnight stay at Leh City. The capital of Ladakh, at one time, was a major stop on the Asian “Silk Route”.

Day Two: On Vacation

Leh: Day at own leisure (No Transport)

Take this day to explore the small lanes of Leh by foot or just go shopping and eating at Leh Market. Remember NOT TO EXERT yourself as your body is still acclimatizing to the change in altitude.

The Leh Market is starkly different from its metropolitan counterparts. The shops here are small, colourful, and vibrant. It has a rare mix of western and native cultures which is unique to itself. Leh also boasts of a widely diverse population and shows their influences on its infrastructure.

Day Three: Text Me Later – I’m gone for a while

Leh to Skiu by Taxi (70 km/3-4 hours) and trek to Sara (12 km/3-5 hours)

You will be driving along the skilfully paved roadways crossing marvellous landscapes. Throughout the road, you will encounter military camps decorated with colourful big rocks around the camps. Do not miss Gurudwara Pathar Sahib on the right and Magnet Hill on the left as you move ahead.

The Stok Range remains on the right until it vanishes slowly when you reach Hemis National Park. You will be pleasantly surprised once you reach Sangam. Indus and Zanskar rivers, both bottle green, yet so unique, form the most spectacular confluence. This point is also famous as the starting end for rafting. Take a diversion here towards Chilling.

The surrounding view henceforth changes magically. The open terrain beside the road enters into the closed valley. Valley having stunning purple, black, grey shades of the mountains. Juniper and tall alpine trees will border the route as you cross the Zanskar River over green iron bridges. Take a deep breath once you get down at Chilling, as the walking will begin in a few minutes.

The trek ahead incepts with a steep ascent going through Zingchen Gorge. Amidst you will also cross the river on a trolley at Kaya-Do place. The trail many times comes across the river. Skiu will mark the first camping in the tents. It is located at the confluence of rivers Shgri Nala and Markha.

Skiu is largely divided into two sections, upper and lower village. Lower Skui has 12 houses quite close to each other. A small trudge, old monastery and ruins of a palace separate it from upper Skiu. There are small White Stupas and Mani Stones laid towards upper Skiu.

Markha River lies on the right of the village. Most of the places here offer homestays. Relax after a mini-trek, while looking forward to the upcoming trek.

Day Four: A Day in Baltistan

Nubra Valley: Excursion to Turtuk Village
After a hearty breakfast in the morning, you will head to Turtuk – the closest village to the LOC that tourists are allowed to visit.
You will be almost as far north as you can get in this country. Turtuk is the northernmost village of India. It is the only Balti Region under the Indian Administration and was under Pakistan’s control until 1971.
Geographically, Turtuk lies in the Baltistan Region and is one among four such villages in India, the other three being Tyakshi, Chalunkha & Thang after which Pakistan’s Gilgit-Baltistan begins. Although the primary trade of Turtuk is agriculture, you will see intricate handicrafts around the village.
Turtuk is as green a village as it gets, which is quite unusual for a barren landscape like Ladakh. The abundance of Apricot trees is put to good use by making an authentic stew from it. Do try it before heading back to Hunder for the night, it is just divine.

Day Five: Along the Shyok River

Nubra Valley to Tso Pangong (13,943 ft.) via Shyok River
After an early breakfast, drive towards Tso Pangong 13,943 ft. via Shyok. This route goes via Agham – Shyok Village – Durbuk – Tangste to reach Pangong Tso. The first glimpse of the tranquil, azure blue waters, and shaky lakeshore of Tso Pangong remains etched in the memory of tourists.
Tso Pangong has the most crystal clear, cerulean blue waters ever seen. The lake plays host to migratory bird families during mating seasons. Bar-headed Geese and Brahmani Ducks are two of the most prominently found birds here. The rare, endangered, and usually elusive Black-necked Cranes are also found here. What will surprise you is that the lake lies only partially in India, its major chunk lying in China.
In winter the entire lake freezes to the point where you can walk over it. Upon arrival you’ll check-in at the guest house/camp and spend the rest of the evening strolling around the lake, taking in the beautiful scenery.

Day Six: Losing Sight of the City Life

Tso Pangong to Tso Moriri (14,835 ft.) via Chushul
After an early breakfast drive towards Tso Moriri which is at an altitude of 14,835 ft. above sea level. This route goes via Maan – Merak – Chushul – Rezang La – Nyoma – Tso Kyagar to reach Tso Moriri. This will be one of the most scenic drives on your Ladakh Adventure as you drive parallel to Tso Pangong through the valley soaking in the true beauty of Pangong Lake and its changing hues.

On your way you will stop at Rezang La War Memorial. It is the site of the last stand of the 13 Kumaon, during the Sino-Indian War in 1962. From here, your next stop is Kyagar Tso, one of those small, yet sublime lakes that are usually not on the tourist radar. Its emerald waters and reflections of the surrounding hillocks are certainly worth a few shots. It’s a non-stop drive to Tso Moriri after that.

Flanked by golden brown mountains on one side and lush green plains on the other, Tso Moriri is nothing short of surreal. It is one of those few places where you can spot the rare and endangered black-necked cranes. Needless to say, shutterbugs will have a gala time here. After you have basked in the beauty of this place, you’ll check into your camp/hotel for the night.

Day Seven: Different Worlds

Tso Moriri to Leh via Chumathang
After breakfast, take some parting shots with the lake. You will then head back to Leh via Mahe Bridge /Chumathang.

On your way back, you’ll stop at Hemis Monastery which existed before the 11th century. Naropa, the pupil of the yogi Tilopa, and teacher of the translator Marpa is connected with this monastery. It is one of the oldest and richest monasteries in all of Ladakh and is definitely a must visit on your Ladakh Adventure.

From here, you will drive to Thiksey Monastery. It is located on the top of the hill. It is very famous for its similarity with Potala Palace of Lhasa. This monastery is famous for pilgrim activities, architectural elements, sightseeing and exploration. The monastery has an interesting anecdote of how it was built in this exact location.

Your last stop is the Druk Padma Karpo School. This is the school we saw in the movie ‘3 idiots’. Rancho’s School. You’ll visit Rancho’s Café, a café just outside the school campus. You can have some crunchy snacks and coffee while enjoying the memorabilia from the movie that is kept in the café.
From here, it’s a non-stop drive to your hotel in Leh, rest of the evening is at your own leisure.

Day Eight: Wrapping Up

Depart Leh: Transfer to Airport
In the morning, you’ll be driven to the airport where you’ll board the flight to your onward destination.