Offbeat Ladakh
Duration: (08 Nights | 09 Days)

Day 01: Arrive at Leh Airport
Day 02: Leh Local Sightseeing
Day 03: Leh to Nubra Valley via Khardung La (17,582 ft.)
Day 04: Nubra Valley: Excursion to Turtuk Village
Day 05: Nubra Valley to Tso Pangong via Shyok River
Day 06: Tso Pangong to Tso Moriri via Chushul
Day 07: Tso Moriri to Leh via Mahe Bridge/Chumathang
Day 08: Leh – Full day at own leisure (No Transport)
Day 09: 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
• 04 nights’ stay at Leh with breakfast
• 02 nights’ stay at Nubra Valley with dinner & breakfast
• 01-night stay at Tso Pangong with dinner & breakfast
• 01-night stay at Tso Moriri with dinner & breakfast
• Transportation: All sightseeing tours by Non-Ac Innova as per the itinerary
• Leh Airport pick-up & drop
• Protected Area Permits (PAP)
• Fuel, driver allowances
• All Applicable Taxes

Cost Excludes
• Taxi service on Day 08
• Air fare
• 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

Explore Leh & Sham Valley

Explore the gorgeous town of Leh and its beautiful stopovers. Most prominent among them is the Leh Palace. The ruins of this 350-year-old, 9 storey high Palace offer a breath-taking view of the city of Leh and its surroundings. 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 its influences on its infrastructure. The Shanti Stupa, Jama Masjid, Zorawar Fort, Gurudwara Shri Pathar Sahib, and Magnetic Hill all lie within 25 km of Leh’s radius. Also, within this radius is the Indian Army’s Hall of Fame. It is a monument dedicated to the soldiers who served, and/or perished on the borders during wartime.

The Sangam (Confluence of rivers) between the ice-cold Zanskar and the mighty Indus is incredible to watch. It’s gushing blue waters put on a stunning display of power. Once you’ve absorbed in all these wonderful sights you will return to Leh and spend the night there.

Day Three: Gateway to the World

Leh to Nubra Valley via Khardung La (17,582 ft.)

After an early breakfast, you’ll check-out & drive to super scenic Nubra Valley 10,000 ft. The road takes you through the world’s 11th highest motor-able pass, Khardung La (17,582 ft.) a place engulfed in fog and wrapped by snow-laden peaks. You will literally be on cloud 9 that day.

Descending from the high pass, you will drive through the barren beauty of Nubra Valley, with the aquamarine waters of Shyok River for company. On arrival, you’ll first visit Diskit Monastery. It is over 250 years old and is the oldest monastery in Nubra Valley. Next to that lies an imposing 100 feet statue of Maitreya Buddha, in its resplendent golden avatar. From here drive to the sand dunes at Hunder. Here you can spot the world-famous double-humped camels, one of the rarest mammals, lounging on the desert.

At night, step out of your cosy room and gaze at the sky. Ladakh is one of the best places to stargaze, thanks to the pollution-free environment.

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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 of 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 – DurbukTangste 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 MaanMerak – 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 the teacher of the translator Marpa are 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, the rest of the evening is at your own leisure.

Day Eight: Don’t Let It End

Leh: Day at own leisure (No Transport)

This is your last day on your Ladakh Adventure. Take this day to explore the small lanes of Leh by foot, try bouldering, river rafting or just go shopping and at Leh Market. You can try some local Ladakhi food which has much in common with Tibetan food, the most prominent foods being Thukpa (noodle soup), and Tsampa, known in Ladakhi as Ngampe (roasted barley flour).

A dish that is strictly Ladakhi is Skyu, a heavy pasta dish with root vegetables. As in other parts of Central Asia, tea in Ladakh is traditionally made with strong green tea, butter, and salt. It is mixed in a large churn and known as Gurgur Cha, after the sound, it makes when mixed. Sweet Tea (cha ngarmo) is common now, made in the Indian style with milk and sugar. Most of the surplus barley that is produced is fermented into chang, an alcoholic beverage drunk especially on festive occasions.

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Day Nine: 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.