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Kashmir, often likened to a jeweled crown on India's map, showcases its diverse beauty through changing seasons. Surrounded by the Great Himalayan Range and the Pir Panjal, Kashmir boasts picturesque valleys, orchards, and serene lakes like Srinagar's lily-laden waters at 1585 meters above sea level.

Moving towards Ladakh, known as "The Last Shangrila," the landscape transforms into a high-altitude desert framed by the Karakoram and Great Himalayan ranges. This region, shaped by geological forces millions of years ago, was once covered by vast lakes, leaving remnants like the Tso-moriri, Tso-kar, and Pangong-Tso lakes on the south-east plateau.

The Himalayas on Wheels journey spans approximately 750 km, traversing the Eastern, Central, and Western Himalayas and their distinct zones like the Shivalik, Lower Himalayas, High Himalayas, and Trans Himalayas. Notably, the tour crosses five high passes including Zoji La (3529 m), Fotu La (4108 m), Namika La (3718 m), Chang-La (5360 m), and Khardungla (5360 m), offering a firsthand experience of the Himalayan formation and its majestic heights.

The Himalayas on Wheels journey from Kashmir to Ladakh offers a captivating experience

Itineraries

Day 1

ARRIVE DELHI – SRINAGAR INTERNATIONAL & DOMESTIC FLIGHT (D)

Upon arrival at Delhi airport, proceed to the domestic terminal to catch your scheduled flight to Srinagar. Situated in the heart of the Kashmir valley at an elevation of 1,730 meters above sea level, Srinagar stretches along both banks of the Jhelum River. Its scenic beauty is accentuated by the Dal and Nagin lakes, creating a picturesque backdrop. With its pleasant climate throughout the year and the captivating changes of seasons, Srinagar remains a charming destination for visitors. Upon reaching Srinagar, transfer to your prearranged Deluxe Houseboat moored on the lake.

Day 2

GULMARG EXCURSION (125 Km BLD)

After breakfast at the Houseboat, embark on a road journey to Gulmarg, renowned as one of the most exquisite summer retreats in the Kashmir valley. This scenic town is famous for its golf course in the summer months and transforms into a popular ski resort during winter. Revel in the natural beauty of the snow-clad mountains and picturesque landscapes. Experience the breathtaking Gondola ride (Cable car) from Gulmarg to Kongdoor, enjoying the first leg of this scenic journey.

In the afternoon, return to Srinagar and take a leisurely stroll through the charming alleys and small streets of the town, immersing yourself in the local way of life. Conclude your day with a delicious dinner served at your Houseboat, overlooking the serene waters.

Day 3

SRINAGAR - SONAMARG - KARGIL (2676m) (210 km, 5-7 hours BLD)

After breakfast, embark on a spectacular journey to Sonamarg by car, covering approximately 80 km in about 2.5 hours through rural landscapes. Witness the diverse facets of countryside life as you drive through picturesque scenes. From Sonamarg, continue your drive towards the first pass on the route, the Zojila Pass (3529 m), which dramatically marks the boundary between Kashmir and Ladakh. The transition from dense green forests to barren, multi-colored mountains of stark beauty is awe-inspiring.

En route, pass through Drass Town, known as the second coldest inhabited place in the world, where you'll experience a sudden shift in landscape from lush greenery to barren Himalayan mountain ranges. Make a quick photo stop at Moonland before continuing your journey to Alchi. In the evening, visit the Alchi Monastery, founded in the 11th century by the renowned Monk and Translator, Rinchen Zangpo.

Afterward, drive to Leh for an overnight stay, taking in the mesmerizing landscapes along the way.

Day 4

KARGIL - LAMAYURU - LEH (3500m) (216 Km, around 5-6 hours drive BLD)

After breakfast, embark on a drive to Alchi, making a stop at Mulbeck along the way. Here, you'll find a 1400-year-old image of Maitreya, the future Buddha, positioned atop a massive rock. This image symbolizes Buddhism's triumph over Bonism, marking the end of sacrificial practices involving human and animal lives.

Continue your journey by driving over Fotula Pass (4108 m) and Namikala Pass (3718 m), which are the highest points on the Leh-Srinagar road. En route, visit Lamayuru monastery and Naropa Cave. Lamayuru monastery, nestled amidst majestic scenery, is one of the most significant gompas in the region. This 900-year-old monastery houses the image of Chenrezig, the God of Compassion and Mercy, with the Dalai Lama believed to be a reincarnation of this deity.

Day 5

LEH (3500m) ACCLIMATISATION/ EXPLORATION (BLD)

Spend a day exploring the surroundings of Leh town. Begin with a walk to Shanti Stupa, known for its serene atmosphere and panoramic views. Afterward, take a stroll to Leh Palace, a historic marvel offering insights into Leh's rich heritage.

While in Leh, indulge in shopping for exquisite turquoise and silver jewelry, renowned for their Tibetan and Burmese origins. The Main Market in Leh is a treasure trove for shoppers, with Ladakh Art Palace and Lhasa Embroidery being must-visit spots. The Tibetan Refugee Market on Old Leh Road is another fantastic destination for unique finds.

For authentic Tibetan-Ladakhi art, consider visiting the Government Emporium. Here, you can discover a range of souvenirs such as Thangka paintings, small prayer wheels, melodious music bowls, traditional Ladakhi carpets, rugs, as well as elegant shawls and stoles.

Day 6

LEH – KHARDUNGLA – DESKIT (3144m) (130 km, 4 hours BLD)

After a delightful breakfast at your hotel, embark on a scenic drive to Nubra Valley via Khardungla Pass, renowned as the highest motorable road globally at 5360 meters. From Khardungla, soak in the breathtaking views of the Indus Valley and the majestic Karakoram ranges, provided the weather remains exceptionally clear. Descend from Khardungla to Nubra Valley, where you'll discover a unique landscape.

In the afternoon, take a leisurely stroll to a small sand dune in Hunder, offering an opportunity to enjoy a camel ride on the famous two-hump camels exclusive to Nubra Valley. The domesticated Bactrian camel, with its dual humps, has been a crucial pack animal in the inner Asian regions since ancient times, adding a touch of authenticity to your experience.

Day 7

DESKIT – SHYOK – PNAGONG LAKE (227 km, around 7 hours drive BLD)

Experience the serene beauty of a sunrise at a local monastery, accompanied by the soothing chants of morning prayers. After this spiritual start, embark on a picturesque drive along the Shyok River towards Khalser. Here, take a detour from the Khardungla road and continue along the enchanting Shyok Valley until you reach the village of Shyok.

Prepare for an adventurous journey as you navigate a pebbled path, adding thrill to your ride with several crossings over the Shyok River. Eventually, you'll reconnect with the main Leh to Pangong route at Durbuk and proceed towards Tangse. This quaint village requires a stop for security checks and boasts an ancient temple among its attractions.

The highlight of this circuit is the Pangong Lake, nestled at an elevation of 14,000 feet (4,267 m). The reflections of the surrounding landscapes on the lake's surface are mesmerizing, with the lake's color transforming throughout the day. Your overnight stay will be at a camp, providing an immersive experience amidst this captivating natural setting.

Day 8

PANGONG LAKE – HEMIS – LEH (173 km, 4-5 hours + 2-3 hour visit BLD)

Witness the breathtaking sunrise at Pangong Lake to start your day. After soaking in the mesmerizing views, begin your journey back to Leh, retracing your route over the Chang-La Pass. En route, make a stop at Hemis monastery, a must-visit destination in Ladakh.

Hemis monastery is renowned for its grandeur, housing one of the largest and most significant collections of Buddhist artifacts. Explore its impressive library, well-preserved wall paintings depicting Buddhist teachings, and exquisite Buddha figures that showcase the region's rich cultural heritage.

Upon reaching Leh, check into your hotel and unwind. In the evening, take some time to wander through the local market, where you can indulge in some last-minute shopping and soak in the vibrant atmosphere of Leh. Enjoy a comfortable overnight stay at your hotel, reflecting on the memorable experiences of your Ladakh journey.

Day 9

LEH FREE DAY FOR OWN ACTIVITIES (BLD)

Spend another delightful day exploring Leh town at your leisure. Take your time to indulge in shopping and immerse yourself in the local markets, charming alleys, and bustling bazaars. Use this opportunity to complete any last-minute shopping or pick up souvenirs to cherish from your Ladakh trip.

Enjoy a leisurely evening back at your hotel in Leh, unwinding and reminiscing about your memorable experiences during your stay in this enchanting town.

Day 10

LEH – DELHI – FLY HOME DOMESTIC/INTERNATIONAL FLIGHTS (B)

Early in the morning, you'll be transferred to the airport for your scheduled flight to Delhi. Upon arrival in Delhi, take a tour around the city to explore its attractions. You'll have a free day for your own activities or shopping in Delhi, allowing you to soak in the vibrant atmosphere of the capital city.

Later, ensure you're at the airport in time for your flight back to Singapore, concluding your memorable journey through India's enchanting landscapes and cultural treasures.

  • Airport transfers and all transport costs in chartered transport as per the itinerary including 5 persons per MPV from Srinagar to Leh airport. 
  • Hotels as indicated in the itinerary with all meals provided in hotels, restaurants and food stall along the route.
    • Srinagar: Deluxe Houseboat 
    • Kargil: Zojila Residency
    • Leh: Spic n Span
    • Nubra: Hotel Stendel 
    • Pangong: 100 Sky Camp
      (Hotels Subject to availability)
  • Cable Car Ride from Gulmarg to Kangdoor and Small boat (Shikara) Ride at Dal Lake.
  • 1000 ml of bottled water per person per day.
  • All monastery entrance charges and all other entrance charges as per the itinerary.
  • 1 local Manager* from Srinagar houseboat to Leh.
  • International & Domestic Airfares
  • All expenses of personal nature like drinks, tips telephone calls etc.
  • Any other expenses paid due to any change in dates and itinerary.
  •  Travel, medical & evacuation insurance or any expenses associated with medical and evacuation expenses if any.

Tipping guideline provided based on number of person in group.

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As of latest update in Jan 2022,
Kashmir and Ladakh are generally safe for tourists, with millions visiting these regions annually. However, it's essential to stay informed about the current situation and follow any travel advisories issued by your government or reliable sources. Here are a few key points to consider:

1. **Security Situation:** Kashmir has experienced periods of unrest in the past, primarily centered around political issues. The situation can change, so it's crucial to check for updates before your trip. Ladakh, on the other hand, is relatively peaceful and has not experienced the same level of unrest as Kashmir.

2. **Travel Advisories:** Check with your country's foreign affairs department or embassy for any travel advisories specific to Kashmir and Ladakh. They often provide up-to-date information on safety and security concerns.

3. **Local Guidance:** When in Kashmir or Ladakh, follow local advice and guidelines. Locals and tour guides are usually well-informed about safe areas and any areas to avoid.

4. **Transportation:** We use registered tour operators and official transportation services for sightseeing and travel between cities.

5. **Health and Safety:** As with any travel, take standard safety precautions. Ensure you have travel insurance that covers medical emergencies. Be mindful of your belongings and surroundings, especially in crowded areas.

6. **Natural Hazards:** Ladakh is known for its high-altitude terrain, so be prepared for the effects of altitude sickness. Take it easy for the first couple of days to acclimatize. In winter, road travel in some areas may be affected by snowfall, so check road conditions if you're traveling during that time.

7. **Cultural Sensitivity:** Respect local customs and traditions. Dress modestly, especially when visiting religious sites. Ask for permission before taking photos of people, particularly in rural areas.

By staying informed, being respectful of local customs, and using common sense, you can enjoy a safe and memorable trip to Kashmir and Ladakh.

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