5N Leh / 1N Nubra
Arrive at Leh airport by morning flight from Delhi. This flight is one of the most sensational flights in the world. On a clear day from one side of the aircraft can be seen in the distance the peaks of K2, Nanga Parbat, Gasherbrum and on the other side of the aircraft, so close that you feel you could reach out and touch it, is the Nun Kun massif. Upon arrival you will be transferred to your hotel. You would take a little time to settle in and acclimatize since you have gone from a relatively low elevation in New Delhi to over 11,000 feet! During the afternoon, you can walk through the old town, beneath the Leh Palace, to allow you to get oriented to this fascinating city. Overnight in a hotel.
After breakfast full day sightseeing to the massive Tibetan Buddhist Gompas of Shey, Thiksey and Hemis. A few kilometers up the Indus is Shey, the ancient capital, with its palaces, temples, and vibrantly colored murals, cleaned and restored in the mid 1980’s. Later we drive to visit the fortress styled monastery of Thikse. Afterwards, we drive to visit the Hemis monastery. This monastery is known to be the most famous and rich Buddhist temple in the entire region. The Murals and frescoes here date back to 17th century. After we explore the sacred monastery, we drive back to our hotel in Leh. In the evening, we will spend some time roaming around the markets. Overnight at your hotel.
After early breakfast drive for a visit of Pangong Lake via Chang La pass. The drive takes you through spectacular, amazing scenery, with breathtaking views of the snow covered Himalayas. The Lake is the highest (4267M) salt-water lake in the world, situated along the India / China border. It is about 130 Km long and 5-6 Km wide. The Chang - chenmo range surrounding it from the north provide a spectacular backdrop to the blue and green expanse of its brackish water. Later drive back to Leh. Overnight Hotel.
We will drive to Nubra valley in the morning, driving over the highest motored pass in the world. The exciting journey through serpentine roads leads us to the Khardungla Pass at an awesome height of 5550 meters. We stop at the pass to admire and click some photographs of the fantastic view, before driving down into the Nubra valley. The valley is situated on an old caravan route at the confluence of the Shyok and the Nubra rivers. We drive to our fixed camp resort and later drive to visit the charming valley, of Deskit – the tiny capital of Nubra. The capital is marked by a single file of shops that are put up on the main road. We will visit the Deskit Gompa, perched on a rocky spur above the village, with a commanding view of the entire valley. From Deskit we will drive to Hunder past an area of sand dunes and get aquinted with the famous Bactrian camels. This small population of shaggy double-humped animals, which in the old days, were used as pack animals on the Central Asian trade routes are now used as riding animals in the high deserts. In the late afternoon we will drive to the camp. Overnight in camps.
We will drive back to Leh, driving on the same route and crossing the Khardungla pass yet again. We arrive at Leh in the afternoon and settle for the day at our hotel.
Today we drive on the Indus river route to visit the lovely oasis of Alchi situated in the outer Zanskar region. As we drive past colorful villages and hill side monasteries the journey will get more interesting. We cross the bridge and arrive at Alchi a bit early in the afternoon. We spend the time exploring the small village. One of the interesting aspects of this village is its monastery. Mainly known for its wall paintings of the 11th century, the monastery was built by the great translator "Lotsawa Rinchen Zangpo". The wall paintings in Alchi Monastery are some of the oldest surviving paintings in Ladkah and reflect artistic and spiritual details of both Buddhism and Hindu kings of that time in Kashmir. Later as we wrap up our Alchi visit, we drive to visit the Lamayuru monastery. The Indian scholar Mahasiddhacarya Naropa founded Lamayuru monastery in the 11th century (allegedly on the site of a dried-up lake) after spending many years meditating, Lamayuru is the one of the largest and also one of the oldest gompa in Ladakh with a population of around 150 permament monks resident. After we explore this beautiful monastery we will head back to Leh. Overnight in hotel.
After breakfast drive back to the airport for your flight to any onward destination.
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