Duration: 09 Nights & 10 Days
Routing: Delhi - Leh - Lamayuru - Wanla - Hinju - Somda Doksa - Dung Chan La Base - Leh - Delhi
Season: May to October
The Sham valley in the lower part of Ladakh, is known for its beauty & richness during the harvesting season. This trek follows the old & famous Caravan route to Lamayuru which diverges from the Kargil-Leh road at the Phatu La. According to the legend, Lamayuru was once a lake, which miraculously disappeared by the hand of Lotsawa Naropa. The monastery at Lamayuru built in the 10th century is one of the oldest in Ladakh, & belongs to the Kargyu sect of Tibetan Buddhism. This trek offers not only view of the many natural beauties of Ladakh, but also some of its most famous monasteries & the traditional lifestyle of the natives.
Leh Leh Palace, Leh Market, Leh Gompa,Shanti Stupa
Basgo Royal Palace, Ser Zung Temple
Red Fort,Raj Ghat, India Gate, President House, Humayun Tomb & Qutub Minar
Optional Sound & Light Show at Red Fort & dinner at Chor Bizarre
Day 01: Arrive Delhi
Arrive by International flight, after traditional 'Swagat' (Welcome) our representative would assist you at airport & transfer to hotel for check in.
Delhiisa bustling metropolis, which successfully combines in its folds the ancient with modern. Its strategic location was the prime reasons why successive dynasties chose it as their seat of power. In fact, more mythological cities are believed to be here, like the city of Indraprastha from the Hindu epic Mahabharata, founded around 5000 BC. Numerous monuments were built over several centuries by different rulers like Qutub-ud-din Aibek, Alauddin Khilji, Tughlaks, Humayun & Shah Jahan, who built the Walled City Shah Jehanabad.
Later in first half of 20th century much of New Delhi was planned by Sir Edwin Lutyens, who laid out a grandiose central administrative area as a testament to British rule in India. The division in walled city & New Delhi also marks the division in life styles.
Overnight Hotel - Delhi (B)
Day 02: Delhi - Leh (Flt 9W-609 - 0645 hr - 0800 hr)
Early morning transfer to the Domestic Airport to board the flight for Leh. Upon arrival at Leh Airport our representative would assist you at the Airport & transfer to the Hotel for check-in. Rest of the day at leisure & acclimatization. Later in the afternoon a walk around Leh town (3521 m) & visit Leh Market, Leh Palace ruins, Leh Gompa & Shanti Stupa. This walk shall help in getting acclimatized at this height.
Overnight Hotel - Leh(B,L, D)
Day 03: Leh - Basgo - Likir - Alchi - Lamayuru (3420m) (124 km - 4 hr)
Today we drive to Basgo (44 km from Leh). It was an important centre in the old days, having been the capital of lower Ladakh when the kingdom was divided in the 15th& 16thcenturies. We visit the ruins of the Royal Palace at Basgo,SerZung Temple, which is known for its great frescoes & finally the temple with an enormous gold & copper statue of the Maitreya Buddha.
After that we drive to Likir (9 km) & visit Likir Monastery situated atop a windy cliff overlooking the beautiful village of Likir. It was founded in the 12th Century although the present construction dates back to the 18th century as the original one was destroyed by fire. In its courtyard is a yellow colored 3 storey high mammoth statue of the Buddha, which was constructed by a resident monk. The top floor has an impressive museum containing old thangkas & weapons used many centuries back.
From Likir we drive 16 km to Alchi. Just before Alchi we drive across the mighty River Indus over the bridge & reach Ladakh's most loved Alchi Monastery. Over a century old, its wall paintings are very similar to those of the Tabo monastery in Spiti, Himachal Pradesh. Unlike other monasteries which are usually on a cliff top or cling to a mountainside, Alchi is at ground level & is nestled in the shade of a garden.
We continue to drive & finally reach Lamayuru Monastery.
Lamayuru Monastery is one of the most popular & magnificent monasteries of Ladakh. It is known to be the oldest monastic establishment in Ladakh & was founded by Rinchen Zangpo in the 10th century. This Monastery is located amidst the massive mountains. The spectacular setting of this Monastery & its renowned collection of carpets, thangkas & frescoes has been attracting many people all over the world over a long time. We will also be part of the prayer ceremony inside the prayer hall among the monks. It is a very soothing & spiritual experience to be there among these warm & friendly monks.
Overnight Camp - Lamayuru (B, L, D)
Day 04: Lamayuru - Wanla (3250 m) (3-4 hr trek)
In the morning before breakfast you may again visit the Lamayuru monastery to be part of the morning prayer ceremony.
Today we pack our backpacks, watch the horses get ready, & set off for this first day of our adventure. A gentle trail leads up to the small pass of Prinkti La (3750 m) before heading down to the village of Shilla & the last 3 km to Wanla (3250 m). Here we set up Camp for the night & spend the afternoon relaxing in the sun or exploring the monastery in Wanla.
Overnight Camp - Wanla (B, L, D)
Day 05: Wanla - Hinju (3720 m) (4-5 hr)
Today we follow a dusty road the small village of Phenjilla (3410 m) & the scattered village of Uri .We will then walk through a narrow gorge until we reach a traditional Rangthak (flour mill) at the far end of the village. The trail will then cut through the village of Hinju(3720 m) roughly 2 km below our campsite in a yak herders' encampment.
Overnight Camp - Hinju(B, L, D)
Day 06: Hinju - Sumda Doksa (4430 m) (6 hr)
Today we start walking from the encampment along the trail & ascend the ridge below Kongskil La. If lucky we will get glimpses of some wild life. We will then climb gradually until we reach Kongskil La (4950 m), where we will be surrounded by dizzying views of the Karakoram & Stok ranges. The descent down the trail is quite steep with loose moraine causing the difficulty, so be careful! The trail then follows the left side of valley floor, passing a yak herders' hut (4500 m), before we reach our campsite at Sumda Doksa (4430 m). This valley is occupied mainly by the villagers of Sumda Chenmo.
Overnight Camp - Sumda Doksa(B,L, D)
Day 07: Sumda Doksa - Dung Dung Chan La Base (4430 m) (5 hr)
Today we again start walking & after a short walk & a few river crossings, we will reach the village of Sumda Chenmo. From there we head towards the true left side of the valley, which provides a beautiful view of the village with its lush greenery. Further the trail cuts through the valley's wild rose bushes & leads us to another river crossing (this stream originates from the high snow-capped peaks of Photoksar (5685 m).Before making a steep challenging ascent over Lanak, we will see Edelweiss & some of the other rare wild flowers of Ladakh & finally reach the campsite at the Base of Dung Dung Chan La (4430 m). From the campsite, there is a splendid view of Kongskil La.
Overnight Camp - Dung Dung La (B, L, D)
Day 08: Dung Dung Chan La Base (4820 m) - Chilling (3550 m) (5 hr)
Today we will begin the day with a straight climb to Dung Dung Chan La (4820 m), which offers beautiful view of the Stok Range in the east & the Zanskar Range in the south. From the Pass the trail gradually descends down a ridge towards the valley continually tapering before reaching the village of Chilling(3550 m). Chilling is the only village in Ladakh that has provided metalwork such as copper, bronze, tin, silver & iron to the Leh market through the centuries. From Chilling we will drive for about 3 hours along the Zanskar River & eventually reach its confluence with the River Indus. From here the road is good & it is easy drive back to Leh.
Overnight Hotel - Leh(B, L, D)
Day 09: Leh
Full Day Tour
Today, we proceed for Indus Valley Monastery Tour. We start with a visit to Shey, the ancient capital of Ladakh. The monastery here has a huge gold-gilded statue of Buddha Shakyamuni with a large silver lamp burning in front of the statue. Then we visit Thiksey Monastery (Gompa), an impressive complex rising tier upon tier on a hill above the village. The monastery has a beautiful 30 m high gold-plated statue of Maitreya Buddha, the Buddha of the future. Drive further to visit the famous Hemis Monastery, founded in the year 1630 by Stag-tsang-ras-pa under the royal patronage of Sengge Namgyal. Hemis is one of the largest & richest monasteries of Ladakh. The two-day festival of monastic dance in July - August has raised the reputation of Hemis particularly high. The festival is dedicated to Guru Padmasambhava, popularly known as second Buddha & responsible for spreading Buddhism in the Tibetan world. Later we visit the StokPalace, the Royal residence of the King of Stok & the Museum that has a rich collection of ancient Ladakhi artefacts including old Thangkas, precious stones, arms & armoury, the Queen’s necklace & the crown of the King of Ladakh among others. We drive back to Leh.
Overnight Hotel - Leh(B, L, D)
Day 10: Leh - Delhi (9W-610 - 0840 hr - 0955 hr)
After early breakfast we transfer you to the Airport to board the flight to Delhi. Upon arrival at Delhi
Full Day Tour
Today we take a guided tour of Old Delhi, the 17th century walled city of Shah Jehanabad, Visiting the great Jama Masjid, the principal mosque of Old Delhi. Built in the year 1656 AD by the Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan, it is the largest & best known mosque in India. Later we walk down or take a rickshaw ride through Chandi Chowk, the old marketplace of Shah Jehanabad now a picturesque bazaar to reach Red Fort, built in the year 1648 by Shah Jehan.
In New Delhi, we visit Raj Ghat, memorial to the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. It is a simple black marble platform that marks the spot of his cremation on 31 January 1948. Further we drive past India Gate, memorial built in the year 1931 to commemorate the Indian soldiers who died in the World War I & the Afghan Wars. The names of the soldiers who died in these wars are inscribed on the walls. President's House, the official residence of the President of India, built in the year 1931. Until 1950 it was known as Viceroy's House & served as the residence of the Governor-General of British India. We will also visit Humayun's Tomb, memorial of Mughal Emperor Humayun, built in the year 1562. The complex is a World Heritage Site & the first example of this type of Mughal architecture in India. Qutub Minar, built in the year 1206 by Qutub-ud-din Aibek. It is the tallest (72m) brick minaret in the world, an important example of Indo-Islamic Architecture. Qutub Minar & its monuments are listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Later dinner transfer to International airport.
Package does not include