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List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh


When you finally get to make a trip that has been on your bucket list for a very long time, there is no way you want to miss out on anything. Traveling to Ladakh is no less than a dream when you finally get a chance to go to Leh and live your dream that is exactly on your mind- how to experience everything best that Ladakh has to offer. Helping you in this process of planning your trip, here are few of the best things to do in Ladakh that will make your experience worthwhile. Don’t forget to put it in your itinerary.

1. Biking around Ladakh

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-1 Even if you are aren’t making it to Ladakh on your bike, you should definitely hire a bike once you get here. Moreover, the public transport in Ladakh is not that developed and local cabs are expensive. Also, the outstation cabs are not allowed to move that easily in Leh Ladakh. So you would eventually be left with one option which is the best thing to do to move around and to explore the heavenly places in the hill town. Actually, hiring a bike makes it very convenient to visit local attractions around Leh city, only if you're an expert in riding bike on hilly terrains.

2. Ride on one of the highest motorable road - Khardungla Pass

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-2 To clear the myth, Khardung La Pass is NOT the world’s highest motorable road (as many people think it to be). But, India recently got to the top when BRO built the Umling La Pass connecting Chismule and Demchok villages. It is located 230 km away from Leh and is elevated at 19,300 ft. It lies at Indo - China border region and is under control of Indian Army. Currently, civilians are not permitted to drive in this region but don’t you worry. Khardung La Pass is no less a wonder to drive, being the third highest and one of the most treacherous roads in the world. Khardung La Pass is located at a distance of approximately 40 km from Leh which makes it an easy pick for a bike ride from Leh (Unless you want extra adventure in your life). The pass is one of the most adventurous, rockiest and deadliest roads and undoubtedly a feather that every biker wants to add to their cap.

P.S. - Travelers are not advised to stay at the top for more than 30 minutes due to low atmospheric oxygen level. To be honest, at such altitude you can't stay more than that.

Click here to know about the famous mountains passes in Ladakh.

3. Camping at Pangong Lake

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-3 Yes, it is THE place to visit in Ladakh and there is no way you can miss this one. The landscape of tranquil blue water with the gigantic mountains in the backdrop is a sight that pierces straight through your heart and stays there. It is the definition of beauty. But, remember not to hurry around here. Do not try to go and come back from the Pangong Lake the same day. Also, the long drive to this place won't allow your body to take another journey. Plus, the beauty of lake will surely make you stick to it. It is suggested that you give this beauty your night and it will give you a pleasurable memory. Stay the night in camps on the lake side, put up a bonfire, make few drinks and enjoy the peace, cold and eternal beauty of nature. Camping beside the beautiful lake of Pangong is undoubtedly the best camping location in India.

Want a complete Pangong Lake Tour Guide? Then, click here.

4. Double Humped Camel ride in Nubra Valley

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-4 The last thing you expect amidst the magnificent mountains is the desert. But, don't forget you are in Ladakh and surprise can come to you any minute. When you are in Nubra valley which will leave you speechless with its beauty. You can camp here as well and it will be a different experience altogether. Nubra valley is a hub of camps ranging from basic to the luxurious camp stay experience. You also can't miss the milky way gazing and trail of thousands of stars in the sky at night.

But, do what Nubra Valley is known for, ride the double-humped camels aka Bactrian camels who came to India via silk route in 1950’s. The camels are not the typical animals of this region. They were bought here by Mongols for the purpose of trade. They are now used for the tourism purposes, hence give this ride in the sand dunes a thought. The sad part is only a few are left in Nubra valley which also creates the urgency to protect this beautiful species from extinction.

5. Marvel the moonlight monument - The Shanti Stupa

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-5 The white beauty which is a symbol of peace and Buddhist culture is where you can find utter peace while you will get to know a lot about the Buddhist culture and religion as well. Bask amidst the peace, Shanti Stupa is situated on a hilltop offering the best panoramic view of the city. It was built in the year 1991 by Gyomyo Nakamura, as a part of the Peace Pagoda mission to promote the idea of peace in the world. Summers or winters, this place always wears a stunning look and it looks even better when the white edifice shines under the moonlight.

6. Witness the magic of Magnetic Hill

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-6 The wonder of science, Magnetic Hill phenomenon of nature that has put science in trouble. Also known as a gravity-defying hill, it is believed to have magnetic properties which pulls the vehicles uphill. It will surely leave you in awe. But, scientists believe it is not the magnetic properties but the structure of the hill which is deceptive - an optical illusion. The layout of the hill is such that the vehicles moving uphill seem to be moving downward and vice-versa. So, you can actually climb uphill in your vehicle with your vehicle’s ignition off and to move downwards you need to accelerate your vehicle. A lot of people visit the magical road every year, being such a miracle of nature or science you shouldn't miss this experience either.

7. Attend the famous Hemis festival

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-7 If you are here in the month of June, then you are lucky enough to be a part of the extravagant Hemis festival that Ladakhi people celebrate in the utmost spirit of festivity. You will get to witness the Lamas perform the traditional dance of Chhams wearing the vibrant masks and attires. The 2-day festival takes place in the Hemis Monastery and is attended by all the locals and travelers around the world. Don’t forget to mark your presence here.

8. In search of Snow Leopard in Hemis National Park

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-8 If you are a wildlife enthusiast, you know how much happiness one glimpse of snow leopard can give you. Hemis National Park is famous for its snow leopards, it is believed to have the highest density of them in any protected area in the world. It is also the home to numerous endangered mammals like leopards, Asiatic ibex, Tibetan wolf, the Eurasian brown bear and the red fox. Go in the wilderness, and if you are lucky you can spot a number of wild animals in the mountains.

9. Go for a trek in Leh - Challenge your Limits

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-9 I know, I know what you are thinking, biking and then trekking is a bit too much to do? Eh? Not if you are looking forward to experiencing it all. There are a number of treks that one can go for in Leh and Ladakh. While Chadar trek remains one of the most adventurous treks to go for in the month of February. The trek is done on the Frozen Zanskar river. There are others as well. You can choose from hardest to easiest trek ranging from 2-day trek up to 15-day trek. If you have missed a road trip to Ladakh, you can go for Darcha Padum trek which covers all the scenic beauty of road trip to Leh-Ladakh from Manali. Although, it is strictly meant for the experienced trekkers.

You can read about other treks in Leh here.

10. Explore the Monasteries

List of Must-Do Activities in Leh-Ladakh-10 The getaway to Buddhist and Tibetan culture, it is a delight to get a sneak peek of the religion through the magnificently built monasteries in Ladakh. Some of them are true examples of the ancient architecture. You go there, meet the monks - little ones and the older ones. Learn a bit about their culture. Find peace and enjoy the beauty of nature that surrounds you throughout. Read about the monasteries in Ladakh.

Other activities: White water River rafting in Zanskar river, Homestay at Stok Village, Mountain biking on the slopes, experience luxury at Saboo Resorts in Saboo village (around 8 km from Leh city). You should also go for shopping in Leh market, collect some souvenirs and try some delicious local cuisines.
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