Ultimate Ladakh Roadtrip Guide

Ladakh also referred to as “The Land of High Passes” is every Indian’s Dream Roadtrip. This nature’s beauty was completely hidden until it became popular through the Bollywood Movie “3 IDIOTS” in 2009. Situated earlier in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, recently declared as a union territory in 2019, it is the most sparsely populated region consisting of Buddhist and Muslim populations. Leh is the largest town of Ladakh after Kargil which offers as an excellent travelers stop before traversing to the other regions of Ladakh. Ladakhi, a Buddhist Tibetan dialect is the primary language of this breathtaking region.


First Glimpse of the Ladakh Mountains

Best Time to Visit:

Ladakh is a treat to watch all year round however the roads are closed from November to March as the region is prone to extreme snowfall. If you wish to avoid herds of tourists then go to Ladakh between late August and October.

Truly a HODOPHILE for LIFE 😉

How to reach Ladakh :

You can reach Ladakh via many modes.

  1. By Road: If you embark on this route, believe us guys it will be the best route of your lives. You will, however, need to dedicate a minimum of 10 days to complete the entire circuit which starts from Manali or Srinagar and ends in Ladakh. We took the latter route and enjoyed every bit of it. If you don’t wish to ride a bike or drive a car, you can also opt for state buses either from Srinagar or Manali.
  2. By Flight: You can fly to Ladakh as the nearest airport being Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport located in Leh. The aerial views are something which you will cherish all your life.
  3. By Train: The nearest station is Tawi in Jammu which is 700 km away from Ladakh. This one is the least preferred route as it gets quite taxing.
It’s all about the Journey

Our Complete 14 Days Itinerary:

Day 1: Mumbai – Delhi – Srinagar

We embarked upon our much-awaited 14 days journey to Ladakh. This ultimate trip had been on our wishlist since forever and finally, it was coming true. We boarded our flights from Mumbai on 18th Aug early morning and landed at Srinagar, famously known as the land of lakes and gardens ‘Switzerland of India’.

Srinagar is the largest city and summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir in India. We exited the airport and it was the first time where we witnessed military men in every nook and corner. It definitely gives you the jitters initially when you see so much security however be rest assured, Kashmir is absolutely safe and the locals there are the warmest. Shakib, our designated driver was waiting to take us to our next stop. We made our way to Dal Lake also known as Srinagar’s Jewel spread across 15 km with the beautiful wooden carved houseboats and snow-clad peaks of Pir Panjal mountains.

We reached our houseboat through a 15 mins shikhara ride which was a wonderful experience. We settled in our houseboat “Golden Hopes Houseboat” and freshened up. Soon after, we had a yummy Kashmiri cuisine called Chicken Gustabha prepared by our host and later relaxed at the houseboat taking in the 360-degree view of the mountains.

In the evening, we headed for a Shikara ride across Dal Lake. We were welcomed by an amazing pinkish-purple sunset while sipping on the famous local tea named Kawah. We have to admit that watching the sunset at Dal lake was absolutely breathtaking. After spending some time by the lake, we went for a quick stroll and did some street shopping. We picked up a few souvenirs and then went to dine at Shamyana restaurant where we had Mirchi Korma and Naan. We ended our dinner with some yummy ice cream at Kashmir Diaries and headed back to our houseboat. The entire Dal Lake looked splendid adorned with lights from all the houseboats stacked within the lake. Post reaching the houseboat, we played UNO for a while and then called it a day.

Day 2: Srinagar – Sonamarg – Dras

Distance covered: 143 km / Total Time covered including all stops: ~8 hours

Must see: Dal Lake, Tulip Gardens, Sindh River, Thajiwas Glacier, Baltal Valley, Zojila Pass

We woke up to the most beautiful sunrise which was indescribable. We are not early risers, but we had decided to wake up at 5.30 am to witness the gorgeous sunrise. The sunrise was accompanied by many birds and our flower man – Shanawaz. He was the most famous flower buds seller at Dal Lake and convinced us in buying them too although it wasn’t on our shopping list. He gave me a flower boat ride too and I also tried my hands with the oars. It was both a fun and scary experience, fearing that I would fall off in that lake at any moment. We sipped our morning tea while watching the locals starting their early morning routines. It felt so calm and peaceful there and we could spend hours sitting at the houseboat and view the nature around us.

We left Dal Lake taking back beautiful memories of this place and promising to come again and spend more time in this paradise.

We were welcomed again by Shakib who was our designated driver for the next 2 days. We headed to Sonamarg, our first pitstop for the day which was around 80 odd km from Srinagar. When we started entering Sonamarg, we were greeted with lush green, golden meadows, tall deodar trees with crystal transparent water streams flowing along the way. The views definitely made us sing the famous Bollywood song from the movie Roja – “Yeh Haseen Wadiyan, Yeh Khula Aasman, Aagaye hum kahaan, Eh mere Sajana”. It was a surreal debut experience for us and we were thankful for the opportunity to explore Kashmir. We stopped by the Sindh river and were spell bounded by the beauty of this golden meadow hill station. Our driver suggested visiting Thajiwas glacier, one of the famous attractions located around 7 km from Sonamarg town. This glacier trek being surrounded by the Himalayas is a must-visit for all the nature and trekking lovers. Since we were pressing on time, we decided to hire ponies that were well maintained and properly fed for the trek. The Thajiwas Glacier trek cost us 3000 per couple to and fro. You can witness serene scenes of horses grazing in the grasslands surrounded by lush green fir and alpine trees with small streams flowing and the local Gujjar kids frolicking around in the area.

We spent around 2-3 hours at this place and took back some unforgettable experiences for life. By the time we were done by the trek, it was already 5 pm and were not sure if we could reach our next destination Kargil which was 125 km ahead. We decided to go with the flow and made our way across the mighty Zojila Pass situated at 3,528 m (11,575 ft). This was the very first pass one encounters from Srinagar to Kargil, an important link between Ladakh and Kashmir. We were lucky enough to pass this one without any traffic since many travelers are faced with a waiting period of minimum 1-2 hours due to landslides or snow, etc. We decided to ditch Kargil and took a halt at Dras as it was past sunset and unsafe to drive in the dark. Our driver recommended Ali Dhaba and Homestay, and at first, we were a little hesitant, but to our surprise, we were served a much needed delicious meal. Considering Dras being the 2nd coldest inhabited place in the world, we spent our night in a no-frills room good enough to rest our legs and warm our bodies for the next day’s travel.

Day 3: Dras – Kargil – Lamayaru – Leh

Distance covered: 282 km / Total Time covered including all stops: ~10 hours

Must-see Attractions: Kargil War Memorial, Namik La Pass, Fotu La Pass, Lamayaru Monastery

We woke up wrapped in our thick blankets and no wonder it hit us that Dras indeed is the second coldest inhabited place in the world. You will not find fans in any rooms irrespective of any weather. It’s quite chilly during summers so we can only imagine how harsh winters can be here. We then had the yummiest aloo parathas for breakfast at Ali Dhaba and Basera Lodge and said our goodbyes to Ali Uncle who treated us like his own family. Although we were a little skeptical about staying at this homestay, we would now definitely recommend it to all backpackers and fellow riders, especially for Ali Uncle’s hospitality and the lip-smacking food prepared by him. He was an absolutely wonderful, caring, and loving host and definitely someone who likes to strike a conversation that can go on for hours. We then started our onward journey to visit the Kargil War Memorial which was around 10 km from Dras. If you are in Dras, this is a must-visit place dedicated to the martyred soldiers during the Indo-Pak Kargil War in 1999. You can also view Tiger Hill from Dras which was one of the peaks infiltrated by the enemies. We spent around an hour at the memorial and no words can express the pride of being an Indian. We literally had goosebumps all over during the entire visit. We will highly recommend each and every Indian to visit this memorial at least once in their lives. Post that, we stopped over at Namikla La Pass, 3,978 m as the views were so captivating that we had to click some amazing pictures of the beautiful landscape. We then visited Lamayuru Monastery, the first Monastery we had visited ever and it was an absolute spiritual experience with the monks. We then headed onwards and couldn’t resist stopping midway to watch the glorious sunset while reaching the city of Leh. We checked in at Ree Hostel by Raybo around 7 pm and then quickly ordered for pizza as we were completely famished. Since we had skipped lunch, a word of advice, do not skip any meals when you are in the mountains especially at high altitudes, since it will hit you so bad that you will end up with a headache or worse nausea. Also, carry Diamox tablets based on a doctor’s prescription and sniff camphor as and when required. Since we were tired, we hogged on the pizza and immediately retired to bed.

Day 4: Leh Sightseeing (Acclimatization to the weather)

Distance covered: 10 km

Must See: Leh Palace – Shanti Stupa – Tibetan Market

We woke up early around 6 am and sipped on hot piping tea while watching our first sunrise in Leh. We then flew our baby drone, DJI Tello, for the first time, and wow, it felt amazing. Although it’s not a professional one, we still love it. We then had eggs and bread for breakfast with a lot of butter (dry hair and skin can change overnight when we eat more butter). We then freshened up to go and explore Leh city. We hired 2 Royal Enfield classic 350 for 6 days for Rs 1200 per day. Quite a good bargain we must say!! As it was our first day in Leh, our hostel owner advised us to acclimatize well by not doing too many strenuous activities. This is advisable to all especially those who travel by air and land directly at Leh Airport. We picked up a local sim card from the Leh market. We highly recommend buying a BSNL sim card since that is the only network that will work in and around Ladakh while Airtel works only in Leh city. We tasted the organic produce of the mountains and the apricots and apples were the juiciest we have tasted in our entire lives. The vegetables looked so healthy and freshly plucked from their own fields. We chatted with the locals and strolled around the Leh Tibetan Market and then had local food such as chicken momos, chicken thupka, chicken fried noodles, veg thenthuk at the Lamayaru Restaurant. Post lunch we went to visit the Leh Palace, Castle of Namgyal Tsemo, and watched the most astonishingly beautiful sunset at Shanti Stupa. That sunset just looked straight out of a postcard and we just couldn’t believe it for real. We had a quick tea break coupled with some butter toasts, at the German bakery and later ended up dining at the famous Gesmo Restaurant. We dozed off to sleep quite late as one can have endless conversations when you’re chilling with friends, old and new, in the mountains, right 😉

Day 5: Leh Sightseeing – Indus and Zanskar River Confluence – Magnetic Hills – Leh Market

Distance covered: ~80 km to and fro

We planned to go easy on day 5 as we had a series of long rides lined up for the next 3 days and wanted our body to get acclimatized completely. We headed for a late lunch at Chopsticks Noodle Bar where one needs to self-order through a checklist menu. Well, this was our first experience and we ended up taking around 30 mins only to check the boxes on the menu. We then headed to see the confluence of Indus and Zanskar river which was approximately 40 km from Leh city. The experience of riding in the mountains with the diverse landscapes and the cool wind engulfing your entire body and giving you those happy chills just felt amazing. We watched the sunset at the confluence and then stopped by at the Magnetic Field Road on our way back. It is said that any large iron objects or cars on this hilly road may appear to roll uphill in defiance of gravity when they are, suppose to roll downhill. We tried that many times, however, we really couldn’t make out the difference. Once we reached the city, we dined at Lehchen which is the only place that serves IMFL (Liquor) until 1 AM. Yeah, you read that right you can get alcohol in Leh too. Their kebabs and tandoori are a must-try and that sums up another day in Leh. We hit the bed quite stoked about our journey ahead to Khardungla La Pass in Nubra Valley the following day.

Day 6: Leh – South Pullu – Khardungla Pass – North Pullu – Diskit – Hunder, Nubra Valley

Distance covered: 124 km / Total Time covered including all stops: ~10 hours

Morning everyone!! So excited to embark on our next 3 days bike journey. We had an early breakfast and stored our extra luggage at the hostel and headed on to our journey to Nubra Valley. We filled in the bike tanks, picked up carry-on oxygen pumps and water to keep us hydrated, filled in extra containers of petrol, and started our journey towards the treacherous Khardungla Road. The experience riding on our bikes on this road was a dream come true. If the roads until Leh were already amazing, just wait till you see what lies ahead. We passed through the South Pullu check post where you have to showcase your Inner Line Permits before moving ahead. We got our ILPs done through our hostel 2 days in advance, however, you can get your ILPs online too. There is a small tea stop as well and we advise eating something from here because you won’t get anything to eat or drink until you reach North Pullu check post which is around 30 km ahead. We hogged on hot Maggi, bread omelet, and tea and nothing can beat the heavenly experience of having Maggi in this part of our country. We then made it to the mighty Khardungla Top, world highest motorable pass, 18380 feet, though it is still being disputed. The average temperature here in summers can reach up to 20 degrees but it felt less than that and in winters it can go down to -40 wherein the pass is closed down for tourists as it is wrapped with thick blankets of snow. There is also a Khardung Gompa situated atop the Pass. We then snapped some pictures and rushed from that spot so that altitude sickness doesn’t hit us. It is advisable to stay there for max 10 -15 mins or else you may hit with bad altitude sickness due to lack of oxygen, which can lead to vomiting, nausea, acute headache, etc. While ascending and descending Khardungla Pass for about 10 km, you will come across rough roads filled with rubbles and potholes due to the water stream so one needs to be very careful while riding on this stretch. We met with an unfortunate minor bike accident while descending Khardung La Pass. There was already a car broken down on the pass and another car which was stuck right behind it was trying to move ahead and at that moment, the cab driver missed hearing our continuous honks while we were passing through and our vehicles collided accidentally, leading our bike to skid and both our legs under the bike. Donald, who was equally hurt with the help of our other friends had to rush me to the closest army hospital at North Pullu check post. We then headed to Diskit Civil Hospital as the Army Hospital wasn’t equipped with the Xray machine. Post the Xray, the doctor informed us that there weren’t any major fractures detected and advised for a 5-day complete bed rest, which was next to impossible since we still had 7 more days left on our trip. We picked up the necessary medicines and somehow headed to our campsite in Nubra Valley. Since it was post-sunset already, we couldn’t locate our camp and happened to take another horrible steep road which was filled with loose sands and rubbles which led to yet another accident. We lost control and ended up bumping each other’s bikes and fell off the ground again. Thank God none of us were majorly hurt this time except for some minor bruises. We finally reached the campsite Double Humped Camp and had dinner and retired to sleep after quite an eventful day. Well, this incident only taught us that travel is not always as you plan it, it can be a mix of good and bad adventures and we can only learn from them and move on. (Never ride post-sunset on an unknown path)

Day 7: Hunder Sightseeing

Distance covered: 30 km

Must see: Double Humped Camel Safari, Sand Dunes, Diskit Monastery, and Maitreya Buddha

Its a new day and let’s see what is in store today!! We woke up to the beautiful views of Nubra Valley and although I couldn’t walk, all my pain was restored just watching the calmness of the mountains. Our initial schedule was to visit Turtuk today however due to last night’s happenings, we wanted to relax and not overexert ourselves. Hence we skipped Turtuk which we still regret however that just gives us an excuse to visit Ladakh again. We had a scrumptious breakfast and the boys went to the nearest garage to fix the bikes. We then had a relaxing lunch along with some hearty conversations and then visited the sand dunes and rode the double-humped Bactrian camel. We were quite stunned to witness sand dunes in this dry landscape. We headed to Diskit Monastery and watched yet another sensational sunset at Maitreya Buddha overlooking the entire Nubra Valley. We returned to our campsite and had an early dinner as we had to leave quite early for Pangong the next day.

Day 8: Hunder – Diskit – Shyok – Durbuk – Tangste – Pangong Tso

Distance covered: 165 km

Duration: ~9 hours including 1-2 stops

We set early at 5 am to reach Pangong Tso as we had to ride around 165 km and the locals had advised leaving as early as possible to avoid the gushing flow of the numerous river streams. We started yet another adventurous journey passing through different colored landscapes and the white clouds and blue skies and rugged vast mountains. We traversed through the mighty Shyok river crossing around 3-4 river streams and stopped for lunch at Karakoram restaurant at the end of Shyok Village. Stuffed on hot Maggi, noodles, and tea and then prepared ourselves for the remaining 70 km ahead. As Ladakh is a cold desert, you will only find sparse vegetation such as willow groves, wild roses, shrubs, etc. We passed through the beautiful villages of Durbuk, Tangste, and eventually caught the first glimpse of the glistening blue Pangong lake view. We reached Pangong at 3 pm and checked into our camp Martsemik La. We headed for tea and snacks at the Pangong viewpoint and we couldn’t get enough of this lake. It is known to change around 7 colors during the day. It was so windy and cold that we couldn’t stay out in the open even for an hour. Rushed back to our camps as we couldn’t bear the windy breeze, we had a hot yummy dinner which was a buffet spread and then snuggled up into our thick cozy blankets. Guys, this one has to be definitely ticked off your India travel bucket list at least once in your lifetime. We suggest staying at least one night in Pangong rather than visiting in a day as it will take quite a toll on your body due to the extreme weather conditions there. Please be advised that most camps at Pangong do not offer freshwater for a bath as the only water source available in this part of Ladakh is the salty lake water.

Day 9: Pangong Tso – Tangste – Durbuk – Changla Pass – Leh

Distance covered: 151 km Duration: ~9 hours including 3 stops

Must See: Changla Pass 5,360 m or 17,590 ft ( World’s second Highest Motorable Road )

Today we were leaving Pangong Tso with a heavy heart and heading back to Leh which was around 150 km. We had an early breakfast and headed to Pangong lake to take in the last views and then headed onwards to Leh. The best part about each journey in Ladakh was the different landscapes you can witness here, from the browns to the greens, at one side cattle grazing in green pastures, on the other side wild horses galloping freely, crystal blue water streams flowing through the mountains, local kids walking to their schools. This place will truly leave a deep impact on your mind, heart, and soul. We passed through Tangste and then took a mini stop at Tundup Restaurant in Durbuk which is a complete military area and then headed towards Changla Pass which is at an elevation 5,360 m or 17,590 ft and the second-highest motorable road in the world. If someone told you that Khardungla Pass is the most treacherous one, wait until you try Changla Pass which is an extreme adventure in itself. Our advice – if you are traveling heavy then please hire a 500 cc Royal Enfield since at some point or the other, your 350 cc bike may give up halfway through the slop. We finally reached Leh around 6 pm and checked in at Ree Hostel by Raybo. As it was our last night in Leh, we did some souvenir shopping from the Leh market and went for our last dinner at our all-time fav Gesmo Restaurant.

Day 10: Leh – Upshi – Moore Plains – Tangla La Pass – Pang – Lachung La Pass – Nakee La Pass – Gata Loops – Baralacha Pass – Sarchu – Keylong – Rohtang Pass – Manali

Distance covered: 480 km Duration: ~15 hours

Must see: Tangla La Pass, Pang, Gata Loops (a series of 21 hairpin bends), ChandraTal, Surajtaal, Rohtang Pass)

So here we are finally leaving Ladakh and heading to Manali with a heavy heart. Ladakh will be etched into our hearts forever and we can’t wait to visit this paradise again. We booked a cab for Rs. 17000 and headed to Manali. We were only able to leave at 1 pm as Leh was closed in the first half of the day due to some festival. We stopped for lunch at Upashi which is the frequent pit stop for travelers. We passed through the vast Moore plains spread across 35 km until it again starts to rise towards Tanglang La Pass. We stopped for some time at Tangla La pass which is situated at an elevation of 5,328 meters (17,480 ft). We then stopped for tea and snacks at Pang which is claimed to be the world’s highest transit camp at an altitude of 15640 feet and watched the sunset there. Then we passed through Lungalacha La pass 5079 meters(16,598 ft), Nakeela Pass (4740 meters), Gata Loops (a series of 21 hairpin bend spread across 7 km), Baralacha Pass and then passing through Sarchu which is stopover camp for all travelers on this route and the start of Himachal Pradesh state. Then we passed Baralacha Pass and reached Rohtang Pass by early morning 6 am. We basically drove through the entire day and night to reach Manali by mid-morning. We wanted to take a stopover at Jispa however our driver was comfortable driving in the night. We do not recommend it as the roads are pretty bad especially at Bharatpur and hence we decided against our driver’s recommendation and took a halt at Jispa. No matter how skilled a driver he may be, we will never trust them with such treacherous roads after sunset. Anyway, on reaching Manali, the first thing we did was halt for a quick breakfast and then checked in at Treebo Hotels in Old Manali. We highly suggest staying somewhere in Old Manali as New Manali tends to be quite overcrowded.

Day 11: Manali Cafe Hopping

We checked in at Treebo Hotels in Old Manali and plonked on our cozy beds instantly as we didn’t get proper sleep the last night. We woke up late in the afternoon, freshened up, and then headed out to eat at the nearest café. We spotted The Trippy Travelette which had quite the chilled out ambiance. We ordered for tea, coffee, and some snacks and spent time by the gushing Beas river. The manager also gave us complimentary apples from his own orchard and those were definitely the juiciest ones we have ever had. We then strolled around in the bylanes of Old Manali and visited The Lazy Dog Café situated by the Beas river known for its cool outdoor setup and delicious food. We celebrated Donald’s birthday there and then returned to our hotel to continue the birthday jam session with food, drinks, and a lot of music.

Day 12: Relax day at Manali – Donald’s Birthday – 29th August

It was Donald’s birthday today and his wish was to only drink and chill in the mountains and of course, I couldn’t deny him that. We had brunch at Drifters café which we highly recommend to all as it has an amazing sit-out with the view of the mountains. We then headed for a leisurely stroll at Mall Road and also visited the CNI Hospital in the evening for the third consultation on my injured leg wherein the doctor prescribed some more medicines. We ended the day with a birthday dinner at Johnson Café and the grilled trout there is definitely recommendable.

Day 13: Manali Sightseeing – Hidimba Temple – Vashisht Temple – Vashisht Hot Water Springs – Jogini Falls – Beas View Point – Mall Road Shopping – Chandigarh

So today was our last day in Manali and wanted to make the most of it. We started with breakfast at Dylan’s Coffee House which is quite a famous spot in Old Manali and their chocolate chip cookies are to die for. We loved the cookies so much that we parceled some for our home as well. We then visited the Hidimba Temple, Vashisht Hot water Springs, Jogini Falls, and Beas River. We had a yummy lunch at Café 1947 situated by the Beas river and then headed to the Mall road to do some souvenir shopping and booking our overnight bus to Chandigarh. We departed from Manali and took the 10 pm HRCTC bus to Chandigarh. We loved the hippie, laid back vibes of Old Manali, and cant wait to visit this beauty again.

Day 14: Chandigarh – Mumbai

We reached Chandigarh early morning and wanted to try the famous aloo parathas for breakfast, so we started hunting for dhaba’s which were open around 7 am. We dumped our luggage at the locker system available at the bus terminal and finally found Punjabi Dhaba which was open. We tried the aloo parathas with lassi and it was pure heaven. We then visited Rose Garden for some time and then returned to the bus terminal to pick up our luggage and headed to Chandigarh Airport in the afternoon. Boarded our flight back to Mumbai and just like that our 14 days amazing adventurous trip came to an end however the memories are still engraved deeply within our minds. Until then “Julley”.

Detailed Cost of our 14 days roadtrip

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The Colors of Ladakh

Contacts which you can use if you plan your Ladakh trip

  • Golden Hopes Houseboat – Dal Lake, Srinagar – Owner Taariq Zandari -9858457491/7006831852
  • Srinagar Car Rental – Bilhaal – 09419066527
  • Leh – Hostel Ree by Raybo – Eshay – 09484038038
  • Leh – Cab service – Rizgin – 09622954779
  • Dras – Basera Hotel and Lodging – Ali Uncle – 09419867511

Dos and Donts while planning your Ladakh trip

  1. We suggest checking if you’re medically fit before you embark on the Ladakh trip. We are saying this as Acute mountain sickness can affect each and everyone if one is not prepared for it properly especially children and senior citizens. You can consult your doctor, accordingly how to take Diamox when traveling to Ladakh. You can also constantly snip camphor (kafur) when your at high altitudes which helps a lot.
  2. Start taking walks/running or working out at least one month in advance so that you can prepare your body accordingly for extreme weather conditions.
  3. Obtain your Inner Line Permits (ILPs) from the website http://lahdclehpermit.in/ in advance. This website is currently under maintenance however you can inform your Leh hotel/hostel managers to arrange your ILPs in advance. The documents required for ILPs are one of the government-issued identity cards, for e.g, Driving License, Passport, Pan Card, Voter ID, Aadhar card, etc.  A self-attested photocopy of a photo identity proof of the applicant is required to be attached with the application form and the cost for the ILP has been mentioned above in the expense table.
  4. Make sure to carry the right clothing when your heading to the mountains especially Ladakh. We suggest carrying at least 3 layers of clothing when traveling between the months of May and September and then add one or two additional layers in the remaining months. Carry multiple layers in the form of cotton T-Shirts, thermals, light woolens, and windproof jackets and you will be just fine. Try to carry full sleeves T-shirts as the sun can be quite harsh here.
  5. Carry your medicine kit comprising of Diamox, camphor tablet, antiseptic cream, vaseline, crepe bandage, pain balm or spray like Iodex, Relispray or Volini, band-aid, Dettol, nasal drops, tablets for nausea, electoral, vitamin c tablets, motion sickness, vomiting, blood pressure, diabetes (if needed), pain killer tablets advised by your doctor accordingly.
  6. If you are going on a bike trip, make sure you have all the necessary biking and riding gear for yourself and the pillion. Please ride safely and don’t attempt unnecessary stunts as it is strictly not advisable when you’re in the mountains.
  7. Download the offline map for Ladakh in advance in your phones and keep it handy. It is also advisable to have some local contacts handy just in case when you need any help.
  8. If you have any existing Airtel, BSNL, and Jio sim card, please carry it with you as these networks tend to work in the Ladakh region.
  9. Wear sturdy rainproof mountain shoes. You can pick them up from Decathlon or on the Amazon website.
  10. Always carry spare fuel if traveling by bike or car as there are scarce petrol pumps in the Ladakh region.
  11. Respect the BRO (Border Roads Organisation) rules always.
  12. Be humble with the locals and experience staying with them in their homestays. Observe cleanliness and refrain from buying anything plastic while your traveling and carry a spare bag to bring back all your trash if possible.
  13. Carry your raincoat and rain cover for your luggage due to the unpredictable weather conditions.
  14. Keep buffer days in your itinerary just in case if needed as everything doesn’t go as planned when you’re in the mountains 😉
  15. Stay hydrated always and eat properly when you are in the mountainous region. Do not ever skip meals. Always keep some snacks such as dry fruits, protein bars, etc handy. Keep on eating butter regularly to help you fight skin and hair dryness.
  16. Acclimatize yourself properly when you reach Leh. We suggest staying in Leh for a minimum of 2 or 3 days before you set to explore other regions in Ladakh.
  17. Always start early morning and return to your destination before sunset. It is advisable not to ride post-sunset as there aren’t enough street lights or any road indicators and riding in the mountains can get very tricky in the night especially when you’re traversing through unknown roads.
  18. Carry portable power banks, universal adaptor, extension cord, sd cards, batteries, and chargers as batteries tend to drain out quickly due to extreme weather conditions. Also, the electricity is available only for one hour every day in all parts of Ladakh except Leh city.
  19. Book your accommodations in advance especially during the peak tourist season from May to August.
  20. And last but not the least, ride safe, enjoy the stunning views, make amazing memories and click as many pictures as possible as frankly speaking NO ONE CAN CLICK JUST ONE 😉

You can view our complete Ladakh trip essentials list here.

Feel free to DM us on our Instagram or Facebook profile if you have any doubts while planning this adventurous road trip. You can also check our videos on Youtube and if you like them, don’t forget to like, comment, and Subscribe. Until then stay safe, stay home. We hope that you enjoyed reading about our Ladakh adventures.

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    1. Yeah absolutely mother of all roadtrips. We also didn’t get to explore Manali that much as we wanted to just relax in the hippie vibe there. But that just leaves us with an excuse to visit again.

  1. This post reminded me of so much I haven’t done yet! I was supposed to be taking a little part of this itinerary towards Kargil and then Zanskar but oh, well! Hoping to get back on the road ASAP!

    1. We always have missed some place during our roadtrips but that just gives us an medium to travel there again 😉

  2. This place is the best roadtrip location in India. Couldn’t believe our eyes when the landscape started changing after Zojila. However, Let to Manali stretch is pending for us.
    Thanks for your detailed guide, will cover that side soon

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