Monasteries, dunes and the lakes of Ladakh
Day 1 Domestic Flight Delhi - Leh
Arrival in Delhi. From here we take a magnificent domestic flight to Leh, the capital of Ladakh. It is found at 3500 m above sea level, above the Himalayan range. Day of rest and acclimatization in Leh.
Day 2 Acclimatization - visit monasteries of Shey, Hemis and Thiksey
We continue our acclimatization with visit of the high Indus valley and the great monasteries of Shey, Hemis and Thiksey. Shey was the capital of the kingdom in the 13th century. We continue to Hemis, the most spiritually important monastery in Ladakh. More than 500 monks remain devoted to this monastery which was erected in 1605 and preserved from looting thanks to its geographical location. We then visit the Thiksey Monastery, located on the right bank of the Indus about twenty kilometers from Leh. This monastery was rebuilt in the 15th century is dedicated to Maitreya, the Buddha of the future.
Day 3 Leh - Basgo - Alchi - Saspol Caves
We take the road along the Indus Valley: a grand route displaying a series of desert plateaus and deep gorges. In Nimu, the crystal clear waters of the Zanskar River mingle with the swirling flow of the Indus river. Afternoon arrival in Alchi from where we climb to the village of Saspol to visit twelfth century caves. We enjoy a pleasant walk in the fields and through the village before heading back to Alchi.
Day 4 Alchi monasteries - Lamayuru (3500 m)
This morning we visit the beautiful monastery of Alchi whose frescoes date back to the twelfth century and are classified as World Heritage by UNESCO. We then climb to Lamayuru along a beautiful winding road to visit a monastery with three important 11th century temples which sit perched on a rock overlooking the village. There are many hiking opportunities around the village of Lamayuru.
Walking: 2 to 3 hours
Day 5 Lamayuru (3 500 m) - Prinkiti la (3 750 m) - Wangla (3 200 m)
A beautiful day of hiking in terms of landscapes. The color of the rocks changes according to the daylight and contrasts with the lush green village of Lamayuru. We climb up to the Prinki La pass (3700 m). After a good rest we begin our descent to Wangla. Early evening visit to the monastery of Rinchen Zangpo which sits perched on a hill overlooking the village of Wangla.
Walking: 4 hours
Elevation: + 350m / -550m
Day 6 Wangla - Phyang - Leh (3500 m)
Back to Leh. On the way we visit the early 16th century Phyang Monastery in the green village of Phyang, 17km from Leh. Afternoon at leisure. Possibility to visit the monastery of Namgyal Chemo, located above Leh (optional).
Walking; 2 hours
Accommodation : Hotel
Day 7 Leh - Khardong La Pass - Nubra Valley - Hundar (3160 m)
We journey towards the Nubra desert, along the highest road in the world and through the Khardong La pass (5680 m). We stop to explore Khardong village and take a gentle stroll amidst breathtaking scenery. Khardong is a small paradise oasis, surrounded by impressive cliffs. Then, we continue to the Nubra Valley which was an important stage of the old trade routes between Tibet and Central Asia. We sleep in Hundar, with beautiful views of the Naya Kangri mountains.
Walking: 2 hours
Day 8 Nubra Desert : Disket - Sumur - Hundar (3160 m)
A day exploring the Nubra desert. Early morning visit to the Samsteling Monastery, a collection of 7 temples founded more than 150 years ago. Then we discover Disket Monastery, the oldest in the Nubra Valley. Next, we walk 2 hours towards Hundar. This evening, those who wish, can ride camels to explore the surrounding dunes (optional).
Walking: 2 hours
Accommodation: Same Guesthouse
Day 9 Hundur - Shyok Gorges - Thaktok (Dakthok 3810 m)
We take a pretty, uncrowded road along Shyok River. This wild road crosses the pass of Wuri La and continues through magnificent gorges. We descend to Takthok Monastery in Sakti Village and visit this monastery dating back to the sixteenth century. It is the only old Nyingma school monastery in Ladakh.
Day 10 Thaktok - Tsomoriri Lake (4540 m)
We take the road towards the Changtang plateau located southeast of Leh; just a few kilometers from Tibet. This region has only been open to tourism for a few years. A complete change of scenary awaits - those who love open spaces will be delighted! In the summer, many nomads come to graze their flocks of goats, sheep, horses and yaks in the great meadows here. The Changtang Lakes also host many protected species of migratory birds every year. We will stroll along Lake Tsomoriri; the sunset over the lake is simply splendid... During our three-day trip to Changtang, we will discover the daily life of Changpas, the nomadic pastoralists of this region.
Accommodation: Camping (tent)
Day 11 Tsomoriri Lake - Tsokar Lake (4530 m)
Early this morning we walk along the lake enjoying the calm serenity of Tsomoriri. The lake covers an area of almost 120 km2. It provides critical breeding grounds and basic staging areas along the flyways of more than 40 species of waterbirds. This afternoon we leave for Tsokar Lake.
Walking: 3 hours
Day 12 Tsokar Lake - Leh
Morning hike around Lake Tsokar. The ocher red mountainous landscape is reflected in the lakes turquoise waters. The large deposits of salt around the lake resemble salars in the Andean countries. Return to Leh.
Walking: 3 hours
Day 13 Leh - Delhi. Gastronomy Visit In Old Delhi
Early this morning, we take a domestic flight to the Indian capital. A gourmet getaway in the alleys of old Delhi greets us; we discover local culinary specialties with tastings and demonstrations. Then we visit Old Delhi, the ancient capital of the Mughal Empire which dates back to the seventeenth century. We observe the fortifications which were erected by the emperor Shâ Jahân, one of the sponsors of the Taj Mahal. We visit the Jama Masjid Mosque, the lanes of Chandni Chowk and other traditional buildings which reveal the history of the Mughal empire. Muslim traditions mingled with the religious and cultural diversity of the big cities is frequent in Delhi.
After this day of visit, you have two possibilities:
- Free evening and night in Delhi, then continue your Delhi tour on Day 15.
- Or, for an extra charge, possibility to finish your trip by visiting Agra and the famous Taj Mahal (Price: 90 € per person, to book at the time of registration). For those who choose this option, at the end of the gourmet tour of Old Delhi today, you take the road to Agra (4 hours drive). Overnight in Agra.
Day 14 Visit Delhi ou the Taj Mahal. International return flight
For those who choose the Delhi option: After breakfast, continue to visit the Indian capital. We visit the Hindu pilgrimage site and temple of Swaminarayan Akshardham. Depending on your flight schedule, we complete our visit by discovering a selection of other important sites like Raj Ghat or Qutub Minar... Transfer to Delhi airport for your international return flights.
For those who choose the Agra option (Price: 90 € per person, to book at the time of registration): Visit the Taj Mahal early this morning to enjoy the beautiful light which enhances this fabulous white marble monument. Then, we explore the imposing palace and fort of Agra, built from red sandstone by the Mughal emperors. This monument from the late 16th century is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Transfer to Delhi airport for your international return flights.
International return flight
Dates & prices
Departures for English-speaking groups:
No departure for now
Trip code: ILAD15-EN
- Transport by private vehicle according to itinerary
- Accommodation in 3 * Hotel or B&B in Delhi
- Domestic flights Delhi / Leh / Delhi
- Accommodation with full board except meals in Delhi and Leh
- English speaking guide for the entire stay for 2 -3 participants
- French speaking guide for the entire stay for 4 participants
- Special permit for the Nubra Valley and Changtang Lakes
- Entrances to monuments
- A gourmet tour and guided visit of Old Delhi
- Local guides for monastery visits
- An Indian Visa
- Single room supplement in hotel in Delhi and Leh (255 €)
- International flights
- Repatriation insurance
- Meals in Delhi and Leh (~ 5 to 15 € / meal) on days 1, 13 and 14 and dinner on day 12
- Drinks, tips and personal expenses - all that is not in "THE PRICE INCLUDES"
Terms and conditions
- Cancellation received more than 30 days prior to the departure date: No cancellation fees.
- Cancellation received 30 to 21 days before the departure date: 30% of trip price will be retained.
- Cancellation received within 20 days of the departure date: 70% of trip price will be retained.
Changes to travel contract
Budget & exchange
- Warm Sleeping Bag
- Water purifiers (micropur, aguatabs ...)
- A cap or sunhat
- 1 or 2 sets of thermals: long-sleeved thermal tops and full-length long johns
- Long sleeved and short sleeved t-shirts, preferably in quick-drying technical material
- A light fleece or equivilent (plus extra warm layers if necessary)
- A breathable wind proof, waterproof jacket (Gore-Tex...)
- Lightweight waterproof over trousers
- Suitable shorts
- Walking trousers
- A pair of high-rise walking boots - strength, good grip of the foot and ankle (high stems) and impermeability are essential. Choose shoes with non-slip soles (vibram).
- A pair of trainers/sandels or equivilent casual shoes for cities, villages and evenings
- Thick walking socks
- Warm gloves, hat and scarf (it can be chilly in the mountains)
- A warm breathable base layer
- A second thermal layer
- Wind and waterproof protective outer layers
- Your personal toiletries and a fast drying towel
- Water bottle(s). Min. 2 litres, light and isothermal
- A good pair of sunglasses (think min. category 3)
- Sun-cream, face and lips
- Head torch and spare batteries
- A pocket knife
- A pair of hiking poles
- A waterproof bag cover (or plastic bags) to protect your belongings
- Toilet paper
- Anti-bacterial hand gel
- Your camera
- A notebook or travel journal
- A rucksack (35-40L or 45-50L) for use as a day bag. This will contain your (vital) personal belongings for the day (sweater, spare t-shirt, water bottle, picnic-lunch, sunglasses, small things ... )
- Please bring a flexible travel bag with zips for easy access max 80L and max 15kg. Yout domestic flight has a limit of 15kg luggage. Please do not bring hard bags like suitcases which are difficult to transport.