Ladakh is a heavenly place located in the Western Himalayas of the North that is bordered by Tibet to the east, Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh to the south, and the Pakistan-administered Gilgit-Baltistan to the west. This place extends from the Siachen Glacier in the Karakoram Range to the north to the main Great Himalayas to the south. The eastern end of Ladakh consists of the uninhabited Aksai Chin plains.
The elevation of this place ranges from 2550m to 7742m. The longitude and latitude of Ladakh are 34°10′12″N 77°34′48″E respectively. It is adorned with lofty barren mountains and is home to some of the highest motorable passes like Marsimik La (5582 m), Khardung La (5359 m), and Chang La (5360 m), and alpine lakes like Tso Moriri (4522 m) and Pangong Tso (4350 m). Ladakh is further divided into three regions – Leh, Nubra, and Zanskar, and each region has several other places to see.
Adventurers and Tourists
Ladakh is majorly popular amongst adventurers and tourists who feel welcomed by the number of adrenaline-rushing activities offered here. This union territory is thus one of the top trekking destinations in India with unmatched and amazing treks like the popular Frozen River Trek/Chadar Trek.
It also has opportunities for mountaineering, mountain biking, motorbiking, white water rafting, and more.
The ancient Buddhist monasteries add to its exceptional beauty that is mostly nestled in the mountains and is thousands of years old. These ancient monasteries make for the Buddhist pilgrimage destinations there in Ladakh and also act as important cultural centers where major religious festivals take place.
Best Time to Visit Ladakh
Summer Season in Ladakh
The summer season is between April and June in Ladakh and the temperature ranges between 5°C and 25°C. The month of May thus marks the beginning of the tourist season in Ladakh
Monsoon Season in Ladakh
Ladakh receives no to very little rain between July and September as it falls in a high-altitude region and thus this is the best time to visit Ladakh
Winter Season in Ladakh
The Winter season in Ladakh is from October to February in Ladakh. Nonetheless, Ladakh is accessible via flights during winter.
As the roads to Ladakh are open both from the Srinagar Leh highway and Leh-Manali highway, the best time to visit Leh Ladakh is from May end to the middle of July. There is a good amount of snow especially on the Leh Manali highway during that time. Another good time to visit Leh Ladakh is from the middle of September to October when Ladakh is at its most beautiful stage. It is also possible to get good discounts during this time due to the lesser number of tourists in tour packages.
It is advisable to avoid visiting Leh Ladakh during the monsoon from July end to August as the region is prone to landslides at that time. Also, the Leh Manali highway and Srinagar Leh highway are full of sludge, making travel very tough.
There are a few places that give you the feeling of being extraordinary and Ladakh is one of them. Its lakes, valleys, meadows, cold desert, high altitude passes, indeed, its entire landscape, makes it one of the best places to visit in India. Part of that landscape is the beautiful monasteries, quaint villages, monuments & markets of Leh, all of which make it one of the perfect places for tourist holidays.
How to reach Ladakh?
Ladakh has its own airport that connects it to the other major cities of India.
The nearest railway station to Ladakh is in Jammu which operates regular trains to many destinations in other parts of India.
Leh-Manali Highway and Srinagar-Leh Highway (NH 1) are the two routes to reach Ladakh by road.
International tourists as well as domestic tourists require an inner line permit (ILP) and are required to pay INR 400 for it in the form of an Environment Fee. The ILP is valid for 1 week for both foreigners as well as Indians.
Ladakh, aka, The Land of High Passes, which is the newly created Union Territory in India (previously a part of Jammu & Kashmir), boasts a landscape that can leave one with their jaws dropped. It is a destination where the landscape changes dramatically; it is truly astonishing to see the snow, mountains, cold desert, alpine meadows, and lakes at a short distance from each other. Tourism in Ladakh is an absolute delight for adventurers as well as nature lovers.