Leh Ladakh is one of the most beautiful destinations in North India. It is located in the Himalayas and has rugged valleys and mountains, winding roads where one can also witness cultural life which is exuberant and maintains the charm of this region. The destination consists of Magnetic hills and turquoise colored Pangong Lake. ancient and awe inspiring monasteries and highest passes.
The Leh Ladakh bike trip is one of the most popular ways of exploring Leh Ladakh and one experiences serene beauty. High Passes is one of the prominent features of Leh Ladakh. The destination has icy lakes and swirling roads. The destination has mountains, forests, deserts, lakes, rivers, waterfalls etc.
How to reach
Ladakh is a city which is connected by road and by flight. Instead of travelling by flight straight to Leh one can take a flight to Srinagar or Delhi. Leh is a city which is located slightly over 11,400 feet above sea level.
Route 1: Srinagar to Leh
On the route, one can witness many beautiful villages, war memorial, Himalyan valleys, Gurudwaras, monasteries and more. The total distance is 434 kilometres and it opens from May to October. It also depends on the weather.
Route 2: Manali to Leh
Manali to Leh is a distance of 490 kilometres. One may pass through high mountain passes, narrow passes, scenic valleys. The best time to undertake this route is June to September.
It is assumed that Manali to Leh is more dangerous as it has more dangerous terrains. This route also has the most motorable passes in the world. It is better to choose the Srinagar route as one can hit higher terrain gradually rather than a quick steep climb.
Things to carry
The following things are a must to carry for your Leh Ladakh Bike trip. These things would make your trip comfortable and also ensure a safe adventure.
- Medical Kit or a first aid Kit: A first aid kit is a must for your trip. Moove, Savalon, headache medicine, dizziness and body pain medicine, disprin, band-aids, medicine in case of breathlessness, stomach ache medicine are a must. These are some basic medicines or medical equipment you must carry. If you are an asthma patient do not forget your asthma pump.
- Wearable Items: One should protect oneself from sun rays and UV rays. Goggles, Sunscreen lotion with a high spf, mustard oil, lip balm, gloves for bikers, muffler, woolen caps, water/ windproof jacket. These items are required to protect oneself from the weather.
- Other necessary items: Torch with extra cells, swiss knife, water bottle, wet tissue and dry tissues because tissues are expensive in Leh, eateries like: glucose, chocolate, nuts, etc.
- Carry ID cards and some photocopies, medical insurance (if any), map of Ladakh, List of important contacts, multiple charges of phones, extra batteries if you have a camera, carry enough cash.
- BSNL postpaid connection is the only network working in Leh Ladakh so it is safe to carry a sim.
About the locals
As for the land itself, the people of Ladakh are different from the rest of the country. The physique, clothes and faces are more similar to Tibet and Central Asia. The original population may have been Darts, an Indo Aryan race down from the Indus and the Gilgit area. Socio religious festivals held in the monasteries. Archery is a sport which is played by the locals. The game of Polo is another sport which is proudly played by the people.
The arts and crafts of Ladakh is not very well developed as it is in Kashmir. The food of Ladakh includes dishes like Thukpa, Skyu, Chhutagi, Tingmo etc. these are the local dishes of the region and are a must try. These dishes are served in both vegetarian and non-vegetarian as per the eating preference of the traveller. These dishes are light and delicious. These dishes might be new for you and thus might cause slight stomach pain or indigestion. It is better to carry medicines for these.
Tips for the travellers
- The best time to visit Leh Ladakh is from May to October. Roads from Srinagar are open from mid May whereas the route from Manali is open after May. A road trip is suggested in the summer, autumn months as the roadways are blocked in the winter months and one will have to take a flight.
- One must carry medicines in order to deal with Acute Mountain Sickness.
- One must stay hydrated and drink upto 3 to 4 litres of water.
- One must not practice yoga immediately when one reaches. Wait till your body is sufficiently acclimatised as practicing brisk walking will also take a toll on you.
- When one reaches Leh, ILP or Inner Line Permit needs to be in order. For this permit, one needs to go to the DC office in Leh and procure the permits yourself.
- Do not hurry in things. Take regular halts and experience the beauty of the place at a slower place.
- One should avoid smoking and drinking on the trip.
- Carry more cash than relying on the ATMS.
- While on a bike trip wear protective biking gears.
- Try carrying extra fuel with you as there are less petrol pumps
- Carry an extra puncture kit accelerator cables, clutch cables, tubes, fuses and air pumps.
- Keep some days handy if you are travelling to Leh on bike. If there is tight schedule it is not advisable to take a bike.