Nestled in the Himalayas, Ladakh boasts of a serene demeanour and spell binding landscapes. What allures tourists across the globe, to this eye-catching destination, are stunning high-altitude lakes, quintessential monasteries and mountain passes. Whether it is the Nubra Valley, Spiti or Lahaul, scarce habitation in these regions of Ladakh promise a quiet and peaceful gateway, far removed from the chaotic urban life. The mention of Leh and Ladakh brings a stream of sublime thoughts to an enthusiastic traveller’s mind. Whether it is waking up to the scenes of sun-kissed, snow-capped mountains, camping in the high altitude, enjoying an adrenaline rush while trekking or savouring the steaming momos (dumplings), a trip to Leh and Ladakh promises memories which you will always cherish.
Let nature rejuvenate you
The tranquil outbacks, sapphire lakes, frozen glaciers, gurgling mountain streams and rock-strewn pathways are a treat to the tired eyes which crave for a glimpse of pristine nature. As you walk along the quiet lakes or through the farm lands, do not be surprised if smiling faces greet you with warmth. You may just get into an intriguing conversation if you initiate a dialogue with the locals and indulge in light-hearted banter. As you breathe in the cold air, gaze at the clear azure sky, jaw-dropping views will mesmerise you. The ride through the mountains gets exciting at the hair-pin bends and narrow passes. The scenic quotient of the region cannot be ignored as you hike through the sights and soak in breath-taking marvels of nature.
Enchanting attractions in the haven of tranquility
Taglang La Pass is the second highest mountain pass in Ladakh which is positioned at 17,582 feet above sea level. You can spot the Changpa (a semi-nomadic ethnic group) herdsmen grazing their cattle here. Two nearest towns to this pass are Sarchu and Upshi. On your way to Leh, you can halt at Upshi for a refreshing cup of tea. If history beckons you, make sure that you plan a trip to the Leh Palace which was built during the reign of the 17-century King Singge Namgyal. The sturdy walls of the palace are a display of Ladakh’s splendid heritage and medieval Tibetan architecture. The most enjoyable aspect of the visit is the fascinating view of the Namgyal hills from the rooftop. The trip to Ladakh will remain incomplete without a visit to the Namgyal, Hemis and Siptuk Gompa monasteries. If inner peace is what you have been seeking for long, a visit to these religious havens is a must.
Experimenting with Ladakhi cuisine
A trip remains incomplete without savouring the local cuisine. Tibetan cuisine is not limited to momo and thukpas (noodle soup with boiled vegetables, chicken or pork). Tickle your taste buds with the mildly intoxicating butter tea. A smooth concoction made from yak butter, green tea leaves and salt, the delicious and warm beverage will revitalise your spirits. Another Himalayan delicacy is Chhupri or Yak cheese. It is prepared by adding citrus fruits and lime to Yak milk which is churned consistently. The end result is delectable cheese which can be paired with crackers or momo.
As the sights, cuisine and heritage of Leh and Ladakh bedazzle you, let the trip etch memories worth a lifetime in your mind.
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