A Trip to Rugged Ladakh, Pride of Kashmir: Ladakh, India

You know what they say about Kashmir- if there is a heaven on earth, it has got be Kashmir. If you have been to Ladakh, which is a part of Kashmir, you cannot agree more with that statement. I, along with three of my friends, recently visited the region, and it was sheer beauty.

There is something magical about Ladakh which draws you to it in the very first instant. It is almost like falling in love at first sight.

It all started with a visit of the monasteries

Our Ladakh trip started with a visit to the most important monasteries of Ladakh. We visited the Shey Palace, the Hemis monastery, Thiksey and Alchi monasteries on the second day of our arrival in Ladakh.

I had read about the beauty of the monasteries of Ladakh, but they were even better than what I had read in books and online. Some of the monasteries of Ladakh date as far back as 11th century. I could not help but marvel at the amount of hard work which must have gone in to make such beautiful monasteries back then. There were no machines to work with in that era and the terrain of Ladakh was as rugged as it is now.

A visit to Pangong Lake followed

After a day of visit to the monasteries, it was time to visit the magnificent Pangong Lake. It is a remote lake with captivating beauty. When we reached there, all of us were almost stupefied, looking at the marvelous turquoise blue color of the lake. And as much as the lake was beautiful, equally exciting was the journey to it.

We crossed Changla Pass on the way, which is one of the highest motorable roads in the world. We stopped for a while on the pass to take in the breathtaking views. It was simply stunning.

We even had a fun camel safari

After Pangong Lake, we were driven to Nubra Valley, also called the valley of flowers in Ladakh. We could see different varieties of flowers, and with the sun shining bright, they looked even more beautiful.

But what was more mesmerizing was the diverse terrain of the valley. The lush meadows of the valley transformed into sand dunes almost seamlessly. There are sand dunes in Nubra Valley between the villages of Deskit and Hunder, and that’s where we had a fun camel safari.

Ladakh is home to the rare double hump backed camel. The camel safari was relaxing and fun. Honestly speaking, I had always thought of a camel safari in the heat of Rajasthan, but this was something completely different.

We ended the tour with a relaxing rafting experience

We ended our trip to Ladakh with a relaxing rafting ride in Zanskar River from Phey to Nimo. The region has Grade II and Grade III rapids. It was far removed from the exhilarating rafting of Rishikesh, but it was fun nevertheless.

And although we intended to do much more, we were short on time and had to bid adieu to the destination. However, we have vowed to come back to the destination sometime soon, and this time, we are definitely going to try hiking in Ladakh.

I have heard trekking in Ladakh is a beautiful experience, and I surely want to experience it at least since before I die. Honestly speaking though, I am a little afraid of heights, and trekking here is going to be more than challenging for me.

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