The topography of Ladakh, dotted with Himalayan mountain peaks, fast flowing rivers & high passes make it an ideal destination for adventure tourism. Trying out various adventure activities in Ladakh provides you a unique kind of thrill & experience.
There are many kinds of activities which you can try during an adventure tour in Ladakh, from peak climbing in the Himalayan ranges to river rafting to horse riding. The high altitude & beautiful landscape add to the overall charm of seeking adventure in Ladakh.
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The Himalayan, Zanskar & Karakoram ranges are home to several mountain peaks that attract climbers every year. They range from 5,000 meters to 7,000 meters. The most famous peaks for mountaineering in Ladakh are Stok Kangri (6,150m) in Zanskar Range , Nun (7,135m) and Kun (7,077m) in the Himalayan Range, and Saser-I (7,415 m), Saser -II (7,513m) and Saser III (7,495 m) in Karakoram Range.
June to September is the best time for peak climbing in Ladakh, but all tourists will have to obtain a permit from the Indian Mountaineering Foundation.
River rafting is an extremely popular adventure activity in Ladakh, thanks to the two famous rivers, Zanskar & Indus, with their rapid grades that range from I to V. Most of the stretches, however, have grades ranging from I to III.
The best part is both amateurs & experienced rafters can enjoy river rafting in Ladakh. The best river rafting stretches are Phey to Nimo (Grade II-III), Upshi to Kharu (Grade I-II), Upshi to Nimo (Grade II-III), Phey to Saspol (Grade I), Phey to Indus via Zanskar at Nimo (Grade III-V), Nimo to Alchi (Grade III+) & Alchi-Khaltsey via Nurla (Grade II-III).
What makes river rafting so special in Ladakh is the panoramic views of remote villages, monasteries & the lovely rugged landscape which dot the routes. June to September is the best time for river rafting in Ladakh.
Planning your adventure holidays in Ladakh & not including camping would be a huge mistake. There are two types of camping in Ladakh, leisure & adventure. Leisure camping can be enjoyed at the most famous tourist places in Ladakh like Tso Moriri, Pangong Tso, Hunder Village & areas around Leh.
Adventure camping can be enjoyed at certain places in Zanskar Valley & among the nomadic tribes. It is another great way of interacting with the local people & getting an insight into their way of life.
Just like the other adventure activities in Ladakh, trekking in Ladakh carries its own excitement & charm. You get to explore the rugged yet spectacular landscape, monasteries & get an insight into the Tibetan Buddhist culture & lifestyle of the Ladakhi people.
Those who are amateur trekkers can try out the trekking routes from Lamyuru to Alchi, Padum to Darcha, Ripchar Valley & Lamayuru to Darcha Trek. These routes are dotted with ancient Buddhist monasteries, meadows & quaint villages.
Trekking in Ladakh is great for advanced trekkers too, with the famous routes being the Jhunglam Hemis to Padum, which is dotted with Hemis Monastery & Chuskurmo & Chokdo villages.
The most famous trek, however, is the Chadar Trek, which involves walking on the frozen Zanskar River. The trek takes you into a different world of frozen waterfalls, peculiar ice formations & other icy wonders. Stok Kangri Trek is the other famous trek, which treats you to enthralling views of K2 & Indus & Zanskar Valleys.
January to September is the best time to enjoy trekking in Ladakh. For the Chadar Trek, though, mid January to mid February is the best time, while mid July to mid September is the best time for the Stok Kangri trek.
A bike trip to Ladakh offers excitement, thrill & adventure in equal measure. You get to visit the famous tourist places in Ladakh like Nubra Valley, lakes like Pangong Tso, monasteries like Hemis & Thiksey, high altitude passes like Khardung La, not to mention interacting with the local people & getting the opportunity to know them better.
There are two routes for a Ladakh bike trip. One is, Srinagar to Leh, and the other one is Manali to Leh. The route from Manali to Leh is the more difficult of the two, but offers more sightseeing opportunities & excitement.
June to September is the best time for going on a bike tour to Ladakh, and usually requires 10 to 11 days.
If you have ever wondered what cycling in paradise would feel like, try mountain biking in Ladakh. Cutting your way through the meandering trails through the mountains, past the lakes, villages & monasteries & along the gushing waters of the Indus & Zanskar, is something that you will talk about for a long time.
The best places to enjoy this adventure activity in Ladakh are Pangong Tso, Leh-Zingchen, Skiu-Chilling, Len-Sankar Gompa & Stok, Stakna & Thiksey monasteries. June to September is the best time to enjoy mountain biking, when all the roads are accessible.
Taking a camel safari in Ladakh is both a popular adventure & leisure activity. The camel safari here is different from those in Jaisalmer because here, you ride on double humped camels known as Bactrian camels. They are a fascinating sight, with their double humps & coat of thick hair.
You can enjoy camel safaris in Ladakh from Hunder & Diskit villages, both of which are located in the Nubra Valley. July to September is the best time to enjoy this exciting adventure activity in Ladakh.
Horse riding is another adventure sport in Ladakh that you cannot miss. It is the best way of exploring the landscape, especially in the unpaved routes, and coming across sights that you would not normally see.
You can enjoy horse riding in Ladakh in Changthang, Tso Moriri Lake & Zanskar Valley. June to September is the best time for horse riding, when the weather is pleasant & the routes are accessible.