Khardung La Pass

  • imageNubra Valley
  • Ladakh

About Khardung La Mountain Pass, Ladakh

At 5,359 meters, Khardung La is the highest motorable road in the world. A sign which greets visitors upon arriving there proclaims it with a hint of pride. The realization that one is traversing through the highest motorable road is in itself as exciting as it gets.

Khardung La is a high altitude mountain pass located almost 40 kilometers from Leh, and is the gateway to Shyok & Nubra Valleys. It has an enormous strategic importance for India, as it is used to transport supplies to the Siachen Glacier.

The Khardung La Pass, a major tourist place in Ladakh, is maintained by the Border Roads Organisation and all kinds of vehicles, from two wheelers to heavy trucks, ply this road.

Top Things to see in Khardung La

The foremost tourist attraction in Khardung La is the excitement of travelling the highest motorable road itself. There are spectacular views that greet you along the way, that of Leh City & the surrounding mountain ranges.

You can take plenty of pictures and enjoy noodles, momos, coffee & tea in the cafe. There is also a small souvenir shop where you can purchase anything you like.

Things to remember while visiting Khardung La

Because of the high altitude, you will probably suffer from Altitude Mountain Sickness, or AMS, because of the extremely low oxygen & air pressure. It is best, therefore, not to spend more than 20 minutes there.

It is better to acclimatize by staying 3-4 days in Leh before travelling to Khardung La Pass. You should carry medicines like Diamox and plenty of water to avoid dehydration. Sunglasses and woollen clothing is a must.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Do I need a permit for travelling to Khardung La Pass?

Indian tourists need an Inner Line Permit while international tourists need a Protected Area Permit to visit certain parts of Leh, and Khardung La Pass is one of them.

Q. What is the best time to visit Khardung La Pass?

March to May & September to October is the best time to visit Khardung La Pass.

Q. How to reach Khardung La Pass?

Take the Manali-Leh highway via Manali or Srinagar. From Leh, it’s a 1 hour 30 minutes ride to Khardung La Pass. The pass itself is located about 40 kilometers from Leh, and is in good condition till the South Pullu checkpoint.

From South Pullu checkpoint till the North Pullu checkpoint, the road is not in a good condition, as it’s a dirt track.

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