Saturday, 12 March 2016

An overview of exploring Ladakh region by road: Part 1: Introduction

Exploring Ladakh region is a wish that every travel enthusiast has in his mind. Best way to make a quick trip to Ladakh is to take a flight and arrive directly at Leh. However the quick trip will not allow you to experience the breathtaking landscapes, passes etc that are a part of roads towards the Ladakh region. You will also need to take ample rest to get your self properly acclimatized with very high altitudes in the region.

Khardungla pass

A road trip is always a better option if you are not having very tight schedules while exploring Ladakh region.

Assuming base city as New Delhi, the few options available for a journey towards Ladakh will be:

1- New Delhi - Jammu - Srinagar - Kargil - Leh


Delhi - Jammu
575 Kms
Jammu - Srinagar
300 Kms
Srinagar - Sonmarg
80 Kms
Sonmarg - Drass
65 Kms
Drass - Kargil
55 Kms
Kargil - Mulbekh
40 Kms
Mulbekh - Lamayuru
70 Kms
Lamayuru - Leh
125 Kms
Total  distance
1310 Kms
Srinagar – Leh NH 1D
435 Kms

2- New Delhi - Manali - Keylong - Sarchu - Pang - Leh


Delhi - Manali
550 Kms
Manali – Rohtang Pass
51 Kms
Rohtang pass - Keylong
61 Kms
Keylong - Sarchu
112 Kms
Sarchu - Pang
80 Kms
Pang – Tanglang-La pass
70 Kms
Tanglang-La pass - Upshi
60 Kms
Upshi - Karu
16 Kms
Karu - Leh
35 Kms
Total Distance
1035 Kms
Manali - Leh
485 Kms

Pros & cons:

Proper acclimatization.
Breathtaking views of enroute landscapes and passes.
Opportunity to explore many small enroute places nowhere mentioned in any travel guides.

Road journey requires more time.
Roads are not in a good shape at many places, so you can not opt to drive without expert driving skills.
You may not find many petrol pumps, ATM, mobile network & vehicle mechanic/service points, on the route and it may cause irritation & problem if you are running with out proper backup.

Kindly note:

  • Only post paid mobile signals are available in Ladakh & entire J & K region. Prepaid mobiles other than J&K numbers will not work on the route, so be ready for staying away from mobile connectivity for long hours. Some times even the post paid mobiles will not work.
  • Mountain rules when you are in Ladakh, so be ready for spending few more days if the mountains and mother nature does not allow you to follow your travel plan. Always keep some buffer days to avoid any hassles.
  • Accommodation is not available at all the places, so research your options for night stays while planing your trip.
  • Good accommodation options are available when you are in Leh, take proper rest before starting to explore the region.

We will post more updates on the travel to Leh-Ladakh region. If you are having any further queries and you are planning a trip to Leh - Ladakh you may get in touch with by an email at , or at our facebook page @ optimum tours.

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