Zanskar motor bike

Destinations: Zanskar
Trip Duration: 13 days
Best Time: Mid June - Mid Sept
Grade: Challenging
Highlights: Biking/Jeep/culture/monasteries
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Zanskar motor bike

Day by Day Details Itinerary

 Day 1: Flight to Leh, time to acclimatize.

Pick-up at the international airport in Delhi, transfer to domestic airport, flight to Leh, arrival around 7:00 am, transfer to hotel, free time for the remainder of the morning to acclimatize to the elevation of 3,600 m. In the afternoon, we’ll meet to prepare for the motorcycle tour, and have a group welcome dinner in the evening.

Day 2:Thikse and Hemis monastery, 80 km

Warm-up tour: our first excursion with our Enfields to Ladakh’s most famous monasteries, 

Day 3: Alchi – Basgo and Likkir, 80 km

At the start of the tour, we’ll visit the ruins of the ancient Basgo royal fortress and the picturesque Likir monastery with its huge, free-standing snake Buddha on the way to Alchi. We’ll spend the night in  in Alchi (3,200 m), an oasis on the Indus River which is home to the oldest monastery in Ladakh.

Day 4: Alchi-Kargil Over Fatu La pass– Lamayaru monastery, 190 km

We’ll pass the impressive Lamayuru monastery – and visit it on the way back –, continuing ever upwards to Fatu La pass (4,000 m).

We’ll then descend into Baltistan Valley to the garrison city Kargil, the gateway to Zanskar valley. 

Day 5: Suru Valley -Panikhar – camping Parkachik, 90 km

Through the beautiful, wild Suru valley – We’ll be leaving paved roads behind today, continuing on a dusty track at average speeds of around 20 kph. Ascending to the herdsman’s village of Parkachik, we’ll set up camp in a meadow at 3,900- meters, surrounded by towering mountains below Nun Kun peak.

Day 6: Parkachik- Rangdum monastery- Penzila pass, 90 km

Today, we’ll ascend the adventurous track further until we reach Penzi La pass (4,401 m) and visit the tiny Rangdum mountain monastery before descending along a huge glacier ( Darangdurung) at the entrance to Zanskar Valley. We’ll be camping on a mountain meadow at the Zanskar River at nearly 4,000 meters.

Day 7: Zanskar Valley, Padum and Karsha monastery, 90 km

Around noon, we'll reach Padum, the only small town in Zanskar. Only around 1,000 people live here in the summer. In the afternoon, we’ll visit the Karsha monastery, a medieval oasis of peace and an important center of the Buddhist faith.

Day 8: Zangla-Thongde monastery-Padum, 80 km

Today, we’ll be heading out to the Castle of Zangla and Thongde monastery, which overlooks the Zanskar river from a rocky outcrop.  Zangla was being ruled by  a titular king till his death a few years back. The old castle now in ruins except from a small chappel, occupies a hill, overlooking the desertic valley below. Nearby is the old Nunnery worth a visit for the austere life style of the small monastic community of nuns. An old monastery situated in the nearby village of Tsa-zar has exquisite frescos that should be missed. 

Day 9: Zanskar Valley, riding to Parkachik, 170 km

Our return trip starts with a longer ride. We’ll be crossing Penzi La pass (4,401 m) and spending another night camped on a meadow near Parkachik Glacier.

Day 10: Suru Valley, filling up in Kargil, camping in Lamayuru, 190 km

Descending through Suru Valley to Kargil, we’ll come across our first filling station in 550 km! Crossing the Fatu La pass, we'll reach the Lamayuru monastery, setting up our camp there at an altitude of around 3,800 meters.

Day 11: Lower Zanskar Valley to Chilling, overnight in Leh, 140 km

We'll have the opportunity to witness the morning meditation in the monastery – an unforgettable experience. Next, a steep descent to the Indus Valley. Our next track starts at the confluence of the Indus and Zanskar rivers. The 40 km along the wild Zanskar river to Chilling, a village of coppersmiths, is one of the most breathtaking motorcycle routes anywhere in the Himalayas! We'll be reaching Leh – the end of our motorcycle tour – in the late afternoon.

Day 12: Day trip to Khardung La, the world’s highest pass! 90 km

Today we’ll be reaching the high point of our tour – literally. 45 km on the road and 2,000 meters ascent to Khardung La pass, the highest motorable road in the world. There's nothing else like it! There will be time for relaxation and shopping in the afternoon, followed by a farewell dinner with the crew.

Day 13: Leh-Delhi flight

Morning transfer to leh air port, reach delhi by 10 AM, later own activities/ shopping later in the night transfer to international air port

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