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Old 27th April 2019, 13:34   #1771
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Default Re: Leh, Ladakh and Zanskar - The Ultimate Guide

Srinagar-Leh road to reopen on Sunday (28/04/2019).

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The 434-km long Srinagar-Leh highway, the only road linking the Ladakh region with rest of Jammu and Kashmir, will reopen on Sunday(28/04/2019), said Captain Shubham Sood of Border Roads Organisation (BRO).
News Source.
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Old 27th April 2019, 16:45   #1772
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Originally Posted by supreddy77 View Post
Hi friends,

We (wifey, a cousin and I) are planning to do the Bangalore to Leh-Ladakh circuit this Aug. The posts here have been great inspiration. Attached is what we were thinking in terms of the itinerary.

- Knowing that now night halt at Pangong is not possible, I am wondering if we can change the route to still cover Pangong and do a stop over somewhere closeby?
- Hanle permits were restricted last year, is there any news about them for this year?
My few cents:
1. You are taking 6 days to reach Srinagar from Bangalore, which you may try to reduce. Last year we did similar trip, where we did Srinagar from Hyderabad in 3 days with two stops at Jhansi and Udhampur with 2 drivers. This will give you more room to explore Ladakh
2. You should plan one day stay in Leh for local sight seeing and to get permit. Though google says, Kargil to Leh can be done in 5 hours; actually its much more than that
3. Moreover, beyond Kargil the scenic beauty changes drastically. The advantage of road trip is to enjoy that beauty, capture photos. You should give adequate time in that road. Also, you should pay a small visit at Lamayuru monastery, Magnetic Hill, confluence of Indus & Zanskar. If you are adventurous, you may do river rafting also at Zanskar. It was a great experience. Hence keep a whole day on the Kargil-Leh road.
4. You should spend one extra day in Turtuk/Hunder. If you drive from Leh to Turtuk, it might be late when you reach Turtuk; military might not allow you to visit Thang village (which in my opinion is a must see; NB, drive was very difficult from Turtuk to Thang last year). You cannot visit Thang next day also, as you need to start very early from Turtuk to ensure you cross Shyok river as early as possible before water level increases in the river. Hence, plan one extra night at Hunder/Turtuk; may be you can enjoy the double humped camel at Hunder or Diskit Monastery on the extra day
5. Shyok is a less lengthy route from Nubra to Pangong. But start as early possible in the morning to cross the water-streams early with minimum water level.
6. You may stay at Man or Merak; instead of Spangmik; if you want to avoid tourists.
7. We traveled Leh in July last year and got the permit for Hanle. I dont find any reason why you wont get permit this year
8. Hanle to Sarchu might be a tough call. You may plan a night halt at Tso Moriri and visit Sarchu next day
9. Sarchu to Mandi in one day, also looks very aggressive
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Old 27th April 2019, 16:52   #1773
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Thanks SJM for the help. Is there a homestay or such in Hanle that we can stay. Also, can we go from Hanle to Jispa or Keylong in a day (7-8 hrs)?
You may stay at Padma Guest House, which seems the best in the lot in Hanle
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Old 28th April 2019, 11:28   #1774
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Originally Posted by Krishroy View Post
My few cents:

2. You should plan one day stay in Leh for local sight seeing and to get permit. Though google says, Kargil to Leh can be done in 5 hours; actually its much more than that
3. Moreover, beyond Kargil the scenic beauty changes drastically. The advantage of road trip is to enjoy that beauty, capture photos. You should give adequate time in that road. Also, you should pay a small visit at Lamayuru monastery, Magnetic Hill, confluence of Indus & Zanskar. If you are adventurous, you may do river rafting also at Zanskar. It was a great experience. Hence keep a whole day on the Kargil-Leh road.
Thanks Krishroy for your detailed comments on the itinerary, really appreciate your inputs
- I agree we are taking 5 days, we also have 2 full-time drivers, but we wanted to cover Golden Temple at Amritsar. We will try to cut timings before reaching to Amritsar. We wanted to restrict driving for 11-12 hrs a day max,
- We plan to cover Kargil to Leh, starting early and seeing all the places along the way including rafting at Zanskar,
- We have a rest day at Leh for permits and acclimatization,
- We might not get an extra day in Turtuk, but I agree with your suggestion. Will see if we can get one more day,
- Have split the Hanle to Sarchu to Hanle -> Tso Moriri and Tso Moriri to Keylong. I am assuming Keylong -> Mandi should be fine in a day,
- We have revised the itinerary on your input

Leh, Ladakh and Zanskar - The Ultimate Guide-ladakh-road-trip.png

Also, thanks for suggesting a place in Hanle.
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Old 28th April 2019, 12:28   #1775
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Originally Posted by supreddy77 View Post
- Have split the Hanle to Sarchu to Hanle -> Tso Moriri and Tso Moriri to Keylong. I am assuming Keylong -> Mandi should be fine in a day,
This looks much better now. Very similar to what we did. Tso Moriri to Keylong in one day is tough; but doable. We did the same. Keylong to Mandi is also doable in a day. However, we took a trout-eating & shopping break at Manali for our wives. My suggestion don't prebook anything beyong Tso Moriri. You will find ample hotels. Based on your energy left, you can plan where to take break.

BTW, what car you are driving?
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Old 28th April 2019, 12:47   #1776
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BTW, what car you are driving?
We will be taking XUV500. I am hoping the Shyok route won't present a big problem if we start early with XUV's GC.

Did you make any bookings at Kargil and Tso Moriri in advance? I read somewhere that the options might be limited given that we are planning in August and there will be crowd.

In the plains we are not planning to make any booking in advance - might use HVK's Chalo Ladakh or book using Oyo etc on the go.
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Old 29th April 2019, 15:18   #1777
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Originally Posted by supreddy77 View Post
We will be taking XUV500. I am hoping the Shyok route won't present a big problem if we start early with XUV's GC.

Did you make any bookings at Kargil and Tso Moriri in advance? I read somewhere that the options might be limited given that we are planning in August and there will be crowd.

In the plains we are not planning to make any booking in advance - might use HVK's Chalo Ladakh or book using Oyo etc on the go.
XUV is perfect for this terrain.

I did prior booking for hotels in Srinagar, Kargil, Leh and Hunder. But didn't do for Pangong, Tso Moriri and Hanle.

We didn't face much trouble in Hanle; as last year tourist was very less there.

But, it was difficult to find good accommodation in Tso Moriri and Pangong, if you plan spot booking. Specially if you travel with family in a self-drive car, they may ask some exorbitant price. In Man, a camp accommodation asked INR 15K for single night single tent. Hence, it is always better to book in advance.

Last edited by Krishroy : 29th April 2019 at 15:22.
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Old 30th April 2019, 10:13   #1778
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Originally Posted by Krishroy View Post
XUV is perfect for this terrain.

Specially if you travel with family in a self-drive car, they may ask some exorbitant price. In Man, a camp accommodation asked INR 15K for single night single tent. Hence, it is always better to book in advance.
Thanks for the tip Krishroy. 15K is really exorbitant!! Will keep it in mind while making the bookings.

Just noticed your XUV is an AWD. Mine XUV is FWD. What spares or oils did you carry for your XUV? Any special servicing/checkup before leaving or in Leh?
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Old 30th April 2019, 15:12   #1779
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Originally Posted by Krishroy View Post
XUV is perfect for this terrain.

I did prior booking for hotels in Srinagar, Kargil, Leh and Hunder. But didn't do for Pangong, Tso Moriri and Hanle.

We didn't face much trouble in Hanle; as last year tourist was very less there.

But, it was difficult to find good accommodation in Tso Moriri and Pangong, if you plan spot booking. Specially if you travel with family in a self-drive car, they may ask some exorbitant price. In Man, a camp accommodation asked INR 15K for single night single tent. Hence, it is always better to book in advance.
15K for a single night!!!! Any suggestions for pre-booking accommodation in Pangong and how to contact them? I tried calling on a home stay in Merak but couldn't get thru the line. Also dropped an email that I found on their website but no response yet.
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Old 30th April 2019, 15:53   #1780
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15K for a single night!!!! Any suggestions for pre-booking accommodation in Pangong and how to contact them? I tried calling on a home stay in Merak but couldn't get thru the line. Also dropped an email that I found on their website but no response yet.
I stayed for a night at Spangmik last year and booked through make my trip. There were very limited options on MMT as well for pangong & nearby areas.
There was an article posted here only couple of days back regarding ban on night stay/tented accomodations at pangong lake. So be cautious while booking in advance.
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Old 30th April 2019, 16:20   #1781
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Originally Posted by dieselburner View Post
I stayed for a night at Spangmik last year and booked through make my trip. There were very limited options on MMT as well for pangong & nearby areas.
There was an article posted here only couple of days back regarding ban on night stay/tented accomodations at pangong lake. So be cautious while booking in advance.
Yes that is the reason for my major concern in booking in advance without proper recommendation. Though many of the tented and other illegal accommodations have been pulled down, I have heard that these still feature online for booking.
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Old 6th May 2019, 01:50   #1782
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Just noticed your XUV is an AWD. Mine XUV is FWD. What spares or oils did you carry for your XUV? Any special servicing/checkup before leaving or in Leh?
AWD should also be good. Following are the items we carried, which are related to car
1. Puncture kit
2. Tyre Air Pump
3. Hydraulic Jack
4. Tow Rope
5. M-Seal
6. Engine Oil
7. Fuse
8. Container to carry 40 lt of Diesel
9. Funnel
10. Coolant
11. Jumper Cable

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Originally Posted by Sandy28 View Post
15K for a single night!!!! Any suggestions for pre-booking accommodation in Pangong and how to contact them? I tried calling on a home stay in Merak but couldn't get thru the line. Also dropped an email that I found on their website but no response yet.
We stayed at Pangong Sarai at Man; which was decent and not that costly. You may try to reach them at 94192 20797

Last edited by navin : 8th May 2019 at 12:54.
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Old 8th May 2019, 11:11   #1783
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AWD should also be good. Following are the items we carried, which are related to car
Thanks Krishroy. I will arrange for these items as well. Also, my XUV has done only 15k on the odo. I was planning to get the clutch and suspension checked mainly before the trip. Suspension I believe should be fine. Any other aspect to get checked?
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Old 8th May 2019, 12:32   #1784
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Default Re: Leh, Ladakh and Zanskar - The Ultimate Guide

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Originally Posted by supreddy77 View Post
Thanks Krishroy. I will arrange for these items as well. Also, my XUV has done only 15k on the odo. I was planning to get the clutch and suspension checked mainly before the trip. Suspension I believe should be fine. Any other aspect to get checked?

XUV500 is a fantastic vehicle and since yours is an AWD, you should not have any issues. With only 15k on the odo there is not much to check except for basic checks.
During my Sach pass and Ladakh trip in my XUV, I had damaged the bottom engine guard which is nothing but a piece of plastic and is the lowest part to the ground. You must be careful when you drive through water crossings and rough roads.
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Old 9th May 2019, 12:29   #1785
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Originally Posted by supreddy77 View Post
Thanks Krishroy. I will arrange for these items as well. Also, my XUV has done only 15k on the odo. I was planning to get the clutch and suspension checked mainly before the trip. Suspension I believe should be fine. Any other aspect to get checked?
15K is actually the perfect odo reading for such trip. You actually dont require any special service. However, for your mental satisfaction you may get a basic health check done. If you have bull guard fixed in your car, remove it.
1. Airbag doesn't function
2. There is some litigation going on as few states wont allow bull guard
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