Spiti and Kinnaur
(7 Days/ 6 Nights)
Day 01 – Simla – Sangla
Day 02 – Sangla – Chitkul – Kalpa
Day 03 – Kalpa – Nako – Gue – Tabo
Day 04 – Tabo – Gue – Dhankhar – Lalung
Day 05 – Lalung – Pin Valley – Kungri – Mudh – Kaza
Day 06 – Kaza – Langza – Hikkim – Komik – Ki Monastery – Kibber – Losar
Day 07 – Losar – Chandratal Lake – Manali
Day 01 : Shimla – Sangla (6 – 7 Hours)
We start driving from Simla towards the picturesque small towns in the himalayas. We start with Sangla. At Sangla – known as the ‘Land of Gods’, the 95km stretch of exquisite beauty promises you a storehouse of wonderful memories. The flow of the Sutlej River through the Sangla Valley is quite a sight to behold. Overnight stay at Sangla.
Day 02 : Sangala – Chitkul – Kalpa (4 – 5 Hours)
Today, we visit Chitkul – often called the last Indian village. The extensive Nila range where the greenish-blue Baspa River originates, decorates India on one side and Tibet on the other. At a height of 3450m, Chitkul is picture-perfect. We then continue driving on the India – Tibet Highway – towards the apple-orchard dotted town of Kalpa. Legend has it that Kalpa was the winter home of Lord Shiva. If it’s true, he couldn’t have found a more remarkable abode for himself, with enthrallingly majestic views of the Kinner Kailash and Jorkandan Peaks looming right above the village. A winding road about 7 km above Rekong Peo brings you to this gem of a little village. Kothi, located 3 kilometres from Kalpa, has a temple dedicated to the goddess Chanadika Devi. This temple has a very unusual architectural style and fine sculpture. An exquisite gold image of goddess is enshrined in sanctum. Don’t miss the fantastic sunset at Kalpa. Overnight at a hotel in Kalpa.
Day 03 : Kalpa – Nako – Gue – Tabo (7 – 8 Hours)
Today, the landscape changes from green-mountains to barren-mountains. We continue our journey through Kinnaur and enter the Hindustan-Tibet Highway – often called the world’s most treacherous roads. We drive via Puh, which is the last fuel station on this road before Kaza. After a fuel refill, we drive towards Nako. Nako – originally known as ‘Kyangoh’ or ‘Gateway to the Holy Place’, situated at 3600m. This village is the embodiment of Buddhist culture and traditions. The village is exquisitely beautiful with an oval shaped lake, protected on all sides by adjoining mountains. The lake freezes over during winter. Later, we drive to Tabo – home to the 1010 years old Tabo Monastery and is an abode to many precious Thangka paintings, including the famous Pillar of a thousand Buddhas. The Tabo monastery is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage site. Overnight stay at hotel / guest house in Tabo.
Day 04 : Tabo – Gue – Dhankhar – Lalung (2 – 3 Hours)
Today, we drive towards Dhankar. Perched high above the confluence of the Spiti and Pin River, in a hidden bowl, is the tiny hamlet of Dhankar. The former capital of the Royals of Spiti Valley. Go back in time as you explore the 1200-year-old Dhankar Gompa. If time permits, do take an hour’s climb above the village to visit the stunning turquoise Dhankar Lake which offers views over the valley and towards the twin peaks of Mane Rang (6593 meters). Later, we take a short drive to Lhalung – another beautiful village. The word Lhalung means ‘land of god’ and the village of Lhalung is located at the foot of the Tangmar Mountains which supposedly transforms in colour depending on the mood of the deities. The village of Lhalung is home to one of the oldest gompas in Spiti valley. The Lhalung Monastery – also known as Sarkhang and golden Temple – is situated at a height of 3658 meters. We spend the night at an authentic local homestay with a local family here.
Overnight stay in Lhalung.
Day 05 : Lhalung – Pin Valley – Kungri – Mudh – Kaza (3 – 4 Hours)
Imagine a national park with an abundance of animals and birds, with some rare plant varieties, a river that gushes when it isn’t frozen and trekking opportunities for the adventure-seekers. The Pin Valley promises all this and more. Declared a national park in 1987, Pin Valley has altitudes ranging from 11,000 to 20,000 feet and is home to at least 12 endangered snow leopards. In addition, other animals indigenous to the region and park are the Siberian ibex, bharal, weasel, red fox and marten. Birds such as the pika, griffon, golden eagle, bearded vulture, chukor and raven paint the skies a pretty picture.
Later, we head to Kaza – the district capital of Spiti Valley.
Overnight at a hotel in Kaza.
Day 06 : Kaza – Langza – Hikkim – Komik – Ki Monastery – Kibber – Losar (5 – 6 Hours)
Today, we visit the world famous Ki Monastery. With over 1000 years’ worth stories to tell, the Ki Monastery situated at a height of 13,668 feet was founded by a disciple of the famous Atisha, in the 11th century CE. This monastery is famous as a prominent centre of learning as well as refuge for Tibetans. Being remotely located atop a hill overlooking endless plains, the Ki Monastery is an obvious choice for those seeking peace and calm. Then we will move farther down the valley to the picturesque village of Kibber. This formerly highest permanently inhabited village of this region, is also a popular base camp to embark on adventure and treks to adjoining mountains of high altitude. Next – we drive to Komik – The highest village in Asia. Komik is situated at a height of 4513 metres. This farming village has a population of 84 people, living in utter isolation. After Komik, we head to Hikkim – which houses the highest post office in the world. Don’t forget to send a postcard home from here! Later, we head to the picturesque village of Langza. Once you are here, you can walk about the village and visit the ancient Lang (Temple) which is estimated to be around 1000 years old. At Langza, you explore a land very rich with fossils of Marine animals and plants which were here millions of years ago. We return to Losar in the evening.
Overnight at a hotel in Losar.
Day 07 : Losar – Chandratal Lake – Manali
This day, we commence our journey back home and trace our steps back on the Kaza – Manali road. However, we take one last stop at another Spitian wonder – Chandratal Lake. The mystical and beautiful Chandratal Lake, which translates to Moon Lake, is located at a height of 14,000 feet. The Chandra Bhaga mountain range forms a striking backdrop for the lake, which changes appearance according to the pictures painted in the sky. After capturing the colours of the beautiful Chandratal Lake, we drive to Manali.