Set deep in the Indian Himalayas on the western edge of the Tibetan plateau, Ladakh, or “Little Tibet” is a mystical land that remains untouched by the outer world. Ladakh – the ‘Land of the High Passes’ – is among the most stunning parts of the Indian Himalayas. An oasis of tranquility and natural beauty, Ladakh is an ideal retreat for those living in cosmopolitan cities. Here we have listed some of the noteworthy attractions from around Ladakh:
At 3,500m, the capital city of Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir welcomes you with its lofty mountains. Leh was once an integral part of western Tibet. The peaceful, willow-lined streets and bustling bazaar life of Singge Namgyal’s 17th century capital give you a chance to experience historic Tibet. There are loads to see in Leh. The newly-restored ruins of the 17th century Leh Palace, the ancient 15th century Leh Fort and the attached Namgyal Tsemo Gompa, other historic Tibetan Buddhist monasteries, mosques, narrow back alleys with tiny antique shops tucked away amidst the many ancient stupas and architectural remnant all give your eyes plenty to see and hearts plenty to feel.
Tso Moriri Lake
Situated at 4,530m, Tso Moriri is one of the highlights of Ladakh. After passing a section of small cliffs with offerings of white rocks on our right, followed by an incredibly reflective section of the lakeside, bordered with flat multi-hued slate and mica, you reach Tso Moriri, a little piece of paradise. Mighty, endless, vast, abundant, clear, beautiful and pure, Tso Moriri touches and moves you like only nature can. The lake’s water is fed by springs and nearby mountains. At Tso Moriri, all you can do is bow down and feel enthralled that you got a chance to witness it.
Tso Kar Lake
Trek along the salty marshes and salt flats of Tso Kar Lake. Along a salty, crusted and baked plateau next to more boggy grasslands sits the Tso Kar, in all its glory. Tso Kar Lake is the ‘salt lake’ of Rupshu, previously a site of large salt excavations by the Rupshu-pa nomads. Today Tso Kar Lake is not as salty as it previously was, and the salt trade has diminished in importance but bird life is still abundant in this wetland, especially long-legged wading birds and rare migratory cranes.
One of the most idyllic of Ladakhi villages, Teri Phu is surrounded by beautiful, weathered red canyons, valleys of Zanskari wild rose bushes, languid willows and other trees. The village itself has vivid green barley and pea fields, with several irrigation ditches, large, white-washed and tri-colored chortens, willows and an active school in the upper reaches of the village. The village is also the home to the majestic Teri Gompa, an important pilgrimage site for Ladakhis. The village’s another monastery is the Drukpa Gompa, said to be 700-years old, and the ancient interior is worth a visit.
Ladakh may as well be the land of the most beautiful high altitude lakes with its array of lakes. And among the most beautiful and the most popular is the Pangong Lake. This beautiful water reservoir is about 134km long and 60 percent of the lake falls under China. So, if you take a ride along the lake, you will be visiting two countries. The clear blue water of the lake reflects the towering mountains all around. The scenic beauty with the tranquil and serene environment appears too good to be real. Drinking in the fascinating landscape one simply loses all sense of time and space. Few years back it was a beautiful brackish lake known to very few people. It was relatively unknown before it got popularized by the Bollywood blockbuster film 3 Idiots.