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Ladakh - The Land of High Passes


The World's Highest Motorable Road

Roughly the size of Scotland, Ladakh is part of the northern Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, and has a population of less than 300,000. It was the crossroads of the ancient trade routes from South Asia and until the end of the 19th century, mule trains carrying shawls and spices made the journey from Amritsar through Ladakh to Yarkand in China. This is a haven of Tibetan culture. Ladakh's people are a mix of Tibetan and Indo Aryan. It became a part of independent India in 1948.


  • Population: 270,126
  • Area: 86,904 km²
  • Major Language: Ladakhi, Tibetan & Hindi
  • Major religions: Buddhist & Hindu
  • Currency: Indian Rupees (INR)

Many Ladakhis are living in the high mountains with multicolored walls and villages unchanged for centuries. Many of the mountain-savvy inhabitants are dependant on tourism. Other business possibilities in the region are very difficult as snow cuts off the highway that connects it to the rest of India. The journey to Ladakh will certainly be exciting because people who spend half of their year in isolation, when villages are cut off by snow, get to meet people from another world.

General Information
  • Best Time to Visit

    High-altitude Ladakh, in the far northern Indian Himalayas, has an extreme climate with a long winter. Hence, the most popular and best time to visit Ladakh is during the region's summer when the snow on the high passes melts.

    The climate in Ladakh is divided into two seasons: four months of summer (from June until September) and eight months of winter (from October until May). Summer temperatures range from 15-25 degree Celsius. In winter, the temperature can drop as low as -40 degree Celsius.

  • Visa & Permit
    • Inner line permits are required to visit Pangang Tso Khardung La Tso Moirri Nubra Valley, Changthang.
    • Inner Line Permits are not required for Zanskar and Suru Valley.
    • No permits are required to visit the local places near Leh town or Leh local sightseeing, places on Srinagar Leh Highway, places on Manali–Leh Highway.
    • Inner line permits are issued from DC office in Leh town.
    • The Leh DC office operates from 9.00 AM to 5.00 PM. However, the application forms need to be submitted before 3 pm.
    • The Inner Line Permit costs Rs 20 a day per person and an additional Rs 10 towards Red Cross Society.
    • Self attested photocopies of valid nationality proof and Photo-IDs are necessary to procure Inner Line Permits.