Getting to Ladakh
Although Ladakh is located on a high altitude, it is quite accessible by Air and Road. Here’s how you can travel.
Direct flights operate from Delhi, Jammu and Srinagar.
From Kashmir: 430 kms. Travel Time: 1 or 2 days
The Srinagar-Leh highway (No.NH 1D) is about 430 kms. It crosses the first La (Pass) at Zojila (3500m) where the highest tank battle was once fought. This pass remains closed from around November till April (depending upon the prevailing weather conditions).
Dras, the first major village is the second coldest inhabited place. Nearby is the ‘Kargil’ war memorial surrounded by Tiger hill and Tololing. Kargil town is about halfway and is a major town of transit and refuelling.
There are another two passes: Mankila and Fotula to finally descend in the Indus valley. Although it’s a passage through mountains, most of the stretch is a smooth ride.
From Manali: 470 kms. Travel Time: 2 or 3 days
The Manali-Leh highway is about 470 kms and remains open from May through September (depending upon the prevailing weather conditions).
Well, this highway is not only a ride but an adventure. The road negotiates several high passes like Rohtang (3980m), Baralacha La (4890m), that cuts through the Great Himalaya Range, Lachung La (5000m) and finally Taglang La (5325m) that cuts through the Zanskar range. The more than 40 kms ride through one of the vast and desolate high altitude plains of Skyangchu Thang is an experience by itself. The road is a bit rough, particularly in early and late season. However, there are various temporary transit points providing basic services to travellers.