This tour package covers Spiti valley and Mcleodganj, Dhamrshala along with some time in Manali. It’s a complete mixture of adventure, good sightseeing and beautiful mountains of Himalayan as well as Dhauladhar mountain ranges.
Starting early your vehicle will collect you in Chandigarh before proceeding to Shimla for brunch. From Shimla drive past the Wangtu bridge to Sarahan where you will rest for the night. If there is time in the afternoon In Sarahan explore the famous Bird Park or visit the Bhima Kali temple one of the most important temples of Kali in India where there use to be human sacrifice before 18th Century.
Tonight you will stay in the meadows and apple orchards of Kalpa village, overlooking Reckong Peo, Kinnaurs’ district headquarters and kickoff point for Spiti. Our guests stay in a quaint and comfortable hotel nestled amongst acres of apple and cherry trees!
Here the landscape changes to Desert Mountains. As we drive through the desert terrain we move through the village of Puh to reach Nako for overnight stay. Visit the Lake & the Monastery of Nako walk through the Village of Nako. After our short hike we continue through some very breathtaking mountain scenery past the border checkpost of Sumdo into Spiti Valley proper, passing within one mountain of the Tibetan border.
The famous Tabo Monastery is more than 1010 years old and home to many precious Thanka paintings, including the Pillar of a Thousand Buddhas. The entry to the monastery complex, covering in total 6300 square meters, is made of earthen walls with marvelous colourful frescoes inside. The ancient paintings depict the life cycle of The Buddha, and legends from the Jataka Tales and were made in the Tibetan style by artists from Kashmir. Tabo monastery is listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. It is Also called the Ajanta of the Himalayas. Be sure to visit the nearby meditation caves to experience a moment of tranquility and introspection!
Located a 3 hour drive from Kaza, Dhankar is the ancient capital of Spiti and seat of the Spitian Kings and is home to their ruined castle as well as a splendid 16th Century Monastery. Situated mid way between Kaza and Tabo it’s slightly of the route on top of a steep sided mountain ridge jutting out over the valley. To properly visit the fort and monastery at Dhankar requires several hours and from Dhankar it is only a short trek to Dhankar Lake, allow for one and a half hours roundtrip hike.
We will carry on to one of the prettiest villages in Spiti – Lalung.The largest village in Lingti Valley, Lalung is a picturesque village with inhabited by some of the friendliest people you will ever meet. The literal translation of Lingti in Spitian is ‘an instrument that cuts rock’ this river does seem to carve through the rocky landscape, descending from its source in neighboring Tibet.The Lalung Monastery is famous for its statue of the Three Cornered Buddha, made with three sides to symbolize the Buddha looking in all directions at once. Legend has it that Rinchen Zangpo, founder of Spiti’s major monasteries came here 1000 years ago. He planted a willow tree in the soil above the village and instructed the locals that should the tree survive, they must found a monastery. Today, in front of the 10th century monastery sits an ancient, gnarled and revered willow trees.
First visit of the day will be the famous Ki Monastry. Located at 4120m, 14km from Kaza on the Kaza to Kibber Road, the car will stop at the base of the monastery hill for the ultimate photo opportunity of this remarkable structure. Visitors will be able to trek around the monastery and admire the excellent collections of ancient paintings and scriptures contained in the large monastic complex. Occupying nearly all sides of the hill, Ki Monastery belongs Gelugpa Sect of Tibetan Buddhism.
Then we will move farther down the valley to the picturesque village of Kibber. Kibber is one of the biggest villages in Spiti, located at an altitude of 4250 meters. and is one of the only other villages to offer restaurants and formal guesthouse accommodation besides Tabo and Kaza. We will overnight in Kibber and spend the rest of the evening looking for wildlife on the slopes around Kibber’s steep canyon.
From Kibber it is a short trek to Chicham Village, located across a sharp and precipitous canyon, traversable by thrilling wire cross-ways (known locally as the Jula) but also reachable keeping both feet on the ground! This area is home to one of the highest populations of Snow Leopards and spotting one of these rare creatures is a definite possibility. At the least, the watchful observer can be sure of seeing some of the big cat’s prey: ibex or blue sheep graze on the slopes between the two villages and the local guides all but guarantee Tibetan Wolf sightings if you can wake up before dawn and climb the steep slopes behind the village to their lair before sunrise. By nighht, we’ll reach Chandrataal Lake for a night in the campsite
Early morning drive to Manali, located 220 km away from Kaza, the total time of this trip will take approximately 8 To 10 Hours. During the course of the journey we drive across the imposing heights of Kunzum Pass located at an altitude of 4551mts. We will stop for lunch in Batal near the halfway point before reaching the famous Rohtang Pass for some late afternoon tea. We’ll reach Manali in evening for rest.
Drive from Manali to Mcleodganj will take around 7-8 hours. This day will be free after checkin at hotel. You can take a stroll in the market of town after some rest.
This day will be spent in Mcleodganj, the capital of Tibetan government in exile and residence of Dalai Lama. The day will begin with a visit to Tsuglagkhang monastery. It contains three major idols of Sakyamuni Buddha, Avalokitesvara and Padmasambhava which are made of gilded bronze. This place is spiritually very important for Tibetan Buddhists and people from all over the world come here to pray and meditate. You can see monks from diverse backgrounds meditating or debating in their colourful manner. Then we’ll visit Norbulingka (meaning Jewel Garden) Institute, which is an important place of Tibetan studies and culture and arts. It’s a great place to look at and buy Tibetan art, books etc. Last stop for the day will be Dip Thekchen Choeling Monastery with it’s museum and golden roof.
This day will be spent in lap of nature to recharge your batteries and to reflect on the things that you learnt in previous 2 days. We’ll first drive or walk to St John’s Church in Wilderness which is nestled between thick groves of pine trees at a very picturesque spot. It was built in 1852 with black stone and looks really pretty surrounded by trees from all sides. Then it’s time to visit ancient Bhagsunag temple and a walk to Bhagsu waterfall nearby. The temple is ancient with dozens of stories associated with it but has been renovated recently. After this, we’ll walk or drive through the winding mountain roads and trails to visit Dal Lake which is situated at the base of a hill covered with dense cover of trees. There is a small temple nearby which you can visit. Further on, we’ll visit Naddi where the road ends and enjoy the view of sunset over mountain ranges.
This is one place about which not many people know about and miss. But it’s still a great place to visit if you love hiking and water. We’ll first drive to a place called Gallu ka Mandir in Dharmkot and take a trail which leads to the waterfall. It’s a walk of around 5 km and through jungle but the altitude doesn’t change much. There is a pretty mountain stream flowing down the slope forming a beautiful waterfall at the end. Your exertion is rewarded by a cup of hot steaming tea and snacks from a small shop which operates there for a few months of the year. We’ll then walk back to our car to reach Mcleodganj and take a walk through the streets and enjoy the dinner in any of the restaurants.
This 9 km (one way) trek is the absolute must do for anyone visiting Mcleodganj. By difficulty, it’s classified as easy to medium and can be completed in one day. The trek begins from Dharmkot and the trail takes you through a beautiful jungle full of countless trees, flowers, butterflies and birds. The walk is rewarded by a stunning view of Dhualdhar mountain ranges on Triund ridge. It’s also possible to walk to the snowline and extend the trek to 3 Days Triund Snowline trek or spend the night in Triund in a camp to make it a 2 days camping and trekking journey. Night back in hotel for a hot shower to relax tired limbs.
Drop at airport or Chandigarh