If you are an adventurer who is looking for an extraordinary trip, Leh and Ladakh is your destination! The Charming Pangong Tso Lake, the breathtaking sand dunes of Hunder Village, the spectacular landscapes at Shanti Stupa, a thrilling cup of soup at Highest Motorable Pass, and exploring the Tibetan culture while having some peaceful time at en route monasteries; we have covered everything in details in the following Leh Ladakh trip itinerary for a 4-days, 6-days, and 10-days Leh and Ladakh tour.
You can find many websites to provide you itinerary as per your needs. Here I will summarize what you can achieve in a short or long Ladakh tour.
4 days Leh Ladakh trip itinerary
- 1st Day: Take Flight from Delhi to Leh.
- 2nd Day: Day 2 is required at Leh for acclimatization. One day is not enough. You can enjoy shopping at Leh Main market during this time. But you should not do any excessive physical activity.
- 3rd Day: Make a Day trip to Pangong Lake. You can reach Pangong Lake within 5 hours. The same day, come back to Leh Hotel.
- 4th Day: Take Flight back to Delhi from Leh.
6 days Leh Ladakh trip itinerary
- 1st Day: Take Flight from Delhi to Leh.
- 2nd Day: Day 2 is required at Leh for your body to adapt for high altitude and avoid Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). One day is not enough. You can enjoy shopping at Leh Main market during this time. But you should not do any excessive physical activity.
- 3rd Day: Leh – Khardung La – Diskit – Hunder
- Head for Nubra Valley and stay overnight at Hunder / Diskit
- While you are traveling on the Khardunga La Pass On the way enjoy a cup of soup at Highest Motorable Pass (as claimed) Khardung La
- At Diskit you can see monasteries with tallest lord Buddha statue and at Hunder you can enjoy the camel safari and sand dunes
- About 5-6 Hrs drive, depending upon the breaks you take in between and at Khardung La
- 4th Day: Hunder / Diskit – Sumur – Panamik – Sumur – Khardung La – Leh
- In Sumur visit a famous monastery and at Panamik enjoy the hot water springs
- Overnight at Leh
- About 7-9 Hrs drive, depending upon the breaks you take in between
- 5th Day: Make a Day trip to Pangong Lake. You can reach Pangong Lake within 5 hours. The same day, come back to Leh Hotel.
- 6th Day: Take Flight back to Delhi from Leh.
10 days Leh Ladakh trip itinerary
I recommend this itinerary as it covers most of the tourists’ places:
- 1st Day: Delhi to Manali
- 2nd Day: Manali to Jispa/Sarchu
- 3rd Day: Jispa/Sarchu to Leh
- 4th Day: Leh
- 5th Day: Leh to Nubra Valley
- 6th Day: Nubra Valley to Leh
- 7th Day: Leh to Pangong Tso and get back to Leh on the same day
- 8th Day: Leh to Sarchu
- 9th Day: Sarchu to Manali
- 10th Day: Manali to Delhi
The first drawback that this plan has is that it leaves Srinagar Leh highway out, but at the same time ensures that you cover as much as possible from rest of the areas; without stressing yourself or rushing too much. Think of it this way; Manali to Leh is easily doable in 2 days whereas via Srinagar it will easily take about 3 days to reach Leh. With only 10 days in hand hence, it is best to leave Srinagar Leh highway for another trip at another time. For now, reach Leh via Manali and return by the same route.
A detailed explanation of the above Leh Ladakh tour itineraries:
Another problem while traveling this way will be the permit required to cross Rohtang Pass. It is a mandatory permit given on first come first serve basis and without it, you cannot get to the other side of Rohtang. It can be obtained either in person from DM office Manali or applied for online. Obtaining in person means that you will submit documents at the office before noon and collect your permit post noon; hence an entire day wasted in the process at Manali. Since you are short on time, you cannot really afford to do so and best keep your permit arranged in advance; which can be done in two ways.
The first one is to apply for Rohtang Permit online. The second way out is to contact a hotel in Manali and request them to arrange it for you. Several hotels provide this service in lieu of a small charge and if you are able to find one; then send them your IDs; wire the money and book your night stay with them. If you could not find a hotel agreeing to it, then try contacting a travel agent.
Day 1, 2 and 3: Delhi to Leh
Not much to say about day 1 really except for that it will be one long and monotonous journey. It can easily take about 12-13 hours to get to Manali from Delhi so an early start is highly advised. I am assuming here that you have already arranged for the permit so can start for Leh on Day 2 itself. Start early from Manali as well so that you have plenty of time for sightseeing and breaks. Cross Rohtang Pass and descend down to Kokhsar and from there, continue all the way till Keylong. Do not, however, forget to tank up at Tandi as this will be the last petrol pump en route.
Keylong is a small town and a lot of people stay here as well because there are plenty of hotels here. For more details on accommodation available on Manali Leh highway, please read Hotels, Camp Sites and Guesthouses on Manali to Leh Road. If you want your next day not to be hectic then you can stay at Sarchu, But in Sarchu, you will only get Camps.
For a list of must-visit places between Manali and Leh, please read Tourist Attractions on Manali Leh highway.
Your third day will again be a long journey so you must start from Jispa by the first light of the day. Keep your breaks limited and depending upon your speed, you should make it to Leh well in time to look for a hotel before dark.
Day 4: Leh
When short on time, a lot of people try to avoid staying at Leh altogether. They arrive in the city and on the next day, head to their way to Nubra or Pangong. However, this is neither advisable nor the best thing to do. After your arrival, you must stay at least a day in the city. You can use this one day in Leh city to get an Inner Line Permit as it is required for visiting any other area in Ladakh.
Even if you hurry, it will still be almost mid-day by the time you have the permits in your hand; and midday will be a bit late to start towards any other destination. Do not worry, you will not get bored. There is plenty to see in the Leh city; as a matter of fact, the entire town is a tourist attraction in itself. Skipping Leh will leave your trip incomplete.
Also, a significant point to note is that you have traveled from Delhi to Leh within three days. Your body will be exhausted by long journeys and struggling to come to terms with high altitude. You must hence take rest on this day and let your body adjust to ensure that the journey further is hassle-free.
Day 5: Leh to Nubra Valley
On Day 5, you will start your journey from Leh to Nubra valley. You should start early in the day so that you get enough time for sightseeing. Have your first stop of the day at about kilometers from Leh at Khardung La. Enjoy a cup of tea at a canteen run by the Indian Army at the top. After crossing Khardung La, you will descend into Nubra Valley. Nubra Valley has several towns like Sumur, Panamik, Hunder or Diskit to get accommodation. Of all, I would recommend staying at Diskit because it has most options in terms of hotels and guesthouses.
Depending on the time you have, visit the Diskit monastery, or sand dunes in Hunder and enjoy the camel ride. Apart from a rough patch around Khardung La top, between South and North Pullu, the roads are good.
Day 6: Nubra Valley to Leh
On Day 6, you will return to Leh by the same road across Khardung La. While on the way, take the turn towards Panamik from Khalsar before coming back to Leh. In Panamik, you can enjoy the hot water springs and if you like you can have a dip in the warm water. From Panamik, return to Khalsar again and continue on your way back to Leh.
Day 7: Leh to Pangong Tso and get back to Leh on the same day
The destination for today is the famous Pangong Lake; which in recent years has become the very symbol of Ladakh. Travel time from Leh to Pangong can easily be 5-6 hours depending upon your speed and breaks. Take the highway from Leh to Manali until Karu and then take a turn towards Sakti village. After crossing Sakti village, you will cross Chang La and proceed towards the lake. Enjoy 1 to 2 hours at Lake and get back to Leh on Same day. This will reduce your traveling time for the next day.
Day 7: Leh to Pang / Sarchu
Today, start towards Manali. Depending upon your speed, you can either chose to stay at Pang or Sarchu for the night.
Day 8: Pang / Sarchu to Manali
This will again be a long run so you must start at 6 AM. You will be on the same road which you took to reach Leh. To save time do not take too many stops and you can reach Manali by 5 PM.
Day 9: Manali to Delhi
This is the last day of our 10-days Leh Ladakh trip itinerary. There is nothing much to do on this journey as this is going to be a long tedious return journey to home.