If you love road-trips as much as I do, and plan to take one over ever small or big vacation in India
The road to Zanskar
The road to Zanskar might be one of the only remaining wildernesses in our country. I had trekked to Zanskar from Lahaul and after spending a few days in the valley had found a way to exit.
There were a few shared taxis going from Padum to Kargil but I was keen on seeing Ramgdum Gompa as well. After seeing the pretty sights of Suru river basin from the monastery, I was trying to find a ride and all I could find is a truck. It was a young guy learning how to drive. That was a hair raising experience on this treacherous road.
Roaming in Ladakh in Winter
I have had the privilege of traveling to Ladakh in winter last year. The passes freeze over, so we had to fly in to Leh. But after that it was all about roads. The city which is no stranger to traffic jams in the season, was practically empty in winter.
It was pure bliss to explore Ladakh in winter, we almost had whole region to us! We did not venture very far but it was fun to sit inside a heated car and roam around!
Road-trips in Spiti
Our local stop was at Spituk for the Spituk Gustor Festival, where the locals outnumbered the tourists by a fair margin. Our first trip outside the town was to Lamayuru! The route is scenic throughout. Just before Lamayuru, you get to admire the moonscape. We stopped there for a while but with the temperatures being in the range -10 degree Celsius we would quickly get back to the comfort of the car. Our next stop was the Lamayuru Monastery where we were the only tourists around! On our way back, we stopped at the Alchi Monastery. Members of our team had to go looking for the caretaker so that he would open the monastery. It was that empty in winter!
Spiti has always been ranked high in my mind when I compare Leh and Spiti landscapes. And I love to share my perspective with some data points and facts. Exploring Spiti well needs good timw in hand and moneywise it can be pretty cheap with like minded group.
It was my second sabbatical when I planned Spiti with Photographer friends. It was a wattsapp message which made the plan in 3 days. The craziest part was to plan pur trip in Santro and I dont recommend it to anyone, although we enjoyed it.