Embark on an adventure of a lifetime as you go for a Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi, which is known as one of the best travel experiences in the country. Renowned for its rugged landscape, glacial lakes, high-altitude passes, snow-capped mountains and unique cultural traditions, Leh Ladakh offers a calming escape from the rush of city life. From bikers and trekkers to photographers and adventurers, Leh Ladakh attracts tourists from all over the world. Its one-of-a-kind Himalayan beauty, peaceful atmosphere, and possibilities for adventurous activities like camping, trekking and biking make Leh Ladakh a much sought-after destination. Explore the ancient Buddhist traditions and diverse cultures of Ladakh as you go on sightseeing tours to local monasteries and markets and relish authentic delicacies cooked by locals. Enjoy the calmness of village life as you admire the vibrant settlements and interact with the friendly locals on your Ladakh trip from Delhi.
By Air: Ladakh has direct connectivity with Delhi via air, with several flights offering services between Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport of Leh and Indira Gandhi International Airport of Delhi. Ladakh is a quick one-and-a-half-hour flight from Delhi. Hire a cab from the Leh Airport to reach the main city, which is approximately a distance of five kilometres.
By Road: A Ladakh trip from Delhi can be done via the 1000-kilometre-long Delhi-Manali-Leh Route or the 1230-kilometre-long Delhi-Srinagar-Leh Route. Although the Manali route is shorter, the Srinagar route has a gradual increase in altitude, allowing travellers to acclimatise to the change. A drive with several halts along either route takes two to three days. Travellers can also take a direct bus from Delhi to Ladakh which takes approximately 40 hours.
By Air and Road: If you wish to combine thrills and comfort, take a flight from Delhi to Srinagar and then drive to Ladakh. Hop on a 1.5-hour flight from Indira Gandhi International Airport of Delhi to Sheikh ul-Alam International Airport of Srinagar. You can then drive via bike or car from Srinagar to Ladakh. The drive from Srinagar to Ladakh takes approximately 11-12 hours.
The best time for a Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi is from April to August. The average temperature during this period is moderate with clear skies and negligible chances of snow and rain. It is recommended to avoid the winter season as low temperatures and frequent snowfall hamper movement and acclimatisation.
Route 1: Delhi-Manali-Leh
Distance: 1,005 kilometres (approx.)
Best time to visit: The best time for a Ladakh trip from Delhi through this route is in the months of May-June and September-October when the roads are clear with pleasant weather to explore the region. It is advisable to avoid this route during monsoons and snowfall.
Route Map: Delhi – Chandigarh – Manali – Rohtang – Gramphu – Kokhsar – Keylong – Jispa – Darcha – Zingzingbar – Baralacha La – Bharatpur – Sarchu – Gata Loops – Nakee La – Lachulung La – Pang – Tanglang La – Gya – Upshi – Karu - Leh
Route 2: Delhi-Srinagar-Leh
Distance: 1,230 kilometres (approx.)
Best time to visit: The best time for a Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi through this route is from June to October, the temperatures are milder and more pleasant during this time, making it an ideal time for outdoor activities and sightseeing.The route opens before the Delhi-Manali-Leh route and remains open from April to mid-November.
Route Map: Delhi – Patnitop – Srinagar – Sonmarg – Zozi La – Drass – Kargil – Batalik – Dah - Leh
The first stop on your Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi is Chandigarh, the iconic city known for its cleanliness. During your halt, you can watch stunning sunsets at Sukhna Lake and take a stroll in the Rock Garden. Travellers can also shop for local goodies and try delectable local dishes before heading off towards the hills.
As you approach Manali, the mesmerising views will take you on a scenic journey of changing landscapes - from the endless plains to the enchanting hills of Himachal Pradesh. A short stop here during your Ladakh trip from Delhi means a quick visit to the iconic Hidimba Devi Temple, the forts of Naggar and Kuthar, and the waterfalls like Jogni and Rahala. Shop for unique goods like Tibetan woollens and relish local delicacies like Siddu at Mall Road.
A must-visit stop on the Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi is the Rohtang Pass, which ranks among the most sought-after adventure destinations in the Himalayas. As one of the highest Himalayan passes, Himachal’s Rohtang offers mesmerising views of snow-capped landscapes, mountain peaks, valleys and rivers. Enjoy thrilling activities like skiing and sledging and make sure to click memorable pictures as you drive through the Atal Tunnel towards Ladakh.
A detour into Keylong during your Ladakh trip from Delhi promises never-seen-before views of the Himalayas. From meadows and mountain peaks to snow-capped landscapes and clear lakes, Keylong offers amazing sightseeing and photography opportunities to travellers. Explore the numerous ancient Buddhist monasteries here and try authentic Tibetan and Pahari delicacies. Tourists can also go for fun-filled adventures like trekking and camping.
Rejuvenate your city-weary souls as you stop at Jispa, a small yet vibrant Himalayan village en route to your Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi. Stroll through the quaint settlement as you interact with locals and explore the ancient monastery and post office. Admire the colourful little houses of the villagers as you sit on the banks of the Bhaga River and soak in the peace of the mountains.
Explore the old-world charm of Darcha, a secluded settlement dotted with simple stone huts and beautiful campsites. Located along the Leh-Manali Highway in Himachal Pradesh, Darcha is ideal for an overnight stay on the beautiful banks of the Bhaga River during your Ladakh trip from Delhi. Travellers also get to indulge in delicious local snacks like Thukpa and shop for local handicrafts like woollen shawls before they go higher up into the mountains.
One of the most popular stops during the Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi is the iconic Zingzing Bar, a multi-purpose shack that offers refreshments and stays to weary travellers. Take a moment to acclimate to the high altitude during your journey and indulge in a cosy break at this must-stop destination. Savour a warm cup of coffee and treat your taste buds to some delicious piping hot Maggi while you catch your breath and prepare to continue your adventure. Zingzing Bar is also the final stop before the steep ascent to Leh kickstarts from Baralacha La.
A beloved destination for trekkers and bikers on the Ladakh trip from Delhi, Baralacha La Pass offers stunning unrestricted views of the Himalayas and the snow-capped landscapes of the Zanskar Range. Take a break from your tiring journey as you admire the pristine beauty of the mountains at Baralacha La.
As travellers reach the borders of Himachal Pradesh and Ladakh, they can explore Sarchu, a stunning campsite on the Leh-Manali Highway. Soak in the calming beauty of the Himalayas as you spend a night camping under the stars. Travellers can also embark on short treks to local attractions like Chandratal Lake, Key Monastery and Kunzum Pass before restarting their Delhi-Leh trip.
Embark on an exhilarating journey during your Ladakh trip from Delhi, as you experience the ultimate adrenaline rush driving through the 21 consecutive loops at Gata Loops. Situated at a staggering altitude of around 17,000 feet, this ten-kilometre-long stretch of winding roads promises a one-of-a-kind adventure that will leave you feeling alive. For a unique and offbeat experience, make a pit stop at the nineteenth loop to offer water and hear the captivating tale of the renowned 'ghost' temple, as narrated by the locals.
Among the most adventurous passes on the Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi is the Lachulung La Pass, which lies at a mind-boggling altitude of 5,059 metres. Witness the scenic beauty of the valleys of Tsarap Chu and Tosay as you cross this challenging pass. Travellers can also trek through rugged paths and secluded villages when the Pass opens from May to September every year.
A Ladakh trip from Delhi is filled with stunning stopovers and iconic destinations, of which Pang is extremely popular among travellers. Travellers love to admire the pristine beauty of the mountains and valleys of the remote village. One can enjoy local delicacies and sip hot tea from roadside stalls. Experience the magic of sleeping under the stars by spending a night in the stunning tents that are available at this location. Relax and unwind in the serene surroundings as you immerse yourself in the natural beauty of your surroundings..
One of the many high-altitude passes on your Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi is the Tanglang La Pass, known as among the highest motorable mountain passes in the world. Soak in uninterrupted views of the snow-covered Himalayas and flowing streams as you explore local attractions like Shanti Stupa, Hall of Fame, Namgyal Tsemo Gompa and Thiksey Monastery.
Visit one of the highest civilised settlements of India as you stop at Upshi during your Ladakh trip from Delhi. Located on the Manali-Leh Highway approximately 45 kilometres away from Leh, the village offers stunning views of the Indus valley and bird’s eye views of surrounding snow-capped landscapes from the local helipad. Interact with the friendly locals and explore the Mahe Bridge and Tso Kar before continuing your journey to Leh.
The final stopover location on your Ladakh trip from Delhi, Karu lies at the end of the Manali-Leh Highway at Chang La Pass. From a rare ATM facility to the only petrol pump before Leh, Karu is an essential halt for most travellers who wish to relax at local accommodations and admire the beautiful mountains and streams that lead up to the Pangong Lake.
At the end of a gruelling long journey lies Leh, the most prominent tourist destination showcasing the rugged beauty of Ladakh. Explore ancient monasteries and historical landmarks like Shanti Stupa and Royal Leh Palace. Travellers can also enjoy magnificent views of snow-capped mountains and natural attractions like Tso Moriri and Magnetic Hill. From friendly locals to vibrant cultural festivals like Spituk Gastor, Leh is a Himalayan paradise with something on offer for all kinds of tourists every season.
No lake in India compares to the majesty of Srinagar’s Dal Lake, known as the most iconic attraction of Kashmir that makes the land a “Paradise on Earth”. Unwind on a Shikhara on the Dal as you admire the sunset with your loved ones. Enjoy the Kashmiri hospitality and gorge on local delicacies like Kahwa when you stop over at Srinagar during your Ladakh trip from Delhi.
A true wonderland, Sonmarg is one of the most stunning stopovers on Delhi-Leh trips. The valley transforms into a snow-filled paradise in the winter season where travellers can indulge in adventures like skiing, white river rafting and snow-pedalling. Admire the picturesque snow-capped Himalayas as you explore local attractions like Vishansar Lake, Nilagrad River and Zoji La Pass.
Known as the ‘Gateway to Ladakh’, Drass Valley stands along the Leh-Kargil Highway as a reminder of the 1999 Kargil War, which kickstarted from the valley. As the coldest place in India, a stopover at Drass means a compulsory visit to the iconic Kargil War Memorial. Admire the stunning views of the Himalayas and listen to fascinating stories from the friendly locals.
A prominent halt on Delhi-Leh trips, Kargil goes beyond its reputation for the 1999 Indo-Pakistan War and offers enchanting views of the Himalayan landscape to travellers. Stroll along the river Indus as you enjoy authentic local delicacies like Rogan Josh and Kahwa and admire the warm hospitality of the locals. Explore the quaint villages and soak in the beauty of the Zanskar valley before moving ahead in your journey.
A lesser-known yet equally mesmerising destination to explore on the Leh Ladakh trip from Delhi is Mulbekh, a small town that boasts rich cultural traditions and stunning views of the Himalayas. The Mulbekh Monastery, which has two gompas belonging to two different Buddhist sects, is a must-visit attraction in the town, as is the famous Chamba Statue.
A dash of history awaits at Lamayuru, the final stopover on your Ladakh trip from Delhi. The small Himalayan town is known for its iconic monastery which is visible from a distance on the Srinagar-Leh Highway. Explore the iconic ‘Moonland’ of Ladakh as you spot the moon-like landscapes around the monastery. Don't miss out on visiting the breathtaking Lamayuru while en route to Leh. This eleventh-century marvel is renowned for its exquisite architecture and awe-inspiring interiors, making it an absolute must-visit destination.
An exceptionally rewarding visual experience awaits at the end of your 1,230-kilometre-long journey as you enter Leh, the most important destination of Ladakh. Admire the snow-capped mountains and lush valleys as you relax at home-like accommodations and enjoy the warm hospitality of the locals. Explore the challenging landscape dotted with spiritual and historical landmarks as you relish on local delicacies during your Leh stay.
An important aspect of the Delhi-Leh Road trip is to ensure a full fuel tank for a hassle-free journey.
Petrol Pumps on the Manali- Leh Highway:
Petrol Pumps on the Srinagar-Leh Highway:
While cashless transactions are the norm in much of India, cash is needed for transactions in Jammu and Kashmir.
ATMs on the Manali-Leh Highway:
ATMs on the Srinagar-Leh Highway:
It is recommended that you get your vehicle checked before embarking on the Delhi-Leh trip. Mechanics and puncture repair shops on the Manali-Leh Highway can be found at Marhi, Khoksar, Keylong, Darcha, Sarchu and Upshi, while on the Srinagar-Leh Highway, they can be found at Kalgan, Gund, Baltal, Lamayuru, Mulbekh and Nimmu.
Enjoy the thrill of driving through the highest motorable pass in the world as you head to Khardung La, the famous gateway to Shyok and Nubra Valley. With the snow-capped Himalayas and deep valleys on both sides, Khardung La is a picturesque treat. Drive across secluded villages as you soak in the peaceful charm of this iconic adventurous attraction on your Delhi-Leh trip.
Soak in the vibrant cultural traditions of Ladakh as you visit the Shanti Stupa, a stunning symbol of peace constructed by the Buddhists of Ladakh. Dating back to 1991, the bewitching white-domed Stupa offers unmatched views of Leh from the hilltop, making it one of the most popular attractions of the area. And if you visit during the festive season, gear up for a lively cultural celebration at the Shanti Stupa.
Admire the ever-changing colours of Ladakh’s most renowned lake, the Pangong Tso, which lies on the Indo-China border. The lake offers mesmerising views of the mountains, amazing bird watching opportunities, and a peaceful atmosphere to visitors. Indulge in the joys of camping and lakeside bonfires as you spend a night next to the massive lake. The lake changes from blue to green and even grey in colour throughout the day, promising a once-in-a-lifetime experience to travellers.
Located approximately 160 kilometres from Leh lies one of the most stunning landscapes of Ladakh, Nubra Valley. Renowned as a high-altitude cold desert, Nubra is a deep-cut gorge that offers magnificent views. Some attractions travellers must pay attention to include the iconic Diskit Monastery and Maitreyi Buddha, and the natural wonders of Hunder Sand Dunes, Yarab Tso, Turtuk and Panamik villages.
An escape from the bustle of city life awaits at Tso Moriri, the underrated counterpart of Pangong Tso. A pristine high-altitude lake, Tso Moriri lies amidst snow-capped mountains as a hidden gem of Ladakh. Go for an offbeat adventure as you camp around the massive lake which changes colours according to the time of the day and spot exotic birds found only in this region.
A geographical wonder awaits you at Magnetic Hill, a mysterious attraction where gravity seems to disappear. Vehicles get pulled upwards at this immensely popular location, a phenomenon that continues to baffle scientists. Feel the magic of nature come alive as you soak in the stunning views of the Himalayas and enjoy a gravity-defying experience at the Magnetic Hill.
The nine-storey ancient royal residence dates back to the seventeenth century and today stands as a museum showcasing mediaeval Tibetan architecture, old paintings and royal jewellery collections. Discover Ladakh's lesser-known history by visiting the Royal Leh Palace, where you can marvel at its architectural heritage and fascinating artefacts. From the Palace's elevated position, enjoy unparalleled views of Leh, providing a unique and unforgettable perspective of the region.
A salt lake located high up in the Himalayas, Tso Kar is renowned as one of India’s most prominent wetlands which attract numerous rare bird and animal species like the Black-Necked Crane and Tibetan Gazelle. Ever-changing in size and depth, the lake offers picturesque views of the mountains and is an important salt collection site for locals.
The last stop en route Leh on the Srinagar-Leh Highway, Lamayuru Monastery is renowned as Ladakh’s oldest monastery. Soak in the peaceful ambience of the iconic structure as you admire the panoramic views of Ladakh’s mountains and beautiful lakes. With a massive collection of wall paintings, murals, scriptures, statues and much more, Lamayuru is a unique cultural wonder that is a must-visit for all tourists.
Soak in the spiritual serenity of Ladakh’s oldest Buddhist Learning Centre as you head to the Alchi Monastery. For at least a thousand years, the monastery has housed numerous temples that serve as a reflection of the cultural transformations that have taken place over time. Witness the panoramic views of the mountains as you spot some of the oldest wall paintings of Ladakh in this monastery.
Once the summer residence of the Ladakh Royalty, the seventeenth-century Shey Monastery is popular among tourists for the gilded gold statue of Shakyamuni Buddha. The vantage location attracts adventurers with its four-kilometre-long trek and offers mesmerising views of nearby destinations like Matho, Thiksey, Stok and Leh.
Embark on a wild adventure into the largest national park of South Asia as you visit the Hemis National Park during your Ladakh trip from Delhi. Spot the elusive snow leopards in abundance as you traverse the dry forests filled with rare medicinal plants. Remember to visit popular Ladakh attractions like Hemis Monastery and Stok Kangri Peak located within the national park.
Ranked among the most important Buddhist monasteries in Ladakh, Namgyal Monastery dates back to the fifteenth century and is renowned for a three-storeyed gold statue of Maitreyi Buddha. Soak in the panoramic views of the Zanskar mountains and Indus River as you take a look at the rare collection of Buddhist scriptures.
Explore the diverse blend of Ladakhi cultural traditions at Spituk Gompa, known as one of Ladakh’s oldest religious establishments. Prepare to be amazed by the impeccably maintained murals, statues, and paintings of Buddha and Bodhisattvas. Travellers can also witness a massive statue of Goddess Kali in the Gompa. If you visit in the festive season, the lively Spituk Gastor festival full of dances and rituals can be experienced.
Muddy green meets pristine blue at Sangam Point, the picturesque confluence of the Indus and Zanskar Rivers. Experience the exhilaration of river rafting while taking in the stunning sight of two rivers merging amidst snow-capped rugged mountains. Located approximately 48 kilometres from Leh, Sangam Point is a must-visit for every traveller in Ladakh.
Renowned as one of the highly revered religious sites in Ladakh, Gurudwara Pathar Sahib dates back to the sixteenth century and is visited by tourists of all faiths. Believed to have been built at a spot where Guru Nanak defeated a demon, the Gurudwara offers stunning views of the Himalayas and deep valleys. The delicious ‘langar’ offered here is a must-try on your Ladakh trip from Delhi.
Located on the Leh-Kargil Road is a unique museum, The Hall of Fame, which was constructed by the Indian Army in remembrance of the brave martyrs. Explore unseen photographs and biographies of Indian soldiers, seized arms and weapons of enemy armies, and watch documentaries on the Kargil War at a special section in the museum. Visitors can also purchase postcards and other souvenirs from the local shop.
Visit the largest Tibetan monastery of Ladakh, which encompasses several stupas, statues, and numerous Buddhist artefacts. Explore the magnificent architecture of the twelve-storey structure and spot the iconic statue of the Maitreya Buddha from here. And if you visit during the festive season, be prepared for an amazing cultural extravaganza at the Gustor festival.
A tour of Ladakh’s monasteries is incomplete without a visit to the Diskit Monastery, the largest and oldest Buddhist structure in the Nubra Valley. Soak in the mesmerising views of the mountains and Leh town from the hilltop monastery and click memorable pictures. You can also learn about the colourful local traditions as you spot the huge drums, ornate statues of guardian deities, beautiful frescoes, and rare Buddhist texts at the Diskit Monastery.
The most stunning man-made portion of the Hemis National Park is the iconic Hemis Monastery. Located approximately 45 kilometres from Leh, the monastery attracts visitors with its splendid architecture and peaceful ambience. Tourists also visit the seventeenth-century monastery during the annual Hemis Festival to witness a unique cultural extravaganza filled with traditional Buddhist music, dance and prayer rituals.
The distance between Ladakh and Delhi is approximately 995 kilometres by road. It takes around 22 hours to reach Ladakh from Delhi by car, and alternatively, takes around 1 to 2 hours via flight.
The cheapest way to get from Delhi to Leh is to take the train to Jammu Tawi, then fly to Leh Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport, which takes about 22 hours. The quickest way from New Delhi to Leh, however, is to fly to Leh Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport, which takes about 1 hour 15 minutes.
Yes, the road from Srinagar to Leh via the Zoji La Pass and the Kargil route is generally regarded as safe. However, the road passes through some remote and mountainous terrain, which can be challenging for inexperienced drivers.
Consider packing warm clothes, a first aid kit, insurance, water bottles, a power bank, chargers, energy bars, snacks, and a portable oxygen cylinder while travelling from Srinagar to Leh.
The permits required for the Srinagar to Leh road trip are:
Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC): This permit is essential for Indian nationals and can be obtained in-person from the LAHDC offices in Leh, Kargil, and Jammu.
The Protected Area Permit (PAP): The permit is required for foreign nationals and can be obtained through the Indian Ministry of Home Affairs website or in-person from the Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Leh.
The Inner Line Permit (ILP): It is required for non-residents of Ladakh to enter certain restricted areas and can be obtained online through the Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) website.
The cost of flights is estimated between INR 4,000 to INR 15,000 depending on the airline and is also the quickest way to reach Leh as it only takes 1 hour 15 minutes.
The best route to reach Leh from Delhi is via the Manali-Leh highway and the journey takes approximately 2 days by car with stopovers at places like Manali, Keylong, Jispa, Sarchu and Pang. Another option is to fly from Delhi to Leh, which takes around 1.5 hours and there are several airlines that operate daily flights.
Some medical facilities available on the Delhi to Leh Ladakh route are the Military Hospital, Sonam Norbu Memorial Hospital and a few private clinics. However, it is advisable to carry a first aid kit with you during the trip.
There are petrol pumps available in major towns along the Delhi to Leh Ladakh route, such as Ambala, Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Srinagar however it is recommended to carry spare fuel. Also, there are many roadside dhabas and restaurants along the route, which serve local food as well as some Indian and Chinese cuisine.