scorecardLesser-known places to visit in Ladakh in 2024
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Lesser-known places to visit in Ladakh in 2024

Lesser-known places to visit in Ladakh in 2024
TravelTravel5 min read
Ladakh, often called "The Land of High Passes," is known for its stunning landscapes and rich culture. While many travellers flock to popular spots like Leh, Pangong Lake, and Nubra Valley, Ladakh has many lesser-known treasures that offer unique experiences away from the crowds. Here’s a guide to some of these hidden gems you should consider visiting in 2024.

Turtuk is a small village located near the India-Pakistan border. This picturesque village was opened to tourists only in 2010. It is famous for its apricot orchards and the Balti culture of its residents. Turtuk's stunning landscapes, with views of the Shyok River and lush green fields against a backdrop of rugged mountains, make it a perfect destination for those seeking tranquillity.

Uleytokpo is a serene village located about 60 kilometres west of Leh. It is an ideal place for those who love nature and meditation. The village offers beautiful views of the Indus River and surrounding mountains. Uleytokpo is also a good base for exploring nearby monasteries like Alchi and Likir, which are known for their ancient frescoes and unique architecture.

Hemis Shukpachan
Hemis Shukpachan is a quaint village nestled in the heart of the Sham Valley. The village is named after the Shukpa (Juniper) trees that are found in abundance here. Hemis Shukpachan is known for its beautiful landscapes, traditional Ladakhi homes, and the warm hospitality of its residents. It’s a great place for short hikes and experiencing local culture.

Suru Valley
Suru Valley is a lush, green valley located to the south of Kargil. The valley is fed by the Suru River and is surrounded by the majestic peaks of Nun Kun. It is one of the most fertile areas in Ladakh, with fields of wheat, barley, and various fruits. Suru Valley is perfect for those who love picturesque landscapes and outdoor activities like trekking and camping.
Read- 6 reasons why you should visit Ladakh this summer
Zanskar Valley
While Zanskar Valley is gaining popularity, it still remains less visited compared to other parts of Ladakh. The valley is known for its rugged beauty, ancient monasteries, and the thrilling Chadar Trek, which involves trekking on the frozen Zanskar River in winter. Zanskar’s remoteness makes it an ideal destination for adventure seekers and those looking to disconnect from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Hanle is a small village located near the India-China border, and it is home to the Hanle Observatory, one of the world's highest astronomical observatories. The village offers clear night skies, making it a paradise for stargazing. Hanle’s remote location and minimal light pollution provide an unmatched celestial experience.

Tso Moriri Lake
While Tso Moriri is more known than some other spots on this list, it is still less visited compared to Pangong Lake. Located in the Changthang region, Tso Moriri is a high-altitude lake that offers stunning views and a peaceful environment. The area around the lake is also a protected wetland reserve, home to various migratory birds.

Tips for Visiting Ladakh’s Lesser-Known Places
Altitude Sickness: Ladakh is at a high altitude, so acclimatise properly to avoid altitude sickness. Take it easy for the first couple of days and stay hydrated.
Travel Permits: Some areas in Ladakh, especially near the borders, require special permits for tourists. Make sure to check the latest requirements and obtain the necessary permits in advance.
Weather: The best time to visit Ladakh is between May and September when the weather is pleasant and most roads are open. Winter months can be extremely harsh.
Respect Local Culture: Ladakh has a rich cultural heritage. Respect local customs and traditions, dress modestly, and ask for permission before taking photos of people or religious sites.

Exploring these lesser-known places in Ladakh will give you a deeper appreciation of its natural beauty and cultural richness. Whether you're seeking adventure, peace, or a spiritual journey, Ladakh's hidden gems have something special to offer. Happy travels!

Frequently asked questions
1. What is the best time to visit the lesser-known places in Ladakh?
The best time to visit Ladakh, including its lesser-known spots, is from May to September. During these months, the weather is relatively warm, and the roads are accessible. The winter months (October to April) can be extremely cold, and many areas become inaccessible due to heavy snowfall.

2. Do I need special permits to visit these lesser-known places in Ladakh?
Yes, some areas in Ladakh, especially those near the borders (like Turtuk and Hanle), require Inner Line Permits (ILPs) for Indian citizens and Protected Area Permits (PAPs) for foreign tourists. These permits can be obtained from the Deputy Commissioner’s office in Leh or through registered travel agents.

3. How can I acclimatise to the high altitude in Ladakh?
To acclimatise to the high altitude in Ladakh, follow these tips:
Spend the first couple of days in Leh, which is at a lower altitude compared to other parts of Ladakh.
Avoid strenuous activities for the first 48 hours.
Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, but avoid alcohol and caffeine.
Consider taking medication like Diamox (after consulting a doctor) to help with acclimatisation.

4. What kind of accommodation is available in these lesser-known places?
Accommodation options in lesser-known places in Ladakh range from homestays and guesthouses to basic lodges and campsites. These accommodations offer a unique opportunity to experience local hospitality and culture. While facilities may be basic, they are usually clean and comfortable. It's a good idea to book in advance, especially during the peak tourist season.

5. Is it safe to travel to these remote areas in Ladakh?
Yes, it is generally safe to travel to remote areas in Ladakh. However, due to the rugged terrain and extreme weather conditions, it’s important to be well-prepared. Travel with a local guide or in a group, carry essential supplies (food, water, medical kit), and ensure your vehicle is in good condition. Always check the latest travel advisories and road conditions before embarking on your journey.

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