ZANSKAR VALLEY: An Adventure Awaits in this Picturesque Valley.
Mountains of Zanskar towering over Padum
Maximum altitude: 7,756 metres (25,446 ft)
Height 2,825 metres (9,268 ft)
Location: 33°29′N 76°50′E
Dimensions 400 miles in length (640 km)
Highlights of THE ZANSKAR VALLEY
Adventure seekers can take on difficult treks like the Lugnak Trail Trek, Padum-Darcha Trek, and Zanskar-Sham Valley Trek in Zanskar thanks to its dangerous terrain.
The Zanskar valley, which is 6,000 metres above sea level on average, is encircled by the breath-taking splendour of the tranquil mountains.
In the winter, the Zanskar River freezes to create a thick layer of ice, allowing adventurers to travel on a trek, also known as the "Chadar" trek, along this ice river.
White water rafting and night-time camping next to stunning mountains are both available at the Zanskar River.
OVERVIEW OF ZANSKAR VALLEY:
Zanskar, Ladakh's undiscovered jewel
Zanskar Valley is a semi-arid valley tucked in the lap of the northern Himalayas at a comfortable elevation of 13154 feet. The pure waterways, surrounding snow-capped mountains, and picturesque environment of Zanskar serve as a major tourist lure. This area, which is about 105 kilometres from Leh, is popular for adventure sports like water rafting, trekking, and paragliding. This area is dotted with ancient monasteries, making it a favourite among those who enjoy monasteries. Travelers should schedule their trip to Zanskar between June and September because the valley will still be completely covered in snow during the winter months when temperatures might drop to -30 degrees Celsius.
The Kargil district in the Indian union territory of Ladakh has the tehsil of Zanskar, also known as Zahar (locally) or Zangskar. Padum serves as the administrative centre (former capital of Zanskar). Zanskar and the nearby Ladakh region were both temporarily a part of the Guge dynasty in Western Tibet. On NH301, Zanskar is located 250 kilometres south of Kargil.
The Zanskar Range is a mountain range that divides the Zanskar valley from the Indus valley near Leh in the union territory of Ladakh. Geologically speaking, the Zanskar Range is a component of the Tethys Himalaya, a synclinorium with a width of around 100 km that was created by weakly metamorphosed sedimentary strata that were heavily folded and imbricated. The Zanskar Range has an average elevation of 6,000 metres (19,700 ft). Rupshu is the name of its eastern region. About 20,000 people called the Zanskar home in 2020. There have been calls for Zanskar to become a district.
The majority of travellers schedule a 2- to 3-day trip to Zanskar Valley. Surprisingly, one can find accommodations all year long in this isolated part of the Himalayas.
The Zanskar valley is without a doubt one of the most isolated regions in the entire nation, but it has also historically been one of the most picturesque. In addition to their natural beauty, Zanskar's well-known sights are worthwhile excursions since they provide a variety ofadventurous sports are common with tourists. Around Zanskar, there are a lot of amazing locations to visit. Plan your vacation right away if you wish to discover the untainted beauty of nature in India's stunning Zanskar region. Have fun exploring the Indian Himalayas! And be sure to visit this amazing Indian wonderland.
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Etymology of ZANSKAR VALLEY
Zanskar (zangs dkar) is primarily referred to as "Zangskar" in scholarly research. Although the Zanskari pronunciation is Zhar, social sciences (anthropology, gender studies), which mirror the Ladakhi pronunciation. Older geographical descriptions and maps may spell the word "Zaskar" another way. According to an etymology analysis of the name (Snellgrove and Skorupsky, 1980), it may have its roots in the naturally occurring copper in this area, known in Tibetan as "Zangs.
" However, the second syllable—which can mean "Zangs-dkar" (white copper), "Zangs-mkhar" (copper palace), or "Zangs-skar"—seems to be more difficult (copper star). Others believe that it originates from the words zan, which means copper, and skar, which means valley. Due to the abundance of the basic food crops in an otherwise very arid environment, John Crook (1994) speculates that the name "Zan-mKhar" (Food Palace) may have also been the original meaning region. In Tibetan script, the name is typically spelled zangs-dkar.
It was originally "bzang-dkar," which means nice (or lovely) and white, according to several religious academics in the area who were also referenced by Snellgrove and Skorupsky (1980) and Crook (1994). "White" would speak to the Zanskaris' simplicity, goodness, and religious tendencies; "good" would refer to the Padum plain's triangular shape, the triangle serving as a symbol of Dharma and religion. Therefore, even though "Zangskar" would be the more appropriate spelling etymologically, "Zanskar" is unquestionably the word that is most commonly used for this region.
History OF ZANSKAR
The first indications of human activity in Zanskar appear to date back to the bronze era. According to petroglyphs from that time period, the people who made them were hunters who lived between Kazakhstan and China on the central Asian steppes. An Indo-European community known as the Mon is thought to have previously resided in this area before blending with or being displaced by the Dards, the next group to settle here.
Zanskar may have experienced the transmission of early Buddhism from Kashmir as early as 200 BC. The Kushan era is when the earliest monuments were built. Following this spread of Buddhism to the east, the Tibetans invaded Zanskar and a sizable portion of the Western Himalaya in the 7th century and imposed their then-animistic Bön faith.
When Tibet was also converted to this religion in the eighth century, Buddhism regained dominance over Zanskar. Two Royal Houses were established in Zanskar between the tenth and eleventh centuries, and the monasteries of Karsha and Phugtal (shown) were also constructed. Zanskar was a more or less independent Buddhist kingdom that was ruled by two to four related royal families up until the 15th century.
Zanskar has been ruled by Ladakh from the fifteenth century, sharing both its success and failure. Invading Zanskar in 1822, a coalition of the Kulu, Lahoul, and Kinnaur pillaged the nation and destroyed the royal palace at Padum.
Due to border disputes between India, Pakistan, and China in the middle of the 20th century, Ladakh and Zanskar were off-limits to visitors. Two-thirds of Ladakh's original area was lost during these wars, with Baltistan going to Pakistan and Aksai Chin going to China.
Despite a turbulent history of internal conflicts and foreign invasions, Ladakh and Zanskar have maintained their religious and cultural traditions since the eighth century.
This is also one of the few areas in the Himalaya where traditional Tibetan culture, society, and buildings survived the Chinese Cultural Revolution because of its commitment to the Indian Union. The traditional social structure of Zanskar has undergone numerous changes over the past twenty years as a result of the opening of a road and the tremendous influx of tourists and scholars.
Geography of ZANSKAR
The Zanskar Range spans a sizable area, starting at the southeastern limits of the state of Kashmir and extending northwest to the eastern limits of Baltistan. It divides Ladakh from the Chenab River and the valleys of Kashmir. In other words, it acts as a border between Kashmir's Ladakh area and the other two parts of the state, i.e. Jammu area and Kashmir Valley. Within this range is the peak Nunkun, which is 23,000 feet (7,000 metres) high.
In addition to the numerous other passes that link Ladakh and Kashmir, this region is home to the 13,000-foot-high (4,000-metre) Zojila Pass, which is located in the far northwest of the Zanskar Range. In actuality, this mountain range is an offshoot of the vast Himalayan mountain range.
Numerous rivers that originate in various branches of this range run north and then join the enormous Indus River. These rivers include the Suru River (Indus), the Hanle River, the Khurna River, the Zanskar River, and the Shingo River. Additionally, it divides Kinnaur and Spiti in Himachal.Pradesh. The Zanskar range contains the tallest mountains in Himachal.
Topography OF ZANSKAR
Around 7,000 square kilometres (2,700 sq mi) of Zanskar are located at a height of 3,500 to 7,135 metres (11,500–23,409 feet). It consists of the territory situated along the Zanskar River's two principal forks. The Doda River is the first, and it originates close to Pensi La, a mountain pass that rises to a height of 4,400 metres (14,400 feet). From there, it flows south-east along the main valley towards Padum, the capital of Zanskar.
The Kargyag River (also known as Kurgiakh River), which has its source close to the Shingo La 5,091 metres (16,703 ft), and the Tsarap River, which has its source close to the Baralacha-La, combine to produce the second branch.
The Doda and Lingti-kargyag valleys, which stretch from north to south-east, are surrounded by high mountain peaks on all sides. The Great Himalayan Range, which is to the south-west, divides Zanskar from the Kisthwar and Chamba basins. The Zanskar Range, which separates Zanskar from Ladakh to the northeast, is located there.
Thus, the Zanskar river, which carves the deep and remote terrain of Zanskar, serves as the system's sole outlet.Through the Zanskar mountains is the narrow Zanskar Gorge.
The Karcha (Suru) River to the upper Karnali River are separated by the Zanskar range, which is 640 kilometres (400 km) long. The highest point in the range is Kamet Peak, 7,756 metres (25,446 ft) above sea level.
This topography explains why it is challenging to access Zanskar from all directions. Through mountain routes or, when the Zanskar river is frozen, along its frozen banks, communication with other Himalayan regions is maintained. The simplest route from Kargil crosses the Penzi-La and on through the Suru valley.
The lone road in Zanskar was constructed along this track in 1979 to link Padum with the major route from Srinagar into Ladakh.
Climate OF ZANSKAR
Zanskar is a high-altitude semi-desert region that is located on the Himalayan Range's northern edge. Ladakh and Zanskar are shielded from the majority of the monsoon by this mountain range, which creates a lovely summer temperature that is dry and warm. Although there isn't much precipitation during this time, there has been an increase in recent decades. Several water-powered mills were constructed.
During previous droughts, these locations were far from the villages, but they have since been abandoned as running water is now more readily available nearby. Although otherwise solidly constructed, Zanskari homes are not suited to the recent increase in rainfall since their roofs leak, surprising their unprepared occupants. During the bitter and protracted winter, the majority of precipitation falls as snow. Since they feed the glaciers that melt in the summer and provide the majority of the irrigation water, these winter snowfalls are crucial. The Zanskar Valley is home to some of the world's coldest continuously inhabited regions.
FLORA AND FAUNA OF ZANSKAR
The communities with irrigation systems and the higher slopes, which receive more rainfall, are where the majority of Zanskar's vegetation may be found. The meadows dotted with thousands of edelweiss are the most stunning. Blue poppies grow at the foot of the Gumburanjon mountain. Farmers cultivate crops in the lower altitudes, such as potatoes, lentils, and barley. The region is home to domesticated animals such the yak, dzo, sheep, horse, and dog.
The marmot, bear, wolf, snow leopard, bharal, alpine ibex, grey goral, and lammergeier are some of the animals that can be found in Zanskar.
RELIGION OF ZANSKAR
The majority of people in Zanskar are Buddhist.
Nearly every community has a local monastery, which frequently houses historic wall murals and other artefacts. The Drugpa, which includes Sani Monastery, Dzongkhul, Stagrimo, and Bardan Monastery and is loosely associated with Stakna in the Indus valley, is one of the two main branches of Tibetan Buddhism present here.
Rangdum Monastery, Karsha, Stongde, and Phugtal Monastery are all under the jurisdiction of the Gelugpa and are devoted to the Ngari Rinpoche,whose primary residence is Likir Monastery in Ladakh.
LANGUAGES SPOKEN IN ZANSKAR
People in Zanskar speak the Ladakhi-Balti language of Zanskari. The Tibetan script is used for the writing. Standard Tibetan may be familiar to monks who have studied outside of Zanskar. English is a subject that all educated individuals in Zanskar must take because it is required in Indian schools.
PLACES TO VISIT IN ZANSKAR
The picturesque environment of Zanskar is made up of rivers, monasteries, and snow-capped mountains. You shouldn't skip seeing the Sani Monastery, Lingshed Monastery, Stongdey Monastery, Phuktal Monastery, and other monasteries since it is home to countless monasteries.
The Pensi La Pass, which separates Suru Valley from Zanskar Valley, can then be visited. The glaciers that line Pensi La Pass on all sides produce a beautiful spectacle that may be seen from May to September.
Unexpectedly, the secluded Zanskar Valley contains a lot of tourism attractions that drive visitors there. The journey to Zanskar Valley itself offers guests enough of excitement and thrill, so they may come and unwind during their stay and enjoy the peace and quiet of these places:
1. Sani Monastery:
In Zanskar's Stod Valley, next to the Sani town, sits the Sani monastery. You may walk there in about two hours and it is roughly 6 kilometres northwest of Padum. The Drukpa Kargyu school of Tibetan Buddhism is practised in the monastery, which is renowned for being the oldest gompa in Ladakh. The monastery houses a tiny temple honouring Yogi Naropa and is decorated with strange, vivid paintings that resemble sculptures.
There is one of the most important crematory fields outside the monastery of the Tibetan Buddhists, when a sizable boulder is put and painted with a brilliant image of Buddha. As you go about the monastery, the magnificent Sani Lake furthers the ambiance's allure and beauty.
The monastery additionally hosts Sani Naro-Nasjal, The Great Prayer Festival, and Nungnes each year. When the "Guru Naropa Flower" blooms in the first week of August, Sani Naro Nasjal is observed. The statue of Naropa is exposed the night before the festival, and lamas from the Bardan Monastery conduct ritual offerings in the form of masked dances. Although there is no set date for the Nungnes festival, it often occurs in July.
"The Great Prayer Festival" is the last.is held in the winter, when firewood from the village residents is used to execute the annual ritual reading of the Tibetan canon. You will have the opportunity to observe the fusion of several Central Asian civilizations that give the Zanskar Valley its life.
2.Suru Valley: A stop on your way from Kargil to RangdumThrough the Suru Valley, one can reach the Zanskar Valley. This valley, in contrast to Zanskar, is in full bloom with rich flora that can effectively draw attention. Sadly, the valley receives little attention because the majority of people simply pass through the area. Expeditions to the mountains and rafting activities both depart from the Suru Valley.
It may be seen on the way to Zanskar and is located around 139 kilometres from Padum. Mountain climbers are highly drawn to the uncharted Suru valley because it has so much to offer tourists and trekkers. It begins in Kargil and continues all the way to the Penzi La glacier (origin of Suru river).
The lower portion of the valley is fairly fertile and utilised for agriculture because it is situated along the banks of the Suru river purposes. Small settlements dot the scenic valley, which provides breath taking vistas and viewing opportunities. In Suru Valley, there are several places to have a picnic, including Sangra Parkachik, Umba, and Damsna.
3. Shafat Glacier: If you are familiar with the peaks Nun and Kun, you are aware that this glacier is where they get their names. This is where most people begin while getting ready to go on a climbing excursion in these mountains. This glacier gives rise to a well-known stream that bears the name Shafat Nala and contributes water to the Suru River.
4.Doda River: Likewise this 79 km long river, often known as the "Stod River," is the lifeblood of Zanskar's famed Stod valley. People joyfully swarm to the river's edge to engage in water sports like swimming and rafting.
This walk, also known as the Chadar trek, is one of its type and may be found all over the world. The phrase has a blanket-like meaning, which is reminiscent of the ice that covers the Zanskar river during the bitter winters. This hike involves crossing across the Zanskar River, which the villagers frequently use for trading.
If you want to take on this adventure, you should come here in January or February when the ice sheet is at its thickest. At the municipal hospital in Leh, you must pass a medical fitness test.You cannot make this walk without it.
6.PENZI LA PASS: Penzi La pass, located 160 kilometres from Kargil and at an elevation of 4,401 to 4,450 metres, the highest point on the Kargil-Zanskar route, include two tiny, turquoise, high-altitude lakes with camping areas and views of the surrounding permafrost mountains. Unlike the Zojila, this pass is more of a table land with a lot of open areas and sights to see, such the Drang-Drung. Behind the mountains to the right is Kishtwar.
Due to the blockade of the Penzi La, Zanskar is still locked off from the outside world for more than eight months out of the year. Additionally, there is no air service. As one of the few remaining cultural settlers of Tibet, Zanskar is currently one of the least altered microcosms of Ladakh. Simply said, systems like polyandry still exist in some parts of Zanskar despite being more or less defunct in Leh town and the more developed villages of Leh district.
7.KASRSHA GOMPA: The largest monastery complex in Zanskar is located at Karsha Gompa, which is 9 kilometres from Padum. The impressive collection of white-washed buildings may be observed from Padum. A total of 150 monks, eight temples, two assembly halls, priceless icons, antiquities, scrolls, and thankas are all housed in this compound. The monastery was established in the fourteenth century.
The gompa, which consists of 30 structures, was constructed along a mountainside. It was established by Phagspa Shesrab (translator) and is referred to as "Karsha Chamspaling." The monastery contains magnificent paintings and is credited to Guru Padmasambhava.
Dorje Rinchen's bone relics are housed in old rock engravings. The younger brother of the 14th Dalai Lama is in charge of several shrines that are located inside the monastery. A cloth artwork of Buddha surrounded by his tutelary gods that has been meticulously stitched in multicoloured threads is unveiled by the monks' lamas. The chorten, which houses the mummified body of the incarnate lama known as Rinchen Zangpo inside a casket with a silver lining, is the most significant aspect of the gompa.
The "Gustor festival," which takes place in the monastery's grounds every January, features religious masked cham dances performed by the local monks.
8.STONGDE MONASTERY: Stongde Monastery is located 18 kilometres from Padum, built atop a hill overlooking the village. This monastery is linked to the well-known Tibetan Yogi Marpa, also known as Marpa Ling, who is supposed to have founded it.
It belongs to the Gelugpa order of Tibetan Buddhism and was constructed in the 11th century by a student of Naropa. The second-largest monastic institution in the Zanskar valley, the monastery is home to 60 Gelugpa monks. It is made up of seven temples with ornaments.complex paintings with gold borders.
The "Gustor Festival" is held annually at the Stongdey monastery on the 28th and 29th of the eleventh Tibetan month.
9.BURDAN MONASTERY: Burdan Monastery is a remote monastery located atop a rock rising abruptly from the Lungnak valley, 12 kilometres from Padum. Among the Zanskar Drogpa order monasteries, the monastery is well-known. Deba Gyatso founded it around the beginning of the 17th century. But it is renowned for being Lama Barapa's residence.
10.PHUTGAL GOMPA: Phugtal Gompa is one of Zanskar's outstanding cave monasteries and is charmingly located in the Lungnak valley. By the second half of the eleventh century, Phagspa Sherab Zangpo had founded it.
The "Cave monastery," also referred to as the Phuktal monastery, is situated in the Zanskar region's Lungnak valley. The monastery's honeycomb-like construction surrounding a cave adds to its allure. It was founded in the 15th century by Jangsem Sherap Zangpo and belongs to the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism. In order to facilitate meditation in a serene environment, the monastery is located in a distant area. One of the few monasteries in Zanskar that can only be accessed on foot is this one.
The supplies are transported on donkeys and horses in the summer and through the frozen Zanskar River in the winter. The monastery has also established a traditional Tibetan clinic and a monastic school for the neighbourhood, which prepare and disperse natural medication to the populace.
Starting in February, a number of festivities are held in the Phuktal monastery. The dates of the festivals change every year since they are observed in accordance with the lunisolar Tibetan calendar.
Some of the events celebrated in the Zanskar valley's Phuktal monastery are listed below:
Jigched Lhachusum Ceremony
Initiation of Vajrabhairava
Phukta Gutor and
11.ZANGKUL GOMPA:Famous Indian yogi Naropa's meditation resort is called Zangkul Gompa (10th century AD) Zankul is a waterfall on the Padum-Kishtiwar trek that is located in a side valley close to the settlement of Ating.
The Stod Valley, which also leads to the Umasi La Pass, and the Dzongkhul monastery are both located in Zanskar. Naropa, a well-known Buddhist monk and yogi, is credited with laying the foundation for the monastery, which is a part of the Drukpa school of Tibetan Buddhism. He is reputed to have meditated in one of the monastery's two caves, around which the entire complex is built. His footprints are also visible in the rock near the lower cave's entrance. It also has murals on the cave walls, some of which are about 300 years old, and thankas from well-known Drukpa Lamas. On the 16th and 17th of the fourth Tibetan month, the Dzongkhul gompa conducts the "Zongkhul Huchot" celebration; unlike the festivities of the Sani monastery, there are no masked dance performances.
12.Palace of Zangla
In the Zangla town of the Zanskar Valley is where you may find the Zangla palace. It is roughly 32 kilometres from Padum's centre. A 10-minute hike will get you to the palace, which is perched on a hill. A minor entry fee is demanded at the palace atthe door, and the money raised goes toward remodelling the palace. Due to historical omissions, the palace is occasionally referred to as a monastery. This is most likely because the palace contains a shrine and is home to monks. In the Zangla village, you can also find a little Buddhist nunnery where you may enjoy some delectable momos and a cup of tea.
13.Confluence of the Indus and Zanskar Rivers at Sangam Point
The Indus Zanskar is located on the route between Leh and Zanskar. Sangam Point, one of the popular tourist destinations in Ladakh. You can see the Indus River's vivid blue tint blending with the Zanskar River's green colour at the site of confluence. Additionally, it is supposed to change colour with the seasons, providing an altogether unique picture. You can also see the colourful surroundings and the snow-capped mountains in the distance from the two rivers. It is a Sangam Point must-see on your journey to Zanskar because you must not miss the divine sight of the confluence at any cost.
14.Monastery of Bardan
Twelve kilometres separate Padum from the Bardan monastery. The Drukpa Kargyud monastic order established the monastery in the 17th century. There are numerous tiny stupas there as well as a sizable assembly hall with magnificent Buddha images. A few historic murals and statues of numerous other Buddhist figures can be found in the prayer hall.
Activities TO DO in Zanskar
Zanskar is reachable in the winter and is most renowned for its unusual Chadar Trek or Frozen River Trek. In addition, Zanskar is renowned for its dangerous terrain for thrill-seekers, including theAmong the treks one can attempt are the Padum-Darcha Trek, the Lugnak Trail Trek, and the Zanskar-Sham Valley Trek. The best rafting in Ladakh can be found on the Zanskar River, and motorbiking is another thrilling activity you may partake in when visiting the Zanskar region.
One of the most distinctive and fascinating activities in the Zanskar Valley is trekking. The stunning Zanskar valley is encircled by steep mountains, freezing glaciers, and frozen rivers and is situated in the high Himalayan ranges. As a result, tourists can hike all year long. Lamayuru, Darcha-Padum, and Rangdum in Suru Valley are just a few of the numerous trekking locations in and around the Zanskar Valley.
If this is your first-time trekking, you can find it a little difficult and difficult, but with a dependable and experienced guide, you can enjoy the Zanskar Valley to the fullest. The famed Chadar Trek on the frozen Zanskar River in the winter is perfect delight for adventure seekers because India is the country with the most hiking routes. You can't wait to unravel the mysteries of the spectacular Zanskar Ranges as you journey through picturesque landscapes and verdant green meadows.
Zanskar offers river rafting opportunities in some of Ladakh's most distant and inaccessible areas, making it a true experience. It is the highest rafting site in the world and one of the hardest in India, located at a height of 12000 feet. It is one of Ladakh's most exhilarating adventure sports. Your journey to Ladakh will be one you'll never forget thanks to the snow-capped mountains and the inviting aroma that permeates the air as you raft through them.
There are three distances for rafting in the Zanskar River, depending on skill level. Those who are new to rafting and those who just want to have a little fun on the river typically try the first level, which is 6 km long. The second level, which is 14 km long, is the greatest difficulty, and most people favour it because the water has a large number of currents and rapids. The third level, which is 28 km long, is for experienced runners professionally, at this level calls for plenty of endurance. Due to the river's extremely intense rapids and curves, which have the potential to overturn the boat at any moment, the level of difficulty is very high.
Advice for travelling to Zanskar
Given how challenging it is to go to Zanskar Valley, one needs to make the necessary preparations in advance and keep in mind the following advice for a hassle-free journey.
You can easily find gas stations on the Srinagar-Kargil road, but once you pass that point, none can be found until Padum. Make sure to fill up your car in Kargil with the necessary fuel and to do it whenever you have the chance.
When visiting the Zanskar Valley, there is only one ATM at Padum market. Thus, you must have enough money on hand in case your car breaks down or you want to try something new so that you are not stranded.
There is a government hospital in both Kargil and Padum. Your mobile device could not have any connectivity at all as you cross Sankoo.
Ideal Season to Visit
Summer: From June to September is the ideal season to visit Zanskar Valley. For visitors to the valley, the weather is most agreeable at this time. Prior to June, the early season is characterised by poor roads that are unsuitable for travel.
After this, you can only schedule a trip up until October, which may present some challenges but is still doable.
Winter: If you intend to travel between the months of December through to January or February, the only way you can get to the valley is by taking the Chadar trek these days. Only if you are ready to put in that degree of physical effort should you choose this season.
Starting in October, snow begins to fall in Zanskar, and throughout the winter, the temperature drops to 0°C or even lower. Winter is the ideal season to visit Zanskar if you like snow or want to go on the renowned Chadar/Frozen River Trek.
Season of Summer in Zanskar
The temperature in Zanskar varies from -1°C to 15°C from March to June. Snow has buried the city, but by May, it has begun to melt.
Zanskar's Monsoon Season
The optimum season to visit Zanskar is generally said to be between July to September. Since Zanskar is located at a high altitude, the temperature fluctuates between 15 and 35 degrees hardly gets any rain during the monsoon season.
ESSENTIAL ITEMS TO CARRY ALONG
The following is a list of the essential items you must bring to the Zanskar Valley and not forget:
1. Dress appropriately. You must have the appropriate clothing for the season you are visiting in order to be comfortable.
(2) Drugs. As you continue to descend the path to the valley, there are fewer medications available.
3. Sun protection, as the risk of sunburn only grows with altitude.
5. Lights and a first-aid kit
6. Novelties and ready-to-eat foods
7. Pre-packaged water, maps, and directions
HOW TO ACCESS
This location is accessible by road, train, and air. If you choose to travel by air, you must get to Kushok Bakula Airport, which is the one closest to Leh. then take a taxi to Zanskar Valley from there. If you decide to take the train, you will take a taxi from the Jammu Tawi railway station to Leh and then to Zanskar Valley. Between Leh and Zanskar Valley, there is a distance of 462 kilometres, or around 11 hours, if one uses the NH 1 and NH 301. After arriving in Leh, you might choose to take a leased car through Kargil to get to Zanskar Valley.
Access the Kushok Bakula airport, which is the one nearest to Leh, by plane. After that, choose to travel to Zanskar Valley in a rental car.
Reach the Jammu Tawi train station by train.
and then book a car or take a taxi to Leh before continuing on to Zanskar Valley. Jammu's Tawi Railway Station is 720 kilometres away.
One must first go to Kargil, which may be reached through Srinagar or Leh, before proceeding to Zanskar Valley.
The best ways to get to Zanskar Valley
Through Kargil and Srinagar: The fastest way to go to the Zanskar Valley is by this path. You have two options for getting to Leh: either by flying or taking the train directly to Leh from Manali or from Leh to Kargil. You can travel to Padum via car from here. In terms of the shortest path, you can get there securely by taking Srinagar, Kargil, and Padum.
From Himachal: This route is currently being built and won't be finished for a few more years. It starts at Darcha inShingo La to Himachal, then on to Padum. A different road connects Leh with Nimoo, Chilling, and eventually Padum. This path follows the Zanskar River for the most part.
This 40-kilometer path from Darcha to Shingo La passes by the well-known Phugtal monastery, which can be explored while travelling there.
Via Leh: The Zanskar Valley is easily accessible via this road, which is open all year round. It will travel from Leh to Chilling before making its way to Padum. Most of the villagers are still unable to access the roads, but after this project is finished, they will have a better means of transportation. From Delhi to Ladakh, a bike journey is the ideal way to discover culture, adventure, and excitement.
1.How do you get to Zanskar Valley?
Flying to Leh and using a shared taxi from Leh to Kargil is the most typical way to get to Zanskar Valley. Take a taxi to Padum from the taxi stand in Kargil.
However, it is necessary to spend one night in Leh to the following day, early in the morning, travel to Kargil after properly acclimatising.
From Leh, it would take five to six hours to get to Kargil.
Plan a cab to Padum in Zanskar for the next day rather than leaving for Zanskar the same day you arrive in Kargil.
It's preferable to stay the night in Kargil because it takes a lot of effort to go from Kargil to Zanskar.
The following morning, depart from Kargil after breakfast to the Zanskar Valley.
2.What is the optimum season to visit Zanskar
The optimum season for tourists to visit Zanskar Valley is from June to September. Heavy snowfall during the winter closes the route to Zanskar Valley, which doesn't reopen until May.
The magnificent natural splendour of Zanskar would be at its peak from May to September with lovely vistas and towering snow-capped mountains.
June through September, peak season
The shoulder season is between April and November.
Season for the Chadar Trek: January and February
Zanskar is encircled by mountains and rivers, which complicates travel to the region.
In the months of December through April, the Zanskar Valley is still cut off from the rest of Ladakh.
The only way to reach Zanskar from the rest of Ladakh between December and April is by the Chadar trek route on the frozen Zanskar River.
The sole route that leads to Zanskar Valley by vehicle is the Kargil to Zanskar road, which is open from May to November.
Visitors are recommended to use this route when they travel to move carefully and be alert for rocks and other roadside debris.
In order to reach the Zanskar Valley, the UT Ladakh administration also offers helicopter services, but only for emergency and rescue purposes.
3.How to organise your itinerary for the Zanskar Valley?
Without a guide, creating an itinerary for a trip to Zanskar is difficult. To share our experiences with you, we created an itinerary with the help of our experts and organised a trip to the Zanskar Valley. It would be excellent if you read it to learn everything there is to know about the Zanskar Valley so you can simply arrange your itinerary.
You should adhere to a few key recommendations to make your trip more enjoyable.
It takes time to travel to Zanskar from Leh or Srinagar. You must therefore schedule a journey to the Zanskar valley that lasts at least three days and two nights.
Keep a report from RT-CPR that is older than 96 hours with you.
The route from Kargil to the Zanskar Valley is in very bad shape and does not have a well-established infrastructure. So make sure your car is in good shape and check the ground clearance.
Hire or share a taxi up to Kargil Town if you wish to go somewhere in one. In Kargil, take a night of rest. Take a different cab up to Padum from Kargil.
Having breakfast before leaving Kargil can help you breakfast on the way to Zanskar won't be possible.
Only take a taxi up to Kargil town; taxis from Leh or Srinagar aren't permitted to go further, to the Zanskar valley. Therefore, you must switch taxis in Kargil and rent another cab up to Zanskar through the Kargil Taxi Union.
Ask locals about the state of the road while you spend the night in Kargil because occasionally it can become blocked and you won't be able to travel. You can get in touch with us to find out the situation right now and the state of the roads leading to the Zanskar Valley.
Make a pit break at Panikhar on the way to Zanskar to tour the community.
The route to Zanskar travels through numerous isolated areas with cell phone service weak. BSNL post-paid SIMs receive stronger signals than other SIMs, therefore get one before travelling to Zanskar.
Bring extra petrol with you from Kargil.
If you are driving your own car or riding a bicycle, use Google offline maps.