Upon arrival at the airport, we will pick you up and transfer you to your hotel in the heart of New Delhi. Your room will be available starting at 12pm, and the night is yours to spend as you please.
Delhi to Manali
The morning of your second day is free for you to explore New Delhi a little more. Then, at 3pm, we will have a group meeting with all of the members of this Leh Ladakh road trip. Following our group meeting, we will transport you to the bus station. There you will take a night bus to Manali departing at 6pm. The bus is plenty comfortable, even for sleeping, but the trip will be long – 17 to 19 hours total.
60 Km - 2h of riding
You will have an early morning arrival in Manali, but then you will have most of the day to explore or relax. Then, finally…you get to ride! We will get warmed up for this Leh Ladakh bike trip with a 60 kilometre ride through the Kullu Valley. This will include a visit to the Manali fort and temple, both of which were built in the 10th century! On our way back to town we will pass through several rustic villages, and have plenty of gorgeous views. Then it will be time for a good night’s rest back at your hotel.
The Kullu Valley is rich with history, and was formerly known as “Kulanthapitha,” which translates to “the end of the livable world.” It was believed that deities lived amongst the mortals here, and it is renowned for its gardens, orchids, and natural beauty. Even the hashish grown here is famous. Today, the Kullu Valley is known as the “Land of the Gods,” as the valley is dotted with numerous temples.
Manali - Jispa
190 km – 8h of riding
Today is the day we begin the greatest of Himalayan motorcycle tours! Yesterday was only a small taste of what is to come; today you will begin to experience the sensation of the twists and turns of the mountain roads in this beautiful landscape.
We will begin the 170 kilometres journey as we ascend the Kullu Valley on endless switchbacks. Eventually we will reach Rohtang La, the mountain pass with an elevation of 3980 metres, where we leave the Indian subcontinent behind and enter the divine Buddhist world. From Rohtang La we will travel down a spectacular slope to Lahaul, a unique crossroads of Buddhism and Hinduism. Finally, we will cross the Pattan Valley before reaching the impressive Chandra Valley. Here you will have the opportunity to visit the Triloknath temples, before bedding down for the night at a guest house.
Jispa – Sarchu
90 km – 6h of riding
This 90 kilometres of our Leh Ladakh bike trip will take us back to the main valley, and then north, to view some breathtaking gorges. We will visit several old monasteries, locally known as “Gompas”. Then we go on to discover barren, almost unpopulated, landscapes. Finally, the road leads upwards in the direction of the Baracha La pass (4890m), before entering a desolate valley. We’ll spend the night camping in the mountainous pastures of Sarchu.
Sarchu – Rumtse
180 km – 7h of riding
This leg of your Leh Ladakh road trip will be one of the longest, covering 180 kilometres. You will go up into the mountains, gaining altitude as you approach Lachung La (elevation of 5065m) before plunging through deep and impressive gorges, and on into the desert of the Pang Moore Plains. We then head towards the Tanglang La pass (5330m), the world’s second highest motorable pass. We’ll come across a few villages as we approach the Indus valley, and then we quickly descend towards our day’s destination, Rumtse, the first Ladakhi village. We’ll spend another night camping, this time in the surroundings of the village, in a meadow surrounded by fields of barley.
Rumtse – Leh
80 km – 3h of riding
Today will be a shorter journey, with more sightseeing opportunities. This stretch of our Leh Ladakh road trip winds along an impressive gorge before flowing into the Indus Valley. We will follow the Indus for about 50 kilometres and finally reach Leh, the capital of Ladakh. On the way, we will visit the famous Hemis monastery, which is the largest monastery of Ladakh, and Tiksi. It is built on top of a rocky peak overlooking the village. Finally, we’ll spend the afternoon in Leh, and lodge in a guest house for the evening.
Dominated by the majestic royal palace, Leh was a rich commercial centre. Traders with their caravans from Tibet and central Asia stopped there, before continuing their journey to Kashmir. The bazaar in the old district is abuzz with beautiful women with rosy, high cheekbones dressed in black robes, tied at the waist with bright pastel belts, old gentry with wrinkled skin like withered apples, lovely children, farmers from the Nubra valley, Tibetan and Kashmiri traders, and even monks from Zanskar. It truly is a lively and colourful world.
Leh - Khardung Lah
80 km – 4h30 of riding
Another short ride awaits us today, but it will not be easy, nor quick! We will ascend to the Khardung La pass on another labyrinthine route. The Khardung La is the highest motorable pass of the world at 5600 metres! From here, the panorama of the Zanskar range to the south, and the great Karakoram range to the north, is absolutely magical. Then we’ll retrace our routes to go back to Leh. The day is not over yet though, we’ll embark on a journey for the true and adventurous rider; the incomparable visit to Stock village, which is located on the other side of the Indus, at the bottom of the Stock Kangri at a height of more than 6000 metres! After the day’s journey, we’ll spend the night in a guest house.
Leh - Tso Moriri Lake
210 km – 8h of riding
Today will tie for the longest distance of this Leh Ladakh road trip. We begin with a ride up the Indus valley towards the Tibetan border. After Upshi, we continue along the Indus to the bridge of Mahe, often crossing gorges along the way. For lunch, we’ll enjoy a picnic on the white sand “beaches” of the Indus bank. We then leave the valley to enter the heart of Rupshu, the most isolated part of Ladakh. Taking a sandy track, we reach the famous Tso Moriri Lake, gleaming in its turquoise glory. After making this 210 kilometre trek, we’ll spend the night camping on the shores of the sacred lake.
The Indian half of the huge Tibetan plateau that extends from east to west over more than 2000 kilometres is known as Rupshu (or Changtang). The average altitude of the Rupshu is 4500 metres, too high for regular life. Only nomads live here, with their yaks and goats.
Tso Moriri Lake - Tso Kar Lake
100 km – 4h of riding
This leg of the Leh Ladakh bike trip covers 100 kilometres and includes more sightseeing, as well as some immersion into the life of the Champa nomads. Along our ride, we will make a visit to Korzok village, one of the rare settlements of Rupshu, and its small monastery. Then you can enjoy a ride or walk along the lake. Next, we’ll make our departure in the direction of Tso Kar on a sandy and rocky track. The Tso Kar is a salt water lake surrounded by unbelievable lunar scenery. We’ll spend another night camping, this time next to the Thukje village.
The Champas (nomads) live under their waterproof black tents made of yak wool. They live on their yaks, goats and sheep and mostly earn their living by selling their wool. They go down to the valleys to trade for cereals, materials, spices, sugar. In exchange, they bring back salt, butter, cheese, meat, and other daily necessities. They raise sheep, and the world famous wool from their goats, which is known as pashmina. The wool is then brought down to the Kashmir valley, where it is woven, and then sold all across the world.
Lac Tso Kar – Jispa
210 km – 8h of riding
Another long ride of 210 kilometres will take us back towards Jispa. We begin this part of our Leh Ladakh road trip with a rugged, but safe, track to reach the Leh-Manali road, next to Pang. We then head southward until Sarchu, where we will break for lunch. During the afternoon, we will drive down to Drache or even Jispa, before overnighting in a simple Guest House. While it may be simple, it still resides at 3500m altitude, where a hard bed and a shower are items of luxury!
This region is the refuge for many animal species that we can see while trekking: wild hares, marmots with thick fur, white partridges, ibex, wild donkeys from Tibet (known as Kyangs), wolves, and if we are lucky, some very rare snow leopards.
Jispa – Naggar
190 km – 8h of riding
By now, you realize this Leh Ladakh bike trip is the greatest of Himalayan motorcycle tours. So, savor the last 170 kilometres of the trip as we make our way back to Manali. We’ll make an early departure southward to Manali before spending the night at the hotel. Your road today will be easier, so take the opportunity to enjoy a little more speed, each curve, and each new landscape. These final mountain roads will offer you some of the best moments on your motorcycle !
Naggar – Delhi
You will have the opportunity to spend this day exploring Manali. In the evening, you’ll catch a comfortable overnight bus back to Delhi.
Today begins with an early morning arrival in Delhi. You’ll then be transferred to the hotel. Feel free to spend the rest of the day exploring Delhi.
Delhi is the capital of India. It was founded on the site of seven historical cities, and is now composed of the old town and the new – two halves of an exciting and chaotic unit. The fortified citadel and the Red Fort remind one of the strength and elegance of the great Mughal Empire. The lively Chandni Chowk, known for its dealers in gold and silver, the Jama Masjid mosque, the largest in India, and the Raj Ghat, where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated, are truly captivating. New Delhi is a vibrant city, with multi-storied buildings, boulevards, fountains and large parks. You can visit the minaret of Qutub Minar, the mausoleum of Humayun, and Connaught Place, where the mix of vendors, displays of silk, cinemas, and restaurants perfectly reflects the essence of the national capital.
Today is another free day in Delhi, and your hotel room is yours until 10 am. At this point, we’ll unfortunately have to say goodbye, but not before transferring you to the airport, on schedule with your flight departure time.