Zankar Trek Phirtse-La

Introduction

Possibly one of the most remote high altitude regions of the world is this Buddhist land of Zanskar where thundering rivers flow from glaciers at the foot of towering mighty snow covered mountains and passes. From the over 7,000 meter high Mount Nun and Mount Kun to the lesser peaks along the passes is this high altitude cold desert with small, picturesque villages settled along the perennial snow fed streams. Living with their livestock and garnering their single crop before their land freezes into the winter frost of minus 40 degrees celsius, these simple, warm, smiling and friendly people lead one of the toughest lives on the planet.

With spectacular monasteries like the Karsha Gompa and the breathtaking beauty of the Phuktal Gompa hanging on the lip of a high cave, one can see some of the most beautiful and colourful Buddhist art here. The passes of Stongdey la and Fritzi La are a lovely climb with beautiful views of the surrounding valleys and mountain ranges. The meadows are dotted with shepherds grazing their sheep and goats while, the passes are covered with fluttering colourful prayer flags that pass in the flowing winds the holy prayers of "Om Mani Padme Hum" or, "Hail the Jewel in the Lotus Flower - Lord Buddha".

Tour Highlights

  • Experience the spectacular Zanskar valley with beautiful monastery of Rangdun, Kursha & Phugtal
  • Spectacular views of Mt Nun & Mt Kun
  • Trek across the passes of Tongsdey & Pensi La
  • Experience the Indus river valley in leh and its beautiful monasteries

Destinations Covered

Delhi

Delhi

The City of Glory

Delhi is said to be one of the oldest existing cities in the world, along with Jerusalem and Varanasi. It is the Capital Territory of India and a modern-day citadel that's dotted with ancient monuments.

History and Culture

Legend estimates it to be over 5,000 years old. Over the millennia, Delhi is said to have been built and destroyed 11 times. The oldest alleged incarnation of the city shows up in the Indian mythological epic Mahabharata as Indraprastha. 

Leh Ladakh

A land of scenic beauty and creations
Being the capital of Ladakh, is one of the most beautiful and fascinating tourist destinations The region is blessed with beautiful landscapes, sky-kissing monuments, tranquil lakes and evergreen forests.
Manali, himachal by Aniket431 / CC BY

Manali

Himachal Pradesh covers the north front of the country, offering the tourists with some of the most wonderful hill stations in the world and Manali is undoubtedly one of the most visited one. The main credit goes to its snow-covered peaks, alluring ambience, gorgeous valleys and lush greenery. It is a charming slope station located at the reservoir of the River Beas. The tourists from all parts of the world, look for the best tour packages for Manali, every year, as it is the most appreciated getaway in India.

Detailed Itinerary

  1. Day 1 Arrive Delhi

    Delhi

    Arrive Delhi where you will be received by our representative who will escort you to your hotel. Check into the hotel.

    Overnight at the hotel

  2. Day 2 Delhi

    Delhi

    In morning depart for sightseeing start with tour of Old Delhi. On the tour you will head out to explore this exotic locale with its narrow dirt roads, myriads of people and inexpensive and colourful bazaars that keep alive the traditional workmanship for which Delhi has always been famous. Drive past the Red Fort and take a bicycle rickshaw ride. Visit the Jama Masjid, the largest Muslim mosque in India. Post visit Old Delhi with your guide visit the most prominent Sikh Gurdwara, or Sikh Temple, in Delhi. Later, drive to the outskirts of New Delhi to explore Humayun Tomb the 16th-century Tomb of Humayun, the second Mughal emperor whose resting place is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, thanks to its ground breaking Mughal architecture.

    Overnight at hotel (B)

  3. Day 3 Delhi - Leh (3505 meters / 11567 feet)

    Leh Ladakh

    Early morning check-out from the hotel transfer to Delhi Airport to connect with flight to Leh.

    On arrival, check-in to the hotel.

    Leh, the capital city of Ladakh and a historical transit point for caravans of the bygone Silk Route, still looks and feels like a trading post of the ancient past. It is an imminently accessible and fascinating locale, featuring two notable monasteries, a palace, a mosque, and countless narrow, crooked alleyways beckoning the curious visitor. District Leh is situated roughly between 32 to 36 degrees North latitude and 75 to 80 degrees East longitude with an altitude ranging from 2300 meters to 5000 meters above sea level.

    Full Day at rest for acclimatization and Evening Visit Shanti Stupa for sunset, it was built in1991 by Japanese Buddhist and hold relics of Buddha at its base. Later drive and walk around local market to buy if required something . Dinner and overnight stay at the Hotel in Leh.

    Overnight at the hotel (B, L, D)

  4. Day 4 Leh - Shey - Thiksey – Hemis - Leh

    Leh Ladakh

    Start your day with the visit of Shey, the King’s old Palace. The Palace was built by King Deldan Namgyal in the beginning of the 17th century AD as a summer residence for the Kings of Ladakh. It is the oldest palace in Ladakh and above it is an even older fortress. The Palace and Fort are in ruins but the monastery is in use to this day. Inside is a 39-foot statue made of gilded copper of the Shakyamuni Buddha, which was made by King Deldan Namgail in the memory of his father Singay Namgail. The statue is the only of its kind in the region.

    We make our way towards the Thiksey Gompa - an impressive imitation of Lhasa’s Potala Palace dramatically perched on a slope overlooking the Indus Valley. Thiksey is the most beautiful of all monasteries in Ladakh, belonging to the Gelukpa order. The Gompa was first build at Stakmo by Changsem Sherab Zangpo of Stod. Later the nephew of Sherab Zangpo, Spon Paldan Sherab, founded the Thiksey Gompa on a hilltop to the north of the Indus River in 1430 AD. There are sacred shrines and many precious objects to be seen there.

    After lunch at a local restaurant, visit the Hemis Gompa, the biggest monastery in Ladakh. Located 45 Km to the south of Leh, it is built on a green hillside surrounded by spectacular mountain scenery and hidden in a gorge. The Monastery belongs to Dugpa Kargyutpa order and houses monks of the Brokpa or Red Hat sect. One can see beautiful frescoes (paintings) on the walls and the largest Thangka painting in Ladakh, which is over 12 m in length. Within the monastery there are to be seen a copper-gilt statue of the Lord Buddha, various stupas made of gold and silver, sacred thankas and many objects. The Monastery was founded by the first incarnation of Stagsang Raspa Nawang Gyatso in 1630, who was invited to Ladakh by King Singay Namgial and offered a religious estate throughout the region.

    Overnight at the Hotel (B,L,D)

  5. Day 5 Leh to Kargil (120 Km/ 5-6 Hrs)

    Leh Ladakh

    Start drive towards Kargil through a picturesque landscape, we reach the confluence of the Indus and Zanskar River. Furthern drive to Alchi ,A 1000 year old and only monastery on flat ground, and Mulbekh Monastery is famous for 9Mtr tall status of Maitreya Buddha then visit Lamayuru , The History of Lamayuru monastery dates back to the 10th Century. Astounding beauty welcomes you to this absolutely mesmerizing spot. Fondly know as Moonland amongst the Local here. The Namika La at 12,200ft and Fotu La at 13,479ft. The Peaks of the passes were no doubt beautiful but the ascent and descents were unbelievably gorgeous too Dinner and overnight stay at the Hotel in Leh.

    Overnight at the hotel (B)

  6. Day 6 Kargil – Rangdum (3800m/12467ft)

    Leh Ladakh

    Morning after breakfast proceeds towards Rangdum. After a short drive from Kargil we enter in to the Suru valley. Suru valley is one of the most beautiful regions of Ladakh, and is the heartland of Kargil. You will enjoy the view of massive Nun and Kun peak and the Parkachik glacier. There are many other unnamed Glaciered peaks on the way. On arrival at Rangdum, check in at Camp.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  7. Day 7 Rangdum – Padum (3550m/11646ft)-Stongday

    Leh Ladakh

    After morning breakfast proceed to visit the Rangdum monastery. Thereafter, proceed to Zanskar. An hour drive from Rangdum is the Penzila pass(4200m) only pass to Zanskar. Around Penzi-la there are also many unnamed glaciered peaks and the famous Darang Durung Glacier. This area is very scenic and you will find many shepherd huts here. Upon arrival, check in Camp at Stonday.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  8. Day 8 Stongday - Stongdey-la (4850mtrs) – Doksa. 6-7hrs

    Leh Ladakh

    Today we Start our Trek with the climb. It’s an uphill walk to cross Stongday-la. It is not so steep to climb stongde la. But it is long. It will take almost 4 hours to reach at the top. You will arrive at the top around at 1 Pm. Sometimes you will found snow at the top of pass depending on the weather. Today there is a good chances of seeing some wild animals. From the top of pass you will found magnificence views. Then descend till the camp site called Doksa. Doksa means the camp were the nomadic people settle for seasonally. The descend to camp is easy with beautiful landscape.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  9. Day 9 Doksa - Souluntaktak (6-7hrs)

    Leh Ladakh

    This day will be one of the most memorable days of the trek. Because You have to cross the stream several times while walking along the valley. After twenty minutes walk from the camp you will start cross the stream. The water is so cold because of the weather as well as the narrow valley. In the valley are some up and down also. You have to cross the stream for 8 to 10 times. You will be in the valley for four hours by crossing the stream side by side. After that you will climb up little and then continue to the camp. Today the camp is beautiful with spring water and nice scenery. In this route there are lesser people and tourist, It is mostly possible to meet local people from Shade and Stongde.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  10. Day 10 Soulantaktak – Shadey – Thangtak ( 6-7hrs)

    Leh Ladakh

    Today again you will walk along the valley. Now you will see different landscape as before. You will walk by some up and down. At some part you have to walk along the bank of little river. You have to cross the little rive before Shade and continue by little climbing to main road. And you will also see very old moviable bridge of Shade. After 45 minutes walk from that you have to turn left to enter the beautiful shade village. At that point it look like artificial gate by rocks. After 15 minutes walk from tha you will arrive at Shade village. The village is very isolated in Himalaya. During these season people are busy in harvesting, collecting their potatoes, collecting the grass for animals. People are impress by seeing tourist because there are very people coming from outside. After that you will back to camp decending from Shade willage and you will see one family village with little monastery called Thangtak. Then you will continue to camp near the river.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  11. Day 11 Thangtak - Phuktal (3850 M 6-7 hrs)

    Leh Ladakh

    This is the day you will visit the famous Phuktal monastery. Morning after breakfast you will cross the little river and continue to phuktal. Usually it is possible to see snow leopard in this ways. After 1 hour walk from the camp you will meet Tsarap river. You will follow the Tsarap river till Phuktal Monastery. On the way there are some up and down ways. The ways are good because it was repaired last year only. On the way you will find Shukpa, which is local incense. Reach Camp site.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  12. Day 12 Rest Day

    Leh Ladakh

    After relax breakfast , Visit Phuktal Monastery which is famous for its structure. It is built in a cave on the side of Soft Rock Mountain. The monastery is built by Changsem Sherap Zangpo, disciple of Gyalwa Tsongkhapa, the founder of Gelukpa sect of Tibetan Buddhism.

    Overnight in the Monastery (B,L,D)

  13. Day 13 Phuktal – Testa (3800 M 5-6 hrs)

    Leh Ladakh

    Trek through bank of river and can view beautiful place Sumzom , where we can have good view of Purni, Yal & Cha village , Looking back to Phutak is very beautiful from here also , Then further trek for a while and will see meeting point of Thunak & Tserap river. Reach beautiful village of Testa & camp site is there .

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  14. Day 14 Testa to Zingchen vai Toden La Pass 5100 M (5 Hrs)

    Leh Ladakh

    After relax morning, trek towards Zingchen via upper & lower village of Testa, today we have a little up & down including a pass called Toden La (5100 m), which is not so difficult and further trek through village of Drangsa and to Tsaple is beautiful view to see. Camp site at Zingchen.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  15. Day 15 Zingchen – Chumik Marpo via Phirtse La (5490 Mtr) 6-7 hrs

    Leh Ladakh

    Today we have to bit steep trek around 2 Hrs before reaching a pass called phirtse-La , which is a moderate pass as compare to many other , then descent towards phirtse Chu Valley & from here about half an hour or so we will be there at Chumik Marpo camping site.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  16. Day 16 Chumik Marpo to Brangsa Stongchak (6-7 hrs.)

    Leh Ladakh

    Today we have easier trek as just few ups & down till Khamarip village and will meet Lingti Chu (River ), trek through the river till village a small village of Brangsa Stongchek and camp just near to river.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  17. Day 17 Brangsa Stongchak – Sarchu (4-5 Hrs)

    Leh Ladakh

    After relax morning, start trek toward Serchu via Shun village, nobody lives there now a day and people migrate to Chumik Gyal , where local people run restaurant during the season at Sarchu , which is just 30 Min walk from Sarchu. Reach Sarchu camp and overnight.

    Overnight stay at Mobile Tent (B, L, D)

  18. Day 18 Sarchu – Manali (230 Km 7-8 Hrs)

    Manali

    Have breakfast and drive towards Manali. On arrival, check in to the hotel.

    Overnight at the hotel (B)

  19. Day 19 Manali-Kullu-Delhi (By flight)

    Delhi

    Today, after breakfast, check out from the hotel and drive to Kullu airport to take a flight to Delhi. On arrival, proceed to your hotel for check in. Rest of the day is at leisure.

    Overnight at the hotel (B)

  20. Day 20 Delhi

    Delhi

    After breakfast transfer to Delhi international airport to connect with flight to onward destination (room reserved till 12 noon).

    (B)

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