Ladakh is the largest of the ten provinces of Jammu and Kashmir is bordered by the Karakoram chain of mountains in the north and Himalayas in the south. Ladakh covers a total area of about 59,000 square kilometers and is made up of two administrative districts – Leh and Kargil.
HOW TO REACH
The Leh airport is situated about 8 kms. from the city centre. Leh is connected to Srinagar, Delhi and Jammu by air.
The nearest railway station is located at Jammu, about 739 kms. from Leh.
Leh is about 434 km. from Srinagar and 739 km. from Jammu by road. There is a motorable road between Srinagar and Leh via Kargil. This road, which remains open for traffic from early June to November is the main land route to Ladakh. The most dramatic part of this road journey is the ascent up to the 11,500 feet or 3,505 m high Zoji-la. However, we recommend that the best way would be to go by road to Leh and return by air. Buses, Taxis, cars and jeeps are also available at Srinagar for the journey.
WHAT TO SEE
There are interesting tourist places in Ladakh. The Hemis monastery is the largest monastery in Ladakh. Hemis is famous for the huge painting of Buddha displayed once in 11 years to the public.
The Thiske monastery near Leh is known for its architecture while the Shey Monastery houses a huge gold plated copper statue of the Buddha.
The beautiful Nubra valley with its breathtaking views transports you back into a nearly forgotten ‘Shangri La’. Once the trading route that connected eastern Tibet with Turkistan via the famous Karakoram Pass, it is one of the most recently opened area of Ladakh.
Lakes in Ladakh:-
Ladakh is blessed with some beautiful lakes. The Tso Morari Lake is one of the largest lakes in Ladakh region and is almost like an inland sea, the Pangong Tso, at an altitude of almost 4,500 meters and 134-km long is an amazing sight. Kyaghr Lake is the halting place for trekkers moving from the Kiangdum camping ground to the Tsomorari Lake.
Hemis Wildlife Sanctuary:-
Hemis Wildlife Sanctuary, the high altitude national park beckons the wild life enthusiast.
The popular items of shopping in Ladakh are Pashmina shawls, stoles and woolen garments. Hand-made woolen socks, gloves, caps and sweaters, which are locally made, are also favorites with tourists. You can also check out the hand-woven rugs, carpets and shawls which are available in a range of prices. With floral or geometric designs or dragon motifs on them, they can also be hung as decorative wall hangings.
Tourists in Ladakh can try local Ladakhi food, which is nourishing and usually mildly flavored. Favorites include Thukpa, a thick soup with vegetables that provides a complete meal and delicious Momos or steamed dumplings stuffed with meat or vegetables, accompanied by a fiery chili sauce. There are also many bakeries in Ladakh where you can buy freshly baked bread and enjoy eating it with locally made Apricot Jam. There are many restaurants in Leh, where you can have an international meal or choose from Tibetan or Ladakhi fare if you prefer.