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Ladakh & Kashmir Walking Tour

$2,875.00

On this remarkable Himalayan Journey in Ladakh and Kashmir, you will experience gracious hospitality by our genuinely passionate and professional team. It is this innovative programme that allows you to take gentle nature and heritage walks for those engaging moments to meet the local people and understand their simple way of life, to share a cup of tea with hearty laughter.

While you discover the sacred realms of Tantric Buddhism and Sufi Islam, you will also delve deeper into the universal message of love and compassion preached by the great masters of yore. This contrasting trip from the high altitude barren and rugged Ladakh to the gentle green paradise valley of Kashmir promises to be a transformative journey of a lifetime!!

This Ladahk & Kashmir Walking Tour is perfect for those who love to explore spectacular scenery and rich cultures!

Contact us for more information.

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Highlights Include:

  • Walking through the quaint, traditional villages in the ancient Buddhist Kingdom of Ladakh
  • Sharing a cup of local tea and change (local barley beer) with local villagers
  • Visiting some incredible Buddhist monasteries, set along the backdrop of staggering mountains
  • Taking a gentle shikara (Kashmiri canoe) ride through wetlands in the heart of Dal Lake in Kashmir
  • Sampling delectable, traditional dishes throughout the trip
  • Wandering through colourful local markets and bazaars 
  • Hiking in the Himalayas
  • Experiencing amazing local hospitality

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Day 1 – Arrival – Delhi, India

Perhaps there is no other capital city in the world so steeped in history and legend as the Indian capital, Delhi. It was the magnet that drew the Mangols, Turks, Persians, Afghans, Mughals and finally the British, all of whom contributed to its glorious but turbulent history. The fascination with Delhi was such that even thought it was abandoned many times, its rulers returned to it again and again rebuilding it at least seven times. Today, the twin cities of Old and New Delhi still intrigue Indians and tourists alike as the cultural and political capital of the largest democracy in the world.

Overnight Delhi: JW Marriot Aerocity (or similar)

Meals: none

Day 2 – Arrive to Ladakh (Elevation: 3505 mts

This morning, you’ll have an early morning transfer to the domestic airport in Delhi, to board a gorgeous mountain flight to Ladakh, over the heights of the mighty Himalayas. Fly to Ladakh, the capital of the ancient Buddhist Kingdom. You’ll be welcomed upon arrival and transferred approximately 45 minutes to Nimmu Village, where you will have a full day and evening to relax and acclimatize to the high altitude. Spend a free day in your comfortable rural heritage accommodation.

Overnight: Nimmu House

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 3 – Nimmu – Village Walk & Alchi Gompa

Late morning, after a nice breakfast, you’ll enjoy a guided, slow-paced walk through the village, seeing its’ monastery, old caravanserai, gardens and orchards. While you’re in the village, you’ll come across the local people working in the fields, where you will have a chance to mingle and interact.

You’ll head back to the hotel for a delicious lunch, before an excursion to Alchi Gompa. Alchi Choskar “Religious Enclave” is a group of temples that are 1000 years old. The site was built by the great Tibetan translator & scholar; Lotsava Richen Zangpo. This group of temples are famous for their rare frescoes, wood carvings and stucco art.

Overnight: Nimmu House

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 4 – Nimmu – Hike to Rizong Monastery

After a delicious breakfast, you’ll drive about an hour through zig-zagged, narrow roads with stunning mountain , village and chorten views, to reach Yangthang village, where our walk will commence. 

Yangthang itself is a small village, with only around 20 families living there. Your walk will start downhill, along a scenic trail beside a stream, lined with willow trees and bushes. The train is used by local villages, months, and shepherds, and it will take around 3 hours to reach the Rizong Monastery. 

The hidden Rizong Monastery, meaning “Solitary Place for the Compassionate One” is one of the most prominent monasteries in Ladakh. It was build by Lama Tsultim Nima in 1831, under Gelukpa order. The Lama ordered very strict “Vinaya Rules” in celibacy, to be followed by every month who meditates there. The monastery is also called “the paradise for meditation” and is noted for its’ extremely strict rules and standards. 

Near the Rizong Monastery is the Chulichan Nunnery (Chomoling) and school. At present, there are around 30 nuns who reside here. 

You’ll be picked up and transferred back to the hotel for lunch, and afternoon at your leisure. 

Overnight: Nimmu House

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 5 – Nimmu – Hiking to Buddhist Villages & Monasteries

You’ll have an early start this morning, departing at 6am with a packed lunch from the hotel. After approx. two hours of driving, you’ll reach Nurla Village, and start our walk to Tar village, crossing a food bridge over the Indus river. The walk will talk you 3-4 hours. You’ll start uphill through the narrow valley and gorge, following the village stream, which makes the walk a true Himalayan walking experience. 

Tar village is a Buddhist dominated village with about 10 families. They still practice the traditional organic farming, mainly grows barley, wheat and other seasons vegetables. As you pass through villages, you’ll have a chance to see the locals in action in their terraced fields. You’ll even have a chance to share a cup of local tea and change (local barley beer) with one of the village members.

Later, you will walk back through the same trail, back to the vehicles in Nurla. You’ll drive another 45 minutes to reach Lamayuru and Yangdrung Monastery, one of the most important and sacred monasteries in Ladakh, and incredibly scenic, with staggering mountains in the background. The first monastery was build at the end of the 10th century, and the ruins can still be seen lying deep down below the village. The present building standing above the oasis of the village was built later on. The building is well maintained, and in the main hall there are statues of five transcendental Buddhas, with the celestial Vairocana Buddah in the centre. 

Upon your return to Nimmu, stop at Basgo village and walk up to Basgo Monastery. The building complex includes a ruined fortress dating back to before the 15th century, two large temples and a small shrine. The best preserved temple, situated at the highest point, is the Chamba Lha-khang or Maitreya temple (Chamba is the Ladhaki word for Maitreya, the Future Buddha). It was built in the mid 16th century by Tshe- wang Namgyal, of the Namgyal dynasty who ruled Ladakh. With the exception of Alchi, this temple has the oldest original wall murals in Ladakh, dating to the 16th century.

Overnight: Nimmu House

Meals: Breakfast & dinner

Day 6 – Nimmu to Leh to Saboo

The morning drive to Saboo village takes about 01.30 hrs. Upon arrival in Leh we will start a circular walk covering Leh Palace, Old town, Sankar village & the impressive monastery, Gompa village, Gyamtsa pasture land and Shanti Stupa (Japanese Pagoda) which offers fine panoramic view of Leh town and surrounding mountains including Stok Kangri (6,153 mts.). Most of the trail is through the off beaten track through the villages and some parts of the walk through the road. 

Afterwards, you’ll head to a local Tibetan restaurant Tibetan Kitchen” to enjoy some wonderful local ethnic cuisine. Later explore the local Ladakhi & Tibetan market to collect some interesting souvenirs, books and maps.

Leh Palace: The Royal Leh Palace “Lehchen Spakhar” is located in the heart of the historic town of Leh. The impressive nine-storey palace was built by the ambitious King Singge Namgyal in 17th century. In fact, this is the tallest building in Ladakh. Its is a miniature replica of the Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet. The ruins of Leh palace overlook the entire city of Leh and the Indus valley, and signifies Ladakhs rich heritage. 

Overnight: Saboo Resort

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 7 – Saboo and the Indus Valley

After a leisurely breakfast at the hotel, you’ll drive about an hour to Shang Sumdo. From there, you’ll walk about an hour to the remote little temple of Shang Sumdo, through a fine trail, passing through the agricultural fields of the Shang valley. 

Before lunch, visit Hemis Gompa. It was built in the 17th century by King Singge Namgyal and has enjoyed the patronage of the royal family ever since. The monastery has quite a few gold statues and stupas decorated with precious stones. It has superb collection of thankhas (Buddhist paintings on cotton, usually depicting a Buddhist deity, scene or mandala), including one which is supposed to be the largest in existence and is exhibited only once every 12 years.

After lunch, visit Thiksay Gompa, a monastery that resembles Potala Palace of Lhasa, and has the most imposing structure providing a panoramic view of the green Indus Valley from its high vantage point. It has chambers full of statues, stupas and sacred thankhas. There are 60 resident lamas at this temple, and the library is one of the biggest in Ladakh.

Conclude your day’s sightseeing at Shey Palace in Shey, which was the summer capital of Ladakh in the past. Set upon a hill, and housing the largest golden topped victory stupa, the monastery has a two-storey statue of the sitting Buddha wrought with copper and gold of stupendous grandeur. Many chortens can be seen in front of the building.

Overnight: Saboo Resort

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 8 – Scenic Flight to Srinagar, Kashmir – Houseboat

This morning, you will take a short scenic flight over the gentle Himalayan range of Zanskar with close views of Nun Kun peaks. You’ll arrive Srinagar (elevation: 1600 m), the summer capital of Kashmir. 

Upon arrival, you’ll be picked up and driven past the crocus fields and fruit orchards, to the shores of the Dal Lake, where you will stay 4 nights on an eco-luxury houseboat. You’ll be welcomed by your smiling hosts on the houseboat Sukoon, located on a slice of paradise on a picturesque Himalayan lake. 

In the evening, enjoy a gentle shikara (Kashmiri canoe) ride through wetlands in the heart of the lake to see people farming on the manmade islands, cultivating flowers and vegetables.

Your houseboat enjoys an incomparable position moored on the shores of Dal lake, with glorious views across Dal lake to the snow covered peaks of Pir Panjal, an old fort and a hilltop temple.

Overnight: Sukoon Houseboat

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 9 – Sringar – Kashmiri Way of Life

Inhale the morning air as you tuck into a hearty breakfast on the sundeck of Sukoon, aptly named Fizaa (ambience). This morning you’ll enjoy fascinating walk through the by-lanes of the old city with our most informative local guide; observing the markets, heritage buildings and day to day life, as well as having an understanding of Sufism that reflects the Kashmiri way of life.

The walk begins at Zaina Kadal (bridge). Across the bridge is a living breathing museum of Islamic architecture, where as far as the eye can see are located homes, more than a century old. Tramp through the old quarters of Srinagar city into narrow streets, past structures and buildings, relics from an earlier period, trying to retain their dignity in the fast changing world so alien to them. Perambulating through the narrow lanes and by lanes you come out at the grand mosque of Jami Masjid and later at the Shah Hamadan mosque.

One of the most important mosques Jami Masjid is an impressive wooden structure, notable for the more than 300 soaring pillars supporting the roof; each made of a single deodar tree trunk. The main gate is to the south and the outer cloisters surround a spacious, green and peaceful inner courtyard.

Shah Hamdan Mosque is one of the oldest mosques in Srinagar. The wooden mosque stands right beside the Jhelum River and is noted for the papier-mâché work on its walls and ceilings. No nails or screws were used in the construction of this all-wooden mosque. Originally built in 1395 it has been destroyed by fire in 1479 and again in 1731.

The last stop today on your itinerary is the Zaina Kadal Market to soak up the atmosphere so typical of a local market like the bazaar of Ali Baba. After a traditional Kashmiri lunch in a local restaurant, drive up to the Shankaracharya Temple. The car will take you to the foot of the flight of stairs, leading to the temple point and no further. The rest of way you have to climb but the effort is rewarding because the bird eye views of the valley from the temple precincts are truly breathtaking around sunset. After visiting the temple you take shikara crossing back to Sukoon and it delights!

Overnight: Sukoon Houseboat

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 10 – Sringar – Exploring the Backwaters – Afternoon Hike

This morning rise very early to take shikara boats to backwaters and be amongst the colourful tranquil floating fruit and vegetable market where local merchants ply their fresh produce, saffron and flowers and see the old barter system which is an engaging experience. Warm cup of Kashmiri herbal tea will be offered during the cruise.

Back for another wonderful breakfast on Fizaa. Late morning take an experience of Zawarban hike for about 3-4 hrs (5500 ft) .This is a superb guided hill walk offering great views of Dal Lake and the surrounding hills. The hike is moderate /strenuous and anyone with an average level of fitness can do it. The trail originates from a Sufi shrine near a small village and terminates at a hidden cave where the Sufi saint is believed to have meditated for several years. You will be accompanied by a villager, who will also host your local traditional home made lunch when you finish the trek. In this area you may get a chance to meet local shepherds and gypsy Gujjars as well.

After your hike, you’ll head back to the houseboat for another wonderfully relaxing evening. 

Overnight: Sukoon Houseboat

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 11 – Sringar: Dachigam National Park Nature Walk

After an early breakfast, drive to Dachigam, which takes about 45 minutes. Morning safari in Dachigam National Park which is situated around 22 kms North-East of Srinagar. It was the private hunting grounds of Maharaja Gulab Singh. Dachigam National Park is divided into two areas the lower and upper Dachigam. Enjoy walking safari at Dachigam National Park with naturalist guide.

Dachigam National Park derives its name from the 10 villages that existed before establishment of the protected nature reserve in 1981. The area of park is spread across 141 sq kilometers. The Sanctuary has been a protected area since the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir used the area as the Royal Hunting Reserve. Now a national park, Dachigam Wildlife Sanctuary comprises of several lakes, rivers, flowery meadows, waterfalls, dense coniferous forests and owing to a strictly enforced conservation programme, the Hangul (Kashmiri Stag) population, once 150, now stands at over 400 animals. The park is fed by Dagwan River full of trout fish.

After about 3 hours nature walk in the park, hot lunch will be served in the beautiful jungle outdoors with maybe tasty trout fish cooked freshly by our team.

In the late afternoon you’ll have a tour of the gardens. The delightful gardens located at various points around the Dal lake were all established during the Mughal period have charming appellations – Pari Mahal (abode of fairies) and Chashme Shahi (the royal spring) are two of the unique places that you’ll have a chance to visit. 

Overnight: Sukoon Houseboat

Meals: Breakfast, lunch & dinner

Day 12 – Flight from Srinagar to Delhi

Today you must depart Kashmir, with an early morning flight to Delhi. 

Upon arrival into Delhi, you’ll enjoy an afternoon sightseeing tour to Old Delhi visit to the Red Fort, the Jama Masjid Mosque and Raj Ghat.

Shah Jahan founded the city of Shahjahnabad, now referred to as Old Delhi, in 1648. The famous Red Fort in the heart of Old Delhi was once the most opulent fort of the Mughal Empire and it boasts the Diwan-I-Khas, Hall of Private Audience. Opposite the fort is the Jama Masjid, one of the largest mosques in the world, built by Shah Jahan to dominate the city. The Raj Ghat is the location of Gandhi’s cremation.

Return to the hotel to relax for one last evening, before your departure. 

Overnight Delhi: Hotel Metropolitan (or similar)

Meals: Breakfast

Day 13 – Departure

This morning, you’ll be transferred to the international airport for your flight home.

OR – Option to extend to another part of India – Varanasi, Ranthambore (Tiger Safari), Kerala, Hampi or elsewhere. India is a vast country with so much to explore! Contact us for details [email protected][/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Inclusion & Exclusion” tab_id=”1449208780765-5fd2d40a-5e8d”][vc_column_text]Tour Inclusions:

  • 12 nights in luxury accommodation
  • All meals as per itinerary (12 breakfasts, 11 lunches, 11 dinners)
  • All transfers and sightseeing as per itinerary in private, air-conditioned car
  • Entrance fees to all monasteries, sights, and Dachigam National Park as per itinerary
  • English speaking local guide during sightseeing in Leh-Ladakh, Srinagar & Delhi
  • English speaking naturalist guide during walking safari tour in Dachigam National Park

Trip Exclusions:

  • International airfare
  • Domestic airfare (quoted below)
  • Meals and activities not listed in itinerary
  • Mandatory travel medical insurance (can be arranged through [email protected])
  • Items of a personal nature (beverages, phone calls, laundry)
  • Camera fees at some sites (If bringing a large camera)
  • Tips for guides, drivers, restaurant staff, hotel staff, etc
  • Services and entrances not mentioned above
  • Passport, vaccination and visa fees

Domestic flights (approx costs):

Delhi to Leh: $175 USD

Leh to Srinagar: $160 USD

Srinagar to Delhi: $125 USD

**Airfare is subject to change at the time of booking. Please note that airfare can be quite high in the months of May & June in this region, so it is always best to book early. 

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Walking Tour in Ladakh & Kashmir – 13 days

*Available mid-May to mid-Oct

Price: from $2875 USD per person, based on double/twin occupancy

Payment: You will receive an invoice from come from [email protected].

You are welcome to pay by e-transfer or by credit card.

Using the invoice (separate email), you may pay online.
Please note that the total price of the trip is $2875USD in a double/twin room. A 20% non-refundable deposit is required in order to reserve your spot with full payment being due 60 days prior to the trip. Please email us for payment information – [email protected] 

[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Important” tab_id=”1449289426670-de1f94c1-4595″][vc_column_text]Air Travel
Flights are not included in the tour price. DO NOT purchase any airline tickets until the trip is confirmed to take place. Pre and post tours can be arranged through available at an additional charge. Please contact Finisterra Travel for further details [email protected]

Important Information

Travel Visa requirements and passports are the responsibility of the participants.Cancellation, Travel, Flight and Health insurances are required and are the responsibility of the participant to research and secure the appropriate coverage. We are happy to assist you with Travel Insurance.

Passport Information
Please note that most countries require passports to be valid for 6 months from the date of your return flight. We are not responsible if you are refused entry to a country because you lack the correct passport, visa or other travel documentation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_tta_section][vc_tta_section title=”Hotels” tab_id=”1449208780765-5fd2d40a-5e9d”][vc_column_text]Sample Hotels*:

Delhi – JW Marriot Aerocity (or similar)

Ladakh – Nimmu Village – Nimmu House

Leh – Saboo Resort

Kashmir – Srinagar  – Sukoon Houseboat

Delhi – Hotel Metropolitan (or similar)

*Please note that hotels are just samples and are subject to change and availability.

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