Planning the ultimate road trip to Leh Ladakh
- If you are taking your vehicle, MUST to have under body anti-rust coating.
- recommend to remove front bumper nose lip. this will increase the ground clearance.
- REST AND ACCLIMATIZE
- CONSULT A DOCTOR BEFORE YOUR TRIP
- DO make sure you’re a good driver and comfortable off-roading
- DO carry medicines and supplies
- Do carry tablets for altitude sickness
- DO Try to choose hotels or camps that have oxygen supplies
- Try to acclimatise to high altitude gradually.
- DO carry toilet paper – public toilets are a rarity (and grubby!)
- DO make lots of unsolicited stops along the way
- DO make sure your paperwork is in order
- Always carry drinking water and dry food.
- Before you plan to visit Ladakh do collect all information about the weather and road conditions.
- Take complete rest at least for a day after arrival to Ladakh.
- Ladakh is located at a high altitude; thus the level of oxygen in Ladakh is very low. So, it is advisable to move slowly and breathe deeper till your body becomes used to the high altitude and low level of oxygen.
- Take plenty of fluids and drink boiled or bottled mineral water.
- Always carry ample drinking water and dry eatables, dry fruits etc.
- It is suggested that you must start taking 2 Diamox Tablets per day 2-3 days prior to your Departure for Leh by Air and continue it within Ladakh till your Departure from Leh. This is to overcome the effect of High Altitude. It is highly advised that you MUST consult your Doctor and confirm if you can take diuretic medicines like Diamox.
- For all your tours within Ladakh, go for a local Taxi/Cab as outside Cabs are not allowed to move within Ladakh.
- In your initial days of arrival in Ladakh, avoid smoking and consumption of alcohol.
- Do remember to carry First-aid box along with all necessary medicines.
- In Summers (May – September), do carry Cotton wear, light woolens, strong walking shoes, rain proofs and in Winters (October – April), kindly carry heavy woolens, thermal wear, feather jackets, strong walking shoes.
- Before your leave for a tour in Ladakh, do remember to carry fully charged extra batteries/Power Banks for digital products like camera, mobile phones, etc because there is a lot of electricity problem in Ladakh.
- If you have a prepaid Sim Card of any provider, you would not be getting any Signals anywhere in Ladakh. In Ladakh, either only local J&K BSNL Prepaid/Postpaid Sim Cards work or Airtel/Vodafone/BSNL Postpaids from other states work.
- Ladakhi people are known to be very friendly and they love to interact with tourists. So interact with them to know more about their life and culture.
- All the bikers visiting Ladakh should go in a group of at least two or more. There are areas where you would not get help for kms, a group is always better than going solo.
- People can ask their Cab Drivers to carry oxygen Cylinders while travelling to high Altitude Location around Leh. They may charge a nominal amount for it. However, it can help you to breathe properly in areas where you have problems breathing.
- Make sure your have the Innerline Permit if you are planning to Visit areas like Nubra Valley and Pangong Lake. As of September 2017, they would charge your Rs.400 per person + Rs.20 per day per person for the permit. So, for a 3 Day trip, permit for 1 person will cost you Rs.460. You can also get the permit sitting at your Hotel, by paying about Rs.100 per permit. Note : Do carry your Address Proof document like Aadhaar Card, Driving License etc. because the photostat copies of your Address Proof documents will be needed for permit.
- Car Inverter (220v, 200W)
- Carry 100-150W immersion rod to boil water or carry 12V DC car cup to warm water
- Do NOT follow your GPS blindly
- DO NOT depend on Mobile Connectivity or expect good internet
- DO NOT forget your sunscreen
- DO NOT refer to Google Maps for time frames
- If you reach Leh by air, stay that day and do not plan to go anywhere for that day, as you will need a day or two to acclimatize yourself. Drink plenty of fluids (that does not include alcohol), do not move much for the first two to three days.
- DO NOT use Polythene bags. Ladakh is a “no polythene” zone. Kindly respect this and please carry back all the plastic you take with you.
- Refill your water bottles instead of buying new ones. Mountain water is good. If you have doubt, boil it and refill.
- Wear nice clothes covering your body while on roads, especially while visiting a Buddhist Gompas.
- DO NOT BE FUSSY ABOUT FOOD AND ACCOMMODATION
- Do not click photographs inside any monasteries without taking permission from the monk or the person in –charge.
- Do not use or carry plastic/polythene bags in Ladakh as plastic is banned in Ladakh.
- Do not carry short clothes like skirts/sleeveless blouses tops while you are travelling on roads, especially in Buddhist Gompa.
- Do not try and disturb the wild life.
- Do not exert yourself a lot by running or climbing quickly.
Take Disprin with you if you want to go to Khardung La, as it is very high altitude of 5359m.
If you are not able to go further from a particular spot in day, do not move stay there, as road condition is very bad in some places and it would be very difficult to travel in night.
Temperature in Ladakh is too low and if you will throw any biodegradable item, it will remain in the same state for very long time, especially in snow, people defecate and the shit remains in the same form for years, so please try the Ladakhi winter toilets.
Use vehicles, which have good-ground clearance and are in good condition. SUVs like Tata Sumo Grande, Toyota Qualis and Highlander, Mitsubishi Pajero work best over there.
Make a first-aid box and carry proper medicines for headache, fever, and vomiting also in it.
There is electricity problem in Leh, so it is better to take extra batteries for digital products like camera, mobiles phones, etc. Charge them fully before leaving for the tour. You may not get electricity at some remote places and also because of the cold, the battery gets discharged soon.
If you are planning to visit Leh-Ladakh on your bike, please make a group of 2 or more. Please do not go alone on bikes, especially Royal Enfield Electra or Bullet as it is very dangerous.
People there are very friendly and hospitable. Respect them.
Checklist Prepared by us for this trip
(credits Mohit Gupta)
|Maps + ininerary in mobile||Towel||Kids sunscreen|
|Itinirary Printout||socks||Shampoo pouches|
|Travel guide||Tissues (instead of hanky)||Tooth Brush|
|Photographs||Light Jacket||Toilet soap|
|Passport copy||Warm head cover||hand sanitizer (handy+ big)|
|Aadhar copy||ear cover||Paper soap|
|Recognisable photo id||forehead cover||Tissue papers|
|Driving Licence||Hats/caps||Hand towels|
|DL Copy||Heavy Jacket||Face wash|
|All soft copy in mobile||Woolen socks||Deodorant|
|Car Papers||Woolen gloves||odomos fabric roll on|
|car papers copy||Thermal pairs||Moisturizing cream|
|Confirmation Print||Rain coat + windcheater||talc|
|Mobile Phone (airtel postpaid)||Jeans + Track||Sunscreen|
|DSLR Extra battery||T shirt||Lip guard|
|Digital extra battery||UG’s||Hair Brush|
|battery chargers||Disposable glass||Shaving kit|
|battery bank||Disposable Plates||Cold cream|
|Data cables (1+, moto, android)||Spoons||50% clothes|
|SD Cards||Knife||Playing cards|
|Torch + charger||Ready Food Packs||Perfume Spray|
|Pens||Sauce Pouches||Neck Pillows|
|Notepads||Milk Cartons||Belt Pouch|
|Spectacle + Case (Mohit + Eedha)||Butter||Sunscreen|
|Sunglasses + Case (all)||Snacks||Becosules|
|car invertor||Chewing gum||Motion Sickness medicine|
|Multi plug||Orange toffees||Walking Shoes|
|Car Kettle||Police Card||Slippers|
|Water Bottles (own)||Green tea bags||Umbrellas|
|+ Big Water bottle||Salt & Sugar||Sea band|
|Plastic bags (Small)||Mouth Freshener||Band aid|
|Plastic bags (Big)||Dry fruits||crepe bandage|
|Plastic Zip Lock bags||Garlic Cloves||Vomitab|
|Twist Ties||Cough Syrup||Electral Packets|
|Candle||Paracetamol Syrup||LED Buld attachment|
|Pen Drive + songs||Combiflam||Spare tube|
|Laptop||+ Syrup||10# spanner|
|Cash||Combiflam ointment||diesel jerrycan|
|Cr Card||Insect repellent||spare bulbs|
|Chain||mopar certificate||roadside assisstance number|
|warranty certificate||Swiss knife + Window breaker||Puncture kit|
|Car Spare keyfob||check tool kit||air pump|
|check stepny||glass cleaning chemical|
** please note that the above checklist & do's/ don'ts are just recommendations/ suggestions, following or not following them is entirely your decision. We do not take any responsibility and we are not liable for any damage caused during your trip.