Ladakh Mountains

Planning Ladakh Travel for the First Time? These 12 Proven Tips will help you!

Last updated on August 27th, 2023 at 09:59 pm

Are you planning your first Ladakh Trip but had lingering questions on how to go about it. Dont worry. These proven, time-tested Ladakh travel tips will answer your key questions, remove confusion and help you plan for your Ladakh trip in 2023!

Having been there multiple times, let us tell you that Ladakh is an experience of a lifetime. The rugged cold desert in the Himalayas is charmingly beautiful.

We hope these Ladakh Travel tips will help you have a memorable experience in this lovely place on your first visit.

Ladakh Travel Tip 1 – Book Air Ticket and Accommodation early

Tickets to Leh are expensive. Especially during the peak season months of May – July. It is good to book air tickets early to save costs. The same goes for hotels. It is difficult to get good hotels at short notice. Book well in advance and ensure you get accommodation in the hotel of your choice!

Ladakh Travel Tip 2 – Make sure to pick a window seat!

Yes. We are telling you this is what no one has! Please make sure you get a window seat when you fly to Leh and on the return flight. The view of the mountains from the plane is mind-blowingly beautiful! Keep your camera ready and if possible carry a binocular as well. Do you want to see how mountains look from the sky? Check out this link.

Ladakh Travel Tip 3 – Acclimatise well

The key to a successful and memorable Ladakh trip is acclimatization. If there is one most important of all Ladakh Travel tips that needs to be strictly adhered to and there is no compromise, it is acclimatization. You need a minimum of 24 hours to acclimatize to the high altitude conditions of Ladakh. It does not matter whether you are the fittest person or not. Everyone has to be acclimatized. Here is a comprehensive guide from The Himalayan Club – the country’s oldest and most respected mountaineering club – on High Altitude Sickness. Don’t plan your travel without reading this.

Ladakh Travel tip 4 – Keep a Buffer Day

Again, no one gives this tip! Weather in the mountains can not be predicted. Roads may get closed due to snowfall, landslides, or even an accident. It is always good to keep a buffer day when you book your return flight while planning your trip to Ladakh.

Ladakh Travel Tip 5 – Drink a lot of Water

You bet. This is a must. You must be wondering why we are saying as Ladakh is a cold place. The reason is the altitude! In high altitude, dehydration is a major issue and drinking water helps you stay healthy. Please read the guide by The Himalayan Club in tip No 2 above for more details.

Ladakh Travel Tip 6 – Drive Safe – Leave Early and Return Early

ladakh travel tips

Hill driving is all about being safe. Always keep an hour or two as a buffer when you plan. Also, plan for any unfortunate eventualities. Keep the phone numbers of your hotel owners handy. The road conditions have improved in the last ten years. That doesn’t mean you have to drive rashly. Make sure your local driver also drives safely.

Leave early & reach early. This is the mantra for hill driving! Firstly, the sun rises very early in Ladakh compared to other parts of India except the North East. Secondly, as the day pass by, snow on the mountains will melt which may result in road blockages due to streams overflowing. Thirdly, it is good to return to base before sunset which can happen only when you leave early.

Please check this. If you are planning a day trip to Pangong Lake, you need to leave early.

Ladakh Travel Tip 7 – Try Local Cuisine

Ladakh travel tips

Forget your parotas or dosas or Idlis! Try the local cuisine of Tupkas and Momos. Try the local roti called Khambir which is a soft marinated roti. Excellent!

Ladakh Travel Tip 8 – Keep Medicines Handy

Carry all your medicines and make sure they are always with you. You will not be able to buy medicines at the eleventh hour like in cities.

Ladakh Travel Tip 9 – Budget your Costs

When you plan a Ladakh trip, plan your budget well. Today, one has options for all types of budgets. You have options for luxurious hotels or budget-friendly hostels and homestays. Transportation in Ladakh is expensive and taxi unions fix taxi rates. Food is not expensive. Plan your travel costs well.

Ladakh Travel Tip 10 – Enjoy the Drive

Ladakh Travel tips

In Ladakh, it is the drive that is more fascinating than the destination! We have said this many times. Keep your eyes open to spot lovely colorful mountains, sand dunes, beautiful valleys, lakes, monasteries, and villages. The landscape changes every ten kilometers. Enjoy the drive!

Take a look at our drive to Turtuk from Nubra here!

Ladakh Travel Tip 11 – Pack Woolens

Please don’t be under the impression that you are travelling in summer and there is no need for woollens. Always carry woollen even in summer months. It gets very cold at night though sunny during the day. More so if you are staying in tents in places like Pangong, carry two good sets of woollen at minimum.

Ladakh Travel Tip 12 – Memory Cards

You will be spoilt for choices to take pictures! Ladakh is photogenic. Please don’t regret when your phone or DSLR memory becomes full and you don’t have anything as a backup. If you are using the phone for taking pictures, make sure you have enough data left. If you are using DSLR make sure you have enough memory cards.

Here is a detailed 7 Days Itinerary for the Ladakh trip with a detailed daily plan for you. Please check it out.

If you are planning a road trip from your home to Ladakh, we strongly recommend you to subscribe to Chalo Ladakh program by HV Kumar, the doyen among Roadtrippers in India. He will plan, guide, and handhold you during the complete trip. Please click here for details.

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We hope you liked reading this post on Ladakh travel tips. Ladakh is lovely. Plan well to have an awesome experience. May we request you to share this with your friends?

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