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About Ladakh Holidays - If the Earth was an apartment building, Ladakh would be it’s penthouse offering unparalleled views of the world with an atmosphere that will change your world view. Getting to the top floor is simple, just book one of Thomas Cook India’s Ladakh Tour Packages. On our site you will find a host of Ladakh Holiday Packages for every budget and duration. From a quick 3 nights and 4 days to a leisurely 12 nights and 13 days, each and every Ladakh tour by Thomas Cook India promises to make you feel on top of the world, in every sense. Also, with prices ranging from INR 14,999 to INR 51,999 and Ladakh holidays inclusive and exclusive of flights, you are in charge of your vacation to Ladakh, with Thomas Cook India acting as your guide to this rugged, beautiful wilderness.
Thomas Cook India’s Ladakh tours are crafted by a team of travel experts as passionate about your Ladakh holiday as can be. Offering unmatched service right from the booking stage to the very tour itself you can trust us with just about everything. Right from accommodations in hotels, to the warmth and safety of tents while trekking, to hot meals to beat the bone chilling weather of Leh and Ladakh, embarking in a tour of Ladakh with Thomas Cook is a once in a lifetime experience.
With Ladakh holiday packages available from all major cities such as Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Ahmedabad and more, getting to Ladakh is a breeze. Also if you are looking to understand more about Ladakh then visit our Ladakh tourism section which covers everything about Ladakh like the Know all about Ladakh, Places to visit in Ladakh, Best time to visit Ladakh, and much more.
Thomas Cook’s Ladakh packages include the Chadar trek that will have you crossing frozen lakes on the way to attractions such as the Tibb cave. Prayer flags and stupas are your landmarks as you trek to Zanskar gorge. Visit Nerak which is named after ‘Narak’ or ‘Hell’, a village where temperatures routinely touch -30°C. If you’re lucky you might spot the graceful Himalayan Ibex on the mountainsides. While you’re doing all of this our tour guides and support staff will ensure a one of a kind experience. But a Ladakh holiday is much more than just a trek. With Thomas Cook’s Ladakh tour packages the adventurous Chadar trek is just a highlight of what promises to be a whirlwind trip to this mountain paradise. Before your trek, spend time acclimating to picturesque Leh. See the sacred Sankar Gompa as you watch the sunrise over majestic Leh. Eat kulchas and piping hot thukpa for breakfast as you gear up for the long trek to Chadar.
These Ladakh packages also come with the added bonus of seeing attractions such as the Tibb cave where you will spend a night, walk past frozen waterfalls and prayer flags on the way to Zanskar and live like a local at Naerak. Spot snow leopards if you’re lucky on the way back as you cross frozen rivers and gorgeous gorges. All this while in the capable hands of our trek guides and support staff while fueled by delicious Tibetan butter tea that will keep you warm in this land of frozen wonders.
You also have the opportunity to rest at Leh once your tour is done and catch up on anything you may have missed out before flying back home with a mind full of memories. Remember to carry an extra suitcase as you will be carrying back a whole lot of experiences from your Ladakh holiday with Thomas Cook.
Best Time to Visit Ladakh
The best time to visit Ladakh is in the summer, from the end of March to the middle of August.
The beginning of April is when life in Ladakh begins to bounce back after a long hard winter. The warmth of the sun returns to melt away the snow and breathe new life into the people, plants and animals of this region. The mean temperature during the month of April meanders from a high of 16°C to lows of -1°C. The warm temperatures liquefy the frozen Pangong and Moriri lakes adding to the already beautiful landscape.
May to mid- June is when the temperature rises further with the lows settling at around 5°C. This is usually when the Rohtang pass opens up adding an element of adventure should you choose a bike trip from Manali to Leh as part of Thomas Cook’s Ladakh tours meant specifically for adventurous millennials.
July to September is when the temperatures are highest with highs hovering in the mid-twenties and lows of about 5 -10°C making this undoubtedly the best time to visit. This is also when the Hemis Festival commemorating the birth of Padmasambhava the founder of Tantric Tibetan Buddhism is held. These celebrations are energetic, vibrant and a must see on your Ladakh trip with Thomas Cook.
October is when snowfall begins, and winter descends on the valleys of Ladakh and lasts till February. Temperatures begin to steadily plumett reaching lows of up to -13°C during the peak of winter in mid-Feb. This is the best time to undertake the Chadar trek as the Ladakhi desert is blanketed with snow making your Ladakh holiday a trip to a winter wonderland.
The nearest airport is Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport located in Leh. This airport is connected to almost every major city in India and internationally with many daily flights to and from Delhi’s IGI airport. This airport is also a military airport, hence it is a high security zone and it is imperative to have hard copies of all your travel documents ready when you enter Ladakh via the airport.
There are many government and private bus services operating buses from Srinagar and Manali to Ladakh and Leh. The drive is thrilling as you will drive through valleys and narrow mountain passes. Choosing Srinagar as your starting point, you will pass through Zoji La Pass to reach Ladakh and choosing Manali takes you through thrilling Rohtang pass.
Both passes are open from June to October, though heavy snowfall means your journey might be delayed by a few hours to a couple of days, so plan accordingly. Ladakh has the world’s top three highest motorable mountain passes and biking along the mountain passes, stopping occasionally for a steaming cup of butter tea or chai is also an option chosen by many seeking adventure. Thomas Cook can ease the burden of planning a bike trip to Ladakh thanks to its bike tours from Manali to Ladak.
Be it the beautiful Buddhist monasteries or the stunning Zanskar lake, Ladakh is known for its natural beauty that will take your breath away, and not just because of the lack of oxygen. This rugged land is a great celebration of natural beauty. A canvas painted by the Creator that will leave you in awe. Let us take a look at the places that you might want to visit in Ladakh.
Located in Chanspa, this white-domed Buddhist monastery is a masterpiece of the Leh – Ladakh architecture, reflecting the true culture of Tibetan Buddhism. This magnificent stupa was built by the Japanese in 1991 to promote World peace and harmony as part of their Peace Pagoda Mission. This grand stupa is located on top of a hill in Chanspa. At the base of the Stupa, some relics of Buddha are buried and the 14th Dalai Lama enshrined the Stupa. The stupa has become a huge attraction for tourists not just for religious reasons but the fantastic view it commands. Victory Tower is located on top of the Leh Palace and it was built to honor the Ladhaki troops’ victory over Balti Kashmiris.
The Hall of Fame
The Hall of Fame is a museum dedicated to the war heroes from the Kargil war and is a bright display of the courage those who made the ultimate sacrifice, telling great stories that will make you appreciate all that our armed forces do for us. The highlight of this museum is a section called the ‘Op Vijay Gallery’. Here, you can see the munitions used in the Kargil war, along arms caches captured by the Indian Army during the war. On the same floor, in yet another section, various kinds of apparel and equipment used by troops stationed on the Siachen glacier have also been displayed.
Built in the 17th century by the King Sengge Namgyal, this palace in Leh is one of the most beautiful architectural wonders of Leh that you need to visit during your vacation to Ladakh. Originally constructed in the year 1553 by the Buddhist kings, the Leh Palace houses the splendid architectural splendor in the form of a statue of Lord Gautam Buddha. The palace also offers an astounding and breath-taking view of the city from a height. Originally built on the top of Namgyal Hill, the place is significant to Buddhism and Buddhist culture.
This unique location has baffled the scientific community and conspiracy theorists alike thanks to a road where vehicles and objects appear to roll uphill on their own. But in reality, the topography of the area and surrounding slopes create the optical illusion of a hill. Objects and cars on the road may appear to roll uphill in defiance of gravity when they are, in fact, rolling downhill. It is 26.5 km west of Leh on Srinagar-Ladakh road.
Tsemo means ‘Victory’ and this fort is Known to be visible from any part of Ladakh, the Tsemo Fort is a tiny fort covered in prayer flags that served as a vantage point since it’s construction in the 16th century. Directly underneath the fort is the Tsemo gompa and Tsemo monastery that consists of two temple buildings built in the 15th century with an an eight meter tall gold-faced statue of the Maitreya Buddha.
Yet another stunning architectural wonder, the Spituk Monastery, is also known as the Pituk Gompa, which attracts a number of spiritual tourists around the world as it is an important Buddhist pilgrimage centre. Pituk Gompa was founded in the 14th Century and is located about 5 km from Leh. On the top of the Gompa is a three-tiered shrine. The statues inside the Gompa are of Buddha and Tsongkhapa. The adjoining Gelukpa Shankar Gompa features Kushok Bakula Rinpoche who was the former Lama of Ladakh. Namgyal Tsemo Gompa is located above the palace and is open to the public for two hours from 7 am to 9 am.
The Hemis Monastery is a cultural and spiritual centre where the popular festival of Hemis takes place, to commemorate the birth of Padmasambhava the founder of tantric Tibetan Buddhism. The Hemis festival in 2020 is scheduled to be held from the 30th of June to the 1st of July. This festival exhibits the radiance of Buddhist traditions and rituals with great splendor. You must visit this place to experience the spiritual celebration of tantric Buddhism, which is often accompanied, by music and dance.
One of the most prominent Buddhist monasteries in the region of Ladakh, the Phyang Monastery attracts a wide range of religious and spiritual tourists from across the world. Situated at a distance of fifteen kilometres from Ladakh, Phyang Monastery exhibits retrospective thangkas, murals of the Mahakala and wall paintings. There also exists a museum that is situated inside the Phyang Monastery. This is a monastery that is about nine hundred years old and houses several collections of antiques such as weapons, scriptures and idols or effigies.
Affiliated by the Gelung sect of the Tibetan Buddhism, the Thiksey Monastery is one of the most important religious centres of Leh. It is also known as the Thiksey Gompa. Embellished to resemble the Palace of Potala located in the Lhasa in Tibet. Thiksey Monastery is twelve storied complex housing essential artifacts of the Buddha like tapestries, thangkas, statues and even swords.
Old Town Leh
All the houses in this region are made of bricks and mud alongside small alleyways that boast a spectacular surrounding. It can be reached either by a motorbike or on foot. The whole town of Leh is characterized by its distinct old world charm and appeal. Small alleyways, stairs, mud-brick houses and the ruins of ancient Gompas make the region an ideal place to revisit and relive the spectacular past history - of the globe’s coldest and chilliest desert. An unusual feature of the small houses situated here is that they do not consist of many windows.
Food in Ladakh
The food in Ladakh is simple, based on the few ingredients that grow in this arid landscape. It is also rich, nutritious and filling to meet the body’s increased need for calories in the cold weather and high altitude on your Ladakh tour.
Chutagi is a soup made with vegetables and bow-tie shaped flour dumplings. Served piping hot, Chutagi will keep you warm and nourished during your Ladakh trip.
Similar to Chutagi, but also made with meat like yak or mutton, the key difference is the dumplings here are shaped into tiny discs. You will find skew on many menus during your Ladakh tour.
Paba is a mountain bread made with roasted barley flour that is kneaded with a little oil and sugar. Paba is usually eaten mixed with buttermilk and vegetables. This is a staple of Ladkahi cuisine and will feature on the menu during your stay in Ladakh.
Butter tea is drunk across Ladakh and is a refreshing sweet/salty take on typical chai made with tea leaves, milk and yak butter. This is a hot nutritious beverage available all over Ladakh to keep you warm on your Ladakh trip.
Momos need no introduction though eating piping hot momos with spicy chutney in the chiilly Ladakhi climate will undoubtedly be the culinary highlight of your vacation to Ladakh.
Thukpa is a spicy noodle soup that is made with vegetables and may contain meat. It is to Ladakh what dal and chawal is to the rest of India. You will find stalls ladling out piping hot thukpa all across Leh and Ladakh on your Ladakh tour.
Things to Do In Ladakh
The list of things to do in Ladakh when you’re on tour with Thomas Cook is both fun and culturally educational. Your itinerary during your Ladakh holiday is sure to feature some if not all of the activities mentioned below.
Visit the Hemis Festival
The Hemis festival is scheduled to be held from the 30th of June to the 1st of July. This festival is a riot of colours and sounds and should be on your itinerary during your Ladakh trip. A key highlight of this festival is the Chham performed by the lamas at the Hemis Monastery. The Chham is a form of ritualistic meditative dance performed as an offering to the Gods. The lamas don fierce lion masks and vibrant costumes while performing lending an aura of intrigue and majesty to this performance.
Ride a Camel through the Hunder Dunes
Ladakh is after all a high-altitude desert. And where there’s a desert, there’s sand dunes. The dunes in Ladakh are located in Hunder and set against the rugged wilderness with snowcapped peaks and the beautiful Shyok and Nubra rivers. The camels are double-humped Bactrian camels which were once used by caravans on the Silk route. Ride through history on the bac of these beasts on your Ladakh holiday with Thomas Cook.
Try Maggi and Tea at the Highest Cafeteria in the World
Maggi takes on a whole new avatar once you’ve tried it at the cafeteria at the Khardung La pass, the highest motorable road in the world. The Maggi and chai here are served with a side of magnificent views of the Himalayas and will make your Ladakh tour all the more special.
Complete the Chadar trek
With Thomas Cook’s special 6 night-7 day Chadar Trek, you will be treated to Ladakh like no other. Featuring experienced guides, sherpas, doctors and even cooks, this trek is adventurous yet comfortable thanks to provisions for sleeping tents and dedicated portable toilet tents, this is a great starter trek for those wishing to undertake more adventurous treks in Ladakh, Leh or anywhere in the world.
Go to Hell
Nerak, named after ‘Narak’ or ‘Hell’, in Zanskaar is a tiny village in Ladakh situated at 11,150 ft that experiences nightime temperatures as low as -30°C. This is also the site of the Zanskaar waterfall that is frozen in winter. The gripping sunset from Nerak is a sight to behold on your Ladakh holiday.
Watch the Sunrise at the Shanti Stupa
Shanti Stupa in Leh is amongst the most popular Tibetan structures that is known for its architecture and beauty. Its white-dome structure is truly mesmerising, and the place offers Watching the sunrise here will revive your soul amidst the peaceful ambiance of this stupa. The stupa was established by a popular Japanese Buddhist, Bhikshu Gyomyo Nakamura in the year 1991.
Spot a Snow Leopard
There are approximately 200 snow leopards left in Ladakh and they can be found at the Hemis sanctuary. The best time to spot these majestic felines is summer, when there is no snow to camouflage their glistening white coats.
Shop for Souvenirs in Leh
Leh’s Old Town is a fantastic place to shop for souvenirs from your Ladakh trip. From Tibetan prayer flags blessed by monks to handicrafts such as Tibetan silver jewellry and fabrics such as Pashmina shawls and art such as Thangka paintings, they can all be found in Leh’s Main Bazaar or the Tibetan Market in Ladakh.
Go off roading in Nubra valley
If you seek adventure on your Ladakh trip, look no further than the Nubra valley. You can ride ATV or go dune bashing in SUV’s among the silver dunes that dot this rugged landscape.
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