“Picture Perfect”- that is the one phrase that comes to mind as one takes the 150 Km odd journey from Leh to the unsullied and pristine Nubra Valley. A journey, you aren’t likely to forget in a hurry. Much like a picture postcard the trip unveils its many miracles. Climbing steadily out of Leh and the Indus Valley, the road crosses the Khardung La pass, one of the highest motorable passes in the world before plunging into the Valley. It is here that the Shyok River meets the Nubra or Siachan River to form a large valley that separates the Ladakh and Karakoram Ranges.
With an elevation of 3048 metres above sea level, Nubra Valley is a Y shaped valley, a tri-junction located in the north-east of the Ladakh Valley. To the north of the valley lies the majestic Siachen Glacier while its north-western side is flanked by the Karakoram Pass and the Sasser Pass.
Like the rest of the Tibetan Plateau, Nubra is a high altitude cold desert. Just before you start to imagine the place in your mind’s eye, it will help to know that the uniqueness of Nubra brings together snow capped mountains, a dune like stretch of the valley floor, opportunities for hiking; in short several days of exploratory bliss! Come summer and the valley takes on a whole new hue with its fruit gardens and wheat, barley, and mustard fields. You are also bound to be mesmerized with the apricot and almond growth. Little surprise then that the valley is known as the “Food Bowl of Ladakh”.
Major Attractions of the Valley
Diskit is the main town and administrative headquarter of Nubra Valley which is well connected with Leh by road. The town is famous for the Diskit Monastery; built as early as 1420 AD, it is one of the largest and ancient Buddhist peace-houses in Ladakh. The main attraction of the Diskit Gompa is the 32 meter high statue of Maitreya Buddha situated on a hillock and overlooking the valley. Even if you aren’t spiritually inclined you are bound to relish the picturesque beauty of the Karakoram range from the monastery.
Hunder Sand Dunes
There is no way you would like to miss a trip to Hunder Village with its white sand dunes. While in Hunder, the famous double-humped Bactrian camel safari is a must do!
Just a few kilometers away from the majestic Siachen Glacier lies the Panamik village. The place is known for its sulphur springs, with their aesthetic as well as curative qualities. This little village also serves as the base camp for the trek to Ensa Gompa.
Yarab Tso Lake
Nestled around 15 Kms from Diksit, in the serenity of Sumur Village lies the Yarab Tso Lake. This hidden lake unveils itself after a 15-20 minutes hike uphill and charms every visitor with its crystal clear water.
Fairs and Festivals in Nubra Valley
If you want to soak in the culture of the place, there is nothing better than being a part of the valley’s fairs and festivals. The major festival of the Valley is the Dosmoche Festival, also known as the “Festival of the Scapegoat”. Celebrated in the Diskit Monastery during the month of February, it is known for the masked dance performed by the Lamas that depict the victory of good over evil.
The festival of flowers held every spring, is also a veritable treat for the eyes with the festival becoming an occasion for celebration of the Buddhist faith. Other famous festival includes the Losar Mela (New Year) celebrated for two weeks during December-January
Nubra Valley isn’t just meant to soothe your soul with its picturesque beauty, it is also a must visit for adventure enthusiasts. The Nubra Valley Trek is on the bucket list of every trekking enthusiast. Walking through breathtaking gorges, large meadows and snow bound passes, this trek offers spectacular views of snow caped peaks as also the famed monasteries of the region.
The Phyang Hunder trek is a particularly popular trek where you get to explore the Ladakh ranges and set foot on part of the Great Karakoram range. The trek starts in the beautiful village of Phyang while the trails lead you to Lasermo La, located at an altitude of over 5400m.
Best Time to Visit
The perfect time to visit this gorgeous valley is between June to September. You can enjoy the lush greenery of the valley with its beautiful flora and fauna.
While you can avail of the many hotels in the valley, luxury tents remain a popular alternative. Surrounded by majestic mountain peaks and gently caressed by natural springs, stay in these luxury tents brings together the best of both worlds.
Whether you are an adventure enthusiast, want to undertake a cultural trip or simply want to savour the overwhelming beauty of the Nubra Valley, at Wenomads we offer a range of bespoke travel experiences crafted especially for you. Go ahead and indulge yourself in this land of unparalleled beauty!