To go to Leh,by air from NeWDelhi,Chandigarh,and Jammu &Srinagar.
There are there airlines operats Jet ,Indian airlines,&Air Deccan .
Summer Rothangpass will open, from Manali you can go by road..
The state transport buses will ply from Manali to Leh.
Only Summer JUNE-September
Best mode of transport around Leh is Zeep.
Roads are bumy &and steep,going around by car&bicycle will be possible but not comfortable.
Leh Taxi&zeeps have union..so all the rates almost same..
Zeep comes with driver,driver acts as guide too..
They driver are well behaved &friendly..The Taxi union office is near the Ibex hotel..
Usually to get permei you need minmum 4 people.
But travel agent can get you permit,even if you are one or 2 people.
For Lake trip and other place you have to get innerline permit .
That Taxi guy will arrange.
Take your passport size photo,it will be needed for getting permit..
For trekking there is lot of trekking company are there.
For trekking also one has to take permit..
You can hire a jeep too and drive in and around Leh ..
You can do Ladakh by road from Manali. The more comfortable way is to directly fly into Leh from Delhi. Yet another option (and equally exhausting as the road from Manali) is to take the road from Srinagar. Road from Manali is more popular with the backpackers since the hill station of Manali is a perfect place to unwind from the stress that one carries from Delhi and get prepared for the onward Ladakh adventure.
There are numerous travel options to Leh - bus, taxi, mountain bike, motor bicycle and of course the famous Manali - Leh trek. We took a bus to Leh that left Manali early in the morning via Rohtang La Pass, first in the series of the many passes in and around Ladakh. One of the most striking things about this journey is dramatic changes in the topography when one leaves the green mountains of Manali and drives into the landscape dotted with loose stones and grass of the most remote region of Himachal - Lahaul and Spiti about which Rudyard Kipling said, "Surely the gods live here; this is no place for men". Beyond that the topography changes once more when one approaches Ladakh; it now turns into absolutely barren obdurate mountains that are packaged by nature in shades of brown, grey, maroon, purple, red, yellow, blue, black!!! Phew...did I leave any?
This road ride from Manali (and probably from Srinagar as well) is probably one of the most thrilling in the world. The bus was at the edge of the cliffs and I was at the edge of my seat. This one's not for the faint hearted. This 475 km journey takes one and a half day and that is if all goes well. As luck would have it our bus had a flat tyre twice and we couldn't reach our night halt at the campsite of Sarchu in time. As travelling at night is close to committing suicide, we stopped in a tent at a place called Bharatpur. I could (so did most of the other passengers) hardly sleep for most of the night and had a severe headache when I got up in the morning; my first signs of high altitude sickness.
Coming from Srinagar, you hit the first real feel for the Himalayas at Sonamarg. Right after Sonamarg comes the Ziji La pass that takes you over the main Himalayan range and into the cold Drass plateau of western Ladakh.
In Sonamarg, where the bus will normally stop for a luch break, prepare yourself for the entry into Ladakh by putting on some warm clothes (or have them ready), grab some tea and have a hot snack or lunch.
Until the Manali road was built, the pass Zoji La on the Srinagar-Kargil route was the key obstacle to reaching Ladakh, wether by foot, horse or car/bus. To this day the Zoji La is a key hole as the pass is seeing a lot of snowfall, and both snow avalanches and landslides are very common. The lower part of the zig-zag pass route is through avalance debris and scree and maintenance is continous. Many lives have been lost here, both soldiers and civilians. Close to the LoC with Pakistan, the origin of the road was military, making a route for tanks to come into the Kargil area to repel Pakistani forces who at one time had lodged themselves in here. The scaling of the pass takes place in convoys in a one-way system to avoid traffic snags and vehciles going off the edge - whcih happens anyway!
Zoji La is closed between November and April/May, depending on the winter's climate. Currently, it may not be feasible or safe for non-Indians to travel this route at all, so the better option if you are not heading in from Srinagar anyway, is to take the Manali-Leh route.
If you are trekking around Ladakh, unless you are very very fit, you will need some support.
Rather than Sherpas, which are used in the western Himalayaa, the normal form of support will come in the form of horses/ponies. These will always come with a horseman. Each horse was carrying 20kg on the trek I went on.
You can organise this at one of the trek head towns but you run the risk of simply not finding anybody. It is fairly straightforward to organise things in Leh as there are numerous agencies on the main roads who can organise things for you. Dependent upon the length of your trip and level of support required expect to pay between $10 and $50 per day.
You can, if you are short on time or simply want to rely on the back up that a western company can provide, rely on a western company to do all this arranging for you. Obviously, if you do this you can expect to pay more. (probably $150/day).
Some companies can, also, organise pony trekking tours.
The army, of Mountain Tamers, presence has improved the roads in Ladakh signficantly. The road tamers have used numerous very entertaining signs to try to discourage excessive speed or drink driving. These will no doubt feature in an entertaining book one day.
Jeeps are the recomended form of tranport around the roads of Ladakh. Preferably 4 wheel drive on a account of the steep roads and possiblity of snow. You can easily hire a jeep and drive rin Leh.
Gesar-Travel is the best bet, when it comes up to travelling in the Ladakh-Area.
Tashi has been a tourist guide for quite some years, and his wife daniela is a good friend of mine.
As she is from Austria she knows the needs of us travellers from abroad.
No matter if you want to go hiking, make a guided tour or a wildlife tour, they can help you out.
Getting around Ladakh you have have just two option... bus or jeep.
We didn't try the bus and advise against it unless it is for short distance trips..
As for jeeps.. there is a taxi union of Ladakh which doesn't tolerate jeeps/taxis of other regions plying in the paradise.
So if you are on your own car then its fine otherwise if you have taken a jeep from manali then you need to leave it after reaching the place.
Since there is a union, there are fixed plying rates... though it is also negotiable.
Remember if you ask the hotel guys to arrange for a taxi it becomes a lil convenient but it adds about 10% to your cost as the taxi guys have to pay to the hotel for giving the client.
After the first day negotiate with the taxi guy directly for further trips..
Rates vary depending on the distance and the accessibility factor.. You would find it a bit on the higher side but not much can be done about that.. There are 4-5 options.
If you are looking for maximum confort then you can go for costly options like Ford Endeavour/Pajero>Mahindra Scorpio> or Tata Sumo/Toyota Qualis.
These are SUV models available for hire.
If you are not looking for extra comfort then opt for Sumo over Qualis as the former has better seating space.
For rates check out the travelogue or the must see options!!!
There are more than one option to choose from.
One is the air route which is linked from Delhi. Costing about INR 6,000 or $ 130 a head in economy class or INR 8,000 or $ 180 a head in Biz class.
There are two airlines which have the link.. Indian Airlines and Jet Airways(when I was there IA was offering a combo scheme where in INR 6,500 per head you could have travelled Biz class in a pair)
But it is recommended that you take the land route into Ladakh and air route while returning as otherwise it creates problem of acclimitisation and altitute sickness.
The land route has two roads: Manali-Leh or Srinagar-Leh.
The latter is a pin as it passes through an army restricted area and you need to follow lotta procedures.
Manali-Leh route is more picturesque, more demanding and just needs to be experienced.
One way fare from Manali-Leh or even the other one costs about Rs 10,000 a jeep but can be bargained down to Rs 6,500 level as we did.
If you are in a group its cool anyway, but even if you are alone you can take the jeep by contacting one of the travel agents who have daily trips during the season and can share seats(but this can get nasty with less space and lotta discomfort)
Not a very informative tip, this, but I just wanted to add a Leh Airport photo since this place apparently causes much excitement among the VT crowd!
Make sure your aircraft doesn't hit the monastery at the end of the runway...
There aren't many jet travels that compare to the flights in and out of Leh, Ladakh. Propeller plane flights, yes, but not 737s.
Because of the altitude the aircrafts used here are specially equipped with wider wings that can handle landing/take-off at high altitude.
At the end of the runway there is a small mountain and a Buddhist monastery. It all makes it very interesting.
As you get into the air you also discover the flight path takes you barely in-between and over the 6000-7000 meters peaks of Zanskar and the main Himalayan ranges.
Flights go to Srinagar, Chandighar and Delhi.
Remember that 10% of tourists who arrive by air end up at Leh Hospital in order to get oxygen treatment. You better go slowly in by road, and fly out.
See my altitude sickness warning.
The quickest way to get to ladakh is by plane: from Delhi the flights lasts about an hour, passing over towering mountains: two companies (2003) offered flights there - jet Aviation and Indian Airlines. I used both and I must say that Jet Aviation really has state of the art planes... Indian airlines - let's say that the plane looked older than me. As a sidenote I should add that landing at Leh is thrilling: there's mountains all around the military airport, so the plane has to find its way through them and at times it looks as if it's going to loose a wing into the side of some mountain or other. The take off, by contrast, is disappointing - the planes heads straight up over the mountains, and that's it - no thrill, no breathtaking passages...
Jeeps are the most convenient way to get around Ladakh, although it's possible (but not comfortable) to get around by normal car, motorbike or even bycicle. Roads, when paved, are bumpy - dirt roads are-... well, dirt roads! There are unionised taxis in Leh, and they all seem to use oldish Tata jeeps: which are sturdy is reasonably comfortable. They come together with a driver - and in this respect we've been highly lucky: our drver, Stensing, was not only an excellent, fast and yet careful driver, but a young man full of humour and with his jeep filled with excellent Indian music.
Big discussion here is which is the better method for acclimatization. I favor flying. You will go from Delhi to Leh at 3500 meters. But, if you take a bus, the first day from Manali has you camping at over 4000 meters! The bus trip has spectacular scenery, but if it is acclimatization that concerns you, fly. The day you fly (early morning), sleep here the rest of the day. The following day take only short walks, or just rest again.
The best way to get Ladakh is by road. Srinagar- Leh or Manali-Leh.You can enjoy everyhting, and I love all the 'leyends' on the road: 'better late than never','Small family, happy family','your family waits you, drive slow'. It is the best way but the longest so if you don't have time: short way plane.
It is an adventure too if you fly the Independence Day 15th August. No batteries, no knives(difficult after a trek), even no hand lugagge, be patient to be frisk more than 5 times!Funny, isn't it?