Chicham Bridge -An Engineers Marvel

 In Places To Visit, Spiti, Travel

An engineering marvel, Chicham Bridge is a spectacle worth visiting in Spiti Valley. Standing tall at an elevation of 4150 m, the Chicham Bridge is an engineering feat. It connects Kibber Village with Chicham, over a deep gorge of 1000ft. The 420m long bridge spans a substantial canyon quite similar to the Grand Canyons in Arizona. High-strength steel wires comprise the bridge’s suspension cables, fastened to the rock on either side of the gorge.

Modern engineering tools and methods were used for this massive construction project in Himachal Pradesh. The bridge was built sustainably to reduce the environmental impact.

Before the Chicham Bridge was constructed, it was a challenging task to reach Chicham Village, and took 2-3 hours to reach. Prior to the completion of this bridge in 2017, residents utilized a pulley-driven ropeway to connect Kibber and Chicham villages.

However, with the opening of the bridge, the journey from Kibber to Losar Village has been drastically reduced by 40 km. Another marvel which is worth mentioning while visiting the Chicham Bridge is the deep gorge below. It is a 1000 ft drop and is known as Samba Lamba Nallah. 

It is one of the most spectacular places in Spiti Valley and is totally Insta Worthy!

How to reach Chicham Bridge

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The suspension bridge is an hour’s drive from Kaza, the sub-divisional HQ of Spiti Valley. Because of the tough terrain, it took 15 years to build the bridge. A popular tourist spot, the bridge is laden with Tibetan prayer flags. During the summer, the road from Kaza to the Chicham Bridge is easily accessible. However, during the winter, the road conditions become extremely tough. If you want to arrive at Chicham or Kibber from Manali without stopping at Kaza, you may take the road towards Kibber from Kiato.

There are two ways to go to Chicham village: one from Kaza to Kibber and the other from Manali to Chicham through Kiato.

You can reach Chicham Bridge from Kaza easily by car. The bridge is located about 20 km from Kaza town. You can also visit Key, Kibber and Chicham on a day trip from Kaza while visiting Chicham Bridge.

You can also reach Chicham Bridge from Manali. If you are driving from Manali, the road bifurcates at a place called Kiato. This new road via Chicham Bridge had reduced the distance to Kaza by almost 40 km. However, this road has some rough patches.

Places to visit nearby Chicham Bridge

key-monastery

You can also plan a day trip to the following places while visiting Chicham Bridge

  • Key Monastery

One of the most revered monasteries in Spiti Valley, Key Monastery is around 1000 years old and also serves as a center of Buddhist learning. It is also the oldest training center for lamas and can accommodate around 350 lamas at one time.

As with many other Monasteries in Lahaul and Spiti Valley, the iconic Key Monastery is also perched at a hilltop at an altitude of 4166m. It is also the largest monastery in Spiti Valley.

The monastery is dedicated to Lochen Tulku, the 24th reincarnation of the great translator Ltsawa Rinchen Zangpo. It is about 12 km north of Kaza and 210 km from Manali by road.

  • Kibber Village

One of the most picturesque villages in Spiti Valley, Kibber is an absolute photographer’s delight.

Be it the wildlife sanctuary which is situated here, or its snow-capped mountains surrounding the entire village with lush green meadows, Kibber Village has something for everyone and is definitely worth visiting. You will find homestays here where you can spend the night and go Stargazing in Spiti Valley and even spot the Milky Way!

  • Chicham Village

Another remote village in Spiti Valley, Chicham Village is a small little place which is located just adjacent to Kibber Village separated by the deep Samba Lamba Nallah and now connected by the Chicham Bridge. You can also visit a small cave which is located here in the village and go on a hiking trail to the nearby Tashigang Village, Gette Village.

The best time to visit Chicham Village

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The months between June and August are the peak tourist season in Spiti Valley. The weather is pleasant with clear skies and warm temperatures. The roads are also accessible, making it easier to explore the region. However, this is also the busiest time and popular tourist spots can get crowded.

If you do not mind the crowd then the Spiti Valley in August and June are the best time to visit Chicham Bridge.

Why is Chicham Bridge famous among tourists?

Chicham Bridge is an engineering marvel which is built over a deep gorge of 1000 ft, and connects two villages in Spiti Valley. The bridge in itself is a spectacular work of genius and the viewpoint from here is just out of the world.

Are there any accommodation options near Chicham Bridge?

There are no accommodations near Chicham Bridge. However, you may find homestays in the nearby villages of Kibber and Chicham.

What other attractions are there near Chicham Bridge?

There are a number of options that you can visit near Chicham Bridge, like Kibber Village, Tashigang Village, Chicham Village, Kunzum Pass, etc.

Is there an entry fee to cross Chicham Bridge?

No, there are no charges as yet to cross Chicham Bridge.

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