Perilous Paths: Navigating Through The Most Dangerous Roads In India

 In Travel Facts

People talk a lot about the destination but not so much about the roads. What they don’t realise is that the journey makes it all better. The roads make way for your destination, but how about having to travel on roads where you are not sure whether you are going to see a heavenly place or meet God himself? Sounds Scary, isn’t it?

A life full of adventures and thrill is a life worth living. Road trips are fun and adventurous, but how about travelling on some of the most dangerous roads in India?

You can find the scariest roads in India, and the voyage on them will be full of adventures that you never thought you could have, not on a road at least.  Well, before we let the cat out of the bag and reveal the most dangerous roads in India, don’t forget to check out our Leh Ladakh Tour Packages which is abode to one of the dangerous roads in India which we will be talking about below. So hurry and scroll through the most dangerous roads in India.

Leh-Manali Highway 

Image Source : Times of India

The Leh-Manali Highway is one of the highest motorable roads with an elevation of 17000 ft above sea level and connects with Ladakh. This is, without a doubt, one of the most scenic locations but also one of the most dangerous roads in India. This 479 km long road traverses through some very narrow roads that are prone to accidents. During the winter season, the road gets covered with snow, making it even more dangerous than it already is. Due to the high elevations, altitude sickness may occur, and it would be dangerous if the driver is not properly acclimatised to such high altitudes. The roads become even scarier when the monsoon or winter season kicks in. The visibility is a little less at that time, and since these roads are very narrow, there cannot be a scope for error. One wrong move can be life-threatening. 

To be more careful, you should: 

  • Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and avoid dehydration.
  • Get yourself properly acclimatised to avoid acute mountain sickness in Ladakh
  • Do your research on the weather conditions before planning your trip.
  • Try hiring a driver who is accustomed to driving on such roads. 
  • Take breaks in between, and do not exhaust yourself.

Gata Loops

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The Gata Loops are said to be a marvel of engineering in the Himalayas because of the stunning bends that not only make you fall in love with the place but are also very scary at the same time.

Gata Loops are the 21 hairpin bends that will leave you awestruck with its beauty, and I am sure that no amount of words can do justice to the stunning views that one witnesses. It is one of the most challenging and scariest roads in India. The 21 hairpin bends elevate from 13746 ft to 15255 ft above sea level in just a few minutes. This road was constructed back in the 1960s, and it was no piece of cake as there were a number of challenges, including the rugged terrains, high altitudes, and the unpredictability of the weather. The bends were made in such a way that the vehicles do not lose momentum, and each loop is at a 180-degree angle so that the drivers can take turns without having to reverse.

Kolli Hill Road

Image Source : zeenews.india

Offering breathtaking views of the land, Kolli Hill Road passes through the Kolli Hills found in the Namakkal district of Tamil Nadu. This road is one of the deadliest roads in India and has proved to be fatal to a number of bikers. Even experienced drivers have to keep their undivided attention and be very careful while driving as there are sharp turns and barely two vehicles can pass each other at the same time. There are no safety barries, making it even more dangerous, and sometimes the drivers who haven’t driven here underestimate the gravity of the situation, and that usually causes accidents. The major problem is that often there are traffic jams because mostly buses and trucks use this route and take up almost all the space, leaving very little space for smaller vehicles which increase the risk of collision. There are almost 70 hairpin bends that make the road absolutely narrow, and it requires the driver to slow down because if they don’t, they might lose control over their vehicle, and it would not end well. For several years, this road has been a real-life threat to motorists, and several accidents have already been taking place, but nothing has been done to improve the road’s poor condition, and nothing stops thrill seekers from visiting here.

National Highway 22

Image Source : lifeberrys

National Highway 22 is a road that connects the capital city of India to Shipki La, a town which is on the border of India and China. Apart from offering pristine beauty and mesmerising views, National Highway 22 is one heck of a dangerous road and has witnessed several accidents, and some even fatal. 

The narrow and winding nature of National Highway 22 is what has been a primary cause of these fatal accidents, as there are no safety barriers and there are sharp and blind turns making it very risky for drivers. Another factor is that most private vehicles use this road, which means they leave very little space for other vehicles, eventually increasing the risk of accidents. Potholes, cracks and lack of proper signage add to the danger. Some of the accidents that took place were due to overspeeding, reckless driving, landslides, etc.

Zoji La Pass

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Zoji La is a high mountain pass with an elevation of 11500 ft above sea level, and it connects the cities of Srinagar and Leh. The pass has a narrow width and steep gradient, and poor road conditions have resulted in a number of accidents in the past few years. The road is covered with snow most times of the year, making it one of the most dangerous roads in India. Due to snow, it is very slippery and is prone to accidents. There are also risks of landslides and falling rocks.

Sangla Road

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Located in the Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh, Sangla can also be considered one of the deadliest roads in India because of its steep inclines, narrow width, sharp turns and poor road conditions, which makes driving here quite a task for the drivers, especially those who are travelling on this road for the first time. It is advisable to hire a driver who is accustomed to driving in the area. The primary concern here is that the road is very slippery, which makes it prone to accidents. You have to be very careful while driving on this road because several accidents have been reported, and some fatal ones as well, because of a lack of safety barriers and primarily due to driving errors and, in some cases, reckless driving as well. The condition of the road is bad, probably due to the natural disasters that have taken place over the years, such as avalanches, snowstorms and landslides as well. Due to a number of accidents reported, few improvements have been made to the condition of the road. Efforts have been made to widen the roads, but it is not as simple as it sounds.

Despite being one of the scariest roads in India, it offers breathtaking views. and natural splendour that will leave you stunned by the picturesque beauty.

Kishtwar Road

Image Source : Pinterest

Our very own paradise on Earth, Jammu and Kashmir, is home to the Kishtwar district, which includes Kishtwar Killer Road, which is a single narrow lane road. Located at an altitude of approximately 13000 ft above sea level, the Kishtwar Road stretches up to some 110 km and offers scenic views and wonders of nature. Like every other dangerous road, Kishtwar Road road is no different because here, again, it is very narrow and lacks safety barriers to avoid accidents. Steep inclines and descents are making driving a lot more complicated than it already is in the hilly areas. Usually, the drivers of hilly areas are different from the ones who drive on plains because there is a vast difference between driving between the two places. However, when it comes to driving on one of the most dangerous roads in India,  the scenario is a lot different. Thus, you need expert drivers who have been travelling on such kinds of roads. Heavy traffic takes place on this road, which usually consists of buses and large trucks, leaving very little space for small vehicles to pass through or overtake them in any manner. The road needs a lot of improvements, and as long as there are no significant improvements made to the road condition here, it will remain a deadly road and will lead to even more accidents because every time there are landslides or even if it rains, the road’s condition becomes poorer.

Bum La Pass

Image Source : Flickr

Out of all the dangerous roads in India, Bumla Pass is one of them and is a high mountain pass found in the northeastern part of Arunachal Pradesh on the India-China border. It offers some picture-perfect views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. The beautiful views, the scarier the road, making it one of the scariest roads in India. This high mountain pass is situated at a towering elevation of approximately 15200 ft above sea level, stretching up to approximately 109 km, passing through lakes and sleepy hamlets, making it worth the drive.

The extreme weather conditions have made the conditions of the road poorer over time. These roads, well, are the scariest roads in India for a reason, they have no safety barriers, and a vehicle can lose control and may jump straight into the valley just because of the lack of basic requirements. The lanes are very narrow, making it difficult for two vehicles to pass each other at the same time. Bum La Pass is mainly covered with snow throughout the year, which adds to the difficulty of driving here. The lack of infrastructure and medical facilities is a little challenging here. The area is quite remote and has significantly less accessibility which means that basic medical facilities are hardly available here, and even if it is, access to it is minimal. In case of accidents or other emergencies, one might feel helpless because of its remote location.

There have been attempts to widen the road, but it is not an easy task because the area is prone to landslides and is mainly covered with snow, thus making it challenging to make amends.

Rohtang Pass

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We have all been to Rohtang Pass. Well, most of us have, and those who haven’t must have at least heard the name or seen the pictures. Rohtang Pass is a popular tourist destination but sadly, most of the time, it is closed because, let’s face it, it is one of the most dangerous roads in India. To avoid any mishaps, the road remains closed whenever there is a slight hint of bad weather or risks. Located in the state of Himachal Pradesh, Rohtang Pass is around 50 km long and is situated at an elevation of 13051 ft above sea level. For a long time, this road had little or no safety barriers, and the road’s steep inclination and descents have made it a dangerous one and driving here a little risky. However, over the years, this place has become a tourist hotspot and seeing the popularity of the place, the government has taken the initiative to make amends to the roads. Several safety barriers have been set up, improvements in road conditions have been made, and roads have been widened. The Indian Government has played an active role in implementing the improvements and has put restrictions on the number of vehicles that can pass through it in one go. This was done to control the traffic that used to be one of the issues, but now, with the restricted number of vehicles, the problem of congestion no longer exists, and maybe that is why it is among the most popular and scariest roads in India.

Khardungla Pass

Image Source : Times of India

Khardungla Pass is famous for being one of the highest motorable roads in the world and as one of the best places to visit in Ladakh, with an elevation of approximately 18379 ft above sea level. It is located in the Ladakh region of Jammu & Kashmir and is accessible from Leh by road. For adventure enthusiasts and travellers looking for a thrill, Khardungla Pass is one that you should not miss out on. The beauty of the road lies in the fact that it is one of the scariest ones in the country. Covered with snow and ice most time of the year, makes this road very slippery, and the blind turns to make it an accident-prone area. Even experienced drivers have trouble driving here, and they are supposed to give their undivided attention because the weather is very unpredictable, and there can be sudden temperature changes and visibility issues. Due to the high altitude, there is a possibility of altitude sickness. Hence, it is advisable to keep drinking water and keep yourself hydrated, and proper acclimatisation is necessary to avoid all of it. 

Even though these roads are deadly, scary and dangerous enough to send a chill down the spine but the beauty of the surroundings covers all that up. Maybe that’s why, despite the fact that there is a life risk involved, people still travel on these roads all the time and enjoy their adventures because no matter how difficult the road is, the destination would definitely be worth it.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Which is the No.1 dangerous road in India?

It is actually quite difficult to name just one road that is the most dangerous in the country because every road has its challenges and issues. It totally depends on your perspective and the places you have visited before so that you can measure the gravity of the danger you might feel while you are at it. However, some of the most dangerous roads in India are the Rohtang Pass, Bum La Pass, and Khardung La pass among others.

2. What are the 10 most dangerous roads in the world?

The world is full of surprises and the scary roads that people are so keen on travelling to will make you, even more, surprised at every turn you take.The ten most dangerous roads in the world are:

  • North Yungas Road, Bolivia
  • Trollstigen, Norway
  • Halsema Highway, Philippines
  • Karakoram Highway, Pakistan/China
  • Stelvio Pass, Italy
  • Skippers Canyon Road, New Zealand
  • Kolyma Highway, Russia
  • Guoliang Tunnel Road, China
  • Sichuan-Tibet Highway, China
  • Trans Siberian Highway Russia

3. Which Ghat is very dangerous in India?

Ghat stands for a road that is in zigzags and makes its way through mountainous terrains. Some dangerous ghats in India are Khardunla Pass, Rohtang Pass, Zojila Pass, Amboli Ghat and Malshej Ghat.

4. Which is the highway of death in India?

Few highways have received the title of the highway of death because of the number of fatal accidents reported here, some of which are Mumbai-Pune Expressway, NH-44, NH-66, NH-65, and the Delhi-Jaipur Highway. These highways have witnessed a large number of fatalities due to reckless drivings or trying to overtake heavy vehicles. Thus, the name highway of death is quite appropriate for these roads. 

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