Explore the Best of Ladakh’s Mountainscape: 12 Must-Visit Trekking Spots In 2023

 In Adventure, Backpacking Trips, Holidays, India, Ladakh, Travel

One experience that gives you a taste of real taste and essence of a Ladakh trip is trekking in Ladakh, the best part. It is easily available for you to explore and take part in. Such trips take place on the territory of Ladakh’s ideal terrain. The Himalayan and Karakoram mountain ranges—two of the largest in the world—can be trekked down to reveal their wild sides for an experience for a lifetime. A journey that takes you to colossal monasteries, stunning lakes, snow-covered summits, and an unexplored country. Take in the solitude as you peacefully stroll in the breathtaking natural setting.

With active trekking tours, you may see a completely different side of trekking in Ladakh’s hilly area. Experience the wild side by travelling between the Himalayan and Karakoram mountain ranges, two of the largest in the world. In addition to capturing memories through pictures, you may wonder about this area to discover snow-covered peaks, rich blue lakes, arid landscapes, and more. At the same time, you take a peaceful stroll amidst the breathtaking natural scenery of this area.

Ladakh is a popular tourist destination region in the northern part of India. It is known for its rugged terrains, spectacular landscapes, and unique culture. Ladakh is also a popular destination for adventure seekers, especially trekkers. The region offers many trekking opportunities, from easy hikes to challenging climbs. We will explore 12 amazing Treks in Ladakh that you need to visit in 2023.

1. Chadar Trek

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The Chadar Trek is one of the most famous options for trekking in Ladakh. It is a winter trek that takes place on the frozen Zanskar River. The trek offers stunning views of the frozen river and the surrounding mountains. The Chadar Trek is challenging and requires high fitness and endurance. The best time to do these treks in Ladakh is from January to February when the river is frozen.

The Chadar road serves as a lifeline for Zanskar because it is inaccessible to the rest of the nation during the winter due to ample snowfall. Chadar Ladakh trekking has elevated to the “next big thing” status in Ladakh over the years, and it is simple to understand why. The trekkers’ endurance is tested while walking 105 miles of the frozen Zanskar River, one of the most beautiful lakes in Ladakh in temperatures between -25 and -35 degrees. 

Also, a few hikes pass by gorges with frozen waterfalls and cling to an ice path that transforms into a mirror for the sky. Documentaries, particularly one from the BBC’s “Human Planet” series from 2011, have covered the Chadar journey.

Best Time: January and February

Duration: 9 days

Difficulty: Level 3

Max Altitude: 11,123 ft.

2. Markha Valley Trek

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The Markha Valley Trek is a classic option for trekking in Ladakh. It takes you through the most beautiful valleys, remote villages, and high mountain passes. The trek starts from the village of Chilling and passes through several villages, including Skiu, Markha, and Hankar. This popular Ladakh trekking offers breathtaking views of the Himalayan and Zanskar ranges.

This well-known trekking in Ladakh is in the Hemis National Park’s Markha valley. Situated between the snow-covered Stok Kangri peak to the north and the Zanskar range to the south, the Markha valley parallels the Indus valley. On this walk, you will see wild animals, stunning mountain landscapes, small, remote settlements, and lush barley fields. In these communities, you can also choose to stay in homestays and learn about the locals’ way of life.

The trek can be completed in 6 to 8 days, depending on the beginning place. From Spituk and Chilling, respectively, there are two ways to get to the Markha Valley. The journey from Spituk is the lengthiest one. Before arriving at Hemis, where the walk finishes, it travels through the Ganda La (4961m) and Kongmaru La (5260m) passes. Starting the trip from Chilling is a more accessible and quicker option for people who need more time or want to skip the Ganda La pass.

Best Time: End of April to the beginning of October

Duration: 6 to 8 days

Difficulty: Level 3

Max Altitude: 5260m

3. Stok Kangri Trek

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The Stok Kangri Trek is the most challenging trekking in Ladakh. It is a high-altitude trek that takes you to the summit of Stok Kangri, the highest peak in the Stok range. Ladakh trekking requires a high level of fitness and acclimatisation, and it is recommended for experienced trekkers. The best time to do this trek is from June to September.

Whether beginning a climbing expedition in the Himalayas or attempting to climb above 6,000 meters, the Stok Kangri peak is one of the best treks In Ladakh. Although the peak is relatively easy, climbers must utilise all the necessary mountaineering equipment, including crampons, an axe, a rope, etc. During the day of acclimatisation at base camp, the expedition leader will briefly overview how to use the equipment.

You will realise that the Stok Kangri Ladakh Trekking remains worthwhile when you reach the peak and take in the breathtaking vista of the surrounding mountains, even though it is physically and mentally taxing. Either Stok or Spituk are viable starting points for the adventure, or it can be coupled with the Markha Trek.

Best Time: Mid-June to the end of September

Duration: 4 to 6 days

Difficulty: Level 5

Max altitude: 6153m

4. Sham Valley Trek

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The Sham Valley Trekking in Ladakh is an easy trek that takes you through the picturesque villages of the Sham Valley, one of the 50+ amazing places to visit in Ladakh. The trek starts from the village of Likir and passes through several villages, including Yangthang and Hemis Shukpachan. This Ladakh Trekking offers stunning views of the Indus Valley and the surrounding mountains.

Undoubtedly, the Sham Valley trip provides hikers with some beautiful scenery. It is frequently called the “baby trek” due to its simplicity. This hike is ideal if you’re searching for a simple trip suitable for your kids. It is possible all year long and always under 4000 metres.

The walk goes through many tiny towns where you can stay the night in a homestay and eat the traditional cuisines the families have cooked. The walk can be completed with visits to historic and well-known monasteries in Likir, Rizong, Temisgam, Basgo, and Alchi.

Best Time: All year round

Duration: 3 days

Difficulty: Level 1

Max Altitude: 3874m

5. Snow Leopard Trek

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The Snow Leopard Trekking in Ladakh is a unique trek that takes you to the habitat of the elusive snow leopard. The trek takes you through the Hemis National Park, one of the world’s best places to spot snow leopards. The trek requires a high level of fitness and endurance, and it is recommended for experienced trekkers.

The endangered wild cat in the world, the beautiful Snow Leopard, can be found only in Ladakh. The Hemis National Park hosts the Snow Leopard Trek throughout February and March. Together with many other mammal species, including Tibetan Wolves, Asian Ibex, Blue Sheep, and Ladakh Urials, the Hemis National Park is home to Snow Leopards.

In temperatures below zero, finding the elusive snow leopard is undoubtedly tricky. These kinds of wildlife trips require patience. Many people have seen snow leopards in their binoculars after waiting for hours, and even days, and have even travelled home with photos of the large cat on their cameras.

Best Time: March

Duration: 8 days

Difficulty: Level 2

Max Altitude: 3956m

6. Lamayuru to Alchi Trek

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The Lamayuru to Alchi Trek is a cultural Ladakh Trekking option that takes you through some of the oldest monasteries in Ladakh. The trek starts from the village of Lamayuru and passes through several monasteries, including Wanla and Alchi. The trek offers a glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of Ladakh.

Not only are the ancient monasteries in the western region of Ladakh well-known, but so is the walk from Lamayuru to Alchi. Two difficult passes, Kongskil La (4948m) and Stakspi La (5153m) are scattered throughout this five-day trek and will test your endurance to the very limit. But you will be rewarded with breathtaking alpine scenery. If you want a close-up look at the culture, spend evenings at homestays in outlying communities. Before or after the walk, consider visiting monasteries.

Best Time: Mid-June to mid-October

Duration: 5 days

Difficulty: Level 5

Max Altitude: 5153m

7. Nubra Valley Trek

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Also a famous spot for mountain biking in Ladakh, the Nubra Valley trekking in Ladakh is a scenic trek that takes you through the picturesque Nubra Valley. The trek starts from the village of Hunder and passes through several villages, including Diskit and Sumur. The treks in Ladakh offer stunning views of the Karakoram Range and the Nubra River.

The route that connects the Indus Valley and the Nubra Valley is from Phyang to Hunder. It follows a historic trade route that the old Silk Road once connected from Central Asia to India. The Lasermo La Pass (5438m), covered in ice and snow even in summer, is the highest point on this off-the-beaten-path excursion. A beautiful view of the Karakoram mountains may be taken from the Pass. This best Ladakh trek takes five days to complete.

You will see the main sights of the Nubra Valley after the trip. You can enjoy a double-humped Bactrian camel safari in Ladakh at the Hunder Sand Dunes while admiring the 32-meter-tall Maitreya Buddha statue at the Diskit Monastery. Next, you will take the Khardung La Pass to return to Leh.

Best Time: Mid-July to the end of September

Duration: 5 days

Difficulty: Level 3

Max Altitude: 5438m

8. Spituk to Stok Trek

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For those with limited time who wish to experience a pleasant trek in Ladakh within three days, there is a three-day trip from Spituk to Stok Trekking in Ladakh. Stop at the Spituk monastery, a Gelugpa sect monastery from the 11th century, to begin the walk on a lucky note.

You will arrive in Zingchen after crossing the Indus River, from where it would take two hours to climb to Rumbak. It is a charming village with whitewashed homes encircled by fields of barley and mustard. In this village, homestays are available for guests. After spending the night at Rumbak, climb to the summit of Stok La Pass, one of the highest motorable road and pass for a breathtaking view of the multi-coloured mountains covered in snow. You will have some enduring recollections of the winding route down to Stok.

Best Time: The beginning of June to the end of October

Duration: 3 days

Difficulty: Level 2

Max Altitude: 4855m

9. Zanskar Valley Trek

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The Zanskar Valley Trek is a classic trek in Ladakh that takes you through the remote Zanskar Valley. The trek starts from the village of Darcha and passes through several villages, including Padum and Karsha. The trek offers stunning views of the Zanskar range and the Drang Drung glacier.

The charm of Zanskar rests in its isolation, which makes it one of Ladakh’s most secluded regions. The most fabulous trek in Zanskar, which takes ten days to complete, it passes through small villages, historic monasteries, and stunning scenery throughout the Zanskar range on this route from Padum to Lamayuru. Zanskar Valley Trek is indeed one of the best treks in Ladakh.

Before beginning the trip, you can visit the well-known Phuktal monastery; it was erected in the 15th century and is one of Zanskar’s most remote monasteries. Zanskar offers trekkers stunning landscapes, mountains in practically every colour, and its distinct culture. There are three principal passes in the route: Hanuma La (4724m), Singge La (5009m), and Sir La. (4832m).

Best Time: Mid-June to the beginning of October

Duration: 10 days

Difficulty: Level 4

Max Altitude: 5009m

10. Rumtse to Tso Moriri trek


The Rumtse to Tsomoriri walk is for you if you enjoy viewing stunning scenery. This hike ranks among the most breathtaking and untamed in Ladakh. Trekking via Changthang’s high-altitude plateau takes a week (Rupshu). Six crossings above 5000 metres have diverse vistas and mountains with various colours and textures. Ladakh is a freezing desert, but it does have some lovely lakes that tourists can enjoy. You can explore the lovely Tso Kar and Tso Moriri lakes on this route while Trekking in Ladakh.

The first night of the journey is spent at Kyamar, which is at an elevation of 4500 metres, and the following six days are spent between 4500 and 5500 metres in elevation consistently. Therefore, before beginning such Treks in Ladakh, it’s crucial to have good altitude acclimatisation.

With their herds of yaks and pashmina goats, the Changpa nomads occupy the Changthang plateau. Their campsite is seldom known in advance because they move 8 to 10 times yearly. If you’re fortunate, you might run into some nomads along the trip and be asked to their yak-wool tent to enjoy a cup of butter tea. The Changpa are primarily settled in Korzok, the largest hamlet in the area. This incredible walk comes to an end here, on the shore of the sapphire-blue Tso Moriri lake.

Best Time: Mid-June to mid-October

Duration: 7 days

Difficulty: Level 4

Max Altitude: 5435m

11. Ripchar Valley Trek

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At the Lamayuru monastery, this trekking in Ladakh journey begins. Your trekking in Ladakh experience will be even more exciting and picturesque thanks to this one of the most intriguing treks in the area, peppered with numerous little towns and pasture grounds. The Zanskar and Karakoram Range’s irrigated agriculture fields and the valleys’ flower-filled blooms in July and August are a visual trekker treat.

Best Time: June-September

Duration: 9 days

Difficulty: Level 3

Max Altitude: 17,060 ft.

12. Jhunglam Hemis to Padum Trek

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This trek in Ladakh passes by the lovely monasteries of Hemis and Latza Kongmaru, continues through Zalung Karpo La, Tilat Sumdo, and Zangla Sumdo, and ends at Padum. If you have the time and are interested in is Ladakh trip in 2023, this experience is a must-have.

Best Time: August-October

Duration: 12 days

Difficulty: Level 4

Max Altitude: 11,100 ft.

Tips for Trekking in Ladakh

Before embarking on Trekking in Ladakh, there are certain things that you need to keep in mind. Here are some of the most essential safety tips to help you make the most of your trekking experience in Ladakh.

  1. Acclimatisation is Key: Ladakh is located at a very high altitude, and the air is thin. It means there is less oxygen in the air, making breathing difficult for some people. It is essential to acclimatise to the altitude before starting your trek. It would help if you spent a few days in Leh or another town in Ladakh to get used to the altitude, and for more information, you should also read about acute mountain sickness and how you should deal with it.
  2. Pack Wisely: When trekking in Ladakh, it is important to pack wisely. You should bring warm clothes, a good sleeping bag, a waterproof jacket and trousers, a hat, gloves, and a sun hat. It would help if you also got a comfortable backpack with enough space for all your gear. It is important to pack light and only bring the essentials.
  3. Stay Hydrated: It is essential to stay hydrated when trekking in Ladakh. You should always drink plenty of water and carry a water bottle with you. You should also drink water before going to bed to prevent dehydration.
  4. Respect the Environment: Treks in Ladakh are done in a pristine and fragile environment, and it is important to respect them, and one should be travelling responsibly in Ladakh . It would help if you did not litter or leave any trash behind. You should also avoid using plastic and bring your reusable water bottle and utensils. It is essential to follow the rules and regulations set by the local authorities.
  5. Hire a Guide: It is highly recommended to hire a guide when trekking in Ladakh. A guide can help you navigate the trails, provide information about the local culture and history, and help you in an emergency. A guide can also help you acclimate to the altitude and ensure you are always safe.
  6. Be Prepared for Weather Changes: The weather in Ladakh can be unpredictable, and it is essential to be prepared for weather changes. You should bring warm clothes and a waterproof jacket and trousers. You should also check the weather forecast before starting your Ladakh Trekking.
  7. Start Early: It is recommended to begin your trekking in Ladakh early in the morning. It will help you avoid the midday heat and reach your destination before dark.

Ladakh is a trekker’s paradise, and the region offers many trekking opportunities for all levels of trekkers. The 12 trekking spots mentioned above are some of the best options for Trekking in Ladakh. They certainly provide you avenues for stunning views of the Himalayan range, the Zanskar range, the Changthang plateau, et al. 

Whether you are a seasoned or a beginner trekker, Ladakh has something to offer everyone. So pack your bags now and head to Ladakh Trekking in 2023 to experience the thrill and adventure of trekking in the Land of High Passes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Trekking Spots in Ladakh

1. Is Ladakh suitable for trekking?

Ladakh provides tourists with some fantastic and thrilling trekking opportunities. For those looking for adventure amid mountains and peaks, the Himalayan region is a paradise. Trekking in Ladakh offers various trekking routes with varying degrees of difficulty and time.

2. When should we trek in Ladakh?

May through October are the ideal months for trekking in Ladakh. However, because of the severe snowfall on the mountain passes throughout the winter, some Ladakh trekking is only feasible starting in early July.

3. Which month is best for trekking?

June through September are the best months for the best treks in Ladakh because there is no snow to obstruct the paths, and the weather remains moderate.

4. Which place is best for trekking?

Numerous well-known treks in Ladakh, like the Chadar Trek, the Markha Valley Trek, the Stok Kangri Trek, the Sham Valley Trek, the Nubra Valley Trek, the Lamayuru to Alchi Trek, and others, are best suited to fulfil this ambition.

5. Do we need oxygen cylinders for the Ladakh trip?

Renting an oxygen cylinder in Leh is preferable to be safe and avoid jeopardizing your vacation while you are enjoying the best Ladakh treks. It is particularly crucial for those who took a flight to Ladakh.

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