Places to visit in Nako Village: Nako Village Travel Guide

 In Adventure, adventure activities, Best Time to Visit, Spiti, Things to do, Travel, Travel Facts

Situated on the Indo-Tibetan border, at an altitude of 3600m, lies this small remote village, Nako Village, in the Kinnaur District of Himachal Pradesh. This picturesque village is located on the eastern side of Kinnaur District and is the first village, if travelling from the Spiti side, in Kinnaur. A true hidden gem, it is surrounded by lush green landscapes and varied species of flora and fauna. Foreign Nationals require an Inner Line Permit to travel through Nako as it is a sensitive restricted zone. An Inner Line Permit is available at Reckong Peo for Rs. 400 or Kaza or Shimla for Rs. 300 and this is valid for 14 days. Indians do not require this permit. 

The major attraction of Nako Village is the Nako Lake which is located amidst extremely hilly terrains. Close to this lake one can get to see four Buddhist monasteries and a huge footlike impression. You can plan to visit Nako Village in your Spiti Trip Package, which will help you plan your Spiti Valley travel itinerary.

This village is so remote and secluded that it is almost empty between 11 am and 3 pm!! Tourists visit this village while en route to nearby Tabo Village or Dhankar Monastery in Spiti Valley.


8 Top Places to Visit in Nako Village

A trip to Nako Village is considered incomplete without visiting the following places:

  • Nako Lake

Nako Lake is the main attraction of this region. It is situated on the mountainous slopes of Reo Purgyal ( the highest mountain in Himachal Pradesh) of the Srikhand Range. You can observe a number of migratory birds here during the early twilight hours during migration season. The lake freezes during the winters thus providing ice-skating options on the lake during the winter months. There is a small waterfall nearby which according to local belief is a home of fairies mainly due to the fact that the water flows resemble milk gushing through the skies.

  • Nako Monastery

The Nako Monastery dates back to the 11th century, 1025 AD, and is a Tibetan-styled monastery, consisting of 4 large halls much similar to the Tabo Monastery. One of the huge halls has been named in honour of Rinchen Zangpo, who translated Buddhist scriptures from Sanskrit to the Tibetan language.  Sculptures of five Dhyani Buddhas made out of clay adorn the main hall where there are also many images and murals.

  • Padmasambhava Temple

It is believed that Padmasambhava visited Nako Lake and left a footprint recording his visit to the area. A shrine has been built around this footprint to commemorate this and there is also a statue of Padmasambhava above it in addition to murals.

  • Nako Chango Gompa

Chango Gompa lies 25 km away from the Nako monastery on the road from Spiti. It has a prayer wheel which is made of yak skin and is more than 500 years old and measures about 3.5 m (11 ft) in diameter.

  • Lipa Asrang Sanctuary

Lipa Asrang Sanctuary is around at a height of 4,000 to 5,022 m. The sanctuary is spread over an area of around 30.89 sq km. A variety of flora is found in this sanctuary which includes dry coniferous forest, dry alpine scrub, dwarf juniper scrub, and dry broad leaves.

The most commonly found animals in this sanctuary are Yak, Leopard, Ibex, Goral, Brown Bear, Blue Sheep, Himalayan Black Bear, and Musk Deer. Tourists are not allowed to enter this sanctuary without prior permission to explore the sanctuary.

  • Trails around Nako

There are easy trails around the village which are mostly used by the shepherd to traverse to different surrounding villages, including Chango, Hango and Tashigang Village. These pleasant walking trails are a wonderful way to explore the surrounding mountains. If you move ahead of the lake there is a small trekking zone. From here you get a beautiful bird’ s-eye view of the lake and the village.

  • Tashigang Village

About 12 km away lies the quaint village of Tashigang in Spiti Valley. Known to be the highest polling station in the world, it has only 6 families living here. Go back in time and soak in some fresh mountain air amidst the snow-capped mountains and pristine lake.

  • Tabo Village

Tabo is a small town in the Lahaul and Spiti district on the banks of the Spiti River in Himachal Pradesh, India. The town lies on the road between Rekong Peo and Kaza, the sub-divisional headquarters of Spiti Valley. The town is well known for its Buddhist monastery which, according to legend, is said to be over a thousand years old. The Dalai Lama has expressed his desire to retire in Tabo since he proclaimed that the Tabo Monastery is one of the holiest.


Best Time to visit Nako Village

Summer months are the ideal time to visit Spiti Valley in general. August/ September is the harvest season for apples with the entire village turning into autumn colours of fertility and abundance. 

All roads are opened up and connected and there is no road closure due to snow

How to reach Nako Village

There are two ways that Nako can be reached. The first and the easiest way is via Shimla and the second route is via Manali.

  • Via Shimla: Delhi – Chandigarh – Shimla – Narkanda – Rampur – Pooh – Nako
  • Via Manali: Delhi – Chandigarh – Manali – Rohtang Pass – Gramphoo – Batal – Kunzum Pass – Kaza – Dhankar – Tabo – Nako

Delhi to Nako Village

The road via Shimla is 650 Km whereas, via Manali, it is about 850 Km. From Delhi, via both sides, however, it is a journey of around 3 days.

By Air

The nearest airport to Nako is in Shimla which is at a distance of 312 Kms. From the airport itself, you can hire a cab to drop you at Nako Village. Or you can board a bus from Shimla and reach Nako via Reckong Peo.

Other than Shimla, the next best option is Chandigarh Airport which is a major airport and well connected to the rest of the country.

By Train

The nearest railway station is also in Shimla but it is only connected by the famous Kalka Shimla Toy Train. After Shimla, the next major railway station is in Chandigarh.

How can tourists reach Nako Village?

Nako Village is well connected by road via Shimla and Chandigarh. You can either reach Nako Village by road either by hiring a car or self-drive. Or you can board a bus via Reckong Peo from Shimla Bus Stand.

Is Nako Village a family holiday destination?

Yes, Nako Village can be a great family vacation destination along with many other villages in Spiti Valley.

How can I reach Nako Village from the nearest town or city?

The nearest town or city is Shimla in Himachal Pradesh which is well connected to all major cities in India via Air and Train.

Are there any historical sites or monuments to explore in Nako Village?

Yes, the Nako Lake, Nako Monastery, Chango Gompa, etc are some of the historical sites to explore in Nako Village.

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