Leh Ladakh and bike trips are inseparable entities and it won’t be wrong to say that most people traverse to the land of high passes due to the same reason. Bike trips to Leh Ladakh are not only intriguing but highly daunting. People love to traverse through challenging passes and high-altitude motorable roads. Some of the world’s highest motorable roads (including the highest Umling La Pass) are located in Ladakh itself. All of this with adverse road conditions spikes up the thrill in the biker’s nerves.
Although all the attractions of Leh Ladakh are easily accessible on the bike, there are some that have mind-blowing routes. And is that not what bikers long for while visiting here. The number of places to visit in Leh Ladakh on the bike are too many but we have created a much more comprehensive version of it. So, let’s start:
Here is the list of the best places to visit in Leh Ladakh during a bike trip.
1. Pangong Tso
- Pangong Tso is approximately 223 km from the capital city of Ladakh- Leh offering an adrenaline-rushing motorbike trip.
- The initial road condition to Pangong is quite smooth and wide.
- You will be crossing Wari La which is another daunting pass and you will be enjoying your bike ride at this patch of land.
- From there you will be heading towards Chang La which is another high-altitude pass of Ladakh and one that falls on your way to Pangong Tso.
- The amazing view of Pangong Tso becomes so much better with the water crossing that happens to be the last hurdle for you.
- Around the lake, you will get a good, well-maintained road throughout the way.
- Pangong Tso is an alpine lake that is situated at an altitude of 4225 m above sea level and a very alluring attraction too.
2. Khardung La Pass
- One of the highest motorable roads in the world is the mighty Khardung La.
- It is approximately 40 km from Leh and most of this stretch is highly challenging.
- The road from Leh to South Pullu is good enough and after that, you will have to ride through the challenging roads.
- Khardung La stands at an altitude of 5359 m above sea level which is an astonishing altitude.
- This mountain pass offers a thrilling ride to avid adventurers or motorbike riders.
- It is also the gateway to Shyok and Nubra Valley because you will have to cross this pass to reach the valleys.
3. Namgyal Tsemo Gompa
- Namgyal Tsemo Gompa is another great attraction of Leh Ladakh and one where motorcycle riders would enjoy visiting.
- Located in the Leh district, this monastery was founded in 1430 and has been an interesting place since the beginning.
- The gompa is a mere 5 km from Leh city on the Khardung La road but the road is partially well-maintained. Moreover, to reach the gompa you will have to take a trek as well.
- This monastery is a religious place that has a high significance even when it comes to knowing about the history of Ladakh.
- Namgyal Tsemo Gompa has a 3-story high Maitreya Buddha statue made of gold. There are multiple ancient manuscripts as well as frescoes housed near the Tsemo Castle.
4. Hemis Monastery
- Hemis Monastery is another attraction that offers a great biking trail to visitors.
- The monastery is situated approximately 36 km away from Leh city if you choose to take the Stakna Road.
- Whereas if you take the Thiksey route, the distance to cover will be 41 km.
- What makes the route challenging is not the dusty road but the double water-logging that you will be crossing through the route.
- This monastery is one of the best Himalayan monasteries in the Drukpa Lineage.
- The monastery was re-established in 1672 by Ladakhi king Sengge Namgyal.
- This monastery has a long and strong history which is the major reason why a lot of people try to visit here for a longer duration. If you are one of the explorers for a person who loves knowing the history of a place or a monument then visiting this monastery will be worth each second of yours.
- The monastery was re-established in 1672 by Ladakhi king Sengge Namgyal and a part of the entire place is still a museum where other part is just a barren place.
5. Zanskar Valley
- Zanskar Valley is approximately 464 km from Leh and it is a part of the Kargil District in the UT of Ladakh.
- The natural beauty of the Zanskar Valley is something that will give you a great time throughout the road trip.
- Enjoy the complete bike trip to Zanskar Valley with the adventurous roads making it even more daunting for you.
- While visiting Zanskar, you also get to enjoy river rafting, trekking, sightseeing, photography, and a lot of other constants that are available throughout Ladakh.
- So, put on your hiking shoes and go for a long journey to this valley. Do not forget to keep enough water in your backpack.
6. Tso Moriri Lake
- Tso Moriri Lake is approximately 260 km from Leh city and is on an adrenaline-rushing route that will give you a great time.
- The lake itself is an alpine lake standing 4522 m above sea level.
- The entire stretch is going to be challenging and you will be riding for approximately 9 hours.
- The beauty of the lake is spell-binding and alluring giving a chance to the visitors to enjoy their time in pristine areas.
- Tso Moriri lake is a protected area of Ladakh and you will get a few accommodations near the lake.
7. Royal Leh Palace
The Royal Leh Palace is a 17th-century palace located in Leh, Ladakh. It was built by King Sengge Namgyal and offers stunning views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. Today, it serves as a museum showcasing the history and culture of Ladakh.
- This royal palace was built in the 17th century by King Sengge Namgyal and served as the royal residence for the Namgyal dynasty of Ladakh for centuries.
- The palace is a beautiful example of medieval Tibetan architecture, with its nine-storied structure built of stone, wood, and mud bricks.
- The palace is adorned with intricate artwork and murals, showcasing the rich cultural heritage of Ladakh.
- The palace is perched on a hill overlooking the town of Leh, offering stunning panoramic views of the surrounding mountains and valleys.
- Today, the palace serves as a museum, showcasing the history and culture of Ladakh.
- Visitors can explore the palace’s many rooms and exhibits, including the royal throne room, the Namgyal dynasty’s artifacts, and the traditional clothing and jewelry of the Ladakhi people.
- The palace is also the site of many cultural festivals and events throughout the year, including the annual Ladakh Festival and the Hemis Festival.
8. Tso Kar
Tso Kar is a stunning high-altitude lake located in the Changthang plateau of Ladakh. And undoubtedly one of the finest attractions to visit on your bike. The lake’s crystal-clear waters, surrounded by snow-capped mountains and unique wildlife, make for a breathtakingly beautiful sight.
- Tso Kar is located in the remote Changthang plateau of Ladakh, at an altitude of over 4,500 meters. The lake is surrounded by stunning snow-capped mountains, making it a must-visit destination for nature lovers.
- The area around Tso Kar is home to a number of unique and rare species of wildlife, including the Tibetan wild ass (kiang), Tibetan wolf, and Tibetan sand fox.
- It is also a breeding ground for migratory birds such as the bar-headed goose and the brown-headed gull.
- This lake is surrounded by vast salt pans that are used by the local Changpa nomads for salt production.
- Visitors can witness the traditional salt-making process and learn about the Changpa way of life.
- The lake is a popular destination for trekking and hiking, with several scenic trekking routes in the surrounding mountains. Visitors can enjoy stunning views of the lake and the surrounding landscapes while on these treks.
- Tso Kar is located near several traditional Ladakhi villages, where visitors can experience the unique culture and way of life of the Ladakhi people.
- The crystal-clear waters of Tso Kar, surrounded by snow-capped mountains and unique wildlife, make for a breathtakingly beautiful sight that is sure to leave a lasting impression on any visitor.
Now, this is a shortlist of some routes that can give you jolts throughout the riding trip. Once you start on your journey, there are so many things that will come your way. So, while you are preparing your itinerary for your adventurous bike trip to Leh Ladakh, then do include all these places in it. You won’t be in disarray at all.
But rest assured that this journey to the highest altitude destination in India will be a rollercoaster ride for you. Where a lot of people enjoy the thrill and adventure it throws at them, others laugh to enjoy the beauty.