Jammu and Kashmir State of India is a big storehouse of incredible and awesome natural attractions like Pangong Lake. Most of the tourists know very few places in Kashmir because of popularity. All the guided tours to Kashmir begin in Srinagar, the capital of J&K and ends at Srinagar.
What if I tell you that you need a full 30 tourist days to see the other parts of Kashmir, especially the Ladakh region?
Some of the stunning natural wonders of Ladakh region are:
- Karakoram Mountain range covering three countries( India, Pakistan, China)
- Several alpine lakes
- Vast tracts of wilderness
- Natural hot water springs
- Beautiful avifauna
- Monasteries that are located in the high-reach lofts in the sky
This blog post will act as a guide to see the Pangong Lake, one of the alpine lakes of India and the nearly isolated Nubra valley. Both of our tourist attractions are located in Ladakh, part of Jammu and Kashmir.
How to reach Nubra Valley or Pangong Lake?
The only way to go to Pangong Lake or Nubra Valley is to reach Leh first. It is the capital of Ladakh region. Leh can be reached by flights from almost all major cities of India. The flight duration varies depending on your departing city.
Once you reach Leh, the only way to explore the natural wonders of this rugged, unfriendly, and high-altitude terrain is to go by car.
From Lah, the Nubra Valley is 5 hours driving distance away.
First, let us get to know about the beautiful Pangong Lake which is locally called “Pangong Tso” in Ladakh. The word ‘tso’ means lake.
Geographically, the Pangong Lake is classified as an endorheic lake which means its water doesn’t drain into other water bodies.
In spite of being fed by rainwater and melting glaciers, its water is saline in nature.
The Pangong Lake situated at a height of a whopping 14000 feet approximately! Imagine you traveling to such great heights to set your eyes on this beautiful lake.
The Pangong Lake is 5 km in width but its length is 134 km! OMG! That must be a pretty long area that urges hikers to begin their long nature walk along the shores of the Pangong Lake.
Because of its length, the Pangong Lake spreads into bordering China! Yes, it is China that claims 60% of the lake’s area (700 sq.km total surface area)
Before you even plan a trip to see the Pangong Tso, please note that the lake is open to tourists only from May to September. Then, the lake freezes and so as the road and the entire region of Ladakh.
Avifauna in the vicinity of Pangong Lake.
There are records of spotting migratory seagulls and brahminy ducks near the Pangong Lake. The rare bar-headed goose also spotted during summer.
Our next place of interest in the Ladakh region is the Nubra Valley. I am sure you are hearing it for the first time. It is a district of Ladakh and has its capital at Diskit.
Reaching the Nubra Valley
As I mentioned earlier, anything beyond Leh is reached only by car. The Nubra Valley is located at a distance of 150 km from Leh.
Birds of Nubra Valley.
Nubra valley is a wonderful bird watching spot. You can identify quite a lot of birds, some of them are:
- Tibetan Lark
- White-browed Tit-warbler
- Northern Pintail
- Ruddy Shelduck
- Green Sandpiper
Resorts in Nubra Valley
The availability of a handful of resorts and hotels mean it is a convenient place for bird watchers.
Two gorgeous rivers named Siachen river and the Shyok river flow through the Nubra Valley..
Organized jeep safari tour to Nubra Valley
The Leh region is quite unfriendly to new travelers. Unless you buy an organized and guided jeep safari package, you are likely to get stuck in the vast wilderness.
In addition, you need onsite help to visit remotely tucked away Buddhist monasteries.
Buy yourself a seat for the Pangong Lake Jeep Safari Tour. It is a week-long expedition that is thoughtfully arranged by Trekking India. I have given the link below.
What can you see and do in your seven-day jeep safari to tour the Pangong Lake and Nubra Valley?
- Scenic Himalayan terrain
- Bumpy Bactrian camel ride through vast valley passing the sand dunes
- See the green barley fields
- Go through the Khardung La Pass and the Changla Pass
- Visit several monasteries such as Diskit Monastery and Thiksey Monastery
- See the Shey Palace and the Leh Palace
Food in Ladakh region:
I have come to the important part of the tour to Pangong Lake and Nubra Valley in Ladakh. You must know the names of some of the foods that you will be served during 7 days jeep safari in Nubra Valley.
- Momos- this dish is widely available in the Himalayan towns and villages. It served hot.
- Dumpling Soup. This is known as Chutagi locally.
- Butter tea that is mentioned in the menu of the small food kiosks as Gur Gur cha.
- Paba is a flatbread made of barley
- Thukpa-a soup topped with noodles.
So, how do you like to plan your jeep safari tour in the Nubra Valley? When you make it, share your experiences in the comment section.