A road trip to Leh Ladakh is a dream of every travel lover and remains in the bucket list of all adventure enthusiasts. The natural beauty of Ladakh makes this road journey truly scenic. Along with it, the amazing altitude of these highest motorable roads of the world adds a thrill into the whole trip!
The panoramas of beautiful monasteries, glimmering blue lakes, ice-covered mountains, twinkling starts and fascinating rainbows are what makes Leh Ladakh tourism so special! These heavenly paths attract bikers as well as tourists who want to cover this distance with their cars.
Well, if you are also thinking to embark on this totally intoxicating, scenic and spectacular journey, then you should know the things which we are going to talk about now. Yes, the important things that anyone should keep in mind before planning a road trip to Ladakh.
Usually, people search for the beautiful spots that they will see on this road trip, but they forget to search for essential things to keep in mind due to their excitement. Well, going on this thrilling trip without any proper knowledge can be really risky.
Worry not; we covered it for you. Let’s read the important things to remember before planning a Ladakh road trip.
- The Routes:
As you are going to travel on your own, so you should check all the possible routes to reach your destination; which is Ladakh. Don’t think of relying on Google Maps because it sometimes shows the longest or impractical routes.
To reach Leh, there are two main routes i.e. Jammu – Srinagar – Leh highway and Manali – Leh highway. Both of the routes are extremely panoramic, and you should take any of the above routes while going and another one while returning.
It will help you in seeing both the routes in one trip. We will suggest you should take the first route while going and the second one while returning because the ascent is quite gradual in the first route that will help you in acclimatizing.
2. The Best Time to Plan the Road Trip:
You should know the season which is best to plan a road trip to Ladakh. It is essential because, in some seasons, the roads leading to Ladakh becomes dangerous due to heavy rain, landslides and bad weather.
Travelling in these particular months would be risky, and you will find more traffic than usual due to the bad conditions of roads. The roads to Leh Ladakh are open only for 6 months in a year. These months are from May to October or November.
Now, among these, the best months to plan your road trip are June or September. Yes, because travelling to Ladakh in monsoon or winter can be tricky. Plan your trip accordingly.
3. Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS) can be a Real Trouble:
Mountain sickness is a condition which people experience while travelling to higher altitudes. We can’t predict how our body will react to the new altitude because some really fit people also experience AMS symptoms while travelling to the mountains. On the other hand, some people rarely feel anything different on such trips.
It happens because everyone’s body reacts differently to different altitudes. So, you should never neglect AMS while going to such a high location like Ladakh. To avoid AMS, you need to be properly hydrated during your trip.
Also, you should give your body a little bit of time to acclimatize by stopping at low altitude places first. This helps your body to familiarize with the new altitude conditions, and then, it can gradually adapt to the changes. You should also keep AMS medicines like Diamox with you to tackle this sickness.
4. Phone Connectivity is Very Low at these Paths:
Be ready to savour the natural views to the fullest as you won’t get a chance to stare at your phone screens on this trip. Three-forth part of your road trip won’t have any phone connectivity. It’s a good thing as well as a bad one.
The advantage of low phone connectivity is that you won’t be getting any calls from your workplace or anyone won’t be able to disturb you on this serene road trip. The disadvantage is that you won’t be able to contact your family, friends or relatives in case of any emergency. In addition, you can’t surf the internet.
It means that you should pack everything necessary with you like the tools to fix your vehicle in case of emergency, an offline route map, puncture repair kits etc. Tell your family and loved ones about this thing in advance so that they won’t be worried if they can’t contact you.
5. Less Availability of Medical Facilities:
If you are feeling unwell or even a little bit low before this trip, then you should take it really seriously. Yes, because the roads of Ladakh are usually secluded with very little facilities. Medical facilities will be more than a day away from you on these roads.
It means that you won’t be able to find any doctor or chemist immediately in case of any health-related issue. So, the best thing is to start the trip only when you are physically fit and well.
In addition, you should always keep a basic first aid kit with all the essential medicines in your vehicle so that you can get the help of it in need. Forgetting anything could turn out a big problem in the isolated mountainous routes leading to Ladakh.
6. Roads are Very Risky:
This is the last, but the main thing which you should keep in your mind. The roads of Ladakh are narrow, steep, curvy and risky. It means that you shouldn’t try any type of stunts on this road trip.
You should consider driving only if you possess very good driving skills. Otherwise, don’t do it as it can be fatal. Don’t drink and drive here. Avoid any distractions and try to be as cautious as possible while driving to have a safe trip.