Ladakh to Kashmir Ride
Day 1: Rendezvous at the group hotel in Delhi. Transfers from Delhi Airport to the hotel are provided on this day. KE Land Only package services begin with lunch.
Day 2: An early start for the return to the Domestic Terminal of Delhi Airport, where we take the dramatic flight over the Indian Himalaya to Leh, in the district of Ladakh. Afternoon at leisure and overnight at a Leh hotel.
Day 3: After a leisurely morning in Leh, we have an afternoon of exploration and acclimatisation, visiting the nearby monasteries of Thikse and Shey. We spend a second night at our Leh hotel.
Day 4: Today, we test our bikes and ourselves, with a morning's ride out on quiet roads and tracks, across the valley to the west of Leh and to the Shanti Stupa. After admiring the views southwards to Stok Kangri, we return to spend another night in Leh.
Day 5: Our journey begins with a pleasant ride to Alchi, a sleepy village and monastery situated on the bank of Indus River. At Nimo, we can look south into the impressive gorge of the Zanskar River. Overnight at a hotel. Ride distance 60 km (38 miles).
Day 6: Today's ride to Lamayuru (3500m) takes us through an arid landscape, with peaks rising up on both sides of the road. In the evening, we can visit Lamayuru Gompa, hidden within the folds of its surrounding mountains. Overnight at a guesthhouse. Ride distance 65 km (41 miles).
Day 7: We have a challenging start to the day, as we climb to cross the Fotu La (4108m). Later in the day, we cross a second pass, the Namika La, before dropping down to Mulbekh, where our accommodation is in a basic guesthouse or camping. Ride distance 70 km (44 miles).
Day 8: An easier day, as we continue our ride westwards to Kargil (2675m), the second largest town in the region, with 10,000 inhabitants. Formerly an important trading post on the 'Silk Road', Kargil has a pleasant riverside location and a single market street. Overnight in a hotel. Ride distance 45 km (28 miles).
Day 9: Today's ride follows a river valley, with irrigated fields and overshadowing peaks, to Drass (3230m). Known as the 'Gateway to Ladakh' and surrounded by ranges that rise to 6000 metres, Drass is one of the coldest places on earth during the winter. Overnight in a basic hotel. Ride distance 56 km (35 miles).
Day 10: An exciting day, as we traverse the Zoji La (3528m) on a road cut into the mountainside in places. Beyond, the pass, the landscape becomes more verdant, with forest and grassy slopes. Overnight at a hotel in Sonamarg. Ride distance 65 km (41 miles).
Day 11: A day at Sonamarg, with the option to take it easy or to do a spot of off-road biking up to the Thajawas Glacier, with a picnic lunch beside a mountain stream. We spend a second night at the hotel in Sonamarg. Ride distance (optional) 8 km (5 miles).
Day 12: After early breakfast, we ride beside a mountain torrent, through dense forest, then farmland and orchards to the town of Srinagar. Arriving in the early afternoon, we board our houseboat accommodation for a 2-night stay. Ride distance 80 km (50 miles).
Day 13: A day to explore Srinagar, sightseeing by shikara (traditional boat) on the lake. Great for birdwatchers. Returning to the houseboat for lunch, we then visit the Shankarachayara Temple and the Mughal gardens of Nishat and Shalimar. Overnight in our houseboat.
Day 14: The morning is free to relax and do some last-minute souvenir buying. We then transfer to the airport for the return flight to Delhi. Overnight at a Delhi hotel.
Day 15: KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. Delhi Airport transfers are provided on this day.