Manali – Leh travel guide

After my trip last year, a lot of people have been asking me time and again about the trip and for some tips on this route.

The Manali to Leh road route is considered by many to be the greatest and arguably the toughest motorcycling road in the world. Every year, dozens of bikers from all over the world ride over this road, which crosses over some of the highest mountain passes of the world. The road is open from the end of May to about October, give or take a few weeks. The exact timings are dictated by the amount of snowfall that the passes recieve each year. This road is maintained by the Indian Army and is of strategic importance and so the Army takes all pains to ensure that for the few summer months, the road is never closed for more than a day or two, even if the weather is particularly bad.

The Route: Manali – Rohtang Pass – Tandi – Keylong – Jispa – ZingZing Bar – Baralacha La (Pass) – Bharatpur – SarchuGhata loops – Nakee La – LachLung La – Pang – More PlainsTanglang La – Upshi – Karu – Leh


You can never plan enough to ride on this highway. There are just too many unknowns. Even if everything else is all hunky dory, the weather can play spoilsport anytime. The only way to ride on this route is to keep an open mind and be open to exploring new options.

The Manali-Leh highway is full of bad roads, water crossings, glaciers (if you’re lucky) and crosses over some of the world’s highest passes and such the journey is highly unpredictable. Be prepared for uncertainties like inclemental weather, tyre punctures and any other mechanical problems with your vehicle. Carry any spares you think your vehicle might need and prepare for the worst.

Plan to take atleast three days to complete the journey although some people do the entire stretch in two days, it doesn’t make sense to rush up. The real fun is in the journey and not the destination.


Manali is the biggest town that you’ll hit on this highway and as such this should be your base if you’re coming from Delhi or any other part of the country. It is a very popular hill station and you can get fuel, food, accessories for your bike, clothes and just about anything imaginable in Manali. Also, it’d be advisable to stop for a night at Manali to acclimatize to the altitude.

Top up the fuel tank of your vehicle the night before you have to leave as you’ll be able to make an early start from Manali the next day, leaving the hordes of summer tourists behind. Rohtan Jot (Rohtang La) pass is a big attraction and practically all tourists who come to Manali visit it and leaving late will invariably mean ending up in a big traffic Jam (probably the world’s highest traffic jam) going up towards Rohtang.

Once you’ve crossed Rohtang, the road winds its way down to Tandi, which is the last village with a petrol pump before Leh. You should tank up here and also carry atleast 5 litres of extra fuel with you.

About 7 kms from Tandi is Keylong which is the only major town on the Manali-Leh highway. There are proper hotels, including an HPTDC hotel at Keylong and the town is at a lower height than Manali. If you want to break your journey further, you can stop here for the night, although there is not much to see in this sleepy town so I’d advise to carry on and probably stop here on your way back, if you’re using the same road.

Day one

For the first day you can break your journey at either Jispa or Darcha. Jispa has atleast one luxury hotel. Darcha is a temporary tented accomodation run by some enterprising locals. Of the two, Darcha is definitely the more enticing with the Bhaga river for company.

Day 2

This is the most amazing day of the ride. And as such it’d be advisable to stop at Sarchu, just about 120 kms from Darcha, instead of hurrying down the road to Pang.

You will be crossing the Baralacha La pass at 16,500 ft to reach Sarchu. At the foot of the pass is a collection of tents/dhabas at a place called Bharatpur, which is another place you can think of for stopping, but it’d be advisable to cover some more distance since Sarchu is just another 40kms from Bharatpur.

Each turn and each hairpin bend will offer new vistas. Make sure you take enough time admiring the rugged terrain. This road is as much a test of the man as the machine, so don’t even try and push the bike. Ride slow and steady and take as many photo stops as you can.

Sarchu is another temporary collection of tents, slightly more luxurious than the ones at Darcha.

The campsite is situated on the side of the Sarchu plains and because of the location, high winds are the norm. Be prepared for the cold and doing your morning duties out in the open, unless you stay at one of the costlier camps, which usually have a Loo tent.

A lot of travellers cross Sarchu and head over to Pang to stay for the night but that is not recommended. Pang is at a much higher altitude than Sarchu and to reach there you have to cross two more high altitude passes, Nakee La and Lachlung La. Even if you haven’t had a single attach of AMS till now, staying at Pang is a sure way of inducing mountain sickness.

Day 3

Right after Sarchu, you’ll be riding over the Gatta (ghatta/ghata/Gatha) loops, a series of 21 hairpin bends that’ll take you 1500 ft higher to the first pass of the day, Lachung La. Cross over the Lachung La and Nakee La passes and reach Pang for an early lunch.

Pang is at the base of a huge plateue and as soon as you get out of Pang, a short climb of about a kilometer or two will get you to More plains. Almost 40 kms of plain and barren land at over 16000 ft. The more plains are a sight to behold.

Right after the more plains, the climb for Tanglang La begins. Tanglang La is the second highest motorable pass in the world at 17, 582 ft.

Tanglang La is the last pass on the Manali Leh highway and after this the road is relatively straight and well tarred all the way to Leh. Picturesque villages, beautiful gompas and the constant company of a stream or two are the memorable parts of the last few miles of this trip.

The Manali – Leh trip can be easily done in three days and infact, take more time if you have the luxury. The friendly nature of the locals, the rugged beauty of the terrain are just some of the memories to take back from this trip and make sure you have enough time on hand to really have fun.

AMS – Acute mountain sickness

Wikipedia explains it much better than I ever can. I just have one thing to add: AMS can be extremely dangerous and do not ignore it. The only way to overcome AMS is to acclimatize well. And for that the rule of thumb is to ride high and sleep low. That is why Sarchu is recommended over Pang as a stop for the night, even though the distance from Darcha to Pang is easily doable in a day. Drinks lots of water and eat food on time even if you’re not hungry. Also keep a stock of chocolates, glucose or other high energy food with you.

Stuff to carry

This depends on person to person, but apart from the usual, make sure you have all necessary spares for your vehicle with you. If you’re travelling in a group, it makes sense to carry just one foot/electrical pump, but atleast make sure you have one spare tube each as well as cables for the accelerator and clutch. For people travelling by cars/SUVs, apart from carrying fuel, carry lots of water and any other necessary spares with you.

Also, keep some vaseline and sun screen handy since at that altitude you will most likely need oodles of both.

Join the Conversation


  1. Good travelogue , I enjoyed reviving last years memories from the same route via Spiti. Going that way gives a lot more acclimatization time than the straight Manali-Leh run. Personally I would never go for a night at 4000+ within a day from Manali, partly because I´ve sen a fellow traveller going unconscious on a previous trip.

    A note on altitudes : Keylong is one thousand meters higher than Manali(3100), not lower. Sarchu is at 4253(i.e. same as Chandra Tal) and Pang at 4500.

  2. @ Vistet: Thanks for visiting and glad you liked the travelogue. You’re correct about Keylong being higher than Manali. Don’t know what was I thinking when I wrote that 🙂

  3. @Katya: Thanks. I’d be writing some more mini guides like this one soon. Please be sure to keep checking back 🙂

  4. Hello,I feel must share my experience of the Manlali Leh trip we four made in a car ( Maruti Esteem< Yes that is right) last June. I am now 69 yrs old( sixtynine) and my friend also same age and my friends daughter andher driver much younger than the three of us (from Uttaranchal) undertook this trip from Delhi. Our first stop was Mandi in himachal Pradesh. Then we went over Rohtang to Keylong straight and stayed there for 2 beautiful days and nights. This is where we experienced a suddden TOOFAN as the locals called it, which actually is a sfast, unexpected Mountain storm very charecteristic of this region. The mountains sent an alarm bell to tell us not to stay overnight anywhere in between Keylong Na Leh.
    We took much longer( Four hours?) than the jeeps for abvious reasons in the Esteem. many truck drivers were amused to see us rolling by in the esteem, but they were helpful when we needed. No tyre problems or anything like that but we got stuck in a summer stream once and had to be pulled out.A Bolero and truck also got stuck in the same place. Thanks to our skilful drivers, even my friendds daughter drove quite a bit on this raod -we made it in one piece and more than anything we were worried if our Esteem could make the journey. Yes it did and beautifully so. For us two senior citizens the ride was so luxurious our backs did not realise that we had made this trip after reaching Leh.
    Ony if we were less concerned about the car, we would have enjoyed it so much better. At Tanglang La we took a picture, and hurried down as we felt dizzy. ( I am talking for the two older members)
    We stayed inside the hotel room for 24 hours in Leh and went by car to the museum next day. having a car at our disposal made all the difference. We walked very less unless we had to. We came back through Alchi and Lamayuru (very beutiful indeed), Dras ( Tiger hill fame, where we stayed for a night ) to Srinagar and back. The Vishnu Dhbha Parothas outside pathankote is still fresh in my mind.
    I have seen small children too on this trip. We were not unduly wooried about Altitude sickness as we had gone to Char dham trip earlier and no problem at all at that time.
    Many elderly people are put off by such road trips. But it is worth going to the heart of Himalays once at least in our life time. Only we have the Himalayas at our doorstep!!
    have a nice journey, Indira Murthy from bangalore

  5. Hey thank you all,

    Well reading this.. I feel like going to this place.But I am confused about 1 thing

    Would it be better if we travel by bus or car or train or should we hire a car .We would be around 6 people. all age between 20-22. Aling from mumbai.

    Resopnse would be helpful.


  6. @Dhruv: I’d suggest that you reach Delhi from Mumbai by car or by air. From Delhi you can take a bus to Manali and then hire a cab going to Leh. It isn’t as much fun as driving down yourself but that’s upto you.

  7. sharminder,

    thanks for the informative post man. My friends and I are planning a trip to Leh, two weeks from now. We are taking the delhi-manali bus, manali-leh cab route.

    While we have answers to some questions, there are still a lot of unanswered questions .. do you think I could email you or perhaps, call you, to discuss a few?

    thanks much in advance,

  8. Pingback: upshi
  9. gGood Info. !!
    What will be the total cost for bike ride..

    are the bikes available in manali of good quality .!!

    1. We had our own bikes when we went and including acco/food/fuel everything was under 20k as far as I remember. As far as the quality of bikes is concerned, you’ll have to check that on your own. These bikes are usually old and not very well maintained but if you can search a bit you might be able to get something decent. But, as for everything else, you get what you pay for !

  10. hii, What would u suggest a bike ride or a car drive from manali to leh . Do you need any kind of permissions by the govt to ride the bikes out there.


    1. I’m a biker so bike is what I’d suggest. You don’t need any permissions to go from Manali to Leh.

  11. I am planning to go Leh on 7 days trip.
    We are 5 guys…can anyone tell how much the cab and bike rentals would cost , from Manali to Leh. ???

    1. I’m not sure about the rental rates ashish since we had our own bikes. But, should be something around 2-2.5k / day for a cab. I’d suggest you ask this same question at the forums. There are some guys there who’ve done the trip using both rental vehicles and personal vehicles so they should be able to give you a better idea.

  12. So glad I found this site! This is the most info I have been able to get my hands on so far! Do we need any kind of passes for Indians and/or foreigners in this trip? That’s the other thing I am lost on! Please help.


    1. Prathima, I don’t think foreigners need a permit specifically to go to Leh using this road. But, a permit is needed to visit some places around Leh and you’ll get those in Leh.

  13. Hi,

    This is such an amazing travelogue that one can really live his experience while reading it……

    But yes, me any my two frnds are planning for Del – Leh. (in alto)

    Would really appreciate if somebody guides whether it is a good option to drive all the way on Alto. Though we are doing many preparations for the trip….But my main concern is that whether this car will be able to do it to Leh or not…..We are increasing the ground clearance by inserting the “1” inch rubber bars(gutka) under the shockers…. dont really know if it is a wise move….but ya…will really make a slight difference…

    Also, If somebody can advise for good stoppage points after manali.


    1. Rohit,

      I know people who’ve done this route in a zen so the Alto can definitely do it. Though, I just came back from Leh about 15 days back and this year the roads are really bad, so you might want to think twice about taking your Alto over there.

      Carry appropriate spare parts. The gear box, clutch, brakes and the suspension are going to be abused a LOT.

      All the best

    1. You can’t travel on this road in December. The passes are all closed. The farthest you’ll be able to go is Keylong if you’re able to cross Rohtang

  14. The route will be closed now for sure… Just wanted to know, if I can go to Rohtang in Second week of March 2011. I am banking on the fact that there wasnt much of snowfall this winter…

    My friends were able to reach Rohtang Passin last week of December, last year. The pass was however closed from 1st January

    1. Second week of March should be fine but then again, this is the Rohtang pass and one can never say anything about it. You’ll have to confirm from someone at Manali if it’s open or not.

  15. I am willing to go up to keylong … There isnit continous snowfall this time around.. it happens for couple of days and its bright sunshine again…

    I am hoping … will give it a try

  16. Hi, we are planning a trip to leh from Delhi in a Scorpio hawk 2wd, we are 2adults and 3 children (age 4-11), is it okay for the kids for this journey and are there any mechanics/workshop on the way from manali to leh. Your info will help us a lot.

  17. hi we r planin a trip from manali to leh by rented bike, drop the bike in leh n take a flight back to is it possible to rent a bike in manali n drop it in leh. n can we find mechanics in manali to leh.

  18. @Sharninder , we are planning a trip to Leh this summer. We are a bunch of 6 people. We never drove on mountains before. Do you suggest that we take any special precaution or measures?

  19. Hey Lisa,

    On a trip like this you shall experience extreme heat and cold; you’ll get wet rain, and melting water crossings and have very dry skin from the cold harsh winds. So carry Sunscreen, cold cream and Lip balm.

    Also, carry some Diamox. It is used with varying success to speed up acclimatization. Those that are allergic to sulfa medication cannot use Diamox, should consult their doc. To avoid Acute Mountain Sickness drink lots and lots of water.

    Hope it helps!

  20. @Lisa: Kunika is right. Pack well, drive safe and hope that AMS doesn’t trouble you much.

    Apart from that, don’t rush through the trip and enjoy the sites. If you’re there only for 6 days, I’m assuming you’re driving to Leh and then flying back ? Take 3 days, atleast – if not 4, to reach Leh and then spend 2 days in/around Leh and then fly back. If you can, try going to Pangong Tso too, but it’ll be tight in 6 days.

  21. Thanks Sharninder & Kunika for the helpful advice…
    We have 9 days in hand and we are planning to drive back to Manali.
    I have been to Leh before but I flew from Chandigarh that time. This is my first time on a Bike. Have no idea if its very risky driving as we have no experience of driving on mountains.

  22. Sharninder, i am thinking of travelling to Leh from Manali in second week of May 2011. Would the passe be open at this time around. Secondly we will be around 7 people travelling in INNOVA including kids (13/8) and my parents who are above 70yrs old. Do you suggest it is a good thought to take them to such a height at this age or i shud avoid taking a risk. I am surely travelling to Manali from Mumbai w/o any second thought with suff halts. If your answer is yes, kindly advise me what are things that we shud be carrying along with us as neccesary for kids and elders including ladies. I am the only one who would be driving as no one else knows how to drive. Last year we had travelled to Kashmir in the same vehicle along with one of my cousin who was also in Innova. Please reply on sight as your feedback would be really helpful to me and i would love to visit this part of our country. What are the other places that one can see in H.P. and near LEH.


    J. Ahmed.

    1. Second week of May is looking unlikely right now. Last year the passes opened just for a little while in May and then opened again in mid june, so I’d suggest you make plans for mid June or later. The kids should be fine and I’ve seen older people travel to Leh but frankly it depends on their overall health. If they’re fit for their age, it shouldn’t be a problem. I’d suggest that you go via the Srinagar-Kargil-Leh route and come back via Manali because the Srinagar route is less taxing and you’d have more time for acclimatization.

      Carry plenty of warm clothes, spares for your vehicle and chocolates and glucose and since you’re travelling in a car, also have some food always on hand since food might be a problem with kids. Other than that, just have fun. Stop at Srinagar/Pahalgam/Gulmarg. Then at Dras/Kargil and then Leh with a stop at Lamayuru for sure.

  23. hi,
    firstly,amazing travelouge and very informative comments 🙂

    my friends and i (all 20 y.o) are planning to ride from manali to leh around march end.
    could you tell me the bike rental costs per day for the same.

  24. Hey, Sharminder, I need some help here. I’m planning to do Manali-Leh on 15th June for two weeks with my friend. Coming from Delhi. Two bikes, Enfield 350 and HH Hunk 150. I want to know whether the Hunk will be able to do it comfortably. Also r passes required to use the highway? And will staying in our own tents be feasible? We r planning to rent a 2 person tent. Or is it better to stay in the dhabha tents? Plus, also tell me which are the good detours on the way. Have heard that Spiti is nice.

    Kindly give me a detailed reply.

    Thank you.


    1. 15th June the roads should be open but please check before you leave. As for the hunk, being able to take on the Manali-Leh highway, sure. It can be done and people have done it before. It won’t have it as easy as the enfield but it shouldn’t be too much of a problem. no passes are required to use the highway. You only need passes if you plan to visit forward areas from Leh.

      While, you can stay in your tents and it would be quite an experience, I’d still suggest that you use the dhaba tents since they’re so much more comfortable. You don’t have to carry your tents, or quilts since it can get REALLY cold. And food is another problem that you might face. Why bother with all of that. If you like camping, do it closer to Manali or save it for the lower himalayas.

  25. We are 3 friends and planning to do it next year in suzuki gs150r and krizma. We will start from delhi and will be taking manali route. Can it be done with a tight budget of 10000rs per person? If not, what is the minimum amount for it, i know you have mentioned 15k but still can we do it with a 10k budget.

    1. The minimum budget depends on you. 10k means that you’ll have about Rs 750 to spend everyday. Petrol for the bike everday is going to take about 500 out of it. Even 2 meals and acco would come to be more than that. I think 10k is a pretty unrealistic budget. Kudos to you if you can manage in that.

  26. Thanks mate for your reply.
    And we are expert in managing tours at low budget 😉 Have done it many a times, but don’t think it would be a wise idea to tour a place like leh with a low budget. We are going to 15k increase it for our sake 😀

  27. hi sharninder..we are 6 friends all around 20 yrs… planing a visit to leh from delhi in first week of june in an innova..we shall be going by manali leh route ..could please advice us that wheather to go via that route in first week of june and could you please also suggest that where can we find if the roads will clear at that time??
    eagerly waiting for your reply!!!

    1. Keep a track of the route opening on forums like Last year the route hadn’t been cleared in first week of june so I’m not sure about this year also.

  28. hi

    we are planing to visit leh in month of may ie 15 or 17.will the roads from manali will be open.

    1. Well, it’s already 5th of 6th of May and I doubt the roads will be open by the 15th. You should, if you can, delay your trip by atleast a month.

  29. Hi,

    I just want to answer about the cab rates:
    When we went in 2009, the cabs from Leh to places like Nubra, Khardungla and Pangong lake was about 8000 rupees both ways. This is the reason why people share cabs out there. It still turns out to be 2000 per person with 4 people travelling. If there are many people, they can also book a mini van.

    There are local buses as well in Leh going to these places. We did take one from Leh to Pangong. The challenges:
    1) takes more than double the amount of time
    2) runs only on fixed days and not everyday
    3) since they are local buses, they are very crowded and uncomfortable. It is not advisable to travel standing or sitting on someone’s bad for several hours

  30. Hello we are travelling in mid june 2011 via manali to leh in a wagon r the car is in fit condition – can the car make it t Leh and back keeping in mind the rough roads.we have a six year old kid along with is it safe to take her? please advise

    1. The six year old should not have problems just take the usual precautions. Keep her warm and don’t let her exert too much. As far as the car is concerned, it’s obviously better to have a car with more ground clearance. The Wagon R can do the trip and I’ve heard of people doing it in Maruti Altos also but frankly I went again last year and remember the roads being really bad in parts, so I’m not sure how it’ll be this year. Try postponing your trip by a month or more so that the roads become ok by then. June is usually bad in terms of roads.

      The other advice I have is that please check your car thoroughly and the suspension etc should be in top shape. Keep all spares handy as after Manali you will only get proper service in Leh.

  31. Hi,

    I neded some help… We are a group of 4 friends… planning to go to Leh between July 2 to July 10th… We are planning to take a bike from Manali. I just wanted to know whether it is possible to do a bike trip and drop the bike off at Leh. Is such an arrangement possible.

    Please help



    1. you will have to ask around for Manali for that. I’m sure there must be some shops with a rent and drop arrangement for bikers like that. Only reason I don’t think shops in Manali might not offer this facility is because there aren’t too many tourists who come to Leh by air and then want to ride back.

  32. rohit their are some bike renters which provide this service.but the thing is they chrge too much for the same

  33. we are two frnd plan cover this highway on pulsar 180, owr bike is good, what is ur view for pulsar,,,,

    1. pulsar is as good as any other bike. The bike will not be a problem as long as the rider is up to it.

  34. we are plan mid in july if anyone intersed with me for leh then call me, 8146460005

  35. We are a group of 5 people all in around late 20s. We plan to travel to manali on 9th July and reach manali by 10th. On 11th Morning we plan to start from Manali to Leh.
    Was just quirious to know weather we should stop at Sarchu or Keylong and many of the websites says Sarshu could be more taxing due to AMS than keylong. but if we stay in keylong we travel very less in the first day compared to the sencond day. @ Sharninder what do you suggest?? we plan to reach leh on 12th evening. Further would it be a good time to visit Leh as I have heard all the passes have opened.

    We also are planning to carry our own tent of 6 pax capacity. Would you think this is a practical option?? We plan to fly back on 18th July early morning. Any other precautions you think could help us in this travel.

    1. If you don’t want to stay at Sarchu, you can stay at Jispa or Darcha also. Jispa has the last properly constructed hotel on the route. Carrying your tent is nice, but why bother ? Whatever you do, your tent will always be colder and less comfortable than the tents setup by locals. I’d suggest that you stay in them, if you don’t want to freeze at night 🙂

  36. Sharninder

    Thanks for the speedy reply….another question..can we stay one night in Pangong. Is there provision for a night stay?? I feel the place deserves more than an hour stay, which is the only time we would be able to stay if we do one day trip from Leh to Pangong and then back in the same day…..

    Also if we want to do bike safari from leh to to proceed for the same as we would need to hire bike from Leh only.

    We are planning to stay in shanti guest house in Changspa if you know this place. We are depending on the owned of the guest house who seems to be info bank as per wikipedia. Or should we do a local day out in bike rather than Khardongla.

  37. yes, there is tented acco available at Pangong Tso and you can stay there. As for the bike safari, it is possible to get bikes on hire from Leh itself.

    Also, since you’re staying at the Shanti Guest house, you don’t really need my help. The owner really is an encyclopaedia. He’ll be able to get you any info you want and arrange tours to any place.

  38. Hi I plan to visit leh via manali in august end or sept begining on bike. Is it the right time as I heard till sept the seaSON IS ON. Also which are the best scenic stops in between please advise. What is the budget I should have for a to and fro trip (8 – 9 days)…

  39. Siddharth,

    The season should be open august end, but it all depends on the weather at that time of the year.

    To be very frank, 8-9 days is not enough for this trip. It’ll take you atleast 4 days to reach Leh via Manali and coming back would be atleast 3 days, if not 4. That leaves a maximum of 1-2 days in/around Leh.

  40. Me and one of my friend are planning to visit leh in the 3rd week of august by maruti. We will start our journey from delhi. Can we rely on maruti alto?we have 8 days. is it enough?

    1. 8 days is a little too less for Leh and a Maruti Alto is also not a good car to do this trip. The roads are bad in places and it’ll be difficult to cross some of the passes in an Alto because of the low ground clearance and the small tires. Keep in mind the car will suffer a lot and you might have to get a new suspension or get even more parts changed. The power of the car is not the problem, but the Alto is a delicate car. I know people who’ve done this journey in an esteem also so it can be done but it won’t be easy.

  41. Hi, I am planning to visit Leh with my wife from 14th/15th Aug.We r planning to drive in our Scorpi. We plan to drive via Manali, one night stay at keylong, then Spend some 3/4 Days in Laeh/ Nubra Vally and come back via Kargil/Drass route. Please suggest if we can cover this route in 9 Days, as we plan to fly back from Srinanagr/Jammu to delhi.

  42. i have a new indica vista, plz tell me this car is perfect for manali to leh highway or not,

  43. We went on Alto last year…….. You have to be very careful about the ground clearance……… Rest depends on the weather……

  44. hello! thanks for this great travelogue, i look forward to reading more. my friend and i are going to leh in a few weeks. we have a flight that goes from delhi to leh. from my understanding it will be a harsh altitude change. we are thinking of heading immediately to a nearby down that’s further down leh right after we land to stay there for a few days to acclimatize, and then head back up to leh. do you think this is a good idea, and can you recommend where we should go from leh to acclimiatize?

    thanks! jessica

    1. I don’t think you need to go anywhere for acclimatizing. Just stay put in Leh and move around the local market and Leh palace etc. That is good enough.

  45. Hi, we are 4 friends driving from manali to leh on the 12th of Aug. We will be driving a scorpio. We would start on the 12th and spend the night at Jispa and the next day 13th head straight from there to Leh.
    I need to ask you if it is possible to cover this route in 2 days and also we will be driving ourselves though we are no expert mountain i hope it wont be much of a hassle.

    1. Yes, you can cover this route in 2 days but what’ll be the fun in that ? Why not spend one more day and enjoy the drive ?

  46. dear monk
    i want to join this journy with u, if u confornt then plz call me 08146460005,
    i am form punjab

  47. great travelogue. I have done the manali-leh-manali and manali-leh-srinagar routes 3 times,will be going there again in a couple of weeks. We are always on Bullet motorcycles becos the higher the CC the better. Even a 500cc bullet makes a lot of difference over a 350 cc bullet bike.

  48. Dear Sir ,
    We are 8 guys planning for a road trip , the plan is take rented bikes from dehli , dehli to manila by bike and manila to leh by bike i would like get the feed back the safetly things to be carried … and then stay .as we planning to go in Royal Enfield 350 , is 7 days to be engouh to cover all these place Route in mind Delhi – manila – leh – sringar – Delhi

    1. Delhi – Manila (Manilla? Philipines?) is going to take a while 🙂

      It’s not impossible to cover the Delhi-Leh-Srinagar-Delhi route in 7 days but the question is, why would you want to ? I’d suggest stay for atleast a few days in Leh and Srinagar and explore the places. Plan for a 14 day trip and you should be fine.

  49. hey friend,
    u jus amazed me ….before reading this i was planning to by air , bt now i`ll choose your way. we are planning to go in may end. so please tell me how many days are sufficient for delhi-leh-srinagar-delhi trip by a hired taxi car …..cauz now a days roads are in better condition as there is NH1

    1. I’m not sure if the route will be open in May end, but you need atleast 2 days for Manali to Leh, preferably 3.

  50. Hello Sharninder

    Nice to read your travelogue

    we, two families (2 adults and 2 kids each) are planning to travel to Leh from Ludhiana by rented Innova/Scorpio or something like that.

    Is it possible to cover the distance in 2 days (From Manali).

    We are planning to cover the return trip by air. Any ideas?

    Thanks in Advance


    1. two days should be possible but why hurry? Spend a day more on the journey and spend a day less in Leh.

  51. Hi,

    Planning a Trip to Leh From Jammu – Manali – Leh.

    Any guy want to join our Group may contact me at 08800197458 or 07355469248.

    Statutory Compliance : Should own Bullet only.

  52. Thanks a lot Sharninder for your Tips & Advice as it’s really helpful for the first time traveler.
    My Plan:-
    • 29th Jun 12 Morning will be in Manali full day will look out for good available bikes in Manali.
    • 30th Jun 12 Early morning will leave from Manali to Sarchu (Night stay at Sarchu)
    • 1st July 12 Sarch to Leh. (5th July Back on Bike)
    I would like to know your Advice on Following Points.
    • As I am traveling by bike and the Accessories like Puncher Kit, Tube, Tool Kit, Foot Pump etc… (Particularly this items only I am taking about) should I purchase it from Manali (Easily Available?) or should I purchase it beforehand from my starting destination which is pune.
    • Can Leh to nubra valley to & fro can be done in one day.
    • I don’t have experience of driving Bullets (from past 10 years I am driving CBZ,ZMA & ZMR) Should I go for Bullets or other bikes? (As heard that Bullets have a reputation of break downs)
    • We are only 2 person driving on Bike. (No Companion, We are only the passionate in the group of our friends to do this ride) Please share your experience what precaution should we take as we are not traveling in group.

    Thanks & Regards,


    1. 1. Manali has everything. No need to buy from and get from Pune.
      2. You can do Leh to Nubra in one day but its a little too much and you’ll have to leave really early from Leh. Even then it’s not guaranteed that K’La will be open for you early morning. I wouldn’t suggest this.
      3. Yes, the bullets that you get on hire usually aren’t maintained well and will break down. We took our own personal bikes (all bullets) so never had a problem. But, then there is no guarantee that even hired pulsar, CBZs will be better maintained.
      4. Stay safe and have fun 🙂

  53. Sharninder

    we are from Assam We are planing to go leh via manali also some important place of kasmir then to Jammu So pl give Idea in my M/no 9435708363 or 03612478749
    biswanath b

  54. according to me u have to go through manali & returns through srinagar bcs u can visit drass srinagar or more over u can visit kargill city as kargill war memorial on the way on national highway to salute soldiers who sacrifices thier lifes for our freedom.after all they are true heroes of our life.i have recently returned from leh. for a successfull tour u have to join ur nearest friends that can tollrate u when u suffer from ams.

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