Spiti Valley Travel Guide - Stunning Landscapes, mind-blowing travel hacks, Snow leopards/Himalayan-Ibex stories and Unforgettable lifetime experience

There is an Echosphere cafe in Koumic and I was super happy to find boards of Echosphere all around. I got to know about this organization in one of the TEDx events in Delhi and how this organization helps in building sustainable means of generating energy got this region through solar equipments and there are various initiatives.


During one week long journey through different parts of Shimla, Kinnaur and Spiti, I learned a lot and made best of the trip with 4 buddies. This post shares some of the high & low points from our trip, along with learnings and recommendations about planning your travel, stay, food & other things. 

Let's talk about how to reach Spiti Valley and best commute mode to explore this part of Himalayan Ranges in India : 

Let's discuss how to reach Nako Village & other places in Spiti Valley from cities like Shimla, Manali, Chandigarh & Delhi. And the answer is very simple that these places are only accessible via road. Nearest railway station is Shimla and it's connected to Kalka through narrow gauge. Nearest airport is also Shimla. One can also plan to come from Bhuntar (Kullu) airport. 

There are buses available from Shimla and Rekong Peo, but limited connectivity. 


Things to keep in Mind - Petrol Pumps, Car Repair shops :

1. Know locations of Petrol Pumps.
2. Ensure you keep refilling the tank as you come across an open Petrol Pump.
3. Keep a watch of car repair shops on the way and take a pause for precautionary check-up of your car. 
4. If possible, keep 2 spare tyres in your car

Some of our favourite places to stop for a good meal when heading towards Spiti Valley :

1. Tapari : Tapari is in Kinnaur and has some good dhabas for a meal break.

2. Basmati Dhaba : This is a place few kilometers away from Jeori when going towards Spiti/Kinnaur. This dhaba comes on left side and a wonderful place to have delicious meal with Himachali flavours. 

3. Himalayan Dhaba, Narkanda

4. Hurling : We took our lunch break at Hurling during one of the days in Spiti Valley. There is a small market at Hurling with 2 places to eat. Throughout we got basic but tasty food. Local Rajmah (Kidney Beans), Kadhi and rice are common options you get in most of the dhabas in Spiti. Mix-veg or seasonal vegetables would also be available along with tawa roti.


Pangi Nala - A wonderful place for a quick break :

Pangi Nala was one of the most interesting places we saw on our way. It's a huge water-stream with huge pressure. During this journey we saw various waterfalls from distance and noticed lot of marks of waterfalls, which were dry. I am sure that whole terrain must be looking awesome in monsoons with plenty of waterfalls all around, like what you see around Lonavala.

As we kept moving, we came across more interesting views and also crossed the place where Setluj & Spiti rivers meet. Khab is the place I guess. From here on, there is a steep climb in a narrow road which has rocky mountains on the right and deep valley on the left. By looking at the rocks it seemed that river used to flow much higher that the current state. After 30 minutes of drive on zig-zag road you reach the top from where you see snow covered peaks on one side and golden mountains on the other side because of sunset. The views were spectacular hereon. This was the moment when we again felt that we are in another world now. Shimla, Kinnaur and Spiti have completely different terrains and have their own charm. After driving for an hour we hit the Nako Village. 


Nako Village and Lake : First destination in Spiti Valley :

As we hit the top of the nearby hill, this was the view - Nako lake with crisp reflection of clouds against the blue sky and Nako village looking so small surrounded by huge mountain ranges. Nako village is pretty huge comparatively but in above photograph it looks so small in comparison to the surrounding mountain ranges of Spiti Valley.

Let's start step by step. The very first thing to sort out after reaching Nako Village is finding a place to stay, unless you have done advance booking here. There are a handful homestays in the village. We stayed in a very basic homestay which was just on the main market and close to the Bank branch in the village. 

Before jumping onto places to stay in Nako Village, we should have discussed about how to reach Nako Village & other places in Spiti Valley from cities like Shimla, Manali, Chandigarh & Delhi. And the answer is very simple that these places are only accessible via road. Nearest railway station is Shimla and it's connected to Kalka through narrow gauge. Nearest airport is also Shimla. One can also plan to come from Bhuntar (Kullu) airport.     There are buses available from Shimla and Rekong Peo, but limited connectivity.


Early in the morning we decided to climb up a nearby hill from where one can see the beautiful snow covered peaks and the glittering Nako lake with reflection of the blue sky surrounded by shiny white clouds. This is that hour of the day when sunlight was just hitting the tip of the mountains as you can see in above photograph.     Related Post - Morning walk around Nako Lake and the village in Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh

Early in the morning we decided to climb up a nearby hill from where one can see the beautiful snow covered peaks and the glittering Nako lake with reflection of the blue sky surrounded by shiny white clouds. This is that hour of the day when sunlight was just hitting the tip of the mountains as you can see in above photograph.

Here is a little closer view of Nako lake in Spiti valley in front of the Nako Village with different kinds of houses with varied architectural styles. Above photograph shows a friend's camera setup to click time-lapse and I am yet to see the final results after 1.5 years of this trip but still waiting. If I can write about the trip after 1.5 years, I can certainly expect the time-lapse to come out in next few months :).

As we hit the top of the nearby hill around Nako village, this was the view - Nako lake with crisp reflection of clouds against the blue sky and Nako village looking so small surrounded by huge mountain ranges. Nako village is pretty huge comparatively but in above photograph it looks so small in comparison to the surrounding mountain ranges of Spiti Valley. Nako Village has different kinds of houses with varied architectural styles. 

While you are traveling in Spiti don't expect fancy food expect few places in Kaza town which is sort of commercial headquarter of Lahaul and Spiti district.     Related Post - Basmati Dhaba at Badhal, on the way to Spiti Valley & Kinnaur from Shimla

While you are traveling in Spiti don't expect fancy food expect few places in Kaza, town which is sort of commercial headquarter of Lahaul and Spiti district.

Related Post - Basmati Dhaba at Badhal, on the way to Spiti Valley & Kinnaur from Shimla


We we walked down from the hill and came close to the Nako lake, we noticed these unique sheds for animal without any roof. And we were wondering why is it so. Talked to some locals and then realized that these animals enjoy the sunlight and since there is no rains in this area, there is no need for the shed. When there is snow, there are different provisions for these animals. We were also guessing if it helps in anyway for protecting these pets from other harmful animals, but doesn't seem so.

We we walked down from the hill and came close to the Nako lake, we noticed these unique sheds for animal without any roof. And we were wondering why is it so. Talked to some locals and then realized that these animals enjoy the sunlight and since there is no rains in this area, there is no need for the shed. When there is snow, there are different provisions for these animals. We were also guessing if it helps in anyway for protecting these pets from other harmful animals, but doesn't seem so.


After a quick hike and roaming around the Nako lake, we headed inside the village to explore the action inside but it was too early to see any action :). Although we met some of the folks on our way.

After a quick hike and roaming around the Nako lake, we headed inside the village to explore the action inside but it was too early to see any action :). Although we met some of the folks on our way.

This gentleman was going up towards the hill with his sheep.     Related post - Road-trip from Nako to Kaza via Gue Monastery, Himachal Pradesh

This gentleman was going up towards the hill with his sheep.

Related post - Road-trip from Nako to Kaza via Gue Monastery, Himachal Pradesh


Here is a typical view of houses around the edges/borders of the village surrounding by beautiful farming land. I loved the way these fields are maintained and especially the trees your notice in the farm. They are apple trees. Apple produced in this part of the Himachal Pradesh is considered as one of the best quality which is exported.

Here is a typical view of houses around the edges/borders of the village surrounding by beautiful farming land. I loved the way these fields are maintained and especially the trees your notice in the farm. They are apple trees. Apple produced in this part of the Himachal Pradesh is considered as one of the best quality which is exported.


If you watch closely, you see lot of stones and wood blocks as many constituents of houses in Nako Village in Spiti Valley. The dry wood you see on the top of these houses is collected over the months for winters as during winters it becomes hard to get right wood to keep houses warm and for many days it's had to come out of the houses.     Related Post - How to reach Spiti Valley from Delhi and things to do around Kinnaur/Spiti in Himachal Pradesh

If you watch closely, you see lot of stones and wood blocks as many constituents of houses in Nako Village in Spiti Valley. The dry wood you see on the top of these houses is collected over the months for winters as during winters it becomes hard to get right wood to keep houses warm and for many days it's had to come out of the houses.

Related Post - How to reach Spiti Valley from Delhi and things to do around Kinnaur/Spiti in Himachal Pradesh


Being remote and located in such secluded place, it seemed that people of the village are pretty relaxed in terms of safety and security of their houses. We noticed lot of doors which were mainly for entrance but not locked properly.      Related Post - 500 years old Mummy of Sangha Tenzin with teeth & hair at Gue Monastery

Being remote and located in such secluded place, it seemed that people of the village are pretty relaxed in terms of safety and security of their houses. We noticed lot of doors which were mainly for entrance but not locked properly. 




A cow photograph can be very auspicious for this blogpost so I thought of including this one here :).     Related Post - Dhankar to Kalpa - Back journey from Spiti to Kinnaur region of Himachal Pradesh

A cow photograph can be very auspicious for this blogpost so I thought of including this one here :).

Related Post - Dhankar to Kalpa - Back journey from Spiti to Kinnaur region of Himachal Pradesh


Above photograph shows a good contrast between very old styled house on one side and newly built on other side. I am sure you can make out which one is the old vs new.

Above photograph shows a good contrast between very old styled house on one side and newly built on other side. I am sure you can make out which one is the old vs new.


This is the most spectacular part of the village which is close to the Nako Monastery. There is this huge ground where most of the vehicles are parked and the place is just in front of the snow covered peaks. It's pretty windy place so good to see this during sunny day and avoidable during evenings when it's chilly out there.     Related post - Kalpa to Shimla - Last leg of our road trip to Spiti & KInnaur in Himachal Pradesh

This is the most spectacular part of the village which is close to the Nako Monastery. There is this huge ground where most of the vehicles are parked and the place is just in front of the snow covered peaks. It's pretty windy place so good to see this during sunny day and avoidable during evenings when it's chilly out there.

Related post - Kalpa to Shimla - Last leg of our road trip to Spiti & KInnaur in Himachal Pradesh


This is the most spectacular part of the village which is close to the Nako Monastery. There is this huge ground where most of the vehicles are parked and the place is just in front of the snow covered peaks. It's pretty windy place so good to see this during sunny day and avoidable during evenings when it's chilly out there.     Related post - Kalpa to Shimla - Last leg of our road trip to Spiti & KInnaur in Himachal Pradesh

Nako village has been one of the most important halts for us in Spiti Valley. Next destination after Nako village was Kaza.     Related Post - How did I manage a week long trip to Spiti Valley in less than 4000 Rs

Nako village has been one of the most important halts for us in Spiti Valley. Next destination after Nako village was Kaza.

Related Post - How did I manage a week long trip to Spiti Valley in less than 4000 Rs


If you liked this post and found it helpful, I would request you to follow these things when traveling -   1. Manage your waste well and don’t litter Use dustbins.  2. Tell us if you went to a place and found it hard to locate a dustbin.   3. Avoid bottle waters in hills. Usually you get clean water in hills and water bottles create lot of mess in our ecosystem.   4. Say big no to plastic and avoid those unhealthy snacks packed in plastic bags. Rather buy fruits.   5. Don't play loud blaring music in forests of jungle camps. You are a guest in that ecosystem and disturbing the locals (humans and animals) is not polite

Malling Nala : One of the scariest roads in Spiti Valley : 

During one of the mornings, we had to cross Malling Nala, which is considered as one of the dangerous roads in Spiti. Landslide at this place is very unpredictable so it's extremely important to be careful and a keep an eye on mountains surrounding this road. During this trip we drove through National Highway 22, 5 and 505. This was the day when we stopped at different places for clicking photographs. 

Gue Monastery - Beautifully located around huge mountains of Spiti Valley : 


If I have to think about most talked and popular monastery in Spiti Valley, it would be Geu Monastery where one can see 500 years old mummy.  More than that I loved it's location and third photograph of this post would give you better sense why do I say that. I don't know how I missed doing this series on Monasteries of Spiti valley when I was sharing about my week long trip to Spiti region of Himachal Pradesh. But it's not too late, so let's know more about Gue Monastery in Spiti and some interesting facts/tips.

Gue Monastery is 9km away from main highway and beautiful drive. You cross beautiful Gue Village before hitting the Monastery and one should stop at the village to check if the room with mummy is open. If its not open, you need to take a villager with you to open the room, see the mummy and drop him back in the village. It's not a big hassle as village is on the way and it's important that you remember to see the famous mummy in Gue Monsatery. 

....

If I have to think about most talked and popular monastery in Spiti Valley, it would be Geu Monastery where one can see 500 years old mummy More than that I loved it's location and third photograph of this post would give you better sense why do I say that. I don't know how I missed doing this series on Monasteries of Spiti valley when I was sharing about my week long trip to Spiti region of Himachal Pradesh. But it's not too late, so let's know more about Gue Monastery in Spiti and some interesting facts/tips. 


Above photograph shows the popular 500 years old mummy of Spiti Valley. One of the most interesting things I found in Spiti valley is the mummy of Sangha Tenzin, which is preserved in Gue Monastery. Supposedly it’s 500 years old mummy which was found in a village called Ghuen in chilling & remote district of Himachal Pradesh - Lahaul & Spiti. This region is located at about 6000 meters above sea level.     Related Post - Road-Trip from Shimla to Nako through Kinnaur : Spiti Diaries  This mummy was discovered first time in 1975 because of earthquake which opened an old tomb. And one of the scholars from USA declared that its at least 500 years ol

Above photograph shows the popular 500 years old mummy of Spiti Valley. One of the most interesting things I found in Spiti valley is the mummy of Sangha Tenzin, which is preserved in Gue Monastery. Supposedly it’s 500 years old mummy which was found in a village called Ghuen in chilling & remote district of Himachal Pradesh - Lahaul & Spiti. This region is located at about 6000 meters above sea level. 

This mummy was discovered first time in 1975 because of earthquake which opened an old tomb. And one of the scholars from USA declared that its at least 500 years old. 

This is how Gue Monastery looks from a distance when you are driving towards it. This mummy is places in a room near this Monastery. Gue village comes on the way, so if you are planning to visit the place just take a pause in village to check if the room is open. If not, you need to take someone with you so that room can be opened to see this mummy.      Related Post - Morning walk around Nako Lake and the village in Kinnaur, Himachal Pradesh

This is how Gue Monastery looks from a distance when you are driving towards it. This mummy is places in a room near this Monastery. Gue village comes on the way, so if you are planning to visit the place just take a pause in village to check if the room is open. If not, you need to take someone with you so that room can be opened to see this mummy.  

The mummy of Sangha Tenzin is placed in the room you see on the left of Gue Monastery. It's rare to find mummies made naturally. Most of the mummies we have read about are mostly created with a chemical process. Natural preservation needs a very specific set of conditions and interesting Spiti has that. Spiti is a cold desert with extreme weather conditions and probably that helped in whole process.     Related Post - Basmati Dhaba at Badhal, on the way to Spiti

The mummy of Sangha Tenzin is placed in the room you see on the left of Gue Monastery. It's rare to find mummies made naturally. Most of the mummies we have read about are mostly created with a chemical process. Natural preservation needs a very specific set of conditions and interesting Spiti has that. Spiti is a cold desert with extreme weather conditions and probably that helped in whole process. 

There is this interesting article on web which talks about Sangha Tenzin mummy, it's formation and how it's different from mummies made in Japan. Supposedly, Japan has various mummies of lamas.   Related post - Road-trip from Nako to Kaza via Gue Monastery, Himachal Pradesh  In Japan, there is a practice that monks start starvation process and start eating less gradually. Eat some specific stuff and start exposing their skin to lamps for drying it gradually. That's how they lead towards dead and prepare the body for becoming a mummy.

There is this interesting article on web which talks about Sangha Tenzin mummy, it's formation and how it's different from mummies made in Japan. Supposedly, Japan has various mummies of lamas. 

In Japan, there is a practice that monks start starvation process and start eating less gradually. Eat some specific stuff and start exposing their skin to lamps for drying it gradually. That's how they lead towards dead and prepare the body for becoming a mummy. 

We had already been awed by the barren mountain slopes of Spiti  and the grandness of these landscapes. As we spent more time in Spiti we realized that this land has lot of secrets to explore and a week is not enough for that. Be it the culture of the place, buddhist influence, dramatic sunsets, cloud play in bright blue sky - everything brings lot of energy. And on top of all that exploring the mummy of Sangha Tenzin was a very special experience.     Related Post - How to reach Spiti Valley from Delhi and things to do around Kinnaur/Spiti in Himachal Pradesh

We had already been awed by the barren mountain slopes of Spiti  and the grandness of these landscapes. As we spent more time in Spiti we realized that this land has lot of secrets to explore and a week is not enough for that. Be it the culture of the place, buddhist influence, dramatic sunsets, cloud play in bright blue sky - everything brings lot of energy. And on top of all that exploring the mummy of Sangha Tenzin was a very special experience. 

We had already been awed by the barren mountain slopes of Spiti  and the grandness of these landscapes. As we spent more time in Spiti we realized that this land has lot of secrets to explore and a week is not enough for that. Be it the culture of the place, buddhist influence, dramatic sunsets, cloud play in bright blue sky - everything brings lot of energy. And on top of all that exploring the mummy of Sangha Tenzin was a very special experience.     Related Post - How to reach Spiti Valley from Delhi and things to do around Kinnaur/Spiti in Himachal Pradesh


We had already been awed by the barren mountain slopes of Spiti  and the grandness of these landscapes. As we spent more time in Spiti we realized that this land has lot of secrets to explore and a week is not enough for that. Be it the culture of the place, buddhist influence, dramatic sunsets, cloud play in bright blue sky - everything brings lot of energy. And on top of all that exploring the mummy of Sangha Tenzin was a very special experience.     Related Post - How to reach Spiti Valley from Delhi and things to do around Kinnaur/Spiti in Himachal Pradesh


Tabo Town with Thousand year old Monastery and Grand Himalayan Landscapes :

Tabo Monastery has huge frescoes on the walls and it’s little hard to maintain all them. Having said that, these frescoes look beautiful after so many years.

Tabo is an interesting place which comes on the way to Kaza from Nako/Shimla. There is one of the oldest monastery here and now new compound is also built. Above you see the new part of the monastery. 

Tabo is an interesting place which comes on the way to Kaza from Nako/Shimla. There is one of the oldest monastery here and now new compound is also built. Above you see the new part of the monastery.



Here is the old Monastery of Tabo. Tabo is considered as oldest continuously operating buddhist enclave in and around Indian Himalayan ranges. This is a very unique monastery setup. You would have always imagines monasteries with colorful exteriors but this one is different. Photography was not allowed inside, so you won't find any photograph here.

Here is the old Monastery of Tabo. Tabo is considered as oldest continuously operating buddhist enclave in and around Indian Himalayan ranges. This is a very unique monastery setup. You would have always imagines monasteries with colorful exteriors but this one is different. Photography was not allowed inside, so you won't find any photograph here. 

Soon after we were crossing the region near Tabo and in above photograph you see Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya of Spiti region and I am not sure if kids from Lahual region also come to this school or there is a different one for them. This is beautifully located around these high mountains. I was trying to imagine the life of teachers who are doing job at such a beautiful location.

Above photograph shows campus of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya near Tabo town. 

Tabo Monastery has huge frescoes on the walls and it’s little hard to maintain all them. Having said that, these frescoes look beautiful after so many years. 

These landscapes encourage you to do crazy stuff. Be it climbing smaller hills, to throwing stones over the wide river and challenging each other about doing something which sounds weird & stupid. At times, these childish things can help you compose better shots :).

These landscapes encourage you to do crazy stuff. Be it climbing smaller hills, to throwing stones over the wide river and challenging each other about doing something which sounds weird & stupid. At times, these childish things can help you compose better shots :).
Spiti is cold desert mountain valley in Himalayan ranges of Himachal Pradesh, India. It's interesting to see distantly places villages in the valley and those lovely house with prayer flags all around. This region looks more like a part of tibet than India and there is a silk route which can be observed at some places in Spiti valley.

Spiti is cold desert mountain valley in Himalayan ranges of Himachal Pradesh, India. It's interesting to see distantly places villages in the valley and those lovely house with prayer flags all around. This region looks more like a part of tibet than India and there is a silk route which can be observed at some places in Spiti valley.
If we talk about road condition, most of the places have rough road but it's pretty hard to maintain roads in this region. And in last 10 years the roads have improved a lot. Some of the patches are in good condition. Some of the stretches are very scary because of the narrow roads and the river on the other side.

If we talk about road condition, most of the places have rough road but it's pretty hard to maintain roads in this region. And in last 10 years the roads have improved a lot. Some of the patches are in good condition. Some of the stretches are very scary because of the narrow roads and the river on the other side.
As we moved ahead and we sensed that Kaza is not too far, the excitement level suddenly increased and soon after we hit this location with some amazing formations of sand. There are various formations all around the Spiti valley but this part of the valley was pretty interesting. It was the place from where Dhankar Monastery was also visible. Dhankar is 12 kilometers away from the main road and we planned to go there in our journey back to Shimla.


As we moved ahead and we sensed that Kaza is not too far, the excitement level suddenly increased and soon after we hit this location with some amazing formations of sand. There are various formations all around the Spiti valley but this part of the valley was pretty interesting. It was the place from where Dhankar Monastery was also visible. Dhankar is 12 kilometers away from the main road and we planned to go there in our journey back to Shimla.

This view reminded me of Grand Canyon. Although I am yet to go down into the Grand Canyon and explore it well, but I am sure driving in the middle of the canyon would be a similar experience.

This view reminded me of Grand Canyon. Although I am yet to go down into the Grand Canyon and explore it well, but I am sure driving in the middle of the canyon would be a similar experience. 

Kaza Town in Spiti Valley - Administrative town of Lahaul and Spiti District of Himachal Pradesh : 

Finally we hit Kaza town and it was time to find a decent place to stay. After checking out few places we decided to stay in this small guest-house which was near to the market and not so close to the main road. But connecting road goes till this place and there was place to park our car. Again we cracked quite an interesting deal and booked 2 rooms for 400 rs each . This didn't include any meal or tea. Food was not an issue as market was close-by.  Overall this day was full of some interesting halts on the way and we reached in timely manner. We had enough time in the evening to roam around the market.   So keep following our Spiti Diaries and we shall be sharing more about the places we explored along with some very basic tips.

You reach Kaza by crossing various smaller roads which connect with other interesting places like Dhankar, Lalung, Kibri, Hikkim, Khar, Demul & Dogsa.

Kaza is relatively bigger town in Spiti Valley.

Kibber Village in Spiti Valley : A Beautiful village at height & at around 20 km from Kaza - 

You cross through Key Monastery when visiting Kibber and this road again offers great views of snow capped mountains on the left with Spiti river flowing in the foreground. The road on other side of the river leads towards Manali, but we didn't have right vehicle to cross those passes to reach Manali. Some of us were tempted to try it, but it was not a wise thing to do. Hence we didn't really moved that side. 

While coming back from Kibber, we stopped at Key Monastery for some time and then drove down. Now we had 2 choices, either drive to Kaza and then drive up towards Dhankar or skip Kaza and go towards Dhankar via Langza, Hikkim and Komic. 

Key Monastery : Biggest Monastery in Spiti Valley and Training Centre for Lamas - 


Spiti is also famous for it's old & different styled monasteries. After driving for few minutes, we hit a place from where we could see the Key Monastery. There is a small village on the way which is gradually converting into bigger town with modern buildings under construction. This photograph is clicked from the same village. There is also a primary school in this town. I clicked few photographs of the kids doing morning prayer but haven't processed them yet. Will try to share those in one of the other posts about Spiti.

Spiti is also famous for it's old & different styled monasteries. After driving for few minutes, we hit a place from where we could see the Key Monastery. There is a small village on the way which is gradually converting into bigger town with modern buildings under construction. This photograph is clicked from the same village. There is also a primary school in this town. I clicked few photographs of the kids doing morning prayer but haven't processed them yet. Will try to share those in one of the other posts about Spiti. 


When we start listing down main places to visit in Spiti Valley, Key Monsatery is must visit place and is very well connected with Kaza town. Road condition is much better than the other roads which lead to Kaza from other parts of the country. Above photograph shows the gate for Key Monastery which is near the main road going towards Kibber village from Kaza. First we visited the Key Monastery and then planned to visit Kibber.

When we start listing down main places to visit in Spiti Valley, Key Monsatery is must visit place and is very well connected with Kaza town. Road condition is much better than the other roads which lead to Kaza from other parts of the Spiti Valley. Above photograph shows the gate for Key Monastery which is near the main road going towards Kibber village from Kaza. First we visited the Key Monastery and then planned to visit Kibber. 

Kibber Village of Spiti Valley :

Finally we reached Kibber village and above is a closer shot of the Kibber village. These is an open place to park your vehicle and then roam around the village. We didn't spend much time inside the village but wanted to have tea break here. We noticed one shop but didn't want to delay our next journey towards Langza, so headed back. One needs to take the same road till a point and then again start the up climb for reaching Langza.

Above is a closer shot of the Kibber village. There is an open place to park your vehicle and then roam around the village. 

These were some lovely scenes but hard to capture them in real sense. This one is shot from the moving car. These ladies were socializing on the road-side with stunning views all around. If you notice, most of the ladies cover the whole face in Spiti and that's because of very harsh sun. And the sun-burns can be very bad in this region. Skin literally comes out because of the burns and kids & ladies take special care of that.

These were some lovely scenes but hard to capture them in real sense. This one is shot from the moving car. These ladies were socialising on the road-side with stunning views all around. If you notice, most of the ladies cover the whole face in Spiti and that's because of very harsh sun. And the sun-burns can be very bad in this region. Skin literally comes out because of the burns and kids & ladies take special care of that.
These were some lovely scenes but hard to capture them in real sense. This one is shot from the moving car. These ladies were socializing on the road-side with stunning views all around. If you notice, most of the ladies cover the whole face in Spiti and that's because of very harsh sun. And the sun-burns can be very bad in this region. Skin literally comes out because of the burns and kids & ladies take special care of that.

After visiting Key Monastery, we started heading towards Kibber which was a little steep climb in comparison to the climb we had to take for reaching Key Monastery. And I noticed this village at a distance, which is not kibber but some other place. It looked very beautiful from a distance and hope that above photograph give you some sense about the placement of these houses w.r.t. these huge mountains.

Here is a photograph shot from Kibber village but it shows some other village and I am not aware of the name of this village.

Here is a photograph shot from Kibber village but it shows some other village and I am not aware of the name of this village.
This drive from Kibber to Langza is very interesting & unique. One needs to drive on that road to understand what I mean by that.

Langza : A wonderful place with Spiti valley's largest Budhha statue at such high altitude - 

Above photograph would give you some sense about the scale of each thing here. This statue is itself huge but against these landscapes it looks so small. Just notice the man standing next to this statue. And the shining sun is making overall setting more appealing.

Above photograph would give you some sense about the scale of each thing here. This is a huge Buddha statue places in Langza village and this statue is visible from places around this place. This statue is itself huge but against these landscapes it looks so small. Just notice the man standing next to this statue. And the shining sun is making overall setting more appealing. 


This drive from Kibber to Langza is very interesting & unique. One needs to drive on that road to understand what I mean by that.

As we were climbing up towards Langza, we noticed this road on the left side. It was interesting to see such a long straight road in Spiti Valley. It seems that road we see in above photograph takes you to other side of the valley and gradually it leads toward Manali.
Here is a little closer look at the straight road that I mentioned above. You can see it from the road connecting Langza with Kaza.

Here is a little closer look at the straight road that I mentioned above. You can see it from the road connecting Langza with Kaza.
After the steep climb, we reached in pains on the top of the hill. We could see this huge statue of Budha for long time when we were driving towards Lagza village. What is see above is Lagza village. So Budhha is sitting on top hill near the village and all houses around are spread in surrounding hills of Langza. One can go close to this statute and drive down into the village.

After the steep climb, we reached in pains on the top of the hill. We could see this huge statue of Buddha for long time when we were driving towards Lagza village. What is see above is Lagza village. So Budhha is sitting on top hill near the village and all houses around are spread in surrounding hills of Langza. One can go close to this statute and drive down into the village.
As we reached Langza village and near the Statue, we thought of spending some time around these hills which were further surrounded by snow covered mountains all around. I loved these houses and if you notice there is a layer of grass on the roof and that's mainly for maintaining temperature inside the house, especially in winters.

As we reached Langza village and near the Statue, we thought of spending some time around these hills which were further surrounded by snow covered mountains all around. I loved these houses and if you notice there is a layer of grass on the roof and that's mainly for maintaining temperature inside the house, especially in winters. 

After some time around Langza village, we headed towards Koumik and now the road condition was getting worse. These mountains had some snow and it was melting, so roads were little slushy and also there were plenty of sharp stones on the road.


Again it was a steep climb for Langza and we came across some interesting places where car was doing zig-zag between mountains. After a while we were on top of the hill and driving in plains. For a change, there was land on both sides of the road and then we see huge statue of Buddha. 


Koumic Village - A Beautiful village in Spiti Valley with one of the oldest Monasteries of Lahaul & Spiti region of Himachal Pradesh : 

Here is another old Monastery at Koumik. If you notice & observe is closely, it's made up of mud & the stones.

Here is another old Monastery at Koumik. If you notice & observe is closely, it's made up of mud & the stones.
Komic Gompa has pretty important status in Spiti valley. Interesting there were lot of vehicles at the time we reached and I am comparing that with people visiting other surrounding places like Langza and Key. That can be incidental and a perception that I made after reaching the place.

Komic Gompa has pretty important status in Spiti valley.
There is an Echosphere cafe in Koumic and I was super happy to find boards of Echosphere all around. I got to know about this organization in one of the TEDx events in Delhi and how this organization helps in building sustainable means of generating energy got this region through solar equipments and there are various initiatives.

The road which connects back to main highway. There is a caution - don't go on this road with smaller vehicle as roads are slushy because of melting snow and can be risky. You hardly see other cars coming in this direction so getting help is also an issue. Our tyre got punctured on this road, which has high probability. We were lucky that we reach the highway safely as we didn't have other spare tire. Keeping 2 spare tires can be a good strategy when travelling in Spiti as tire fixing shops are located at distance. 

Landscapes were amazing around this whole stretch and there was a time when it got dark at 2pm. It start snowing and we felt like going out of the car, but preferred to keep moving as we had long way to go that day

Landscapes were amazing around this whole stretch and there was a time when it got dark at 2pm. It start snowing and we felt like going out of the car, but preferred to keep moving as we had long way to go that day.
Gradually we go downwards when we have to hit the main highway connecting Shimla with Kaza. From that stretch one could see these farms surrounding by beautiful houses and huge mountain peaks covered with snow.

Gradually we go downwards when we have to hit the main highway connecting Shimla with Kaza. From that stretch, one could see these farms surrounding by beautiful houses and huge mountain peaks covered with snow.
Above is the photograph of Spiti river flowing through high mountains of Spiti on both the sides and understanding the scale is more important here. Just notice is the man walking on the road. I am sure you can't even notice him, so imagine the grandness of these landscapes. After a week in Spiti, I started loving these hues.


Above is the photograph of Spiti river flowing through high mountains of Spiti on both the sides and understanding the scale is more important here. Just notice, there is the man walking on the road. I am sure you can't even notice him, so imagine the grandness of these landscapes. After a week in Spiti, I started loving these hues. 

Dhankar - A large high village which used to be capital of Spiti : 

Soon after we took another road and left the main highway to move towards Dhankar. Dhankar Monastery is located at a beautiful place and the drive is even more interesting with views of snow capped mountains on the left overlooking Spiti river.

Dhankar Village is located at a beautiful place and the drive is even more interesting with views of snow capped mountains on the left overlooking Spiti river. You have to drive up from the highway and you get to see some amazing landscapes and aerial views of Spiti valley.  

Dhankar Monastery is also known to have been Nyingma-pa, Sakya-pa and Kagyu-pa, depending upon the religious allegiance of the King’s family. One of the major attractions of Dhankar Monastery is statue of Vairochana consisting of 4 figures seated back to back. It also houses a collection of various centuries old thankas and that's pretty interesting.

Dhankar Monastery is also known to have been Nyingma-pa, Sakya-pa and Kagyu-pa, depending upon the religious allegiance of the King’s family. One of the major attractions of Dhankar Monastery is statue of Vairochana consisting of 4 figures seated back to back. It also houses a collection of various centuries old thankas and that's pretty interesting.


Dhankar village is situated at an elevation of approximately 3800 meters. The monastery complex is built on a high  montain overlooking the confluence of the Spiti and Pin Rivers on the left. That's one of the main reasons that Dhankar gompa is considered to be located at a very special location. The monastery was built approximately one thousand years ago and now belongs to the Gelugspa School.  
Dhankar village is situated at an elevation of approximately 3800 meters. The monastery complex is built on a high  mountain overlooking the confluence of the Spiti and Pin Rivers on the left. That's one of the main reasons that Dhankar gompa is considered to be located at a very special location. The monastery was built approximately one thousand years ago and now belongs to the Gelugspa School. 

Dhankar village is situated at an elevation of approximately 3800 meters. The monastery complex is built on a high  montain overlooking the confluence of the Spiti and Pin Rivers on the left. That's one of the main reasons that Dhankar gompa is considered to be located at a very special location. The monastery was built approximately one thousand years ago and now belongs to the Gelugspa School.


Dhankar used to be traditional capital of the Spiti Valley Kingdom during the 17th century and has some features dating back to the 12th century. Dhang means cliff in himachali language and khar means fort. So essentially Dhankar means fort on a cliff which defines the place quite literally. It was the palace of the early rulers of Spiti. The rulers of Dhankar also gave justice to the people and were famous for their harsh penalties until the British replaced them.

After reaching Dhankar, we had to find a good place to stay. There are multiple home-stays. First we went to the homestay which is at the beginning of the village and near new monastery. Charges were high w.r.t. the accommodation offered so we moved on. Finally we stayed in a homestay which was close to the fort and the highest peak of Dhankar village. We got a deal for 1200 rs for 5 of us. This included very good rooms to stay, dinner and the breakfast. Food served by our host Dolma was awesome. Breakfast here was my best meal in Spiti valley.


Some of us also trekked to Dhankar Lake and came back with brilliant photographs. 

That's all I had from Spiti Valley on the basis of what all I explored in the valley. We will bring you more from Spiti as well as Lahaul through friend travellers. 

If you liked this post and found it helpful, I would request you to follow these things when traveling - 

1. Manage your waste well and don’t litter Use dustbins. 
2. Tell us if you went to a place and found it hard to locate a dustbin. 
3. Avoid bottle waters in hills. Usually you get clean water in hills and water bottles create lot of mess in our ecosystem. 4. Say big no to plastic and avoid those unhealthy snacks packed in plastic bags. Rather buy fruits. 
5. Don't play loud blaring music in forests of jungle camps. You are a guest in that ecosystem and disturbing the locals (humans and animals) is not polite.

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