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HAUT

Discovery trip to the Great Himalayan National Park

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Zone

Great Himalayan National Park

Nombre de jours

15 days

Saison

June, July, Sept, Oct, Nov

Altitude maximale

4300 m

Difficulté

Modéré à difficile

Join us for an unforgettable journey through the majestic landscapes of India’s Himalayas, where towering peaks, ancient forests, and vibrant cultures converge to create an experience like no other. Our expedition invites you to explore the pristine beauty of the Great Himalayan National Park (GHNP), complemented by visits to the hill stations of Shimla and Dharamshala.

At the heart of our journey lies a commitment to Himalayan ecotourism, an ethos that seeks to preserve the delicate balance of nature while providing enriching experiences for travelers. As advocates of sustainable travel, we strive to minimize our environmental footprint and support local communities, ensuring that our adventures leave a positive impact on the region.

Our adventure begins amidst the colonial charm of Shimla, the erstwhile summer capital of British India. Immerse yourself in the nostalgia of this hill station as you stroll along the historic Mall Road, admire the colonial architecture, and soak in panoramic views of the surrounding mountains.

From Shimla, we venture deeper into the Himalayas, where the real adventure begins. The Great Himalayan National Park awaits, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its unparalleled biodiversity and stunning landscapes. Lace up your boots and prepare for a trek through pristine forests, meadows, and rugged mountain trails. You may encounter rare wildlife, including the elusive snow leopard, as it has been spotted many times in the Park.

But our journey doesn’t end with adventure; it extends to spiritual and cultural enrichment as we make our way to Dharamshala, nestled in the Kangra Valley. Explore the vibrant streets of McLeod Ganj, home to the Tibetan government-in-exile and His Holiness the Dalai Lama. You will get a glimpse of Tibetan culture, visit monasteries, and savor the flavors of Himalayan cuisine.

Discovery trip map

Classic Tour of Ladakh trek map

MAP OF OUR EXPLORATION THE HIMALAYAN HEIGHTS

Les chiffres indiquent l'endroit où vous passez la nuit ce jour-là.

Voyage expérience au Ladakh : itinéraire

Jour 1

Visites touristiques à Delhi

Upon your arrival at New Delhi airport, a taxi will be waiting to take you directly to your hotel. This will allow you to have a good night’s sleep before embarking on your exploration of northern India.
Delhi is influenced by a subtropical and semi-arid climate. If you arrive in June or July, it is very hot and humid, with the presence of the monsoon. Whereas in autumn, the climate is pleasant with moderate rainfall.
For your first day in Delhi, after an Indian breakfast at the hotel, we will take the metro, a typical mode of transport in Delhi and head first to Lodhi Garden. Arrival in India is not always easy in the first few hours due to the very different culture and atmosphere from what we are habituate in Europe. A true oasis of green and tranquility, a walk in the park will help the transition into this new country and provide an insight into typical Indian architecture through the royal tombs located within the park.
For lunch, we’ll head to the popular canteen of Andhra Pradesh Bhavan. It will be your first culinary discovery in a very typical Indian environment.
If you arrive during the summer, the day continues by taking a tuk-tuk to visit the National Museum, one of the largest museums in India. It exhibits over 500,000 works and objects from prehistoric times to modern art.
If you arrive in autumn, the day continues by taking a tuk-tuk to visit Old Delhi, to discover the medieval alleys of the old quarter. It perfectly represents Asia, with a high density of people in one place and a crowded, noisy, and lively atmosphere. In this area, we can visit the Jama Masjid, one of the largest mosques in India. A short walk away there is the Red Fort, a true symbol of India’s independence, which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
After this first day, we return to the hotel for dinner and rest.

Lodhi Garden in Delhi

Lodhi garden

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Déplacement minimal
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Hôtel : cat. A
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Altitude max : 220m
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Altitude nuit : 220m

Jour 2

Train trip to Shimla

The next day, the alarm will be early to reach the train station and catch the train at 7:40 a.m. heading to Chandigarh, a city known for being designed by the French architect Le Corbusier. We will have breakfast directly on the train. Train travel in India is an experience in itself, allowing you to enjoy the landscapes of rural India through the window.

The arrival in Chandigarh is scheduled for around 12 p.m. Here, we will change trains to board a “toy train,” named as such because of its narrow gauge of only 61 centimeters. This railway line was built by the British in 1881 and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The train slowly climbs into the mountains, allowing us to discover the Himalayan landscapes for the first time direcly from our seats.

By late afternoon, we arrive in Shimla, where we will stay at the Mall Hotel, located at the very top of the city in a very British style. The evening will be spent at the hotel with the choice of restaurant.

Lodhi Garden in Delhi

Lodhi garden

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Temps de trajet : 9h
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Hôtel : cat. A
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Altitude max: 2300m
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Altitude night: 2300m

Jour 3

First step in Tirthan Valley

From Shimla, we’ll embark on a journey to the enchanting Tirthan Valley, traversing the majestic Jalori Pass at an altitude of 3,150 meters, boasting breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape. From this pass, a walk will lead us to a 360° viewpoint, allowing us to embrace the magnificence of the Himalayan mountains.

As we descend into the Tirthan Valley, we’ll arrive at our homestay for the next two nights: a splendid guesthouse where a warm welcome awaits. From this idyllic retreat, the first peaks of the Great Himalayan National Park are already visible on the horizon, promising unforgettable adventures ahead.

views on Jalori Pass hike

Views on Jalori Pass hike

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Travel time : 6 hours
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Hôtel : cat. B
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Altitude max: 3150 m
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Altitude nuit : 2000 m

Jour 4

Rest before the trek

Before embarking on our epic 7-day trek, take time to immerse yourself in the natural and cultural splendour that surrounds us.

From our guesthouse, we’ll set off on a 2-3 hour walk through the mysterious cedar forests. On the way, we’ll discover the picturesque charm of the village of Chehni Kothi, home to the tallest tower in Himachal, dating back over 100 years. Soak up the local history and tradition while capturing breathtaking views of the snow-capped mountains of the Great Himalayan National Park…

Back at our guesthouse, it’s time to rest, recharge and share your expectations for the adventure ahead. We’ll be immersed in a warm and friendly atmosphere as we share a delicious meal lovingly prepared by the host family.

Chehani Kothi

Chehani Kothi

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. C
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Altitude maximale : 2300 m
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Altitude nuit : 2000 m

Jour 5

First day trek – Rolla

The trek starts from Gushaini at an altitude of 1,570m. From here, we follow the Tirthan River for 3 hours to the entrance to the Great Himalayan National Park, passing through the village of Ropra. As we advance, nature becomes wilder and human settlements begin to disappear. Arriving at the park entrance, we take a well-deserved break for lunch.
The afternoon will be shorter, with a 45-minute walk to Rolla, where the campsite and huts are located. On the way, the forest becomes increasingly dense and we pass a single house belonging to a charming old lady, the last inhabitant of the park. At Rolla, you can enjoy a delicious meal in the evening, thanks to the staff at the accommodation.

Monter la tente à Rolla

Monter la tente à Rolla

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Temps de trajet : 1h
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Hôtel : cat. B
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Altitude maximale : 2100 m
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Altitude nuit : 2100 m

Jour 6

Second day trek – Chalocha

This day is spent climbing up to Chalocha, which normally takes around 2 hours. It is of course possible to skip this stage and go straight to Nada. But if you do, it’s a long and demanding day, with a 7-hour walk and 1,100m of ascent. That’s why we suggest splitting the day in two, to make the most of the surrounding environment and scenery.
From Rolla, the trail takes in narrow bridges and wooden steps, and we’ll also have to cross the river on large rocks. We’ll do the walk in the morning, arriving at Chalocha by lunchtime. In the afternoon, we can enjoy the view and the beauty of the surrounding forest. It’s also a good opportunity to observe the local wildlife, such as the monkeys that regularly come down to the river to drink. Leopards have even been spotted in the area, but don’t worry, they don’t attack humans! The day ends with discussions and a good meal around the campfire.

Un pont pour traverser la rivière Tirthan

Un pont pour traverser la rivière Tirthan

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. A
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Altitude max: 3500m
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Altitude nuit : 3160 m

Jour 7

Third day trek – Nada Thach

Today we’re climbing to Nada Thach (3,300m, the highest peak in the Great Himalayan Park). But to get there, we’ll have to climb 1000 metres. From the river, a steep path takes us to the summit through dense oak and cedar forest. After a 2-hour climb, we’ll take a break for lunch, while admiring the beauty of the scenery.
In the afternoon, our guide will take us up to the Tirthan valley pass, which we will cross over an impressive ridge. Once over the pass, we can admire the Sainj valley. There are still 3 hours to walk before we finally reach the summit of Nada Thach, where we will set up camp on a relatively flat platform. From here, all the surrounding peaks will be visible and we’ll have the whole evening to rest and enjoy this unforgettable scenery.

Nada Thach dans le Great Himalayan National Park

Nada Thach

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. B
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Altitude maximale : 3300 m
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Altitude night : 3300 m

Jour 8

Fourth day trek – Majhoni

From Nad Thach, a welcome descent awaits us after yesterday’s tough climb. The trail is not easy, as it has been subject to numerous landslides over the seasons and is virtually unmaintained… but that’s what makes the adventure all the more interesting!
We descend to rejoin the Tirth River and continue to follow it through changing landscapes. Here we enter the high altitude ecosystems, with the possibility of seeing large wild mammals if we’re careful! At the end of the day, we reach Majhoni, at an altitude of 3,300m, where we set up camp.

La faune dans le Great Himalayan National Park

La faune dans le Great Himalayan National Park

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. D
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Altitude maximale : 3300 m
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Altitude night : 3300 m

Jour 9

Fifth day trek – Tirth

The Tirthan Valley has been respected and revered for centuries, giving it a special natural energy when we adventure there. This should give you plenty of energy to start the day’s journey to the Tirth camp. Here, the forest gives way to smaller bushes, which eventually give way to high altitude pastures. By lunchtime, we should have reached the camp.
This gives you a free afternoon to relax or observe the local wildlife, including blue sheep, ibex, Himalayan tahrs and snow leopards. If you still have the energy, we recommend you continue climbing to a place called ‘Saketi’, a sacred spot where the river Tirth rises. This is a large swamp covered with grasses and wild flowers, over which the river undulates magnificently. The scenery is absolutely incredible, with peaks topping 5,000m and huge hanging glaciers visible from the top. You’ll need to make sure you’re back down before dark, to enjoy the meal and campfire prepared by the guides.

Paysages à Saketi lors du trek de Tirth dans le Great Himalayan National Park

Landscapes in Saketi

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. D
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Altitude max : 4280 m
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Altitude night : 3700 m

Jour 10

Sixth day trek – Shankha Thach

After breakfast, it’s time to retrace our steps towards Nada Thach. However, the journey back up there in one day is quite demanding. Therefore, we’ll make our way towards the Shankha Thach campsite, where we’ll spend the night. Nestled amidst the rugged beauty of the Himalayas, this campsite offers a serene setting for rest and reflection after a day of trekking. As the sun sets over the towering peaks, we’ll gather around the campfire, sharing stories and laughter under the vast expanse of the night sky. Tomorrow, we’ll continue our trek towards Nada Thach, rejuvenated and ready to conquer the remaining miles of this epic adventure.

Rivière Tirthan dans l'Himachal Pradesh

Rivière Tirthan

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. C
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Altitude max : 3700 m
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Altitude night : 3000 m

Jour 11

Seventh day trek – Chalocha

From here, we have two options. We can take the ‘normal’ route back to Nada Thach, which involves another climb before descending to Chalocha as we did on the outward journey. Don’t worry, we’ll be faster getting back down to Chalocha as we were on the way up. The second option is to simply continue following the river to Chalocha. In this case, there is no climb, but the path is very poorly maintained and there are several difficult technical sections. If you’re not sure you want to use exposed terrain, it’s best to take the path via Nada Thach.

Camping à Chalocha dans le Great Himalayan National Park

Camping at Chalocha

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. B
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Altitude maximale : 3300 m
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Altitude night : 2380 m

Jour 12

Last day trek – Gushaini

On this final day of the trek, we’ll make our way to Rolla, where a hearty lunch awaits us. After replenishing our energy, we’ll embark on the descent to Gushaini in the afternoon. The trail offers stunning vistas as we bid farewell to the majestic mountains and lush landscapes of the Great Himalayan National Park.

Once in Gushaini, we’ll hop into awaiting transport, whisking us back to the familiar comforts of the guesthouse where our trek began. Here, we can relish the satisfaction of completing the trek as we indulge in a well-deserved shower and some much-needed relaxation. Reflecting on the challenges conquered and the memories made, we’ll gather for a celebratory meal, reminiscing about the highlights of our adventure and the bonds forged along the way.

Cozy living area - Homestay in the Tirthan Valley

Cozy living area – Homestay

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Temps de trajet : 1h
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Hôtel : cat. B
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Altitude max : 2380 m
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Altitude nuit : 2000 m

Jour 13

On the way to Dharamshala

The next day, we have a few hours drive ahead of us to reach the town of Dharamshala. Dharamshala is well known as the home of the Dalai Lama since 1959. A large proportion of the population are Tibetan refugees, as the Indian government has given land here to this exiled population.
Our hotel is in the area known as McLeod Ganj, above the rest of the city, where most of the Tibetan refugees live. Dinner will be served at the hotel.

Vue de Mcleodganj depuis Bhagsu

View of Mcleodganj

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Travel time : 6 hours
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Hôtel : cat. C
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Altitude max: 2000m
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Altitude nuit : 1500 m

Jour 14

Visit Dharamshala

In the heart of the city, known affectionately as ‘Little Lhasa’ due to its significance as the residence of the Dalai Lama and the Tibetan government in exile, our morning will be filled with reverence and insight as we visit the sacred grounds of the Dalai Lama’s house and temple. Immersed in the tranquil ambiance, we’ll gain a deeper understanding of Tibetan spirituality and history, paying homage to this iconic figure and his teachings.

After a soul-enriching morning, the afternoon unveils a tapestry of possibilities as we invite you to explore the streets of ‘Little Lhasa’. Engage with the vibrant local community, whose warmth and hospitality mirror the essence of Tibetan culture. Delight your senses with the aromas and flavors of authentic Tibetan cuisine, as you sample delicacies passed down through generations.

Allow yourself to be swept away by the rhythm of this culturally rich city, where every corner reveals a new facet of Tibetan heritage. Whether you choose to wander through bustling markets, engage in enlightening conversations with locals, or simply soak in the serene atmosphere of this spiritual enclave, your afternoon promises to be a memorable chapter in your Himalayan journey.”

Tibetan cafe in Dharamshala

Tibetan cafe in Dharamshala

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Temps de trajet : aucun
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Hôtel : cat. B
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Altitude maximale : 1500 m
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Altitude nuit : 1500 m

Jour 15

Return to Delhi

The final day will be dedicated to returning to Delhi by plane. The schedule will be defined according to the flight timings. Our journey concludes here, leaving us with cherished memories and a longing to return to these majestic mountains.

Travelling to India by flight

Flight

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Travel time : 30min
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Hotel : /
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Altitude maximale : 1500 m
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Altitude nuit : /
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JAN

Éviter

FÉV

Éviter

MAR

Éviter

AVR

Éviter

MAI

Éviter

JUIN

Meilleur moment

JUILLET

Meilleur moment

AOÛT

Possible

SEP

Possible

OCTOBRE

Meilleur moment

NOV

Bon moment

DÉC

Éviter

Itinéraire

1

Visites touristiques à Delhi

The first day we’ll explore Delhi's cultural treasures, from Lodhi Garden to iconic landmarks like Jama Masjid and the Red Fort or National Museum in case of extreme heat.
2

Train trip to Shimla

The following day, we’ll catch the train to Chandigarh, famed for its design by French architect Le Corbusier. In Chandigarh, we switch trains to embark on a scenic "toy train" journey to Shimla, where we'll settle in at the Mall Hotel, offering British-style accommodation.
3

First step in Thirtan valley

From Shimla, our journey to Tirthan Valley includes crossing Jalori Pass. Upon descent, we'll settle into our homestay for two nights, with the Great Himalayan National Park's peaks beckoning in the distance.
4

Rest before the trek

A 2-3 hour walk from our guesthouse takes us to Chehni Kothi, boasting the region's tallest tower. Return to the guesthouse for relaxation, reflection, and a meal with the host family.
5

First day trek - Rolla

The trek commences from Gushaini, tracing the Tirthan River. We’ll join Rolla for the first camp of the trek.
6

Second day trek - Chalocha

The day entails a 2-hour climb to Chalocha, including bridges and river crossings. We’ll reach Chalocha for lunch. During the afternoon, we can rest and observe wildlife, and conclude with campfire discussions and dinner.
7

Third day trek - Nada Thach

We’ll ascend to Nada Thach, the highest peak in the Great Himalayan Park, with a steep 1000-meter climb. During the climb, we can admire the Sainj valley, before reaching the summit of Nada Thach. We’ll set up camp on a flat platform.
8

Fourth day trek - Majhoni

Descending from Nada Thach, we navigate a rugged trail marked by landslides and minimal maintenance. Then following the Tirthan River, we traverse diverse landscapes, potentially encountering wild mammals. Our day ends at Majhoni.
9

Fifth day trek - Tirth

We’ll reach Tirth camp in the morning and after lunch, we can relax or observe wildlife like blue sheep and snow leopards. For the adventurous, we recommend to climb to 'Saketi' for breathtaking views before returning for dinner and a campfire.
10

Sixth day trek - Shankha Thach

After breakfast, we start our return to Nada Thach, but the ascent in one day is demanding. Thus, we'll stay overnight at Shankha Thach campsite.
11

Seventh day trek - Chalocha

We have two options from here. Firstly, we can choose the 'normal' route back to Nada Thach, involving another ascent before descending to Chalocha. Alternatively, we can follow the river directly to Chalocha, avoiding the climb but encountering poorly maintained paths and challenging technical sections. we recommend to go back to Nada Thach.
12

Last day trek - Gushaini

On the last day, we'll trek to Rolla for lunch, then descend to Gushaini. Transport will take us back to the guesthouse.
13

On the way to Dharamshala

The following day, we'll embark on a few hours' drive to Dharamshala, renowned as the residence of the Dalai Lama since 1959. The town hosts a significant Tibetan refugee population.
14

Visit Dharamshala

In the heart of the city, known as ‘Little Lhasa’ , our morning will be spent exploring the sacred grounds of his house and temple, delving into Tibetan spirituality and history. It will be a day of full immersion in the Tibetan culture, visiting the town and tasting some Tibetan dishes.
15

Return to Delhi

The final day will be dedicated to returning to Delhi by plane. The schedule will be defined according to the flight timings.

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Himalayan Ecotourism au Ladakh (en français, merci d'activer les sous-titres pour l'anglais)

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