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Spiti valley tour

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Travel with us to Spiti and enjoy our eco-friendly way to meet the Himalayas


Traveling to Spiti is a very exciting journey. It is so secluded behind the highest peaks of the Great Himalayan range that it takes 3 to 4 days to reach Spiti overland if you begin your journey from Delhi, the capital.
You don't have much choice for your approach as there are only two roads reaching the heart of Spiti. The main road Spiti goes through Shimla and then Reckong Peo, the headquarters of the Kinnaur district. The other one goes through Manali, on the way to Ladakh and then turn East towards Spiti. Both the roads meet at Kaza, the bigger yet small town of Spiti.

All our tours to Spiti start from Shimla and end at Manali. Hence you make the entire loop that takes you not only through Spiti, but also through Kinnaur and Lahaul, as you can see on the map below.
Most probably, you will be traveling during the monsoon that start around mid-June to mid-September. At this time of the year the motorable high passes are open and allows you to do the entire loop. It is also the most pleasant time in terms of average temperature.

The proposed tour in this page is a two week itinerary from Delhi to Manali, you just add one more day to be back at Delhi.
The tour offers a complete experience of Spiti with a visit of most of the places of interest and varied activities, including hiking, village life, camping, and spending time in Buddhist monasteries.

There are many ways to customize your tour.
Firstly we can adjust the program to the number of days that you have in hands. If you have less time, we may have to remove some of the elements of the proposed tour, or with a couple of more days we can even extend your Spiti tour to Ladakh.
Secondly we offer you different ways to experience Spiti. Would you prefer a challenging holidays with more trekking days, or would you prefer to take this oppoortunity to learn about Tidetan Buddhism, or your focus would be photography of Himalayan wildlife ? Read about the different options in the next section.



Spiti travel experiences


Your travel style

Classic


You want to discover Spiti, its landscapes and get a fair idea of the local culture. But in the same time you will be spending your holidays and so, you wish to have a minimum of comfort while traveling and for your night stay.

We will provide you with a local guide, a reliable vehicle with a good driver, and you will stay at the most comfortable hotels or guesthouses. Be aware that some places have only small guesthouses or camping for the night.

Let's plan your itinerary together and make it in a classic way !
On the way to Kunzum pass

A stop in the wild

The road that leads to Kunzum, the road to paradise!

In a hotel in Spiti

Hotel room

Hotels in Spiti are available for your comfort stay.

Adventurous


If you are among those who think that mountains are synonymous with using your two legs to explore and climb, this is probably your best travel style.
We may have to take you to Spiti by road, but on the spot there will be a lot of options for your adventure.

Either you would prefer day hikes in order to get back to your hotel for the night or you would prefer to reach deeper or higher into the Himalayan wilderness. In that case, you should have a look at our proposed multi-day treks here. In all the cases we can arrange your entire trip to Spiti including the trek !
Trekking in Spiti

Trekking in Spiti

The best way for nature and mountains enthusiasts !

Trek in Spiti valley

Above 5000 m

It is such an experience to cross the 5000 m line on foot.

Meet the locals


Have you been wondering about the Spitian culture and their lifestyle? The best way to explore and understand the local traditions is by staying with the locals and sharing a bit of their life.
In their homestay you can enjoy delightful home-cooked meals, and become like a real family member.

Our guides will be with you to help you overcome the language barrier. Usually, the bonds we create while travelling with locals and encountering the village folks in faraway lands give us memories for a lifetime.
If you would like to have such experience, do let us know :)
Monks in Spiti

Monks in Spiti

Sharing breakfast with monks from the Komic monastery

In a homestay in Spiti

Homestay in Spiti

Less comfort, perhaps, but what an experience !

Spiritual


From time immemorial, the Himalayas have been inspirational for numerous philosophers and spiritual leaders. Buddhism is one of the main religious and philosophical movement that emerged from the stunning environments of the Himalayan range.

In Spiti, the people practice the Tibetan Buddhism for more than a millenium, and it is still very vivid. For instance, the Kye monastery is the biggest teaching center of Tibetan Buddhism in India.
If you are interested in learning about the Buddhism philosophy and history, there is no better place than Spiti and Ladakh. Be in touch with us to immerse yourself in the craddle of one of the most beautiful wisdom in the world.
Monks in Spiti

Buddhism teaching

A young monk being thaught by a Lama in the Kye monastery

Kye monastery Spiti

Kye monastery

The magical atmosphere of the monasteries in Spiti valley.

Volunteering


Himalayan Ecotourism supports social and conservation projects across the Himalayas.
By traveling with us, not only you support financially our various projects, but we also give you the opportunity to get yourself involved on the spot.

Volunteering in Spiti is another way to meet the local culture and discover Spiti.
You can check the latest volunteering program in Spiti here.
Write the Himalayan Ecotourism story with us !
Volunteering in Spiti

Volunteering in Spiti

Volunteers of Himalayan Ecotourism on a trip to Spiti.

Volunteering in Spiti

Soap making

When locals and volunteers make local products together.

Blending all styles ! Customized tour.



Everything mentioned above rose your interest ?
Just click the Enquire button to let us know your best time and other preferences.
Together we will customize your entire tour to the Spiti valley.
Customized tour in Spiti

Customized tour in Spiti

Get ready for a lifetime travel experience !

Your travel mode

In a private vehicle


The most standard mode of travelling to Spiti with our experienced local drivers.

For group up to 4 persons we propose to travel in an Toyota Innova. This vehicle is very comfortable and suitable to run on these challenging roads.
If you are more than four you have a choice of either take 2 or more Toyota Innova or to travel with a bigger vehicle : the Tempo Traveller which can accommodate up 10 persons.
The Tempo Traveller is a bit slower than the Innova, but offers the advantage of traveling all together in only one vehicle.
Toyota Innova

Toyota Innova

A very comfortable vehicle up to 4 passenger + your guide.

Tempo Traveller

Tempo Traveller

Up to a group of 10 persons.

On a motorcycle


Spiti and Ladakh have dream roads for bikers who love to challenge themselves in rough terrain.

We provide the legendary Royal Enfield : Either the Classic 500cc or the Royal Enfield Himalayan (410 cc). Our machines are in excellent conditions.
For your safety, you will be followed by a back-up vehicle with a mechanic and all the spare parts in case of any problem on the way.
You can choose travelling by two on a single bike, the pilot and his/her pillion.

As riding a bike involves greater emissions per traveler, we include the offset of your carbon emission when you want to travel on a motorcycle. Please read here how we do that.
Royal Enfield classic 500

Royal Enfield

A group of bikers between Kunzum and Rohtang passes.

Royal Enfield

The Himalayan

A new model of Royal Enfield adapted for the Himalayan terrains.



Spiti tour itinerary in short


Our classic tour in Spiti valley
   This is the proposed 15 days itinerary described in details in this page.
Day 1 From Home to Delhi.
You reach Delhi by air from your country.
Day 2 From Delhi to Shimla.
By train up to Kalka and by private vehicle to Shimla.
Day 3 From Shimla to Reckong Peo.
Meet your Spiti guide and travel overland up to Kalpa near Reckong Peo.
Day 4 From Reckong Peo to Nako.
A shorter day to leave the monsoon behind and cross the 3000 m.
Day 5 From Nako to Tabo.
Finally reaching Spiti at the fabulous Tabo monastery.
Day 6 Stay at Tabo.
No road today, just enjoy Tabo.
Day 7 From Tabo to Mud.
Reaching the Pin valley via Dhankar.
Day 8 From Mud to Kaza.
Back in the Spiti valley at Kaza. Freetime at the market of Kaza.
Day 9 From Kaza to Demul.
Village life and homestay at Demul.
Day 10 From Demul to Komic.
Hiking above 4500 m to reach the village of Komic.
Day 11 From Komic to Kaza.
By road from Komic to Kaza with a visit of the Kye monastery and Kibber.
Day 12 From Kaza to Losar.
Going back up the Spiti river up to Losar.
Day 13 From Losar to Chandratal lake.
Crossing the Kunzum pass at 4550 m and sunset at the lake.
Day 14 From Chandratal lake to Manali.
Crossing the Rohtang pass to reach Manali.
Day 15 From Manali to Delhi.
By taxi to Chandigarh and then train to Delhi.
A shorter version
   This is a shorter version of the tour in 10 days keeping the essential of Spiti. It is recommended to keep one extra buffer day at Tabo to face the unpredictable.
Day 1 From Home to Delhi.
You reach Delhi by air from your country.
Day 2 From Delhi to Shimla.
By train up to Kalka and by private vehicle to Shimla.
Day 3 From Shimla to Reckong Peo.
Meet your Spiti guide and travel overland up to Kalpa near Reckong Peo.
Day 4 From Reckong Peo to Tabo.
Reaching Spiti at the fabulous Tabo monastery.
Day 5 From Tabo to Kaza.
Reaching the Pin valley via Dhankar.
Day 6 From Kaza to Komic or to Kibber.
Back in the Spiti valley at Kaza. Freetime at the market of Kaza.
Day 7 From Komic or Kibber to Losar.
Visit of Langza and homestay in Komic.
Day 8 From Losar to Chandratal lake.
Crossing the Kunzum pass at 4550 m and sunset at the lake.
Day 9 From Chandratal lake to Manali.
Crossing the Rohtang pass to reach Manali.
Day 10 From Manali to Delhi.
By taxi to Chandigarh and then train to Delhi.



Spiti valley tour map

Map of our classic tour to Spiti Valley


Spiti valley tour map

Map of Spiti tour - Legend

    Town
    Motorable road
    Trekking trail
    Monument
    Interesting village

    Camping spot
    Noticeable peak
    Mountain pass
    National Park


Day 1

Delhi

Lodhi garden delhi

Lodhi garden

A very peaceful area in the middle of the frenzy of Delhi.


Most of the international flights from Europe reach Delhi in the night
Our taxi receives you at the Delhi airport and drop you at your hotel in Delhi.

After your breakfast our guide takes you for a day visit of Delhi.
You will start with the beautiful Lodhi garden. This will help you acclimatize with the frenzy of the capital of India.

Then after your lunch in a very special place, you will move to Old Delhi to enjoy the agitation and architecture of this unbelivable neighborhood of Delhi.
Night at the hotel.
Jama Masjid delhi

Jama Masjid

In the middle of Old Delhi, this mosque was designed by the one who made the Taj Mahal.




Day 2

Shimla

Toy train Shimla

Toy train

Enjoy climbing the first Himalayan hills in a narrow track gauge train.


In the morning your guide takes you to the New Delhi station to take the train to Kalka.
You change the train at the Kalka station to board the Toy train made at the time of the British occupation.

You reach Shimla in the afternoon.
Shimla is the former summer capital of India before the independance. You can stroll on the Mall, a pedestrian area on the top of the hill. Many building reminds the very British architecture of that time.

You can choose one of the many trendy restaurants on the Mall for your dinner.
Night in a hotel.
Mall road shimla

Shimla

The Mall is just front of the church on the top of the Queen of the hills.




Day 3

Reckong Peo - Kalpa

Kinner Kailash Kinnaur

Kinner Kailash

Kalka is located front of the majestic Kinner Kailash.


Meet your Spitian guide at the hotel, he will be with you for the rest of the trip up to Manali. Together you leave Shimla after breakfast.
After going through thick forests of Himalayan Cedars, we drive down to the Satluj river which receives the water from Spiti. We will follow this river for the next two days.

Quite a long drive today, going through a very steep gorge.
After reaching Reckong Peo it takes about half an hour to reach our hotel in Kalpa, a much better place for the night.

Enjoy the view of the Himalayan range from Kalpa. It is gorgeous. Some of the peaks arounds reach the height of 6500 m !
Kalpa, Kinnaur

Hotel in Kalpa

You can now feel the size of the Himalayas.




Day 4

Nako

Road to Spiti valley

On the way to Nako

You won't resist using your camera going through these scenic landscapes.


Spiti being an area next to the border with China, foreigners needs a permit to access this restricted area.
So, after leaving Kalpa, you should reach the concerned office in Reckong Peo. It will take around an hour to make your permit.

Shortly after leaving Peo, you will notice that the weather gets clear and the vegetation gets scarce.
Leave the monsoon behind, you are gradually entering the dry area of the Tibetan plateau.

And so, the landscape dramatically change ! The mountains show everything about their geological history for the pleasure of your eyes. Nako is located quite high on a mountain from where the views is stunning. Enjoy the sunset.
Nako, Spiti

View from Nako

The night at Nako will give you a feeling of what's next !.




Day 5

Tabo

Road trip to Spiti valley

Reaching Spiti

This relatively short drive to Tabo will amaze you !


From Nako you drive down again to the river and then continue the gradual climb to the Spiti valley.
After a couple of hours of amazement, you finally reach the first village of the Spiti area : Tabo.

The village is located on the left bank of the Spiti river at an altitude of 3290 m and between two steep mountain sides.
Although a few tens of families engaged in agriculture work are settled in Tabo, everything seems to be there for the monastery, like a medieval castle surrounded by houses of peasants.

Your hotel is at the center of the village near the monastery. Meet some of the monks, or perhaps even the Lama, the head of the monastery.
Tabo, Spiti

Tabo

View of Tabo village and the old & the new monasteries.




Day 6

Tabo

Tabo monastery Spiti

Tabo monastery

The Tabo monastery is more than 1000 years old !


Participating to the morning prayer at the monastery would be a very nice start for your day, provided you can wake up early as the prayer starts at 6am.
In the morning we can ask the Lama to arrange a monk to guide through the monastery. A donation to the monastery is appreciated.

You have free time in the afternoon to enjoy the very peaceful atmosphere of Tabo
Taste the delicious Tibetan food, visit the library of the monastery, roam around the village, go through the fields.

You could also go the meditation caves a bit above the village. A very soothing visit !
Tabo village, Spiti

Tabo village

Take time for enjoying the pleasant atmosphere of Tabo.




Day 7

Pin valley - Mud

Dhankar village

Dhankar village

Dhankar offers an iconic view of the Spiti valley.


As soon as you are ready this morning we take the road again towards the village Dhankar.
There is a diversion from the main roads that climbs to the village. This location above the river offers a stunning view. Moreover, the village is built on a rocky peak, to add to the scenic aspect of the place.

Have your lunch at Dhankar.
After the lunch you continue and take again a secondary road that crosses the Spiti river and enters the Pin valley.

The Pin valley is all about natural beauty ! High peaks, glaciers and mountain streams.
 Pin valley - motorcycling

Reaching Mud

A biker on the way to Mud.




Day 8

Kaza - Spiti

Kaza Spiti

Kaza

The welcome gate of Kaza in the Spitian style.


The stay at Mud is less comfortable but this is where you start experiencing the local culture and hospitality.
Leave Mud after your breakfast so that you will have free time this afternoon in Kaza.

After a quiet drive in the Pin valley, you are almost at Kaza, the capital of Spiti.
Settle in your hotel for some rest and for having your lunch.

In the afternoon your guide will show you the way to the market of Kaza.
Take this opportunity to purchase your souvenirs, meet other travellers in a cafe, or send an email to your loved ones.
Kaza market

Kaza market

Kaza is the main market of the Spiti valley.




Day 9

Demul

Demul Spiti

Demul village

You are among the people of Spiti. All good !


Just behind Kaza, left bank of the Spiti river, there is an impressive plateau hung 1000 m above the bottom of the valley.
Most parts of the plateau are too elevated to be inhabited. Even then, a few villages lie on it. One of these villages is called Demul.

In rural India the more a village is remote the more the traditional lifestyle is preserved.
Today you will stay with a family of Demul, with your local guide of course.

You can roam the village, visit the fields, understand how these villagers can sustain themselves in such beautiful but inhospitable environment !
Spiti homestay in Demul

Homestay in Demul

We are sure you will enjoy the warmth of the people of Spiti.




Day 10

Komic

Spiti trek Komic

Hiking to Komic

Find yourself in the great wilderness of the Himalayas.


How was the night in Demul ? Peaceful, right ?
Get ready for today, we are going to hike through these arid mountains to reach another village on the same plateau : Komic.

Although the elevation of the trek is quite high (you will approach the 5000 m) the trail doesn't really have any difficulty.
Walk in an easy and regular pace. If you walk too fast you will be quickly out of breath due to the lack of oxygen at this altitude.

In a couple of hours you should reach the village of Komic where there is also a Buddhist monastery. You will again stay in a homestay tonight. If you have time you can be around the monastery for the sunset, it is very scenic from there.
Komic monastery

Komic monastery

The monks at Komic will be glad to show you their monastery.




Day 11

Kye monastery, Kibber and Kaza

Kye monastery

Kye monastery

One of the most beautiful monastery in the Western Himalayas.


After your breakfast at the homestay, you can discuss the today's program with your guide.
Tonight you will be staying in your hotel in Kaza. So what could you do today?

Why don't you start sending a postcard from the Hikkim post office the highest in the world.
After that you have two options : Visit the village of Kibber and to visit the Kye monastery, the largest center for teaching of Tibetan Buddhism in India.

You can easily do both, but perhaps you will prefer to spend more time in the monastery ! You could also be back on time in Kaza if you need to go to the market again.
Kibber Spiti

Kibber village

Kaza is the main market of the Spiti valley.




Day 12

Losar

Way to Kuzum pass

The way to Losar

Unbelievable road towards the sources of the Spiti river.


Take your time this morning, there is not much drive today.
We have to reach Losar which is the last village of Spiti before the Kunzum pass and the Lahaul area.

The road to Losar is very beautiful. The spiti river has dug stunning rock formations in the valley.
Because it doesn't take much time to reach, you can ask your guide to stop anytime to enjoy the places on the way and for photography.

Have your lunch at Losar. In the afternoon you can relax at the guesthouse or ask your guide to take you for a walk around.
Kibber Spiti

Anytime break

To enjoy the fascinating sceneries of the upper Spiti valley.




Day 13

Chandratal lake

Kunzum pass

Kunzum pass

Stop at the Kunzum pass and meditate for some time.


After a night in Losar you have enough time to reach the Kunzum pass, and continue on foot up to the Chandratal lake.
You could also go with the vehicle that will have to reach there anyway. But if you feel physically fit enough today, we really recommend you to go on foot.

It takes only around 3 hours, and the view is too unbelievable on the way.
As we cross the Kunzum pass, the atmosphere changes abruptly. Very high mountains covered by large glaciers, very steep valleys, mountain streams everywhere.

The only way to stay is to camp about one kilometer from the lake. We recommend you to go to the lake (on foot) for sunset.
Chandratal lake

Chandratal lake

A unique protected Himalayan environment for your eyes pleasure.




Day 14

Manali

Leaving Chandratal

Leaving Chandratal

After an early morning hike to the lake again ?


If you wish, in the morning you can go again to the lake to see it with another light, it is so scenic.
Shortly after that you need to leave for a special drive.

Although the distance to cover today is not much, the road conditins are so bad that it takes a lot of time.
After every winter, the melting snow turns into powerful streams that destroy the road. At many places your driver needs to go carefully t cross rivers going through the road !

Enjoy the landscapes on the way, there is a lot of large glaciers and plenty of waterfalls. Unique ! After crossing the Rohtang pass, you back to the monsoon affected areas. There will be one hour of descent to reach Manali.
Chandra valley

Chandra valley

Descending the Chandra, before crossing the Rohtang pass.




Spiti tour - Best time to go



There are two important parameters that defines the best time to travel to Spiti.

The opening of the high motorable passes : Kunzum and Rohtang. These two passes are closed most of the time due to snow. The highest (Kunzum - 4550 m) is the most restrictive. It usually opens during the month of June and closes in October.
You can visit Spiti when the asses are closed, but then you need to reach and returm from the Shimla road.

When the passes are open, it is the monsoon season in the Indian sub-continent. So you reach and leave the country in a cloudy weather with regular rains. Nevertheless, Spiti being in the continuity of the Tibetan plateau, it is not affected by the monsoon.
It is also the time of the year when Spiti has the most pleasant temperature.

Hence the best time to travel to Spiti valley is from mid-June to the end of September.
Spiti satellite view

Satellite view

Showing the boundary between monsoon affected and not-affected areas.

Shrikhand Mahadev from Sarahan

From Sarahan

Before reaching Reckong Peo the weather is cloudy with possibility of heavy rains.




Offset your travel cabon emission.


Travelling is important in life !
A real travel is an experience of another place and another culture. Culture in its broad sense that includes everything : lifestyle, food, traditions, beliefs, languages, and so on.
Travelling is to meet, in a respectul way, to exchange and to learn. That is how Himalayan Ecotourism considers ecotourism.

Unfortunatelly we live at a time of global climate crisis. We must reduce our greenhouse gases emission in the atmosphere to the minimum, whereas most of travel modes involve carbon emissions.

At Himalayan Ecotourism, we allow you to offset your carbon emission by supporting our tree plantation project in the Tirthan valley.
You have to travel by air to reach India ? You plan to travel the Himalayas by motorcycle ?
Be a responsible traveler, we strongly encourage you to offset your carbon emissions.

More information here.

Recognition of Himalayan Ecotourism

Himalayan Ecotourism Awards

Our awards

Himalayan Ecotourism is the Overall Winner of the Indian Responsible Tourism Award 2019. We are also the Gold winner in the Best Adventure Operator category.
On the international scene, we have been declared winner of the Sustainable Tourism Award 2019 by Skal International and Biosphere.
Our cooperative-based model of social enterprise and our efforts to conserve the Himalayas are the main reasons for winning these awards.
Thank you to all our cooperative members, our customers, our friends and well-wishers !