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Spiti Valley Road Trip – Shimla to Manali

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Travellers Best Choice 2020 – Trip Avisor

Thinking of planning for a thrilling Road Trip to Spiti Valley?

While Ladakh has become too popular these days, and many of us are keen to find a place that’s a little less crowded yet holds the similar beauty of the Himalayas – what can be a better choice other than exploring Spiti Valley. A cold desert mountain valley located high in the Himalayas in the north-eastern part of Himachal Pradesh, this gorgeous valley should be there on every traveler’s bucket list. The word “Spiti” means “The Middle Land”, which is the land between Tibet and India. To say the least, this Spiti Valley road trip will surely be one of the best experiences you’ve ever had!

We will start our journey from Shimla, a buzzing hill station, and move ahead to Upper Kinnaur, crossing Narkanda and Chitkul, entering the jaw-dropping Spiti Valley. We’ll explore the tiny little villages tucked in the Himalayas, walk through the corridors of the ancient monasteries, soaking in the beauty and tranquility of nature, before we finally arrive in Manali, via Lahaul district. This circuit is very popular, but we have our own way to make it unconventional. Explore the real culture and lifestyle of the community and take a step towards culture and ecology-sensitive travel. We’ll be meeting the local people of the valley, binge on their delicacies, experience their way of life and above all, learn how they value the importance of nature.

Kaza, the main town of Spiti, has been marked as a plastic-free town and you won’t really find any store selling products that have plastic covering, etc. That means there’s no mineral water bottle available as well, and you need to carry your own bottle during this trip.

Come. Join Us. Let’s Explore Together & Learn To Be Responsible Travelers!

 

Photos

Trip Details

  • Start & End PointStart Point: Shimla, End Point: Manali
  • Duration 7 Nights/8 Days ( Shimla - Manali )

Price Inclusions

  • Transport: All transport from Narkanda to Manali by Bolero / Sumo/Endeavour
  • Accommodation: All stays – Hostel / Guesthouses / Camps
  • Meals: All meals – Breakfast and Dinner
  • All tolls, Permits, parking and fuel
  • Driver allowances and stays
  • Good vibes and experience that you gain
  • An experienced trip leader from the community and Plan The Unplanned Outdoor Leader

Price Exclusions

  • Any Air/ Train / bus fare which has not been mentioned.
  • Any personal shopping of any type.
  • Any other meals / snacks during the journey etc which have not been mentioned above.
  • Any alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks.
  • Anything which has not been included above.

Group Size

  • Max number of People 10
  • We have an equal male to female ratio for most of our treks
  • We require a minimum of 4 members to confirm the event
  • In case we fail to obtain the required minimum, a full refund or the option to transfer to any other event will be provided. (Option of transfer shall be subject to payment/refund of balance amount if any)

Things to Carry

Gears

  • A rucksack bag and a day pack
  • 3-litre water bladder or water bottles
  • A sun cap and a woolen cap
  • UV protected sunglasses

Clothes

  • One cotton long sleeves and 2 short sleeve t-shirt
  • 1 fleece jacket
  • 1 heavy Thick jacket/down jacket
  • 1 pair of gloves
  • At least 2 long pants (trek pants and cargo pants are favourable)
  • 4 sets of undergarments
  • 2 pair of socks
  • A small towel
  • A rain jacket or a poncho

Footwear

  • Above-the-ankle waterproof and breathable hiking boots with good grip
  • Flip flops/sandals 

Medication as per Doctor’s recommendation

Personal Accessories

  • Toothpaste, toothbrush
  • Paper soap, or sanitizer
  • Sunscreen minimum of spf40 , lip balm, cold creams
  • Body spray
  • Led Torch Light

Spiti Valley Road Trip – 8 day itinerary

Day 1 –  A Journey from Shimla To Narkanda

Located at an altitude of 2760 mts, Narkanda is a fairly unexplored region. The clouds run through the pine trees and let the apple orchards be. Its virginity intrigued us and hence we have introduced a camping experience amidst apple orchards exclusively for you!

Once you arrive in Narkanda, you will be transferred to your camping site and meet your host for the trip. Make sure you reach Narkanda by between 9:00-10:30 AM.

After freshening up, depart for a guided tour of Kothgarh Apple Factory, which would be filled with a fresh harvest of the year, ready to be churned into lip-smacking recipes.

The evening will be lit with in-house bonfire and interaction with co-travelers.


Day 2 –  Travel to Chitkul

Chitkul is the ‘first’ wooded village sloping towards the mystic valley which shares the Himalayan borders with China. A little walk in the village will expose you to the primitive and tough Himalayan life. This self-sustaining village will charm you infinitely. The journey from Narkanda to Chitkul will take about 5 to 6 hours, and you’ll be absolutely charmed on the way!

On arrival, check in to your view rooms of the mystic Chitkul valley, and your trip leader will lead a hike up through the village to the adjoining mountains of the Kinnaur Kailash Range for a sneak peek deeper into the valley after lunch.

Freshen up on your return and laze around the valley in the evening, sharing your experiences with your travel buddies!


Day 3 - Travel to Nako via Kalpa

After an early breakfast, we head towards upper Kinnaur. On the way, we shall stop by Kalpa for lunch and to witness the magnificent piece of architecture – The Kalpa Buddhist and Hindu Temple complex.

Walk around the breezy terraces overlooking the town and watch the drama in the narrow streets. Drive to Suicide Point and Roghi village. The most fascinating feature around this area is the sudden change of topography from the lofty green Himalayas to sudden steep Himalayan drops. It is indeed jaw-dropping!

After reaching Nako and checking in, put on your walking shoes for a village walk with your Trip Leader. Visit the monastery overlooking the village and further walk to Nako Lake. Autumn is the perfect time to find a crisp mirror image of the rolling deserts in the water.   

By evening, this windy desert village will witness the beauty of the fluttering under prayer flags dispersing the blessings all over where you can stand and pray for your loved ones.  


Day 4 – Travel to Mudh – The Unexplored, Pin Valley via Dhankar

On crossing Lingthi Bridge, one enters the unexplored Pin Valley National park, rich with its flora and fauna, the valley remains secluded from the rest of Spiti. Mudh, the base of Pin Parvati Trek, is a beautiful settlement right at the T-point of Pin river which makes it the last village of Pin Valley National Park.

After breakfast, we depart for Gue Monastery, 12 km from Nako, known for the Lama mummy of Samgha Tenzin. It’s an interesting fact as to how lamas with a great mind already know their date of death and prepare their bodies for the same. You’ll get to know more about this when you’re there.

Your next stop will be Dhankar Gompa, a peaceful complex tucked in the crevasse of these cold deserts. After lunch, we head towards Pin valley and halt straight to Mudh crossing over the Pin River. An interaction session with esteemed locals displaying their authentic dresses and ornaments.  Enjoy your evening experiencing the Cultural dance, with locals in their traditional attire to the local beats!

Day 5 – Travel to Kaza – The Ultimate Himalayan town and the most buzzing destination in Spiti Valley

Early morning, gear up with your cameras and walking shoes, for a small hike from Mudh towards the Pin valley. Colorful Himalayan meadows with cattle grazing there will surround you in silence.

After breakfast, we’ll depart for Kaza or ‘Kaja’ as the locals say, is the headquarters of Spiti Valley in the Lahaul and Spiti District. The town is well developed with almost all infrastructures, amidst a dry cold desert. Kaza has a lot to offer in terms of culture and belief, besides the shopping arcades, Cafés and eating joints. You’ll surely keep drooling over the momos and hot chocolate that you’ll find there!

In the evening, get ready for a welcoming cultural dance performance prepared by the local ladies and kids exclusively for you, in the starry chilled night.

Day 6 – Exploring the tiny Hamlets of Spiti – Langza, Hikkim, Komic, Key and Kibber

After breakfast depart from Kaza into real Spiti. Head to Langza, Hikkim, and Komic in a circuit and have a chance to spot some fossils embedded in the soil. Head to the very iconic Key monastery, which is located at an altitude of 4166 mtrs, and was founded back in the 11th century.  Being the oldest alongside the Spiti river, the monastery has an entire complex for lamas to live, study and practice.

Beyond Kaza, the landscape is studded with some small settlements at a God-forbidden altitude. These places still bear a post office, a police station, school, primary health department, and a bus stand, functioning like in your city. This area has been declared as a fossil spotting site, taking us back to the history of medieval time. These clusters are spread along the contours, with dwarfed mud structures made from the context itself. The first sight of these settlements from a distance leaves a person speechless, and then turns him/her into a storyteller!

Day 7 - Head off to Chandrataal – A blessing from the moon

Early after breakfast, we’ll depart for Chandrataal – a turquoise blue lake under the sky in the shape of a crescent. The name ‘Chandra Taal’ means the Moon Lake – and we believe that just explains the celestial beauty of the lake. One has to hike a bit to reach the lake from the parking area, and you’ll be absolutely stunned to see the gorgeousness of the place.

You can sit by the lake and meditate for some time, or walk around, soaking in the beauty.

Day 8 - Return Back to Manali via Rohtang Pass

After breakfast, we’ll head towards Manali, pausing at Rohtang Pass. Manali is a resort town nestled in the mountains near the northern end of the Kullu Valley in the Beas River Valley. The drive from Batal to Manali is adventurous indeed. We’ll be there by afternoon, and the evening would the time to celebrate with the great gang!

Manali has some amazing cafes and pubs, and since it’s the last night – there has to be some fun before we wrap up and bid goodbye.

FAQ

I'm a solo traveller, Can I join?

The interesting thing about traveling alone is that you get to meet new people from  diverse backgrounds, and towards the end you are no longer strangers. Hence solo travelers are always welcome to join us on our trips. Read more about solo travelling here and get inspired! https://www.plantheunplanned.com/solo-yet-accompanied/ 

Is it safe for Women/Girls?

Safety and security is our priority at all times. Hence it is absolutely safe for women/girls to join us on our treks and travels. Our trek leaders accompany the team at all times, and our campsites are secured and safe for accomodation. We also have female trek leaders who accompany on most of our treks.

 

Do I have any other boarding points apart from the ones mentioned?

Yes, we do have options for picking a traveler on board with a few locations provided they are on the route to our destination. Following are the same:

  • Croma Store, Sony World Signal

  • Trinity Circle Metro Station

  • Yeshwanthpur Metro Station

  • Goraguntepalya Metro Station

  • Nayanadahalli Metro Station

I have booked the trek when will I get further updates regarding the trek?

Well, most of our treks are usually confirmed by Thursday and you would receive a BON VOYAGE mail that would contain details as regards Pickup Points ( Location and Timings ), Outdoor Leader ( Point of Contact ), Do’s and Don’ts. You’ll be added to Whatsapp Group for all the further updates.

How do I avail discounts? 

Details for availing  discounts are mentioned in the following link, https://www.plantheunplanned.com/membership/

What is cancellation policy?

Himalayan/ Backpacking Trip Refund/Cancellation Policy

Intimation Period* Cancellation Fee**
30 days or more 10% of the total invoice value
Between 15-29days 50% of the total invoice value
Between 0-14 days 90% of the total invoice value
  • *Intimation Period means the number of days before the tour is scheduled to start
  • **Cancellation Fee is the amount of money that will be deducted from the total billing amount before offering a refund.
  • Booking Fee is not refundable
NOTE:
  • Last-minute cancellations due to work, health issues, etc., any kind of emergencies will not be entertained and no refund or transfer shall be allowed for the same.
  •  
  • You can transfer your bookings to anyone who is willing to join the event to avoid loss of money!
  • The tickets once booked cannot be moved to any other dates.

 

In the rare event that we cancel your trek, this is the cancellation policy we follow:

 In case we cancel a trek because of natural calamities (thunderstorms, floods, landslides, earthquakes) or unexpected political unrest, curfews, local riots, government orders, forest department orders, Plan The Unplanned shall issue a VOUCHER for the full amount of your ticket.

Note: The Voucher has a validity of 1 year and it can be redeemed at any point in time.
A prior intimation as regards which trek you wish to join can be communicated to us over mail or phone

In a case where we cancel your trek, due to a limited number of bookings for a particular batch or we do not have the minimum number of required people:

PLAN THE UNPLANNED shall offer a 100% refund of the trek fee ( No transactional/internet handling charges shall be deducted)

 

 

For more queries please visit our Frequently Asked Questions ( FAQ's).

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2 Reviews
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Niket Jain

Solo Traveller

Had a lot of fun on my Spiti Circuit with Plan The Unplanned.
Best Accomodations, best transport facility, superb food, great adventure, tones of memories.
Must go.
Plan the Unplanned – 100% recommended.

September 27, 2019

Hirni Bhowmick

Solo Traveller

Had an awesome experience in my recent Spiti trip with them. 🙂

September 27, 2019