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Seven Road Trips in India

The whole world is yours when you have wheels on your leg! These road trips are more than 500 km long, so you can easily cut off, relax and take one day, one place at a time. Here are spectacular seven road trips in India.  

Leh Ladakh Road Trip

Leh Ladakh Bike Ride from ManaliSandwiched between the striking Tibet to the east and Kashmir to the west, how can a place not be Ladakh! If you find yourself amidst almost barren jagged peaks, crisscrossed high passes, colour-filled Gompas (Tibetan Buddhist monasteries), white-washed stupas, fluttering flags, and cold desert climate, you have crossed into Ladakh. A road trip to this beautifully arid land is compulsory. 

Other reasons to explore Ladakh by road trip are its clear skies that mirage themselves like heaven, valleys that go deep down into the earth, and mountains that rise as far as an eye can see. On this adventure, you will meet people and animals, savour Tsampa and Chang, experience the purity of religion, and see Indus, Zanskar, Shyok, etc., rivers literally serving the union territory like mothers.

You would want to cover as much as you can in a minimum number of days, but be wary of the union territory’s average high altitude (a little less than 6000 m). Go slow so as not to get sickened by AMS.

Leh Ladakh bike Trip from Manali with Plan the Unplanned

Things to Do and Places to Visit in Ladakh

  • Shanti Stupa
  • Pangong lake
  • Magnetic Hill
  • Relish Thukpa
  • River rafting at the world’s highest river-rafting point, Sangam
  • Watch the double-humped (Bactrian) camels found exclusively at Nubra valley
  • Thiksey Monastery
  • Markha Valley
  • Tso Moriri Lake
  • Nubra Valley
  • Hemis National Park
  • Royal Leh Palace
  • Namgyal Tsemo Gompa
  • Zanskar Valley
  • Stok Palace

Days: 15-18 days

Route1: Delhi – Jammu – Srinagar – Kargil – Leh – Khardungla – Diskit – Hunder – Nubra Valley – Pangong Tso – Pangong – Karu – Sarchu – Manali – Delhi
Route2: Delhi – Manali – Sarchu – Pang – Leh – Khardungla – Hunder – Nubra – Pangong – Leh – Kargil – Srinagar – Jammu – Delhi

Leh Ladakh Road Trip

Spiti Road Trip

Spiti Valley Road Trip
Spiti valley’s harsh and desolate climate uninvites you. But for the adventurous soul that rests inside you, a road trip is manageable. And why not? It is ‘the land of lamas‘ and translates to ‘The Middle Land’ for its geographical position between Tibet and India. To your bliss, it is the least populated region of India, an area that lets you connect with nature. 

Rowdy buses and rickety cars will ply the road at varying frequencies, but you take the one that suits your soul. You will find semi-nomadic Gaddi sheep and goat herders flocking in the valleys. Look at the beauty: it’s a cold desert mountain valley and still life-giving. While scrambling the Spiti valley on a road trip, take stops at locations of minimal disturbance. Who are we to guide? You are a road tripper who will always rest in the prettiest nest!

Spiti Valley Road Trip with Plan the Unplanned

Things to Do and Places to Visit in Spiti

  • Key Monastery
  • Tabo Monastery
  • The Pin Valley of Spiti
  • Pin Valley National Park
  • Buddhist Monasteries
  • Village Of Giu
  • Baralacha Pass
  • Yak Safari
  • World’s Highest Post Office

Days: 9

Route: Delhi – Chandigarh – Arphu – Sangla – Chitkul – Nako – Key – Losar – Chandratal – Manali

Spiti Road Trip

Arunachal Pradesh Road Trip

Rent a Royal enfield and ride to Bumlas pass in TawangLargest and youngest among the northeastern seven sister states, Arunachal Pradesh, is where you will find indigenous people adorned with delicate tattoos and fierce piercings on the forefront; in the background, you will identify innocent endeavours, soulful talks and proud generations. It is ‘the land of Dawn-lit mountains’. Arunachal Pradesh has inherited many ethos and cultures from its neighbouring countries – Myanmar and Bhutan. Who would not want to explore the land whose only major religion is worshipping nature? 

To our relief, Arunachal Pradesh has excellent road connectivity. Tick your much-awaited road trip to Arunachal Pradesh this year.

Tawang Valley Road Trip with Plan the Unplanned

Things to Do and Places to Visit in Arunachal Pradesh

  • Tawang
  • Namdapha National Park
  • Ziro Valley
  • Glow Lake
  • Roing
  • Bomdila
  • Nuranang Falls
  • Madhuri Lake
  • Golden Pagoda
  • Malinithan

Days: 8

Route: Guwahati – Kaziranga National Park – Bomdila – Tawang – Bumla Pass – Tawang – Dirang – Guwahati 

Arunachal Pradesh Road Trip

Meghalaya Road Trip

Ether skies, transparent water bodies, heavenly air and peace-loving peopleMeghalaya is veritably the sound of silence. The state is 70% covered in forest, raining like forming an ‘abode of clouds’ and bringing women to the forefront following the matrilineal system.

Owing to its cascading waterfalls, undulating hills and human-favourable climate, westerners called it ‘Scotland of the East’’, but it is much more than that. Inhabited by Garo, Khasi and Jaintia tribes, Meghalaya must be done on a road trip. You are free to decide your mode!

Meghalaya Backpacking Trip with Plan the Unplanned

Things to Do and Places to Visit in Meghalaya

  • Umiam Lake
  • Mawphlang Sacred Forest
  • Laitlum Canyons
  • Double Decker Living Root Bridge
  • Elephant Falls
  • Byrdaw Falls
  • Dawki River
  • Balpakram National Park
  • Shillong
  • Kyllang Rock
  • Nohkalikai Falls
  • Mawsmai Cave

Days: 5

Route: Shillong – Umiam Lake – Shillong – Cherrapunji – Mawphlang – Sohra – Mawlynnong – Dawki – Shnongpdeng – Krang Suri

Meghalaya Road Trip

Sikkim Road Trip

Sikking is sitting earnestly on the left arm of India, illustrating blissful and mesmerising panoramas. In its heart lies pristine valleys, thickly snow-covered peaks, stark greenery, vivacious biodiversity, sacred lakes and torrential waterfalls. 

The state, which has banned plastic water bottles in many places, is environmentally conscious. This is the time we head to Sikkim on a road trip that is so charming and still ethically sound.

Sikkim Backpacking Trip with Plan the Unplanned

Things to Do and Places to Visit in Sikkim

  • Tsomgo Lake
  • Yuksom
  • Lachung, Lachen And Yumthang Valley
  • Ravangla
  • Namchi
  • Zuluk
  • Teesta River
  • Pelling
  • Singalila National Park
  • Gurudongmar Lake
  • Khangchendzonga National Park
  • Rumtek Monastery

Days: 7

Route: Siliguri – Darjeeling – Gangtok – Lachen – Gurudongmar – Lachung – Yumthang Valley – Gangtok – Zuluk – Siliguri

Sikkim Road Trip

Uttarakhand Road Trip

Sunset at Rishikesh on Uttarakhand backpacking trip

Uttarakhand is a mystical land of colossal mountains, the birthplace of the holy river Ganga, the key state for the spread of Yoga and the capital for adventurers and religious devotees alike. The natural setting, composed terrains, sages, saints and seers of Uttarakhand make this state unique. 

The excitement to visit this state means no bound, but one must be aware of the natural disasters that have time and again crunched the balance of this state. Be careful, head out on a road trip to Uttarakhand at the right time and come back with unforgettable memories.

Uttarakhand Backpacking Trip with Plan the Unplanned

Things to Do and Places to Visit in Uttarakhand

  • Dehradun and Mussoorie 
  • Nainital and Ranikhet 
  • Rishikesh and Haridwar
  • Jim Corbett 
  • Almora 
  • Auli
  • Chakrata 
  • Chopta
  • Lansdowne 
  • Landour
  • Munsiyari
  • Joshimath
  • Tehri Garhwal 
  • Rudraprayag
  • Devprayag 
  • Rajaji National Park

Days: 10

Route: Delhi – Rishikesh – Chopta – Chandrashila – Joshimath – Auli – Kausani – Munsiyari – Binsar – Corbett – Delhi

Uttarakhand Road Trip

Karnataka Road Trip

Karnataka is the only state bordering all four states in south India. Ranging from beaches to hills, temples to heritage towns, national parks to trekking locations, Karnataka is indeed one state, many worlds. Over time it has endeared many people who rose to heights because of their works Kuvempu explained the meaning and existence; Puneeth Rajkumar, on the other hand, supported its people and gave them entertainment; Basavana fought against the caste system; C.V. Raman’s work in the field of light is unforgettable.

The 320 km coastline, waterfalls, temples, adventure and trekking sports locations call people to come out of their homes and take a road trip in Karnataka. There are many road trip circuits in Karnataka. You can even go on smaller ones. But if you pack yourself for ten days, there will be so much to see and explore. 

Karnataka Road Trip with Plan the Unplanned

Things to Do and Places to Visit in Karnataka

  • Coorg
  • Kabini
  • Jog Falls
  • Shimoga
  • Mangalore
  • Karwar
  • Gokarna
  • Bandipur National Park
  • Dandeli
  • Hampi

Days: 10

Route1: Bengaluru – Kodagu – Mangalore – Udupi – Chikmagalur – Shivamogga – Bangalore

Karnataka Road Trip – Route 1

Route 2: Bangalore – Shivamogga – Murudeshwar – Gokarna – Hampi – Chitradurga – Bangalore

Karnataka Road Trip – Route 2

Finally, you can use this snippet of seven road trips in India to plan your trips. Download and save it in your favourites, and plan your road trip soon:

7 Road Trips in India- Summary

“You may not find a path, but you will find a way.”

We hope this list of seven road trips in India stirred your travel lust. This is just the beginning. Twenty-nine states, 3.287 square kilometres and infinite possibilities. Which road trip are you planning in future, and which one is your favourite to date? Please write in the comments and tell us. 

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About the author

Supriya is currently based in Bangalore. She loves the art of observing things and wants to fill all her days with poetry and travel. Her works have been published in 2 books namely - The Fragrance of life and Ikigai. Her articles have also reached the audience through the Women's Web, Asailor and Tripoto platforms. Know her better: https://linktr.ee/emo_travellin.

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