Leh-Ladakh, the picturesque landscape in Jammu & Kashmir, enjoys a coveted spot on most people’s bucket list. The cold desert is not only popular for its beautiful kaleidoscope but also for the Buddhist monasteries. The destination is said to have seen a surge of tourists after the film 3 Idiots, starring Aamir Khan and Kareena Kapoor Khan, was released. Even after a decade of the movie, tourists still click photos at the Pangong lake posing on a scooter, wearing a red helmet and a wedding lehenga.
If you are planning a trip soon, then here are a few things you should do.
Practise water conservation
Such advice might sound bizarre to most people – after all, who thinks about the environment on a vacation! But a small gesture can make a huge difference as the city has been going through a water crisis since a long time now. Between 2013 and 2017, the land of high passes experienced between 50 per cent and 80 per cent deficit in annual precipitation, with 2017 breaking the spell of deficit rain. The demand for water is predicted to grow to 6 million litres by 2019.
Also, according to a study by the Ladakh Ecological Development Group (LEDEG), on an average, a Ladakhi uses 21 litres of water per day during summer and 10-12 litres during winter, while a tourist needs as much as 75 litres.
Go for windcheaters instead of leather jackets
Leather jackets take up a lot of space in your bag. It is advisable to go for lightweight and foldable windcheaters and jackets made especially for high-altitude trekking, as it is equipped to protect you from the cold and is easier to carry around.
As a practice, you should also go for backpacks instead of a trolley bag as carrying it around in the mountainous terrain can get cumbersome. But it’s okay to travel with one if you are not checking out of hotels and Airbnb’s frequently.
Experiment with native cuisine
Every region has its unique flavour but we often see tourists taking Maggi breaks. If you are travelling then it is recommended that you try out the local cuisine like the cholak, sea buckthorn juice, holkur, skyu, paba, tsamik and the local drink chhang.
Avoid selfies as much as possible
The trip to this paradise is something which you should enjoy rather than being on the phone constantly. There have been cases of selfie deaths in the past, and it’s never worth going overboard in getting that perfect shot. If you must, then carry a selfie stick with you.