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Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Travel Diary: 9 things that made my visit to the picturesque Leh-Ladakh worth it

My first view of India’s crown was, well, charming and chilly. With a blanket of snow on the mountain range, my entry to Leh-Ladakh was truly promising.

Written by Goyal Divya , Edited by Parmita Uniyal | Updated: September 17, 2014 10:42:08 am

A promising entry, a scintillating view
My first view of India’s crown was, well, charming and chilly. The view from the plane was as beautiful as you can image. While planning my journey to Ladakh, the first question everyone asked was whether we are going by road or air. We were told the scenic beauty of the place could be best enjoyed while travelling by road. But for me, the experience was equally enjoyable as we flew down. With a blanket of snow on the mountain range, my entry to Leh-Ladakh was truly promising.

travel-1 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

Surrendering to Leh’s magnificent beauty
There were many things in Leh that were unique to its topography, but for me what stood out was Leh’s unparalleled ability to surprise and an explorer will bow down to its beauty again and again… and again. En route Leh’s famous Magnetic strip (more ahead) you will see this picturesque valley. If you think about it, this pic is actually misleading for the green view it’s offering. In Leh, you will hardly come across such green spots.

travel-2 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

A miracle called Magnetic strip!
Like I said, green is not the predominant colour of Leh. One of the few tourist spots in Leh, the Magnetic strip attracts people for its unique ability to defy the laws of gravity. A car, not in motion, would move up the elevated road on its own accord! Scientists have failed to deduce the reason behind this and yes it is miraculously true!

travel-3 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

Moving to my favourite spot, a filmy one though
This was probably my favourite spot in the entire trip — The Pangong Lake. The place gained popularity post the shooting of Aamir Khan’s 3 Idiots climax. However, that is not the best part about the place. The lake’s surface brimming with pristine water reflected three distinct shades of water. And the snow-capped mountains in the backdrop add to its glory. The chilling place was indeed a sight I can never forget.

travel-4 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

Aamir Khan restaurant in Leh?
And yes… There’s an Aamir Khan restaurant at an altitude of 13,940 ft.

travel-5 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

Of icy winds and hot Maggi
We next travelled to Ladakh. This shrine is located on the world’s highest motorable road at Khardungla (18380 ft) opposite the ‘Highest café in world’! With icy winds billowing mercilessly, we could stand there only for a couple of pictures (to admire its beauty in warmth) and to eat not-so-delicious but very hot Maggie!

travel-6 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

A glacier that stole my heart
En-route Nubra valley we saw this beautiful glistening glacier. As the sunrays beamed on this bounty of mother earth it was evident why this place is so picturesque. Even as our car kept moving forward I turned back for a lasting glance. Little did I know, this is just one of those many of the scenic delights in my 5-days trip.

travel-7 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

The magic of the white desert
Only last year I had been to India’s Golden city ‘Jaisalmer’ and was enchanted by the shimmering sand dunes. As I walked towards the Ladakh sand dunes in Nubra Valley, I was equally mesmerized by the white desert of this cold valley. All was same except… the sand was grey and emitted its own unmatchable sheen.

travel-8 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

Last but not the least…that double-humped camel
And while in Jaisalmer the camel I rode had just one hump… Here in Ladakh I saw a double humped camel! Trivia about this place is that this double humped camel walks exclusively on the white desert in Ladakh.

travel-9 Pic courtesy: Divya Goyal

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