JULEY, JULEY…………Ladakh is the mind blowing land – it boasts of twinkling stars, one of the highest motor able road in the world, landscapes dotted with monasteries, some of the highest mountain passes in the world, and the brightest rainbows ever! Its soundlessness and cobalt blue skies seduce tourists in no time. But be warned! There are also treacherous roads by the dozen, patchy connectivity, lack of infrastructure, and traffic jams on afore mentioned dubious roads overlooking steep cliffs and moreover tricky weather. So this article will inform you regarding do’s and don’ts in ladakh.
do’s and don’ts in ladakh
- It really requires acclimatizing to the higher altitudes in Ladakh, so give yourself adequate time and keeps hydrated (even if you don’t feel the need have water). If you reach Leh by air, stay that day and do not plan to go anywhere for that day, as you will need a day or two to acclimatize yourself. Drink plenty of fluids (that does not include alcohol), do not move much for the first two to three days. Go through my article on AMS if require. Follow
2. Visit your doctor a week before you are to leave for your Leh Ladakh Trip. Your doctor may prescribe pills to you to adjust to the high altitude. Also, take medication from the doctor for all basic ailments.
3. Medicines like Avomine (for vomiting), Diamox or Coca 6 (for Altitude sickness) etc along with your usual list of common medication is a must and should be kept handy. If you are prone to breathing issues, carry a portable oxygen cylinder.
4. Respect nature in Ladakh. If you can’t contribute to improving it, then don’t even think of spoiling it.
5. Ladakh is a cold desert and has its own limitations like lack of water and other resources. Practice your expectation to match with limitations.
6. Always carry and eat Dry fruits (almonds, nuts etc) and/or chocolates for instant energy replenishment.
7. Using Google Maps download and save the area maps for using them offline. It’ll help you and save you from getting confused.
8. Ladakh has very limited mobile services and mainly BSNL Postpaid will work. Airtel postpaid may work in towns like Leh but not beyond.
9. Ladakh should be a memorable trip. Make it beautiful with beautiful pictures. I bet you will always cherish your every moment!
10. Use vehicles, which have good-ground clearance and are in good condition.
11. There is an electrical problem in Leh, so it is better to take extra batteries for digital products like camera, mobiles phones, etc. Charge them fully before leaving for the tour. You may not get electricity at some remote places and also because of the cold, the battery gets discharged soon.
12. Those who take a flight to/from Leh, make sure you reach the airport early and/or web-check in to ensure you get a window seat. The view from the aircraft is so spectacular; you simply can’t afford to miss it.
13. Carry warm clothes/raincoat handy with you at all times as weather in the mountains is unpredictable.
14. Ensure you have sufficient fuel for the distance till the availability of the next fuel pump. Sometimes, the distance between the availability of fuel can be in the range of hundreds of kilometers depending on the planned route, so stocking up on fuel is essential.
15. Carry all necessary permits (with multiple photocopies) with you to be submitted at various check-posts as well as identification documents like a driving license, aadhar card, voter id card, etc.
16. Ensure you carry all necessary medication in a medical kit. For a basic list of medicines, click –
17. It is advisable to travel as light as possible and to use back-packs and ruck-sacks instead of suitcases and trolley bags as the former cause less exertion and also leave the hands free to clamber over landslides with your luggage, if required as well as to carry luggage up and down from the rooms to the vehicles and vice versa. To know more what to carry click below link-
18. Carry comfortable footwear which is easy to walk in and also to remove and wear. The trip will involve a fair amount of walking and also footwear will have to be removed a number of times while visiting any monastery, so a good mix to suit the two requirements is advisable. For bikers, shoes are a must, along with protective gear.
19. Carry sunscreen and sunglasses as the sun can be quite harsh. Do keep sunscreen lotion (at least SPF 30) and apply generously to protect your skin.
20. Respect your pristine and serene surroundings and avoid loud music, singing and screaming as it disturbs other visitors as well frightens off the wildlife.
1. Don’t rush to arrive at your destination. Ladakh has splendor at every point. The roads can be a feast to eyes at several instances (courtesy: BRO).
2. Ladakh is beautiful but is slowly being killed by worthless tourists. Do not litter. Please! Carry garbage bags with you and empty them in dustbins.
3. Consuming alcohol in higher altitudes escalates the probability of getting sick faster than usual. Try to avoid it.
4. Since a lot of tourists visit the region, there are several instances where groups indulge in clashes on petty issues. Be patient and skip the argument.
5. Do not buy travel tickets or book transportation with dealers and tour operator. Self-arrange tour programs are 70% cost effective.
6. Do not forget to check your travel documents before starting the journey and update all important telephone numbers in your diary, apart from storing emergency numbers (Police assistance, Ambulance service, local contact person etc.) in your cell-phone, if you choose to carry one.
7. If you are on prescription medication, please do not forget to carry all medicines.
8. It is best not to ignore any signs of discomfort or symptoms of the beginning of AMS like dizziness, nausea, headaches, irritability, etc.
9. Avoid plastic bags as plastic is banned in Ladakh. Even if carried, the bags must be brought back and disposed of after returning. Do not touch Thankas or statues or frescoes in monasteries or heritage sites and avoid smoking on the premises.
10. Before clicking pictures, ask for permission from people who you plan to click and also check the rules of photography at monuments. Photography is prohibited at some places en route as well, like bridges, etc. which are important from security and military point of view.
11. Please respect Ladakhi culture. Do not make fun of them. Do not try to encourage them with your western outlook. They are happy the way they are, in their natural form of culture.
12. Leh/Ladakh is a place where you simply don’t go for 4 day/5 night packages. This is not Andamans; there’s much to see, behold and, of course, prepare for even when you’ve reached. Go for at least 10 days.
13. Rather than relying on ATMs for ready cash, it’s advisable to carry more cash. Just to comfort you, there are now 4-5 ATMs in Leh, so you wouldn’t be totally out of money.
Happy journey to Ladakh. Maa ldemoduk-ley.