Lahul & Spiti – Travel in India


These are 2 valleys in the northern part of Himachal Pradesh. Most tourists are unaware of these areas as 6 months of the year, the roads are closed and the climb is difficult. If one plans to visit Kulu- Manali in summer, one must include Lahul & Spiti in their itinerary. If these 2 valleys are excluded it’s like returning from the gates of heaven. Only a person who has visited here will be able to define its beauty.


To go to Spiti, one has to wait till the end of June. Till then, all the roads are covered in snow. It is virtually impossible for tourists to visit here at any other times except June and October.


If you are planning a long holiday in these mountains, first reach Kulu, visit around there and then at the end of June or beginning of July, once you get news of Lahul Spiti roads becoming operational again, plan a trip. The rainfall in these valleys is almost nil. So till August the roads are absolutely clear. This is because the Peerpanjal Mountains obstruct the rain clouds from coming over. Hence, when on one hand it is biting cold, on the other hand, when the sun shows itself, it is scorching hot. The weather is very unpredictable here. Hence, one has to be totally prepared with summer and winter clothes and particularly a windcheater. The best way to get there is from Manali. Buses ply from there.


After a 2-3 hour drive, one reach Mari. Mari is the main gateway for the Rohatang Pass, which is in the PeerPanjal Mountain. This Pass is about 2.5 kms long and when one crosses it, the Lahul & Spiti valleys start. Once upon a time the road to Rohatang Pass was extremely difficult, but now a concrete road has been laid. Apart from travelling by bus, one can also go in a jeep, on a pony, or by foot. The ride on a pony is the best, as this is not tiring and the sights are not missed.


Crossing the pass is also an experience in itself. The feeling is one of crossing the world on a bridge. This pass is 3048 mts above sea level. In some parts it is 4000 mts above sea level.


Once the pass is crossed, one reaches 2 roads. One goes east to Spiti valley and one northwest to Lahul. You can take either one. The main place in Lahul is Kyelang and the main spot in Spiti is Dankhar – both have buses from here.


If you take the Kyelang route, the bus travels along the river Chandra. On one side is the river, on the other, mountains reaching the skies. Kyelang is the heart of Lahul . It is also the main district of Lahul & Spiti. Making it your central point, you can visit the areas close by.