The Hidden Himalayan Motorcycle Tour

The Hidden Himalayan Motorcycle Tour

15 Days – Including 11 Days of Riding

Chapter: WORLD’S HIGHEST VILLAGES & OLDEST MONASTERIES

IDEA BEHIND THE ROUTE

 

This route takes you beyond the very popular Spiti region in the Himalayas. Himalayas are about exploring the hidden secrets of the mountains. Himalayas are about venturing out into the unknown; more about seeking out for places that are ‘not’ on the tourist map!

It covers the massive landscape and adds a cultural flavour to it. We ride on one of most dangerous roads in the world and also visit local villages, the families and schools, try our local food flavours. We explore the lifestyle of the HIGHEST HABITATIONS IN THE WHOLE WORLD!


DIFFICULTY LEVEL: CHALLENGING

For physically fit riders, who have extensive experience in off-roading in the WORLD’S MOST DANGEROUS ROADS.

We mainly ride on small hilly, rocky and sandy tracks and there is also a high possibility of crossing water streams. You will also be travelling in very high altitude (more than 4000m) for long period of time, making the ride even more difficult.

 

THE MACHINE: ROYAL ENFIELD 500cc

Our fleet consists of Royal Enfield Classics 500cc and Machismos 500cc, all in good conditions. The motorbikes have a European style gear shifting system (left side, first gear down) to ensure comfort and safety of our riders. We also provide luggage carriers fitted which are very helpful for longer distance trips.

 

THE ORGANIZATION & LOGISTICS

Your tour leader will be a very experienced rider who speaks English and the local dialects, and is familiar with the area you will visit. He will also be in-charge of the support team that includes mechanic, driver, helpers, and makes sure that the group travels safely.

Although, the tour leader knows the places well, please note that he is not a local guide, so, for your convenience, we advise you to bring a pocket guide with you.

The entourage comprises of a tour leader and a well experienced mechanic. A support vehicle will be provided to carry the luggage and the mechanical equipment. The van can also accommodate participants (who must be registered with a pilot) if they choose to enjoy the ride in the comfort of a van.

 

Detailed Tour Program

OVERVIEW OF THE PROGRAM

Region: Himalayan State of Himachal Pradesh, India

Total Duration: 15 Days (11 Days of Riding)

Meeting Point: New Delhi

Riding Start / End Point: McLeodganj, Himachal Pradesh / Manali, Himachal Pradesh

Approx. Total Distance: 1,000 kms. / 625 miles

Highest Altitude: 4,590 meters / 15,060 feet

Grade: Challenging

Accommodation Type: Hotel / Tourist Lodge / Home-stay

Best Time to Visit: Mid-June to Late September

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE TOUR

 

  • Escape from the crowded routes: rivers, forests, prayer flags and beautiful mountains throughout the journey.
  • Stunning Views of Snowy Peaks of the Himalayas.
  • Ride on one of the most dangerous roads in the world.
  • Visit untouched villages, meet the locals and get to know the Himalayan culture.
  • Turquoise undisturbed High-Altitude Lakes of Chandratal & Nako.
  • Unearth the Hidden Secrets of Himalayas on the legendary Royal Enfield 500cc Motorcycles.
  • The Less-Taken High Mountain Passes – Kunzum La (15,060 ft.) & Rohtang Pass (13,054 ft.)
  • Towns of McLeodganj, Manali, Sarahan, Kalpa & Kaza.
  • Highly Qualified & Experienced Team – Tour Leader, Mechanic and Drivers.
  • Stay / Interaction with the Locals to understand their lifestyle.
  • Special Prayer Session at Tabo Monastery, World’s Oldest Monastery!
  • World’s Highest Villages – Komic, Hikkim, Kibber, Demul and more…
  • Village Charity – Distribution of Stationary in the Local School, Help Building Toilets in Village Schools, etc.

 

PRICE DETAILS (Per Person) on Request

 

INCLUDES

  • A Royal Enfield 500cc motorcycle is provided with full mechanical assistance and all spare parts.
  • Domestic Flight (DELHI – DHARAMSALA / KULLU – DELHI), or alternate.
  • All Surface Transport from Delhi to Delhi included.
  • An English speaking Tour Leader (from day 1 to day 14)
  • Fuel expenses of Motorcycles for whole journey.
  • An expert Mechanic of Royal Enfield motorcycles.
  • A Support vehicle with Spare Parts.
  • Basic Spare Repairs Included.
  • One Back-up Vehicle for Riders or Pillions to travel, in case required.
  • Telescope for Star Gazing Nights.
  • Local Family Meals and Private Prayer Session at Tabo Monastery.
  • Lodging in deluxe hotels and camps, in double bed rooms on a twin-sharing basis. If you wish to stay in a single room (extra), please inform your travel advisor at the time of registration.
  • Meals: Full board meals during all days.
  • Third party motorcycle insurance of Royal Enfield 500cc motorcycle.
  • Vehicle and Inner Line Permits for the whole tour.
  • Tips & Gratitude for staff.
  • Admission fees to various monuments, temples etc.

EXCLUDES

  • Compulsory insurances, including repatriation assistance which covers you in case of a motorbike accident in India and legal assistance.
  • International Flights and airport taxes and Visa fees.
  • Souvenirs and personal expenses.

 

 

CHECKLIST

Appropriate equipment is a component of a successful journey!
Travel light, TRY TO STAY UNDER 45 LBS (20 KGS)

BAGS:

  • A sailor bag would be perfect, a walker’s bag too (without steel bar). You can close it with a padlock if you want to (Don’t forget to tag it with your address. Also, with our office address in India).
  • A small backpack of 20 litres is advised for daily necessities such as camera, sunscreen lotion.

CLOTHES AND PERSONAL EQUIPMENT:

  • 3 light pants
  • 4 shirts (including some with long sleeves, to protect yourself from the sun)
  • 2 warm sweaters or jackets
  • Sun glasses and Cap
  • Sport shoes or trekking shoes
  • 1 litre canteen (flask) and a flashlight (don’t forget the batteries)
  • Some sweets and cereal bars

SPECIAL MOTORCYCLE CLOTHES:

  • Motorcycle boots are strongly advised or trekking shoes (waterproof)
  • Warm motorbike jacket (synthetic preferred)
  • A rain suit (just in case!)
  • Gloves
  • Bandana

PERSONAL MEDICINE KIT

  • Sun screen lotion and Lip balm
  • Broad-spectrum antibiotic
  • Paracetamol
  • Anti-diarrhoea
  • Elastoplast
  • Skin disinfectant
  • Bandages and special blisters bandage

For Any Queries, Write to us at Travel@TourDeIndia.in

DAY 1

NEW DELHI – ARRIVAL

Arrival at New Delhi Airport and transfer to Hotel for Check in. Freshen up and rest.

You can go exploring the town or even purchasing any missing gears to your baggage.

Night at the hotel.

DAY 2

NEW DELHI – DHARAMSALA (FLIGHTS)

Get Transferred to New Delhi Airport and board flights to Dharamsala. Arrive Dharamsala and get transferred to your hotel in McLeodganj. Rest and visit the town in the market. Alternatively, if flights are unavailable / cancelled, we’ll do Luxury Coach / Luxury Toyota Cars for road journey.

Overnight in Tibetan-styled hotel.

DAY 3

DHARAMSALA – TIBETAN BLESSINGS &  FEEL OF MOTORCYCLES

Meet with your machines for the first time. We drive locally to get feel of the motorcycles and see if any minor repair / changes are required. We also visit popular Tibetan Monasteries and Institutes like Dalai Lama Temple, Norbulingka Institute among others.

DAY 4

DHARAMSALA – SHOJA (210 kms. / 8 hours)

After early breakfast, we flag off our journey from our hotel in Manali. Today we go testing ourselves in the best roads of the journey. We drive along the National Highway and cross the town of Palampur. On reaching Bir, we break and take up a ‘Paragliding’ flight from Billing, renowned as Asia’s Best Site for Paragliding.

 

We further ride on Manali highway and just after Mandi, we take a detour towards the pristine Tirthan Valley. We drive to the town of Shoja and stay in a comfortable camp / guest house in the village.

DAY 5

SHOJA – SARAHAN (130 kms. / 6 hours)

After early breakfast, we start our journey of a steep ascent which leads us to Jalori pass (10,800ft. / 3,120m.). The ride goes through some amazing landscapes and lush green forests.

After the pass the road starts to descend for approx 30 kms. till we reach the Sutlej River. Then the ride goes along the river Sutlej and at a place called Jeori, we start to ascend moderately again. We reach the picturesque village of Sarahan. This place offers excellent views of the Sub Himalayan ranges, which are snow clad most of the times of the year. Overnight stay in a Hotel in Sarahan.

DAY 6

SARAHAN – KALPA (110 kms. / 4 hours)

Rise to a wonderful morning in Sarahan. Start the journey by descending again until you meet the Sutlej River. Today is going to be an amazing ride as you drive though roads cut through the rocks at a place called Taranda. After this, we enter the land of Kinnaur which is known for its vibrant and rich culture. The last half hour is a gradual ascending road from the river into the mountains. You will feel the transition as you will reach a coniferous zone.

Kalpa, at an elevation of 2758m. is nested in between rich green forest and apple plantations overlooking the mighty Kinner Kailash range. Overnight stay in a Hotel.

DAY 7

KALPA – NAKO LAKE (100 kms. / 5 hours)

Kalpa offers spectacular sights of the Kinner Kailash Range early in the morning as the rising sun touches the snowy peaks with crimson and golden light. Today’s ride goes along the Sutlej River though thrilling narrow gorges. Then at a place called Khab, you will see the confluence of two great Himalayan Rivers, Spiti and Sutlej. After Khab, it’s a curving ride with a moderate ascend. You will slowly get the feeling of transition into a barren cold desert landscape. Nako is a wonderful hidden village at an elevation of 3600 metres. There is a small lake adjoining the village, which gets its water from the glacial melts from the snow mountains above.

There is an ancient monastery located in the middle of the village. It is famous for its sculptures, murals, art works and scripture. The view from Nako is amazing as you can see snow covered mountains on both sides. Overnight stay in a Camp.

DAY 8

NAKO – TABO VIA GYU (70 kms. / 5 hours)

Get up to a wonderful morning in Nako. This village has some exorbitant charm about it. We start our ride towards Malling village and get the first taste of a stream crossing about 7 kms. from Nako. The ride then goes though narrow roads, with steep cliffs. Eventually you start to descend and again ride along the Spiti Valley. We take the route towards the village of Gyu, where there is mummy of a monk believed to be about 500 years old.

The monastery of Tabo is our stay for the day. Not only India, it’s one of the oldest operational monasteries in the world which was constructed in the year 996 A.D. Tabo has huge barren mountains and if you are lucky on your day you can even spot a Snow Leopard traversing across the hills.

Our team will organize a special prayer session for you at the World’s Oldest Monastery. Overnight at Guest House / Home-Stay at Tabo.

DAY 9

TABO – KAZA via DHANKAR & LALUNG (60 kms. / 4 hours)

We go for an early morning prayer session at the monastery and after breakfast, we ride to the Dhankar monastery, which is perched on a hill. Dhankar is indeed a fairytale setting, and from the roof of the monastery its one amazing view. We have a tea break at Dhankar. Further we drive to one of remotest village of Lalung.

We visit the 10th century monastery of Lalung with wonderfully preserved statues that look like just new! In the evening reach Kaza. Afterwards, we visit the local school and distribute some goodies to the school kids. Lunch with the local family.

Further on we ride our machines to Kaza, which is the main market of Spiti area. If you think you require any thing for your trip, there are some chances you might get it here. Overnight stay in a hotel.

DAY 10

KAZA – KIBBER – LANGZA (Kaza & Around)

The In the morning we start our journey towards some of the highest villages in the world. We explore Kaza town and the monastery. We start our ride after tea break. After about 10 kms from Kaza is the famous Kee Monastery. After visiting the monastery, we continue our journey that leads to the village of Kibber. This village is located at an elevation of 4205 metres. It is approx. 18 Kms from Kaza. The road bends away into a secondary valley leaving the main Spiti Valley behind. There are wonderful views of the main valley as you can see where the Spiti river is at its widest. Kibber is one of the highest habited villages in the world, which has a school, dispensary, post office and a community centre. It also has a polling booth. Make sure to visit the post office and write a letter home on your own address and probably by the time you reach home you will have the letter at

your post box.

 

As you drive towards the East from Kibber, there is a road which goes to the village of Gette. If you continue soon the dirt track you will reach the village of Tashi Gang. This village too is at an amazing altitude of 4500 metres above sea level. Tashi Gang is a very small village secluded away from the main Spiti valley, and has around 10 houses. The road ends here. The Village of Tashi Gang is a travellers delight, It gives a feeling of being at the end of the inhabitable world. Just half a kilometres walk from Kibber is a deep gorge, and across the gorge is the village of Chicham. There is a ferry which has to be crossed to reach to the other side of the gorge. We ride down the road towards Kaza, and just before Kaza there is another road which winds up the mountain. As you gain height the road becomes narrower but as you gain more height it starts to become flatter. At approximately 15 kms. you reach the village of Langza. At the first glance of the village, one will instantly notice a huge Golden colored Buddha statue which is believed to be around 1000 years old. All the houses in the village are built below this statue. The houses are made of mud and have prayer flags tied around them. Overnight stay at a home-stay in the village.

DAY 11

LANGZA – KOMIC – HIKKIM – DEMUL – KAZA (WORLD’S HIGHEST VILLAGES)

After breakfast, we take more ascend along the winding road, we cross over to the other side of the ridge and leave the view of Langza village behind. After about 4 kms comes the village of Hikkim. Hikkim is more famous for its World’s Highest Post Office. There is no phone signal or internet in Hikkim, so all the communication is by post. The local farmers keep their small saving at the post office. The post office was opened way back in 1983 and still serves the locals especially the monks in the nearby monastery at Komic. A few kilometres from Hikkim is the village of Komic which is the last village from this side of the route. Komic is the highest village in the world which is connected by a motor-able road. The elevation of the place is 4570 metres above sea level. Just before the monastery a road winds up the hill across the ridge, and after coving 25 Kms of relatively unexplored land with wonderful views you come across a small pass, which has a big Chorten in the centre. After crossing the pass you start to descend, and after about 4 Kms you reach the village of Demul. The altitude of Demul is around 4320 metres. The village has around 40 houses and a small school. There is another road which connects Demul with Lidang on the main highway before Kaza. Lidang is 20 Kms from Demul and all of the road is tarred. From Lidang it’s 10 Kms to Kaza.

 

KAZA – CHANDRATAL LAKE (90 kms. / 5 hours)

The ride goes though the villages of Rangrik and Losar, which are in the wider part of the Spiti valley. The valley has amazing landscapes and you are eventually following the river to its source. All along the way you are in company of breathtaking landscapes, with snow covered mountain tops at the backdrop. Then the road ascends towards the 4590m. high Kunzum pass. This is one of the most beautiful passes in the Indian Himalayas. It serves as an entrance pass to the Spiti valley from Lahaul. Goddess Kunjum (Durga/Parvati) resides in a temple on the Kunzum top and keeps guard over the pass and wards of the evil. Visitors normally do a round around the temples to seek blessings.

The top offers an enchanting view of the snow clad Chandrabhagha ranges. The Road descends till Batal, with a few stream crossings in between, and just before Batal there is a curvy rock strewn road which heads towards Chandratal. Chandratal is a pristine Himalayan lake situated at an elevation of 4300 metres. It has a circumference of about 2.5 kms, the deep blue-water of Chandra Tal Lake is the source of the Chandra river. The Chandratal lake, once a halting place for traders who went to Spiti and the Kullu valley from Tibet and Ladakh attracts a large number of photographers and adventure lovers. The mountains peaks with snow caps and slopes around the valley rise up to 3000 meters to 6300 meters. The mountain ranges are called Chandrabhaga Ranges which attract mountain lovers from all over the world. Overnight stay in camps at Chandratal.

DAY 12

CHANDRATAL LAKE – MANALI (140 kms. / 8 hours)

The day starts early today as we head for rough roads ahead. Small hamlets of Batal, Chotta Dara and Chattru fall on the way. You have the River Chandra flowing along you for the company and you have the Chandrabhagha Ranges standing mighty and tall on the other side. There are a couple of streams to be crossed today.  At a place called Gramphoo you meet the Manali – Leh highway.

We turn on towards Manali and cross over the mighty Rohtang Pass (3.980m.) to reach Manali by the evening. This marks end of our memorable journey.

We celebrate our amazing 15 days of tough riding and exploring together with our folks in a celebration gala dinner. Overnight at the hotel.

DAY 13

MANALI REST AND LOCAL

Day Free in Manali. We celebrate our success and journey. We relax and explore the popular town of Manali. We visit the centuries old Hidimba Temple, then the Naggar castle and the Naggar temple that were built in the 10th century. Night at a comfortable and welcoming hotel with bonfire and cocktails!

DAY 14

DELHI ARRIVAL

After breakfast, get transferred to the Kullu Airport and board flight to Delhi. Arrive in Delhi and get transfer to the hotel. Free day in Delhi.

You can go exploring, Old and New towns of Delhi. Delhi is home to many vibrant markets and many architectural marvels, some of them are UNESCO World Heritage Sites like Qutub Minar, Humayun’s Tomb etc.

DAY 15

DELHI – DEPARTURE

After breakfast drive to Delhi airport and flight to destination country with sweet and loving memories for life.

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