Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas Day 7
Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas Day 7
Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas Day 7

Hemis Festival Ladakh
Moday 10 June – Sunday 23 June 2024

Hemis Festival Ladakh Monday 10 June - Sunday 23 June 2024

Join the festivities - The Annual Hemis Festival in Ladakh, famous for its breathtaking landscapes, the crystal-clear skies, and Buddhist Monasteries. Experience the yawning valleys and rivers with glacial origins etched into their troughs; ever prevailing prayer flags wielded by the wind beside a medieval monastery; in the undercurrent of it all is a simple perspective into a parallel world with cultural influences from Yarkhand, Baltistan and Xinxiang. In the vast hinterland of Ladakh’s primarily impenetrable terrain, to the North of Leh, lies a reclusive, deeply engraved valley brimming with natural, austere, and desolate expanses of wild beauty. Shyok and Nubra rivers are etched amidst the painted peaks and troughs of the Karakoram Range. Turning back time to when the land and its local communities thrived on the legendary trans-Himalayan trade and commerce, the birth of which can be traced to the Silk Route. All to be discovered in your journey to the most fascinating.

14 days
London – New Delhi – Nimmu – Phey - Nubra - Leh – New Delhi - London

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Itinerary View Map

Day 1 : Departure for Delhi

Departure for Delhi.
If you travelling from the United Kingdom please contact us for flight options from London Heathrow or regional airports.


Day 2 : Delhi

Arrive Delhi in the morning. Meeting, assistance on arrival and transfer to Hotel Oberoi Maidens for overnight stay. In the afternoon take rickshaw ride through old Delhi and a guided tour of the Red Fort. B

Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas hero 3

Day 3 : To Nimmu

Take amongst the most beautiful flights over the Himalayan ranges, take a window seat to observe the landscape change below from the great Indian plains to Alpine green mountains as you fly over Himachal in to the Cold desert of Ladakh where the starkness of the mountains humbles you. Meeting assistance and transfer to Nimmu House. Lunch amidst an Apricot & Apple Orchard.

As we have had an altitude shift from 300m to 3000m, it is imperative that we acclimatize and take it easy, allowing our body to adjust to this shift. Spend the afternoon reading a book or take a nap or just soaking the landscape. In the evening take a Momo (dumpling) making class to begin our immersion in to this land. Dinner & bonfire at hotel B, L, D

Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas Day 5

Day 4 : Nimmu

Wake up for a Pranayam class in the in-house yoga Shala. Meet with a Buddhist scholar for breakfast to understand the simplistic teachings within the complex philosophies of Tibetan Buddhism, before we make our way to one of the most important temple complexes in Ladakh, Alchi Choskor: Mistaken by many to be a monastery, Alchi is a temple complex still under debate by researchers on when the complex was really built, the debate ranges from the early 11th century to the 13th century. Historically, the locals believe that the complex was created by Lotsawa Rinchen Zangpo as a part of 108 temples built by him in the Himalayan region. However, a closer look at some of these murals reveal a more complex legacy reflective of the diverse cross-cultural influences on Ladakh, which included but was not restricted to Kashmir, India & Tibet. The Alchi Choskor, ‘sacred enclosure’, consists of six temples in the shape of a mandala (a mandala as a symbol in a dream, representing the dreamer's search for completeness and self- unity) to explore at the heart of a mid-size eponymous village Local Ladakhi lunch at Alchi Kitchen by Chef Nilza, before we make our way back to Nimmu. Afternoon at leisure . Head out for an evening walk through the village - bursting with the vibrant colors of seasonal activity, creating an oasis of contrast amidst stark, barren terrain and green fields. While nothing grows in the winter here due to arctic temperatures come spring the land slowly begins to transform into a green oasis where plants grow in abundance. Dinner at hotel. B, L, D

Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas hero 3

Day 5 : Nimmu

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast and hike to a small village. We walk along a stream with wild flowers in bloom or trees laden with Apricot (depending the season), river Otters playing in the water while eagles soar the skies for pikas and hares that are busy fattening up for winter. A keen eye and a sharp ear may notice Blue sheep & Urial grazing the higher slopes until we reach a small grazing pasture, where stands an ancient juniper tree overlooking a narrow gorge pulling one deeper into the mountains. A natural spring leads a path up to a field at the corner of which stands a quaint house. We find a spot by the stream below the shade of aging trees to ponder on the thought. After a sumptuous picnic lunch, take a nap or read a book or walk around the village. We then hike back to the hotel dinner and a bonfire with a bottle of homegrown Apple wine.
Option to take a half-day excursion to the village that still practise the craft of metal working. Try your hand at metal working under the guidance of the blacksmith. B, L, D

Geology Field Trip to Kashmir and Ladakh hero

Day 6 : To Phey

After breakfast we visit the village of Phey to visit the SECMOL.

The Students’ Educational and Cultural Movement of Ladakh (SECMOL) was founded in 1988 by a group of Ladakhi college students who felt that the education system needed great change. For many years, SECMOL worked on reforming the government school system. At the same time, SECMOL Campus grew into an eco-village where students, staff and volunteers live, work and learn together. It’s not a conventional school, but a place to pursue practical, environmental, social and traditional knowledge, values and skills. The Campus is solar powered and solar heated; students learn ancient Ladakhi songs, dance and history alongside modern academic knowledge; and the students mainly manage, run and maintain the campus.

SECMOL strives to equip young Ladakhis and others growing up in Ladakh, especially those from rural or disadvantaged backgrounds, with the knowledge, skills, perspective, and confidence to choose and build a sustainable future. Return to the hotel for lunch. spend the afternoon with a Lha-mo or Lha - pa (a revered Oracle from the region). It is said that when the oracle gets into a trance, a spirit enters the oracle's body. Spirits that possess oracles during trance states are usually said to be from the pantheon of Buddhist deities. These oracles are said to suck out a disease from a person. The oracles also play the role of exorcist - expelling or controlling malign spirits believed to be in patients.

Overnight stay at Ladakh Sarai, where a curated chef's tasting menu awaits you. B, L, D


Day 7 : To Thiksey

As the sun rises behind the mountains, the sound of cymbals and deep chanting echoes within the walls of Thikse monastery. Novice monks serve steaming cups of butter tea and mantras wrapped in juniper incense travel through the air, kindling an ethereal state that gives you a glimpse of a parallel, monastic world.

Descend to a farm for a local Ladakhi breakfast
After breakfast we take a short drive to the village of Hemis, Ladakh’s richest monastery, also the Royal monastery of the Namgyal dynasty and only hidden monastery.

The Hemis Festival marks the birth anniversary of Guru Padmasambhava and the victory of good over evil.The festival traces its origins back to the 8th century CE. Lord Padmasambhava, also called Guru Rinpoche, protected the people by fighting against demons and dark forces. In this Himalayan kingdom, he introduced tantric Buddhism. Through a mix of Tibetan and Buddhist cultures, a new perspective on life was introduced. Ever since, people started to celebrate his legacy to keep the negativities at bay. People dress up and gather around the monastery early in the morning and begin the festivity by breaking into a masked dance known as cham – a slow dance that showcases the message that good wins over evil. During this performance, monks dress up in traditional clothes with vibrant masks along with extravagant headgears, which ooze cultural significance and meanings. Performed by lamas and monks, they represent Buddhas, dharma guardians and protectors. Return to Ladakh Sarai for the night. B, L, D

Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas Day 12

Day 8 : To Nubra

Start the morning with a relaxing yoga class followed by an early breakfast. We depart for Nubra, over the Khardung la pass(5,359 m) , once recorded as the highest motorable road in the world. As we descend the pass into the Nubra Valley, we see why the Dalai Lama named it the Valley of flowers, being the lowest valley in Ladakh it is abundant in vegetation for a cold desert. The valley is sandwiched between the Ladakh range to the south and the mighty Karakoram to the north. A two pronged valley that is divided by the Nubra and Shyok rivers, both originating from the Siachen glacier, as we descend into the valley we cross the rivers to reach the village of Sumur where we check into Lchang Nang Retreat, house of trees. Leisurely lunch and rest. In the evening take a walk up to Sumur gompa for a mindfulness meditation with a resident monk. Bonfire & drinks followed by dinner at the Lchang Nang Retreat. Post dinner enjoy sky gazing and try to spot the moons of Jupiter and rings of Saturn through the in-house telescope. B, L, D

Nubra Valley1

Day 9 : Nubra

Rise early for a yoga class if you feel up to it. We then begin our day post breakfast with a short 20 min drive to the base of Tso lake (commonly known as Yarab Tso or Tirisa Tso) followed by a short hike to the holy lake of Lohan Tso perched between two mountains. Yarab Tso lake is the holiest lake in Nubra valley, with crystal clear freshwater and a belief that one with a pure heart can see the reflection of Ensa monastery. We descend from the lake and drive for an hour to reach Charasa, probably the only village with two monasteries belonging to two different sects of Tibetan Buddhism and a palace in ruins. Before reaching Charasa there is a rock field with petroglyphs dating back to the bronze age wherein lie rocks etched by ancient man for us to decipher, with figurines of Stupa’s, Ibex, hunting scenes and writings yet to be decoded. This Ladakh's largest petroglyph site with over 4000 inscriptions. We then find a scenic spot for a packed picnic lunch before heading back to the hotel for some respite from the afternoon sun. An evening with wine and chang (local beer) and cheese at the serene Sumur Dunes surrounded by the mountains at the confluence of Nubra and Shyok rivers awaits us. (Subject to weather) Dinner & bonfire at Lchang Nang Retreat. B, L, D

Prayer Wheels

Day 10 : Nubra

Today we have 3 different options for spending the day.

1 - A steep hike to an ancient fortification that once guarded the much famed silk road, still under research followed by a packed lunch.

2 - Drive to Diger via Tsati (Rongdo village), this is where the trader caravans actually crossed over from in the ancient days & enroute visit the Khungru Monastery, a 400-year old monastery. Continue your adventure and hike up to a large Buddhist relic and visit an ancient polo ground. Arrive for lunch at the property.

3- Visit the erstwhile Baltistan, it's a stunning 3 hour drive along the Shyok river, and as the landscape changes with a drop in altitude, so does the religion shift from Buddhism to Noorbakshia Islam and the people begin speak Balti instead of Ladakhi. The Apricots of this region have been rated the best in the world.

Upon reaching Turtuk we walk through the village of Ferol to Balti Kitchen for a traditional lunch. Post lunch we take a walk through the old village of Yul to meet with the Yabgo dynasty descendant in his humble palace to reminiscence in the grandeur of the kingdom of Baltistan before it was split with Lines of Control amongst China, India & Pakistan. We then drive back for dinner to the hotel still mulling over the history of the powerful kingdoms of Baltistan.

Evening at leisure Dinner and bonfire Stargazing at the property. B, L, D

Hidden Ladakh Valleys of the Himalayas Day 4

Day 11 : To Leh

After an early breakfast and we make our way to the erstwhile capital of Leh over the Wari la pass (5312 m), this is a road less traveled and hence wildlife still inhabits the region, if lucky we can see Ibex, Marmots, Pikas, Bluesheep enroute. Visit Chemrey monastery (Optional) . A monastery not on the tourist map, but hosts some of the most beautiful sculptures of the Buddha and the gurus of Tibetan buddhism. Founded by Lama Tagsang Raschen as a dedication to King Singge Namgyal in the year 1664, Chemrey is Drukpa sect monastery. With a notably large statue of Guru Padmasambhava and a 29 volume scripture engraved in gold and silver. Arrive for a late lunch at Hotel Chospa. Evening at leisure. B, L, D

Golden Temple Monasteries and Mountains Day 5

Day 12 : Leh

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast and then visit Leh Old Town. In the pages of history, the ancient capital of Leh bookmarks one of the greatest cross-cultural crusades of its time. This historical trail traces revered palaces and forgotten forts, it visits the quiet courtyards of ancient museums and cafes rooted in romanticism... all of it, illustrating history that once existed on a grand scale! Lunch at Artisanal Alchemy, where chef Kunzes Angmo takes us through a historical journey of the Ladakhi cuisine. Once a trade post on the Silk Route, the streets of Leh still harbour bustling bazaars brimming with an antiquated charm. Walk through the cobbled streets and the hidden by-lanes that are home to Thanka shops, couture designers that work with local textile and handicrafts. Curated chef’s tasting menu awaits us for dinner Chospa Hotel. B, L, D


Day 13 : To Delhi

Transfer from hotel to airport for your flight to Delhi. Meeting, assistance on arrival in Delhi and transfer to Hotel Oberoi Maidens. Overnight stay in Delhi. B


Day 14 : Departure Delhi

Departure Delhi for your internatinal flight.
Looking to extend your holiday in India? Contact our consultants today for your option. B

Itinerary map


Price per person (Double/Twin share)
Cost includes:
  • Internal flights in economy class.
  • Accommodation as mentioned in the itinerary.
  • Meals: Delhi on bed and breakfast and Ladakh on full board.
  • All transfers and sightseeing as per the itinerary.
  • Accompanying English speaking guide
  • All Activities mentioned on the itinerary.
  • Inner line permits
  • Mindfulness meditation & Yoga
  • Entrance fees at all mentioned sighstseeing.
Cost does not include:
  • International flights please contact us for flight options.
  • Visa fee for India
  • Any expense of a personal nature
  • Tips & Gratuities
  • Travel Insurance*

The Tentative dates for the Hemis Tseschu 2024 is 16-17 June 2024. Dates confirmed nearer the time.

*Travel Insurance

It is essential to have adequate insurance in place before your departure. This should be
appropriate for your age, health and destination you are visiting.
- Make sure it includes comprehensive medical and repatriation cover.
- Make sure it provides cover for your whole trip (whether one day or over a year).
- Make sure it covers you for all activities.
- Disclose pre-existing medical conditions.
- Take your policy number and the 24-hour emergency contact numbers with you.
If you have any doubts about your cover, check with your insurer. Please note Covid-19 cover is
now available.
For a competitive quotation please visit https://www.indusexperiences.co.uk/insurance/

020 8901 7320

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