13 Days 12 Nights
Guesthouse & Hotels
Trains, Cars & Flight
The Spiti Valley is a remote location with limited tourist infrastructure, making this part of the world a little visited but rewarding destination. Voted as one of the top 10 of Lonely Planet’s ‘Best in Travel Regions for 2018’ this tour is a must for adventurers who want to see and experience the extreme beauty, remoteness and never to be repeated landscapes of the Spiti Valley.
This is how Lonely Planet writer John Noble described the Spiti Valley:
“Imagine an arid land set high in the Indian Himalaya, a high-altitude desert punctuated by small patches of green and miniature villages of white, flat-roofed houses perched below stark rocky hillsides and jagged snow-covered peaks. Picture high passes blocked by snow and ice for half the year, and scattered stabs of colour from fluttering prayer flags and precariously perched Buddhist monasteries.”
Don’t just take Lonely Planet’s word for it, come and experience the wonder of the Spiti Valley with Short Escapes today!
5 August 2018
Welcome to India! Upon your arrival at the airport in Delhi, our representative will greet you and escort you to the hotel. After checking into your hotel, spend the rest of your day at your leisure exploring the local area and relaxing in the hotel. Our friendly guide and hotel staff will be on hand should you need restaurant recommendations or general provisions.
Overnight: Hotel, Delhi
6 August 2018
Head to the iconic and bustling area of Old Delhi after breakfast. We’ll admire the magnificent Jama Masjid (India’s largest mosque) and enjoy a rickshaw tour through the ancient alleyways of Chandni Chowk bazaar. Before heading back to New Delhi we’ll pass by the fantastic Red Fort, constructed in 1638; as well as Raj Ghat, the cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi. As we continue to weave our way to New Delhi, we will pass majestic British era landmarks such as the India Gate, the President’s House, Parliament House & the Government Secretariat Buildings. Our final stop of the day is the Laxmi Narayan Hindu Temple.
Overnight: Hotel, Delhi
7 August 2018
Today we will leave our hotel in the early hours of the morning and set off for a day of exciting rail travel on the world famous Indian Railways. We will take a train from North Delhi to Kalka before transferring onto the narrow gauge ‘toy train’ Kalka-Shimla Railway. This route travels along a mountainous track known for its dramatic views of the hills and surrounding villages. This railway was built in 1898 to connect Shimla, the summer capital of India during the British Raj, with the rest of the Indian rail system. At the time of construction 107 tunnels and 864 bridges were built throughout the course of the track.
We will arrive in Shimla in the early evening in time for a dinner.
Overnight: Hotel, Shimla.
8 August 2018
After breakfast we will set off on a sightseeing tour of Shimla. Visit Kufri, Ridge Maidan, Mall Road and the impressive Christ Church. Shimla is one of the most popular hill stations in India, and with its stunning views, wide boulevards and mist covered mountains its not hard to see why. The town is situated at an altitude of 2276 metres and was initially chosen as a sanatorium for invalid European officers, but soon developed into a big hill town and became the summer capital of the country during the British Raj.
Overnight: Hotel, Shimla
9 August 2018
This morning we will leave Shimla and make our way to Kalpa as we head into the beautiful Kinnaur Valley. From Kalpa we can see the spectacular Kinnar Kailash, one of the highest mountains in the Indian Himalayas at 6055 metres.
The Kinnaur Valley is known as the gateway to the remote Spiti Valley. Kinnaur is famous for its apple orchards as just about all of India’s apples are produced in this area. The cultural tapestry is rich as modernity has only touched it in the past couple of years. You will be able to observe as people go about their everyday life in their stunning traditional dress. Kalpa is surrounded by snowy peaks for most of the year, which makes for a beautiful sunset backdrop.
Overnight: Guest house, Kalpa
10 August 2018
The morning is at your leisure to explore Kalpa, before we head towards Rekong Peo. We will stop for lunch and get our inner line permit for the Spiti Valley and head towards Nako, which is located just 60kms from the Tibetan border.
Nako is a very picturesque village high in the Himalayas (altitude 3625 metres) which has an ancient monastery dating back to 1025 AD, as well as several Buddhist chortens dotted throughout the town. The villagers are extremely proud of their heritage and the town is well maintained by the local community. A pretty lake also surrounds the town and is a lovely spot for an afternoon stroll.
Overnight: Guest house, Nako
11 August 2018
Today we will take a morning drive to Tabo. Tabo is famous for its monastery, which dates back to 966AD and is a World Heritage Site. The Dalai Lama maintains that the Tabo Monastery is one of the holiest sites in the world. Due to its height at 3280 metres, Tabo has short summers and very cold winters.
Overnight: Guest house, Tabo
12 August 2018
We leave after breakfast for the drive to Kaza, stopping off on the way at Dhankar Monastery. Dhankar Monastery was built on a 300-metre high spur overlooking the Spiti and Pin Rivers. It truly is one of the world’s most spectacular settings for a monastery and has many holy stories attached to it.
In the afternoon we will bid farewell to Dhankar and head towards Kaza where we will spend the next 2 nights.
Overnight: Guest house, Kaza
13 August 2018
We will spend the day around Kaza, exploring the local Sakya monastery and the world famous Ky Monastery. This Tibetan Buddhist monastery is located on top of a hill at an altitude of 4166 metres above sea level and is 11kms from Kaza. The monastery has the distinction of being the oldest and the biggest in the Lahaul and Spiti district as well as being a religious training centre for monks. It is home to around 300 novice monks who receive their religious education here.
We will then head to the remote town of Kibber at 4270 metres for lunch and to soak in the remoteness and beauty of the Spiti Valley. With sweeping views of the mountains on one side and the Spiti Valley on the other, it is great place to relax and to enjoy the view. The Kibber area is also home to the elusive Blue Sheep, and if you keep your eyes peeled on the horizon you may see one of these shy creatures in the distance. In the late afternoon we will drive back to Kaza.
Overnight: Guest house, Kaza
14 August 2018
We will leave Kaza very early in the morning for the drive to Manali. You will pass along the valley floor before gradually rising and crossing the spectacular Rothang Pass (3980m) which offers some of the most spectacular mountain views in the world. We will stop at the pass to admire the stunning view, before continuing on to Manali and arriving by early afternoon.
Manali is nestled amongst the Himalayas on the banks of the Beas River and offers an exotic charm unlike any other place in India. Old Manali has maintained its old world charm despite modern conveniences such as the many restaurants offering a variety of local and international cuisines. The rest of the afternoon is at your leisure to explore this picturesque town or to take a well deserved rest.
Overnight: Guest house, Manali
15 August 2018
We will leave Manali after breakfast and begin our descent to the Indian plains, and to the modern metropolis of Chandigarh. The drive will take 7 hours by car. We follow the Beas River from to Manali to Mandi, passing through one of the most beautiful gorges that Himachal Pradesh has to offer. Sit back and admire the stunning views as well travel in comfort through what is known as ‘the Valley of the Gods’.
Overnight: Hotel, Chandigarh
16 August 2018
After breakfast we will take a morning flight to Delhi. The rest of the day is at your leisure to relax in our modern hotel or to shop for any last minute souvenirs in the bustling bazaars of Delhi.
Overnight: Hotel, Delhi
17 August 2018
Transfer to the Indira Gandhi International Airport for your return flight home. We look forward to seeing you on another Short Escapes experience soon.
• Met at Delhi Airport by Short Escapes Representative
• 12 nights accommodation and breakfast for the duration of the trip
• Following Transportation by AC Toyota Innova or AC Tempo Traveller 9 seater Mini Bus
Pickup from Delhi airport on arrival
1 sightseeing tour in Delhi
Drop off at Delhi train station
Pickup at Shimla train station
Spiti Valley Tour (Shimla-Kalpa-Nako-Tabo-Kaza-Manali-Chandigarh)
Drop off at Chandigarh airport
Pickup and drop off to Delhi airport on departure
• Trains – Connecting train from Delhi to Shimla via Kalka
• Flights – Chandigarh to Delhi
• Entrance fees to all museums and monuments
• Local English speaking guide for the duration of the tour
• Local guide in Delhi
• Return airfares to India
• Cost of Indian tourist visa (on arrival)
• Lunch and dinner (unless otherwise specified)
• Extra activities and transport not stipulated in the itinerary
• Personal expenditure such as drinks (including bottled water), laundry service and souvenirs
• Donations to Monasteries
• Compulsory insurance of any kind