Picture a Ladakh without crowds and little development – that’s what Spiti is like. One of the highest and most remote places to be inhabited on earth, the cold desert of Spiti Valley is breathtakingly gorgeous with timber-and-mud houses sprinkled across its barren landscape. As you tread through its scattered green fields and changing hues of brown and grey, the Spiti River runs along with you. The top experiences here range from visiting the fabulous 1200-year-old Dhankar Gompa, driving through Kunzum Pass at 4551m, dropping a postcard at the highest post office in Hikkim, trekking to Dhankar Lake and collecting sea fossils near the village of Langza. The best way to enjoy Spiti is to go on a bike adventure, cruising through its broken trails and stopping at the villages to chat with the locals. Go with an open mind, for you will return with inimitable experiences that will stay etched in your memory forever.
If you want to experience the magic of Ladakh without all the tourist crowd, then Spiti is the place to be. With its pristine environment, Buddhist architecture, and Tibetan culture, it is fast becoming a popular destination for backpackers from across the country. Here are Tripoto's picks for the must-visit destinations in Spiti.
Peak Season to visit Spiti is from mid-May to mid-July, when the weather is bearable and warm and all passes, link roads and hotels are open for visitors.
Shoulder Season: September to late October, which is the autumn season when the roads are strewn with leaves and the Spiti River is a beautiful turquoise colour. It can get quite cold night, almost two to three degrees, so keep that in mind while planning your trip.
Off-season: April to mid-May is when the snow starts melting and a few link roads, including the one from Kaza to Losar, open. The few homestays and hotels start operations in June, and this is also the time when major passes, such as the Kunzum Pass, open. So if seeing snow-covered peaks is on your bucket list, then this is a good time to go.
Budget for Spiti Valley
For Budget Travellers: INR 600-1000 a day
Accommodation in hostels and guesthouses: INR 400-700
Food: INR 200-300
For Mid-range Travellers: INR 2200-4000 a day
Accommodation in mid-range hotels: INR 1500-2700
Food: INR 700-1000
For Luxury Travellers: INR 4500 and upwards
Accommodation in high-end hotels: INR 3000 and upwards
Food in hotel restaurants and bars: INR 1500 and upwards
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