Bike Journey to the Middle Land- Spiti Valley & Chitkul

Tripoto
28th Apr 2018
Photo of Bike Journey to the Middle Land- Spiti Valley & Chitkul by Savpril Salwan
Day 1

5:00 AM: I traveled to Delhi from Dhariwal (Home, Dist. Gurdaspur, Punjab) to start the journey to the Middle Land with another rider friend Ishaan Khurana.

I reached Delhi by 7 PM.

Distance covered: 550 kms

Day 2

5:00 AM: Met Ishaan and started the journey from Gurugram.

8:15 AM: Reached Murthal and had a great breakfast.

4:00 PM: Crossed Simla

6:00 PM: Reached Narkanda

We got a beautiful stay and an amazing food in that town. For those planning to see areas nearby, Hatu peak is a good visit.

Distance covered: 500 Kms

On our way

Photo of Narkanda, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Narkanda

Photo of Narkanda, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan
Day 3

6:00 AM: Saw a beautiful sunrise and got ready for the ride.

We never planned to stay at definite locations. Our target was to ride the bikes from 6-6 and settle wherever we reach by then.

3:00 PM: We crossed Kalpa.

You will not get any petrol pump after Kalpa till Kaza.

5:15 PM: We reached Ka-zigs where you can see the zig-zags that you'll cross on your way to the top. It is beautiful.

6:00 PM: We reached Nako village. After visiting Nako monastery, we started looking for a home stay and found a very comfortable one in our budget at the beginning of the village.

Nako is a small village situated in the Spiti Valley with a beautiful location that gives an ultimate view of the surrounding mountains. The village has a monastery and a lake that you can visit. You won't find any mobile network except of BSNL. People are amazing and you may hear good stories of the valley from them.

9:00 PM: We had our dinner and witnessed the blanket of stars up above in the sky. Mesmerizing.

Distance covered: 250 Kms

Ka-zigs

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Near Pooh

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Shongtong Bridge

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Nako

Photo of Nako, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan
Day 4

6:00 AM: We had breakfast and started our journey.

We stood in the basin to know how it would feel to flow like River Spiti through the valley.

There was hardly any water in the river as the valley still remains untouched from rainfall since ages. No rain water and unaccessible water from Spiti river are the reasons why agriculture could not be a major source of income and not many people chose to live in this land.

1:00 PM: We reached Kaza.

We had some beautiful locations and captured a lot of pictures in between. Every single place was so beautiful that we wanted to just sit there and gaze the nature.

The town of Kaza, Kaze or Kaja is the subdivisional headquarters of the remote Spiti Valley in the Lahaul and Spiti district of the state of Himachal Pradesh in the Western Himalayas of India. Spiti, which is a part of the Lahaul and Spiti district of Himachal, is a high altitude or cold desert having close similarities to the neighbouring Tibet and Ladakh regions in terms of terrain, climate and the Buddhist culture. Kaza, situated along the Spiti River at an elevation of 3,650 metres (11,980 ft) above mean sea level, is the largest township and commercial center of the valley.

2:00 PM: We had authentic Tibetan lunch and interacted with a few people to know their culture and history. It was so heart-warming that we continued it for quite a long time.

3:00 PM: We reached Key Monastery and met a monk there who helped us to guide us through the art, architecture and the history behind the monastery.

Kye Gompa, also popular as Ki, Key or Kee, is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery located on top of a hill at an altitude of 13,668 ft above sea level, close to the Spiti River, in the Spiti Valley of Himachal Pradesh, India.

It is the biggest monastery of Spiti Valley and a religious training centre for Lamas.

We entered the Key Monastery and saw 3 monks sitting in centre of the temple area. Suddenly, a bell rings, a monk comes and ask us to follow him. We followed him through stairs, spaces, doors and none of them were all same (I could relate it the journey of life). We enter into a dark place that had number of Diyas and containers used for prayer and offering to the Lord. The monk offers us tea and biscuits and starts preparing a pyramid type structure that is used in the prayer. While he was preparing, we communicated on topics related to Buddhism, Tibet, incarnation, life, languages and what not.

He guided us through campus of the temple telling the history of each room, paintings and scriptures that were kept in there.

Having spent some time in there, I felt like I've lived another life for a brief duration of that time. Absolutely grateful to him for providing such an experience.

4:00 PM: We reached Kibber and spent some time there to explore the village.

The beautiful village of Kibber, which is located in Spiti Valley and at a height of 4205 metres above sea level, holds the distinction of being the highest motorable village in the world.

That moment of your travel when you feel like celebrating.

Having rode for endless kilometres and infinite hours, we reached the land that offered great stays, tasty food, lovely people and mind boggling beauty around.

Every morning I spent in the valley, I used to be excited about the day to come and be at a different and beautiful place. Spiti fulfilled all my wishes that I had for this travel and left an unforgettable impression in my head and heart. .

The Middle Land turned out to be The 'Magical' Land.

5:30 PM: We reached Langza village. Met a few kids, had a great time playing with them.

The choice was to visit this village or not.

He said that we don't have time and will not be able to make it to the place we want to stay tonight.

I said that we don't have time to visit this place ever again. I don't know whether we will see it again or not.

He was scared for the future. I was determined for the present.

He gave a thought and chose present.

We made the right decision.

People in Spiti are super awesome. They make you feel happy and you can talk to them for hours. They've lovely vibes that you'll love to connect with them. I had multiple interactions with so many people out there and none let me down. They'll tell you stories and recommend you things to do in Spiti. Follow their instructions and you'll enjoy your stay there.

6:30 PM: Reached Dhankar Monastery. We explored through the village to get a home stay and got a good one situated at the top of village.

Dhankar Village is a large high village which used to be the capital of the Spiti Valley. It is at an altitude of 3,894 metres (12,774 feet) above sea level, between the towns of Tabo and Kaza.

7:00 PM: Visited the abandoned fort.

Distance covered: 210 Kms

Spiti River basin

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Kibber

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Langza

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Langza

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Kibber

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Road of the valley

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Langza

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Kibber

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Key Monastery

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Kaza

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Monk of Key Monastery

Photo of Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan
Day 5

6:00 AM: Visited Dhankar Monastery.

Above the village sits the local monastery - the Dhankar Gompa. We heard a lot of stories related to the times when it was a capital and the monastery which is supposed to be more than thousand years old, from the local families.

The white single floor building that you see in the picture is where we stayed for that night. The place has a beautiful view that will make you love this place forever.

8:00 AM: Had breakfast at Tabo.

4:00 PM: Reached Chitkul.

Last Dhaba ( Dhaba is the name given to roadside restaurants in India ) of India Situated at Chitkul Small Village of Himachal Pradesh and on India-China Border. Chitkul (Chittkul) is a village in Kinnaur district of Himachal Pradesh. It is the last inhabited village near the Indo-China border. The Indian road ends here.

Visited the last point accessible.

Distance covered: 250 Kms

Last Restaurant of India, Chitkul

Photo of Dhankar Monastery, Sichling-Dhankhar Gompa, Dhankhar, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Dhankar

Photo of Dhankar Monastery, Sichling-Dhankhar Gompa, Dhankhar, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Tabo

Photo of Dhankar Monastery, Sichling-Dhankhar Gompa, Dhankhar, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan
Day 6

6:00 AM: Visited the Mathi Temple.

The Mathi Temple is dedicated to goddess Shri Mathi, who is the local goddess of the people of Chitkul. The beautiful temple consists of the goddess made up of walnut wood and covered with clothes and decorated by a tuft of the tail of yak. The temple is said to be about 500 years old.

7:00 AM: Started our journey back to home.

3:00 PM: Reached Simla

6:00 PM: Reached Chandigarh

11:00 PM: Reached Dhariwal

Distance covered: 520 Kms

"I've learnt that fear limits you and your vision. It serves as blinders to what may be just a few steps down the road for you. The journey is valuable, but believing in your talent, your abilities, and your self-worth can empower you to walk down even brighter path. Transforming fear into freedom - how great is that?"

- Soledad O'Brien

Total Distance covered: 2280 Kms

Total Amount spent per person (INR): 3000 (Fuel) + 1500 (Home stay) + 1500 (Food) = 6000/-

Mathi Temple

Photo of Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Kinner Kailash

Photo of Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Typical storage house in Chitkul Sangla valley

Photo of Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan

Chitkul

Photo of Chitkul, Himachal Pradesh, India by Savpril Salwan
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