Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from August, 2015

Ladakh Diaries - Day # 4

Since we had saw most of the things on the Leh - Uleytopko route the day before, I faced the prospect of being in my Leh hotel room by as early as noon. This was a problem, as I had just spent all that time acclitimising and I didn't want to be indoors so soon in the day. So over breakfast, I came up with this whacko idea: why don't I go river rafting?????

Even before I could finish my breakfast, I could feel the rush of adrenaline. But first, Alchi Monastery. This is- if I remember correctly- the oldest monastery in Ladakh and arguably one of the prettiest. It is the only monastery that is not situated on a hill top. The village is pretty and full of al-fresco restaurants. The main temple is a very run down building with paintings going back a thousand years. It's very delicately preserved. Alchi monastery is a must- see place in Ladakh and if you don't wish to stay in Uleytopko, you could also try and find a motel here in this village. Do spend a few hours, atleast a…

Ladakh diaries - Day #3

We hit the road on our third day. On the way to Uleytopko- a popular camping site on the banks of Indus river- we head past Magnetic Hill, Basgo Fort and Likir Monastery. Our first stop, though, is at Gurdwara Shri Patthar Sahib. This is a Sikh place of worship but a popular spot for all travellers passing by. The place is maintained by the Indian Army. The story goes that once upon a time Guru Nanak meditated here. One of his enemies threw a huge rock at him, but when the rock hit him, it made an impression of his posture on the rock. Nothing, of course, happened to Guru Nanak; he escaped un-hurt and the enemy got convinced by Guru Nanak's powers and became his disciple, thereafter. That rock- with Guru Nanak's impression- is still here at this Gurudwara.

The place of worship is very popular among tourists and army people alike. It is a revered and respected place; you could see the devotion. You could see rows and rows of plaques being engraved in the walls by various army …

Ladakh diaries - Day #1 and 2

A very interesting and memorable trip starts off on a very boring note. The one thing we have to do after reaching Leh is to acclitimise to the high altitude. Since Leh town is situated at about 11,000 ft above sea level, the air is thin. And since most of us fly there directly from low levels, it's absolute;y necessary to spend day- preferably two like I did- by doing ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.

So my Day #1 went by just watching television and doing practically nothing else. I had forgotten my iPad, Kindle and headphones, so at the Mumbai airport I had to buy a new pair of headphones. That was my companion as well for the better part of the first two days at Leh.

On day#2, I went to Sanchi Stupa, a Buddhist monument perched high up on a hill that gives magnificent views of the Leh valley. That's the place to go if you want good sunset views at Leh. Photographers start lining up their cameras and tripods here, from 5:30 onwards. I found a good spot for my tripod and waited patiently. …