Best Time to Visit Leh Ladakh
Every year, hundreds of people plan to visit Ladakh and this is the reason why; knowing the best time to visit Ladakh is important. Not only does this help in getting a better understanding of the terrain but also helps in planning better. And this question will surely come in front of you while planning to visit this exotic land. So, like many others, if you too are going to visit here, then ensure knowing about all the elements of Ladakh including the best time to visit.
Traveling to Leh-Ladakh is one of the most cherished thoughts for many. Enjoy the sights of the vast and desolate expanse of hills and valleys. This along with the thrilling experience of enduring the harsh climate is one of its kind adventure. While some people suggest summers to be the best time to visit Ladakh, others love traversing during the harsh winters. Where summers are exciting and comfortable, winters are harsh but thrilling too. From multiple festivals to amazing landscapes, one can enjoy various things as per the time you visit.
Best Time to Visit Ladakh
The best time to visit Ladakh is during summers when the temperature remains comfortable and you get a chance to comfortably explore all the areas. The temperature between these months remains between 7°C and 26°C.
Ladakh in Summer Season (March to June)
April marks the beginning of summer and this is the tourist season in Ladakh. From this month Ladakh starts to become alive with tourist activities. The temperature throughout the season remains between 7°C and 26°C. The summer months of Ladakh start from March and last till June. Throughout these months, the sun shines bright making the temperature and weather of the entire UT quite comfortable for visitors.
Why should you visit Ladakh during summers
Apart from better weather, summers are the best time to visit Ladakh because every attraction of the UT reopens from this time. Visiting all the lakes, passes, villages, and other important destinations becomes easy and comforting.
During this season, the nights are also comfortable and the temperature doesn’t drop much. The sky remains clear and you can enjoy the view of the distant mountains too. Photography and videography become easier and more comfortable during summers too.
As both the highways remain clear and snow melts away, adventure seekers and bikers also find it amazing to visit here.
Festivals in Ladakh during the summer season
During the summer season, you can also enjoy being a part of the various festivals at different places. Some of the best festivals to become a part of are Hemis Festivals, YuruKabgyat, and Saka Dawa. To know more, click here!
Hotel availability during the summer season
Summer sees the peak of tourism in Ladakh and the hotel availability remains a bit of an issue. Although the accommodations function in full swing, finding a good one can still become a task because of the rush. It is advised that one should get their hotel room booked before arriving in Ladakh.To know more, Click here!
Ladakh in Monsoon Season (July to September)
During Mid-May, only the Srinagar-Leh highway opens up. But during early June, Manali-Leh road opens up along with Rohtang Pass. And from June people start traversing through this highway because before this the highway experiences blockages due to heavy snow. Meanwhile, just before the monsoons, it is really cool and suitable to travel to Ladakh due to the amazing weather. But rest assured that monsoon season is also considered an ideal time to visit Ladakh because the temperature here remains between 5°C and 20°C.
Why should you visit Ladakh during the monsoon season
Ladakh falls in the rain shadow zone of the Himalayas and that’s the reason why it experiences low rainfall throughout the year. But it is still refreshing and perfect for some adventure activities.
The monsoon season is also an ideal time for adventure junkies because the rivers offer rafting level III at many points in Zanskar and an amusing trek experience at Kang Yatse, Spituk, and Markha Valley. Nevertheless, even the climate of this rain-shadow area keeps on changing from time to time. Previously, there have been rains in Ladakh too, or intermittent overcast conditions. But nothing drastic has happened till now.
Festivals in Ladakh during monsoon season
Apart from the adventure that’s in store for the visitors, Ladakh in the monsoon is also a great time to be a part of several festivals. There are festivals like Karsha Gustor, Phyang Tsedup, and Korzok Gustor to name some.
Hotel availability during monsoon season
The accommodations in Ladakh during the monsoon season will not be a problem. At every attraction, there are going to be a lot of options available for you. The hotels or camps are going to be there in full swing but the crowd comparatively thins down. This allows the visitors to enjoy selecting through the options. You do not necessarily have to pre-book your stay at any place because it is highly unusual that the hotels at any place are full.
Ladakh in Winter Season (October to February)
By this time the winds start getting colder and many places start receiving snow. The place experiences sub-zero temperatures at all locations above 14,000 ft. The temperature shuttles between -22°C to -7°C throughout Ladakh. Almost all the tourists leave the place with only a few remaining to brave the chill. Srinagar-Leh and Manali-Leh highways remain open for the first week of October and that too highly depends on the weather condition.
Apart from this week of October, Ladakh remains inaccessible for the rest of the months of winter. The only way to reach Ladakh during the winter season is via airways. You can take a direct flight from Delhi to Leh. There are indirect flights from other cities of India to reach here.
Why should you visit Ladakh during Winter Season
The coldest months of the winter season are December and January. And people visit here during these months to enjoy snow activities, snow leopard safari, and the popular Chadar Trek in Zanskar Valley. Although accessing Ladakh is only possible by flights, the internal circuits of the UT remain open throughout the year. But yes, because of heavy snowfall, you might have to face roadblocks too often.
Note: If you are planning to visit here for Chadar Trek, it is recommended to keep an eye on the weather. Knowing about the Chadar formation on the river is of utmost importance.
Festivals in Ladakh during the winter season
Thiksey and Padum Festival are celebrated during November month and tourists can get a chance to enjoy the celebration and savor the delicious local delicacies. If you are planning on visiting here during the winter months, try to become a part of these festivals.
Hotel availability during the winter season
Most of the hotels, guesthouses, restaurants get closed and even locals move back, vacating the place till next summer. And finding accommodation will not be difficult but highly limited. It is advised to get your stay booked before visiting here. The cold would have already settled in by this time and there is frequent snowfall which makes survival and acclimatization difficult.
The temperature continues to dip further with each passing day. One of the major highlights of your visit is that you get to witness the changing colors of Pangong Tso and Tso Moriri which happens from November to December/mid-January. After this, the Lakes of Ladakh get completely frozen with solid ice and one can even easily walk on them.
FAQs About the Best Time to Visit leh Ladakh
Ans: Summer and monsoon season which is between the months of mid-May and early- October is considered the best time to visit Leh Ladakh by bike. Howver, you need to check the weather conditions during the trip for any calamity changes.
Also, be informed that the Srinagar Leh Highway reopens around mid-May. While the Manali-Leh Highway reopens in around early/mid-June. Both of these highways remain open till September or October, depending on the snow.
Ans: Summer and Monsoon are the best time to visit Ladakh by car just as above! mid-May and early- October is considered the best time to visit Ladakh by road. Again it is worth mentioning that the two highways that connect Ladakh, Srinagar-Leh, and Manali-Leh reopen between early/mid-may and early/mid-June, respectively.
It is also advised that you must plan accordingly after reviewing the weather and climate conditions of Ladakh at your time of visit.
Ans: If you want to visit Ladakh by air then the best time is throughout the year! If you want cheap flight tickets, visit Ladakh between June, July, August, November, December, January, and February. Months like April, May, September, and October are when airfares to and from Ladakh become expensive.
Ans: The roads to Zanskar are not operational during winters from December to February due to excessive snowfall. Zanskar Valley beacons tourists to come from mid-June - September (summers and monsoon). Zanskar Valley falls in the rain shadow area since its elevation is a staggering 9,000 ft - 25,000 ft (approx.) which is why it doesn't receive much rain. The elevation also makes sure that you do not suffer the blistering heat! In these 4 months, you will have no trouble reaching Zanskar Valley and enjoy sightseeing as the roads to reach Zanskar from Leh remain open.
People also plan on visiting here during the winter season. The only way to reach Zanskar Valley in winters is via walking on the thick sheet of ice (also called Chadar of Ice) which develops on the Zanskar River due to the freezing of water.
Ans: Around 15 December to the end of January is the best time to do the Chadar Trek in Ladakh. During this time, a thick sheet of ice is formed on the Zanskar River. Expect to climb icy rocks and boulders during 90 kilometers (approx.) one-way trek! Chadar Trek is only possible in winters.
Note: It is advised to keep an eye on the weather to make sure that the river is frozen. With increasing global warming, the chadar is not being formed and the trek is not happening due to the thin sheet.
Ans: Budget travelers will find good deals on accommodation and airfares when the highways to reach Ladakh get closed! Tourism dips during winters and that's the time when budget travelers get the best deal. There are two routes to reach and return from Ladakh; Srinagar-Leh and Manali-Leh highway. Both of these remain closed from October till May.
This is the reason why you will get good discounts on accommodation and airfares between October and April. Apart from this, if you book your Ladakh air tickets in advance, chances of getting better deals are high.
Ans: The best time go Ladakh with family is from June to September, either via road or air. This is the time when Ladakh tourism is at its peak and the weather remains comfortable throughout the day and night. Finding accommodation and venturing within the Leh region won't be a problem. Stumbling across roadblocks will also reduce significantly. But if you look from a leisure perspective, transportation mode will play a crucial role. Because air travel is the most suggested, safe, and comfortable way to reach Ladakh with family.
Ans: Although Ladakh is not a couple of destinations, the young and adventurous Indians prefer visiting here too often. But if considering this part for couples, winters will probably be the best time to visit Ladakh for a honeymoon or couple getaway. The winter season in Ladakh starts in October and lasts till March. The accommodation price fluctuates a little. Even summers in Ladakh (from May to July) are pleasing temperature-wise, and there are places where you would require woolen clothes during the night in high-altitude regions.
So the best time to visit Ladakh for a honeymoon will depend on your travel taste and holiday preferences. If you would like to see snowfall on your honeymoon in Ladakh, come in winter. If you want to enjoy camping, rafting, and other adventure activities, come in the summers.
Ans: The best time to visit Leh Ladakh for snowfall is between November and February. Though snowfall can be seen throughout the year at certain high-altitude places. But the winter months are the best and if you are looking for a good amount of snowfall then fly to Leh in January.
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