Tsomoriri Lake

Tsomoriri Lake


Tsomoriri Lake, located in Ladakh's Changthang region, is India's largest high-altitude lake at 4,521 meters above sea level. To witness Ladakh’s beauty, one must experience it; Tso Moriri is another example. Spanning approximately 26 km in length and 5 km in width, it is a stunning freshwater lake known for its clear blue waters and picturesque surrounding landscape. It is also known as Tso Moriri Wetland Conservation Reserve and the world's highest Ramsar site. This Ramsar site is home to diverse wildlife, including 34 bird species, including the Tibetan Gazelle and Snow Leopard. Key attractions include the Korzok Monastery and birdwatching opportunities.

The Tso Moriri Lake is dressed in shades of blue, with the images of playfully shaped clouds reflected in its pristine waters. It’s only when you come across sights such as these that you wonder about the infinite beauty of nature.

Here is everything you need to know about Tsomoriri Lake

Like the high-altitude passes, challenging roads, and panoramic beauty, Ladakh has another exciting place to offer its utmost beauty: the high-altitude lakes. The number of lakes in Leh - Ladakh is extensive, but the popular ones are just a handful. The Tsomoriri Lake in the Changthang Valley offers more than just beauty.

Some amazing facts about Tsomoriri Lake

  • Tsomoriri Lake is located in the Changthang Valley of Ladakh.
  • Tsomoriri Lake is approximately 250 km from Leh city.
  • This lake in Ladakh is one of the most pristine and beautiful attractions at an astonishing Tso Moriri altitude of 4521 m (14835 ft.) above sea level.
  • Because Pangong Tso is divided between India and China, Tso Moriri is the largest high-altitude lake entirely in India.
  • The lake is approximately 26 km long and somewhere around 5 km in width.
  • Tso Moriri is also referred to as the “Mountain Lake,” which is a freshwater lake.
  • Tso Moriri is open for travelers 12 months long if you catch a flight to Leh.

Attractions of Tso Moriri

Being one of India's finest lakes, many tourists are attracted to the lake. Here is what makes this high-altitude freshwater lake an amazing place for travelers:

  • The foremost thing that makes this place remarkable is its spellbinding beauty. Tso Moriri Lake viewpoint is a photographer’s paradise.
  • Tsomoriri Lake in Leh-Ladakh is home to approximately 34 species of birds, 14 of which are water birds.
  • The bird watchers love spotting and clicking pictures of brown-headed gulls, great crested grebe, and black-necked cranes.
  • The other animals spotted here include Tibetan Gazelle, Tibetan Ass, Tibetan Wolf, and Snow leopard.
  • Another attraction is the 400-year-old Korzok monastery, which stands towards the lake's western banks due to its architecture and boastful history. The monastery houses about 70 monks, a statue of Shakyamuni Buddha, and Tibetan Buddhist Paintings.
  • This region dresses in various colors during the Korzok Gustor Festival, which is celebrated annually.

Best time to visit Tsomoriri Lake

The best time to visit Tso Moriri Lake is between May and August. The lake is accessible throughout the year because the internal circuit of Ladakh is open all year, but most adventurers come here during these months on road trips.

Distance of Tso Moriri from some important places of Ladakh

Places Distance
Leh to Tso Moriri 220 km
Pangong Lake to Tso Moriri 366 km
Nubra valley to Tso Moriri 353 km
Diskit to Tso Moriri 307 km
Kargil to Tso Moriri 433 km

Places to visit around Tsomoriri Lake

Though Tso Moriri is an amazing attraction, there are a few other nearby attractions that you should visit.

  • Tso Moriri Lake point
  • Tso Moriri conservation reserve
  • Korzok Monastery

People enjoy birdwatching the most among all the other things around Tso Moriri.

How to reach Tsomoriri Lake

There are four routes to Tso Moriri Lake. Each route differs from the others in terms of attractions and distances. Let's examine the different routes to Tso Moriri.

Route from Leh to Tso Moriri

The route from Leh to Tso Moriri Lake is the most preferred route by visitors to this enchanting lake. This route takes around six to seven hours, depending on when you take a break. This route covers famous monasteries of Leh Ladakh, including Thiksey, Hemis, and Shey monasteries. It also boasts the best road conditions.

However, if you are short on time, you can use this route to exit towards the Manali-Leh highway from Tso Moriri. To know more, click here!

Route from Pangong Lake to Tso Moriri

You can also reach Tso Moriri by direct and indirect routes between Tso Moriri and Pangong Tso Lake. In most cases, you will take a direct route from Pangong Tso to Tso Moriri.

Direct route Pangong to Tso Moriri

The direct route to Tso Moriri from Pangong Tso passes through the remote and unique Changthang region, passing some of the most incredible scenery in the Ladakh region. However, foreigners taking this route cannot go beyond Man-Merak village as they don’t have the required permits. They must take the indirect and longer route to Tso Moriri from Pangong Tso.

Always carry enough fuel for about 550 - 600 km because no petrol pump covers Leh - Pangong Tso - Nyoma - Loma - Tso Moriri - Leh.

Indirect Route Pangong Lake to Tso Moriri

The indirect route is also the longer route, and it goes through Chumathang. On this route, you need to go from Pangong Tso to Leh up to Karu. Upon reaching there, you can take a left towards Upshi – Chumathang – Korzok to reach the Tso Moriri Lake. Foreign tourists who are denied permits to enter the Changthang region can take this route if they don’t want to go back to Leh. However, one must return to Leh from Pangong Tso to relax and refresh themselves before heading towards Tso Moriri the following day. To learn more about Pangong Lake and Tso Moriri, click here!

Road Conditions

The road conditions entirely depend on the route you are taking. The best road, however, is the route from Leh to Tso Moriri Lake. Regarding the kind of vehicles in Leh Ladakh, the best option is an SUV. The roads in Leh Ladakh are full of twists and turns, and the SUVs are best suited for this purpose.

Accommodations around Tsomoriri Lake

People who visit here love spending as much time as they want around the lake, and most spend at least a night. If you plan a night's stay around Tso Moriri, you should be well aware of your options. There are camp colonies and a few hotels on the premises, but if you want to know all your options, here is the link to it!

Permit required for Tsomoriri Lake in Ladakh

Certain areas in Leh Ladakh require domestic visitors to obtain an Inner Line Permit (ILP). Visiting Tso Moriri also requires you to get an ILP. Foreigners visiting Leh Ladakh must obtain a Protected Area Permit (POP). Visitors must pay an environmental fee of Rs. 400 and an Inner Line Permit Fee of Rs. 20 per day per person to obtain this permit. The inner line permits are available from the website www.lahdclehpermit.in. It should also be noted that permits are not needed to travel on the Manali-Leh highway, Srinagar-Leh highway, or Zanskar Valley.

However, refrain from the hassle of obtaining a permit by choosing Leh Ladakh India, for your Ladakh expedition. Our experts will curate a customized Leh Ladakh package for you and handle all your requirements, from permits to local transfers, providing a smooth journey.

Availiblity of Mobile Network at Tsomoriri Lake

You will not find a mobile network at Tso Moriri Lake, but who needs it anyway when you have a slice of heaven staring at you? Leave all your worldly needs behind you and lose yourself in the beauty of the surroundings. That’s what counts! To learn more about the availability of a mobile network, click here!

Important Travel tips

  • You are advised to get your Inner Line Permit (for Indian travelers) and PAP (for international travelers) online.
  • Whichever route you take, you are advised to start early to reach your destination before nightfall.
  • Do not try to put your tent on the banks of the lake, as it is strictly prohibited. If you want to put your tent in, you are advised to ask the officials around to find out where you can do so.
  • If you want to set up your tent, do so around a hotel or the camp colonies. Don’t set up a camp in any secluded area.
  • Keep a first aid box in your backpack because you will stay in a high-altitude region. If you feel uncomfortable due to a lack of oxygen at Leh, it is better to be safe by carrying an oxygen cylinder with you.
  • If you travel here during winter, hiring a cab and keeping some buffer days is better.

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