Cycling through High Himalayas

  • Map.

  • This Cycle Tour begins from Shimla – the former Summer Capital of the Imperial Government in India and gradually you enter the hills and drive over the high motor able roads, over high passes providing a spectacular view of the Himalayan ranges. There are Buddhist Monasteries, a lake, cedar forests, mighty river Satluj and woodcraft and finally descend to Manali from where you fly to Delhi.

    This is an excellent experience of Cycling, through the hidden valleys of Indian Western Himalayas, some high passes and some of the rugged terrain. Spiti is the seabed of Ocean Tethys from which Himalaya arose. The moonlike landscape offers some of the most stunning views in the world.

    To be conducted : June and December.
    Highest Altitude Reached : Kunzum Pass 4590 m.
    Duration : 14 Nights / 15 Days.

    1. A Jeep runs parallel to the cyclists.
    2. A Guide / Cum Escort remains with the Group.
    3. We stop after every 15 – 20 kilometers for water break.
    4. A fully equipped first – Aid is a part of the kit.
    5. If you want you can bring your own bicycles and other equipment.
    6. Packed Lunch is provided to the Cyclists and we stop at some appropriate place to sit together and have lunch.

    We Provide

    1. Bicycle and Safety Gear.
    2. All Transport from Pick up at Chandigarh till Departure at Manali.
    3. The program is on full board basis except at Shimla and Manali where it is on half board basis.
    4. Camp – Tents, Sleeping Bags, Sleeping Mattresses.
    5. All Meals during the Cycling and Camping.
    6. English Speaking Guide.
    7. First-Aid Box



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    Day 01

    Arrival Chandigarh and Drive to Shimla.
    Distance : 120 km.
    Driving Time : 4 hours.
    Arrive Chandigarh by Train / Flight. Met on arrival at Chandigarh and drive to Shimla.

    Shimla came into existence after the Gurkha British wars in 1816. From then till 1947 the British used it at a holiday resort and then as their Summer Capital. Completely developed by the British Officers Shimla takes you back to the bygone era as the town is a Victorian and post Victorian architecture. Large number of buildings built by the Imperial government remain scattered and the climate of the town has a clear resemblance to Europe.

    Day 02

    It is necessary to spend one more day here to get acclimatized to the hills. Also we shall have a test ride around the town.

    Shimla is a Walker’s paradise. Many people coming to Shimla regret if they miss it, so we keep here two nights for you so that you can walk through the Heritage Lanes of Shimla with your guide. There are beautiful Churches, A Viceregal Lodge now called Institute of Advanced Study, Army Heritage Museum, Annandale Ground, Gaiety theater and of course The Mall road – a busy street but meant only for the pedestrians.

    Day 03

    Shimla – Baghi
    Distance : 78 km.
    Overnight Stay : Home Stay / Guest House
    Today is the first day of the ride. We ascend to Narkanda. We start after the breakfast and follow the Hindustan Tibet road till Narkanda – 9000 feet. From here we turn right to take the village road to Bahli. The ride is through the Apple orchards, lush landscape and over Narkanda – a small but busy town at the elevation of 9000 feet.

    Day 04

    Baghi – Sarhan
    Distance : 100 km.
    Overnight Stay : Hotel SriKhand Madev (Government Run Hotel)

    After early breakfast ride to Sarahan, through Sungari and Taklesh. Sarhan is a beautiful village surrounded by apple orchards and dominated by Shrikhand Mahadev Peak (5155 M/ 16,912 feet) which resembles the “Shivling.” Ride through the dirt road and keep following it till Sarahan.

    Day 05

    Sarhan – Chitkul
    Distance : 75 km.
    Overnight Stay : Hotel Panchali or Similar.

    We visit the Bhimakali Temple, a wonderful mixture of Buddhist and Hindu architecture. It is very sacred to both communities. The idol of Goddess Bhimakali is approximately 200 years old.

    Chitkul is one place that is not to be missed on this trail. This is the last village in the valley of river Baspa and keeps amazing landscape with its temple of the village at the backdrop.

    Day 06

    Chitkul – Kalpa
    Distance : 45 km.
    Overnight Stay : Hotel Grand Shangrila.
    Morning ride to Kalpa. On tha way we shall visit village Batseri and village Kamru. Looming above Kalpa village is the impressive Mt. Kinner Kailash (6050 M/ 19,850 feet). Arrive in time for lunch.

    Afternoon : Also we need to appear before the State Divisional Magistrate to obtain Permits for the Inner line area.

    Day 07

    Overnight Stay : Hotel Grand Shangrila.

    After breakfast walk around the villages in and around Kalpa. These are the ancient and exquisite villages of Chini, Kothi, Pangi and Telangi. Make good use of your camera as the landscape and the architecture attracts you repeatedly.

    Day 08

    Kalpa – Nako / Chandigarh
    Distance : 100 km
    Riding Time : 4 / 5 hours.

    This is little tough day as we start riding beyond treeline. The village of Nako lies at an altitude of 3625 meters (11,893 feet), high above the last stretch of the Spiti Valley. It was once a very important center of Buddhism in the region. There are different small sized temples belonging to different periods between the 11th and 12th centuries distributed all over the village, including a monastic complex on its western edge. Boasting four temples and a number of additional buildings, this complex preserves the earliest artistic heritage. The austere and un-ornamented exteriors of the buildings give little hint of the important artistic and religious legacy that lies within the walls.

    Day 09

    Nako – Tabo
    Distance : 70 km
    Riding Time : 4 / 5 hours.
    Overnight Stay : Hotel Tow Dhey

    Today we enter the Spiti Valley. Geographically and archeologically, Spiti is a living museum. The mountains are devoid of any vegetation due to erosion by wind, sun and snow over thousands of years. Our vehicles climb up to the village of Tabo (3050 M/ 10,006 feet). Built in the year 996 AD, the Chos Khor Monastery at Tabo is the largest monastery in Spiti and one of the few remaining examples of the Golden Period of Buddhist Culture in the Himalayan Region. The wall frescoes of the monastery are comparable in their antiquity and quality to those of the Ajanta caves, hence they are called the Ajanta of the Himalayas. It houses more than 100 Lamas, a large number of scriptures and pieces of art, wall paintings, tankhas and stucco. We will reach Tabo for lunch. In the afternoon and evening we will visit the monastery and village.

    Day 10

    Tabo – Kaza: A detour to Peen Valley.
    Total Distance : 110 km.
    Riding Time : 5/6 hours.
    Overnight Stay : Hotel Sakya Abode Hotel Sakya Abode

    Rise early if you want to join the monks in morning worship at Tabo monastery (5 min walk through the village).

    After breakfast we ride to Kaza. On the way we shall visit Dhankar, the ancient capital of Spiti. Dankar Gompa (3800 M/ 12,467 feet) was built in the 12th century. This hilltop fort dominates the scene, and once served as a jail. It contains more than 160 scriptures of Lamas and Buddhists in the Bhoti language. A statue of Dhyan Buddha consisting of four complete figures seated back to back is the main attraction of this four to five century-old monastery. Unfortunately, the ancient Gompa, situated on the very edge of the peak, is deteriorating. Entering the interior may be restricted in the very near future. They have shifted the main monastery to a new complex at the entrance of the village. His Holiness the Dalai Lama inaugurated this temple in June 2004.

    After that ride to Peen Valley, that actually is s geologists paradise.

    Day 11

    Kaza: A detour to Peen Valley.
    Overnight Stay : Hotel Sakya Abode Hotel Sakya Abode

    Morning after breakfast we ride to visit Kye Monastery. Then to Village Kibber and Village Gete from where the view of Spiti Valley is just astounding.

    Afternoon ride to Langcha, Komic and Hikkim Villages. In all these Hikkim is the highest village (4587 meters) in the world that is connected by road, electricity, water and telephone.

    Please don’t ask the beauty of the landscape here. We shall not be able to explain it in words.

    Day 12

    Kaza – Chandertal
    Total Distance : 100 km.
    Riding Time : 4/5 hours.
    Overnight Stay : Camp.

    Ride to Chandertaal is over Kunzum Pass (4500 m), the highest pass on the way. Chandertal is a high altitude lake at the elevation of 14500 feet. The total circumference of the lake is about two kilometers but its crystal clear water makes it look like a pearl in a desert.

    Camp at the banks of the lake.

    Day 13

    Chandertal – Manali
    Total Distance : 125 km.
    Riding Time : 6 hours.
    Overnight Stay : Hotel Banon Resort or Similar.

    This is our longest day. Ride over the famous Kunzum Pass, enroute visit Lahaul Valley, between Kunzum and Rohtang. The area offers magnificent views over Rohtang La (3980 M/ 13,058 feet). At Rohtang Pass we will relax and enjoy the breath-taking beauty.

    Day 14

    Overnight Stay : Hotel Banon Resort or Similar.

    Day to Relax.

    Day 15

    Manali – Delhi
    Morning drive to Bhuntar airport to board flight to Delhi.

    Tour Ends