Dreamlands in the Sky
ROUTE : - Leh - Nimmu - Lamayaru - Saboo - Srinagar
On this remarkable Himalayan Journey in Ladakh and Kashmir, you will experience gracious hospitality by our genuinely passionate and professional team. It is this innovative program that allows you to take gentle nature and heritage walks for those engaging moments to meet the local people and understand their way of simple life, to share a cup of tea with a heavy laughter.
While you discover the sacred realms of Tantric Buddhism and Sufi Islam, you will also delve deeper into the universal message of love and compassion preached by the great master of yore. This contrasting trip from the high altitude barren and rugged Ladakh to the gentle green paradise valley of Kashmir promises to be a transformative journey of a lifetime!
Enrich your mind and soul, passing through the great Himalayas, breathing the Buddhist and Islamic culture on this journey.
The visits and sightseeing are specially crafted that would be led by top quality expert and knowledge guides who have a sense of humor to make the holiday a memorable and fun-filled journey.
Attention to details, like selecting a fantastic scenic spot for a picnic lunch, outdoor breakfast in nature, relishing local cuisine in a traditional restaurant, visiting a family, artists and craftsmen and throwing a pleasant surprise is the special edge that our team has mastered over the years. Carefully selected charming accommodations that are owner/family run add great value and style to this holiday.
– Magical views of the Himalayas
– Buddhist Culture and Monasteries
– Backwaters of Dal Lake and Shikara
– Leisurely walks
– Variety of Landscapes
Best time to go: Mid May to Mid October
Arrival TimeMidnight or Late night
Dress CodeCasual, Warm and Sports Wear
Tour Itinerary : - Dreamlands in the Sky
Day 01: Arrive Delhi airport
Garland welcome, assistance and transfer to hotel for short stay near the airport.
Day 02: Fly to Leh (3505m) – the capital of the ancient Buddhist Kingdom
Early morning transfer to the airport to board our classic mountain flight to Leh over the heights of the mighty Himalayas.
Traditional welcome on arrival at the airport. You will be transferred to Nimmu village which is around 45 minutes away from the airport. You have a full day to relax and to get acclimatized with the environment and high altitude, staying comfortably in Nimmu House, your rural heritage accommodation. During the evening hours, you can involve yourself in indoor activities including going through the books at Nimmu House library to learn Tibetan and Ladakhi culture.
A three-story accommodation property, Nimmu House is situated in Nimmu village, near the confluence of Zanskar and Indus Rivers. The house has been constructed with the traditional architecture style of Ladakh. In the early 20th century, the cousin of the king of Ladakh, Rinchen Namgyal Zilder constructed built this house. The house has two Buddhist temples, 30 rooms along with stables and an orchard spread in an area of around 500sq meters where apricot, apple and walnut trees are planted.
O/N Nimmu House with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Day 03: Nimmu
After breakfast late in the morning, you will take a guided walk through the village for around 2hours, visiting the monastery, gardens, orchards and an old caravanserai.
During the walk, you will witness the local village life where people work in the fields. If interested, you can even interact with them and know about them.
You will be back at Nimmu House for a delicious lunch. After lunch, you will take an excursion with a guide to Alchi Gompa. Lotsava Richen Zangpo, who was a great Tibetan scholar and translator built a group of temples known as Alchi Choskor’s Religious Enclave which are more than 1000 years old. The temples are decorated with stunning frescoes, stucco art and wood carving, giving them a unique feature.
O/N Nimmu House with breakfast, lunch and dinner
Day 04: Nimmu – Day Hike with Hot Lunch at a Scenic Spot
After breakfast, you will enjoy a 1-hour scenic drive to Yangthang Village, passing through a spiral narrow path, crossing many villages, chortens surrounded by mountains.
There are around 20 families in the village who live here peacefully. Take a hill walk from here downwards along with the stream following bushes and trees. After walking for about 3 hours, we will reach Rizong Monastery. The local villagers, shepherds and monks have been using this trail for centuries. One of the most important Ladakhi monasteries, Rizong Monastery (Solitary Place for the Compassionate One) was built in 1831 by Lama Tsultim Nima under the Gelukpa Order. Lama Tsultim Nima founded ‘Vinaya Rules’ which are strict principles of celibacy. Every monk who meditated here has to follow these rules. Also referred to as ‘Paradise for Meditation’, the monastery is known for its standards and rules.
Close to the monastery are Chulichan Nunnery (Chomoling) and its school. There are around 30 nuns at the nunnery. After this, you will be transferred to Nimmu House to stay for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Day 05: Nimmu – Lamayuru (80km about 3hrs) – Lamayuru to Basgo (75km about 2:30hrs) Back to Nimmu
Morning drive to Lamayuru (3440m), take about 03hrs, one of the most important and sacred monasteries in Ladakh. The present building standing above the oasis of the village is a later construction. The first monastery was built at the end of the 10th century and the ruins can still be seen lying deep down below the village. The building is well maintained and its main halls are statues of five transcendental Buddhas with Vairocana in the center. The sight of the landscape around Lamayuru village looks like a moon formation.
Hot lunch will be served at Moolchand Guest House’s garden with lovely views on Lamayuru.
On your return to Nimmu, stop at Basgo village and walk up to Basgo Monastery, the complex of buildings includes a ruined fortress dating from before the 15th century, two large temples and a small shrine. The best-preserved temple which is situated at the highest point is the Chamba Lhakhang or Maitreya Temple (Chamba is the Ladakhi word for Maitreya, the Future Buddha). It was built in the mid 16th century by Tshe-wang Namgyal, of the Namgyal Dynasty who ruled Ladakh. Except for Alchi, this temple has the oldest original murals in Ladakh, dating from the 16th century.
Back to Nimmu House for an overnight stay with breakfast and dinner.
Optional Rafting –Early breakfast drive to our rating head near Chilling village, takes about 02hrs. Upon arrival, we will be briefed by the rafting crew. Our rafting route from Chilling to Sangam will take about 3hrs where you can experience up to level/grade 3 rapids on the gushing Zanskar river with the Mountain View is a great experience in itself. You will be picked up at Sangam and short transfer to Nimmu House.
Day 06: Nimmu to Leh: 35km about 1:30hrs, Leh to Saboo: 8km about 30mins
Morning to drive to Saboo village takes about 01:30hrs. En-route visit Leh Palace in Local Tibetan restaurant ‘Tibetan Kitchen’ to enjoy some wonderful local ethnic cuisine. Later explore the local Ladakhi & Tibetan market to collect some nice souvenirs, books and maps.
Leh Palace: The Royal Leh Palace 'Leh Chen Spakhar’ is located in the heart of the historic town of Leh. The impressive nine-storeyed palace was built by the ambitious King Sengge Namgyal in the 17th century. This is the only tallest building in central Ladakh. It is a miniature replica of Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet. The ruins of Leh Palace overlook the entire city of Leh and the Indus Valley and signifies Ladakh’s rich heritage. The palace is presently undertaken by the Archaeological Survey of India who takes care of its maintenance. The palace houses a museum and an old prayer room.
Walk down from Leh Palace through the back streets with small old mud houses down into the colourful market of Leh for lunch.
Saboo Resort with magnificent views on Stok Kangri Peak is seamlessly integrated into the village contours and farmland. It is a quiet place in beautiful settings with individual cottage accommodation offering nice friendly services.
O/N at Saboo Resort with dinner and breakfast.
Day 07: Saboo – Explore Indus Valley
The morning after a leisurely breakfast, leave for a gentle village walk with our guide. Pass through the village trails offering fine views of the local houses, agricultural lands where people are busy in organic farming.
Later on, you will start an excursion tour to Indus valley where you will get to visit Shey Palace, the summer palace of erstwhile Raja of Leh. This monastery is set up on a hill offering a panoramic view of the surroundings and is known for having the largest golden victory stupa. A two-story Buddha statue is placed made up of copper and gold which looks incredibly beautiful from a distance.
Our next stop will be at Thiksey Gompa. This monastery resembles the Potala Palace of Lhasa and has point atop a hill. It has chambers full of statues, stupas and sacred thangkas (Tibetan Buddhist paintings). There are 60 resident lamas and the library is one of the biggest in Ladakh.
Hot lunch near Thiksey in a new restaurant opened just for the summer season by the Ultimate Travelling Camp management.
Conclude our day’s sightseeing with the biggest and most important monastery in Ladakh – Hemis Gompa. It was built in the 17th century King Sengge Namgyal and ever since has enjoyed the patronage of the royal family. The monastery has Stupas and gold statues that have been adorned with precious stones. The monastery is known for a large collection of traditional thangkas, some of them are considered to be the largest to ever exist. The thangka is shown to the public in the exhibition only once in 12 years.
Back to Saboo Resort for an overnight stay with dinner and breakfast.
Day 08: Leh to Srinagar: FLIGHT
This is a short scenic flight over gentle Himalayan Range of Zanskar with close views of Nun Kun Peaks. Arriva Srinagar (1600m), the summer capital of Kashmir. Welcome assistance on arrival and drive past the crocus fields and fruit orchards to the shores of the Dal Lake where we stay 4 nights in the eco-luxury houseboat Sukoon. Be welcomed by your smiling hosts at the Houseboat Sukoon – a slice of paradise on a Himalayan lake. In the evening enjoy a gentle shikara (Kashmiri canoe). Take a scenic ride in your Shikara in the heart of the lake through the wetlands and witness how the people do farming and other related activities on man-made islands, planting vegetables and flowers. Sukoon Houseboat is moored on the banks of the lake and offers panoramic views of the Pir Panjal range which remains snow-covered as well as a stunning glimpse of hilltop temple and the Old Fort.
NOTE – Leh-Srinagar sector flight operates just one day in a week i.e. on Wednesday
Day 09: Srinagar, Old City Walk
Breath-in the fresh air of the morning and cherish a heavenly breakfast on the sundeck of the houseboat named Fizaa meaning ambiance. Start the morning strolling around the old city’s by-lanes, led by our local guide; observe the daily life of the city including the markets and the heritage monuments. Through this walk, you will also understand Sufism which represents the Kashmir way of life.
The walk will be started from Zaina Kadal Bridge. The other side of the bridge is a museum which showcases the Islamic architecture. As far as your sight goes, you will notes homes around built over a century ago. While walking through the narrow streets of Srinagar, you will come across the old quarters, buildings and impressions of ancient monuments that are still standing on the ground trying to establish a link with the modern world.
Perambulating through the narrow lanes and by-lanes, you come out at the grand mosque of Jamia Masjid and later at the Shah Hamdan Mosque. Constructed with magnificent wooden work and architecture, Jamia Masjid is considered to be among the most notable mosques of Srinagar. The mosque is known for its strong pillars made from the trunk of deodar trunk, more than 300 in number which provides strength and support. The main gate of the mosque is located in South direction the peaceful inner courtyard which is surrounded by an outer cloister.
Another noteworthy mosque of Srinagar is Shah Hamdan Mosque. On the right side of River Jhelum, this wooden mosque built-in 1395 stands majestically. The ceilings and walls of the mosque are decorated with paper-mache work. One of the most interesting features of the mosque is that there are no screws or nails used in building it. The mosque has been damaged by fire in 1479 and in 1731.
Zaina Kadal Market will be the last stop of the day where you will get to explore the local markets of Ali Baba. At lunch, we will visit a local Kashmiri restaurant to delve our taste buds with local cuisine. Later, we will head to Shankaracharya Temple. You will reach the foot of the flight of the stairs in the car, reaching the temple point. From there, you will take a walk to reach the temple precincts from where you will get to cherish the bird-eye view of the valley and panoramic scenery of the sunset. You will return to Sukoon in your Shikara after visiting the temple.
O/N Sukoon with breakfast and dinner. Lunch in a local Kashmiri restaurant in the city center.
Day 10: Srinagar
Wake up early in the morning to enjoy a Shikara journey to the backwaters and explore the bustling, colourful floating vegetable and fruit market where the local sellers sell fruits, flowers, saffron, etc. Also, see how the old barter system still works here. You will be served a cup of warm Kashmiri herbal tea. After this, you will return to Sukoon to enjoy a scrumptious breakfast at Fizaa. Enjoy Zawarban hike in the late morning.
This is a superb guided hill walk offering great views of Dal Lake and the surrounding hills. The hike is moderate/strenuous and anyone with an average level of fitness can do it. The trail originates from a Sufi Shrine near a small village and terminates at a hidden cave where the Sufi saint is believed to have meditated for several years. We will be accompanied by a villager, who will also host our local traditional homemade lunch when we finish the trek. In this area, you may get a chance to meet local shepherds and gypsy Gujjars as well
This hiking tour should consume a day from the moment you depart from Sukoon after having your breakfast and come back to the base. You will be picked up and transferred to Sukoon from here.
Day 11: Srinagar
After an early breakfast, drive to Dachigam which takes 45 minutes. Morning safari in Dachigam National Park which is situated around 22Km North-East of Srinagar. The then Maharaja Gulab Singh used the park as a private hunting space which is divided into two parts i.e. Upper Dachigam and Lower Dachigam. Enjoy a safari walk guided by a naturalist guide at the park.
Dachigam National Park
Location: 22Km North-East from Srinagar, Kashmir Region
Attractions: Kashmiri Stag, Himalayan Black Bear, Leopard, Ibex, Exotic Birds
The national park has got its name from 10 villages which were in existence before 1981 when this protected natural reserve was established which is spread in an area of around 141 square kilometers. The Majaraha of J&K used this space as Royal Hunting Reserve. At present, this space is a national park. A lot of rivers, lakes, waterfalls, flowery meadows, forests, etc. are now a part of Dachigam Wildlife Sanctuary under a conservation program. The park is noted for Hangal (Kashmiri Stag); once only 150 in number are now counted more than 400. Dagwan River feeds the park which is full of trout fish.
Best Time to Visit:
The park remains open for the public all over the year excluding winter months due to snow and extremely cold temperature. It is really hard to cross the terrain and spot any animal in the park. Though, visiting here from September to November can be rewarding as the climate here remains soothing leading to flora & fauna flourishing to the peak. From December to April, the park remains closed.
After walking and spending around 3 hours in the park, you will be served a hot lunch in the middle of the serene jungle. Chances are that you may get to relish a fresh trout in the lunch cooked by our team.
We will start the garden tour in the late afternoon. We will stroll around the delightful gardens, sprawled around the Dal Lake. These gardens were made during the period of Mughal emperors. Chashme Shahi (The Royal Spring) and Pari Mahal (Above the Fairies) are two gardens which can be found less crowded and are interesting places to visit which are in our list sightseeing for the day.
O/N Sukoon with breakfast, lunch and dinner.
Day 12: Srinagar to New Delhi: FLIGHT
After breakfast, you will be assisted for transfer to the airport. Board a flight to New Delhi. Pick up and transfer to the hotel.
Afternoon sightseeing tour of Old Delhi including Red Fort, Jama Masjid and Raj Ghat (Red Fort remains closed on Monday).
The Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan established Shahjahanabad city in 1648 which is now known as Old City. One of the most prominent monuments built during the Mughal dynasty in Old Delhi, Red Fort is a grand monument built with red sandstones. You will get to visit the Diwan-i-Khas (Hall of Private Audience) and Diwan-i-Aam (Public Audience Hall). One of the largest mosques of the country, Jama Masjid is located on the opposite side of the fort. The mosque was built by Shah Jahan. After this, you will visit Raj Ghat, the place where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated.
Back to the hotel for wash, change and dinner. After dinner, transfer to the airport fly back to the hotel.
Day 13: Departure
1. Optional evening of traditional music and song can be arranged whilst at Sukoon houseboat with a lavish and rich typical Kashmiri dinner called Wazwan (please ask us for a supplement).
2. Optional local traditional folk dance and music can be arranged on the last evening at Saboo Resort with supplement price.
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Prices per person
01 paying person in a Single Room
02 paying persons in a Double Room