Always on Card Trips - Yashraj Sharma
We all had the time of our lives, and when I grow up, I want to take my family there again to revisit the fantastic experience and see them smile.
Now let me share my experience; till that day, I had only heard that Ladakh was a beautiful and mesmerizing place, but now I got to experience it in person.
Ladakh is most famous for breathtaking landscapes, crystal clear skies, the highest mountain passes, the highest motorable pass, and Buddhist monasteries.
We saw local monasteries and apricot fields in Ladakh and took two days to acclimatize to the weather.
Our next destination was Nubra valley, followed by Pangong lake.
This was my favourite experience on our trip to Ladakh.
The drive to Nubra Valley via Khardungla, the highest motorable road in the world, was all about the beautiful landscapes of Ladakh and adventure. With the zig-zag trail continuing till Hundar village... this drive was an unforgettable experience.
The descent from mighty Khardung La towards Hunder leaves us spellbound as the snowy surroundings drastically transform into the desert. Before we sense it, the double-humped camels at Hunder village offered us an exciting ride through the desert.
From Nubra valley, we visited the majestic Pangong lake...which is as big as the sea. We share its boundaries with the neighbouring country. Its crystal clear water is salty and changes its colour seven times a day due to the sun's position throughout the day. It is the world's highest saltwater lake in the world.
Our next destination was Kargil. We visited the war memorial. The sight of Tiger Hill and Tololing hill gave us a sense of pride and patriotism as the air was filled with selflessness and honour of the sacrifices of our Jawans who laid their lives in war.
From Kargil, we set off to Srinagar via Drass and Sonmarg. Drass, which is the second coldest inhabited place in the world.
In Sonmarg, we were mesmerized by the tall pine trees and beautiful 'Sind' river playing hide and seek with us.
The next day we reach the summer capital city of Jammu and Kashmir... Srinagar.
As we reached there, mesmerizing view of Dal lake welcomed us with open arms. A Shikara was ready to give us a ride to our royal houseboat. It was my first experience of staying on a houseboat.
This stay proved that the beauty of an old-world setup is unparallel. The sight of moving shops of basic amenities in Shikaras is a memorable and unforgettable experience. We bought seeds and flower bulbs from there, and I also tried my hand at the Shikara ride.
We saw the Nishat garden there. It was a myriad of flowers, fountains and lush green grass.
The next day we explored Pahalgam...where we saw Aru valley, Betaab valley and Chandanbari. All were so majestic that they couldn't be summarised in words.
From Pahalgam, we came back to our home.
However, it's not my first time to the mountains for a vacation. But, this trip was so different in the way that we came across snow-capped mountains, clear skies full of stars, colourful rocky mountains (red, green and brown), majestic lakes, deserts, sand dunes and what not?! It was only possible as we took a road trip to Ladakh.
We came across 9 passes during our trip, making it a memorable trip.
On completing 3200 km of the magnificent journey by car, I realized the true meaning of Incredible India!!