Manali-Leh Himalayan Epic Tour
Beautiful Ladakh is the home of one of cycling’s epic journeys. Riding over some of the highest passes in the world this cycle journey takes us from the forested foothills of the Himalaya to the spectacular lunar landscapes of Ladakh. Our route weaves crosses the Indian Himalaya passing dramatic monasteries and the timeless beauty of a genuinely untouched land.
• Pedal over 6 stunning Himalayan mountain passes
• Soak in the extraordinary otherworldliness of the landscape
• Ride yourself into cycling folklore as you take on one of the riding world’s ultimate challenges
• Enjoy Ladakh’s famed hospitality, homely food and fun-loving way of life.
14 Nights 9 hotels/5 nights luxury camping
Group Size: 4-10
Flights: In/Out New Delhi
No.of days cycling: 10
Average Daily Ride: 61Km
Vehicle Support: 100%
Manali Leh Himalayan Epic Tour
This is Himalayan riding at it’s zenith as we ride through the mountain ranges of the Zanskar, Pir Panjal and the Himalaya itself cycling over some of the highest ridable passes in the world. Discover your inner mountain goat as you take on the challenge of the Khardungla, take tea and overnight at the legendary Zing Zing Bar. Marvel at the More Plains the high altitude desert like landscape cut through by glacial rivers. Refresh and recharge at the historic Leh, a place that feels like nothing else on earth set in a majestic landscape of Monastries and Palaces. It’s taken Mountain Bike Kerala 20 years to make this tour happen and it’s been well worth the wait.
Day 1: Arrive Delhi: Rest up and take a short tour of Delhi’s sights.
Day 2: Mandi: Morning train to Chandigarh: Drive to delightful Mandi for overnight stay in the former home of the Maharajah.
Day 3: Mandi-Manali. It’s a 5-Hour scenic bus ride to the gateway to the Himalayan getaway of Manali (2020m). Bike build/ briefing and plenty of time to explore Manali’s famed colourful bazaars and temple. Overnight Manali.
Day 4: Manali Ride (32km). Stretch the travel out of your legs with a beautiful acclimatisation ride to the Solang Valley returning via the hot sulphur springs at Vaishisht. Overnight Manali.
Day 5: Manali-Sissu (88km). We start climbing right from our hotel door in Manali through cedar and fir forests on route to the Rohtang Pass. The Rohtang La (3946m) is the dramatic gateway to the stark mountainous desert of Ladakh. From the top we descend almost 1000m to Khoksar were we follow the beautiful Chandra Valley to our camp at Sissu.
Day 6: Sissu-Jispa (58km). Spectacular scenery all the way as we ride through the beautiful Lahaul Valley to the small oasis town of Keylong and along the river to Istingri and Gemur before descending to our hotel in the super scenic village of Jispa.
Day 7: Jispa-Zing Zing Bar (35km). A steady short day in the saddle as we approach the Great Himalayan Range through pastureland to Darcha (3358m) followed by a steep switch back climb for 8km and then a pleasant 12km descent to the lake of Deepak Tal. From here it’s a steady but stunning climb on to our camp site situated near our favourite named place of all time Zing Zing Bar.
Day 8: Zing Zing Bar- Sarchu (48 km). Another magical day of cycling as we cross the Himalaya to Sarchu. We start with a long ascent to the Baralacha La Pass (4933m) passing the Suraj Kund; an isolated high altitude lake; on the epic climb to the top, the views are breathtaking. From the pass it’s mostly a descent to our dramatically situated campsite at Sarchu.
Day 9: Sarchu-Pang (80km). Today is definitely one for the climbers. It’s a steady 32km across the Sarchu Plains before the climbing starts in earnest at the Gata Loops, a series of 21 hairpin bends, and then on to the top of our first pass, the Nakli La at (4948m) With a short respite down to Whiskey Nallay it’s another pedal spinner up to the Lachalung La (5059m) crossing the Zanskar Range and down through incredible rock formations to our overnight camp Pang.
Day 10: Pang-Tsokar Lake (55km). Morning starts with a heart thumping 8km climb to the Mori Plains (4778m) and Rupshu, the waterless high altitude desert plain of the Tibetan Plateau, home to the hardy Changpas; tent dwelling Tibetan nomads who graze flocks of sheep and yaks in this endless landscape. A few more hours pedaling takes us to Tsokar Lake and our camp for the night near Pongunagu. Tsokar means ‘white lake’, and there are white salt deposits ringing the water. Look out for the ‘kiang’, the wild asses which roam the surrounding hills.
Day 11: Tsokar Lake-Lato (72km). Another great pass lies ahead as we make our way over the mighty Taglang La which, at 5350m, affords unbelievable views of both the Himalaya and the Karakorum Mountains. From the top it’s a belter of a descent through fields of barley and potatoes before reaching our hotel at Lato.
Day 12: Lato-Leh (77km). A super day in the saddle lies ahead as we follow the Kyamnar River down to the Indus Valley and all the way into Leh. We pass the dramatically located Thikse and the white washed ruins of Shey Palace into our destination Leh.
Day 13: Leh Rest Day. A well deserved rest day gives us a chance to relax and explore the sights of Leh, from the timeless feel of the bazaars and narrow back streets to the other-worldy ruins of the Old Royal Palace. Leh is a truly unforgettable place.
Day 14: Leh-Khardungla Pass-Leh (78km). Legs refreshed its time for perhaps the greatest challenge of the trip the ride to the Khardung La (5602m) which lays claim to be the highest motorable road pass in the world. Outlandish views are a constant as we climb and climb again to what feels like the roof of the world.
Day 15: Leh-Delhi. An early morning transfer to Leh airport for the dramatic flight across the Himalaya back to Delhi. Time for a stroll around Delhi and it’s famed historical sites.
Day 16: Return Flights/Onward Travel. Transfer to airport/further travel.
2020/21 Manali-Leh (New Delhi) 15 Night
2020 June 20th £1495/£1645* Available
2021 June 19th £1495/£1645* Available
*Double or Twin/Single Occupancy
Bike Hire Available at £150 for tour duration