Khardung La Pass

Ladakh trip is incomplete without conquering Khardung La. Lying north of Leh Town, Khardung La is situated at an elevation of 5602 meters (18,379 ft) according to the local summit sign of Border Road Organization (BRO) who are in charge of the road maintenance but modern machines readings have revealed the elevation of Khardung La to be 5,359 meters (17,582 ft).

Khardung La is a strategically important pass lying on a major caravan road from Leh to Kashgar. In ancient and medieval time thousands of camels and horses took this trade route to supply goods and valuables. Today it is used to carry supplies to Siachen glacier and is of high logistic importance to Indian Army.

Most of the Ladakh travel packages feature Khardung La as one of the highlights of Leh Ladakh trip. Khardung La is also the highest motorable pass in the world according to the road sign put up by BRO at the summit and bikers from around the world visit this mountain pass on motorcycles and mountain biking (bicycling) from the pass is also a popular tour activity. This mountain pass in Ladakh also serves as the gateway to Nubra and Shyok Valleys which are popular tourist destinations in Ladakh.

On top of Khardung La, one could take flight up stairs to a small chorten located on hillock covered with white sheet of snow. Tibetan prayer flags add myriad colors to otherwise stark landscape yet the views from the top of Khardung La is stunning. There is an army canteen where tea, snacks and Maggi Noodles. Public convenience is also available on the height and there is a souvenir shop from where you could buy memento of your trip to ‘highest motorable pass in the world’