Explore Culture & Tours (I) Pvt Ltd
Explore Culture & Tours (I) Pvt Ltd
Temisgam Phyang Trek



This sample itinerary can be adapted to your own specific needs, interests and requirements – just ask.


Upon arrival in Delhi, transfer to your hotel.

We rise early and take a morning flight over the Indian Himalayas to Leh. Our early start is rewarded by great views of snow-capped mountains and glacial lakes. It seems impossible that a town could exist in the heart of these mountains, but Leh, at an altitude of 3,505m, was an important staging post on the Silk Road.
We have time to look around this small town, allowing us time to acclimatise. The air is thinner at this altitude so a mild headache is common, but the air is clean and clear, and once we are used to it we can fully appreciate the refreshing contrast to the hot, muggy plains we have left behind.

Today we have an introduction to some of the monasteries of the Leh valley. The most famous in the area is Hemis, situated in a lovely hidden valley with a long mani (wall of prayer stones) fronting it. Founded in the early 17th century and part of the Drukpa order (Yellow Hat), it is one of the biggest and wealthiest in Ladakh. It has some excellent frescoes and Buddhist figures.
       All Ladakhi Buddhists are obliged to visit Hemis once in their lifetime. Thiksey gompa, set on a crag overlooking the Indus, is one of the most imposing monasteries in the area. Founded in the 15th century, it is part of the Gelukpa order (Red Hat) and is always alive with music and chanting. Situated in the former Summer Palace of the kings of Ladakh is Shey gompa, with ruined buildings all around.

Leaving Leh behind we begin with a journey along the Indus, passing gompas set amongst apricot orchards and fields of barley. The road offers stunning views at every turn - a taste of things to come. We pause to explore the gompa at Lamayuru - dating back to the 10th century, it’s one of the oldest in Ladakh. Its setting is spectacular, nestling atop an extraordinary, eroded cliff face overlooking the river valley.
We continue the short distance to Temisgam where we leave our vehicles and commence our 8-day trek. Mules carry our main bags as well as the tents, food, cooking equipment etc. that we will require over the next few days, leaving us to walk with nothing more than daysacs.

Over the next few days we fall into an easy routine. We tend to wake early and start the day with a hot cup of tea whilst breakfast is prepared. Once we have eaten we pack up the camp and start the day’s walk. Our pace is slow and deliberate – rushing at this altitude is pointless, as it leaves you out of breath and dizzy, whilst a slow pace allows us to fully enjoy the magnificent mountain scenery through which we walk. Lunch tends to be earlier than we are used to at home, as is dinner – once the sun has set temperatures fall quickly and the warmest place is inside a sleeping bag! From Temisgam we trek to Yangthang (3,600m) in an easier day’s walking that takes us down to the Akheur Takpo River and then steeply up to the Sermanchan La pass, at 3,500m. From here it is only a couple of hours to Yangthang, our base for two nights.
        Although the next day is a rest day, we can strongly recommend a walk to Ridzong gompa, an hour and a half from Yangthang. After our easy day we now walk to Likir, crossing the Charatse La pass on the way (3,650m). From Yangthang, we ascend, enjoying views of the Zanskar mountain range as we go. We hike along the edge of the Indus Plain before arriving in Likir, which in keeping with larger villages, has its own monastery.
                    From Likir we have a long, dry walk to the tiny hamlet of Rafta, which is home to just 3 or 4 families.  Whilst trekking we should keep a sharp look out for the eagles, marmot, fox, and deer that live up here in this apparently inhospitable environment.
    Next day we continue, first crossing the Mandan La pass at 3,400m to descend into Umla for our overnight stop, then enjoying an easier day’s walk to Taroo, a large village of some 70 families. Here we spend our last night camping, before our final day’s walk tomorrow.

From Taroo, it's not far to Phyang, a key village with an important gompa. The gompa here houses hundreds of statues and thangkas (Buddhist paintings) and is the venue for an important festival in July each year. From Phyang we make the short journey to Leh.

Today has been left free to allow for some further sightseeing or shopping. Most people take the opportunity to try some whitewater rafting on the mighty Indus River – a great way to enjoy the superb views from a different perspective (optional).

A morning flight sees us leave the high Himalayas behind and re-enter the hot and humid plains to the south. We have a free afternoon here - there are so many things to see, do and buy in Delhi and this is the perfect time to seek out those bargains. We’ll probably meet in the evening for a final meal together, to recount tales of our trek and to enjoy our last night in this fascinating country.

Transfer to International Airport for onward flight.

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