Nubra Valley – A Comprehensive Travel Guide
nubra valley

Forbidden areas have an unspeakable charm. Such is the lure of Nubra valley. Though open for tourism, the critical area with its borders touching POK, beautiful mountains, flowing rivers and a cool breeze traversing the valley makes Nubra a very desired and yet unvisited tourist destination. 

The valley offers very much in a small area with the positive part being less tourist footfall. The area is peaceful and inviting, giving away a glimpse of heaven with tourists setting up camps beside the flowing Nubra and Shyok rivers. The area has hidden lakes and monasteries that give it a spiritual vibe. Stick with the Cliffhangers India and explore why you should visit this valley and that too, very soon. 


Things to do in Nubra Valley

Cliffhangers give detailed information about the Nubra Valley. Read the best activities to do in this serene valley. 

1. Camping

The many comfortable hotels in Nubra Valley lack the allure of the camp set up beneath the stars beside the flowing Nubra River. The clear skies and the smell of nature forbid anyone to hide themselves behind concrete. Camping in the valley is one of the most memorable tourist experiences. 

2. Double hump Camel ride in Hunder 

The double hump Bactrian camel provides a natural seat with back support to the rider. The ride of the innocent creature on the white sand of Hunder, surrounded by snow-capped mountains and a slow lull on the way gives one a calm sleepy feeling and makes you feel like a child again. 

3. Trekking to Turtuk village 

The touching Balti culture is bound to inspire one to walk kilometers to the Turtuk village. The spectacular nature of local life, the scenic Turtuk waterfall, and calming Turtuk mosque are all reasons why you should trek in Nubra valley to Turtuk village. The trek offers a scenic view of the landscape and makes you realize that the journey is as beautiful as the destination. 

4. Cycling

Wari la Pass, the highest motorable road in India, gives a beautiful sight of the whole valley and is a famous biking spot. The silk road is also a popular destination where tourists and locals hire bicycles to travel to. Hire a bicycle in the valley and travel to the hidden destinations. 

5. Rafting in Zanskar River

Zanskar river with its rapid ups and downs and adventurous flow makes a perfect river for river rafting. With a rafting pathway of around 35 km, the Zanskar river snakes around various off-beat towns and picturesque places. One can experience Ladakh at its best while rafting in Zanskar. 

6. Picnic at Yarab Tso 

The holy lake of Yarab Tso is famous for the calm it offers to its visitors. By looking at the crystal-clear water and mountains reflected in it, you can instantly feel the peace within. The pristine lake forbids anyone to put their feet in it. You will be inspired to keep the lake untouched once you witness its purity. 


Places to visit

A lot of tourists have this frequently asked query what are the best places to visit this place. Here are some of the exquisite places to see in Nubra Valley. 

1. Yarab Tso  

Yarab Tso is every traveler’s dream come true. A hidden lake at a 15 km hike from the Panamik village, clear, pristine, and calming as heaven itself seems like too good to be true. The lake is preferred by tourists for the tranquility it offers. The Yarab Tso hike is an experience of a lifetime. 

2. Samstanling Monastery 

Secluded from the commonplace, Samstanling monastery is a spiritual recluse for the monks as well as the tourists. The monastery is decorated with Red, Gold, and white and gives off an elevated vibe. Reached after a 50 km trek from the Sumur Village, this red and yellow monastery, marked by such colored flags, is a must-visit destination for tourists.

3. Hunder Sand dunes 

When visiting the Hunder Sand dunes, one is struck by how diverse the earth’s landscape is. A beautiful desert stretched out in front of a cold, snowy sky and lush mountain peaks creates an otherworldly atmosphere. Double-humped camels strolling around give it a lively vibe. The site offers camel safari, camping, and a spectacular view of Ladakhi’s white sands.

4. Panamik Village’s hot water springs 

The frontier village of India is an off-beat destination with so much to offer. The village is blessed with natural hot water springs whose water is said to be healing due to various natural salts in it. The experience of local life in its rawness that this village offers fills one with exhilaration and a promise of returning. 

5. Turtuk village 

A quiet little hamlet surrounded by beautiful apricot trees where people live peacefully away from worldly chaos. A few kilometers of a trek from the village takes us to the Turtuk waterfall. When we visit the village, it looks like modern-day destruction has left this place untouched. Peace and greenery is what define Turtuk village. 

6. Ensa Gompa 

Sitting on the top of the Panamik village is a 250-year-old monastery decorated with dark paintings. The Buddhist monastery is a luring destination in itself as it overlooks the snow-capped peaks of the Nubra valley and gives a mountain-top view of the beautiful valley. 


In Winter  

Winter comes in October and waves off in April. The cold that descends in winter in this region is not moderate but rather extreme. Snowfall begins in the valley in late December and goes on till January end. The average monthly temperature in Nubra valley in winter months is as give –

● October – 2 degrees celsius to 8 degrees celsius

● November – -4 degree celsius to 4 degrees celsius

● December – -17 degrees celsius to -7 degrees celsius

● January – -16 degrees celsius to -8 degrees celsius

● February – -16 degrees celsius to -6 degrees celsius

● March – -12 degrees celsius to -1 degrees celsius

● April – -1 degrees celsius to 9 degrees celsius

Most roads to reach the valley are blocked due to snow and passes are inaccessible. Frozen pathways and lakes are the characteristics of Nubra winter. If you want to plan a winter trip to this valley, Cliffhangers India will guide you to avoid the extremities and make a comfortable winter trip. 


Why is the Valley Famous 

The Valley is one of the most longed-for and famous places for tourists looking for mountainous and snowy terrains in India. The valley is said to be extremely beautiful and peaceful. The valley has attractions like the highest motorable road Khardung La Pass at over 18,000 ft. 

The pristine lakes, apricot orchards, ancient monasteries, white sand dunes of Hunder, double humped Bactrian Camels are all things that lure a tourist to visit and make this place the famous tourist spot of Ladakh. The small region has so much to offer in close vicinity. The primitive touch of life that Nubra Valley provides makes it an ideal destination for a quick trip.


Best Time to Visit

Nubra valley opens up with spring in late April. Almost all roads become accessible to reach the valley. By mid-May, all guest houses and hotels open up and tourists start arriving. Late April is the month of the blossoming of Apricot flowers in the valley. The valley is very colorful and sweet-scented in spring.

The weather recorded in the summer months in Nubra might go as high as 24 degrees Celsius. The best months to visit Nubra Valley are either June or September. The weather is warm and pleasant and the skies are clear. Sunshine is in abundance in both months. 

In September, tourist footfall is less, and yet all the guesthouses and tourist places are accessible. All places are less crowded and can be experienced peacefully. 


Distance from Pangong Lake

The Nubra valley to Pangong Tso district depends upon which route you will be taking. There are two routes that you can take to reach Nubra Valley. 

1. Nubra valley to Pangong Lake via Shyok 

Dikset – Khalsar – Agham – Shyok – Durbuk – Tangtse – Pangong Lake = around 160 km

2. Nubra valley to Pangong Lake via Wari La  

Diksit – Khalsar – Agham – Wari La – Sakti – Chang La – Durbuk – Tangtse – Pangong Lake = around 220 km

The first route is shorter and is around a 6-hour drive. The second route is longer and is around a 10-11 hour drive. The second route is less traveled by one but is becoming popular due to the high-altitude landscape witnessed on this route. 


Distance from Leh

To reach Nubra valley from Leh, two routes are generally accessed by tourists. Leh to Nubra Valley distance depends upon which route you are taking. 

1. Leh to Nubra valley via Khardung La 

Leh – Khardung La – Khardung Village – Khalsar – Diskit – Nubra = around 160 km

2. Leh to Nubra valley via Wari La 

Leh – Karu – Sakti – Waril La – Agham – Khalsar – Diskit – Nubra = over 200 km

The first route is a 6-hour drive to reach Nubra. The second route is a difficult one and is not really frequented by tourists to reach Nubra from Leh. It is an over 10-hour drive and the pathway is challenging.  


We at Cliffhangers India are here to guide you through your Nubra valley trip and would work our best to get you an experience of a lifetime. The area is perfectly safe and accessible. Choose your favorite month and pack up your gear. Cliffhangers India will be with you at every step of your trip. 


Frequently asked questions?

Why is the Valley so famous?

The Valley is one of the pristine valleys in the Ladakh region. The Valley is famous for its spectacular natural beauty, shimmering lakes, stunning villages, beautiful surroundings, and ancient monasteries. Camel safari is one of the major popular activities to do in Nubra. It is located 140 kilometers from Ladakh. One can also enjoy the scenic vistas of the entire valley in the summer months.

Is Nubra Valley in Ladakh or Leh?

Nubra Valley is located in the northeast part of Ladakh region around 140 kilometers from Leh. This is the only valley where you can find double-humped camels. You can witness panoramic views of the ancient monasteries and enjoy the camel safari during your trip to Nubra Valley.

What is the entry fee for Nubra Valley?

The entrance fee for Nubra Valley is 20 rupees per vehicle. There will be no charges for photography or any other activity. If you want to enjoy camel safari you have to charge extra for that. This is one of the major attractions to visit in Ladakh. You can visit here in the summer months for a better experience. 

Which is better Pangong or Nubra?

Both places are prominent tourist destinations. These places are must visit to go. Pangong Lake is a safe day trip but it will not give you much more to enjoy Nubra Valley is the most scenic to enjoy sightseeing in the Valley. Nubra Valley has the highest motorable road Khardung La Pass which is at a height of 18,000 feet. 

Can we cover Nubra Valley in one day?

Yes, you can explore Nubra in one day and enjoy sightseeing. Some of the major attractions that one can see in Nubra Valley are Tso Moriri Lake, Panamik village, Diskit monastery, Sumur, Lachang Temple, Hunder sand dune, etc. It is advisable to spend at least 1 day in Nubra Valley.

Is Nubra a cold desert?

Yes, Nubra Valley is one of the coldest places in Ladakh. This is one of the highest-altitude regions which sits at an elevation of 10,000 feet. It is one of the popular places to visit and explore its beauty. Apart from sightseeing in Nubra Valley, you can also enjoy camel safari, river rafting in Zanskar Valley, cycling in Nubra village, etc.

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