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Once you've arrived in Delhi, you'll be met and transferred to your hotel where you will have the rest of the evening at leisure to rest up before you flight to Amritsar the next day.
This morning we will transfer you to the airport for your onward flight to Amritsar. Upon arrival you will be met and transferred to your hotel. This evening we drive to the Wagah Border crossing (a land crossing between India/Pakistan) to watch the highly animated ‘Flag Lowering’ ceremony - a must for any visitor to the north of India.
This morning enjoy a full day guided tour of Amritsar. Driving north to Dharamsala offers some dramatic scenery, where rolling foothills rise high toward snow capped peaks. Dharamsala, the British hill station turned Tibetan settlement, home to the Dalai Lama and thousands of Tibetan refugees offers a sense of peace and tranquility to all those who arrive.
We have guided sightseeing of the area surrounding the Dalai Lama’s residence, Dharamsala’s main Buddhist Temple - Tsug Lakhang and the Norbulingka Institute - centre for Buddhist learning and handicrafts.
En route to Manali a stop is made at Palampur - a pretty hill station enclosed by aged British tea plantations. Touring a colonial plantation, set upon the mounting slopes of Kangra Valley, criss crossed by babbling brooks offers a chance to enjoy a fine cuppa. Arriving to Manali, the adventurous can opt to go white water rafting, mountain biking or skiing. Or simply spend the afternoon relaxing.
Enjoy a half day sightseeing tour of the city and an afternoon of leisure.
Continuing north and rising to 3980 metres above sea level along the Rhotang Pass we arrive at the village of Keylong - 120 km from the Tibetan border.
En route to Sarchu there is time to stop and explore Sahsur Gompa, a beautiful Buddhist Temple built in the 17th century housing priceless 5 metre ‘Tankha’, (wall painting) depicting all 84 sidhas of Buddhism.
Rudyard Kipling said of the region “Surely the Gods live here this is no place for men.” Travelling over the Tanglang La Pass at a dizzying height of 5350 metres confirms our arrival to the remote and sparsely populated region of Ladakh. Cradled by the Karakoram and the Great Himalayan ranges, the vast and often snow covered desert is often discribed as the last ‘Shangri-La’, (land of high mountain passes) and is one of the last enclaves of Mahayana Buddhism, Ladakh’s principle religion for nearly a thousand years, now much suppressed in its native homeland of Tibet. The following 3 days are spent exploring this delightful region.
We have a Leh city tour with visits to the Sankar Gompa and Shanti Stupa.
We have guided touring of Hemis Monastery, Shey Monastery - a former royal palace and Tikse Gompa - a 12 story high complex resembling Potala Palace in Lhasa, housing Buddhist art, statues, art and swords.
Alchi is set amongst the desolate gorges of the Indus River and spectacular mountains. Here we will visit the Alchi Gompa, a must see Buddhist Temple dating back to 1000 AD.
Today we head back to Leh.
Today set out for Kargil, the day will mostly be taken up by driving but the epic sights of the himalayas all around will make the time fly by. This is not your ordinary scenery. En route a stop will be made at Sonmarg - known as the gateway to Tibet - where the views are astounding. At around 2800 metres above sea level the surrounding mountains dwarf the valley as they rise to 5000 metres and beyond, snow capped mountains truly give the sense of high altitude.
This morning after breakfast onward transfer to Srinagar upon arrival and transferred to your hotel. The rest of the evening is free for you to enjoy.
This morning we board one of the colourful shikara to visit the floating gardens, known as "Rad" in Kashmiri, where mounds of earth make for a fascinating display as they protrude from the water topped with all sorts of growing local produce. Later we visit some of the stunning Mughal Gardens that Srinagar is famous for. We visit the terraced Nishat Bagh or Nishat Garden on the eastern side of the lake, Nishat Bagh translates in Hindustani as "Garden of Joy" which is entirely fitting. We also have a full tour of the old city.
This morning after breakfast onward transfer to Srinagar airport and your onward flight to Delhi. Upon arrival in Delhi we will transfer you to the airport for your flight home.
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