About Spiti Valley
Spiti valley, also known as the “Middle Land” is a Trans-Himalayan terrain bordering with Tibet at an average altitude of 4000 meters. Spiti valley is home to some of the oldest monasteries in the Himalayan region like Tabo monastery, Dhankar monastery, Sherkhang monastery and Kye monastery, strong hold of Buchen Lamas in Pin Valley, famous for Tibetan medicine system and Amchis, fossils of Langza village, highest motorable villages and passes, scenic lakes, a 1000-year-old culture, tough life, beautiful villages and people and out of this world landscape. Come and explore with us as we travel to a civilization frozen in time. Spiti Fixed Departures have been planned in a way that you explore Spiti like a local and at a pace that helps you acclimatize and enjoy at the same time.
Winters in Spiti
- It gets very cold in winter i.e. December through February with temperatures hitting - 30C. You will need to be mentally and physically fit and must have done some high altitude travel in order to be able to handle travelling through this terrain.
- All hotels and guest houses will be shut at the time and you will only get homestays which have dry ecofriendly squatting toilets. You will need to be okay with this as wet toilets are not available due to water lines freezing.
- Because of the water lines freezing, the locals need to carry the water from a nearby water source and hence having a bath while you are in Spiti will not be possible.
- In peak winter i.e. January and early February all the places might not be open due to adverse weather conditions. We will keep you updated of the same in case any last minute changes need to be made to your plan.
- Winter time is off season in Spiti, and you will not have many options in terms of activities, and because of the cold, you won’t be able to move around as much and will end up spending time in the homestay. We recommend travelers to make the most of the situation, and turn their time at the homestay as of getting to know more about Spitian life, food and culture.
- Because of winter, there will not be many options in terms of food and in a homestay you will need to be understanding and eat the hearty but basic food that your hosts provide.
- Be prepared to be understanding and flexible, as we can make last minute plan changes due to bad weather for your safety and wellbeing.
Winter Wildlife Excursion Fixed Departure Date
- 7th - 14th March 2020
Spiti Valley in Winter Event Details
- Route: Chandigarh - Rampur - Tabo - Dhankar - Kaza - Key – Khibber - Langza - Hikkim - Komic - Rampur – Chandigarh
- Duration: 7 nights/ 8 days
- Cost: Rs. 23,700/- (excluding GST)
Spiti Valley Winter Trip Itinerary
Day 1 - Chandigarh to Rampur
Arrive at Chandigarh in the morning and head towards Rampur. Lose yourself amidst scenic valleys on either side of the road. Reach Rampur and take it easy in the evening. Meet your guide and get to know your fellow travelers over dinner that night. Overnight stay at Rampur.
Day 2 - Rampur to Tabo via Nako
Early in the morning (around 4 am) leave for Tabo. The journey will take about 9-10 hours if everything goes as planned. Enjoy a nice, warm, early morning breakfast with a view of the mountains at Tapri. On your way you will notice the terrain change and you will see the end of tree line. See the confluence of Spiti and Sutlej river at Khab. We shall have a lunch break at the scenic Nako village. Dinner and overnight stay at Nako homestay.
Day 3 - Tabo to Kaza via Dhankar
Wake up early in the morning and enjoy your breakfast. After breakfast visit the “Ajanta of Himalayas”- The Tabo Monastery which is close to a 1000 years old now. The murals, thankas and paintings are believed by the locals to have been made in a single night by the Gods themselves. On your way visit Dhankar Monastery, if the road is open - Dhankar used to be the Seat of the King in ancient times- the most beautiful setting for a monument which hangs on a cliff and overlooks the confluence of the Spiti and Pin rivers. Overnight stay at Kaza.
Day 4 - Snow drive Langza, Hikkim, Komic and back to Kaza
This morning we go on a snow drive towards Langza, Hikkim and Komic. On your way, we will make a couple of designated stops for you to take some pictures. Make the most of your homestay experience by learning about local life, festivals and traditions from your host family. Overnight stay at Kaza.
Day 5 and Day 6 - Kaza to Kibber, Chicham via Key - Wildlife Excursion
Today we head to either Khiber/Chicham via Key depending on which area has seen the maximum amount of trails during the season. The snow leopard is a very shy animal and keeps changing its tracks basis where it’s prey is. We will know which village to visit before your trip commences and will keep you informed. Your stay will be arranged in any of these villages according to the sightings. For these two days, we will be tracking the snow leopard and other wildlife following their trail surrounding the villages. Tracking any wildlife, is all about patience, keeping as silent as possible so as to not spook the animal and a whole lot of luck! Be prepared to do a lot of waiting and sitting in the snow. On your way to Khibber/ Chicham, you will stop by Key monastery. Kye monastery is on top of a mountain overlooking the Spiti valley and the Spiti river. Key is also the centre of learning for monks belonging to the Gelug sect.
Day 7 - Kaza/Kibber to Rampur
We leave early morning today for Rampur and as it is a long journey, breakfast and lunch will be done along the way. Overnight stay at Rampur.
Day 8 - Rampur to Chandigarh
Leave early in the morning to catch your evening flight from Chandigarh back to your hometown. Trip ends here.
What is included in the tour
- All Transport in a Tempo Traveller from Day 1 to Day 8
- Accommodation on a twin sharing basis in a hotel
- Accommodation on twin/ triple sharing basis in the homestay
- Breakfast, lunch and dinner for Day 2 to Day 7
- Dinner on Day 1 and Breakfast and lunch on Day 8
- All entry fees to monasteries in Spiti (if any)
- Local Guide from Day 2 till day 7
What is NOT included in the tour
- Bus/flight/train tickets till Chandigarh and back
- Snacks and beverages (except the ones with meals)
- Any kind of insurance
- Personal expenses like camera charges, etc.
- Any kind of cost which is not mentioned in the cost includes above
- All expenses incurred due to unforeseen and unavoidable circumstances like roadblocks, bad weather, flood, etc.
- Cost of any medical emergency or other emergency if required
- 2/3-liter water bottle
- Basic hiking/ training shoes
- Lip balm
- Some thermals
- Woolen socks
- Woolen cap
- Wind cheater
- Sweat shirt
- Woolen gloves
- Toilet paper
- Extra camera batteries
- Identity proof
In case you need to cancel your plans for the trip due to avoidable/unavoidable reasons, please do notify us via email.
The cancellation charges will be as follows:
- 60 to 46 days prior to date of departure: 20% of the tour cost
- 45 to 16 days prior to date of departure: 30% of the tour cost
- 15 to 8 days prior to date of departure: 50% of the tour cost
- Less than 7 days prior to date of departure: No refund
- No show No Refund
- Event Tickets cannot be transferred to another date against cancellation
- Event Tickets cannot be transferred to another person against cancellation
Minimum requirement: The trip runs if we have a minimum of 4 confirmed participants. In the event that we don’t get the requisite numbers we can run with less than 4 participants if participants are willing to pay extra. We will revise the costing according to the no. of participants. Alternatively, in the event the trip gets cancelled, we will reimburse the amount paid to the participants minus any minimal bank charges that may have been cut.
Room Sharing: All stays in guesthouses will be on a twin sharing basis except for homestays where it will be as per the layout of the homestay i.e. 2,3 or 4 people in one room basis the size of the room. Rooms are divided amongst same sex participants which is most comfortable for solo travellers. Only if there is a couple amongst the group will they get to stay together.
Type of participants: Our groups usually have participants between the ages of 20-40 and we have a healthy 50-50 male to female ratio in the group, with friends, couples and solo travellers alike.
Homestays: You shall stay in homestays where you shall be sharing some space with a local family. It will be a wonderful experience to see the life of people at this altitude and how content they are. Stay and food will be very basic and they shall serve what they eat.
Dry Toilets: Since there is lack of water in cold deserts and carrying water is not easy at such high altitudes- the concept of dry toilets have been prevalent in Spiti since the beginning. While trekking we shall be covering a terrain where all the homestays have dry toilets. We can also provide a stool if some people have difficulty squatting but there shall be an extra charge for the same.
Bathing and Hot Water: Since we shall be around 4000 meters, getting hot water for everyone will not be possible. Hot water for drinking shall not be an issue but for bathing it will not be possible.
Important luggage during the trek: For the trek you shall be carrying only one-way pack which shall have all the important stuff that you shall need for the trek. Rest of the rest shall be left at Kaza in our hotel. You will also be required to carry your own water bottles which can be refilled at various places.
The guide won’t carry your luggage: The guide shall be carrying his own stuff so he won’t be able to carry your stuff. So be very particular about what you are carrying for the trek as you will have to carry it. In case extreme condition the guide will help but not otherwise. Please keep this in mind.