MonasteriesLadakh (meaning "land of high passes) is the land of Indo-Aryan people and Tibetan descent situated in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, India. The area lies between Kunlun mountain range in the north and the Great Himalayas to the south. Ladakh borders Tibet to the east, the Lahaul and Spiti to the south, the Kashmir alley and Baltiyul regions to the west, and the trans–Kunlun territory of Xinjiang to the far north. Geographically Ladakh a different world on this earth lies in the Great Himalayan rain shadow, no monsoon during the summer, but receives snowfall throughout its long (November – Late May) winter. As Ladakh lies on the tri- junction of the historic ‘Silk Route’ from Sinkiang to West Asia and to the plains of India, it was an important station for International trade. People of Ladhak are devoutly Buddhist. Since 1960 after the of Tibetan border is ceased, the Government of India has been able to promote tourism in Ladakh successfully. Ladakh is renowned for its remote mountain beauty and culture. It is sometimes called "Little Tibet" as it has been strongly influenced by Tibetan culture.
Leh, the most important city and Headquartrs of Ladakh district, is located in the Indus river valley on the old trading routes from Kashgar, Tibet, and Kashmir. Its importance as a trading town slowed down with the partition of British India, and ended with the closure of the border in 1962 during the Sino-Indian war. Since opening to tourists in 1974, it has become a bustling tourist town. Since 2000, domestic (Indian) tourists have started visiting Ladakh, with a dramatic increase since 2010. It's a small town, easy to get most places by foot. The old town is a compact area of mud brick houses and narrow lanes directly to the east of Main Bazar. Changspa is the agricultural "suburb" northwest of the center, with many guesthouses. The main Bazaar's elevation is 3505 meters, so take it easy on your first few days there or risk possible altitude sickness. Even experienced high altitude travellers (Andes) might have some trouble.
Sindhu Darshan Festival : Celebrated on the Guru Poornima(day of the full moon, the 3 day long festival is an effort to endorse the Sindhu river( Indus river) in fostering communal and social harmony of India.
Hemis Festival : Major monasteries in the Ladakh region hold their own monastic festival which are not only strictly religious but also serve as a means of social entertainment. The most important among the monastic festivals is the Hemis Festival held at Hemis Monastery. The event marks the important dates in Tibetan form of Buddhism. Thangkas are displayed, Chamms, a form of Mask dance are performed along with a host of other cultural events.
Ladakh Festival :The 15 days Ladakh festival showcases Ladakh’s age old traditions and customs. Events include horse Polo, Archery et al.
Planes fly year round, and are the only option in the winter. Book early and give yourself at least a few days of flexibility as flights are often delayed due to weather conditions. Air India, Jet Airways and GoAir have daily flights from Delhi. Air India Flights are also available from Srinagar, and Jammu. Those arriving by air are strongly advised to rest for at least one day in order to acclimatize to the high altitude. (See article on altitude sickness) When leaving, make sure you have a printed copy of your ticket, otherwise you will not be able to enter the airport.RAIL
The closest train stations are Pathankot or Chandigarh, both at least three days away by bus. A new station added recently is Udhampur which is linked by rail to Jammu.ROAD
There are two roads in to Leh, one from Manali in Himachal Pradesh in the south, and one from Srinagar in the west. Both routes are equally spectacular in different ways, and both are time consuming with winding, narrow roads, and numerous military checkpoints. The main advantage of taking the road from Srinagar, covering a distance of 434 km (270 mi), is that it runs at a lower altitude, and thereby reduces the risk and severity of altitude sickness. It is also open longer - normally from the beginning of June to October - and follows the traditional trade route between Ladakh and Kashmir, which passes through many picturesque villages and farmlands. The disadvantage is that it passes through areas of higher risk of militant troubles. It takes two long days, with an overnight stop inKargil. Tickets cost Rupees 370/470 on ordinary/deluxe buses. The route from Manali to Leh, covering a distance of 473 km (294 mi), is one more commonly taken by tourists. It takes two days, normally with an overnight stop either in Keylong (alt. 3096) or in tent accommodation in Sarchu (4253) or Pang (4500). Making the first stop in Keylong drastically reduces the risk of altitude sickness (AMS). There is also a direct bus from Manali to Leh, which takes around 24 hours. It is possible to book tickets direct Delhi-Leh, but the best option is to break off the journey in Manali and at the lower end of Lahaul : Sissu , Keylong (main population center) or Jispa - all around 3100 altitude. It traverses one of the highest road passes in the world and is surrounded by wild rugged mountains. The scenery is fantastic, though it is definitely not for the faint hearted. This historical trade route was linked to Yarkhand and was severed by the India-China war in 1962, and later was transformed in to military supply road. Reliable access is limited from mid-June to end-September, as it is blocked by snow for rest of the year. Government buses & privately operated deluxe buses run from Srinagar and Manali when roads are open. Jeeps are available to both the routes. Distances: Srinagar-Leh 434 Km Manali-Leh 473 Km Srinagar-Kargil 204 Km Delhi-Leh 1047 Kms Leh-Kargil 234 Km Kargil-Padum (Zanskar) 240 Km Leh-Deskit (Nubra Valley) 118 Kms.
Buses and taxis and cars are available for all the tourists destinations.