Indian Himalayan Small Group Tour

Ancient Cultures of the Indian Himalaya – Spiti Valley and Kinnaur

India contains 70% of the world’s himalayan ranges, yet few people think about visiting them. Therefore, this region remains authentic, traditional and untouched by western visitors.

On this remarkable journey you will walk on the most inspiring mountain trails, drive over some of highest roads and bridges, visit remote wildlife reserves, witness age old temples, exquisite villages, traditional architecture and tribal lifestyles. Adventuresome, but not difficult!

HIGHLIGHTS
  • Visit traditional remote villages
  • Fabulous ancient monasteries still in use
  • Explore the amazing Spiti Valley
  • Interact wth the village people
  • Attend puja with the monks in a reclusive setting
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Buddhist women in Nako Village, Spiti Valley

  • 1
    Day 1: Arrival in Delhi transfer to hotel near airport.
  • 2
    Day 2: Delhi

    Afternoon sightseeing of Old & New Delhi (exact sites TBD based on the group's past India experiences, including a rickshaw ride through the old Chandi Chowk bazaar).

  • 3
    Day 3:Chandigarh - Shimla

    We board Shatabdi Express to Chandigarh and drive to Shimla, in foothills of the Himalayas

  • 4
    Day 4:Sarahan

    We visit Sarahan, a beautiful village surrounded by apple orchards and dominated by Shrikhand Mahadev Peak (16908 Ft), which resembles the "Shivling."

  • 5
    Day 5-6: Kalpa

    Drive to Kalpa, which boasts the best view that one can have of the mighty Kinner Kailash Range of the Greater Himalaya. Rising from its base it is 19848 feet of sheer rock. Arrive in time for lunch at our hotel, the lovely Kinner Villa. Full day visits to the ancient and exquisite villages Chini, Peo, Kothi, Pangi and Telangi.

  • 6
    Day 7: Nako

    The village of Nako lies at an altitude of 11890 ft, high above the vast stretch of Spiti Valley. It was once a very important center of Buddhism in the region. There are seven temples belonging to different periods of Buddhism between 11th and 12th centuries distributed all over the village, including a monastic complex on its western edge. Boasting four temples and a number of additional buildings, this complex preserves the earliest artistic heritage. The austere and unornamented exteriors of the buildings give little hint of its important artistic and spiritual legacy that lies within these walls.

  • 7
    Day 8: Tabo

    Today we enter Spiti Valley. Geographically and archeologically, Spiti is a living museum. The mountains are devoid of any vegetation due to erosion by wind, sun and snow over thousands of years. Our vehicles climb up to the village Tabo (10000 Ft.). Built in the year 996 ACE. HH The Dalai Lama performed the Kalachakra teachings/ceremony here in 1996, being closest ever to Tibet.

  • 8
    Day 9-10: Kaza

    We join the monks in their morning Puja (prayer) ceremony at Tabo monastery. Then drive to Dhankar, the ancient capital of Spiti. Dankar Gompa (12500 ft) was built in the 12th century.

    Next, we drive to Lhalung, a magnificent village of just 45 houses. In this village stands the second most interesting monastery of Spiti. Like Tabo, it was designed as a Chokhor site, a place for learning and debate as opposed to a simple chapel for worship by the local people.

    On the 2nd day day we experience the highest monastery that houses the oldest and largest collection of Tankha paintings in the world- Ki Monastery; the highest road-connected permanently inhabited village in Asia - Kibber and the highest vehicle fuel outlet in the world at Kaza.

  • 9
    Day 11: Kunzum Pass-Rohtang Pass

    A thrilling drive over the famous Kunzum Pass, en-route visit Lahaul Valley. Aptly called no man's land, it is dominated by glaciers and rocky mountains cut across by the Chandra River. We pass the Bar Shingri Glacier, 25kms long and 3 kms wide, the largest glacier in Himachal Pradesh. We continue over the Rohtang Pass, where we will stop for refreshments and soak up the beauty.

  • 10
    Day 12: Manali

    We enjoy an easy day of strolling around the picturesque "Valley of the Gods." Visit Dhungri Temple (also known as Hadimba Temple by locals) and the quaint village Nagar with its many ancient temples including the 11th-12th century Temple Gauri and the Tripura Sundri Devi Temple.

  • 11
    Day 13-14: Kullu-Bir-Baijnath-Taragarh

    Drive through Kullu to Kangra, "Valley of Temples." We visit the most ancient and oldest existing Shiva temples at Baijnath. Baijnath houses one of the oldest existing Shiva temples. Just below the village is the Tashijong Gompa that is the focus of a small Tibetan community who hail from Kham province in Tibet.

    We visit Sherab Ling Monastery, home of the 2003 Grammy winning chanting monks. (Best Traditional World Music Album). Sherab Ling Monastery nestles in the gentle pine-forested foothills of northern India's Kangra Valley, the seat of its founder His Eminence Ti Situpa XII, a leading Tibetan Buddhist teacher and peace campaigner. Here the monks perform mesmerizing prayer ceremonies, as part of their daily lives, originating many centuries ago in the great Buddhists monasteries of Tibet. We attend Mahakala Ceremony with the monks, the day's closing ritual.

  • 12
    Day 15: Norbulingka-Dharamsala

    On way to Dharamsala (McLeod Ganj), the official residence of HH The Dalai Lama and seat of the Tibetan Government in exile we will visit the institute of Tibetan Arts and Handicrafts Norbulinka.

  • 13
    Day 16: Amritsar

    We drive to Amritsar, in the state of Punjab, in the Himalayan foothills called the Shivaliks. Amritsar, home of the Golden Temple, is one of the most ancient and fascinating cities in India. It is an important seat of Sikh history and culture.

  • 14
    Day 17: Delhi-Depart

    Fly to Delhi and Depart.

  • 15
    Day 17: OR JOIN OUR KASHMIR-LADAHK TOUR

    Fly to Srinagar.

  • Trip Length

    17-day trip begins and ends in Delhi

  • Dates

    August 30-September 15, 2019

  • Land Cost

    From: $4285

  • Accommodations

    5-star and heritage hotels

  • Group Size

    4-12 guests

  • Included Meals

    All Meals starting Day 2

  • Reading List

    Suggested Reading

  • Trip Preparations

    India Visa On Arrival

  • Extend Your Trip

    Ladakh Festival Tour with Kashmir
    16 Days, Follows Ancient Cultures
    LEARN MORE >

Delhi, India

Shimla, India

Kalpa, Himachal Pradesh, India

Tabo, Himachal Pradesh, India

Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India

Manali, Himachal Pradesh, India

Dharamshala, Himachal Pradesh, India

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