MARKHA VALLEY TREK
Trekking in India
Min Group Size
Ladakh really is a "Little Tibet". Although Tibet is politically part of China today, Ladakh, like parts of Nepal, is situated on the Tibetan plateau. Ladakh has many Tibetan refugees who fled Tibet with the invasion from China. The daunting height of the Himalaya adds to its isolation, even today the main road routes to Ladakh remain closed for more than six months of each year. Until 1979, there were no regular civilian flights into Ladakh so from October to June the region was completely cut off.
Today, it is full of amazing sights - strange gompas perched on soaring hilltops, dwarfed by snow capped mountains, the barren shattered looking landscapes splashed with small, brilliant patches of green and ancient palaces clinging to sheer rock walls. But most of all it is notable for its delightful people - friendly as only Tibetans can be and immensely colorful.
One of the most popular trek in Ladakh – it is a perfect combination of beautiful transhimalayan landscape with ladakhi villages. There are good chances to spot some high altitude wildlife.
Outline Itinerary ( 9 Days )
Fly Delhi – Leh (3500m)
Monastery visits in Leh (3500m)
Drive Leh to Chilling and trek to Skiu (3400m) 4-5hrs
Trek Skiu to Markha (3700m) 5-6hrs
Trek Markha to Thachungtse (4150m) 5-6hrs
Trek Thachungtse to Nimaling (4720m) 3-4hrs
Trek Nimaling to Shang Sumdo(3660m) over the Kongmaru La (5130m) 6-7hrs
Drive Shang Sumdo to Leh. 2-3 hrs
Fly Leh to Delhi
- Twin Share accommodation for 4 nights at Guest House in Leh
- Twin Share accommodation for 4 nights at Guest House in Leh
- All meals on the trip
- Monastery Entry fees, Camping fees
- Full board camping arrangements on the mountain with a large mess tent, tables & stools
- White Magic Trip Leader assisted by certified, experienced, English-speaking guides
- Mules for porterage of personal and group luggage
- All Transport as per the itinerary above
- Delhi-Leh-Delhi Airfare
- Sleeping Bag & Items of personal clothing
- Personal climbing equipment
- Air Fares, Visas, Insurance, Airport taxes, laundry, phone calls, beverages and bottled water, souvenirs and other expenses of a personal nature.
- Tips for guides, cooks & muleteers
- Any costs arising out of unforeseen circumstances such as bad weather, landslides, road conditions and any other circumstances beyond our control
What to Expect
Low temperatures & high altitudes are going to be our main concerns on this trip and
we must be adequately prepared to deal with them
Temperatures and Climate
Ladakh lies north of the Great Himalayan Range and is hence unaffected by the monsoon clouds which shed all the rain on hitting the Himalayas from the south. On the high plateau of Ladakh, the maximum daytime temperature low down in the valleys would be around 25°C, with night-time lows being around 15°C. At our highest camps, the night-time temperature could fall as low as minus 5°C. At high altitude, the sun has a very strong effect and it will feel hotter than the indicated temperatures. Ladakh usually has very stable weather from June to September. However mountains do generate their own weather systems and some rain or snowfall cannot be ruled out.
Once we get up to heights above 3000 m, altitude starts to become a concern and one must deal with it carefully. Our bodies slowly get used to the lower levels of oxygen in the air and the individuals who have acclimatised properly are able to climb to altitudes as high as Everest without any aided oxygen. This process of adaptation or acclimatisation does take time and the most important rule is to gain height slowly. The trip itinerary has been very well thought over and gives everyone plenty of time to get acclimatised. Our trip leaders are widely experienced in these matters and will be able to give you good advice to help minimize any temporary discomfort that you might experience. If you have suffered serious problems at altitude before, you should seek the advice of your doctor or a specialist. We are always ready to give advice on this subject.
You would need to have two bags for the trip – the main baggage and the day pack. Your main baggage on trek will be carried by pack animals and it should not weigh more than 15 kg. You would be walking with your day pack which should be large enough to carry your rain proof gear, a light fleece, water, packed lunch, cameras etc. Day packs which give you an easy access to your water bottles, and some loops to keep your trekking poles etc are far better than plain day packs. It’s a good idea to have slightly larger daypack than a smaller one as you might need to stuff in a lot of extra layers in the bag on the summit afternoon. It is possible to leave clothes or other items not required on trek at the group hotel.
Good physical conditioning is one of the keys and can make the difference between enjoying an outing and merely enduring it. Being physically ready is more important than years of experience. We suggest that you begin your training program at least a month before the departure. Any form of aerobic training, such as running, cycling, swimming, along with some strength training will help you a lot on the climb. Strength training with a pack is the most valuable thing you can do to prepare yourself. The best method is to go on long hikes or climbs with a heavy pack a couple of times in a week. But since mountains are not easily accessible to most of us, climbing stairs with heavy backpack is recommended
We will have a full serviced camp with camp cooks. On the trek, the food is a mixture of local and European, all purchased in Nepal and cooked for us by highly trained trek cooks. Menus vary from Indian fare to Chinese, pasta, cold cuts, sandwiches, eggs etc. The emphasis is on a high carbohydrate and largely vegetarian diet, which we have found to be easily digestible especially at high altitude. This is a fully inclusive package and all meals are included in the trip price. You might want to carry your favorite snack or some power bars with you for the long trekking days. We will provide you safe drinking water throughout the trek - it will be boiled with a dash of iodine. You could bring things which you enjoy eating -chocolates, power bars, dry fruits, candies, other snacks etc.
First aid accompanies each White Magic trip. All trip leaders have appropriate wilderness first-aid training and are experienced in dealing with a range of medical problems associated with adventure travel. We recommend that you bring your own personal medications and inform us of any medical condition, if you have.
At the time of booking you would be sent a detailed list of clothing and other checklist required for the trek.
You can get a visa in Kathmandu airport upon your arrival at USD 30 (or equivalent in other major currencies) for a 15 days visa, USD 50 for a 30 days visa and USD 125 for a 90 days Multiple visas, and you can also extend it later on if you wish. They have newly installed technology (visa machine) which makes it no longer necessary to have a passport photo. Important! Please bring 3 photos for your trekking permit, TIMS and for others.
Besides trekking packages and tour operation, we arrange international air tickets to the major airports of all over the world. Himalayan social journey travel agency is the one-stop travel solution company; we offer all travel related product at the best possible rates with excellent services.
Please keep this thing in your mind that there are some airport touts and scam artists who take advantage of tourists. They might offer to carry your luggage and they want a large amount of money. Sometimes they intimidate our drivers and even take away their signs. Anyway...if you want someone to help you with your luggage you can give them NOT MORE THAN 1 - 2 DOLLARS. This is a small hassle that tourists sometimes face upon arrival at the airport. Do not stress about this but just be aware not to give more than a few dollars for their luggage handling if you choose to take someone's services. Nepalese in general are very kind and hospitable people.
Some major currencies (USD, AUD and EURO) are accepted for both visas and in general. There are plenty of ATM's in both Kathmandu and Namche and credit cards are accepted in limited shops and many restaurants. Please note that only Nepali rupees are accepted on the trek.
Generally, the orientation meeting is scheduled in the Kathmandu hotel at 4 or 5 pm and this will be informed by our representatives after your arrival. The tour starts with an orientation meeting and ends up after the scheduled trip after the breakfast.
If you plan to arrive early or depart late please make sure you make extra hotel arrangements by contacting [email protected] And if you'll be spending extra time in Nepal please let us know. We will book your extra night accommodation at same trip hotels
For each tour date, there will be several separate groups. Each group will have a maximum of 14 people with its own experienced English speaking guide. During the trek, there will be a suitable number of porters to carry your luggage.
The cost of our trip is based on a twin-sharing basis so there will be two people accommodated in each room for the duration of the tour. If you prefer private accommodation or you are a solo traveller, you'll find the option for "single supplement". Additional cost will be applicable as a Single Supplementary Charge for the single room during the trip.
No refund will be made for 20% deposit amount in case of cancellation of trip for any other else reason. Having paid the full amount of any trip, you will get your money back but still, cancellation charge (20%) is invoiced to you. And for the voucher holders, since you have purchased the voucher from the deal companies, we have to follow their cancellation policy. But for both the conditions, we are flexible to postpone your trip in any later days. Written notification of your cancellation should be made to cancel any trip.
Sometimes travellers are unable to finish the scheduled trek due to the various reasons or they ended up not completing the trek/tour for health or personal reasons. In this case please realize that we cannot offer you any refunds for unused days on the tour/tour. You have to understand that our costs are the same as we have an obligation to pay our guides and porters for the time they have committed.
All the breakfast during your trip is included but the lunches and dinners are not except welcome dinner in the first day at the local restaurant. Meals during Kathmandu stay and trekking days cost from $5 to $8 per item depending on what you choose to eat.
There will not be any problem for vegetarian, most of the lodges serve vegetarian meals. We always recommend our clients to eat vegetarian meals to avoid food poisoning, eating heavy meals and non- vegetarian meals at a high altitude is not really safe for the stomach.
You have to manage yourself for the drinking water. There are two good options for having proper drinking water during the trek. You can bring water purification tablets or fill your bottle for a nominal fee from the recognized and regulated "pure water" stations along the trek. As the alternative, you can also easily purchase bottled water at the lodges. The bottled water costs USD 2$ - 4$ per litre. It is very important that you drink at least 3 litres of pure water daily during the trek.
The width of Nepal is only about 200 km on an average, but within this short distance, the altitude of the land rises from 60 m up to 8,848 m. Hence the weather depends upon the altitude of the place in Nepal. However, in general, Nepal has four climatic seasons: Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter.
Spring starts from March to May. The temperature of this season fluctuates between 20C to 30C (68F to 86F). Summer starts from June last to August. These are also the monsoon months with occasional evening-thunderstorms and hot temperature. Autumn starts from late September and ends by November. During this period, the climate is generally dry and mild with temperature fluctuating between 20C to 30C (68F to 86F). Winter starts from December until February. The mornings and evenings are very cold while the afternoon is pretty sunny. The temperature during these months rises from 10C to 20C (59F to 68F). At higher altitudes, it is cold during the winter months.
The trip hotel in Kathmandu does provide free storage services. So you can store your luggage and clothing that are not required for the trekking and you can collect it after your Trek and Tour.
There are telephones in some villages along the trekking routes from which you can make international calls. All our guides carry local sim cards both Nepal Telecom and N-cell in order to update the whereabouts and situation of our every client. You may pass the number of our guide to your family for the callback or you can make a call from the guide’s mobile and pay him directly for the international call too. Also, we have kept a satellite phone at Dingboche, which has a poor connection to the network of phones. Our guides use it during the case of emergency and also clients can use them by paying its rental fee. During the tour there will be easy access for International cal through cyber and communication Center. You will get Wi-Fi connection too in some of the places in the mountains for the extra cost.
Remember to bring TWO and THREE pin travel adapters! You can also buy the adapters in the supermarkets or electronic shops in the Kathmandu. Our guide can help you with it.
It’s difficult to give an exact amount of money that you should bring. Costs will vary according to how much you want to spend for shopping and where and what meals (lunch & dinner) you want to eat. Trekkers find that around $20 (for lunch & dinner) a day is reasonable for the trekking days. You may have to pay for Wi-Fi, electricity and hot showers too (up in the mountains during the trek). Hence allocating the allowance for each day accordingly would suffice.
- Daypack (rucksack)
- Backpack (a porter will carry it) Recommended size: about 50-litre capacity (10-12 KGS per person) if you are travelling with a friend you can share one pack between the two of you.
- Well-worn hiking boots or shoes
- A pair of sandals
- Sleeping Bag (HSJ will provide if you do not have your own)
- A one-litre hard water bottle to be filled up along the trekking trail
- Warm jacket Light-weight cotton clothing
- Waterproof jacket (a fold -away windcheater is fine)
- Light sweater
- Bath towel
- Sun hat
- Sun cream
- Knee supports (optional for the downhill portions of the trek)
- Trekking pole
- Water purification (Himalayan Social Journey will provide
- water purification tablet)
- Small First-aid-kit (Himalayan Social Journey will also provide one)
- Headlamp (preferable) or Flashlight (torch)
- Loose stomach and nausea medicine
- Toiletries for the trek (toilet paper, soap, Towel shampoo etc...)
If you have purchased a voucher from any deal company, please come in contact with us with the voucher code (redemption code) so that the voucher can be redeemed on time. Since we need time to purchase your domestic air ticket and make other arrangements, kindly confirm your spot with your suitable date at-least 2 months prior to the commencement of the tour. Your booking on a particular tour date is subject to availability of spots. You can redeem you voucher through this link too : https://hsj.com.np/voucher-redemption
If you plan to arrive early or depart late please make sure you make extra hotel arrangements by contacting [email protected] And if you'll be spending extra time in Nepal please let us know. We will book your extra night accommodation at same trip hotels, Hotel Holy Himalaya , Himalayan Suite Hotel, Hotel Mulberry, Aloft Hotel, and Gokarna Forest Resort for your convenience.
If you would like to book extra activities such as Paragliding (100pp), Bungy jump (70pp), Mountain flight (USD 180pp), Heli Tour (USD 800pp –based on 5pax) Bhaktapur Sightseeing many more programs. You can book by contacting us at [email protected] For longer excursions such as Bhutan, Tibet, India, and any other treks also, we can help but please contact us immediately at [email protected]
For the trek, we'll have one porter for two people as per group size. The porter will carry 12-15 kg per person luggage during the trek. You need to carry your day pack to keep your personal belongings such as wallet, camera, water bottle, dry snack, headlight, gadgets, etc. The safety and concerns of our porters is our collective responsibility. We take our responsibilities towards them and their safety concerns strictly. On your part, please carry only things that are of absolute necessities.
A general rule of thumb for tipping is USD 50-60 for guide and porter if you are fully satisfied with their service. So we suggest you allocate a minimum of USD 50 for tipping. This is just a guideline and you may tip whatever /how much you think is appropriate for the services rendered which made your trek a memorable one.
If you are considering to donate, School supplies (pens, notebooks, coloured pencils, etc...). These gifts can be directly turned over to our company when you arrive in Kathmandu. And we will manage them to distribute through our proper channels.
As for your the need of much of your trekking clothes and tour supplies and gears, they can be easily purchased in Kathmandu near our hotel at good prices. Bring hiking boots/shoes from your country. The Nepali ones are not recommended. Your guide will assist you to get anything you may need here.
We are committed to providing the best services which will give you a once in a lifetime journey. We perform our duties honestly & seriously to make your journey very smooth & pleasant. However, the entire programs in Nepal are conducted strictly under the rules and regulation of their policies. So in this case, we will give options to choose a different itinerary for an enjoyable holiday. If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact us.
The sleeping bags we provide are of good quality. They help you sustain the colder climate in Nepali mountains up to -25 degree Celsius of temperature. However if you need the one of your own, you can buy one here. Your guide shall assist you to get it here. Keep the track of the weather forecast of the area and pack your clothes accordingly. This would help you be prepared for the type of weather Nepali Mountains are accustomed to.
The size of the duffel bag that we provide is 60-70 liter.
Yes, you will have free access to the power in the city areas however with your ascends to the mountain and as you climb to higher altitudes, extra charge would be applicable for the use of power supply or wireless internet connections.