Ladakh & Kashmir vacation, India

“Two week guided small group tour within one of India's remotest regions including a couple of nights on a houseboat and relaxed sightseeing and walking tours.”


Delhi | Leh | Spitok | Phyang | Tikse | Hemis | Shey | Nubra Valley | Khardung La Pass | Hundar | Diskit | Alchi | Uletokpo | Sonamarg | Zoji La Pass | Drass Valley | Sindh Valley | Thajiwas Glacier | Srinagar | Gulmarg |

Travel Team

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17 Jul 2021
excluding flights
Click here to enquire about or book the 17 Jul 2021 departure
16 Jul 2022
excluding flights
Click here to enquire about or book the 16 Jul 2022 departure

Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your vacation will help support conservation and local people.

This tour travels through some very remote regions, many of which have barely been touched by the presence of humans, and we strongly believe in maintaining their pristine nature. We strive to ensure that we leave these areas as we find them and our team have been trained in strict no litter policies, meaning that we take all refuse to either be recycled or properly disposed of in nearby towns. When exploring the landscape on foot we make sure that we stick to whatever tracks there may be, and when driving we stick to the roads so as not to degrade the landscape. Much of this region is a high altitude desert which means that even biodegradable material such as orange skins, banana peel etc can take a very long time to degrade; for this reason we are also strict about ensuring that this is properly disposed of – unless it can be fed to nearby goats!

In some areas visited on this trip we take the opportunity to hike through the region’s stunning landscapes. We are careful about sticking to whatever paths there may be, as Ladakh’s environment can be quite fragile.

In conjunction with our local team we work with the guesthouses and hotels to help them to implement best practice in terms of environmental issues, from energy conservation to waste disposal. We also help to educate local guides and drivers about how not to negatively impact upon the areas visited. Western norms with regards to this can be quite different from local concepts, so this can be a challenge but we are keen to play our part in the development of environmentally sensitive tourism within this region.

The Impacts of this Trip

As with many of the trips that we offer, this tour has a strong focus on local culture and different ethnic groups. Where possible we try to ensure that local people benefit from our presence. This trip includes some nights staying in locally run guesthouses, which provide employment for people from the remote communities we travel through, often in areas where little alternative for employment exists. We do this in Padum in Zanskar, an isolated region that is cut off from the rest of India for much of the year, as well as in the Nubra Valley.

The fact that some of these areas are relatively isolated means that it is important to behave appropriately. We do not wish to change the traditions of the people that live here – which can often be a result of mass tourism, as people become more exposed to other ways of life. We operate just one group tour and a small number of private departures here, trying to balance the financial benefits of tourism with avoiding some of its negative effects.

We meet many different ethnic groups on this trip, all with their particular sets of customs. We are careful to ensure that we do not break any local taboos, and travelers are briefed on appropriate behaviour when visiting such groups. This is particularly relevant in the monasteries that we visit – there are strong codes of behaviour here and Buddhist principles are deeply revered, so our travelers are explained how to behave respectfully.

We visit a number of sites and monuments on this tour that do not necessarily receive much funding from other sources; the entrance fees that we include help to maintain the heritage of this country for future generations – not just western travelers but more importantly to local people to whom they have far more cultural and historical significance. We use locally owned suppliers and our partners here are deeply involved with the preservation of the culture and heritage of the country.

Where possible we encourage our travelers to spend their money with local businesses; for this reason we do not include meals where it is feasible to eat outside of the hotels, in order that local restaurants are able to benefit from the presence of tourism, rather than the income being channelled just to the hotel.


2 Reviews of Ladakh & Kashmir vacation, India

5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed on 11 Aug 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

Staying on the houseboat in Shrinagar and using the Shikara boat.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Make sure you get the chance to go round the markets

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes I felt we supported the local ec.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

I would have liked more than three on the trip but accommodation and food
excellent only one hotel didn’t come to standard that was the ThecTrabquil Retreat in Kargil

Reviewed on 04 Aug 2019 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your vacation?

It was all memorable and exciting. Shopping in Leh, the floating market on Dal Lake, the mountain passes, our stay on the houseboat . . . . . all thrilling and wonderful.

2. What tips would you give other travelers booking this vacation?

Just book it! Buy a bottle of gin from Duty Free in Britain to take with you; our house boat stocked the tonic but we were able to improvise elsewhere with Sprite etc. And carry a traditional hand-held fan because it can become rather airless in the monasteries.

3. Did you feel that your vacation benefited local people, reduced environmental impacts or supported conservation?

Yes, we contributed to the local economy through our purchases and tips and we took positive action to support the move to rid the area of plastics and polystyrene.

4. Finally, how would you rate your vacation overall?

Fantastic. This was the second time I have visited Ladakh and my third visit to Kashmir and stay on Dal Lake. And I hope to stay again on Dal Lake in five years time with family and friends to celebrate my 80th birthday. Doesn't that say it all??

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