One of the most beautiful
regions of Ladakh , the Suru Valley forms the mainstay of Kargil district.
Lying nestled along the north-eatern
foothills of the great Himalayan Wall, it extends from Kargil town, first
southward for a length of about 75 Kms Upto the expanse around Panikhar,
thence eastward for another stretch of nearly 65 kms upto the foot of the
Penzila watershed where the Suru valley rises. Its composite population of
about 30,000 -- mainly of Tibeti-Darad descent -- are Muslims who had
converted their Buddhist faith around the middle of the 16th century. The
upper valley reaches of the valley, particularly around the Sankoo bowl, the
Panikhar expense and the higher stretch beyond, present a spectacle of
breathtaking features-majestic mountain ramparts crowned by snow capped
peaks, undulating alpine slopes draining into wild mountin streams of
foaming cascades of pristine water, awesome glaciers descending along the
Himalayan slopes to the river bed in riverine formation, Quaint villages of
adobe houses straggling dry hillocks surrounded by large tracts of lush
crops downward the patches of alpine pastures uphill. The beauty of this
region is further enhanced by the sheer contrast provided by the towering
peaks of Kun (7035 m) and Nun (7135 m) which loom over the skyline in their
How to reach ?
Sankoo, Panikhar and Parachik are connected with
Kargil with regular bus services, in summer even twice a day. A bus ride
from Kargil takes 2 hours to Sankoo, 3 hours to Panikhar and about 4 hours
to Parkachik. Regnum is serviced by the BI-week bus service to Padum, which
increases according to demand. Some trucks plying between Kargil and Padum
also offers a lift in the cabin for the price of a bus seat. Cars and jeeps
taxis can be hired from Kargil for visiting different places in the Suru
Valley, including Rangdum and Penzila.
Where to Stay ?
At Sankoo basic accommodation is available in the Govt. Rest House. A
Tourist Bungalow is also being built here. At Panikhar the Tourist Bungalow
provides 4 furnished rooms while some private hotels also offers
accommodation. At Rangdum the newly built Tourist Complex provides 5
furnished rooms and dormitory accommodation. Tented accommodation operated
by the monastery management provides simple overnight shelter while basic
food is available at the nearby teashop.
Places of Interest (Visit
Leh is nested in a side valley just to the north of the Indus Valley.
Until 1947 it had close trading relations with Central Asia yak trains would
set off from the Leh Bazaar to complete the stages over the Kaakoam Pass to
Yarkand and Kashgar.
Administering the Valleys of Suru , Drass, Wakha and Bodkarbu, Kargil
lies midway between the alpine valleys of Kashmir and the fertile reaches of
the Indus Valley and ladakh
Thak Thok gompa
shelters a cave in which the apostle Padmasambhava is said to have meditated
during his epic eight-century journey to Tibet.
Dhahanu is situated to the south west of Leh,
around 163 Kms. passing through the beautiful villages of Kaltsey, Domkhar,
Padum is 240 km to the south of Kargil, comes as a bit of an anticlimax
Rangdum is an elliptical expanded plateau surrounded by colourful hills on
the one side and glacier encrusted rocky mountains on the other.
Walled in by the Great Himalayan Divide, Zanskar, literally " Land of
White Copper" has for decades exrted the allure of Shangri La on visitours
Zangla is the nodal point on the popular Padum Strongdey Zangla Karsha
Padum round trip, which covers most of the cultural sites of Zanskar.
The Suru Valley
Diving two of the world's most formidable mountain ranges, the Suru
Valley winds south from Kargil to the desolate Pensi La the main entry point
the Nubra valley - nubra means green used to be on the trading route
connection Tibet with Turkistan, Also Now as the Valley of Flowers
Drass (3230 m), 60 km west of Kargil on the road to Srinagar, is a small township lying in the centre of the valley of the same name
The Shyok River receives the waters of the Nubra and Changchenmo rivers. It rises from the Khumdang glacier, which can be approached from
Pangong Tso, 15km to the southeast of Leh, is one of the largest
saltwater lakes in Asia, a long narrow strip of water stretching from Ladakh
east into Tibet.
Tso Moriri or "Mountain Lake" is Famous for the large herds of
king, or wild ass, which graze on its shores, the lake of Tso Moriri.