A short introduction...
This 22-day journey starts in the foothills of the Himalaya in beautiful Kashmir and leads us to the heights of the mountains, the lakes and wide open spaces of Ladakh. It continues via the lower hills of Himachal Pradesh, to Dharamsala, the home of the Dalai Lama, then Bir and Tso Pema, visiting many other Buddhist sites on the way....
This is an inner and outer journey into great depth and beauty!
Provisional programme (to be confirmed):
1. day (18.8): flight (Sunday afternoon or evening). I will suggest flights, so we arrive around the same time
2. day (19.8): arrival New Delhi early morning, late morning or lunchtime flight to Srinagar and transport to house boat on Dal Lake, where we will stay. Four nights in Srinagar (1,585 m).
3. – 5. day (20. – 22.8): Time to rest and for sightseeing in Srinagar: old mosques, Dal Lake, Mughal Gardens, old city. Opportunity to do some shopping of the beautiful artefacts made in Kashmir. Early morning boat ride to floating gardens and market.
6. day (23.8): Morning drive to Sonamarg (2,5 hrs), afternoon trek in the alpine landscape. Night in Sonamarg (2,800m)
7. day (24.8.): Drive via Kargil and Fotula Pass to Lamayuru, one of the oldest Kagyu monasteries in Ladakh. Night in Lamayuru. (6 – 7 hrs drive). Two nights in Lamayuru (3,500m)
8. day (25.8): All day around Lamayuru, meditation and exploration of all the different parts and temples
9. day (26.8): Drive to Alchi (2 hr), an old monastery, famous for its stunningly beautiful wall paintings. Short drive to Leh (2 hrs). Four nights in Leh (3,500m)
10. – 12. day (27. – 29.8): Time for visits of various monasteries, including Thikse for morning ceremony, the Shanti Stupa, Leh palace and old town. Also visits to some organisations that concern themselves with the ecological development of Ladakh
13. day (30.8): Early morning flight to Jammu, drive to Dharamsala, arrival there in afternoon. Three nights in Dharamsala (1,457 m)
14. – 15. day (31.8. – 1.9): Dharamsala: Temple of the Dalai Lama and many places important in this Tibetan Colony. Excursions around the area. Possibly a meeting with the Karmapa, if it can be arranged
16. – 17. day (2. – 3.9): Drive to Bir (3 hrs), two nights there, visiting monasteries. Visit to Tenzin Palmos Nunnery, and interview with her, if she is available. Two nights in Bir (1,525 m)
18. – 19. day (4. – 5.9): Drive to Tso Pema (Rewalsar), a place connected with Guru Rimpoche, Padmasambhava, who introduced Buddhism into Tibet in the 8th century. Meditating in caves where he and Mandarava, one of his foremost female student, meditated. Two nights in Tso Pema (1,360 m)
20. day (6.9.): Drive to Pathankot (about 6-7 hrs). Night Train to Delhi
21. day (7.9.): Rest and local shopping in Delhi. One night in Delhi
22. day (8.9.): Transport to the airport and flight to home country
Please note, because of the current unrest in the Kashmir Valley, the planned itinerary has been adjusted. Please contact us for details.
Cost and practical details ...
The price for this 22-day tour will be £2749/3099€* (or equivalent). Prices include all accommodation (in twin rooms) with full board, all transport in India, including two flights, entrance fees and special visa. The flight to India is not included.
As flights are organised by the participants themselves (but we are happy to help!) it is possible to either arrive earlier or stay on longer We can also assist with the arrangements of hotels and transport for independent onward travel, if desired.
Please get in touch with any question or for the booking form with all additional details.
Continued below ...
The team ...
Jaya has been assisting people on trips to India since 1997. Having practiced Buddhism for over 35 years she can offer explanations for the iconography that we will encounter, as well as introduction to meditation for those who would like to try it out. She will be a bridge for Western participants, and especially help people become more at ease in the different ways of Indian culture and customs.
Feroz is from Kashmir and is very familiar with the land and people. He speaks good English, as well as the local languages, is very friendly and helpful, and his main concern is that all participants have a brilliant trip! He lives in Srinagar and has been organising tours in the Himalayas for many years.
Both tour guides will try and help in all possible practical ways to enable participants to have a wonderful journey.
Cost and practical details continued ...
*The Euro cost is the basic one. The exact amount in other currency might need to be adjusted according to the exchange rate at the time of booking.
Disclaimer: Both guides have many years of experience of travelling in India, the Himalayas, and accompanying groups on their journeys. Our wish is to share our fascination with the beauty of the land, culture and people with our friends, and others who would like assistance on their trip there.
We are not a travel agency and therefore cannot offer the insurance cover that is part of a journey with an agency. We would like to stress that participation on this trip is undertaken entirely at an individual’s personal request and at their own risk. The journey is to be understood like one that is organised by each individual themselves, with our advice and support in matters of route and organisation.
Participants are advised to have medical and travel insurance before travelling to India. In the unlikely event of accident or injury, health or medical issues or misadventure, missed travel connections or delays, accommodation or food/beverage issues, political or any other unforeseen issues, changes to the itinerary might be necessary. We cannot be held accountable for additional costs arising from this. If the participant is unable to take part in a portion of the tour, due to illness or for any other reason, no financial compensation can be made.
We do however want to stress that we joyfully see our task as making the trip for our groups a happy and entirely enriching experience, which will be looked back on as the journey of a lifetime. Security and comfort of all participants are most important to us. All routes and modes of transport, as well as hotels and guesthouses are chosen accordingly. As you can see in the comment section, we have had fabulous feedback from participants so far, who felt well cared for.