Spiti valley is a scantily populated place and lies to the Northeast of Manali. It is an absolute delight for the nature lovers, and an equally engaging place for those who like visiting monasteries, and want to know more about the practices of Buddhism. Spiti is one of the locations that have quirky geographical features.
The weather here is highly unpredictable and the altitude is more than 4000 metres. The valley offers you with panoramic views and can be called a mini- Tibet. Spiti is for the wanderers and the wanderlusts, who would prefer a less flocked location. The valley abides in several worths visiting locations like- Chandratal Lake, Pin Valley, and the Pin Valley national park, Key Monastery, Kunzum Pass, Dhankar monastery, Tao monastery, Dhankar lake, Rohtang pass, etc. While all of these locations are truly wonderful.
There are 5 of them that you just cannot miss at all!
1) Key Monastery
Kye Gompa or Key monastery is a popular Tibetan monastery in the valley of Spiti. Trekkers halt here for closely observing the Tibetan culture that lies securely in the archives and the rich heritage of the monastery. The monastery located at the top of a hill at a height of 4166 metres above sea level, is extremely close to the Spiti River. Established in the 11th century, it is believed to be more than a thousand years old. The key monastery is not only the most magnificent landmark in the valley but it is also the largest monastery in Spiti. It is also a centre for education and training for the lamas. Doubling up as a religious training centre, the Key monastery is quite a charm if one is looking for peace and calm. It is a place where solitude and serenity envelopes the air. This monastery also offers travellers to stay overnight, and a friendly traditional herbal tea when they visit the premises. It attracts a lot of tourists throughout the year.
2) Chandratal Lake
The Chandratal lake site is surely a paradise. The lake is located at an altitude of more than 4000 metres and makes for a stunning sight. Trekkers love to camp in here, around the lake, but around the Chandratal lake camping is prohibited. You will find few suitable campsites at a distance of around 4 Km of lake. The lake gets its name from its shape, which is crescent, hence ‘Chandra Taal’- shaped like the moon. The Chandratal Lake has a rich mythological story attached to it, relating it to the Mahabharata episode. Therefore Hindu devotees also visit the lake. The Chandratal Lake is also an attraction as the water of this lake changes its hue from light reddish to blue to emerald and gets green by the end of the day. Wildflowers and lush greenery surround the lake, making it the perfect campsite. The Himalayas overlooking the Taal, also make the entire scenario mesmerising.
Lying in the lap of one of the most beautiful valleys of the country, Langza is the heart of Spiti. It is a small village with glimpses of the White Mountains, abundant greenery, varying landscapes, all amalgamating at the same place. The Langza village has two sections-the upper Langza called ‘Yongma’, while the lower portion is called ‘Langza Gongma’. The Langza village is extremely cold during the winter months and it is just the perfect place to buy some shawls and hand-knitted woollen scarves. The village has a very small population, with less than 200 people. The locals of Langza village are extremely hospitable and welcoming.
Towards one end of the Spiti valley, lies Losar- a small dainty village. Losar exhibits much influence on the culture of Ladakh. Some people also call it ‘an extension of Ladakh’. The confluence of Peeno and Losar streams is the origin point of this village. The village of Losar is quite calm and one can enjoy silence here. This village is a little unexplored and it houses several breathtaking sites, like waterfalls, ravines, etc. the concept of hotels in Losar is in the form of homestays, which are a great opportunity for a traveller or a tourist, to closely experience the local culture of the place themselves.
5) Kunzum La
Spiti valley trek abides in interesting byways like the Rohtang Pass, the Shipki La, etc. Kunzum pass is known for being one of the highest motorable mountain passes of the country. Kunzum La is placed at an altitude of 4551 metres above the sea level, and it overlooks the Shigri glacier, the Chandrabhaaga Range and Spiti. En route the Kunzum Pass, there is a temple of Goddess Kunzum Devi, who is highly hailed by the locals. There is a tradition of visiting the temple, before proceeding on with the journey, to seek the goddess’ blessings for making one’s journey safe. Like the other high passes, Kunzum La is not crowded a lot, hence a journey through Kunzum La is an enjoyable one. The Kunzum pass is not only an adventurous road but also is equally scenic.