So, finally, the plan to Spiti is on! If you are an explorer and adventurer, you have come to the right place. Let’s take you through some of the offbeat places to visit in Lahaul and Spiti.
While a regular Spiti itinerary will take you through places that are visited by tourists, here are some destinations which are not in the usual circuit. Often, first-time travelers miss out on these places due to the lack of awareness. If you want to experience Lahaul and Spiti in their truest form, you need to visit at least one place (if not all) from the list mentioned below.
If your wanderlust soul wants to do something exciting, you can take a 5km trek from Mane Gogma to Lake Sopona. It is a medium-difficulty trek and takes about 3-4 hours to reach. Sopona is a glacial lake that lies en route to the majestic Manirang Paas, which is amongst the highest mountain ranges.
Since it’s a seasonal lake, consider yourself lucky if you can watch the clear waters of the lake and a majestic backdrop. Often, people are disappointed by witnessing a dry lake, so we suggest you visit this spot during the right season. Anyway, the walk to Sopona lake is amazing for both – newbie trekkers and regular ones. Another amazing thing about this place is the presence of Snow Leopards and the Himalayan Wolves. Keep your cameras handy in case they come to say hello to you.
Kanamo is an amalgamation of two words - Ka and Namo, meaning white and hostess respectively. And thus, it is also known as the White Hostess. Located at a height of 5965 meters, above Kibber and Ki Gompa, this is the holiest mountain in Spiti. It is one of the few trekkable peaks which are easy to climb and do not require any mountaineering skills. Once you reach the summit, you will get a 360 degrees panoramic view of Ladakh, Spiti, Kullu, and Kinnaur side peaks. So, are you excited to explore?
You must definitely have heard about the Chandratal Lake, the Lake of the Moon. While this is a magical place, you also need to visit Samudri Tapu, another beauty that lies close to Chandratal. If you want to experience absolute serenity, there can’t be a better place than this. However, it is advised not to venture out alone here. The route is confusing and you need to rappel across the river to reach there. FYI, camping is arranged by camp operators in the area.
Guru Ghantal Gompa:
Situated on a hill above Tupchiling Monastery near Tandi village at the confluence of the Bhaga and Chandra rivers, this gompa is the oldest monastery in Lahaul. It contains wooden idols, ancient murals, and beautiful statues of bodhisattvas. The hike to Guru Ghantal Gompa begins from Tupchiling Gompa, and let’s not forget to mention that it is a really difficult uphill climb of around 3-4 hours. But it’s worth it, trust us!
Lahaul & Spiti Tribal Museum:
This is an interesting place with old photographs of tourist sites in Spiti and Lahaul, a wonderful collection of traditional attires, prayer lamps, instruments, ancient utensils, traditional straw shoes (pula), old dance masks, and contemporary pictures of the local monasteries and landscapes. It’s a huge museum and the stunning collection of artefacts will be a delight to your eyes. This is a must-visit place if you want to experience the culture and traditions of the tribal district of Lahaul and Spiti.
There are so many other places like Tayul Monastery, Mrikula Devi Temple, Lhalung, Demul, and more that can be added to the list of top offbeat places to visit in Lahaul and Spiti. When in Lahaul & Spiti, do not forget to walk up to these places and experience absolute peace and beauty. The place will feel like home to you.
Have you ever visited Spiti? If yes, did you visit any of the places mentioned above? Would you love to revisit this magical place? Let us know in the comments.