Best season: from June till September
Category: moderate to strenuous
Maximum height gained: 5150m (16896ft)
The Markha River flows in Ladakh and it is a tributary of the Zanskar River. The Markha Valley trek does not disappoint anyone! It is very well known for its easy accessibility and beauty of nature. It is also popular for its diversity and variety of terrain decorated with beautiful rivers, streams and valleys. The highest point is Kongmaru La Pass 5150m (16896ft) descending to the famous Hemis Gompa, a Buddhist monastery. This is one of the most beautiful treks in the world.
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Arrival in Leh
Meet upon arrival in Leh and check into the hotel. Today everybody will be given free time for personal activities. This day is reserved mailnly for relaxation and acclimatization. Overnight stay in Leh.
After breakfast relaxing walks around Leh, see local markets, ancient temples and monasteries. Visit Shey and Thiksey Gompas and Stok Gompa, also enjoy a hike to Leh palce. Use this day for acclimatization and last preparations before long trek. Evening opening dinner ceremony. Overnight stay in hotel.
Leh / Spituk / Zingchan – 3200m (10498 ft)/ 1hr drive to Spituk
Before the trek starts we visit famous Spituk Buddhist Monastery located at the top of the hill, 8 km from Leh. After that the gorge takes us to the confluence of Indus and Zingchan rivers. After crossing the Indus River and follow the Zingchan stream we reach the village. Dinner and overnight stay in tent.
Zingchan / Yurtse – 4000m (13123ft) / 6hrs trekking
The trail continues along the Zingchan stream and enters Hemis National Park boundary. It is a gradual climb to reach Rumbak. From there we continue along the stream to Yurtse. We camp here or at the foothill of Ganda La.
Yurtse / Shingo – 4100m (13451ft) / 5-6hrs trekking
From Yurtse we cross a small valley to reach a mountain pass called Ganda La. From here one can enjoy a beautiful and spectacular view of Stock and Zanskar Himalayan ranges. From the pass the trail takes us to Shingo village, it is a steep downhill and zigzag trek. Dinner and overnight stay in tent.
Shingo / Skiu – 3390m (11122ft) / 4hrstrekking
Today the trail makes its way into a narrow gorge leading towards Skiu, a small village in the Markha River valley.Skiu has a Buddhist monastery (gompa), which was constructed in the 11th century and Rinchen Zangpo laid its foundation. Dinner and overnight stay in tent.
Skiu / Markha – 3815m (12516ft) / 7-8hrs trekking
It is a pleasant trail. During long and moderate walk to a charming Markha village we will cross numerous streams. The place is adorned with green fields, willow trees and a deserted palace. The villagers are very traditional. Dinner and overnight stay in tent.
Markha / Nimaling – 4700m (15419ft) / 7-8hrs trekking
On the right bank of Markha river there is main valley. The trail is difficult at some places because of rocky cliffs. Later the trek starts on a good path with several small inclines and a series of grassy ridges. This is one of the most beautiful high valleys in Ladakh.Making our way through settlements and grazing grounds we can enjoy the stunning view of Kangyatze Peak at 6400m (20997ft). Dinner and overnight stay in tent.
Nimaling / Kongmaru La – 5150m (16896ft) / Sumdo – 3800m (12467ft) / 6-7hrs trekking
Today we will hike north of Markha, climbing to the top of the highest of the three passes Kongmaru La, with its breathtaking views from the top. If weather is clear one can see the Karakoram and Mt K2. The trail descends to the Martselang valley, following the Martseland stream to the village of Sumdo. Dinner and overnight stay in tent.
Sumdo / Hemis / Leh – 3800m (12467ft) / 4 hrs trekking
Today easy descent along the Martselang stream. Trail later becomes broad leading into the Indus Valley and Martselang village where we board the awaiting vehicles. On the way visiting famous Hemis Buddhist monatery and later short drive to Leh. Dinner and overnight stay in hotel in Leh.