Tso Moriri, at a distance of around 250 km from Leh is a high altitude mountain lake at a height of around 4500 m, in Ladakh.
But unexpected opportunities is what travel is all about.
Just as we got off the bus at Leh, we met three guys looking for company for a trip to Tso Moriri. Even before we had found a place to stay in Leh, we were sorted for a trip to Tso Moriri.
We set off early morning from Leh. On the way, we saw some characteristically summer scenes of Ladakh.
We wanted to ask her about her design process, but realised she would think we were fools asking such questions.
These skills, passed down generations are their inherent gifts!
There is a small mountain pass enroute Tso Moriri. The pass isn’t really a tough one, but it did break our backs. The roads are actually a gravel path in a very very bad condition.
But the purple mountains! Yes, that’s right, “purple”! They will just blow you away!
This point is also a junction for the routes to Tso Moriri and Pangong Tso. The more popular route from Leh to Pangong Tso is through Chang la. This is an alternate (and lonely) route. Head straight ahead to go to Pangong Tso. Take a right to cross the bridge for Tso Moriri.
This was village Purga on our way to Tso moriri. It was a surreal landscape, devoid of colour.
Yet, there was something hauntingly beautiful about these villages. It could be the romance of an isolated life so evidenced by these surroundings.
Or the constant reminder, that there is just one force that controls life here: nature!
Living in sync with nature is not a choice but the only way, life here is possible.
This emerald coloured lake is Tso Kyogar.
A couple of hours before Tso Moriri, it was a perfect built up to our expectations from Tso Moriri.
Tso Kyogar appeared out of nowhere towards the end of the mountain road from Leh to Tso Moriri.
With the entrée so good, the main course ought to be exceptional. And exceptional it was!
For most part of the drive to Tso Moriri we were negotiating ups and downs through the mountains. Suddenly we hit this vast flatland. It was hard to imagine we were at an elevation of 4500 m.
This plateau gave us enchanting views of this small (strictly relatively) Tso Kyogar.
How did the flags get there? Your guess would be as good as ours!
People working near the out-of-this-world-stunning Tso Moriri lake in Ladakh can not travel to work like you and I.
Buses and trains won’t do for them. Rakes of bulldozers will!
The purple mountains and the Tso Kyogar had given us a glimpse of the magnificence we were about to see.
After making stay arrangements in Korzok, the base village of Tso Moriri, the time had finally arrived. We started (what felt like) the long walk to Tso Moriri.
Our hearts were thumping (with high altitude, yes! but more so) with excitement. It had already sensed some magic.
We knew we were about to witness one of our most special moments ever!
The whites (of the houses) of Korzok, followed by the greens of barley fields leading to the stunning blues of Tso Moriri lake itself, sealed by the browns of the Greater Himalayas is the general colour palette of this landscape!
Tso Moriri is a wetland sanctuary and a protected zone. Vehicles are prohibited beyond the Korzok village.
Due to its long distance of 250 km from Leh, Tso Moriri is not frequented by too many tourists. Which meant, we had the entire Tso Moriri all to ourselves!
But what stunned us most about Tso Moriri was the magical feeling of it’s first glimpse!
In its isolation, unending vastness and sheer raw beauty, we sensed an untouched purity.
Top travel tips for the Tso Moriri Visit :
- Indian tourists do no need a permit to visit Tso Moriri since May 2014 but if you are foreign national then you’ll need it.
- All travellers must carry valid photo ID like PAN card, aadhar card, driving license, passport as proof of nationality.
- Visit Tso Moriri and the interior parts of Ladakh only after you have acclimatised to the high altitude in Leh.
- Dstance from Leh to Tso Moriri is a good 250 km. Do not trust Google Maps when it says time taken will be around 4 hours. Google doesn’t know the roads of the higher Himalayas. DO NOT plan a day trip to Tso Moriri from Leh. In any case, the sunrise and the sunset are the best times of the day to visit Tso Moriri. Don’t visit Tso Moriri to tick it off the list. Experience Tso Moriri.
- You can carry your vehicles only upto the Korzok village. Since the area around Tso Moriri is a wetland sanctuary, you are not allowed to carry your vehicles closer to the lake.
- Planning a trip to Ladakh but not have enough time and information? Try these Ladakh Tour Packages by travel companies.
Map of travel from Leh to Tso Moriri
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