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Your Himalayan birdwatching tour starts on arrival at Delhi Airport where you will be met by our representative and transferred to your hotel. You can spend the rest of the day relaxing.
Today we head for the airport to board a flight to Leh. The beautiful town of Leh is situated at an altitude of 3,500 meters. It was once the capital of the ancient Himalayan kingdom of Ladakh. The town is dominated by the Leh Palace, whose architecture is similar to that of the Dalai Lama’s former Tibetan residence- Potala Palace.
We spend the day getting acclimatized to the high altitude. Our tour guide will brief us about the tour in the evening.
After breakfast, we set out on a guided tour of Leh. We will visit the Shey Palace, Thiksey Monastery and Hemis Monastery. The tour will give us a glimpse of Tibetan Buddhist culture, which has existed in the region for centuries. In the evening, we shall watch an interesting documentary on Snow Leopard conservation, which has been produced by Snow Leopard Conservancy.
We start out early in the morning and drive to Spituk across the river Indus. We then hike down along the marshes for a birdwatching session and stop for breakfast at Spituk village. This will be followed by a drive of approximately 2 hours to Yangthang village, and a 2 hour hike down to Rizong Monastery. This area has a large population of Urials, which are endemic to Ladakh.
We then head for our camp at Uley Tokpo. Uley Tokpo lies on the Indus river at an altitude of 2,800 meters. This region offers some splendid birdwatching opportunities.
Route: Leh - Spituk - Yangthang Village - Uley Tokpo; Travel time: Approximately 5 hours total
The morning will be spent birdwatching in the area around the camp at Ulley Tokpo and the banks of the Indus. After breakfast, we drive to the Alchi Temples, which date back to the 11th century. We then head back to Leh.
We start out early in the morning, driving for about 5 hours to reach the Tsokar Wetlands, which lie southeast of Leh at an altitude of 4,600 meters.
The Tsokar Basin area is known for its population of Kiang (Tibetan Wild Ass) and is also one of the few breeding grounds of waterfowl such as the Ruddy Shelduck, Bar-headed Geese and the Black Necked Crane. This region also has a healthy population of Tibetan Argali and Great Tibetan Sheep. We might see the Tibetan Wolf as well! The local inhabitants here are known as Changpas. They are a nomadic pastoral community who move from pasture to pasture with their Yaks and Pashmina Goats.
Route: Leh to Tsokar; Travel time: Approximately 5 hours
Today we spend the day at Tsokar, exploring the lakeside area and observing the region's fascinating birdlife.
Today we drive for about 4 hours to the scenic Tsomoriri Lake (4,550 m). This amazing emerald blue lake is home to a variety of wetland birds. The afternoon will be spent exploring the lake and the village of Korzok.
Route: Tsokar to Tsomoriri; Travel time: Approximately 4 hours
We spend one full day birdwatching in the Tsomoriri region. In the evening, we go on a short hike to the pasture above the village.
Category of Hike: Grade A (easy)
We drive for about 7 hours to reach Leh via Mahe Bridge. We will spend the evening exploring Leh Palace and the town's lovely market.
Route: Tsomoriri to Leh; Travel time: Approximately 7 hours
Today we head for the airport early in the morning to catch a flight to Delhi. You will be welcomed by our representative upon arrival at Delhi airport, who will help you get to your hotel.
If there is time, you can spend the final day exploring Delhi before heading for the airport to catch your flight back home. This ends your Indian bird watching holiday.
Please Note: Accommodation providers are subject to change without notice. The accommodations listed in this dossier are our preferred suppliers, but sometimes due to availability issues, we are unable to make use of the properties listed in this dossier. If we cannot use an accommodation provider as listed we will substitute another property of similar standards.
Fitness is vital for this level of activity, as the environment traversed may be remote and challenging. These rugged experiences include long walks, trekking, cycling or rafting in isolated areas through variable weather conditions for up to eight to ten hours a day. These trips are usually 13 to 19 days in duration. Maximum altitude reached will be 4000m and you need to be very fit in order to withstand the weather conditions. Good physical condition is essential and previous hill-walking experience or preparation is advisable.
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