The beautiful and mesmerizing beauty of the valley of serene winds and uttering coldness, the picturesque charm of the enthralling and white snow blowing clouds, the enchanting peace and utter silence of the charming and dazzling valley describes the cold land of Spiti, a bewitching town in the marvelous beauty of the state of Himachal Pradesh. The grand and peaceful town of Spiti Valley is known to be a very cold yet alluring desert mountain lying high in the sky pointing ranges of the Himalayan Mountains; the highest and the admirable peak in the world. The beauty and magnificence of the Spiti Valley is heightened with the two elements mingling with it. One of them is the beauteousness of the classy state of Himachal Pradesh and the other element is the grandeur and the elegancy of the Himalayan ranges. The word Spiti refers to a very classy meaning famously called as the “Land between Tibet and India” or “The Middle Land”.
The exquisite and enticing beauty of the nearby regions comprises of the Tibet Autonomous Region and the other part is the Ladakh region of India. The Spiti valley is known to be the least populated regions of the country and so the divineness of the valley pertains to more of nature and less of modernization. The valley is also known to be a gate away to the northeastern reaches of the country.
The valley is surrounded and encompassed by grand and magnificent mountain ranges all of which are around 20,000 feet above the sea level. The town of Spiti lies in very close proximity to the town of Lahaul and the only way connecting these tow paradises is a road which is frequently cut off in the winters due to heavy snow and in spring also. The town mostly experiences a cold and chilly weather all through the year. The town is mostly disconnected due to heavy snow falls and icing conditions accompanied by heavy storms.
If you want to experience the bliss of nature and marvels that it has created, then Spiti is where you should travel for sure. You could see the narrow thin trimming lake streams flowing across the brown and mighty plateaus while thick mountain ranges standing erect as the illustration of the how magnificent and grand nature has. The cool breeze flowing across your body, pinching and piercing you from within along with the panoramic view of the white fluffy clouds meeting the peak trained mountains and the thin lakes gushing across the mountains is what you will be offered while you frolic across the valleys.
Spiti is a town of embellishment with perfect landscapes for panoramic and divine views. It is place where avid traveler love to explore when they are bored of the hustle and bustle in their life , the chaos and confusion has put their minds in un restful situations and when you need to spend some quality time with yourself. it is a place that can offer you all the destination thrills for different kind of travelers satisfying the souls of religious buffs, adventure fanatics and nature lovers and admirers.
History Of Spiti
The ravishing and extravagant history of the middle land or the land of mountains has a lot of decorated pages and flourishing content. It has been known to be exist in the most unfurling state and has always been capable of escaping the eyes of invaders and attackers due to the difficult terrain and majority of the are being under the plateaus. Like the other north eastern cities, the valley was mainly influenced by the Indian missionary Guru Padamsambhava that led to the flourishing of Buddhism in the valley of Spiti. The major kingdom that ruled the Spiti valley comprised of the vast Guge kingdom of the western Tibet. However, after Guru Padamsambhava left the town, Buddhism peakednot only according to the religious aspect but for the cultural aspects as well. After that, the very famous translator, Ringchen Zangpo is known to have founded the mesmerizing valley of Spiti along with many other series of centers of Buddhist learning. He is also accredited to have founded the very prestigious and alluring Buddhist monasteries of North India called as the Tabo Buddhist monastery.
The valley suffered to some major invasions during their historical amplification days. One such invasion was dates back to the 18th century when the mighty kings of Ladakh were defeated by the Mongol Tibetan armies which then led to the division of the region into many surrounding and equally administering powers. One such division comprised of the lower Lahaul was given to the kings of Chamba, the upper Lahaul came under the swaying powers of the kings of Kullu and the valley of Spiti fell under the region of the geographically most beautiful city of Ladakh.
The most exquisite and elaborative history is of the year of 1847 when the land of Spiti and Ladakh came under the reigning power of the Dogra Rajas of Kashmir and the other regions of Kullu and Lahaul came under the British power and administration as the subdivision of the kingdom of Kangra. Spiti came under the British administration after two years in 1849. The valley of Spiti is known as the Middle Land due to its strong connections with Tibet and after some years Chinese population inhabited the region in 1949. The Spiti valley now exists from the money obtained from tourism and hydroelectricity.
Culture Of Spiti
The exquisite and intricate culture of the city is not only both bewitching and marvelous but it is a much greater delight for the travelers who are there to experience that kind of extravaganza. The life it offers is splendid and marvelous with its own grandeur and extravaganza decorating the city like diamonds on the crown. The city holds a rich effervescence of the Tibetan culture being portrayed in every element the city possesses owing to being the refugee for the Tibetans and their guru. It is known as the valley for research and cultural center for activities for Buddhist reconstruction. One of the most religious and spiritual abodes of the world are the Key Monastery and Tabo Monastery. They are known to be the most important monasteries and are also one of the oldest ones in the country. These two monasteries are one of the favorite monasteries of the spiritual leader Dalai Lama as well. The monasteries have also served as major shooting locations for many scenery and cinematography scenes of many films of the Bollywood industry. The monastery has also been a major shoot location for a biographic adventure tale like the one pertaining to the Buddhism’s most famous Tibetan saints and leaders. There have been many monks who have been featured in this film. Not only this but the most beautiful part of the valley called as the Pin Valley of Spiti is known to be home to a number of surviving Buchen Lamas of the Nyingmapa sect of Buddhism. The area witnesses the nomadic kind of lifestyle and so the agriculture that exists in this place mainly includes semi nomadic sheeps and goat herders who generally travel to this place in order to graze their animals. They generally enter through the valley during the early start of the summers just when the snow melts and leave just a few days before the first snow fall of the region.
What you will like
- Shopping thrills including Tibetan handicrafts and other memoirs and souvenirs
- Magnificent encounters with the marvelous and panoramic snow crested mountains
- Thrills depicting the ancient Tibetan culture and heritage
- Plethora of tourist destinations and sightseeings
- Rejuvenating and calming temples
- Effervescence of nature
- Fading city lights and busy roads
- An escape into the tranquility of silence and numbness
- Thrilling and adrenaline rushing adventure sports
- Picturesque scenic views
- Ideal to be explored at any given point of the year
- Calm and composed aura and vibes of serenity and peace
What you might not like
- Their no direct connectivity to reach the city. Hence many short distance trails have to be followed to relish your exploration.
- The city has no railway station of its own and the nearest domestic airport is around 3 hours drive away. If you’re boarding an international flight then, you need to drop your bags at the Chandigarh Airport in Chandigarh.
- The road connectivity of the city is also a bit of a problem and you might want to trek at a number of destinations and hotspots.
- Nature fanatics and admirers
- People who want to escape their busy schedule and hectic lifestyle in order to relish their souls in the lap of nature
- Couples who want to spent some time with each other than the world
- travelers who want to live up with themselves with some pleasant and soothing holiday experience
- People who want to learn and explore the Tibetan culture
Local Food Of Spiti
When the weather around is so chilly that you’re spine finds it difficult to stay erect, you need something to actually warm your souls. The weather at Spiti is very cold and the region generally experiences low drooping temperatures all round the year. However, since the valley has landscapes without any streets or well or well constructed roads so the idea of street food does not exist in Spiti. There are a number of dhabas or local eateries that are available and that offer you all the delights of the noodle soup of Thenthuck, the dumpling or Momos, Tibetan noodles and bread, the Asian Boy Choy Soup and the noodle soup of Thupka. The eateries are very warmed from inside with waterproof sheets and the dhabas are mostly filled with a hazy and smoky surroundings. You can also find eateries serving jam sandwiches, boiled eggs, cold parathas and spicy hot aloo gravy. You can also find varieties of momos that will surely give you a feeling of rejoice and will stimulate your taste buds as well. Other than this, while you go for exploring the realms of the valley you can find a number od stores that will serve you with tea, coffee, maggi, potato chips and biscuits.
Best Time To Visit The Region
The beautiful landscapes, the trimming narrow streams escaping the melts of the mountains, the steep plateaus and the cool breeze blowing across is what is going to lure you into visiting the valley almost immediately. Depending on the type of traveler you are, the visit can be planned accordingly. The very common misconception is that the valley is not accessible during winters however; the charming dazzle can be travelled through road throughout the year. A lot depends on the route that you are taking, your mode of travel and your budget. Although the valley is both mesmerizing and bewitching during all times of the year but the most preferable or the time is to visit the natural beauty during the months of October to December.
How To Reach
The nearest domestic airport to Spiti Valley is the Bhuntar Airport in Bhuntar near Kullu which is onl around 245 kms away from the valley. However, this airport is a very small one with very limited operations and so the nearest international airport is the Chandigarh Airport located at a distance of 552 kms from the Spiti Valley. The nearest railway station to the Spiti Valley is the Chandigarh Railway Station located at a distance of 267 kms. If you’re thinking of reaching the valley by road you can either reach by private bus by hiring one or you can ply on the roadways buses from New Delhi, Shimla and Kullu as well.
Festivals And Fairs Of Spiti
India is a country of extravaganza in all aspects of religion, culture, heritage and history. The thrill and gust amongst the people of this country know how to celebrate everyday of their lives in the most auspicious and colorful way. The vibes that this place has is all because of the rich history that the country has witnessed; one of the most exquisite ones in the entire world. Although the valley of Spiti is however very remote but the way people celebrate their lives over here is am ust experience for every traveler. The city has a number of festivals and fairs that include elements of singing, dancing, eating and drinking amongst your loved ones. The biggest festivals is of the Ladarcha Fair celebrated in the month of July, the prominent thrill of the Pauri Fair celebrated in the month of august, the tribal fair that invites artists and cultural troops of various cities of the country coinciding with the Independence Day, the Gothsi or Gochi Festival a celebration of life amongst the members of the Bhaga Valley, the religious aspects of the Chakhar Mela celebrated in September, the spiritual vibes of the Gataur Mela followed by the Cham dance, the celebration of the monasteries in form of the Tsheshu Festival, The Kungri festival Lossar Festival celebrated in February and the Khogla or the Halda festival of light are some of the extravagant celebrations of the town.
What Can You Shop At Spiti Valley
The beautiful arcades and landscapes of the Spiti valley are very less known as a tourist destination and so they haven’t been explored to that an extent. For the same reason there isn’t any fresh vibes of modernization and urbanization observed in the city. It still pertains to the same old traditions and lifestyle all of which excite the tourists a lot. The valley is a more of natural beauty rather than being a total paradise for shopaholics. However, the main are of center for the top display of the valley is Kaza. The place is known to be the headquarters for the gorgeous town of Spiti. Kaza is itself a very small town decorated within the reaches with beautiful and exquisite pure wool shawls, carpets and woolen clothes. Other items that you might encounter in this place are the ceramic items and local handmade jewelry both of which are highly preferred amongst the tourists. You can even buy souvenirs for your loved ones and memoirs to be carried back home. The top rated and mostly bought item from this valley is the local tea flavor called as the Spiti tea, a commodity bought very frequently by the travelers. According to the locals it is said that this tea is known to slow down ageing process in humans.
Other Important Information About The Spiti Valley
Religion And Language: The major languages spoken by the population are Tibetan, Hindi and English. Other than this, Pahari and Kangri are important Himachali languages spoken by the indigenous population. Majority of people here are Tibetan Buddhist followers although you might find a small collection of Christians too. The city is known for its tourism hotels, handcrafts and food joints also.
Weather: The city experiences three different seasons mainly summer, winter and monsoons. Although it is advised that you do not visit the city during monsoons as landslides is a common occurrence during that time. The weather throughout the year is very pleasant with clear and breezy summers, chilly winters and humid monsoons.
2-3 Days Itenary Plan To Explore The Spiti Valley
Exploring the natural calmness and beauty in just a matter of 3 days is impossible. A lot depends on the route that you’re taking in order to reach the Spiti Valley. The only way you could complete the tour of Spiti Valley in 3 days is by enrooting via Manali. You can as well accomplish the task but your travel will turn to be a very hectic one giving you tons of memories, thirlls and adventurous experiences.
Day 1: This day you will travel from Manali to Kaza. Take an early head start by taking the road towards Rohtang pass and then descend to the Lahaul Valley. After that you will reach at Gramphoo and when you take a diversion to right from there you will reach the Spiti Valley. The stretch will be beautiful to watch with numerous water stream s and beautiful landscapes. Then descend to the Kunzum Pass and then towards Losar. End you’re night in a hotel and a warm bath.
Day 2: From Kaza head to the Chandratal Lake and spend your night in the wildness of the lake by camping there. There are a number of camp sites available and you can choose any of them. As there are not hotels nearby only option for accommodation is by camping. Do not opt for self camping as there is a ton of wildlife there.
Day 3: Visit all the monasteries and all the temples of the valley along with a hot cup of tea at any one of the stalls. End you’re day under the stars of the night sky and the blues of the lakes. Follow the same route for return.