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How To Reach Zanskar
Tucked away in a distant part of Ladakh, Zanskar Valley is a magical place. Located in the eastern part of Jammu & Kashmir, the valley is blessed with stunning natural beauty. It is truly a wonderland with absolutely gorgeous crystal blue streams, open vistas, massive glaciers and serenity. Zanskar can be reached through Kargil by road and by a trekking route over Shingo La pass to Darcha in Himachal Pradesh.
Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport in Leh is the nearest aerodome to reach Zanskar Valley. It is about 450 km from the valley and can be reached by hiring a cab from the airport. Leh is well connected to some majore neighbouring cities like Srinagar, Delhi etc with both national and private carriers operating regular flights to and from Leh.
Zanskar does not have a railhead. The station closest to Zanskar is Jammu Tawai in Jammu. From here tourists have to take a bus or hire a taxi to reach Srinagar before heading towards Zanskar. From Jammu Tawai it is 730 km to Zanskar Valley. With such a tedious plan for commute, we do not recommend train travel is you want to quickly and easily reach Zanskar.
Zanskar is accessible only by roadways. It is about 230 km and 8 hours drive from Kargil. The first leg of the journey involves reaching Leh. From here tourists need to hire a SUV to reach Kargil which is 213 km from Leh. There is a weekly bus service operateling till Padum from Leh, with a night halt at Kargil. Road is the only way you will be able to reach Zanskar Valley.
As a remote and virtually isolated town, Zanskar is connected to the rest of the country by a treacherous road that also happens to find itself in not a very favourable condition. Hence travelling to Zanskar and moving around the region is tough. For sightseeing, for travelling to Padum, tourists have to rely heavily on taxis. Only taxis with Kargil registration can be hired in Zanskar. Taxis from Leh or Srinagar cannot be used.