Markha Valley Trek – Trek No 14

Print Trip Details

Trip Overview

Markha Valley Trek

The Markha Valley Trek is a spectacular and popular trekking route located in the Ladakh region of the Indian Himalayas. Known for its stunning landscapes, diverse flora and fauna, and immersion in the local Ladakhi culture, this trek offers an unforgettable adventure for outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers. Starting from the charming village of Chilling, the trek winds its way through picturesque landscapes of barren mountains, lush green valleys, and traditional Ladakhi villages. Trekkers are treated to breathtaking views of the Stok Kangri and Kang Yatse peaks, among other stunning vistas. The trek typically spans around 8 to 10 days, covering a distance of approximately 75 to 80 miles (120 to 130 kilometers). The trail takes you through diverse terrains, from narrow canyons and rocky gorges to vast meadows and high-altitude plateaus. Along the way, you'll cross the Markha River multiple times and encounter several quaint villages like Skiu, Markha, and Hankar, where you can interact with the warm and hospitable local villagers.

Immersive Adventure: Monasteries, Wildlife, and Altitude on the Markha Valley Trek

One of the highlights of the Markha Valley Trek is the opportunity to visit ancient monasteries such as Hemis, Thiksey, and Stok, offering a glimpse into the region's rich Buddhist heritage and culture. The trek also takes you through Hemis National Park, home to a variety of wildlife including ibex, marmots, and elusive snow leopards, adding an element of excitement to the journey. Accommodation during the trek typically involves staying in traditional Ladakhi homestays, tents, or basic lodges, providing a chance to experience the local lifestyle and hospitality. The cold desert climate demands appropriate gear and clothing, as temperatures can fluctuate dramatically, especially at higher altitudes. Altitude acclimatization is crucial during this trek due to the high elevations encountered, with the highest point being the Kongmaru La pass at approximately 17,060 feet (5,200 meters). It's important to pace yourself and allow your body time to acclimate to the reduced oxygen levels.

Conclusion and Summary

Overall, the Markha Valley Trek offers a remarkable adventure that combines the beauty of the Himalayas, the cultural richness of Ladakh, and the thrill of trekking through challenging terrains, making it a bucket-list-worthy experience for any avid trekker.

Trip Highlights

  • Scenic Flight from Delhi to Leh to Delhi.
  • Visit one of the Highest Airport of the World: Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport of Leh, India.
  • Cross through Bridges, Valleys, Rivers, Streams, Meadows and Mountains during the Trek
  • Traverse passes fluttering with Chorten and prayer flags that reflect the deep Buddhist heritage
  • Experience indigenous culture of the Indo-Tibetans dwelling in the remote villages tucked at the lofty and steep ridges.
  • Visit Hemis Monastery: The Largest Monasteries of Ladakh.
  • Visit Hemis National Park that houses some of the rare species of Himalayan wildlife like the Snow leopard, lynx, Ladakhi Urial (a type of goat), Arghali (great Tibetan sheep), Blue sheep, Red fox, Tibetan wolf, Dhole (wild dog), Marmot.
  • Beautiful View of Kang Yatze mountain from Nimaling and Hankar.
  • Explore Leh, the ancient Ladakhi capital, the Indus Valley and its Buddhist monasteries
  • Comprehensive acclimatization programme
  • Explore trails linking whitewashed settlements and tiny monasteries to the vast pastures of Rupshu
  • Head off the beaten track to the Zalung Karpo La and remote Tibetan borderlands
  • Traverse passes fluttering with prayer flags that reflect the deep Buddhist heritage
  • Visit ancient monasteries and forts in the upper Indus Valley
  • Enjoy a fully supported trek staying in beautifully situated campsites
  • Experience traditional hospitality in our hotel in Leh


Day 01 Arrival Leh

Upon arrival Leh airport, pick-up and transfer to hotel. After tea/coffee rest in hotel to get acclimatization. Evening walking walking tour in Leh bazaar. Overnight at hotel.

Day 02- Leh/Spituk/Zingchen 5 hours

After the breakfast drive to Spituk Bridge behind the Spituk monastery, around 7 kms from Leh town. From Spituk bridge starts the trekking along Indus River walking through flat and desolate plane at the foot of the Stok Mountain. Gradually, you will leave the view of busy Leh-Srinagar highway and move towards wilderness of Himalaya.  Soon you arrive at Zingchen through a gorge, which gives you a feeling of complete isolation. Stay overnight in Camp at Zingchen.

Day 03- Zingchen to Yurutse 4 to 5 hours

Leave Zingchen for Rumbak through a straight forward road; leaving village, you enter Hemis national park for the preservation of Snow leopard, Baharal, marmot, wolf etc. Walk through a narrow trail and valley widens as you arrive Rumbak and camp at Yurutse below Gandala Pass. Overnight in Camp.

Day 04- Yurutse to Skyu 6-7 hours

From Yurutse follow the path along the mountain side, then cross a small valley and follow zig zag steep path. There after cross Gandala pass (4380m). Then walk the long descent towards Shingo for 2 hrs that will lead to the valley of Markha and after few hundred meters you reach Skyu. Overnight halt in tents.

Day 05- Sku to Markha 7-8 hours

From Skyu, follow a good path on the right bank of Markha where one can find great vegetation. Then cross the right bank of river then the barren plain and arrive at Chaluk. Thereafter, walk along the left bank of river and after another crossing climb towards Markha village. Towards the end of the village there are good camp site near the river. Overnight stay in tents.

Day 06- Markha to Thachungtse 5-6 hours

Right after breakfast you start trekking in the morning to reach Tchatchutse via Hankar village.  Overnight in tents.

Day 07- Thachungtse to Nimaling 4-5 hours

After breakfast start trekking to reach Nimaling. Nimaling (4900 M) has a sweeping pasture where thousands of sheep, goats and yaks graze during the summer months. Rising to the south is 6400 M high Kang Yatse (Nimaling Peak), a lovely mountain, but not an easy one to climb. Overnight in tents.

Day 08- Nimaling to Shang Sumdo 6-7 hours

After breakfast start trekking to reach Kongmaru La (5100 M). The trek to Kongmaru

la passes through narrow gorges. From the top of the pass, you can have a view of Ladakh ranges and the sight of villages to the north of Indus valley is excellent. Cross the pass and proceed to Shang. Overnight in tents.

Day 09- Shang Sumdo to Hemis to Leh 6 hours

Walk along the stream down to Hemis monastery, which is one of the oldest and richest monasteries in Ladakh.Visit Hemis monastery and drive to Leh, enroute visit Thiksey Monastery, Shey Palace and Stok Palace cum museum.

Day 10 Departure

Early morning on time departure transfer to Leh airport to catch flight to Delhi. Tour Ends

Price Includes

  • 14 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 13 dinners
  • airport transfers on Day 1 & Day 15
  • expert bilingual guide
  • group medical kit
  • good quality accommodation in Delhi & Leh
  • the use of a friendship world trek pack which includes a quality sleeping bag, down or fibre fill jacket and insulated mat (valued at over US$500)
  • private transportation
  • all park entrances & permits
  • mules to carry all personal and group baggage
  • souvenir Friendship World kit bag

Price Excludes

  • Lunch & dinner in Delhi
  • Aerated and alcoholic drinks on trek
  • Items of a personal nature such as phone calls, laundry etc
  • Tips
  • Airport & departure taxes
  • Visa
  • Travel insurance
  • International flights
  • Flights Delhi/Leh/Delhi
Print Trip Details