How do I get from Delhi to Spiti Valley?
The Spiti Valley is located in Himachal Pradesh in India. The name “Spiti” means “the middle land”, it is the land between Tibet (now China) and India.
Spiti valley is surrounded by Ladakh in the north, China to its east, Kullu valley to its south, and Kinnaur to its southeast side.
It is scattered with beautiful tiny villages and monasteries, and those who visit Spiti Valley are spellbound by its beauty.
The majority of inhabitants of Spiti valley are farmers who grow crops of barley, wheat, and peas during the summer. Spiti Vallet average height is around 12,500 feet
There are two routes to go from Delhi to Spiti Valley :
- Delhi – Manali – Rohtang Pass – Kunzum Pass – Losar – Kaza
- Delhi-Shimla-Rekong Peo-Tabo-Kaza
How do I get from Delhi to Spiti Valley via Manali?
There is no direct bus connectivity to travel from Delhi to Spiti Valley. You have to take a bus from Delhi to Manali and then take local transport to reach from Manali to Spiti Valley. The Delhi to Spiti Valley distance is 726 kilometers, and the expected travel time is 16 hours 30 minutes to cover the stretch by your vehicle. But in reality, because of the hilly terrain, it will take about 30 hours if you take your car and more if you travel by bus.
The Delhi to Spiti valley route via Manali is the most popular route to reach Spiti Valley. But it is not open throughout the year. Though the way from Delhi to Manali is open for all months, the road from Manali to Kaza is not. The route from Manali to Kaza is open only for 5-6 months in summer from June till October. After October, this route is not accessible.
Several ordinary and AC / Volvo buses are available between Delhi ISBT and Manali at regular intervals.
Alternatively, You can also board a bus from Chandigarh ISBT to Manali and reduce your travel time by 5-6 hours. But the frequency of buses from Chandigarh to Manali is less.
Manali to Kaza distance is about 202 km. There are only two ordinary buses that leave from Manali Bus Stand to Kaza at 5.00 a.m. and 5.30 a.m. Himachal Roadways run both these buses, and they take the route of Rohtang Pass, Batal, Kunzum Pass, Losar. They take about 11-12 hours to reach Kaza, depending upon the road conditions.
Some tourists who travel by private taxis detour at Kunzum Pass for a one day trip to Chandratal (The Moon Lake), which is a very scenic lake at an altitude of 14,100 ft.
Several shared jeep/taxi also ply on the Manali to Kaza route. You have to book your seat in advance at the taxi stand. They start early morning from 6 am onwards.
How do I get from Delhi to Spiti Valley via Shimla?
There is no direct bus connectivity to travel from Delhi to Spiti Valley via Shimla. You have to take a bus from Delhi to Shimla and another bus from Shimla to Kaza, which goes via Rekong Peo.
This is an all-weather route open almost throughout the year, but subject to weather and road conditions from Reckong Peo to Kaza.
It is advisable to take an overnight bus from Delhi to Shimla to save on the costs of the night stay. You will get several ordinary and Volvo AC buses from Delhi ISBT at regular intervals which reach Shimla in 9-10 hours
If you reach Shimla early morning, then you can get a connecting bus to Reckong Peo. There are several governments as well as private buses that run between Shimla and Reckong Peo every hour from 5 am onwards from the new bus stand.
The journey from Shimla to Rekong Peo takes around 8 hours to complete with halts for breakfast and lunch.
You need to spend a night at Reckong Peo. Homestays are readily available near the bus stop, and if you prefer hotels, then you will get them near the market, but they are comparatively expensive.
The homestays usually cost INR 400-600 for a room in Rekong Peo.
The bus from Reckong Peo to Kaza departs at 7am in the morning. There is only one ordinary bus running between Reckong Peo and Kaza. It takes around 11-12 hours to reach Kaza depending upon weather, and the road conditions. The bus arrives in Kaza in the evening.
Here are a few popular tourist attractions of this route from Reckong Peo to Kaza:
Nako Village (arrives at noon),
Tabo Village (arrives at 04:00 p.m.)
Note: Do not leave the bus at any of these villages. If you leave the bus, then the next bus will be available only on the next day.
Return journey from Spiti valley to Delhi via Shimla:
There is an ordinary single Bus from Kaza to Reckong Peo, which departs from Kaza at 7.30 a.m. It reaches Reckong Peo at around 5 p.m. You can purchase a direct ticket up to Shimla and catch the connecting 7:00 p.m. bus from Reckong Peo to Shimla. From Shimla, several buses go to Delhi at regular intervals.
What is the Spiti Valley temperature?
The Spiti valley temperature is between 15 degrees Celsius to 25 degrees Celsius in summer. The Spiti Valley temperature during winters can go down up to 10 degrees Celsius during the day and up to -30 c during the night.
During summers, i.e from June till September Spiti Valley weather is pleasant with temperature in Spiti Valley ranging between 15 to 25 degrees. Do make sure you check the weather in Spiti Valley once before heading out.
Spiti receives heavy snowfall during the winter months of December, January, and February. During winter, most of the villages are cut off from the rest of the valley. The best time to visit Spiti is from June to September when the Spiti valley weather is sunny and pleasant. Spiti Valley is also the most accessible from both the routes during these months.
Which Route Should I Take for Spiti Valley from Delhi?
If you are traveling in Summer, then the best route is the
Delhi – Manali – Rohtang Pass – Kunzum Pass – Losar – Kaza
route. Most travelers prefer this route. But, if this route is closed (during winter), then you can go for the
Delhi-Shimla-Rekong Peo-Tabo-Kaza route.
The Delhi-Shimla-Kaza route is longer, but it has the advantage of being open thought the year. It also has gradual ascent, so there is better acclimatization and reduced risk of AMS i.e., altitude sickness. This route is closed if there is heavy snowfall in the Kinuuar region.
Best is to do a complete circuit — arriving at Spiti by one route and departing by another.
ATM at Spiti Valley: Do carry enough cash with you as there are only 2 ATM’s in Spiti. One ATM is in Tabo and the other is in Kaza, but most of the time, they don’t function because of network issues or no electricity.