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    stargazing in spiti

    Renowned as ‘Little Tibet’ amongst some, and popular as the ‘cold desert mountain valley’ amongst others, Spiti is undoubtedly a paradise on earth. Be it its many attractions or be it the things to do in Spiti Valley, this beautiful gem in Himachal has surprises for every type of holiday that’s ever been on your mind.

    But, when you’re venturing out on your first, make sure you have these 15 experiences on your list so that your holiday in the valley becomes an incredible affair like none other.

    15 Experiences In Spiti Valley That You Ought To Have

    1. Indulge in river rafting

    Absolutely perfect for adventure seekers, river rafting is one of the top things to do in Spiti Valley. With snowy mountains, hilltop monasteries, and picturesque views around, the Spiti and Pin rivers offer an experience of a lifetime. You can feel the thrill while basking in the serenity amidst the mountains throughout the duration of the sport.

    river rafting in spiti

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    Best place for river rafting: Spiti and Pin rivers
    Level of difficulty: Moderate
    Distance Covered: It covers a distance of 180 kms starting from Tuting to Pasighat

    Tip: To experience the rafting adventure at its best, plan your trip between July to August.

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    2. Admire the flora & fauna in the Pin Valley National Park

    Situated in the higher reaches of the Himalayas, this park is home to endangered flora and fauna such as snow leopards, Siberian ibex, Himalayan snowcocks, Tibetan gazelle, snow partridges, and more. From admiring the beauty of nature to wildlife spotting, there is so much to do there that you would completely lose track of time.

    pin valley national park

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    Suggested Read: Know How You Can Pull Off The Perfect Spiti Valley Road Trip On A Budget

    Location: Kaza, Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh

    Tip: The Pin Valley National Park is a huge attraction, so try and take out a good amount of time for your visit there.

    3. Visit the ancient Buddhist monasteries

    Spiti is a religious and cultural center for Buddhists, and that is another reason that makes it such a famous tourist attraction. With so many Buddhist monasteries set up along the valley, you could visit each or any of them for having a peaceful time. From the architecture of the monasteries to the ancient murals on the inside, every sight would leave you amazed.

    key monastery

    Timings: Most of the monasteries open early in the morning for tourists and close by 5 or 6 in the evening.
    Famous monasteries in Spiti: Key Monastery, Kungri Monastery, Kardang Monastery, and more.

    Tip: Try visiting the monastery in late July, during the annual three-day Chaam festival to witness masked dances, spinning prayer wheels, and ancient rituals.

    4. Enjoy camping at Chandratal

    Formed in a crescent shape, and situated at 4,300 meters in the lap of the Himalayas, this lake is amongst the popular things to see in Spiti Valley. What makes an experience more wow-worthy there is camping by the lake with incredible views around. So, you know where to stay, at least for a night in Spiti.

    camping near chandratal lake

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    Entry Fees: INR 1,500 and above per person depending on the camp retreat you choose
    Location: Middle Himalaya, Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh

    Tip: If you’re planning a camp stay, book it in advance. Also, try and spend a day near the lake to witness its changing colors.

    5. Trek to Dhankar Lake

    If you’re looking for both peace and adventure, trekking to Dhankar Lake is amongst the top things to include in your tour to Spiti Valley. Situated above the Dhankar Monastery on a cliff at 4,270 metres, this lake is a mesmerizing beauty. While the trek is a bit challenging, the heavenly views that you would get to witness upon reaching would absolutely be worth it.

    dhankar lake trek spiti

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    Suggested Read: An 8 Days Spiti Valley Trip Is The Mother Of All Mountain Escapes In India

    Location: Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh

    Tip: Wear sturdy shoes and carry a walking stick to minimize the effort required to trek uphill.

    6. Visit the mummy in the village of Giu

    Giu is a small village situated between the towns of Sumdo and Tabo, and can be reached via a steep 8 km climb on a road that branches from NH-22. It has a shrine with a dead body, which is over 500 years old and visiting this mummy is amongst the famous things to do in Spiti. A popular legend says that the mummy is of a meditating Lama, which makes it an even more mysterious experience.

    mummy in giu village

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    Timings: 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM
    Entry Fees: There is no entry fee for visiting this place.
    Location: Giu village, Spiti, Himachal Pradesh

    Tip: Try and visit the Mummy of Giu during the morning hours to avoid any kind of crowd.

    7. Feel the thrill at the Baralacha Pass

    Apart from the Kunzum Pass, if there is anything more famous yet dangerous, it is trekking or biking across the Baralacha Pass. Renowned as one of the dangerous passes in the world, passing through there is absolutely a delight if you’re brave at heart and an experienced adventure lover. Witnessing the intersection of Pir Panjal, The Great Himalayan, and the Zanskar Ranges is an experience you would love to add in your travel memoir.

    baralacha pass in spiti

    Location: Manali -Leh Highway, Keylong, India

    Tip: Make sure you wear sturdy shoes, and are carrying all kinds of essentials like medicines, energy bars & drinks, and more.

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    8. Stay at Zostel

    While there are a lot of hotels in Spiti, there is nothing that can beat the charm of Zostel. Be it a family trip to the valley, getaway with friends, or a solo trip, Zostel has the perfect accommodation options and experiences that would fit right into every type of a traveler’s budget, and that’s why staying there is something you can’t afford to miss.

    zostel spiti

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    Must Read: 15 Spellbinding Places To Visit In Spiti Valley For A Surreal Holiday

    Entry Fees: INR 599 per person for a dorm stay, INR 999 for two for an outdoor tent, and INR 1,499 for two for a private room
    Location: Leo Village Rd, Kaza, Himachal Pradesh

    Tip: If you’re planning to stay in Zostel, book your stay well in advance as they usually run out of accommodation.

    9. Shop at Kaza’s main market

    Visiting the valley and not shopping is quite equivalent to a sin. And with the market area of Kaza being so popular, shopping in Spiti is something that needs to be on the top of your list. From Tibetian and Buddhist handicrafts to human bone and skull sculptures painted in silver, there are innumerable things you can buy from there as sweet souvenirs to take back home.

    tibetan handicrafts in kaza

    Location: Market Area, Kaza, Himachal Pradesh

    Tip: Try and pick different kinds of handicrafts as souvenirs, and bargain humbly only after knowing the final price.

    10. Experience the joy of star gazing

    With villages situated at an altitude of 10,000 to 15,000 feet above the sea level, stargazing at such a high altitude is one of the best things to do in Spiti. You can just sit and look up to the heaven, and spot a zillion stars right away. And if fortune favors you at that time, you might also spot a shooting star.

    stargazing in spiti

    Best places for stargazing in Spiti: Tabo, Dhankar, Losar, Komik, and Kibber

    Tip: Lie or sit down at a cliff when it’s dark enough to witness a clear star studded sky.

    11. Go for fossil hunting

    While it’s not a popular thing to do, it definitely is a unique experience to have in Spiti. The villages of Langza and Hikkim are wrapped up with fossils so much that it’s impossible to look around and not find one out at all. And if you fail to find any, worry not. The local kids might just come around to sell them as souvenirs to you.

    fossils in spiti

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    Suggested Read: For The Love Of Mountains And Nature: Young, Wild, And Free In Spiti Valley

    Best places for fossil hunting in Spiti: Langza and Hikkim village

    Tip: Look for fossils patiently when you’re in the village as finding one initially might take more than five minutes.

    12. Treat your taste buds

    Be it lunching in a monastery or indulging in local delicacies at a local cafe, Spiti has a lot of surprises in store for its foodie tourists. Spitian bread, dal, rice, and vegetable is like a staple cuisine served across the valley, which is enough to relish the taste admired in the local culture.

    spiti food

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    Best place to eat in Spiti: Key Monastery, The Himalayan Cafe, and Sol Cafe

    Tip: Prefer visiting a monastery for lunch if you have to pick between it and a cafe, as the former would offer a more blissful experience.

    13. Enjoy a yak safari

    The best way to experience Spiti is by living and traveling like a local. So, whenever you’re done with trekking and wish to have another unique experience, opt for a local ride, i.e. a yak safari. Almost, all the village families have at least one yak with them, which makes the ride even more accessible, and an experience worth having in the valley.

    yak safari

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    Suggested Read: Test Your Grit, Take The Spiti Valley Trek

    Tip: Remember to capture your pictures while you’re enjoying the yak safari, as it’s a memory you’d love to cherish later on.

    14. Visit the world’s highest post office

    With the world’s highest post office situated at 4,389 meters between Komik and Langza villages in Hikkim, what to do in Spiti is a question you must never be concerned about. Only an hour or two by car, or an uphill trek away from Kaza, this is a place you must definitely visit.

    post office in hikkim spiti

    Entry Fees:
    There is no entry fee for visiting this place.
    Location: Hikkim, Lahaul and Spiti, Himachal Pradesh

    Tip: Do check for the visiting hours of the post office with the locals before planning your journey to Hikkim.

    15. Interact with the locals

    Being a gorgeously quaint town in Himachal, the valley is home to locals who are a delight to interact with. Their sweet hospitality and heartwarming nature would let you witness the charming side of Spiti, and learn about its lifestyle like never before, making it another must-do on your trip.

    locals in spiti valley

    Suggested Read: Spiti In Winter Is About Spotless Beauty, Survival, and Nature At Its Best

    Tip: Be polite while interacting with the locals, and avoid asking personal questions, even if they get too comfortable with you.

    In Spiti, things to do are endless. But, to have a kick-ass holiday experience, it’s essential that you indulge in the right experiences by customizing your Himachal package as per your interests and budget.

    Frequently Asked Questions About Things To Do In Spiti Valley

    Q. Is Spiti valley dangerous?

    A. Spiti valley is arguably one of the world’s most dangerous roads. It is one of the toughest adventure roads to drive on. There are a lot of sections of the road where there’s gravel, making it difficult to drive. The streets are narrow, pretty steep, and often dangerous. One wrong cut could put your life at risk. 

    Q. What is Spiti valley famous for?

    A. Spiti valley is famous for its natural beauty and cultural heritage. Tabo monastery is one of the most prominent attractions in Spiti. The monasteries in Spiti are renowned for spectacular murals, ancient temples, and several stupas.

    Q. What can you buy in Spiti valley?

    A. There are several things you can buy in Spiti valley, which include socks, sweaters, shawls, roasted barley, cheese, sea buckthorn tea, and barley powder.

    Q. Is Spiti valley open?

    A. Spiti valley opens up in the months of April and May when the snow starts to melt rapidly and the link roads start to open. However, the way from Manali to Kaza via Kunzum Pass opens up in the month of June.

    Q. Can we go to Spiti valley by car?

    A. You can drive to Spiti valley either from Shimla or from Manali. From Manali, it takes roughly 8-9 hours to reach Kaza and from Shimla, it takes roughly 2 days to reach Kaza. 

    Q. Is Rohtang Pass open now?

    A. In winters, Rohtang Pass remains closed but it remains open from June to October for motor vehicles. This pass is your gateway for Lahaul and Spiti trip.

    Q. What is the best time to visit Spiti valley?

    A. The best time to visit Spiti valley is between May to June and from October to November. 

    Q. Which is the last village of Spiti valley?

    A. Losar is the last village of Spiti valley.

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