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.
18 Best Things To Do In Spiti Valley
Here is a list of the best things to do in Spiti valley that will enliven your spirits and compel you to stay there forever. Take a look!
- River Rafting
- Pin Valley National Park
- Buddhist Monasteries
- Village Of Giu
- Baralacha Pass
- Kaza’s Main Market
- Star Gazing
- Fossil Hunting
- Treat Your Tastebuds
- Yak Safari
- World’s Highest Post Office
- Interact With The Locals
- Nako Village Walk
- Stay At A Homestay
- Chill By The Spiti River
1. 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.
Best place for river rafting: Spiti and Pin rivers
Level of difficulty: Moderate
Distance Covered: It covers a distance of 180 km starting from Tuting to Pasighat
Cost: INR 500 – 1500
Tip: To experience the rafting adventure at its best, plan your trip between July to August.
2. Pin Valley National Park: Admire The Flora & Fauna
Situated in the higher reaches of the Himalayas, this park is home to endangered flora and fauna such as snow leopards, Siberian ibex, Himalayan snow cocks, 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.
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. Buddhist Monasteries: Pay A Visit
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.
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. 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.
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 meters, 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.
Location: Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh
Cost: INR 1,500
Tip: Wear sturdy shoes and carry a walking stick to minimize the effort required to trek uphill.
6. Village Of Giu: Visit The Mummy
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.
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. Baralacha Pass: Feel The Thrill
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.
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.
Planning your holiday but confused about where to go? These travel stories help you find your best trip ever!
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.
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. Kaza’s Main Market: Shop Your Heart Out
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.
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. 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.
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. 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.
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 Tastebuds
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.
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. 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.
Cost: INR 500
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.
Suggested Read: Test Your Grit, Take The Spiti Valley Trek
14. World’s Highest Post Office: Make A Visit
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.
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.
Tip: Be polite while interacting with the locals, and avoid asking personal questions, even if they get too comfortable with you.
16. Nako Village Walk
Nako is a small hamlet located close to Spiti in Kinnaur district. Being close to Spiti, the village resonates with the environmental features of Spiti including quiet mountains, vast open meadows and a pretty lake by the edge. Surrounded by mountains, the village is like a maze with lanes and by-lanes. This is one of the best things to do in Spiti Valley due to its tranquil sense and soulful sojourn.
What’s Special: The charm of a different world
Tip: Get ready to walk miles as you will want to explore more with every step
17. Stay At A Homestay
One of the simple things to do in Spiti Valley is staying at a homestay. This is the best way to understand and experience the real culture of Spiti. Spend a humble night in the villages of Kibber and Langza.
Cost: INR 500-1000
What’s Special: The rustic experience of the houses
Tip: Don’t be finicky. Homestays are a cheap stay and hence you should try and limit your expectations.
18. Chill By The Spiti River
On your way to Spiti, stop at a place where the road meets the river and do nothing. Just unwind, relax and soak in the beauty of Mother Nature around. The river banks also have plenty of rocks and pebbles that you can throw into the river. It’s a mesmerizing experience making it the top things to do in Spiti Valley.
Tip: Do not litter in the river
Now you must have understood, list of the things to do in Spiti Valley are endless. But, to have a kick-ass holiday experience, it’s essential that you indulge in the right experiences by booking your Himachal package and customizing it as per your interests and budget.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Things To Do In Spiti Valley
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
A. The best time to visit Spiti valley is between May to June and from October to November.
A. Losar is the last village of Spiti valley.
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