Trekking holiday in Ladakh, The Markha Valley trek

“Stunning views over the mountains and valleys of Ladakh provide the inspiration for a variety of gentle and steep treks in India's High Himalaya.”


Leh (3500m) | acclimatisation walk in Leh Valley | optional jeep drive to the Khardung La | trek Jinchen to Rumbak | Yurutse Village | Ganda La (4970m) | Skyu in the Markha Valley | Markha River (3753m) | Tache Gompa Buddhist Monastery | steeply climb to Nimaling | Gongmaru Pass (5200m) | Hemis Monastery |

Description of Trekking holiday in Ladakh, The Markha Valley trek

Trekking in the Himalayas is often considered the pinnacle of peak to peak hiking holidays with this two week trip within the Indian region of Ladakh certainly enabling travellers to make the most of the mountains and the cultural traditions of the High Himalaya.

As this trekking in the Himalayas holiday leads through the Markha Valley you’ll find yourself flanked by the mountain ranges of Stok, Matho and Zanskar with the meandering twists and turns of the Markha River making for an excellent trekking trail along the river’s banks.

Many small Ladakhi villages and hillside monasteries, including Tache Gompa and Hemis, align the valley slopes and are overlooked by high altitude passes, such as Gongmaru La, where stunning views stretch all the way to Tibet making trekking in the Himalayas a truly magical experience.

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03 Jul 2021
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Responsible tourism

As the pioneers of responsible tourism, we screen every trip so you can travel knowing your holiday will help support conservation and local people.

Few holidays have as little detrimental impact on the environment and local residents as a trekking trip. Erosion on and adjacent to popular paths is a growing problem in certain places and therefore our trip leaders encourage clients to stick to advised routes in order to minimise this. We do believe in leaving no more than footprints, although this tour actively encourages guests to talk to local people, and use local businesses in order to leave behind a positive cultural exchange. Also in visiting cultural sites like Buddhist monasteries, we benfit local communities by making donations, buying souvenirs or paying for entrance.

Water is a really important issue with trekking trips and whilst we must stay hydrated, it is also vital that we have a system for providing clean water without causing lots of waste with plastic bottles. Lack of recycling is already a massive problem in India so we suggest that instead of repeatedly buying bottled water, guests should re-fill a singular bottle. You will be provided with boiled drinking water on trek but it is also advisable to bring purification tablets/liquid such as Biox Aqua to treat water. Burnable rubbish will be burnt on trek and we ask each trekker to keep a rubbish bag for non-burnable rubbish to take back to Delhi.

UK Office:
It all starts at home so we have first worked at reducing our carbon footprint in our UK Offices. Through energy conservation measures and recycling policies, we are proud to be actively reducing the waste produced and our impact on the environment. We support various projects all over the world to try and give something back to the places we visit.

The Impacts of this Trip

Accommodation & Meals:
We spend six nights in simple hotels in Deli and Leh and seven nights in full service camping. All accommodations used are staffed locally, which has a really positive effect on employment and economy in the areas where we stay. By camping for the majority of the trip, we also reduce our energy consumption and carbon footprint for the whole tour. On trek, meals include locally sourced ingredients, like porridge, eggs, bread, pasta, rice and potato with a mixture of Indian and Chinese styles. All groceries and other items used during treks are purchased from local shops and markets in Leh- where clients are encouraged to support local businesses and explore local delicacies on offer.

Our Himalayan Community Support Projects have been helping people in the Markha Valley, Ladakh since the floods in 2006, when we helped people rebuild homes. Since then we have been involved with the local women’s groups and Youth Organisation for the Conservation and Preservation of the Hems National Park in building and running a successful Eco Café. The focus is using only locally made or organic produce and eliminating the plastic bottles littered around the Valley with the use of a UV water filter for trekkers. The Ladakhi women have been trained in needle and flat felting in order to make and sell felt snow leopards, ibex and blue sheep as souvenirs. This has had great economic, social and environmental benefit for the area.

Group Size:
This small group tour has a maximum of 16 participants, meaning that we have a low impact on the environments and communities we visit and are able to ensure that we do not disrupt or lead to the displacement of local people. The small number also allows us to stay in unique, family-run hotels that cannot benefit from coach tours and other mass tourism due to their limited sizes.


1 Reviews of Trekking holiday in Ladakh, The Markha Valley trek

4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed on 16 Oct 2011 by

1. What was the most memorable or exciting part of your holiday?

The extra trek up to the glacier where we had a fab view. Every amazing view of endless mountains. The cultural elements were great too and a brilliant way to acclimatise safely.

2. What tips would you give other travellers booking this holiday?

Listen to your leader and drink plenty of water to avoid altitude sickness. Don't do too much when you first get to Leh in order to acclimatise properly. Enjoy the views!!!

3. Did you feel that your holiday benefited local people, and minimized impacts on the environment?

Local guides were used - we also saw the benefits from the different projects including solar panels and water treatment.

4. Finally, how would you rate your holiday overall?

Very good - enjoyable trek which is not too tough with lovely mountainous views, off the beaten track. Leh is a lovely town to start in and you feel you learn about the culture, particularly Buddhism. Don't expect lots of snow peaked mountains, as these are not the Himalayas, but gorgeous none the less! A great way to trek in the mountains without a load of other tourists!

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