Glamping with The Ultimate Travelling Camp In Ladakh
8 days from £4,200 per person
With a night either side in Delhi, you will venture up to Leh, the capital of Ladakh, a wild and beautiful region set between the Kunlun Mountains and the Himalayas, often referred to as ‘Little Tibet’. Spend five nights sleeping under the luxury of canvas with 5-star service, delicious fusion cuisine and a tailor-made schedule of cultural and sporting activities. Each tent opens out to stunning views of open pastures and willow and poplar trees. Ampersand’s MD and founder, James Jayasundera was one of the first people to stay at The Ultimate Travelling Camp’s Chamba Camp in Thiksey, Ladakh, when it launched in the summer of 2013 (you may view the photo gallery from his trip here). Maggie Nixon, who runs the camp has impeccable taste and incredible tenacity – she is a trusted and long-term friend of Ampersand, so you can rest assured you are in good hands!
On this journey you will unfurl the centuries-old culture of Ladakh, exploring her fascinating monuments and monasteries and taking part in her unique rituals. Enjoy the ancient sport of Polo (brought to Ladakh in the 17th century by the Royals), try your hand at archery set amidst the most dramatic and breathtaking landscape, and raft on the gentle Indus River, stopping for a delicious picnic lunch at a most picturesque spot along the banks.
A land of white deserts to blue lakes, ice-capped mountains and lush valleys, Ladakh is like a dream – it is practically impossible not to feel moved by her landscapes!
This is purely a suggested itinerary, so it can be booked as it is or used as a starting point for creating your own luxury tailor-made holiday. If you'd like to see similar trips, take a look at our Epic Journey and Honeymoon collections; as well as our favourite Active Holiday and Culinary Tour itineraries.
8 days from £4,200 per person
- Day 1 - Trident Gurgaon - Delhi
Met on arrival and transfer to your hotel. Half-day sightseeing tour of New Delhi this afternoon.
- Day 2 - The Ultimate Travelling Camp, Chamba Camp - Ladakh
Morning arrival into Leh and transfer to your residence, Chamba Camp, Thiksey. You will be guests of the Thiksey Monastery. Soak in the serenity of the surroundings as you are accorded the traditional welcome of Ladakh. You will be accompanied to your well appointed luxury tents, where the check-in formalities will be completed by our Guest Relations hostess. There will be no activity on your day of arrival as it is medically mandated that you relax and undergo minimal exertion to enable you to acclimatise to the rarefied oxygen levels at this high-altitude. At your convenience, the Excursion Specialist at Chamba Camp will discuss your planned activities and you can make changes to suit your interests.
- Day 3 - The Ultimate Travelling Camp, Chamba Camp - Thiksey
Enjoy a late breakfast and unwind whilst making yourself at home at the camp. Early risers can take a bird watching sojourn with the camp naturalist, spotting and identifying the Trans-Himalayan birds of the region. Enjoy lunch, followed by a gentle afternoon tour of Leh, 1 hour from camp. Visit the magnificent Leh Palace: built by King Sengge Namgyal in the 17th century, the palace has nine storeys, some of which are in ruins and some display traces of Ladakhi architecture. Continue by foot to the LAMO [Ladakh Arts & Media Organisation] Centre, housed in one of the most important heritage houses, Munshi (Togoche) House at the foot of the Leh Palace, followed by a short presentation by a Ladakhi scholar on the architectural heritage of the old city. Explore the bazaar and end at the Shanti Stupa, perched upon a great vantage point over Leh, with spectacular views of the stone strewn landscape, as you relish a hot cup of traditional Ladakhi butter tea watching the setting sun.
- Day 4 - The Ultimate Travelling Camp, Chamba Camp - Thiksey
After early morning tea and coffee visit the gorgeous Thiksey monastery, 1km from camp. It houses a two storey statue of the Maitreya Buddha seated on a lotus and spectacular views of the valley. Participate in the morning prayer ceremony at sunrise followed by a tour of the beautiful prayer room with many handwritten and painted books as well as the temple dedicated to goddess Tara with her 21 images placed in glass-covered wooden shelves. See small shrines devoted to the guardian divinities including Cham Spring, the protector deity of Thiksey. Return to the camp for a leisurely breakfast. The rest of the morning is free, allowing you time to relax and drink in the pristine natural beauty around you. Or you can take a cycling trip in the vicinity of the Thiksey village and its surroundings, or drive to the Saboo village for a séance session with the Oracle [NB: This optional excursion will be confirmed a day prior subject to the oracle willing to give an audience] This afternoon, explore the jewel in the crown of the Drukpa lineage, the Hemis Monastery, the oldest monastic institution of Ladakh, 1 hr from Thiksey. Built in a secluded valley, the monastery belongs to the Drukpa School or the Dragon Order of Mahayana Buddhism. Explore the many interesting facets of this institution, established under the patronage of King Senge Namygal in the 13th century, where young lamas are taught literature, history, philosophy, yoga and tantra. The monastery halls are adorned with beautiful statues and mural paintings. This evening enjoy a drink as the sun dips under the horizon, casting exquisitely coloured shadows on the snow-capped peaks surrounding the camp.
- Day 5 - The Ultimate Travelling Camp, Chamba Camp - Thiksey
Driving through picturesque landscape along the River Indus, you will embark on an exploration of the monastic treasures of Ladakh. Firstly, the fabled Alchi Monastery, built in the 11th century. Founded by Ringchen Zangpo,the Great Translator, the Alchi Gompa displays a Kashmiri influence in its art and architecture. Within the monastery you will see beautiful Tibetan and Gandhara style murals of Ladakh, frescos and images of the Buddha. On your way back from Alchi, stop by at the Basgo fort, built in the 16th century. Basgo, literally "Bull's Head" in the local language, was the center of power and politics in this region at one point of time and houses a copper-gilt Buddha statue in one of its prayer halls. The ruins of the fort bear the horrific evidence of the invasions of the Mongols. Relish a picnic lunch in a picturesque setting. Alternatively combine your visit to Alchi with our optional rafting excursion. The day begins with a drive through the pastoral countryside, arriving at the put-in point. Take a gentle rafting trip down the Indus River, floating past traditional Ladakhi villages, enjoying the mesmerising views, and the contrast between the greenery of the Nimoo village on one bank and the stark barren landscape of the other. Following a picnic lunch continue to the fabled Alchi Monastery. On your return to the camp, later in the evening, as the sun sets on varied mountain hues amidst the rustic landscape with the Thiksey Monastery standing tall as a monumental back drop, you will be enchanted by a cultural dance performance, Zyabro.
- Day 6 - The Ultimate Travelling Camp, Chamba Camp - Thiksey
This afternoon, you will drive 1 hr to visit the Stok Palace, across the River Indus. Take a walk through the Palace, a beautiful medieval fortress, serving as the residence of the Queen Mother and Prince of Ladakh. A section of this Palace has been converted into a museum which houses some of the most interesting and priceless collections of the Royal family. Admire some of the exquisite Royal perag (headgear) embedded with priceless coral and turquoise. The museum also exhibits Royal costumes, coins, photographs and paintings. Continue onwards to the Stok village. Explore the rustic beauty of the village as you walk down the narrow lanes, catching a glimpse of local village life, culminating at a quaint Ladakhi house, where you can enjoy a nice cup of tea.
- Day 7 - Trident Gurgaon - Delhi
Today you bid farewell to the breathtaking terrain of Ladakh, as you transfer to the Leh airport and board your flight to Delhi. Here you will be met on arrival and transferred to the Trident Gurgaon.
- Day 8 - In transit.
Morning sightseeing in Old Delhi. This evening you will catch your flight home.
- Matthew Nicklin, North India
- Anonymous, India
- Mr David Wallace, North India
- Mr Geoffrey Johnson, India
- Jaime Benitez, South India
- Mr Richard Stoughton, Sri Lanka
- Leslie Siben, India
- Matthew Annable, Rajasthan, India
- Krista Weir, Sri Lanka
- Mr & Mrs Manson, North India