Traveling to lesser known Himalayan villages in Lahaul was quite an enriching experience for me. The pretty landscapes, their way of living, amazing culture and hospitality are the reasons why I fell in love with such splendid Lahauli villages. And I am sure you will too !
Therefore, I have curated a list of 17 lesser known Himalayan villages in Lahaul. I highly insist my fellow travellers to travel to these Lahauli villages to take your travel experience to the next level.
Traveling to Lesser known Himalayan villages in Lahaul
Lahaul valley is home to a plethora of beautiful villages. These villages are less frequented as Lahaul was not always a popular tourist destination. In case, you are traveling to Lahaul for the first time my in-depth guide will help you plan an epic trip to Lahaul
Traveling to lesser known Himalayan villages in Lahaul will really give you a sneak peek into the hard lives of the locals along with some wonderful landscapes.
1. Khwaling (Sissu) – Explore the Verdant Land Of Raja Ghepang
Popularly known as Sissu, it is has been propelled into limelight thanks to the opening of Atal tunnel. When I visited Sissu (before the tunnel opened up), it was still quite less frequented.
|Khwaling is the first major Lahauli village that you’ll encounter if you come via Atal Tunnel. It is around 40 km from Manali by the tunnel.
There is lots you can do in Khwaling. You can hike to the holy Palm Dhara (Sissu Waterfall). You can visit the Raja Ghepang temple in Shashin.
There are a lot of decent homestays, hotels, guesthouses as well in Khwaling. I stayed at woodvilla homestay and I had great time there.
2. Labrang – Experience The Serene Landscapes of Chandra Valley
Labrang is a small Lahauli village, situated just above Khwaling. Famous for its beautiful gompa, it is must visit if you around Khwaling (Sissu).
|You get a beautiful view holy palm Dhara and the high mountains of the Chandra valley. Along with such impeccable landscapes you’ll also get witness the vast fields of potato, cauliflower etc which is a typical trail of a Lahauli village.
You can reach here either by road or by a short hike from Khwaling. It took me around 30 minutes to reach from Khwaling.
3. Shurthang – One Of The Best Lesser Explored Villages in Lahaul
Located above Khwaling (Sissu), Shurthang is yet another tiny Lahauli village which enables you to witness the magnificent visitas of Chandra valley. It only has a handful of houses though.
|There is road reaching right up to the village, but you can hike from Khwaling (Sissu) as well. You just have a hike on a trail for 20-30 minutes, after which the trail will eventually meet the road. In total, it takes around 45 minutes to reach from Khwaling (Sissu).|
There is a homestay named Shurthang homestay in case you wish to stay here. I really wanted to stay here, but already was staying at Khwaling (Sissu).
4. Khoksar – Experience The Mesmerizing Beauty of This Lahauli Village
Khoksar is the first Lahauli village you would encounter, if you were to come from Rohtang La.
|The grand vistas of Chandra valley that you get to witness from Khoksar are just mindblowing. There is A beautiful Gompa in Khoksar which I really wish to visit in the future.
If you are coming from Atal Tunnel, then you have to move towards Rohtang La in order to reach Khoksar. If you were to come from Rohtang La, then Khoksar is the first village you would encounter.
There are a few homestays as well as a rest house in Khoksar.
5. Kardang – The Ancient Capital of Lahaul That Will Transport You Back in Time
Kardang is one of the most important villages of Lahaul. Back in the day Kardang used to be the capital of Lahaul.
|Kardang is also home to one of the biggest gompas of Lahaul which is the Kardang Gompa. You get to witness the beautiful right bank of Bhaga from Kardang.
You can reach here via road from Tandi and it is around 20 km from Kyelang, Public buses do not go to Kardang.
I am not sure about the accommodation options at Kardang. but you can ask the locals in case you want to stay in Kardang.
6. Kyelang – The Administrative Capital of Lahaul and Spiti
Kyelang is the administrative capital of Lahaul and Spiti district as well the biggest and the most popular place village in Lahaul.
|Earlier Kyelang was treated only as a pitstop for Ladakh trip like Jispa and Dartse (Darcha). But thanks to Atal tunnel, people have now realized its beauty and are willing to explore the nearby places.
You can make Kyelang as your base and explore the beautiful monasteries and pretty little villages of Ghar and Tod valley.
There a lot of buses which ply from Manali to Kyelang. Also, there is no dearth of staying options in Kyelang and you can easily find the hotel, guesthouse which fits your needs and budget.
7. Tangti (Tandi) – The Origin Of The Great River Chandrabhaga
Tangti or Tandi is the confluence of the two great Rivers Chandra and River Bhaga. Being one of the lowest points in the valley, it acts as a gateway to Pattan and Ghar valleys of Lahaul.
|The confluence of Chandra and Bhaga is just a sight to behold with exceptional scenery around. Tangti is also a great place to escape overcrowded and overrated places like Kasol which has now become easily accesible thanks to the Atal Tunnel.
All the buses going towards Kyelang or Margul (Udaipur) go via Tandi Bridge. If you wish to stay here, then there are options in the form of tents, guesthouses etc.
8. Gemur – Visit Here For Its Majestic Gompa
Located right on the Leh-Manali highway in Tod valley, it is one of the most beautiful places I have ever visited. The snow-clad mountains really make scenery quite splendid.
|If you are near Kyelang or Jispa, this beautiful village surely deserves a visit. A visit to Gemur Gompa located just above the village is really a must vist along with 6 Celestial monasteries of Lahaul.
Gemur is around 17 km from Kyelang and around 4 km from Jispa. All buses going towards Darcha or even further to Ladakh, do go via Gemur.
There are also a few options to stay in Gemur, in case you wish to spend a night here, away from the crowds of Jispa or Kyelang.
9. Khangsar – Feel The Errie Vibes At This Fort
Khansgar back in day was the principle seat of one of the royal families of Lahaul. It is located around 17 km from Kyelang.
|Khangsar is famous for its 108-room fort which is known as Khangsar Khar (Khar means fort in local language). The village itself is quite pretty with beautiful houses and vast stretches of fields.|
As of now, there are no homestays in Khangsar, but there will be soon as people start visiting the inner regions. You can also visit the villages of Kolong and Kwaring.
Traveling to lesser known himalayan villages in Lahaul like Khangsar really provides you with a sense of Tranquility. And Therefore, Khangsar also makes it to my list of 16 beautiful alternatives to visit instead of Kasol.
10. Jispa – Enjoy the Serene Vistas At The Bank Of River Bhaga
Jispa is one the more famous places in Lahaul as it used to act as a pitstop for going further towards Ladakh. But now with the tunnel making Lahaul valley more accessible people will spend a few days here.
|You can make Jispa as your base and explore the other villages of Tod valley like Gemur, Khangsar, Kwaring, Kolong. You can also visit the monastery in Jispa as well.
The setting of Jispa is absolutely flawless with high mountains around and River Bhaga flowing right next to road.
Jispa is around 23 km from kyelang and all the buses going towards Darcha or Ladakh go via Jispa. There are a lot of hotels, guesthouses, homestays and even campsites in Jispa.
11. Gumrang – One Of Lesser Known Villages of Lahaul
Gumrang is pretty Lahauli village just located above Kyelang near Bokar on the right bank of Bhaga river. It was by accident that I reached here, but I am glad that I really did.
|So, like me, you might also accidently reach here if you were to miss the uphill diversion while hiking to the Bokar Gompa. But it is the best mistake you can make.
In fact, I would recommend to add this village along with Bokar Gompa. As you incredible views of Gushal Goh, Lower parts of Kyelang along with splendid views of famous “Lady of Kyelang” glacier.
This village is pretty small and does not have any homestays or places to stay. You can even reach by road.
12. Dartse (Darcha) – A Perfect Stopover For The Adventures Beyond
Those who have made a trip to Ladakh via Leh-Manali route will know about this beautiful village. But of course, most of the visitors would not know about this pretty Lahauli village.
|It used to be popular a stopover for places like Ladakh and Zanskar, but now with as Lahaul becomes a popular destination people will look forward to visit Dartse exclusively.
Public buses do go to Dartse (Darcha) from Kyelang. You can cover Barlacha La, Dozom Tso (Deepak Tal), Tso Kamtsi (Suraj Tal) and Dartse all in a day trip from Kyelang with ease.
There are also a options to stay here in Dartse (Darcha), in case you wish to stay here.
13. Margul (Udaipur) – The Jewel of Pattan Valley
Margul (Udaipur) is the biggest village located in Pattan valley and also the gateway to Miyar valley (sub-valley of Pattan valley) and Pangi valley (Chamba). It is the second biggest town in Lahaul after Kyelang.
|Margul (Udaipur) is surrounded by beautiful pine forests and snow-clad and is sometimes also referred to as Mini-Manali owing to pine forests due to its lower altitude. You can also visit the famous Markula Mata temple (Mrikula Mata) in Margul (Udaipur).
Frequency of the local buses from Kyelang towards Margul (Udaipur) is not problem at all with all a lot of buses plying throughout the day. The distance from kyelang to Margul (Udaipur) is around 54 km.
There are a lot of hotels, guesthouses, homestays here as well. So, finding a decent place to stay within budget should not be problem.
14. Urgos – Experience the Grandeur of Miyar Valley At This Remote Village
Urgos is an exquisite Lahauli village situated in the less frequented Miyar valley. Villages like Urgos is the reason why I absolutely the raw beauty of Miyar valley.
Urgos is surrounded by huge barren mountains with scenery almost resembling to Ladakh and the characteristic huge vegetable fields of Lahaul.
|To reach Urgos you have to first get to Margul (Udaipur) and then you can take local going to Shukto in Miyar valley to reach Urgos.
There is one bus directly from Kyelang which is at 8.00 AM to Shukto, while the other one is at around 4 in the evening from Margul.
I did not stay in Urgos, but locals informed that they were a few homestays operational in Urgos. In case, you wish to spend a night here,
15. Shukto – A Perfect Place To Seek Some Solitude Amidst The Pretty Vistas
Shukto is the last motorable village in Miyar valley located around km from Margul. There are only 4-5 households in this pretty village.
If you want to seek solitude, then Shukto is the perfect place to be with high mountains and pretty landscapes all around. Visiting offbeat places like Shukto, really led me thinking Are offbeat places in Himachal a myth, and I have a very interesting answer for you.
|To reach here you can avail a direct HRTC bus from Kyelang which starts at 8.00 AM or can take an evening bus from Margul (Udaipur) at around 4 pm.
There are a couple of homestays here as well. I stayed at Tashi homestay in Shukto and had a great time there.
16. Khanjar – The Last Locale Of Beautiful Miyar Valley
Khanjar is the last village of Miyar valley located around . You have to hike for around 15 minutes to reach from where the road ends.
|Khanjar is the starting point of the trek to the high altitude meadows of Thanpattan. Seasoned trekkers can venture further and crossover to Zanskar via the Might Kang La.
To reach Khanjar first you need to get to bridge which is around 1 km from Shukto and buses do go till the bridge. Then you need to cross the bridge and hike for 15 minutes to reach the village.
The vistas you get to witness from here are just otherworldly and I recommend to visit this village and go till Thanpattan if you are in Miyar valley.
17. Tunde – Welcome To The Abode of Avalokiteshwar
More popularly known as Trilokinath or Phakpa, but the name of the actual village is Tunde where the temple is located.
It is equally revered by both Hindus and Budhhists and is one of the most important pilgrimage places in Lahaul valley.
|You can reach here by direct buses from Kyelang which run throughout the day. From Margul (Udaipur), buses ply almost on hourly basis.
There are a lot of guesthouses as well a temple run Dharamshala in case you wish to stay at Tunde.
To conclude, I hope that traveling to lesser known Himalayan villages in Lahaul will provide you with some amazing experiences and memories to cherish for the liftetime Just like I had.
In case of any queries with respect to traveling to lesser known Himalayan villages in Lahaul. Please feel free to reach out in the comments below.