Hundar Village to Hundar Dok
Altitude: 3560 m (11748 ft)
We start our walk from Hunder village to Hundar Dok, through the beautiful Hunder Gorge, Spending most of the time walking upstream alongside the Hundar stream and passing through Shepherds huts, where the men and women from Hundar village live with their Yaks, cows and sheep. They could be seen collecting milk, cheese, butter, wild vegetables and fuel for the winter.
Walking back to Hundar downstream till Hundar Bridge and monastery, the final descent through a valley of meadows and flower the walk will also have a great view of Saser Kangri Pear (7672 meters). Later visit Hundar monastery belonging to the Gelug-pa sect, set amidst innumerable chortens and has a huge impressive statue of Chamba in the main prayer hall. The gompa was built at the time King Jamgyal Namgyal came here with his wife Gyal Khatun. We also explore the village, which has some beautiful old houses.
Nubra: A Step Away From Paradise
Altitude: 3,144 meters (10,375 ft)
Diskit Village Walk: Self-exploratory or guided village walks or cycling through the village fields bordered with water channels as we make our way to the Yak Breeding Centre and Fishery. These units are vital to Nubra as it ensures a continuous supply of quality animal husbandry, winter after winter. We could then guide your way towards the main village boulevard, along the old mani walls (elongated,almost artfully arranged mounds of stones engraved with Buddhist prayers and mantras) and whitewashed chortens (dome-shaped monuments housing Buddhist relics) to experience the magic of this frontier town.
Diskit School Walk: Head towards the Lamdon Charitable School, which lies in the furlong of our Campsite. This school was established under the auspicious aegis of H.H.Dalai Lama on the 4th November, 1980. This school had a very humble beginning; Rev Lobzang Zotpa, lovingly also referred locally as “gyen lay“ instituted this school with only eight students. Today, Lamdon proudly attests to the fact that over 5,000 students have passed through its portal. Other than just imparting formal education, the school is also very instrumental in social works like cleanliness and sanitation of its immediate and fragile eco zone, preservation of its rich cultural legacies etc. Currently, the school houses over 150 students coming in from various far off places of the Nubra frontier. It’s an incredible experience to meet and understand the untold little stories of these amazing children.
Diskit Monastery Walking Tour: We drive you up towards the Diksit Gompa.Perched high on a hill in the village of Diskit and considered to be the oldest and largest Buddhist monastery in the Nubra Valley, Diskit Monastery belongs to the Gelugpa (Yellow Hat) sect of Tibetan Buddhism. It is a sub-gompa of the Thiksey monastery and has a statue of the Chorinpoche “the crowned Buddha” in the prayer hall, a huge drum and several images of fierce guardian deities. An elevated cupola of the monastery depicts a fresco of the Tashilhunpo Monastery of Tibet. We can even organize a special prayer high up near the towering Maitreya Buddha.
Hundar Sand Dunes: An adventurous ride on the double hump Bactrian camel on the high altitude cold desert to relive the glories of merchants, mercenaries and monks as they trudged these very sands in search of Gold, Glory and God. The sand dunes whisper lost stories of the bygone Great Game played out in these frontier wildernesses. Sip a brew of Darjeeling’s best, as you soak in the splendor of the past.
Option of driving to Chamba House, Hunder. You will be privy to an old heritage home which used to belong to a rich Silk Route era trader. His house walls and ceilings are filled with exotic wall frescos, evident of the Silk Route passing through these very landscapes. Also, do not miss seeing the peculiar statue of the Crying Buddha.
Chamba Camp, Diskit to Diskit Monastery
Altitude: 3590 m (11847 ft)
This morning, after breakfast, visit the main attraction here is Diskit Gonpa, or monastery, perched high above town on a craggy spur. You can drive up here but it’s a joy to walk among the mani walls (elongated, almost artfully arranged mounds of stones engraved with Buddhist prayers and mantras) and whitewashed chortens (dome-shaped monuments housing Buddhist relics).
A little network of paths and lanes weaves among the monks’ quarters and offices to a cluster of ancient prayer halls. If you arrive by dawn you can catch the daily morning prayers - chanting monks, crashing cymbals and deep horns. In another hall stands a famous statue of a protector deity brandishing the apparently mummified head and arm of a medieval Mongol soldier. Admittance to this particular hall is erratic. Footpaths climb up behind the monastery and past a ruined watchtower from which there are superb views of the Shyok Valley.