While Ladakh has obviously been a mind-blowing trip, the amazing thing is that it still has not succeeded in wiping away the memories of another place that we visited a year ago. This place is in a way the diametric opposite of Ladakh. While the vast vistas of Ladakh numb the viewer with their majesty and beauty, Munsyari's charms creep up on you almost without you realizing it. Munsyari is a very small town in the northernmost reaches of Uttarakhand. It is practically the last outpost before the Tibet border. Till the fifties, before China decided that Tibet was its property, Munsyari was an important stop-over on a trade route between India and Tibet. Of all things, salt was a highly valued commodity that was traded along this route!
Alpine meadows, gurgling and gushing streams, snow-clad mountain peaks - Munsyari has all this and more. We spent 3 lovely days here exploring the charms of this beautiful location. Thanks to its relative inaccessibility (600+ km from Delhi over a road that seems proud to show off its collection of boulders, streams and mud to motorists, Munsyari is another of those rare places that has not yet been crassly commercialized.
Check out some photographs of Munsyari on my flickr account at http://www.flickr.com/photos/jischang/sets/72157622509319899/.
And to really enjoy the flavour of our trip with some beautiful descriptions of Munsyari as well as the other places we visited, here is a travelogue by my friend Joydeep, with whose family we had made this trip.
Here is Joydeep's write-up on our Ladakh trip.
Squeezing in time in between my official travel to Baroda and Bangalore, I finally managed to process and load a decent number of photos from our Ladakh trip to this site. I do hope that these photographs are able to do justice to the beauty of the Ladakhi landscapes and people, & that visitors to this site like them. I am still recovering from the trip - have never seen such vast landscapes ever before. While we flew down to Leh this time, one of my dreams is to some day to the Manali - Leh drive, reputedly one of the most scenic drives in India. In any case, my appetite for Ladakh has been whetted by this trip, and I hope to visit this beautiful region again sometime.
My friend Joydeep, who has a way with words, has written an evocative travellogue about our trip, & I hope to load that essay on this site sometime soon.
Just got back from a trip to Ladakh. It is an unbelievably beautiful place with wide vistas that one can only dream about. From snowfall at Khardungla Pass (the highest motorable road in the world at 18,380 ft) to the surreally beautiful Pangong Lake, to the high altitude desert at Hunder, each day brought new sigths that never failed to take one's breath away. I'm currently sorting through the thousand plus photographs that I'd taken, & will soon post the photographs here. Next target is to do the Manali-Leh road trip. Some day!