We all love watching people enjoying their holidays in offbeat destinations in far corners of the world high in the mountains, in tropical jungles or in the little known places tucked far away from our urban centers. Ladakh & Spiti are two such remote high altitude and offbeat places in the Himalayas. As beautiful as these places are they are also remote and far away from major cities and have very basis facilities as compared to the places which we call our home. So if you are planning to go on a offbeat holiday be ready for some basic things.
You may not get your kind of food at remote locations and logistics play a big part in this. Getting fresh food hundred’s of kms up in the Himalayas is a herculean task and costs a lot, besides cooking at these altitudes mostly above 10000 Feet consumes a lot of fuel which is very precious at such places. Please accept your hosts hospitality and believe us they have gone out of their way to make the best food with their limited resources. Always try local food it is organic and more fresh then organic vegetables that you consume back at home.
It can get cold any time in the mountains, in the higher mountains if you don’t like the weather just wait a few hours it may change and it can get freezingly cold even in the peak of summers. So always be ready for cold weather and carry you woolens with you.
VEHICLE BREAK DOWN
Your vehicle can have a break down – a flat Tyre of engine troubles can happen to even a new car just out of the show room and such problems are more common in the mountains where the sharp rocks can cut your vehicles treys or your vehicle may overheat while on a sharp climb up the mountain, your driver will have to stop for some time in such cases. We recommend you make the best use of such time and explore the surroundings you wont get many chances to see such beautiful places.
If you want hot water for bath you will have to switch on the geyser and wait for some time ( 30 to 40 mins ) depending on how cold the places is, and don’t expect more then one bucket of hot water at a time. After you have used a bucket you will have to wait again for water heat up. Cursing the hotels staff will not help!!! At some places they may not have a geyser so just be patient and ask the staff for hot water they will get it but it will take some time again.
Eat a lot of carbs while on a offbeat holiday – We generally avoid carbs and sugar as its bad for health, but once in the mountain’s eat lots sugar and those aloo ka paranthas with butter. Your body needs all the energy it can get as walking / travelling in the mountain’s consumes as lot of energy. And remember Maggi will not give you energy but its always a good snack.
There is already less O2 in the air, avoid filling up your lings with smoke it will just make you tired.
ALCOHOL DOES NOT HELP
There is a perception that alcohol helps in coping with cold, believe us it does not! Alcohol just lowers you body’s ability to feel the cold and not the cold it self which may cause a false sense of felling better and actually cause more harm. Remember Alcohol always dehydrates your body!!
Drink lots of water – you can easily get dehydrated in the cold weather as we don’t feel the urge to drink water due to the pleasant / cold weather. Consume twice the water that you normally do, this will help in avoiding AMS as well.
Vehicles move at as lower speed in the hills due to narrow zig-zag roads. So always start early if you want to reach your destination on time as it may take you twice the time to cover the same distance in the mountains as compared to the plains. Ans also remember roads in the Mountains can get blocked due to a small land slide / road widening work so always keep some extra time for such un-expected events.
Accommodation in offbeat places is at best basic, neat & clean and hygienic. Do not expect urban luxuries like lifts 24 x 7 hotel water, central heating / cooling, lavish buffets for Breakfast & Dinner etc. The best hotels are comparable to 3* hotels from cities, but their service levels are not at par. However what these places lack in amenities and services they more than make it up with their authentic local experience, closeness to nature, locally sourced organic food, their sustainable way of work and heart warming hospitality.