12 Best Places to visit in Kaza, Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh
Kaza is located high up in the mountains of Lahaul and Spiti valley in Himachal Pradesh. It offers some spectacular views of snow-clad mountains and crystal clear rivers. The capital of Spiti, Kaza sits on the eroded flood plain of the Spiti River and is the biggest settlement you’ll encounter in this empty spectacular snow peak and a rugged desert like mountains. Kaza lies on the Tibetan Plateau and one gets a feel of Tibet and Ladakh moving around the area. Kaza is a great tourist destionation for offbeat travellers.
Tourist Places to visit in Kaza : –
24 km from Tabo, 800 year old Dhanker Monastery is one of the most significant Tibetan Buddhism monastery in the area. The monastery overlooks the confluence of Pin and Spiti rivers. An hours walk from the monastery takes you to the beautiful Dhankar Lake. The fort was built to keep an eye on enemies and offers unhindered views. About 40 Kms from Kaza, this group of monasteries is easily accessible from the town via cab or Himachal Pradesh Road Transport bus (leaves at 7:00AM). It is top in the list of tourist places to visit in Kaza.
Dhankar Lake (21 kms)
A further trek of one hour from Dhankar Monastery will take you to Dhankar Lake with pristine white water. This location will take you to another level of entrance with its splendiferous surroundings.
Sakya Tangyud Monastery
One of the most sought after attraction in Kaza, this monastery is situated at the height of 4587 m above the sea level. It serves as an amazing place to learn about Buddhism while surrounded by the captivating views of nature. Located at a distance of four kilometres from Kaza, the Tangyud Monastery has the appearance of a fortified castle with slanted mud walls. It is top in the list of tourist places to visit in Kaza.
Situated 7Kms from Kunzum Pass at an altitude of 4300m, Chandra Tal Lake is not to be missed. With spellbinding panoramic views, and crystal clear blue water, this lake never fails to charm its large number of visitors in form of adventure buffs and photographers. It is top tourist attraction near Kaza.
Ki is the biggest monastery in Spiti Valley. Situated between Kaza and Kibber, it dominates the Ki village and the Spiti Valley. Ki Monastery (4116M) is a Gelugpa sect monastery. Its hilltop position points to a post-thirteenth century construction. The monks’ dwellings rise in a closely packed cluster up the south and east face to the summit, where the main temple building is situated. The greatest wealth of Ki Gompa lies in its collection of ‘Thangkas’ salvaged with difficulty from the devastating raids of the Dogras and the Sikhs in the 19th century. At 4270M and 4205M height, Gete and Kibber are the two highest villages in Asia connected by road. No matter what, do not drop this place from your itinerary, even if you are not on a spiritual tour. Almost 7km from Kaza, this Monastery, established in 11th century is the largest in Spiti valley. It is top in the list of tourist places to visit in Kaza.
From Ki, a scenic drive takes you to Kibber, a small village. From Kibber, the pastures are spread over hundred of square kilometers. Kibber is the take off point for the popular trek to Tso Moriri in Ladakh. Kibber also falls on the old route used over centuries by traders from trans-Himalayas to reach Spiti for an annual fair where traders from Spiti, Kinnaur, Ladakh and Tibet use to participate in. The highest village in town or as it is claimed to be, Kibber is situated 18 kms from Kaza. Easily accessible by a smooth road, you will be amazed to known that the village has its own polling station during elections.
Further up, six kilometers from Kibber, we drive up to a still smaller village of Gete. Consisting of just six houses, it boasts of being the highest village in Asia connected by road. The view from here of the whole Spiti valley is truly spectacular. There is also, for the willing and adventurous, a short-cut to Ki monastery that takes less than an hour (hiking).
A short drive ahead is the pretty village of Tashigong. It is now considered sacred earth as the present Dalai Lama stayed here once. He said that Tashigong reminded him of his home. The view of Shilla peak from here is breathtaking. It is a good idea to go to the village and ask for ‘Dahi’- generally made from Yak milk and amazingly tasty. Kaza, Ki, Kibber, Gete and Tashigong are quite close knit and can be comfortably covered in a day. It is top in the list of tourist places to visit in Kaza.
Komic Village, situated at a height of 4275m is a location where fossils are found. Villagers might tempt you to buy the fossils, however do not get trapped since buying and transporting fossils is not legal.
Langza – Hikkim – Comic Trek
Langza-Hikkim-Comic circuit passes thru a virtual treasure trove of fossils, the highest village at 4460m and highest monastery at 4560m respectively. The panorama as viewed from these villages is enthralling and inspiring. The high and mighty peaks can be seen from here in their full glory. The Chocling La Peak (6510 Mts) is visible very clearly like a Shivalingam from these villages.
Kunzum Pass (45 km)
The Kunzum pass is a high mountain pass on the Eastern Kunzum Range of the Himalayas around 122 kilometres from Manali. An entryway to Spiti Valley from Lahaul, Kunzum Pass is situated at an altitude of 4551m. A temple on the top of the pass dedicated to Goddess Kunjum (Durga) is said to guard the pass and ward off the evil. Kunzum La Pass lies at about 15000+ ft asl and it connects Spiti Valley with Lahaul valley eventually connecting Manali – Leh route. Kunzum La Pass opens around 10th June and is one that offers one of the most rugged biking and driving experiences. Road between Gramphu and Kunzumla Pass (50 kms stretch) is actually a no mans land with no habitation, no cellphone signals and road passing through riverbeds and waterstreams. It is top in the list of tourist places to visit in Kaza.
Pin Valley National Park (31 kms away)
Declared a National Park in 1987, Pin Valley is located in the cold desert region of the Spiti valley. The valley is formed by the Pin River which rises on the eastern slopes of Pin-Parvati pass (4800M) and meets the Spiti River near Attargo Point.
With its snow laden unexplored higher reaches and slopes, the Park forms a natural habitat for a number of endangered animals including the Snow Leopard and Siberian Ibex. Spreading south of Dhankar in the Spiti district near the Tibetan border, the Park marks the Lahaul and Spiti divisions of the State. The elevation of the Park ranges from about 3,500M near Ka Dogri to more than 6,000M at its highest point. A paradise for wildlife lovers, Pin Valley is a natural habitat for large number of endangered animals such as Snow Leopard, Woolly Hare, Siberian Ibex and Tibetan Gazelle. It is top tourist attraction in Kaza.
Tabo (33 kms)
Located at a distance of 48 kms from Kaza, this ancient village houses one of the most prominent monastery considered only next to the Tholing Gompa in Tibet in ranking. It is top in the list of tourist places to visit in Kaza.
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