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Ladakh - India

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Ladakh is in the Indian State of Jammu & Kashmir. It has Northern Pakistan to the North West, China to the North and Tibet to the South East. It's a Tibetan Buddhist state situated at high altitude in the Himalayas.

The capital is Leh and is at an altitude of 3600m or so, landing at the airport there is an experience in itself. The 45 minute flight from Delhi on an Airbus drops down into a valley on its approach to the runway. Just before you land the starboard wing seems to narrowly miss a Buddhist Monastery. More exhilarating than landing at the old Kai Tak and that was pretty terrifying I can tell you.

Once you've got used to the high altitude which can take up to a week, there's so much to see and photograph. There are the monasteries which are beautiful and their Tibetan Buddhist mature means there's more of interest going on than the Thai Buddhist variety you see elsewhere - lots of animal skeletons and the like. The high altitude passes (Khardung La is at 5393m), the high altitude deserts and lakes and of course, the most majestic of mountains.

In the summer months (which only last for about 3 months) you normally get deep blue skies and warm golden sunlight.

I've spent a bit of time in northern India and whilst I like Sikhim on the East, Ladakh is where it's at. Get out there and get to the real extremities of the area as you'll feel like you're in a different world.

Personal favourite: the village of Hunder to the North West of Leh

Ladakh - India Images

Leh Castle - the capital of Ladakh
The mighty slopes of the Himalayas
Tso Kar - a high altitude desert. Tibet is to the right
Tso Moriri - a high altitude lake. Tibet is the other side of the water
The mighty Indus river near its source
A school classroom in Leh

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