Manali to Leh Bus Guide 2021 - How to Book & Travel
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Manali To Leh Trip

Manali to Leh Bus

Manali to Leh by Bus is an experience, an adventure, and a ride that every traveller needs to embark on at least once in their lifetime. Taking you through the mountains, over the passes, and amidst the walls of snow and towards the other side of the towering Himalayas, these buses are probably a way better experience than taking a private vehicle with you to the moonscapes of Ladakh. 

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Best Deal: Manali To Leh Bike Trip From Delhi (Flat 7% Off).

Not just that you will get to share your journey with countless others who are not necessarily all adventurers. Many of these people will be the locals of either Manali or Leh, commuting from one place to other for a reason that is not travelling and will definitely have a story to share that you may not have heard about before.

These locals and many other adventurers choose to go to Leh from Manali by Bus for a plethora of reasons, one of them definitely has to be the beauty and comfort that you will otherwise miss to experience while on your bike trip or in the car. 

Grab the Best Deal: FLAT ₹5000 off on Leh Srinagar bike trip

This guide will help you in detail with the key points to keep in mind when traveling from Manali to Leh on a bus.
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Bus Route

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Bus Route
The journey for Manali to Leh by bus takes the usual route to get into Leh: the Manali Leh Highway Covering a total distance of about 475 km, the bus takes about 2 days to reach the destination, with the total travel time being somewhere between 18 to 20 hours, depending on traffic and weather conditions. 

The first leg of the journey starts from Manali and takes you to the famous Rohtang Pass. The snowline starts from this pass and it is one of the most scenic places near Manali. Located at about 51 km from Manali bus stop, the Rohtang Pass is one of the two ways that travelers use to get into the rain shadow side of the Himalayas, and the only one in Himachal Pradesh.

This may mean that you will find a lot of traffic and crowd here, making the progress a little slower than expected. Nonetheless, Rohtang Pass is an important point in the journey, and on the other side of the pass is the famous Lahaul and Spiti region of Himachal Pradesh.

The road from here then leads to the small village of Gramphu. Famous for the Gramphu Dhaba, this where the road bifurcates into two, one which leads to Leh, and the other takes you to Kaza in Spiti. A straight stretch of about 45 km from here brings you to another small village in the region, which is a major stop right before the famous Keylong district of Spiti. This small village on the way to Leh does not even have a total of 100 people. At about 10 km from here, there is the famous city of Keylong.

The journey continues as the bus hurtles towards the next for about 23 km, until it arrives in Jispa. A major stop for a lot of travelers going to or coming back from Leh, Jispa has a lot of facilities that one can want. Mostly, the buses will stop here for refreshments and in some cases, night stopovers. This scenic town in Lahaul is located on the banks of Bhaga River.

Moving on from here, the bus drives on the side of Bhaga River for about 10 km to arrive at another village in Lahaul, Darcha, a place described as "a lonely cluster of dry-stone huts and dingy tent camps" in The Rough Guide To India.

As the route turns from hilly to mountainous, you will cross many amazing settlements and High mountain passes as you travel from Darcha to Patseo (13 km), Patseo to Zingzingbar (8 km), Zingzingbar to Baralacha La Pass (22 km), to finally arrive at Sarchu, another major town and stopover on the way.

A place most disputed about its positioning, Sarchu is located on the very border of the 2 states of Jammu and Kashmir and Himachal Pradesh. This beauty of a town is located north of Baralacha La Pass and to the South of the Lachulung La Pass. This is where you will actually be stepping into Ladakh.

Starting from here, the 36 km ride will take you to Nakee La, another high mountain pass nestled at a height of 4,769 m above sea level. On the way to the pass, however, one has to cross the famous 21 Gata Loops. These hairpin bends are a true nightmare of every rider and traveler, and show the true grit of anyone who knows how to drive.

As you sway from one side to the other with the loops, you will finally arrive at the top of Nakee La, from where the ride takes you up further to a height of 5,059 m above sea level. After about 19 km, you will be arriving at Lachunlung La. From here, a drive of about 21 km takes you to the highest transition post in the world in Pang. On a road trip to ladakh, you show your permits here for entry. After Pang, the road climbs further uphill to reach the highest pass on this route, Tanglang La, about 66 km by road.

A ride of 61 km further from here will bring you to Upshi, a famous junction town in Ladakh that stands at the meeting of two famous roads. The right turn from here will lead you on an ancient trading route that takes you to Tibet.

The straight roads from here, however, will take you further into Ladakh, where after about 14 km you will arrive at another junction town called Karu. This is the way that also leads to Chang La, and eventually, to Pangong Tso Lake.

On the last leg of the journey, driving along the Indus River, you will arrive into the great land of Leh. This is where the bus terminates and drops you at the capital of Ladakh, and is the end point of your journey to Leh from Manali by bus.

if you need complete information for Delhi to Leh check out our full guide.
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Duration and Distance

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Duration and Distance
The journey will be spanning over the course of about 2 days owing to the remoteness. The total distance of the road that runs between Manali and Leh is approximately 475 km.

To cover this distance, the drivers ply on for a total of about 18 to 20 hours, depending on the traffic and stoppage at the Rohtang La Pass.

If you were planning a trip to Ladakh then you must check the guide for the best time to visit Ladakh which makes your trip more helpful and provides essential information regarding this.

Here's our full guide on travelling from Srinagar to Leh which will help you on your journey. 
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Best Offers on Ladakh Tour Packages: Enquire Now

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Best Offers on Ladakh Tour Packages: Enquire Now
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Bus Operators and Service Providers for Manali to Leh

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Bus Operators and Service Providers for Manali to Leh
There are two bus operators that primarily provide services for one to go from Manali to Leh by Bus; HRTC (Himachal Road Transport Company) and HPTDC (Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation).

While the HRTC bus goes from Manali to Keylong, and you have to board a different bus from there for Leh, while the latter is a bus that goes from Manali to Leh and has the overnight stay cost at Keylong and meals throughout the journey already added into the ticket fare.
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Approx Fare

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Approx Fare
For the two different buses that take you from Manali to Leh, the fares vary according to the services provided. The HRTC bus is a simple bus that is taken by the locals as well as the visitors, and is actually split in two parts. The bus from Manali to Keylong comes at about INR 150, while that from Keylong to Leh at about INR 500.

On the other hand, the HPTDC bus is a luxury one and has a stopover at Keylong, complete with accommodation and meals included in the package. The ticket fare per person for this bus will be INR 2900.

Explore the scenic beauty of Ladakh with the most awe-inspiring adventurous activities in Ladakh.

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Manali to Leh Boarding and Dropping Points

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Manali to Leh Boarding and Dropping Points
The boarding points for the buses are as follows:
HRTC bus stand Manali
Old manali bridge
Ram bagh chowk manali
Vashisth shiva parking manali

And the dropping points in Leh include:
JKSRTC Bus Stand Leh
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Things to keep in mind while travelling from Manali to Leh

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Things to keep in mind while travelling from Manali to Leh
A few things that one must take care of while traveling from Manali to Leh by bus are as follows:

-Always carry a first aid kit and your own personal medication. There is a high chance that you won’t find both in the remoteness of Ladakh, especially on the bus.

-Keep a torch with extra batteries, and a swiss army knife especially, if you're going for trekking in ladakh

-Keep hydrated as dehydration is the first thing to happen in altitude sickness.

-Carry energy foods like nuts and dry fruits as appetite is usually reduced to the altitude.

-Keep your documents, especially IDs and permits handy and safe as you will be flashing them a lot during the journey.

-Keep a list of important contacts on a paper as mobile batteries die quick in colder environments.

-Carry enough cash as there are not much ATMs in Ladakh, and none at all on the highway.

-When you prepare your first-aid kit, make sure to keep the following items in it: Moov/Iodex, Dettol/ Savlon, Headache Medicine, Dizziness and body pain Medicine, Disprin/Asprin, Band-aids, Medicine to suffice lack of oxygen,  Imodium, Diamox, Stomach ache medicine.

Ladakh is a wonder on Earth and a blessing to nature, its a dream of everyone to visit Ladakh once in a lifetime. 
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Places for Night Stopover

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 Places for Night Stopover
There are not much stopovers during the journey. As you are traveling to Leh from Manali by bus, you will most probably be stopping at Keylong. The HPTDC bus will make your arrangements for overnight sleep at the Hotel Chandrabhaga.

If you are traveling by the HRTC bus, the night accommodation will cost you around INR 1000 per room per night.

Apart from this, other options for staying at Keylong includes the HP PWD Rest House, HP PWD Circuit house, and Nalwa Guest House.

For your comfortable stay, check out these hotels to stay in Leh
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11 July 2019
We went for Manali to srinagar Bike tour. It was the best bike trip of my entire life It all started with the person named Shubham from thrillophilia who helped me in selecting the best trip and processed with my booking, all thanks to him! Without him I wouldn’t have been able to experience the best trip of my life. On arrival there, we met our tour guide Tani and our Mechanic Shashi about whom I have read a lot at thrillophilia reviews. These 2 guys were so supportive during the entire tour that no matter what happened they were always there to look after us. They always made sure we are safe and we are following them and there is no overtaking taking place. Tani, the tour guide, one chilled out person he is! Make sure you get him as your tour guide and Shashi as the mechanic as these guys will always make sure that they are there for you no matter what. And in the end, it’s all the Main man behind everything, Jimmy Sir. Thanks a lot Sir for making me experience the best trip of my life! Without you and your team this wouldn’t have been possible. Thanks for helping us out in every way possible. The roads here are difficult terrain to ride on. You gotta be careful. You gotta carry your gum boots during water logging which is the most difficult to cross. But these guys made sure that we were all safe and had sound health till we reached home. Not even a single person was hurt. Our group was a mixture of all age groups, I’m fact we even got to meet 2 people From the Indian navy as well. One mad kickass experience! Unbelievable. Reaching the worlds highest Pass, Khardungla Top, was the highest achievement of my life till date which happened on this trip! And if at all you wish to go, don’t forget to ask Tani and Shashi as your tour guide and mechanic, and go only through Jimmy Sir as he has the best team! Thanks a lot to everyone out there for which I thought the best way would be to write at thrillophilia reviews.
12 July 2018
From Recent Expedition -: Srinagar > Leh > Manali !! The feeling was awesome and words are not enough to express my experience of the expedition, but ever since I talked about it, it makes me feel that I’m still travelling, I’m still there. I had been a frequent traveller, but the emotions associated with this tour were different. We enjoyed, we had fun, we went emotional, we met some new friends, we felt proud, we captured every possible feelings and emotions we can during the entire journey.
12 July 2018
From Recent Expedition -: Srinagar > Leh > Manali !! The feeling was awesome and words are not enough to express my experience of the expedition, but ever since I talked about it, it makes me feel that I’m still travelling, I’m still there. I had been a frequent traveller, but the emotions associated with this tour were different. We enjoyed, we had fun, we went emotional, we met some new friends, we felt proud, we captured every possible feelings and emotions we can during the entire journey. We passed through all the ranges of the Great Himalayas, starting from the Shivalik, Karakoram & Pir Panjal. The memories of “late night road journey from Jammu to Srinagar risking our life while crossing South Kashmir (Known for Terrorist activities), early morning (4 am) shopping at Awantipora, Dal Lake, Shankracharya Temple, Srinagar Market, Lunch @Lal Chowk, Eid Celebrations, Shalimar Garden, Noon & Kahwa Tea, Sonmarg, War Zone (Kargil, Drass &Batalik), Oldest Gompa Lamayuru, Rafting at World’s highest point (Zanskar river), Pathar Sahib Gurudwara, Leh Palace, gruelling terrain & passes(Zoji La (3528 Mtrs), Namki La (3815 Mtrs), Fotu La (4108 Mtrs),World’s highest Motorable road – Khardungla (5359 Mtrs), Nakee La (4739 Mtrs), Tanglang La ( 5328 Mtrs), Bara-lacha (4890 Mtrs) & Chang La (5360 Mtrs)), Crazy bath in Pangong Tso lake (-4 °C), cute Marmot, Yak, Deer & Pashmina Goats at Changthang Wildlife sanctuary, snow-capped Karakoram Ranges, Sand dunes at Nubra Valley, Diskit Monastery, the Gata loops (22 hairpin bends) at 4190 Mtrs elevation on Pang – Sarchu road, Suraj Taal, Whiskey & Brandy Nallah, Picturesque Jispa, Hiking at 4350 Mtrs Himalayan ranges and driving alongside the rivers across the two states” are never gonna fade away !! Thanks to Thrillophilia for making this trip awesome & memorable one.
24 June 2018
Your Destination would be a dream until you come out and step ahead to it and experience. Leh-Manali Bike ride is one such vibe which will resonate for many years to come. Here the journey was more scintillating then achieving those milestones and Thrillophilia ensured we had great time by organising it perfectly to last mile would like to thank Tarun and Chitransh. Tani and Amit who were our Tour Leaders were just amazing with their hospitality to the care taken through out the ride. Ride at Khardungla Pass, Gata Loops, Zing Zing Bar, Barlachala were just amazing.
Such an amazing bike ride, challenging but with thrill till the end. Make sure that you are prepared to prevent the cold, the rough wind, the altitude sickness etc because even the symptoms of sickness will affect your trip. Khardung La Pass is quite a challenging one, also there are different shorter and longer passes throughout the journey. The service was also nice, not many complaints. The guides will know the place better because they are doing it for long. But still keep the track of the route before you start the trip. The guide was nice to us, keeping everything coordinated. The accommodation and food were also flawless to me.
We booked this Leh Ladakh complete tour from Delhi with the flights. And the whole trip was beautifully managed and it was a mesmerizing place being the Stupas, or rivers, hills or the passes. They were all enchanting and beautiful.
The Thrillophilia team has surpassed all of my expectations! I was initially apprehensive about the Parang La trek because of the altitude and the difficulty, but Thrillophilia made sure I had no issue at all! Everything was taken care of, and the guide was just brilliant. For any further treks, Thrillophilia is my go-to website and the one I’ll always recommend!
A great way to rent a bike and be secure about the condition and price for it. The bike of choice is also available and it is easy to book as well.
The Thrillophilia sales and support teams are absolutely brilliant. When I heard the Parangla trek pitch for the first time from them, I was not sure if the trek would pan out in the exact same way, but surprisingly, it did. The sales team was very articulate with the trek prerequisites, and outlines and the operator had answers to all the questions I asked!
17 November 2019
Leh Ladakh's location had everything that you dreamed about. It had ice (lots and lots of ice), even when I was sleeping battling the cold at night I was could see those ice sheet right in front of my eyes. but the most exciting part was that we were never complaining even under these extreme conditions. the food offered was very tasty. everything was perfectly planned by the thrillophilia team. Awesome experience !!

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People Also Ask About Ladakh

  1. Is Manali to Leh bus safe?

    Yes, travelling to Leh from Manali via Bus is safe considering you are taking the government buses. Since it is a journey of around 18-20 Hours you have to make sure you take a comfortable bus and keep check of your belongings, eat light food and carry essential medicines.
  2. What is the Manali to Leh bus timing?

    For HRTC Buses, the first bus starts at around 04:00 AM and last one goes at 01:00 PM and it will take a stopover at Keylong and starts at 05:00AM from Keylong.
    In case of HPTDC Bus, it starts from Manali at 10 AM and take a stopover at Keylong. It starts from Keylong between 04:00 AM to 05:00 AM.
  3. What is the fare of Manali to Leh bus ?

    There are mainly two buses that takes you from Manali to Leh and prices varies accordingly. The HRTC bus will cost your INR 150 from till Keylong and INR 500 from Keylong to Leh. While, HPTDC bus will cost around INR 2900/- because of the luxury it offers.
  4. How can I go to Manali from Leh by bus?

    To travel from Manali to Leh by bus, one would first have to book a ride from one of the bus operators functioning here. The two primary Manali to Leh bus services available here are HRTC (Himachal Road Transport Company) and HPTDC (Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation). The buses travel to Leh via the Manali-Leh Highway, and the journey takes around 2 days to complete.
  5. Which route is best for Leh?

    The best route to go from Manali to Leh is the Manali-Leh Highway. Stretching across 474 kilometers, the highway is flanked by majestic, snow-capped mountains on all sides, offering a delightful view as one travels along the road.
  6. Is Manali Leh highway safe?

    Yes, Manali-Leh Highway is extremely safe, which is why most Manali to Leh Bus services often opt for this route as the preferred way to travel. Although there might be slight risk involved during the months of snow and rain, it is not considerable enough to hamper one’s journey. Moreover, bus operators take extra precautions during turbulent weather, and check weather conditions beforehand and to offer the smoothest and most hassle-free experience possible.
  7. How far is Manali from Leh?

    Leh is about 428 kilometers away from Manali. It takes about 12 hours to travel between the two places in ideal weather conditions.
  8. How much time will the bus take to reach Leh from Manali?

    It will take around 2 days for the bus to reach Leh from Manali. This includes travel time as well as the time required for rest, food and night stopovers. The distance between the two destinations is 474 kilometers.
  9. Can I do pre-bookings for Manali to Leh bus service?

    Yes, one can easily pre-book tickets for Manali to Leh bus service online and enjoy a hassle free commute. Thrillophilia offers great discounts on this Manali to Leh bus service and is the best platform to pre-book your travel
  10. Is it possible to book the Manali - Leh - Manali bus online?

    Online booking for the Manali to Leh buses is not only possible, but also recommended. By booking the bus tickets online, you can easily avoid the hassle of on-site booking, and thus ensure a smooth experience.

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