Ladakh in December: Places to Visit, Thing to do, Weather Guide

Ladakh in December
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Frozen lakes, snow-covered roads sparkling mountain peaks, perfect scenic backdrop, makes Ladakh in December one of the preferred destination for vacations. Ladakh offers unique vacation goals to travelers in December as the place gets transformed into a fairyland post the snow showers in December. The place of Ladakh offers the perfect blend of Indian and Tibetan characteristics. But before planning a trip to Ladakh in December, make sure to check out the detailed information of the region and you’re traveling accordingly.

6 Best Places To Visit in Ladakh in December

Some of the places to visit in Ladakh in the December include;

  1. Hemis National Park
  2. Kargil
  3. Magnetic Hill
  4. Hall of Fame
  5. Pangong Tso Lake
  6. Nubra Valley

1. Hemis National Park

Hemis National Park

This national park is named after the famous monastery Hemis Gompa, which is an ideal destination for sightseeing in Leh-Ladakh in winter. Also, it is the first national park in the country to be established in the north of the main Himalayan Range. Hemis is home to many endangered species that are found especially at high altitudes only including the rare shape, bharal, and the snow leopard. Among others, the wolf, Pallas’ cat, ibex, Tibetan argali, etc. are also seen here.

Other attractions in this national park include Khurnak valley, the main snow leopard and bharal habitat, Markha valley, Chiling Nala for ibex, and Rumbak Nala.

2. Kargil


One of the toughest terrains worldwide, Kargil is the second largest town of Ladakh after Leh, which is spared on more than 1500 km of area. Located at a height of almost 2700 meters, Kargil is near the Line of Control. Though it is suggested to visit Kargil during the summer season, in case you can tolerate bone-chilling weather conditions, you can visit Kargil in December as well. The temperatures during these months freeze down to -15 to -20 degrees.

The major attractions in Kargil include Sani, Rangdum, Zongkhul, Stonday, etc.

3. Magnetic Hill

Magnetic Hill

Magnetic Hill in Ladakh is a gravity hill where slow-speed cars are drawn against gravity. The Magnetic Hill is a natural wonder at Leh, Ladakh. Here the car will move at a speed of 20 km per hour even if your engine is turned off and in case even if the car is in neutral mode. The travelers can combine their visit to the Magnetic Hill along with the Hall of fame and Gurudwara Pather Sahib for an amazing trip.

4. Hall of Fame

hall of fame leh

The Indian Army constructed and maintained the Hall of Fame, a museum to commemorate the lives of the soldiers who lost their lives during the Indo-Pak wars. The travelers can see the images from the Kargil War displayed on the walls and arms and ammunition used by the soldiers.

5. Pangong Tso Lake

Pangong Tso Lake

Pangong Tso gets frozen in December, wearing the darkest shade of blue and scenic mountain ranges in the backdrop. Pangong Tso lake is the world’s highest saltwater lake stationed located at a height of 4250 meters above sea level. En route to the lake, the travelers have to ride through Khardung La – the highest motorable road in the world. Walk on the frozen lake to have a priceless experience.

6. Nubra Valley

Nubra Valley

Located between Kashmir and Tibet, Nubra Valley is among some of the most exquisite sites in Leh-Ladakh. Nubra valley is almost 150 km from Leh and is known for lovely orchards, scenic vistas, Bactrian camels, and quaint monasteries. Some of the monasteries located in Nubra valley include Ensa, Samstemling, Diskit, and Hunder. Also, ensure you see Sand dunes at Hunder, Shanti Stupa, Leh Palace, Magnetic Hill, Suru valley.

Things To Do in Ladakh in December

The Chadar Trek on the Frozen Lake

The Chadar Trek on the Frozen Lake

The travelers can walk on the frozen lake while walking the Chadar trek. The Chadar trek is one of the special attractions in Leh-Ladakh in December. The Chadar Trek is listed among the world’s toughest treks with trekking under freezing climatic conditions.

The extreme chilly weather leaves the lake frozen as the temperature lowers down to the below-freezing point. The lake gets converted into a subtle sheet of ice, which is ideal for trekking.

Snow Leopard Trek

Snow Leopard Trek

The trek in Hemis National Park is another thing to do in December in Ladakh. The Snow Leopard Trek in Leh-Ladakh in winter is quite popular for sighting wildlife, especially the Himalayan big cat, which is among the endangered species and the pride of the Himalayas. Further, you can see the diverse flora and fauna of the Trans-Himalayan region and magnificent Buddhist monasteries on the way.

Key attractions of Ladakh in December

  • Numerous Monastic Festivals and New Year celebrations in monasteries are organized with full zeal.
  • The travelers can enjoy ice skating on the frozen lakes.
  • Double-humped Bactrian camel ride in Nubra Valley is a lifetime experience.
  • Trekking options in Hemis National Park to spot snow Leopard.
  • Chadar Trek is another popular attraction of Ladakh in December.

Other festivals celebrated in Ladakh in December

Ladakh is not just popular for its scenic views but is renowned for its rich cultural heritage and vibrant festivals. The distinct traditions add charm to the breathtaking beauty of Ladakh. The traditional celebrations and festivals of Ladakh are surely must-see attractions for all travelers.

The festivals celebrated in Ladakh in December include;

  • Winter Games
  • Galdan Namchot
  • Losar (New Year)

Weather in Ladakh in December

The weather in Leh Ladakh in December is often snowy because of its height. The place gets covered with snow and everything gets frosted. However, the snow will not hinder your journey as it either melts soon due to the bright sunny days or else gets cleared. But the temperature during the night drops down to -10 degree Celsius and thus people are suggested to stay indoors during nighttime.

However, the city remains accessible all year round; there are many places along with attractive markets to explore.

Things to carry while visiting Ladakh in December

Since the temperature in Ladakh in December varies from 2°C to -15°C or even lower, it is advised to carry things that will keep you warm and protected from the cold. Make sure you pack enough woolen clothes including thermal wear, thick knit fabrics, caps, socks, etc.

Inner thermals, weatherproof and heavy coats, woolen gloves, socks, stockings, hats, etc. are a must carry and essential items that need to be carried. Some other items that you must carry include:

  • Don’t forget other fundamental necessities such as;
  • Flashlights,
  • Electronic devices like chargers and power banks,
  • Heating pads,
  • Sanitary and toiletry supplies,
  • Cash and cards,
  • Emergency first aid kit,
  • Basics like eatables, and other crucial items that you require on a daily basis.

Road Conditions of Leh in December

  • to heavy snowfall on the high mountain passes, travelers have to take Leh to Srinagar route as the Leh Manali route gets closed in December.
  • There might be heavy snow at Zoji La Pass, but the Border Road Organization (BRO) clears the snow at the earliest.
  • The roads to Nubra Valley and Pangong Tso from Leh remain open all over the year. However, due to heavy snowfall, tourists prefer taking a private taxi/cab from Leh, driven by local professionals, rather than driving themselves.

How to Reach Leh Ladakh in December

Leh Ladakh is accessible in December and it might be the best time to accomplish your vacation goals. The thrill of traveling on the snow-covered routes and some of the highest passes in the sub-zero temperature is something exceptional and thrilling. Travelers can either reach Leh Ladakh by road or by flight.

By Air

The most common way of traveling to Ladakh is by air. Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport is the nearest airport located almost 3 km from the city center and is the main airport of Leh. The airport is well-connected to all major Indian cities including Delhi, Chandigarh, Srinagar, Kolkata, Mumbai, and Jammu. The flights operate throughout the year; however, there might be delays in flights in December due to weather conditions.

By Road

Though the Manali – Leh route gets closed in December due to heavy snow. However, Srinagar – Leh route remains open throughout the year and travelers can take that route to reach Ladakh via road. Generally, it takes two days to reach Leh via Srinagar but due to heavy snowfall at the high-altitude passes in December, there might be some delay. So while traveling to Ladakh in December, always remain prepared to face extreme climatic conditions and thus carry enough woolen as well.

Do’s and Don’ts

During your Ladakh vacation in December, make sure to follow certain do’s and don’ts:


  • Make sure to check weather conditions before arriving.
  • Always carry a water bottle and dry food as it helps stay hydrated at high altitudes.
  • Carry extra batteries for digital products and keep mobile phones charged.
  • Carry all the required medicines for headache, fever, and vomiting.
  • Dress humbly while visiting monasteries.


  • Do not plan any sightseeing tour immediately after arriving in Leh as it is important to get acclimatized.
  • Without taking permission of monks, do not click their pictures.
  • You are suggested not to travel solo on a bike in December as the roads might become slippery and many times get blocked due to heavy snowfall.


From adventurous trekkers to snow lovers, all the travelers looking for some thrill can visit Ladakh in December. With so many attractions, places to visit, things to do, and affordable stay options, your Ladakh trip can become more adventurous. So don’t wait for more, rather book your trip to Ladakh in December from Honeymoon Bug.

Frequently Asked Questions About Ladakh In December 2022

How cold is Ladakh in December?

Ladakh in December witness a major drop in the temperature, with the temperature dropping to -30°C as well.

Is there any oxygen problem in Ladakh?

Ladakh is located at a high altitude, almost 12,00 feet above sea level. At this altitude, sometimes people find difficulty in breathing or likely experience altitude sickness but it gets better with time.

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