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The gateway to Ladakh and ‘The Land of Lamas’, Leh is a small but vibrant town. A melting pot of religion, along one street you might hear the chanting of Buddhist monks, a muezzin calling his brothers to prayer or the bells and dedications of a Hindu temple. Our pick of the best places to stay in Leh are all ideally located for exploring the town’s attractions.
This congregation of faiths and cultures is reflected in the food too. With plenty of cafes and restaurants you can sample Tibetan momos and Kashmiri kebabs in a couple of strides.
A great place to stop off for some rest and recuperation, a slap up meal and a spot of shopping either before or after beginning your adventures. There are plenty of agencies in town to help you book everything from treks to the Zanskar Valley, white water rafting down the River Indus, a motorbike trip to Pangong Lake or traversing the Ladakhi plateau by pony. There are countless ways to explore this land of extremes.
Our pick of things to do whilst you're here include:
- Overlooking the town whilst almost blending in to the mountainous scenery is Leh Palace. Modelled on Tibet’s Potala Palace it is a small, but perfectly formed version of its bigger brother.
- Take a tour of the old town, with its winding goat strewn alleyways and vegetable stalls. There is also a thriving Tibetan market selling handmade wares.
- Open Hand is the go-to place for a freshly ground coffee and a sweet treat, whilst Bon Appetit serves a blend of continental and Ladakhi dishes including their famous chocolate momos!
Our pick of the best places to stay in Leh all provide a comfortable stay within easy reach of town.
For great location
- Ask any Leh local if they know The Grand Dragon and the answer will be affirmative. The best accommodation in town and within walking distance of its sights, it provides comfortable rooms and pleasant gardens in which guests can bask in the midday sun.
For great value
- With rooms starting from just £40 a night, The Kaal provides traditional Ladakhi accommodation at a great price. Within walking distance of town this is a great stay.
For boutique chic
- Not what you'd expect to find in a such a remote location, but the Gomang Boutique hotel offers chic modern rooms, all just a short walk from the centre of town.
Still not sure which to book? Browse through our list of the best places to stay in Leh to start to plan your trip. Or you can check out all our recommendations in Jammu and Kashmir, or contact one of our friendly gurus for advice.
Best Hotels in Leh
The Kaal 40 rooms from $51Leh, Leh
The Kaal provides a simple, yet homely stay in Leh. Rooms have wood panelling, living areas and large windows, typical of the region, which open up onto terraces or private balconies. Bathrooms are basic. There is a pleasant sunny garden and restaurant serving local dishes - momos are a speciality!Local markets - Leh market is just a short walk away and specialises cashmere shawls and traditional Ladakhi artwork and jewellery.Sights nearby - Ladakh Palace, Shanti stupa and Sunset Point are all within easy reach.Views - Great views from hotelGreat walks - Good for walkers.
Gomang Boutique Hotel 15 rooms from $91Leh, Leh
From the approach Gomang is your typical Ladakhi hotel, complete with intricate wood carving. Step inside and it is a stylish, boutique offering. Rooms feature hardwood flooring, beds with leather headboards and colourful scatter cushions. Bathrooms are clean and modern. And there's a sunny garden!Local markets - Good for local colour.Views - Great views from hotelGreat walks - Good for walkers.Sights nearby - Well located for major sights.
The Grand Dragon 48 rooms from $129Leh, Leh
Within walking distance of town, everyone in Leh knows The Grand Dragon. Enjoying views across the Ladakh mountain range and River Indus, Taste of Dragon Restaurant serves Indian, Kashmiri, Chinese and Continental dishes. The hotel is decorated in a modern style with traditional Ladakhi trimmings.Local exploring - The Grand Dragon is ideally placed for exploring the sights of Leh as well as monastries and countryside further afield.Trekking - Ladakh is a trekkers paradise from day, to several week, long treks.Sights nearby - Shanti stupa, Leh Palace and Sunset Point are all within easy reach.Local markets - Leh market is awash with cashmere, silver jewellery and handicrafts.