Adventure Camps’ in-charge Bintu Gopal said he is getting good response from passers in all installed 30 camps. He said, “Leh tourist season has picked up a good speed. Manali-Leh highway being a most preferred route to reach Leh, hundreds of jeep safari, mountain biking and amateur adventure lovers are passing by the camps every day. Majority of tourists from abroad are staying here. They are booking camps in advance.”
After Manali hotels, camps pack in Sarchu
With summer season attracting thousands of tourists to Ladakh, the Manali-Leh highway has been busy once again. While summer season in Manali is close to being retarded, the midway camps at Sarchu have been jam packed with travellers advancing to Leh.
Sarchu, 222 km from Manali is the last Himachali hamlet on 474 km-long Manali-Leh highway where travellers spend a night before starting remaining adventurous journey to Leh. Though a small village is situated at Sarchu but no guest houses or hotels are available there. Camping is the only way to spend a night here. So far, eight travel agencies have established around 200 camps this year where around 500 tourists can stay comfortably. If number exceeds the limit, tourists are forced to sleep in their vehicles. Soon the Himachal tourism department is going to install their own camps for the convenience of passengers travelling by their buses.
If staying at camps situated in cold desert is a lifetime experience, it is not a cheap in any form. Owners were fetching charge of Rs 1,000 to Rs 2,000 from a camper which includes only a dinner and a breakfast. Besides, campers were facing difficulties booking a bed on the spot owing to advance booking by internet.
Rajesh Kumar, owner of Goldrop camps at Sarchu said slowly the season is shifting from Manali to Ladakh and it will last till onset of winters. “Scores of domestic tourists are reaching Sarchu every day and now foreigners too have started touring Ladakh. They start from Manali early in the morning and reach here late evening. Sarchu is a rest house for tourists exhausted by hilly journey where they get rejuvenated for further journey,” he said.