Coming to Ladakh was like a dream. While I had anticipated breathtaking sights, I did not expect to be overwhelmed with such beauty.
Since my travel companion and I were arriving at the tail end of winter and the roads were closed, we took a flight from New Delhi to Leh. I asked at the check-in counter that we each have a window seat so that we could fully enjoy the scenery ahead that morning. I was happy I made that decision, and I strongly recommend this for anyone flying for the first time to Ladakh.
I had planned to sleep a bit on the plane as soon as I finished eating the in-flight meal, as I barely got any sleep at the airport – we had arrived late night at the airport directly from Agra.
But, as I was still eating, I did a double take when I saw this outside my window:
How could I sleep now after seeing this? My full attention was now outside.
As I saw snowcapped mountain after snowcapped mountain, I began to see shapes and patterns. Many times in the past especially during childhood I would see and imagine shapes and figures in clouds, and now I was seeing them in the Himalayas – the Himalayas! I could not contain my glee. At some point I must have bounced up and down like a child on my seat, and I did not care. It also helped that I had the row on my side to myself.
With each moment, I found myself more and more arrested by Himalayas’ beauty. Each scenery was just as beautiful – or even more beautiful – than the last.
I found myself being swept away in a euphoric bliss I haven’t felt in several years. At that moment, having witnessed such unbelievable and almost unbearable beauty, I believed I was ready to die, if that also meant I could be a part of such beauty. The first time I felt this was when I first laid eyes on a glistening white sand bar amid blue waters years ago. This flight was the next. It might sound like a morbid thought to the average person (my travel buddy was quite mortified when I shared with him this feeling later on), but I was left with a lingering and profound sense of peace.
Later, those feelings naturally faded and were replaced by the desire to see more of that kind of beauty in my lifetime. And yes, I would be seeing more for the rest of my Ladakh trip.
This flight – the best plane ride I’ve ever had so far – was just the beginning. I would be seeing more beauty that would leave me awestruck in the coming days.
To see what happened next, read Part 2 of my Ladakh adventure: Mountains, markets, and monasteries: Magical one-day tour of Leh town in Ladakh.
Part 3 is: Deeper into snowy and monastery-carved mountains: Day tour of Alchi and Likir Monastery, a walk on snowscapes, and the road to Pangong Lake, Ladakh.
21 thoughts on “The most scenic plane ride: Himalayas in photos along New Delhi-Leh flight”
Breathtaking views! ❤
Yes. ❤ 🙂
I love these photos. A snow paradise.
Exactly. A paradise. 🙂 Thanks, Dharzie!
These are gorgeous photos, Claire! What cam did you use? 😀
Thanks, Kira! ^_^ Olympus TG-3. Same one I used in Siargao during our trip.
grabe, para ngang painting, especially when you got closer sa Leh, dun sa brown parts na ng mountains. I had to look twice if it was real or not. And I’m happy you got to see the Himalayas from the plane. How about climbing it the next time you’re there? Also, medyo morbid nga what you shared to Jherson.. hahah! But I totally get you, especially after seeing such a beautiful perspective. 🙂 Glad you guys are home safe!
Matindi-tinding preparation yan para umakyat kasi simpleng lakad lang na medyo inclined ang hirap na dahil sa altitude hahahaha! Pero oo, ang ganda talaga ng Ladakh kaya nagkaron ako ng ganong moment. 🙂
Same sentiments. Its a childhood dream because of Heidi in the Alps. wahaha
Pingback: Mountains, markets, and monasteries: Magical one-day tour of Leh town in Ladakh | Traveling Light
Reading this makes me want to blindly book RT flights to Ladakh already. 🙂 I’ll be asking you and Jherson for tips ha. Keep the India posts coming!
Surely. Just say when you plan to go. 🙂 Ladakh is truly magical.
Pingback: Deeper into snowy and monastery-carved mountains: Day tour of Alchi and Likir Monastery, a walk on snowscapes, and the road to Pangong Lake, Ladakh | Traveling Light
Leh airport doesn’t have an aircraft landing system, so the pilot has to manually glide in for landing. And on Enroute to Leh, you come across a lot of glaciers, at one pint you feel like dropping down and start skiing.
Thanks for righting this
Cool! I didn’t know that the pilot had to manually glide, but I kind of felt that our pilot was quite good.
It is the same flight that takes off from new delhi and returns back and all of this has to be done before 2 pm because after this time the weather starts to change. Only if the weather is good to go, flight takes off from New Delhi.
Can you tell me if the cabin crew allowed you to take photos during the flight? Thank you, or did you have to do it secretly? What seat/row number do you recommend?
I think it was not an issue as I started taking photos when the plane was at a stable altitude (the time when food is being served and people can go to the toilet) and the cabin crew could see me and others taking photos too.
To be honest, I no longer remember my row number, but it was somewhere in the middle (between the front and back rows), if my little memory serves me right. I just aimed to get a window seat, and I got it! 🙂 Enjoy your own flight!
I am keen to know if it were difficult for you to take photos during the flight due to the cabin crew? Did they openly allow you to take photos? I am booked on the leftside Del-Leh but right up the front, so am wondering if it will be too hard for me to hide my camera? Your advice would be appreciated 🙂 Thanks, Susan.
They could see me and other passengers taking photos, and nobody told me to stop. I also started taking photos when the plane was at a stable cruising altitude, around the time flight attendants were serving food. Didn’t see it as an issue then. I took A LOT of photos. Perhaps it might also depend on the airline.
Thanks for your quick reply. I’m flying with Go Air.