Planning on riding/driving from Manali to Leh? You can explore the route in an interactive map right here and also download a .gpx file of the route for your GPS.

On this 470 km trip you will climb 14,000 meters and cross five major high-altitude passes (called La). If you are cycling, the climb to the pass will seem endless. I have marked all of the passes in the file just so that you know how much more you need to suffer!

The five major passes on route from Manali to Leh:

  • Rohtang La — 3,973 m pass
  • Baralacha La – 4,911 m pass
  • Naki La – 4,694 m pass
  • Lachulung La – 5,061 m pass
  • Taglang La – 5,328 m pass
Note: Change the size of the map (Go full screen) using the icon on the top right of the map. 

Just for the record this is not the data from my GPS. Batteries for my Garmin 305 malfunctioned during my cycle trip. This map and GPX file was recreated later.

Download Manali to Leh .gpx file.
Download Manali to Leh .kml file.

More Manali to Leh cycling stories:
Manali to Leh cycling – What does it take?
Manali to Leh – Self-supported cycling trip
Packing suggestion for multi-day self-supported cycling trip

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  • Naresh Parekh June 7, 2016   Reply →

    hi loved the photographs and inspired by your article. we a group of 3 friends are planning this since 3-4 years but somehow just do it in September just wanted your inputs on do we follow some specialised exercise regimen and whats the basic preparation time required to get the level of fitness required to cycle through that route.. We plan it somewhere after 13th September is it a right time too.

    Your inputs will be highly appreciated

    • Ajay Jaiman June 13, 2016   Reply →

      First a disclaimer: There can’t be one right answer for everybody — we have different backgrounds, experiences and levels of fitness. More specific to this trip a lot depends on how you are riding — vehicle-supported, or self-supported; leisurely or in race-mode…

      Keeping that in mind I have created a short quiz:
      – Can you comfortably ride ride 100kms in flatland in four odd hours?
      – Can you comfortably spend 8 to 10 hours in the saddle in a single day?
      – Have you done some multi-day rides?
      – Can you cycle up hills? Let’s say 700 meter ascent with average gradient of 6%.

      If the answer is a clear ‘Yes’ to all of of the above then you ‘may’ be good to go. If the answer is a clear ‘No’, then it might be worth ticking off the above before attempting Manali-Leh.

      The only other thing is altitude acclimatization. Everybody reacts to it differently. As best as I can tell, there is no correlation between fitness and acclimatization. If you have never spent active time above 4,000 meters then it might be worth keeping that in mind while planing the trip.

      Now about the September 13 start. You could, but I think it may be better to start a week or two earlier. Some years end September can get very harsh. Occasionally you may get some snowfall on the passes. And dhabas may close early. Again, this may or may not be a big problem depending on how you are riding — supported or not.

      Hope this helps. All the best!

      • Vikash kumar August 4, 2016   Reply →

        Hi Ajay …

        very inspired by your trip….

        Thank you for writing such a nice blog. Your’s is by far the best and most informative blog i have come across about this journey.

        I am about to do a solo trip from manali to leh on bicycle early September 2016. ….

        I have clocked about a thousand kms on my bike and practicing for the upcoming leh manali trip.But i have never camped what are the challenges ..

        [email protected]

        • Ajay Jaiman August 5, 2016   Reply →


          Why don’t you just camp outside where ever you are. Of course if you are in a big city you may have to get away for a little bit. It might be worth the effort.

          If you do not have some high-altitude experience that is something you may have to be very careful about. Especially if you are attempting this solo, as your first major trip.

          All the best.

          • Vachan Dev August 27, 2016  

            hi guys i am planning cycling around 3 sep.. manali to leh.. anyone going during that time, pls contact me @7022035814/9844001302

    • Vikash kumar August 4, 2016   Reply →

      Hi naresh

      i am also planning to do manali leh on by cycle in september. I case you guys are doing it … please join in…. it would be fun

      [email protected]
      mobile: 8804802639

      • Dhruv Gour August 9, 2016   Reply →

        we are starting over bycicle trip from manali at 10 sept. please join us. self supported ride .

        • Vikash kumar August 12, 2016   Reply →

          hi dhruv.. please give you contact details .. so that i can join you …. and also can discuss the details…
          my details are as below :
          watsapp : 8800101317
          mobile: 8804802639

          • Vachan Dev August 27, 2016  

            hi guys i am planning cycling around 3 sep.. manali to leh.. anyone going during that time, pls contact me @7022035814/98440013

  • Abhishek Garg June 7, 2017   Reply →

    I am planning manali to leh this june, anyone interested to join me?

    • Dilip Garg July 15, 2017   Reply →

      Hi Abhishek, Did you complete the cycling in June?

      I am planning Manali Leh Khardungla in September first week. Haven’t yet decided about the self-supported aspect yet. I am looking for people with similar itinerary in mind to join in.

  • Dilip Garg July 15, 2017   Reply →

    Hello Ajay,

    Its incredible, the amount of information that is available on the blog. Kudos to you for discussing every query!!
    If I can complete reading the blog in its entirety then may be, well may be I won’t even need anymore information about my planned Manali Leh Khardungla cycling trip in September 2017.

    The self-supported aspect of the ride doesn’t seem exciting to me, because then it’ll involve carrying items for cooking and accommodation both. I’d rather choose to stay in a roadside dhaba or tent and eat a roti or dal after a tiring day of cycling. If I can execute such a trip even without cooking/accommodation I’ll pat on my back upon return. 🙂 I only want my luggage to carry minimal clothing and bike repair items.

    There are two things that concerns me, first is the bike reliability itself, and second is the lack of any companion.

    I have seen videos or read blog posts where a person has just taken a regular Indian MTB (like Hercules, Hero) costing around 10-15k to such terrain and completed the trip without any hiccups, so first item seem rather a matter of luxury than the necessity per say. However a better equipped bike would be more reliable in terms of required maintenance during the snow/mud/gravel road conditions. I understand that too.

    A companion though doesn’t ensure your safety or even guarantee the completion of the trip, he can be a big mental support throughout. I am not too keen on doing this trip without a travel partner.

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