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Indian Himalayas

Away from the teeming plains, the north of India, near the borders with China, Tibet and Nepal, provides some spectacular trekking country. Much of the Himalayas lies in India and the two treks featured here show two very different sides of this multi-faceted nation.

Leh, in the region of Ladakh, is still dominated by the now ruined Leh Palace, former mansion of the royal family of Ladakh, built in the same style and about the same time as the Potala Palace in Lhasa. The Ladakh region is the meeting point of the Himalaya (rivers mainly flowing into the Ganges) and the Karakorum (rivers mainly flowing into the Indus). It is also a meeting point of many cultures, ancient and modern.

The trek to the Source of the Ganges has a more focused destination than the exploration of Ladakh. Including a visit to Rishikesh, the town made famous by the Beatles, this trek takes us to Gaumukh, the mythological source of the River Ganges, which is at the snout of the Gangotri glacier. At Gaumukh, blocks of glacier fall into the river and pilgrims 'cleanse themselves of their sins' in freezing water.