One of the common questions that comes to mind when planning a road trip to Ladakh is the need to carry fuel in the car / bike. Will there be sufficient Fuel stations on the way ?
We’ll try to answer this question based on which vehicle you are driving & which route you are taking. You must understand your vehicle’s mileage & fuel tank capacity in order to make an informed decision. There is no need for being overly cautious either.
Below is the fuel station map which will help you get an overview of the locations where fuel is almost always available
Various Vehicles and there fuel tank capacity
- Bikes RE Thunderbird 500 CC have a fuel capacity of 18 Ltr
- RE Classic ( 500 CC or 350 CC ) 13.5 Ltr
- RE Himalayan 15 Ltr
- Mahindra Scorpio : 55 Ltr
- Mahindra XUV 500 : 70 Ltr
- Toyota Fortuner : 70 Ltr
- Duster : 50 Ltr
If you are driving XUV / Duster / Fortuner / RE Thunderbird then by and large you won’t need extra fuel with you
Fuel on Srinagar – Leh Highway
On Srinagar Leh highway, there is absolutely no need to carry fuel whether you are driving a bike or an SUV. There are fuel stations available at regular intervals. Just refuel when you see the fuel station and be rest assured.
Detour to Zanskar on Srinagar – Leh Highway
Padum has a fuel station and if you are planning to go all the way to Padum then you are good just ensure that you leave from Kargil with a full tank
If your plan is to go to Rangdum and go up till Penzi La and then return to Kargil even then you are okay and no extra fuel is required for SUV but if you are doing it on bike then you certainly require extra fuel
Do carry extra fuel if you are planning to do the Rangdum/Penzi La and back to Kargil on a bike
Fuel on 3 Day trip to Nubra – Pangong and back to Leh
Before 2018, there was no fuel available in Nubra Valley and if your plan was to do a this 3 day trip via Shyok or Wari La and include turtuk then you were seriously short of Fuel.
But now there is good news as Diskit fuel pump is fully operational for past 2 years ( 2018 onwards ) and hence you can explore Nubra Valley and go to Pangong without any worries ..
The fuel station near Diskit is now functional and there is no need to carry extra fuel now for this 3 day trip
Fuel in Changthang Region
While planning to visit the remote areas of Ladakh like Tsaga La – Chushul – Hanle – Tso Moriri – Tso Kar – Leh you definitely need to carry fuel. This circuit is close to 700 kms so carry fuel based on which SUV / bike you are driving
A shop in Tangste village sells fuel and you can inquire should you need in case of emergency.
No Fuel is available in this circuit, so carry fuel when planning a road trip through this region of Ladakh
Leh – Manali Direct Route
The only availability of fuel on this route is in Tandi. Tandi is roughly 300 kms from Karu. Karu is roughly 50 kms from Leh towards Manali / Pangong side which has the fuel pump. Most bikes will need to carry fuel while most Cars/SUV will not need to carry fuel on the Leh – Manali section
How to carry fuel
Please remember, if you carry fuel in regular plastic cans in a Car, you could suffer from nausea due to the fumes it emits.
Please remember, if you carry fuel in regular plastic can in a Car, fumes do come out and it can cause nausea, so make an informed choice
Only a steel Jerry Can, such as this one, is robust and can be carried safely.
Desi jugad is to use a polythene sheet to tighten the lid of the Can
Thank you very much to you and your team for arranging this fantastic tour. One of the best pick from this tour was your meticulous planning and promptness of service. All arrangements were fantastic, be it a delivery of vehicle at Chandigarh airport, hotels particularly at Chandigarh, Leh, Nubra, Pangong. However the best was at Jispa, Kargil and Srinagar for different reasons. Jispa was simple but authentic with very tasty food.
Rajesh & Gauri Natu
Graphic Designer, Apple
Sunil, after I ran 21k Marathon I bragged about it for years. The same is being repeated again, with my ambition to drive across the Himalayas, which was almost faded with Srinagar under curfew. You and Chetan were the spark to our fire that we could do this drive and without a single trouble. Driving is a passion but driving thru places where there are no roads is trouble, but your breakup of program and awesome car condition helped us actually sail thru. Three cheers and five stars.
Absolute Networks, Mumbai
Wow. wow, wow. What a experience! We took the route of Delhi - Jammu - Srinagar - Leh - Sarchu - Manali - Delhi. Sunil Kapoor gave us excellent service which includes his next to new 4WD in immaculate condition and all hotels were top class. Coming from Australia, we were bit nervous in start but when we met Sunil, we had full trust and all went very positive. Sunil gave us perfect instructions and everything was according to plan. Thank you Sunil and your team for our one of the best experience in life you have provided us.
Director, Webential, Australia
Eight of us from Sri Lanka got Sunil to arrange a self driven tour to Leh and we are very happy with our decision. He was punctual, trustworthy and met our expectations. The service provided was very professional. As foreigners it’s hard to arrange such a tour by ourselves and Unwind outdoor filled in the gap perfectly. All places we stayed were nice and decent. Should specifically mention about the two Scorpios which we instantly fell in love with. They were very well maintained ...
Friends from SriLanka
After days of research, we finally came across a facebook page called ‘Unwind Outdoors’. It seemed like our dream was going to be finally true. Very reasonably priced and Sunil from Unwind was like a know-it-all person.
The itinerary was so crisp and so very well laid out that there was no reason for us to worry other than coping up with nature’s fury.
Clifford Chance, Delhi
We did a SUV self drive trip from Chandigarh to Ladakh and back organized by Unwind Outdoor.
Highly recommend Unwind Outdoor as Sunil and Manpreet took care of everything we needed (car, hotel bookings, sightseeing and food recommendations, permits) and everything was organized seamlessly. Sunil was very patient with all our queries, giving suggestions and options to suit our preferences.
Ashish & Neha Thadani
Great to see the know-how of the Unwind Outdoor team regarding every aspect of the Srinagar - Leh - Chandigarh self drive trip. From weather conditions, to road conditions, to health/clothing requirements, and also driving instructions - Sunil and Manpreet are warm, meticulous and knowledgable. Villa Himalaya in Sonamarg surpassed all our expectations and ensured that our expected standards for the rest of the trip were extremely high.
Symbiosis Law School, Mumbai
Thanks Sunil for arranging a wonderful trip. Everything went well and we were in good hands with friendly and competent drivers. Accommodation was good and tents were comfortable beyond our expectations. We didn't have problem with food choices. It was a totally rejuvenating vacation and experience for us. Thanks from us in Singapore!
We had an amazing 9-day from Manali to Leh. Serene, breathless and picturesque. High altitude sickness was a big issue for us but we were in good hands.
Unwind Outdoor was superb in arranging and coordinating the trip. Taking care of all arrangements and checking-in on us. Kudos to Sunil and his team.
Assistant Director, Jurong Town Corporation, Singapore
We travelled as a couple & completed a self drive trip from Delhi-Jammu-Srinagar-Kargil-Leh-Nubra-Pangong-Tso Moriri-Sarchu-Manali-Delhi. Itinerary was meticulously designed to be a mix of adventure and comfort. Hotel choices were best. Support was available at all points in case of emergency.Vehicle provided was top notch. Thanks to Mr. Sunil Kapoor for personally putting in efforts to maintain such high standards.
Nikhil & Neha Mazumdar
Manager L&T, Mumbai
Six of us (two families) travelled to Leh in Jul / Aug 2015 and we had an excellent experience with Unwind Outdoor. From the very beginning of our excited planning phase, Sunil has been willingly suggesting us options, number of days, places to visit etc. He has all the knowledge of the terrain, passionate about trekking and traveling himself, so he understands travel-crazy people such as me and my quirks.
We landed in Leh in time for cloudbursts and flashfloods and landslides (along with mud and rocks sliding too). Despite Nature's fury, Sunil and Skarma made sure we were utmost safe and comfortable. These guys are just not into travel business, they help people fulfil their travel dreams. Truly! Go guys!!
Barclays Bank, Bangalore