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Delhi to Chitkul with HRTC busses

Chitkul is famously known amongst tourists as the last village of India. People throughout the globe visit this tiny village in order to experience one of the purest air and picturesque landscapes of the region. The last ITBP check post is also a tourist attraction here which is about 3km from Chitkul village.

Delhi to Chitkul with HRTC busses

Busses are the best means of transport to explore this region because of tough terrains and poor road conditions of the region.

Best time to visit Chitkul:

Chitkul remains covered under thick sheet of snow during winters and even the natives migrate to lover regions of Himalayas during winter. In order to reach Chitkul in winters you might have trek for 20 odd kilometres. Totally depending upon the weather conditions of that time, so plan accordingly.

April to November is the best time to visit Chitkul. I’ll personally suggest to avoid monsoon because the region is prone to landslides and the roads might even be a bit slippery sometimes.

Mobile network at Chitkul:

No other network except BSNL 2G works at Chitkul. It’s located at one of the most remote regions of Kinnaur. So, do not expect to get any internet connectivity here.

How to reach Chitkul:

Chitkul through Shimla:

This is the shorter route amongst both and remains accessible throughout the year. If you are planning to reach Chitkul via bus you can either board a direct bus from Chandigarh or can reach Reckong Peo via Shimla.

In order to reach Reckong Peo you can board a bus in the evening from Shimla which is at 6:30pm. This bus will drop you at Reckong Peo between 4:00 – 5:00 am in the morning. It’s a long and treacherous journey through the swirling himlyan roads.

It’s highly advised to stay at least for a day at Reckong Peo in order to acclimatize to the high altitude. But if you don’t have the luxury of time then you can even start your journey the very same day. There’s an everyday bus to Sangla and Chitkul which starts at around 9:00 am in the morning. It takes around 3 hours to reach Chitkul from Reckong Peo. During that time the bus covers about 60km from Reckong Peo to Chitkul.

Delhi to Shimla:

It’s an 8-9 hours journey from Delhi to Shimla in a Volvo. I’ll personally suggest to board the first Volvo from Kasmirigate bus stand which leaves at 6:45AM. So, that you can reach Shimla before 5:00PM and can board a bus to Reckong Peo from there.

If you really don’t want to travel continuously then you can either stay and explore shimla after taking rest at night or can straight away choose to visit and stay at some of the offbeat destinations nearby like Narkanda or Chail totally depending upon you.

Shimla to Reckong Peo:

It’s a long and tiring journey from Shimla to Reckong Peo and it takes another 9-10 hours depending upon the road construction conditions. There are no Volvo or air conditioned busses busses on this route. The bus will drop you at Reckong Peo bus stop in the morning between 4:00 to 5:00AM.

It’s highly advised to take rest at least for a night in Reckong Peo in order to acclimate to high altitudes.

Reckong Peo to Chitkul:

There is a small 38 seater bus which departs from Reckong to Chitkul via Sangla every morning between 9:00 -9:30AM. There is another bus later in the afternoon at around 12:00PM. So, you can choose your bus accordingly.

It’s a 3 hours journey from Reckong Peo to Chitkul including a halt at Sangla bus stand.

Chitkul to Reckong Peo:

HRTC bus is at 2:00-3:00PM which sometimes gets delayed depending upon the road conditions. Which will drop you at Reckong Peo at around 6:00PM.

Busses and shared cabs are readily available to Rampur and Shimla from Reckong Peo and same is the condition with Shimla to Delhi.

Chitkul through Manali:

This is a much longer route when compared to Shimla route. This route takes you through the beautiful spiti valley. There are no direct busses from Manali to Chitkul but you will have to change bus from Kaza.

Kullu/Manali to Kaza:

The bus to Kaza starts early morning from Kullu and reaches Manali between 5:30 to 6:00am in the morning. It takes a complete day to reach Kaza because of the road conditions. This route takes you through Rohtang and Kunzum pass as well which remains covered with snow for most part of the year. So it’s better to check before starting your journey from wherever you want.

Kaza to Reckong Peo:

There are not many options on this route and there’s only one HRTC bus from Kaza to Reckong Peo which takes around 10 hours to complete this journey. The bus starts from Kaza at 7:30am and reaches Reckong between 5-6:00PM with a few stops.

Busses from Kaza spiti valley
Busses from Kaza

Small traveller busses and taxis are also available Infront of Kaza taxi union office which can save you some time in reaching Reckong Peo. They are available on a shared basis in the morning only. They charge somewhere between 1000-1500 INR per seat. So you can choose between any of these two options.

If you want you can also visit a few places near Kaza as well. You can check the details in the link below.

Also check: Places to visit in Spiti Valley

Reckong Peo to Chitkul:

There are only 2 busses from Reckong Peo to chitkul. The first bus to Chitkul starts at 9:30am in the morning. The second bus at leaves Reckong Peo at 12:00PM which returns from Chitkul at 3:00PM in the afternoon.

You can either stay at chitkul or can decide to travel back the very same day by the afternoon with the last bus to Reckong Peo.

Chitkul – Reckong Peo – Shimla:

There are a number of options from Chitkul to reach Reckong Peo. If you want to finish your journey a little early then you can board any bus till Karcham from where you can easily find a bus to Shimla as well.

There are a number of busses to Shimla at regular intervals from Reckong Peo, still the last buss rolls out of Reckong Peo bus stand at around 6 in the evening which reaches Shimla pretty late in the night. After reaching Shimla there are a number of busses to Chandigarh and Delhi at regular interval.

So, here are 2 ways you can complete your Delhi to Chitkul trip using HRTC busses. Hope this helps you and if it does then do let me know in the comments below about your trip.

Hey, I am a photographer and a blogger based out of Lucknow. I love to travel and capture photographs, that's why I started this blog with an aim to share my experiences and tips which I have acquired by travelling.


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