Kaza is the district headquarter of the spiti valley and is a major point of attraction for tourists visiting spiti valley. Kaza is based at an altitude of around 3800m at the left bank of the spiti river.
Kaza is also home to the world’s highest petrol pump. Kaza is the largest town of lahaul and spiti valley.
Best time to visit Kaza:
May to September is the best time to visit Kaza.
How to reach Kaza:
Kaza via road:
If you are travelling with your own vehicle, either bike or car there are 2 possible routes to reach Kaza. One is through Manali and other one is through Shimla. Shimla is a longer route when compared to Manali but it provides easy accessibility throughout the year whereas, the Manali route remains closed for around 3-4 months in a year.
Kaza Route through Shimla:
It’s a significantly longer route when compared to Manali – Kaza route but the road conditions are significantly better, except there are a few rough patches.
Shimla – Narkanda – Rampur – Reckong Peo – Nako – Tabo – Kaza
Kaza Route through Manali:
This is a lot shorter route when compared to the Shimla one but it remains closed for a significant period of time in any given year.
Kullu – Manali – Rohtang Pass – Kunzum Pass – Kaza
Kaza with bus:
Again, There are 2 possible routes to reach Kaza, one through Shimla and other through Manali.
Kaza via Shimla:
There is only one direct bus from Shimla to Kaza which starts from Shimla at 6:30 PM and takes around 18 -19 hours to reach Kaza via Reckong Peo. The bus halts at Reckong Peo for around an hour and then starts the journey again to Kaza.
But if you don’t want to spend 18 hours straight then you can board a bus till Rampur Busbar then an early morning bus from there will take you to Tabo via Reckong Peo. Then there are a number of options available between Tabo and Kaza, I’ll personally suggest staying at Tabo for a night. You can cover all the tourist attractions at Tabo in 2-3 hours only.
First bus in the morning from Tabo will reach tabo at around 8:30 am in the morning from Tabo bus station which will take you to Kaza.
Kaza via Manali:
There are 2 early morning busses from Manali which will take you to Kaza only when both Rohtang and Kunzum pass are open.
These bus services starts, somewhere around mid June just after the route is opened for public transport.
The only Kaza to Shimla bus starts from Kaza at 7:30 AM and if you are planning to reach Manali then the first bus to Kullu starts at 5:00 AM from Kaza.
Stay at Kaza:
Just like other places in spiti valley and Kinnaur there is no lack of homestays and even hotels at Kaza as well. There is even a newly built zostel there as well for those solo travellers who are looking to make new friends and stay at Kaza at pretty affordable price.
Camps are also available at Kaza. There are a number of camps at the bank of spiti river as well.
Food at Kaza:
There are a variety of food options in Kaza. There are a number of restaurants which serve Indian and Tiberian cuisines and a few of them serve Israeli cuisines as well. Still the food options at Kaza are limited, if you are not fond of Thupka and Momos, then you definitely are not going to enjoy a traditional meal here.
Vegetarian and non-veg both options are available almost everywhere.
Mobile networks at Kaza:
BSNL 2G is the only option you are going to get here. Don’t expect to use Instagram and Facebook here on your smartphones or even laptops. There are a few restaurants which provide WiFi here but don’t expect a lot from them as well, other than responding to WhatsApps as they are quite slow.
Must visit Places from Kaza:
You can either rent a bike or can hire a taxi in order to explore the nearby regions.
Hikkim : World’s highest post office
Chicham : Famous for chicham Bridge
Langza : The fossil village
Komic : Highest Village
Kibber : Declared sanctuary
Dhankar : Ancient capital of spiti
Tabo : 1017 years old Monastery
Kee : Biggest Monastery and religious training center
Pin Valley : National Park
Gue : Famous for Ancient Mummy
If you are planning a trip to spiti valley, Kaza can make up for ideal base sight for people visiting this region.
If you are on a tight budget then HRTC busses are the best options which you will be left with. I’ll personally suggest you to start your trip from Shimla and end at Manali by completing a circuit through spiti valley.
Shimla – Rampur Bushar – Reckong Peo – Nako – Tabo – Kaza – Kunzum Pass – Rohtang Pass – Manali
The Kaza Manali route remains closed for a significant time of the year so do confirm it before planning to complete the circuit. It generally opens before mid- June, but is basically unpredictable.