Traveling on a budget is really challenging and what if I say I did a road trip to Kinnaur Valley under 8k!
I have summarized how it feels when you travel on a budget!
It just feels like a plate full of yum dishes in front of the eyes and hands are tied in a rope and that too when hungry.
Yeah, appreciate yourself and your efforts and I appreciate you too.
I did a Delhi to Kinnaur road trip under a budget of 8k for 5 days and it was a special one because this was a gift to myself on the birthday.
My Delhi to Kinnaur tour is something that I wanted to do from a long time and just a few days before my birthday ( in case of 10th April ) made a plan that I will do Kinnaur Valley Tour and make this memorable.
Also, I was very fascinated by the movie “Highway” and the picturization stuck in my mind that insisted me to make a Kinnaur Trip plan.
Hence, I thought that I will do a road trip to Kinnaur valley on a budget and save some money for future travels also.
And guess what, yeah you guessed it right and I did it.
Table of Contents
Where is Kinnaur
Kinnaur Valley is in Himachal Pradesh and the Kinnaur Kailash ( Adobe of Shiva ) can be clearly seen from here.
Kinnaur is among the twelve administrative districts of Himachal Pradesh.
Lahaul and Spiti
In my Kinnaur road trip, I have covered Kalpa Valley, Reckong Peo, and Chitkul Valley. Hence, I crossed Sangla and Rakcham too but for a very small period.
Kinnaur Road is among the deadliest roads in the world.
Because of the risk involved and one can also say it’s the one-way road on most of the journey and must do calculations on how the other vehicle will pass by. This is extremely preferred to the experienced drivers and especially those who drove on mountains several times before driving on the Kinnaur road.
The Volvo Bus fare would be around Rs.700 – Rs.800.
The Ordinary Bus fare would be around Rs. 400 – Rs.500
Shimla to Kinnaur Bus Fare
Bus fare from Shimla to Kinnaur/ Reckong Peo (Headquarter of Kinnaur district) is Rs.417 (subject to change).
Considering this part – Rs.2200 (From Delhi to Kinnaur and Return from Kinnaur to Delhi) by Bus for one person.
By Personal Vehicle
The route will be the same. Again, safety measures must be taken.
One of the benefits and it’s an important one; the much-needed interval that one gets during the journey because the bus will be going to stop where it meant to be stopped.
This is what I think an important part of a long journey or say during the Kinnaur Valley Tour.
This part is about fuel expenses and the distance from Delhi to Kinnaur is about 600 km.
(Also you can’t drive continuously and rest is much needed)
For e.x– An early morning start from Delhi and a night stay at Shimla or Rampur which is another 126km would be a good fit. An early morning starts the next day and you can comfortably enter Kinnaur in the afternoon.
* It’s safe but needs to be avoided in the monsoon because landslides are prone to happen in this region. So, it’s better to be on a safer side.
2nd – Which place you will be used as a Hub in your Trip to Kinnaur?
Okay, it’s ideal to stay at the destination you are arriving itself.
For e.x– in your Kinnaur trip plan – you will be arriving first at Kalpa which means a stay at Kalpa then next you will be heading towards Sangla means a stay at Sangla and Chitkul means a stay at Chitkul.
I don’t want you to do a mistake as I did.
What I did is; my hub is at Kalpa Valley and I continued to keep my hub the same during my Trip to Kinnaur.
I have a plan of Chitkul Valley that means a stay in Chitkul is a must because the very first bus will drop in the afternoon. So, I continued to use my Hub at Kalpa and stayed for a night in Chitkul. So, paying on both the occasions (I covered up in food and travel).
You got this, now you can do Kinnaur Tour very easily under 8k.
A homestay would cost anywhere around Rs. 600 – Rs. 700 on an average for a night (At any destination you are arriving).
This part can be covered under Rs. 3000 for 4 nights.
3rd – How you are going to travel from one place to another?
By foot, if you take my suggestion.
For Ex – In touring Kalpa Valley and Reckong Peo – By foot it can be covered very easily.
Don’t take taxis if you want your road trip to Kinnaur to be done under a certain budget. Taxi prices are high. It’s like Rs. 200 from Reckong Peo to Kalpa which by bus is Rs. 15 – Rs. 20.
By Bus for long distances like Kalpa Valley to Chitkul Valley.
Firstly from Kalpa, you have to reach Reckong Peo, take a morning bus to Chitkul Valley.
Bus Fare from Reckong Peo to Chitkul
The fare from Reckong Peo to Chitkul would cost around – Rs.100 – Rs.110.
If Dividing Journey into Sangla and Chitkul separately.
Bus Fare from Reckong Peo to Sangla – Rs.70 – Rs. 72
Bus Fare from Sangla to Chitkul – Rs. 40
This part of in and around Kinnaur Valley can be done under Rs.300 for a person.
4th – Where you can eat?
All the food lovers.
Don’t forget you are doing Kinnaur Tour on a Budget.
Every time you forget.
There can’t be any best option apart from eating in a “Dhaba”. I personally feel Dhabas are underrated and Restaurants are overrated, although doesn’t apply on all.
A normal thali would cost around Rs. 150 – Rs. 200 and a sandwich/omelet would fit for a healthy breakfast.
Considering this part of Rs. 1500 – Rs. 1700 for 4 days for a person keeping you eat less than for Rs.200 at two times.
Assuming you booked for a homestay and the cost of food is involved in your stay only.
For e.x- the cost of Homestay is Rs. 600 for a night and some make meals involved in that cost only. So, you don’t have to spend extra bucks and if it’s not involved “Dhaba” is always an open option for you.
In my case, I got three times the meal involved in my stay only of Rs. 1000
Bang on if you get a homestay with around Rs.600 with meals involved.
i.e. Where to Eat part concludes at Rs. 1700 – Rs. 1900 for 4 days for a person.
The budget tally now reaches at Rs. 7200 – Rs. 7400.
And we are on the last part too, excited?
Yeah, I got you.
5th – What all places you can see in your 5 days Kinnaur Valley Tour?
You can also go to Nako, Tabo if time permits for another 2-3 days making it a trip of 7-8 days.
And Spiti too. Who doesn’t want to see Spiti especially winter Spiti?
Okay, it’s altogether a different topic to cover.
Therefore all the four points are referring to this part only –
How to reach
Which place to use as a Hub.
How to Travel from one place to another.
Where to eat.
The conclusion here arises that road trip from Delhi to Kinnaur valley on a budget proved to be in my top list budget trips.
Hence, it concludes that a budget trip to Kinnaur of Rs. 7200 – Rs. 7400 can be done if planned accordingly. I did at slightly high Rs. 7600 – Rs. 7700 because of the Hub part if you have read in the second point.
Do let me know if you have anything to ask in the comments below or can contact me on Facebook and Instagram as well.