Chandertaal Lake

This is the source of the river Chandra. According to some believers, this is the spot from where the god Indra’s chariot took the eldest Pandava brother, Yudhishtra to ‘swarga’ (heaven) in his mortal form.

Colourful tents under the blue sky,around the crystal clear waters of the Chandratal lake is a sight. Reflections of snow-topped high mountains in the lake are simply enchanting.

The mountains peaks with snow caps and slopes around the valley rise up to 3000 meters to 6300 meters. The mountain ranges are called Moulkila and Chandrabhaga which challenge mountaineers.

The Chandratal lake, once a halting place for traders who went to Spiti and the Kulu valley from Tibet and Ladakh attracts a large number of adventure lovers.

The lake in Lahaul and Spiti district is situated at an altitude of 4270 meters. It lies between a low ridge and the main Kunzum range. This lake is also known as Moon Lake.

The lake is 1.5 km long and .75 km wide. A circular trek can be attempted from both Batal on the Manali-Kaza road and the Baralacha pass on the Manali-Leh Highway. Its meadows nestle many wild flowers.

With opening of the Manali-Leh road to foreign visitors in 1989, the number of trekkers for the Batal-Chandratal Lake-Baralacha Pass trek and vice versa has increased .Now a trek is possible up to the Baralacha Pass and from there tourists can board a vehicle to Leh or travel up to the Baralacha Pass by a vehicle from Leh and trek down to Batal.

But with the opening of Spiti and Kinnaur inner line area to foreigners in 1992, trekkers can complete a full circuit of the cold desert areas of the tribal belt.

From June to September a large number of tourists visit the lake. This is also the time when shepherds from Kangra, Mandi and Kulu can be seen with their herds of sheep at Chandra pastures.

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An IT professional for 17 years, based in the US since the last 12 years. Founded NGO My Himachal and then Himachal Media Pvt. Ltd.. A Himachali forever. Always trying to bring together people whose hearts beat for the state.

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  1. says: Anonymous

    I was planning a trip from Manali-Leh by nmy own vehicle and as a detour wanted to visit Chandertaal. I have a few queries.
    1. How far is chandertaal from the manali-leh road. What would be best, reaching chandertaal from Batal or thru baralacha pass.
    2. Is it possible to spend nite there. Where do u get to stay, food ?

  2. I think below links would help you!
    Batal is supposed to be better and spending night is always in tented accomodation, if you are carring yours then fine otherwise you need to have it arranged from some tour operator, but they usually operate full tour!

    BARALACHA LA(4883 m): It is about 73 kms. from Keylong on Manali Leh road. The name means pass with cross roads on summit (roads from Ladakh, Spiti and Lahaul join at the top). There is no road yet from Spiti. Only a path exists. This is also the point of origin of Chandra, Bhaga and, Yunam rivers. They flow to three different directions through the Chandra, Bhaga and Lingti valleys.

    Batal-Chandra Tal: Walking Time 6-7 hrs. It takes a day to reach Batal 3950m from Manali. Pir Panjal and Baralacha La merges at Kunzum La and Batal is nestled in it’s footsteps. Situated at 4250m Chandra Tal is a magical experience for many.

    1. says: Prakash

      Dear Mr. Avnish Katoch,
      Very informative artcle. We are planning “Batal – Chandratal – Topko Gongma – Topko Yongma – Baralacha La ” @ 15 July 2009. Any suggestions?

  3. says: Prakash

    “A Trip to Chandertal” by Indu Prasad is really a great experience. When was this undertaken (July 2004 ??) ? Is there any article for the trek from Chandratal – Topko Gongma – Topko Yongma – Baralacha La?

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