The thunderous VROOOOM! echoes through the Indian Himalayas as engines roar and mountain passes stretch endlessly. It is a realm serving masculine – chains, panniers, leather boots, bandanas, and biceps, each element perfectly in place. As men traverse these winding high passes, leaving behind clouds of dust and dynamic images, many of us cannot help but be in awe.

Yet, the destination they aim for is a source of pride. From Sikkim to Leh Ladakh Motorcycle Trip, a series of alluring mountain getaways sparks excitement among riders. Adventure speeds through their veins, and they savour every moment of their journeys with pride.

Top Mountain Passes in India for Your Biking Adventure

Glide through these motorable mountain passes awaiting you in the Indian Himalayas and uncover what makes Motorcycle tours in India unique from the rest of the world. 

1. Marsimik-La - 5679.6 meters

Ladakh, known as the land of passes, boasts the highest mountain passes in the Indian Himalayas, ranging from the famous to the lesser-known. A recent addition to this remarkable landscape is Marsimik La, standing tall at approximately 5679 meters. This pass, situated northeast of Khardung La, challenges the supremacy of Khardung La (the acknowledged king of passes). 

Unlike other Motorcycle Adventure Tours, Marsimik La poses a significant challenge, primarily reserved for Army logistics. Crossing this territory is no easy feat, even for seasoned bike riders. Rough patches, sandy tracks, and steep inclines provide both the rider and the bike with a challenging, rock-and-roll experience. The expedition often leaves riders thoroughly drained, so you have to prepare yourself physically as well as mentally. It is the go-getting spirit that you need above all else to conquer the Marsimik La. 

2. Dungri La/Mana Pass - 5608 metres

Nestled in the rugged expanse of the Himalayan Range in Uttarakhand, Mana Pass, also known as Dungri La, sets an example among its counterparts. Forget about barren landscapes and shaky rides; an expedition to Mana Pass offers awe-inspiring views of the breathtaking scenery. Did it spark something in your eyes? 

You must be a nature lover. In this case, get in touch with one of the most reliable Tour Operators in IndiaWhy? Because as a nature lover, you deserve to enjoy it to the fullest and their top-notch service will let you achieve this unforgettable experience at a lost cost. 

Hey, pause your biking Motorcycle Tours plan because Mana Pass is off-limits for civilians. Reserved exclusively for the Army and ITBP, it serves as a crucial route for transporting supplies to border posts. Did it upset you? Do not worry. Recently, an 11-member team of Free Soul Riders successfully made it to the pass from Delhi via Rudraprayag – Badrinath. This pass treats visitors to captivating views of Chaukhamba, a mountain summit in the Garhwal Himalayan Range. En route, drivers can capture the beauty of Deotal Lake.

 3. Khardung La - 5,359 metres

Khardung La is located north of Leh on the Ladakh Range. While it is a known fact that every year, numerous passionate bikers achieve their dream of conquering the pass, known as the Highest Motorable Road in world, there is a new development on the horizon. The authority of this reigning king is now being challenged. Well, the thrill and excitement that riders experience on this expedition remain undeniable. 

The journey to Khardung La typically begins from Manali and is considered one of the most challenging Himalayan ride. Endless stretches of barren landscapes, small settlements, winding rivers, and weary muscles and engines become your companions on this adventure. The test of your patience does not end there. This motorbike tour takes you through five other notable mountain passes of the Himalayas (Rohtang, Baralacha, Nakila, Lachung, and Tanglang La passes), a hair-raising group of loops (Gata Loops), and, of course, freezing cold. 

The Gata Loops will elevate you to a height of 4,664 meters from 4,198 meters within a distance of just 13 km. Along the way, other significant stops include Gondla, Keylong, Sarchu, Pang, Upshi, and Leh.

4. Chang La - 5,320 metres

Experience a journey filled with an overdose of natural beauty. You will traverse a long stretch of narrow yet well-built road that seamlessly transitions from smooth to bumpy, and it leads to Chang La—an expanse marked by vast lakes and highlands. As you follow the same route taken for Khardung La, passing through small settlements and encountering both cheers and challenges, you will reach Karu, the junction point where the routes diverge. Bikers can explore Hemis Monastery, situated on the left turn at Karu, along with the Buddhist Gompa Chemrey and the nearby settlement of Sakti Village. 

Approaching Chang La, you will notice a unique ambience—a world of silence. Unlike many mountain passes in Ladakh known for their fierce natural elements, the Chang La expedition, standing at an elevation of 5,320 meters, is relatively less challenging for both riders and their machines. Although the pass is just a few meters away from Pangong Lake, the short journey to the lake can leave you completely spellbound and out of gear. 

5. Kunzum Pass - 4,551 metres

A drive to Kunzum Pass in the high altitudes of Himachal Pradesh promises every biker a memorable journey. During your ride, you will be treated to panoramic views of the Bara-Sigri Glacier, the second-longest glacier. Soak in the rustic charm of Losar, the first inhabited village in Spiti Valley. At the summit, there is a temple dedicated to Goddess Kunzum. On the return journey, bikers can opt for a night stay at the only tented rest house in Batal. This completes the adventure with a touch of tranquillity. 

6. Nathu La - 4,328 metres  

When discussing the top motorable mountain passes, the 'Land of Lepchas and Bhutias' – Sikkim – cannot be omitted. Renowned for its natural beauty and cultural heritage, Sikkim never fails to captivate adventure seekers with its elevated location and proximity to Tibet and China. One pass that stands out is Nathu La, situated approximately 56 km from Gangtok. While it may seem like a relatively easy expedition, the true charm lies in the en-route beauty. 

Panoramic views of surrounding alpine flora and mountains, coupled with freezing temperatures and foggy weather, will captivate your attention entirely. Tsongo Lake, situated along the way to Nathu La, is a visual spectacle. On clear days, visitors can also catch a glimpse of Chumbi Valley. Although the road is metalled, it may not be in the best shape, so prepare yourself for a jerky ride. 

7. Sela Pass - 4,175.8 metres

In a country like India, where highways wind through rivers, fields, valleys, and mountains, the true essence lies in the memories of the journey. This holds particularly true for the mountain passes of the Himalayan Range, each offering every visitor a fascinating story to share. Among them, Se La, commonly known as Sela Pass, stands out as a high-altitude pass that gives motorbikers a reason to celebrate their journeys. 

The brown, barren mountains of Se La are often cloaked in snow for a long time in a year, creating a stark but beautiful landscape. Despite the less vegetation, a bike expedition to the pass is jam-packed with adventurous memories. Blue, clear lakes dot the route, while clouds weave a dramatic scene over the mountainous horizon. The countless hairpin bends provide a thrilling test, and the surrounding landscape is truly eye-catching. For those seeking more exploration, Sela Lake and Jang Waterfall, located close to the pass, offer additional attractions. 

8. Manali Rohtang Pass - 3,978 metres

Any passionate biker is well aware of this route. Today, the Manali-Leh highway is the most traversed route to Ladakh. What adds an extra dose of thrill for bikers is the dramatic terrain that characterizes this pass. The road surface varies wildly, ranging from smooth blacktop to potholes of varying depths, dotted with glacial streams. Spanning a journey of 485 km, tackling this pass can consume anywhere from 17 to 30 hours of driving. The rugged beauty and challenging conditions make this highway an iconic and adventurous route for those seeking an unforgettable biking experience. 


Well, it is no surprise that many urban dwellers like Delhiites have a passion for road trips, especially with the mountains just a few hours away. The rugged roads, snow-capped peaks, and vast, untouched landscapes possess a captivating beauty that may not be everyone's cup of tea. For those who appreciate the allure of high-altitude terrains, we have put together a list above that deserve a spot on your travel bucket list.

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