In Sangla Valley

Bridge Construction

[Moni] The plan was to drive past Sangla to the end of the Valley and stay shortly before Chitkul, an ancient rural village. But when we arrived in Sangla, there was no chance to get further: Just this day, the new bridge was being delivered and half of the village people were busy constucting the fundament.

Gypsy crossing

So we were forced to find a place for the night, and there was only one that looked suitable for camping- on the other side of the river, only reachable by a little hanging bridge over a waterfall. We decided first to ask if it was strong enough for the car, and for the second time this day nobody in the car spoke.

In the night, there was an enormous thunderstorm in the valley. We were in our tents, watching the lightnings above us and listening to the thunders with slight uneasyness.


[Hynek] Finally we get out of our tents after the first night of camping! It was raining the whole night and the grass is wet. Some of us hate it! Everything is wet, uncomfortable and far away from a dry place and a hot Indian chai. Some of us love it! Calmness around us. Sangla on the opposite side of the river. No noise of civilisation. - Still all enjoy the breakfast looking forward to visit Kamru the old village above Sangla.


Kamru, with houses so beautiful that one believes to be in a different age when accommodations were constructed with a very subtle sense of beauty and with great care for detail. The people receive us well, the children even better!

In Kamru

Felix, Aurelie, Alex and I have the chance to assist a ritual which takes place 11 days after a person has died in the village: The whole village meets at the village place around the temple and each family that can afford it distributes chappatis, candies, nuts, and ghee. We accept humbly the first offerings happy to be welcomed so warmly among people that do not know us. But the stream of food-offerings doesn't stop! Procession_H2.jpg More and more chappatis, more and more ghee, which Felix and I try even though our noses are not used to this penetrating smell - it's awful! We will not be able to eat that! But we accept more and more offerings, now with full joy and laughter for our hands are piled up with chappatis and our pockets full of candy and we wonder where to put the offerings of the people that are distributing more offerings.


Chitkul reminds me of these villages far remote from great economic activity and where adults are dreaming of leaving for more excitement and easier life. A calm and beautiful village where one finds a lot of old people, that observe sceptically the intruding tourists, and a lot of kids that look forward to meet outsiders for there is not much change otherwise.


We spend the afternoon there! The sun is behind clouds and from time to time it rains lightly.

Looking to China

It is cold and windy! It must be a hard to survive a winter up here! The austerity is beautiful and seducing.

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