himachal pradesh,  Travel

Shimla to Kalpa – The day one of Spiti trip

Spiti valley has finally started getting the attention that it deserves. A lot of people are now travelling to Spiti valley nowadays. There are 2 ways to reach Spiti valley. First route is via ManaliRohtang- batal and the second route is via ShimlaRampur. If you travel to Spiti via Shimla Rampur, then the first day of your journey should be to reach Kalpa from Shimla. Kalpa will act as Day 1 halt and also you’ll be able to witness the beauty of kalpa. Shimla to Kalpa distance is 270 Km, which takes around 8-9 hours to travel. So it makes sense to halt here on day 1 of your spiti trip

Shimla to Kalpa road history

The road from Shimla to Kalpa is part of the Hindustan Tibet Road, the NH5. This road was built during the British era by the then Vice Roy, Lord Dalhousie to establish the trade route with Tibet. The road not only fulfilled the need to trade routes but also met various other needs of the Britishers. The Hindustan Tibet road starts from Kalka and culminates at the Indo-Tibet border at Shipki La. Presently, the road is part of NH5.

Shimla to Narkanda

First thing I would suggest is to start early. The Shimla to Kalpa distance is 270 Km. This is a long journey with full of scenic beauty. This scenic beauty which forces you to stop now and then to behold the beauty of the landscapes. Our first major pitstop on the road trip was Narkanda, the popular tourist destination, which needs no introduction.

The Shimla Narkanda road trip is an amazing journey, you will be able to see apple orchards, lush green forests along your way and some amazing valley views. I’m sure you’ll be stopping at multiple locations to look at the scenic beauty that comes along the way. Don’t forget to pitstop at Shilaroo, which is having an beautiful hockey stadium.

Lunch Time at Narkanda – Guptajee’s

Narkanda to Rampur

After having an amazing lunch at the famous Gupta jee’s at Narkanda we start our descent towards Rampur. The road passes through dense deodar jungle which is an incredible sight to see. We also get to see amazing view of the Kotgarh region, which is one of the first few places in the Himachal where the apple plantation started. Basically, this area is a Sutlej watershed area. We descend down this Sutlej watershed area to reach Kingal. From Kingal onwards we travel along the Sutlej river till Rampur. The road is well maintained and scenic as well.

Rampur to Kalpa

Once you cross Rampur, you’ll start seeing snow-covered mountains, the scenic beauty continues but there are some additions, you’ll come across some waterfalls on the way and the roads also become narrow at some points. Around 40 Kms from Rampur, we come across a beautiful patch of road called Tranda Dhank. The road is carved out of big mountain rocks, it’s almost like a tunnel except that, one side is open to a deep gorge, an amazing sight to see indeed. This road also featured in Deadliest roads on History TV18. The drive uphill Kalpa is an amazing experience overall.

Tranda Dhank NH5 – trip to kalpa
Shimla to Kalpa distance
shimla to kalpa road trip

The beautiful road journey continued after crossing Tranda Dhank, Kalpa is 60 Kms away from Tranda Dhank. On the way we come across some hydel projects as well. Once you are at Kalpa, you’ll get multiple options to stay. There is an amazing resort by Himachal Tourism and pretty amazing private properties to stay. Our stay was at a private property, which is right in front of the Kinner Kailash mountain and provides an amazing view of the snow-covered Kinner Kailash peak. I would recommend to book a hotel overlooking the Kinner Kailash peak, as the view is really good. More of that coming in next blog post

Shimla to kalpa road condition

Recently, there was huge landslide at Nigulsari between Kalpa to shimla road, due to which some part of the road is very risky otherwise the shimla to kalpa road is smooth. The condition of the road between Shimla and Narkanda is really good. It’ll take aprox. 2.5 hour to travel from Shimla to narkanda if you stop for sightseeing in between. The condition of the road between Narkanda and Rampur is good. It’ll take aprox. 2 hours to cover this distance of 60 KMs.

shimla to kalpa bus

The HRTC runs ordinary buses as well as deluxe buses on Shimla to Kalpa route. Private bus operator also runs a bus service from Solan to Kalpa. You can also reach Kapla by road using your private cab from shimla.

Shimla to kalpa distance

Shimla to Kalpa distance is about 270 Km

Spiti Valley itinerary – How to plan


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