Ladakh Inner Line Permits Explained

Inner Line Permit Explained.

Once you get to Leh, You think you have done all the hard work and now its time to see all those places you had been hearing about all these years. Places like Nubra Valley, Hundar, Turtuk, Pangong Tso, Tso Moriri, Khardungla Pass is on every person’s wish list.

After reaching  Leh, you were told you need to get Inner Line Permits, which sounded a little bureaucratic, and in India the easy way out of all bureaucracy is to find an agent and get your work done.


The DM office in Leh has issued a circular which mentions that starting 1 May 2014 Indian Nationals DO NOT need any inner line permits for more popular spots in Leh – Ladakh.

The following restricted places have been exempted:

  • Dah, Hanu Villages
  • Pangong Tso
  • Man, Merak
  • Tso Moriri
  • Nyoma
  • Loma Bend
  • Khardung La
  • Nubra Valley (up to Panamik), Turtuk
  • Tyakshi, Digger La, Tangyar (for trekking only)

Any form of identification like driver’s license, Passport, Aadhar card, Voter Id Card will suffice now at the Army Checkposts.

This permit used to be a trouble at times when the DM office would be closed at short notice and people would be stuck in Leh for 2- 3 days.


However if you have more time and wish to venture into the not so popular tourist destinations, you will still need an Inner Line Permit and the procedure to get it is simple.

1. Head to the DM Office – On your way to the DM office, get a copy of the Inner Line Permit from any of the Xerox shops, there are a few behind the office which have the forms.

2. Fill in the details:  They expect you to provide a detailed itinerary along with dates including all major villages that you will be visiting in each area.

3. Identification Proof : Provide a copy of an Id and address proof ( Aadhar Card, Driver’s License, Passport, Voter Id Card – Carry 2-3 Copies). If you are not carrying the original with you, please have attested copies.

4. Fees : The fees for the permits is Rs. 20 per person per day and a Rs. 10 donation towards Red Cross. ( The day we went to get our permits sorted, there was a strike in the DM office and only the DM was working and he did not charge us anything for issuing the permits).

5. Cover Letter : Like it happens in all government offices, you will need to write a cover letter requesting the DM to issue you the Inner Line Permit.

6. Processing Times : On a lucky day, you can get your permit in one visit or you may have to come back again in a couple of hours to collect it either the same day or the next one.

Once you get your permits, you are ready to hit the road.

This is what a permit looks like

Empty Rucksack Travelers inner line permit

About Empty Ruck Sack

Empty Rucksack travelers is an attempt to bring together many wonderful stories of career breaks, long term vacations and great travel destinations together at one place. The posts authored by Empty Rucksack Travelers are put together by Vikram and Ishwinder, an Indian couple out on a long term travel to find that perfect place in the world where they may want to stay forever.

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