It took us a grand total of one week to get from Vancouver to Leh, India. Our plans were to trek the heck out of the Himalayas, but we needed some time to plan, acclimatize, and recover. It turns out that driving over multiple passes over 5000 m tall without acclimatizing isn’t a good idea. Our time in Leh wasn’t wasted though. We dragged ourselves out of bed to go check out some of the nearby monasteries and palaces. We even got to experience some Ladakhi hip hop.
Every monastery we went to was full of vegetable oil stashes, and bottles were scattered amongst the other offerings at statues. It makes sense. I guess the oil lanterns need a good deal of fuel.
My favourite part of the trip to the monasteries around Leh was the trek up to the ruins of Shey Palace. We were pretty tired at this point (I was on my second day with no food) so it was a hard scramble, but totally worth it. Part of Shey Palace has been maintained, but we skipped that part.