A Mountain Paradise
Ensconced between the mighty Karakoram and Great Himalayan ranges, Ladakh was once an important trade route between Central Asia and Punjab. The area is filled with stunning landscapes and its remote location has ensured a unique cultural community. Nurla is within Leh district and is located at a lower altitude than Leh town, making it a good base to acclimatize to this land of high-passes. The Apricot Tree is tucked away on the outskirts of Nurla village and is a ninety minute drive from Leh airport. Located just off the Leh-Srinagar highway and perched on a cliff overlooking the Indus river, the hotel offers sounds and views of the river, the wonderful mountain air and is set amidst apricot and apple trees.
The remote location allows one to slow down and take in the beautiful landscape that Ladakh is famous for. Wangchuk’s love for the region is evident all across the hotel – right from the staff to the attention to detail in the spaces within. The stories he regales you with, his knowledge...
The remote location allows one to slow down and take in the beautiful landscape that Ladakh is famous for. Wangchuk’s love for the region is evident all across the hotel – right from the staff to the attention to detail in the spaces within. The stories he regales you with, his knowledge of the place, .. having grown up in the area, his old family house is right across from the hotel.
Know Your Host
Wangchuk Tsering Fargo grew up in the village of Nurla like generations before him amidst fields of barley and apricot orchards and grazing livestock. His grandfather Tsering Chospel occasionally worked as a guide to intrepid travellers to Ladakh in the 1930-40s. Wangchuk grew up listening to those...
Wangchuk Tsering Fargo grew up in the village of Nurla like generations before him amidst fields of barley and apricot orchards and grazing livestock. His grandfather Tsering Chospel occasionally worked as a guide to intrepid travellers to Ladakh in the 1930-40s. Wangchuk grew up listening to those fascinating stories and after Ladakh was opened up to tourists, he set up Fargo Travels in 1978, that continues to be one of the oldest travel companies in Ladakh.
The Apricot Tree is mindfully designed imbibing contemporary facilities while showcasing traditional Ladakhi architecture and painting styles. Woodwork, calming colour schemes, photographs from the region by the well-known Czech photographer Jaroslav Poncar, and contemporary art by emerging Ladakhi artists feature across the hotel. The pebbled central courtyard serves as the meeting point for guests to share stories after a day of sightseeing around a bonfire and drinks, and the famed Ladakhi night sky. The simple yet aesthetic rooms feature balconies overlooking the Indus and a short path from the hotel takes you to the banks of the river.
If you’re lucky you will spot ridaks (deer) coming to drink on the opposite bank of the river, or catch a glimpse of the Golden oriole who makes her nest in the woods below the hotel.
Although close to a major highway, the remote location ensures peace and quiet.
At Apricot Tree, the accommodation is spread over two floors and 16 of the 21 rooms overlook the river Indus with the majestic mountains as a backdrop. The rooms are spacious and simplistic in their traditional décor and come with a balcony or sit out. The attached bathrooms come with modern amenities and comforts.
Offering seasonal produce from their organic garden, the cuisine at the river facing restaurant is Ladakhi, Indian and Chinese. And if you are lucky to be at The Apricot Tree at the right time, in August, fresh apricots straight from the trees are a must-have.
The location of Apricot Tree makes it an ideal base to explore some of the oldest monasteries in Ladakh – Alchi, Sumdo and Mangyu, as well as the Avalokiteshvara statue at Mulbeck and petroglyphs at Domkhar. Or attend the festivals at Lamayuru Monastery which usually falls in June or the one at Tserkarmo in Tingmosgang in July or August. Take walks around the area and hikes with local guides to nearby villages, or go birding. Treks and hikes can be organised with several routes that begin or end from this area. Weather permitting, white water rafting on the Indus is possible too.
Cultural and local music programs can also be organised at the hotel. Dancers and musicians in the area can be invited to perform for the guests.
For those who would enjoy idyllic times at the hotel, wander through the vegetable garden or the apricot orchard, listen to stories about the region from Wangchuk himself, enjoy picnic lunches on one of the many trails, learn about local food as well as prepare butter tea or momos, or take yoga and meditation classes.
With its lower altitude and proximity to Leh, Apricot Tree is a good starting point to discover Ladakh while you acclimatise to the altitude. The remote location also makes for a perfect getaway.
The Apricot Tree is operational during summer from May to September.
The Apricot Tree has infused traditional Ladakhi architectural practices and building materials in the hotel to showcase the region. The restaurant uses ingredients from the organic garden for dishes served. He also sources from local farmers in the area.
Water at the hotel comes straight from a glacial stream, it’s clear and sparkling. The garbage is segregated and wet garbage is given to local cows in the area to eat. The Apricot Tree is in the process of eliminating single use plastic.
Elderly, children and people with special needs are welcome at the hotel. The top floor of the hotel is wheel chair friendly if the guest is booked into a room on the upper floor – they have easy access to the restaurant and courtyard.
The Apricot Tree is one of the few hotels in Ladakh that showcases the work of local contemporary established and emerging artists – painters, sculptors, ceramic artists, etc… their work is showcased throughout the hotel. Some of them have also been invited to create specific art works for the hotel. In this the Apricot Tree works closely with a local arts organisation, the Ladakh Arts and Media Organisation (LAMO).
by Pahari on 09/30/2021
The property is sandwiched between the Indus River and the highway. While the entrance area has fruit trees and an organic garden, it is used as a parking place for vehicles and tends to get...
by atulkhosla on 09/21/2021
Perched on the banks of River Indus the resort is about 80 Kms from Leh Airport in Nurla. Ideal place for anyone to acclimatise Ladhak’s rarified atmosphere.. the Hotel has Apricots, Apples , Pears...
by NSara85 on 06/14/2020
I booked a room for 2 nights in July. Booking was done in January. Because of the covid-19, I won’t be able to travel to Ladakh. As per terms and conditions of the hotel, I’m supposed to be refunded...