Top 10 Coldest Places to Visit in India, Extreme Winter Chill Destinations

Top 10 Coldest Places to Visit in India:- India, often associated with sweltering summers and humid monsoons, might not be the first destination that comes to mind when seeking chilly climates. However, nestled within its diverse landscapes are pockets of icy wonderlands that beckon travelers seeking respite from the heat or simply craving a brush with extreme winter chill. From snow-capped peaks to frost-covered plains, here are the top 10 coldest places to visit in India, promising an unforgettable experience amidst sub-zero temperatures.

Top 10 Coldest Places to Visit

India’s geography presents a breathtaking diversity, spanning from the arid deserts of the west to the lush rain-soaked hills of the east, from the inviting beaches of the south to the snow-capped peaks of the north. It’s the most populous country globally, yet within its borders lie regions where survival for a lone individual is nearly impossible. These are places where the mere act of breathing can turn your breath into ice crystals, where your skin can freeze within minutes of exposure, and where the biting cold and scorching sun coexist, rendering conventional thermometers useless. Welcome to the coldest corners of India, where bundling up and a steaming cup of coffee are essential companions for venturing into these bone-chilling landscapes.

Top 10 Coldest Places to Visit in India

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Coldest Places to Visit in India Overview

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List of Top 10 Coldest Places to Visit from India

2.Siachen Glacier-50°C
3.Sela Pass, Tawang-15°C
4.Lachen and Thangu Valley, North Sikkim-10°C
5.Leh Ladakh-35°C
6.Munisiyari, Uttarakhand-10°C
7.Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh-30°C
8.Sonamarg, Jammu & Kashmir-6°C
9.Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir-30°C
10.Rohtang Pass, Manali-5°C

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  • Altitude: 3300m
  • Minimum Temperature: -45°C
  • Average Temperature: -45 to 35°C
  • Location: Kargil, Ladakh
  • Best Time to Visit: June to September

Dras Valley holds the title of the coldest place in India, nestled within the Kargil district of the Ladakh Union Territory. Positioned at an elevation of 10,990 feet above sea level, it’s ensconced by the formidable Himalayan peaks, approximately 60 kilometers from Kargil town. The valley boasts picturesque rivers, breathtaking landscapes, and captivating vistas.


The region’s extreme climatic conditions and severe temperatures render Dras Valley nearly uninhabitable during winters. Snowfall blankets the area for most of the season, with temperatures plummeting to as low as -45°C. The valley remains veiled in ice for much of the year, providing an ideal playground for winter sports enthusiasts, who indulge in activities like snowboarding, ice skating, and skiing. Despite the harsh winters, the resilient locals of Dras Valley persist with traditional methods to cope with the cold. Moreover, the region is renowned for its trekking routes, attracting adventure enthusiasts worldwide. Notably, the Amarnath Yatra trek holds profound spiritual and religious significance, adding to the valley’s allure.

Siachen Glacier

  • Altitude: 5400m
  • Minimum Temperature: -50°C
  • Average Temperature: -50 to -10°C
  • Location: Karakoram, Ladakh
  • Best Time to Visit: May to September

Siachen Glacier holds the distinction of being the second coldest location in India, nestled within the Karakoram range of Ladakh. Reaching an altitude of approximately 20,000 feet above sea level, it’s renowned as the world’s highest battleground. Extending over a vast expanse of around 76 kilometers, this glacier is surrounded by towering peaks adorned with snow caps. Situated in an inhospitable and remote region, Siachen Glacier is accessible solely by air. As a part of the Himalayas and the largest glacier within the Karakoram range, it serves as the source for rivers like Nubra and Shyok. Snow and ice from the neighboring mountains contribute to its perpetual accumulation.

Siachen Glacier

The harsh winters in this area are characterized by extreme temperatures plummeting to as low as -50°C, compounded by rough climatic conditions. Siachen is particularly susceptible to blizzards and avalanches, rendering it perilous for habitation and work. Despite the adversities, its strategic significance prompts a permanent presence of the Indian army, tasked with safeguarding this vital terrain.

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Sela Pass, Tawang

  • Elevation: 4,170m
  • Minimum Temperature: -15°C
  • Average Temperature: -15 to 20°C
  • Location: Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh
  • Best Time to Visit: March to May and October-November

Sela Pass, nestled in the ethereal landscape of Arunachal Pradesh in northeastern India, resides within the Tawang district, earning its place among India’s coldest destinations. Perched at an altitude of approximately 13,700 feet above sea level, it stands as a prominent tourist attraction and a haven for adventure enthusiasts. Serving as the gateway to Tawang, a popular tourist destination in Arunachal Pradesh, Sela Pass boasts breathtaking vistas of snow-capped Himalayan peaks, verdant valleys, and frozen lakes.

Sela Pass, Tawang

This pristine locale harbors a rich biodiversity, housing endangered species like the Red panda, Black bear, and Musk deer amidst its surroundings. Despite its allure, the journey to Sela Pass presents formidable challenges, including severe cold, treacherous landslides, and avalanche-prone paths. Nevertheless, nature lovers and adventurers are drawn to Sela Pass, enticed by its rugged beauty and renowned trekking routes, such as the trek to Tawang.

Lachen and Thangu Valley, North Sikkim

  • Elevation: 3962m
  • Minimum Temperature: -20°C
  • Average Temperature: -20 to 10°C
  • Location: Mangan, North Sikkim
  • Best Time to Visit: May and June

Thangu Valley, situated in the picturesque Mangan district of Sikkim, beckons travelers with its serene beauty and tranquil landscapes. Located 30 kilometers north of Lachen, it lies nestled in the northern reaches of Sikkim at an elevation of approximately 3962 meters above sea level. Enveloped in snow for much of the year, this valley boasts alpine meadows nourished by the majestic River Teesta.

Lachen and Thangu Valley

The allure of Thangu Valley lies in its scenic vistas, characterized by snow-capped peaks and verdant valleys. Thangu Village welcomes tourists with warmth and offers delectable local cuisine. The star attraction of this valley is Gurudongmar Lake, drawing millions of visitors annually. Popular activities in the area include short treks to destinations like Green Lake, Chopta Valley, and Muguthang, adding to the valley’s charm as a nature lover’s paradise.

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Leh Ladakh

  • Elevation: 3500m
  • Minimum Temperature: -35°C
  • Average Temperature: -35 to 30°C
  • Location: Leh, Ladakh
  • Best Time to Visit: April, May and September-October

Leh Ladakh, situated in the northernmost reaches of India, stands as a newly formed Union Territory renowned for its stark beauty. Referred to as the cold desert of India, Ladakh ranks among the country’s coldest regions. With an altitude soaring to approximately 11,000 feet above sea level, it endures harsh winters and extreme weather conditions, with temperatures plunging to as low as -30°C. The region is infamous for the phenomenon where one can experience both sunburn and cold bite simultaneously on a sunny winter day.

Leh Ladakh

Ladakh is adorned with snow-capped mountains, breathtaking landscapes, and frozen lakes, forming a picturesque backdrop for its Buddhist villages and monasteries. Leh, serving as the administrative district and capital city of Ladakh, stands as the largest town, followed by Kargil. Despite its allure, Ladakh remains one of the world’s most sparsely populated regions. Flowing through Ladakh are mighty rivers like the Indus, Nubra, Shyok, Zanskar, and Suru, adding to the region’s charm. Every year, thousands of adventurers embark on bike journeys to Ladakh, drawn by the allure of experiencing the cold desert landscape firsthand.

Munisiyari, Uttarakhand

  • Elevation: 2200m
  • Minimum Temperature: -12°C
  • Average Temperature: -12 to 25°C
  • Location: Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand
  • Best Time to Visit: March to June and September, October

Munisiyari, nestled amidst the scenic beauty of Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand, stands as an enchanting offbeat town often referred to as Little Kashmir. Perched at an altitude of approximately 7,200 feet above sea level, it ranks among the coldest locales in India, with temperatures plummeting to -15°C during winters.


Renowned as a popular tourist destination, Munisiyari captivates visitors with its awe-inspiring snow-capped mountains and the nearby Goriganga River, located approximately 17 kilometers away, which serves as a major attraction. The town boasts numerous shrines and temples, drawing thousands of worshippers annually. Known for their warmth and hospitality, the locals have adapted various methods to thrive in the harsh climatic conditions and extend assistance to tourists. Munisiyari serves as a base for treks to the Ralam and Milam Glaciers, as well as the iconic Nanda Devi peak, offering thrilling experiences for adventure enthusiasts amidst its breathtaking landscapes.

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Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh

  • Elevation: 4270m
  • Minimum Temperature: -30°C
  • Average Temperature: -30 to 25°C
  • Location: Lahaul and Spiti, Himachal Pradesh
  • Best Time to Visit: March to June and October-November

Nestled in the northeastern reaches of Himachal Pradesh, Spiti Valley emerges as one of India’s coldest locales, ensconced between the barren Trans-Himalayas and the towering Himalayan peaks. With an average winter temperature of -5°C and minimum temperatures plummeting to -30°C, it earns its moniker as a cold desert. Renowned for its rugged landscapes comprising high-altitude deserts, deep gorges, and snow-capped peaks, Spiti Valley allures nature enthusiasts and adventurers alike, beckoning them to explore its unique beauty and embrace thrilling adventures. Dubbed as Little Tibet due to its frigid climate, the valley harbors numerous Tibetan villages and monasteries, lending it a distinct cultural charm.

Spiti Valley

Flowing through the valley, the mighty Spiti River serves as a vital source of water for both visitors and locals. A plethora of activities, including mountain biking, skiing, and trekking, are organized for tourists seeking adrenaline-pumping experiences amidst the valley’s pristine wilderness. Engaged primarily in animal husbandry and agricultural pursuits, the local populace relies on tourism as a significant source of income, further enhancing the valley’s economic vitality.

Sonamarg, Jammu & Kashmir

  • Elevation: 2730m
  • Minimum Temperature: -15.1°C
  • Average Temperature: -15 to 30°C
  • Location: Ganderbal, Jammu and Kashmir
  • Best Time to Visit: between April to November

Sonmarg, situated in the city of Ganderbal in Jammu and Kashmir, stands as a renowned tourist destination and one of India’s coldest locales. Perched at an altitude of approximately 9,000 feet above sea level, it experiences harsh weather conditions throughout the year. Winter temperatures plunge to a minimum of -15.1°C, with even summers maintaining a chilly average temperature of -6°Celsius.


Despite its inhospitable climate, Sonmarg’s breathtaking landscapes of mountains and valleys continue to attract visitors year-round. Residents have adapted various survival techniques, including the use of bonfires and insulation to combat the biting cold. Tourists delight in horse or pony rides amidst the scenic glaciers of Sonmarg, adding to the allure of this beautiful hill station in Jammu and Kashmir.

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Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir

  • Elevation: 1585m
  • Minimum Temperature: -15°C
  • Average Temperature: -15 to 30°C
  • Location: Jammu & Kashmir
  • Best Time to Visit: April to October

Srinagar, renowned for its picturesque landscape and tranquil beauty, resides in the heart of Jammu and Kashmir, standing as one of India’s coldest destinations. With a recorded minimum temperature of -15°C, winters in Srinagar can be particularly severe. To bask in the winter sun and escape the biting cold, both locals and tourists often retreat to the famous Dal Lake.


Despite the harsh winters, the people of Jammu and Kashmir have developed various coping mechanisms. They don warm clothing and seek refuge in highly insulated homes equipped with heaters and bonfires. Additionally, locals employ ingenious methods such as caps, shawls, and boots to stay warm amidst the cold. Year after year, millions of tourists flock to Srinagar to immerse themselves in its serene beauty and behold the snow-capped Himalayan peaks. Despite the challenges posed by the harsh winters, the allure of Srinagar’s majestic landscapes continues to captivate visitors from around the world.

Rohtang Pass, Manali

  • Elevation: 3978m
  • Minimum Temperature: -20°C
  • Average Temperature: -20 to 30°C
  • Location: Manali, Himachal Pradesh
  • Best Time to Visit: between May to November

Rohtang La, nestled in the Pir Panjal Range within the city of Manali, Himachal Pradesh, serves as a crucial link connecting the Lahaul and Spiti Valleys with the Kullu Valley. With an altitude soaring to 4,111 meters (approximately 13,500 feet), it ranks among India’s highest mountain passes.

Rohtang Pass

Accessible from May to November each year, Rohtang Pass finds itself listed among India’s coldest locales, with temperatures remaining below freezing for nearly half the year. Winter temperatures plummet to an average of -5°C, with recorded minimums reaching -20°C. Enveloped in ice for the better part of the year, the pass draws tourists with its breathtaking vistas of valleys and mountains. Beyond its reputation as one of the coldest places, Rohtang Pass thrives as a vibrant tourist destination, attracting thousands with its picturesque landscapes. Renowned for its snow sports opportunities, including snowboarding, skiing, and sledding, it offers exhilarating experiences amidst its snowy terrain.

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India, often associated with its scorching summers, harbors a treasure trove of destinations where winter reigns supreme. From the icy heights of the Himalayas to the frost-covered plains of the north-east, these top 10 coldest places offer an unparalleled experience amidst extreme winter chill. Whether you’re a thrill-seeker in search of adventure or a nature enthusiast craving solitude, these destinations promise an unforgettable journey into the heart of winter’s embrace. So bundle up, brave the cold, and embark on an expedition to explore the frosty wonders of Incredible India.


Which is the coldest place in India in winter?

Dras - The Coldest Place in India. Located in the remote Kargil district of Jammu and Kashmir, Dras stands as a solitary town, often referred to as 'The Gateway to Ladakh'. Renowned as the coldest place in India, Dras is frequently cited as second only to the chilliest inhabited location on Earth.

What are the top 10 coldest places to visit in India?

• Dras • Siachen Glacier • Sela Pass, Tawang • Lachen and Thangu Valley, North Sikkim • Leh Ladakh • Munisiyari, Uttarakhand • Spiti Valley, Himachal Pradesh • Sonamarg, Jammu & Kashmir • Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir • Rohtang Pass, Manali

When is the best time to visit these coldest places in India?

The best time to visit these destinations is typically during the months of May to November when the weather is relatively milder and roads are more accessible. However, for those seeking extreme winter experiences, visiting during the peak winter months of December to February is recommended.

What are some common activities to enjoy in these extreme winter chill destinations?

Visitors can indulge in a variety of winter activities such as skiing, snowboarding, sledding, ice skating, and trekking on frozen landscapes. Additionally, experiencing local culture, exploring monasteries, and enjoying the pristine beauty of snow-covered mountains are popular activities.

Which is the coldest hill station in India?

Located at an altitude of 3350 meters, Drass holds the distinction of being the coldest place in India and ranks second among the coldest inhabited regions on Earth. During the winter season, the average temperature plummets to -23°C, further solidifying its reputation as an extreme winter destination.

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