Zanskar (also Zangskar) is a region in Ladakh, north-west India. It is famous for its stunning scenery and Tibetan-style Buddhist monasteries. It borders on Ladakh to which it is almost identical from an outsiders point of view, only being more remote and less densely populated, with less infrastructure.
Zanskar Valley is currently approachable by road from a Kargil town which is the second largest town in Ladakh region. It lies on the Srinagar - Leh highway. The main town of Zanskar region is Padum which is approx 240 km from Kargil. There is an intermediate village of Rangdum as well. There is currently a road under construction which will connect Darcha to Padum and onwards to Leh via Nimoo.
Zangla: Was ruled by a titular king, till a few years back. Zangla lies in the north of Zanskar, around 35 km from Padum. For the visit of the austere lifestyle of a small community of nuns, one can find many old nunneries.
Zongkhul: Has many spectacular cave monasteries famous in Zanskar. Zongkhul is located on the trekking trail of Padum to Kishtwar which is just before the starting point of the ascent of Omasi- la Pass trek.
Stongdey: The Stongdey monastery lies on the road towards Zangla, 18 km in north direction from Padum. There is a community of about 60 Gelukpa monks. Stongdey is the second largest monastic establishment in the Zanskar region. Tourists can approach this place on foot by the road in about 4 hours. Monastery climb is rather strenuous, but it is worthwhile after seeing the breathtaking natural beauty of the valley.
Karsha The Karsha Monastery lies just opposite to the main town of Padum which is on another side of the river, Karsha is currently the biggest monastery in Zanskar there are around 70 - 80 monks reside there, beside Karsha monastery is built on a hilltop having Spectacular and panoramic view of whole Paduma and surrounding areas. Karsha monastery is a Gelukpa sect and wears yellow hats.