Darcha is a recurring name when you pack your bags for Padum trek as it is the base camp for the moderate yet adventurous trek in the Lahaul region. Darcha is a small village on the bank of Bhaga River in Lahaul in Spiti Lahaul District in Himachal Pradesh situated at an elevation of 3360 meters. In the northern most part of Himachal Pradesh along the Leh-Manali Highway is Darcha, a secluded permanent settlement. Many have described the village as a “lonely cluster of dry stone huts and dingy tent camps”. The total population of the village is 298 among which 152 are men and 146 are women. Travelers going to Leh from Manali take an overnight stay at Darchu. The river nearby causes the nature to be soft and calm especially at night so that the travelers would find better sleep during their tiresome journey.
The popular Padum trek ends at Darcha and there are many stalls and shops on the street to just relax and have food. The village is surrounded by Naggar Tehsil, Spiti Tehsil, Bharmour Teshil. The nearby cities to the village are Keylong, Dharamshala, Mandi and Chamba. There is a check-point set up by the police to check the passport of all passing people and vehicles.
Height: Sarchu is located at an elevation of 3360 meters above the sea level.
Location: Darch is on the border of Himchal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir. The nearest railway station is Shimla Railway station only that is 174 km away. Buses and jeeps would be available in plenty to reach Darcha.
Best time to go: Anytime is suitable to visit Darcha but during winter the cold climatic conditions may pose difficulty to stay there.