Chang La

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This article is about the mountain pass in India. For the mountain on the China–Nepal border, see Changla.
Chang La
Elevation 5,360 m (17,585 ft)
Traversed by Road from Indus Valley to Pangong Lake
Location India
Range Himalaya
Coordinates 34°03′32″N 77°55′51″E / 34.058917°N 77.930832°E / 34.058917; 77.930832Coordinates: 34°03′32″N 77°55′51″E / 34.058917°N 77.930832°E / 34.058917; 77.930832
Chang La is located in Jammu and Kashmir
Chang La
Location of Chang La in Jammu & Kashmir

The Chang La (el. 5,360 m or 17,590 ft) is a high mountain pass in Ladakh, India.[1][2] It is claimed to be the second highest motorable road in the world (which is either Merisimik La or Mana pass). Chang La is approached from Leh via kharu and sekti village by a black top road. The climb is very steep and requires a careful drive. The descent from chang La towards tangtse or darbuk is again very steep. The place is a must go for nature lovers.

The Chang La is on the route to Pangong Lake from Leh. The name literally means "Pass towards the South" or "Pass in the South" (Chang = south, La = Pass). It is falsely claimed that the pass is named after the supposed sadhu Changla Baba, a myth propagated by the dedication of a temple at the pass to the supposed Changla Baba. If any such sadhu exists or existed, he would have been named for the pass, rather than vice versa (since the name "changla baba" means the "baba of the southern pass". The small town of Tangste is the nearest settlement. The Changla Pass is the main gateway for the Changthang Plateau situated in the Himalayas. The nomadic tribes of the region are collectively known as the Changpa or Chang-pa. The world’s highest research station, established by DRDO is functional in Chang La at a height of 17,500 ft.[3]


  1. ^ GeoNames. "Chang La Pass". Retrieved 2009-06-17. 
  2. ^ Jina, Prem Singh (31 August 1998). Ladakh: The Land & The People. India: Indus Publishing. pp. 25–26. ISBN 978-81-7387-057-6. 
  3. ^ "At 17,500 ft, world’s highest research station becomes functional in Ladakh".