A beautiful lake at an altitude of 13700+ feet, surrounded by bare hills. On a good day, the Himalayan snow capped peaks are entirely visible and their reflection on the water is a photographers delight! There are 2 ways to reach the lake from Dhankar village, one is a direct climb (watch out for the loose terrain), the other is more straightforward but takes longer. The banks of the lake make for a perfect camping spot too!
The road from Manali to Kaza
"The 200 kilometer road from Manali to Kaza in Spiti is filled with spectacular ever changing scenery. From the dense forested hills of Manali, to the rocky barren planes and peaks around Chattru, and the sweeping snow covered mountains surrounding Kunzam Pass. The route is popular with motorbike enthusiasts and trekkers alike. Facilities along the way are minimal, with roadside dhabas serving basic food"
On the way from Manali to Kalpa.
Kalpa is a town at above 9000 feet famous for its view of Kinnaur Kailash mountains as well as its apple orchards. There are pine forests all around and the entire range of peaks are visible. It gets quite few visitors and in order to continue towards Spiti Valley, one needs to secure Inner Line Permits from Reckong Peo.
At an altitude of 14,100 ft, Chandra Tal has to be one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. In spring time, flowers bloom majorly on the meadows whereas at night the sky comes alive with stars with a spectacular view of the Milky Way. In my view, September is the best time to visit Chandra Tal. It is cold but in terms of seeing flora, fauna, topography and for photography, this is the best time!