Important Mountain Passes

A pass is a gap, or break, in high, rugged terrain such as a mountain ridge. A Mountain Pass forms when a glacier or stream erodes, or wears away, the land between areas of higher terrain. Passes often provide the easiest routes for people to travel across steep mountain ranges. For this reason, they have played an important role throughout human history in migration, trade, and settlement.

Most passes are flat at their summits and have the shape of a saddle. They can consist of very short, steep summits, or expansive valleys that stretch for kilometres. Often, passes sit just above the source of a river fed by precipitation and snowmelt.

Mountain passes of India

Mountain Passes of India

Jammu – Kashmir & Ladakh region:

NameRangeImportant Notes
Aghil PassKarakoram range
Karakoram PassKarakoram range
Burzil PassGreat Himalayan rangeConnects Srinagar to Gilgit and connects India to Central Asia.
Banihal PassPir Panjal rangeConnects Jammu and Kashmir valley. Jawahar tunnel and NH44 passes through this. 
Zoji LaZanskar rangeNH1 passes through this which connects Srinagar and Leh
Khardung LaLadakh rangeConnects Shyok and Nubra valley
Chang LaLadakh range

Himachal Pradesh:

NameRangeImportant notes
Baralacha LaZanskar rangeConnects Lahaul-Spiti to Ladakh
Shipki LaGreat HimalayasSatluj river enters in India through this.
Rohtang PassPir PanjalConnects Manali and LehAtal tunnel is built near Rohtang pass. It connects Manali to Lahaul-Spiti. It is the longest highway tunnel in the world according to PIB. 


NameRangeImportant notes
Mana LaGreat HimalayasWay to reach Mansarovar and Kailash passes through this. This is situated on the border of India and Tibet.
Niti LaGreat HimalayasLocated close to Mana La
LipulekhGreat HimalayasLocated at the tri junction of India, Tibet and Nepal


NameRangeImportant notes
Nathu LaGreat HimalayasProvides a way from Gangtok to Chumbi valley. A lot of trade between India and China happens through this pass. It also provides a way for Kailash-Mansarovar.
Jelep LaGreat Himalayas

Other Passes in Northeast India:

NamePlaceImportant notes
Bomdi LaArunachal Pradesh Connects to Tibet
Diphu PassArunachal PradeshLocated at the tri-junction of India, China and Myanmar. 
Lekhapani PassAssam
Tuju PassManipurConnects India to ASEAN
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