I Love Spiti


I Love Spiti was born out of love for Spiti and a collective dismay at the increasing amounts of plastic waste, especially from bottled water in the Valley.

An average tourist consumes 2-3 bottles per day that accumulate in landfills, riverbeds, fields, or everywhere throughout Spiti!

  • It is estimated that 3,00,000+ plastic bottles are left behind in Spiti each year. This number is increasing manifold every year.
  • Plastic bottles take 450 years to degrade! Even when discarded in a dustbin, they typically end up in a dumping ground next to the Spiti River.
  • The nearest recycling center is about 500 kilometers away in Punjab.
  • If burnt or buried, the bottles release harmful chemicals into the air, groundwater or soil, ultimately polluting local food or water. These chemicals are known to cause cancer, heart disease, hormonal imbalance,and other serious ailments.
  • Repeatedly reusing plastic bottles isn’t an alternative either. Single-use bottles leach harmful chemicals into the liquids stored in the bottle.

Give us a mountain and we’ll climb it!


Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has
- Margaret Mead



The I Love Spiti initiative, aims to:

  • Educate the community, local businesses and travellers about the impact of plastic on one’s health and on the environment
  • Collect as much recyclable waste off the mountainsides of Spiti to send out of the valley for appropriate recycling
  • Reduce the use of plastic bottled water by providing drinking water refill points across the valley

Educate | Encourage | Inspire


  • Many locals & local schools stopped using plastic bottles
  • Restaurants & monasteries agreed to set up water refill points
  • Installation made from plastic bottles

Change is possible only when there is collective responsibility and action. Despite staring at a mammoth crisis, we set out to engage key stakeholders for discussions on sustainable solutions to the plastic problem in Spiti.

Local community: Meetings with local women’s groups and Anganwadi workers to educate them on the harmful impacts associated with use and reuse of plastic bottles, open dumping and burning of plastic, went a long way. A number of families in Kaza stopped using plastic bottles and the local school banned kids from bringing water in single-use plastic bottles.

Local Businesses: Recognizing the role that local businesses must take in the fight against plastic, we reached out to hoteliers, guesthouses, and travel companies to encourage them to stop providing bottled water and offer filtered water instead. A few restaurants came forward to provide filtered water and monasteries agreed to maintain refill points provided by us.

Travelers: To generate awareness amongst travellers, we developed a life-size I LOVE SPITI art installation made from discarded plastic bottles with the hope to inspire travellers to keep Spiti pristine and pledge not to buy bottled water.

Make a Difference

Be a part of the Solution, Not part of the Pollution!

  • Pledge to say NO to plastic bottled water at the I Love Spiti installation (#ilovespiti) and inspire other travellers
  • Carry a reusable bottle and REFILL
  • Carry your non-biodegradable waste out of Spiti


Collect & Recycle


  • 2+ tons of waste sent out of the valley

Even though the scale of the plastic problem is large, change always takes place with small steps. We encourage travellers to collect discarded bottles they find across Spiti – on the roads, near shops, or the slopes in Spiti. With the help of volunteers, we initiate collection drives of plastic bottles littered across the valley yearly, crush the bottles, and send them down to Manali to a waste collector.

Make a Difference

Join us in keeping Spiti plastic free!


While travelling in Spiti collect any plastic bottles you find and drop them off at Sol Café or Taste of Spiti in Kaza

Volunteer with us on our Backpacking with a Purpose travel program

Every volunteer makes a difference!

Drinking Water Refill


  • 5 water refill points set up
  • 100+ plastic bottles saved from being dumped/ day

It is impossible to discourage the usage of bottled water without safe alternatives. For many years now we have been offering free water refills at our eateries, Sol Café and Taste of Spiti. In 2019, we took this a step further and set up 3 public water refill points at key tourist destinations in Spiti.

You can refill your bottles in Spiti at:

  • Kaza: Taste of Spiti, Sol Cafe
  • Kee: Kee Monastery
  • Komic: Highest Cafe in the World
  • Dhankar: Dhankar Monastery
  • Most family-run homestays and many hotels in Spiti

As a part of our trips we provide all our travellers with a reusable stainless-steel bottle. We ensure our travellers are equipped with what they need to Make a Difference, while we continue working towards setting up more water refill points across Spiti.

Make a Difference

  • Say NO to plastic bottled water in Spiti
  • Carry a reusable bottle and REFILL

Join the movement and get your own Bottle


Help set up more water refill points to make Spiti plastic bottle free!

Other Initiatives

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