Imagine getting a letter from thousands of kilometers away from mountains. The letter, which comes from an altitude of 4440 meters above sea level, maybe you will feel the freezing cold. Yes, there is a post office in Hikkim in Himachal Pradesh, the world’s highest post office.
The Post Office is located in the Spiti Valley, the highest inhabited area on earth. Spiti means “the land at the centre,” such a name may have come from the fact that it was between Tibet and India. The Post Office was established in the year 1983 with its rugged terrain and cold weather. RinchenChering has been a postmaster ever since. In addition to him, there are two postmen there. They are going to deliver the letter on foot. The post office’s distribution range, which was set up for about five villages, is about 46 km in circumference. No other postman in the world has travelled this far.
The Spiti Valley is a Buddhist centre, isolated by snow for about six months of the year. There are 1000-year-old Buddhist monasteries here. Hikkim Post Office handles the passport services of Buddhist monks. The internet has never reached here as the mobile phone has less range. For this reason, the communication of the locals with the outside world is mainly through this post office. The post office also serves as a local bank. But the post office will be closed for six months after the snowfall. Chering has been the postmaster of the post office since November 5, 1983. He was hired here at the age of 22 because he knew how to run fast and had his own bicycle. Casa is the centre of the Spiti Valley. Hikkim is a village located at a distance of 14 km from here. Travel sites say there is a Himachal Road Transport Corporation bus from Casa to the village. The journey time is one and a half hours. Taxis are also available. Paleontologists say that this region was part of the Indian Ocean before the formation of the Himalayas. The numerous fossils of marine life evidence this found here