Monasteries of Ladakh
Booshnews.com, August 24, 2010
Leh, Ladakh (India) -- A Buddhist monastery is the place for worship, meditation and teaching. The Buddhists monasteries are great attractions that have always attracted people in Ladakh. Ladakh is a place that has immense beauty and serenity.
There are various monasteries of all kinds, belonging to various orders or schools of Buddhism, dot this valley all over.
These monasteries are mostly located at great places and have always been a sight to watch. There are various trekking options that one can take while visiting one of these monasteries.
Also, these monasteries boast of rich collections of Buddhist vestiges like thangkas, etc. Characteristically, these monasteries in Ladakh are located at distant areas, away from the fast city life. This creates an atmosphere of peace and serenity in and around them.
One of the biggest monasteries in Ladakh is the Hemis Gompa which was built in 1630 and gave shelter to monks of the Brokpa or Red Hat sect. It also houses the largest Thangka painting that is found in Ladakh. The Hemis Gompa is characterized by colorful masked dances. Hemis is also famous for a huge painting of Buddha, which is bring to the public or displayed to the public only once in 11 years of time period.
Situated on the bank of the Indus, the Alchi Gompa, is easily accessible. This Gompa was founded by the Great Translator, Ringchen Zangpo and this is located at a great location on the ground
Chandspa is the home of an impressive white-domed structure called The Shanti Stupa. It was orginally built by a Japanese Buddhist organization and it was inaugurated by His Holiness the Dalai Lama in 1985. The Shanti Stupa is amazingly spectacular and when it is illuminated at night.
Though there are innumerable monasteries in Ladakh, and each one has a beauty and uniqueness of its own, a few monasteries like the ones mentioned above are a must visit for every traveler coming to The Land Of Passes. Most of the deluxe and luxury hotels, guesthouses and tour operators have packages that are specifically dedicated to monastery visits. Many of the monasteries have certain rules that visitors have to follow like maintaining silence, removing footwear, going around the monastery only in clock-wise direction, and so on.
The tour guides help you on this. So, though Ladakh has many valleys and lakes and mountains, its beauty is incomplete without its monasteries. And Ladakh cannot be incompletely enjoyed by any tourist.