Monasteries in Ladakh are far more than religious centers. Located in heaven that Ladakh is, these famous monasteries are purifying havens where one can find inner peace. Housing beautiful paintings, ancient thangkas, silver and gold gilded statues of the omnipresent Lord Buddha, these monasteries draw visitors from far and wide to return and understand the wonder of the Buddhist culture. So, it is considered as one of the most effective places to go in Ladakh.

Ladakh Monasteries contain a surreal beauty that fascinates everyone. Ladakh has a tremendous history and sparkling heritage too. While some Ladakh monasteries have opened to accepting the liberal way of life of someone and allowed them to go through their doors to know and learn a replacement culture.

Nevertheless, all the monasteries in Leh are beautiful and distinct in their own way of promoting the positivity and rich culture of Buddhism to the globe. So while on your tour in Ladakh, ensure that visiting monasteries forms a very important part of your itinerary, and you’ll come with an enriching and unique experience to hold with you, all of your life.

 

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1) Which is the oldest monastery in Ladakh? 

Lamayuru Monastery -

Lamayuru monastery is one of the oldest and largest monasteries in Ladakh and is said to have been built around the same time as Alchi Monastery. The monastery belongs to the Red-Hat Sect of Buddhism. The key attraction of the monastery is its rich wall paintings, a set of thangkas, murals, scriptures, and statues of various kinds of Buddha and other deities. Each year on the 17th and therefore the 18th day of the 5th month of the Tibetan calendar, a holy masked dance is performed by the monks of the monastery.

Location - About 125 km from Leh town and can be visited on the way to Leh from Srinagar.

2) Which is the largest monastery in Ladakh? 

Diskit Monastery -

Diskit is one of the foremost beautiful and therefore the largest Buddhist monasteries in Ladakh, founded in the 14th century, it has various Buddha statues, images of other guardian gods, and an enormous drum. The key attraction of the monastery is Owing to the breathtaking location, this one amongst the famous monasteries in Ladakh offers solemn serenity and inner peace.

Location - About 15 km north-west off the Khalsar-Panamik route, at the edge of the desert in Shyok valley.

3) Which are the top-visited monasteries in Ladakh? 

Shey Monastery -

Shey Monastery is one of the top monasteries in Ladakh, It offers an amazing view of the nearby valleys. The two-storied statue of Sakyamuni Buddha wrought in copper and gold attracts tourists to the current place. The Shey Srubla festival is the highlight. This huge image of the seated Buddha is believed to be the largest metal idol and therefore the second largest Buddha statue within the Ladakh region engraved rocks beside the road below the monastery. 

Location - About 16 km from the City of Leh and is en route to the Thiksey and Hemis monastery.

Rizong Monastery -

Rizong monastery belongs to the Gelugpa or Yellow Hat sect of Buddhism and is also called the Yuma Changchubling in the Ladakh region. Established at Ri-dzong in 1831 by Lama Tsultim Nima under the Gelukpa order, today it's around 40 monks who need to abide by very strict rules and regulations. It's also famous as ‘the Paradise For Meditation’. The complex also consists of a variety of spiritual shrines. 

Location - About 73 km from the city of Leh.

4)  Which are the Buddhist monasteries in Ladakh? 

Rangdum Gompa - 

Rangdum is another of Ladakh’s citadel monasteries, situated at an altitude of over 3,500 feet within the barren Suru valley on the road from Leh to Zanskar. The 18th-century gompa (Buddhist monastery) belongs to the Gelugpa sect of Buddhism, where the monks identify themselves with the yellow hats they wear.

Location - Kargil Suru Valley about 130 km from Kargil and 343 km from the city of Leh.

Phyang Gompa -

Phyang Gompa belongs to the red hat sect of Buddhism and is the impressive monastery in Leh Ladakh. It is located on a hilltop and thus offers stunning views of the encompassing. The white and ochre-colored structure is one among the must-visit monasteries in Ladakh and is a very important hub of Digung teachings. The wall paintings at Phyang Gompa depict Buddhist culture and heritage.

Location - Around 15 kilometers west of Leh.

5) What are the staying options near the monasteries?  

Some of the hotels near monasteries are -  Grand Dragon, Hotel Ladakh Imperial, Hotel Royal Palace, Nature Residency Hotel, and Hotel Abdul. Also, many guest houses are located nearby monasteries. Some of the monasteries in Ladakh have also started to offer where you can stay in monasteries themselves, Some of these monasteries are Thiksey Monastery, Lamayuru Gompa, Hemis Monastery, Phugtal Gompa, and Rangdum Gompa.

6) Is there any entry fee for visiting the monasteries in Ladakh? 

No, the monasteries in Ladakh don't charge fees from their visitors. Anyone who has dressed modestly can enter these monasteries and revel in blissful, calm, peaceful, and pious vibes there. 

7) What is the best time to visit the monasteries in Ladakh

The best time to visit Ladakh monasteries is the festival month, the month of June, the famous Hemis Festival is well known and anyone can participate in its carnival and fair. Visiting after the month of May is also good as the summer starts and roads become clear from snow.