Monasteries and Monuments

The most attractive feature of the landscape of Ladakh are the Buddhist monasteries situated on the isolated hillock in the vicinity of villages, these aesthetically pleasing, architecturally interesting monasteries provide the focus for the faith of the highly religious Buddhist people. Monasteries are the places of worship, isolated meditation and religious instruction for the young. Many monasteries celebrate their annual festivals in winter, which are marked by gay mask dances. Monasteries have a wealth of artefacts, Lamayuru, the oldest religious centre of Ladakh, beats all other in sheer grandeur. In its uniqueness of wood carving, statues and frescoes, Alchi offers the highest rewards. The wealth of its possession and its annual summer festival make Hemis the most popular, while Thiksay rates high in terms of architectural impact and the beauty of the festival performances at Likir and Phyang with their proximity to Leh are great attractions in their favour while the accessibility of the Shey, Spituk and the Sankar monasteries make them suitable for visitors with time at a premium.

The approach to the monasteries is lined with mane walls and Chortens. Mane walls are made of votive stones on which prayers and holy figures are inscribed, while Chortens are semi religious shrines or reliquaries, containing relics of holy people or scripts. Besides monasteries, the 9 storey Leh Palace, Stok Palace Museum, Mahabodhi International Meditation Centre and the Central Institute of Buddhist Studies Choglamsar, Mosque and Moravian Church at Leh are added attraction for the tourists. Most of these can be conveniently visited from Leh as buses ply daily between Leh and those monasteries. Most of the monasteries remain open throughout the day.

National Monuments in Ladakh

The government of India have declared the following historical monuments in Ladakh as national importance under Archaeological Survey of India.

  1. Sculpture at Drass.
  2. Rock Cut Sculpture at Mulbekh
  3. Lamayuru Monastery
  4. Likir Monastery
  5. Alchi Monastery
  6. Phyang Monastery
  7. Hemis Monastery
  8. Leh Palace
  9. Old Castle Tsemo Hill
  10. Stupa at T- Suru
  11. Shey Palace

Monasteries in Ladakh

  1. Alchi Monastery
  2. Basgo Castle
  3. Bardan Monastery
  4. Chemday Monastery
  5. Castle of Tingmosgang
  6. Castle of Sani
  7. Hemis Monastery
  8. Karsha Monastery Zanskar
  9. Lamayuru Monastery
  10. Leh Palace and Namgial Tsemo
  11. Likir Monastery
  12. Lingshed Monastery
  13. Matho Monastery
  14. Ney Buddha Statue
  15. Phyang Monastery
  16. Rizong Monastery
  17. Shey Palace & Monastery
  18. Spituk Monastery
  19. Stakna Monastery
  20. Stok Palace & Monastery
  21. Stongdey Monastery
  22. Takthog Monastery
  23. Thiksay Monastery
  24. Tresthang Monastery
  25. Wanla Monastery
  26. Zongkuyl Monastery
  27. Leh mosque
  28. Shah hamdan mosque at shey

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