7/11/2008, 7/14/2008, 7/31/2008 - | India , Ladakh

Around Leh

In between treks and lazy days in Leh, I made a few day trips to some of the monasteries near Leh.  Spituk monastery is the closest major monastery to Leh and was mainly interesting for the sand mandala that was being created by the monks at the time I visited, an undertaking which would take the monks three more days to complete, seven days in total of carefully sprinkling the fine grains of colored sand.  As a result of its dramatic location, reminiscent of the Potala Palace in Lhasa, the monastery at Tikse is one of the most famous and visited monasteries in Ladakh.  I also visited the monastery at Phyang for its yearly monastic festival which included the requisite religious masked dances known as Cham.  I had seen similar monastic festivals in Tibet and Hemis in Ladakh but such festivals are always interesting places to wonder around and photograph.

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