Monday, October 31, 2011

We Visited Leh – Part IV – Last day in Leh

Last Day in Leh – 05 Oct 2011

Our first visit of the day was to Hemis Monastery. It existed before the 11th century and is the largest monastic institution in Ladakh. Hemis has more than 200 branch monasteries in the Himalayas and more than 1,000 monks under its care. It is an important living monument and heritage of Himalayas and its people.

As you begin the climb

A local  - Her face resembling the contours of the 
View of the rooms
Hemis prayer wheel

A section of the monastery

Inside the court yard

At the Hemis

A complete view

A section of the monastery

Part of the museum

Maitreya Buddha - a two storey high statue
Statue of Buddha

Floral painting

Part of the museum

The next on the list was Thiksey Monastery. It is noted for its resemblance to the Potola Palace in Lhasa,Tibet and is the largest Gompa in central Ladakh. The monastery is located at an altitude of 3,600 metres (11,800 ft) in the Indus valley. It is a 12-storey complex and houses many items of Buddhist art such as stupas, statues, thangkas, wall paintings and swords. Here we met a doctor monk and bought some Ladhaki medicines

A view of Thiskey

With the Doctor monk

 A distant view 

The Stok Palace Museum is located about 14 kilometers away from Leh across the Choglamsar bridge. This was constructed in 1825 by King Tsespal Tondup Namgyal who was the last ruler of independent Ladakh. The current royal family lives in Stok Palace. The museum at this place has a huge collection of ornaments related to royal family, traditional clothing and a huge collection of thankas

Interiors of the palace

Rooms in the palace

The Shanti Stupa was built by both Japanese Buddhists and Ladakh Buddhists. The Shanti Stupa features the photograph of the current Dalai Lama with the relics of the Buddha at its base. The stupa is built as a two-level structure. The Shanti Stupa was built to promote world peace and prosperity and to commemorate 2500 years of Buddhism. It is considered a symbol of the ties between the people of Japan and Ladakh

The imposing dome of the Shanti Stupa
View of Leh from the Stupa
Inside the Stupa - wheel of Dharma
Birth of  Buddha

Image of Buddha

Defeating the devils

Lovely view of the roof

Shey is a town in ladhak that has the old summer palace. It is located 15 km. from Leh towards Hemis. The palace was built more than 555 years ago by Lhachen Palgyigon, the king of Ladakh. The palace has the largest golden Buddha statue in Ladakh.

Shey palace in the back drop of Beas
Shey palace

Shey palace brings out the best in Ladakhi architecture

A distant view

Another view
Last look at the Himalayas - another 10 days the entire range will be white
Yaks on the way to the mess. In all we saw Ibex,red fox,black - billed Magpie,Himalayan Marmot,mouse hare
Mirror like Beas channeled for irrigation
The sun is about to set
Never ending fascination with Ladakh

Some of the last impressions of Leh
Way back to the mess

After a tiring day, we returned to 603 EME Battalion Mess and bid good bye to Driver of Xylo Nazeer and our Sahayak Sepoy Vipin Kumar.

With Nazeer our Xylo driver

With Sepoy Vipin Kumar

The notice sums up the eternal bond between the Indian Army and Ladakh
Chits sums up the happy feeling at the end of the trip
An extremely contended look

There ended our very fascinating trip to Leh, Ladhak. We returned to Bangalore on 06th Oct fully satisfied and happy we undertook this journey.


  1. Your blog is good for those who are planning to visit ladakh for the first time. Ladakh is a good place to visit.I had been there through and had enjoyed a lot on my trip.

    1. Dear Harjeet Kaur,
      Thanks for ur comments.Hope u will continue to read my blog

    2. Yes sure sir....

      waiting for more interesting blogs....
      Are you from Defence background?

  2. Dear Harjeet Kaur,
    Yes,I retired from the Indian Navy.