The Lamayuru Monastery is a Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Lamayuru, Leh district, Ladakh, India. It is located on the Srinagar-Leh highway, 15 kilometers east of Fotu Pass, at 3,510 meters. It is also a popular tourist destination in the Ladakh region and a must-see place in Ladakh. So, put this place on your bucket list when you plan your trip to Leh Ladakh. During your visit to the monastery, you can learn about the Buddhist faith and culture.
According to Drikung history, the valley around Lamayuru was previously a lake. Naropa then drained the lake, splitting the hill. The dead lion in the lake was the reason why the site was chosen for the monastery. Today, the temple is called Seng-ge-Sgang, which translates to lion mound. The Lamayuru monastery is located in the southern zone of the rock, where an ancient temple named Seng-ge-Sgang was built. It has been called the largest heritage monastery in Ladakh. The shrines of the Gonkhang are the most important parts of the monastery.
In addition to the monastery, Lamayuru is also known for YuruKabgyat, a two-day cultural festival held during the second Tibetan lunar calendar month. During the ceremony, monks wear different masks and dance to celebrate the festival’s importance. Visitors can spend a day at the monastery or stay overnight in a nearby town. You can book accommodations in the village during your visit to the Lamayuru monastery.
One of the most interesting aspects of the monastery is its location. Lamayuru is popularly known as Moonland because the landscapes were so picturesque and reminiscent of the moon. The surrounding lunar terrain makes the monastery an interesting and unusual place to visit. The temple features an 11-headed statue of Avalokitesvara, a clay sculpture of Vairocana, Ratsambhava, and Akshobya. The monks live in isolation and rarely share their homes. The monastery has a large prayer hall, which is often closed for tourists. You can only enter the prayer hall.
The Lamayuru monastery is the oldest monastic site in Leh and belongs to the Red-Hat sect of Buddhism. The Gompa (monastery) is comprised of 5 buildings and is home to more than fifty monks. There are two festivals in Lamayuru each year. These festivals are held in July and August. For the sake of tourists, it is worth a visit.
The monastery houses 150 monks and is considered one of the most beautiful places to meditate. The Lamayuru village is also home to the famous Wanla Monastery. Its proximity to Leh makes it a popular destination for travelers from all over the world. Whether you’re visiting for religious purposes or to hike the peaks, the atmosphere at Lamayuru is magical and inspiring.