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This monastery is the oldest one in the area belonging to the Kargyu School. The Gompa is a unique example of a monastic complex of this period, which manifests in its structure the geomantic principles which underlie religious constructions of this type. In addition, there are examples of construction techniques and details that are not found elsewhere. This place is a home for several hundreds of monks, thousands of devotees, villagers and tourists during the most memorable festival celebrated in Hemis Gompa, the largest Buddhist monastery in Ladakh.
Hemis National Park
The largest national park of India, Hemis National Park, gets its name from the 400-year-old Hemis Monastery, which is situated inside the park. The monastery, and area around it, are mentioned in texts documenting the passage of the Silk Route. The few people who live inside the park are Buddhists who have been calling the place home for centuries.The Hemis National Park has the highest density of Snow Leopards in the world. People from around the world spend weeks, months and even years for a sight of the 'Ghost Cat'. The national park is home to several other endangered animals, such as the Ladakhi Urial, Asiatic Ibex, Tibetan wolf, Eurasian Brown Bear and the Red Fox.
Hemis is a village in Ladakh that is built around the famous Hemis Monastery, which is said to be built in the 11th century by Kinf Snege Nampar Gyalva. The village is primarily visited by travellers during the time of the Hemis Festival, when the monastery is decorated with colourful masks and motifs. The Hemis Festival takes place in the first week of July to celebrate the teachings of Lord Padmasambhava and is frequented by travellers from all over the world.Where to eat: There are very few tea-stalls and dhabas in the area. The Hemis Cafe, is the only proper restaurant in Hemis, which is also on the outskirts of the main village.Where to stay: The Hemis Monastery provides rooms and stay options to travellers.How to reach: You can reach Hemis via Leh from Srinagar on the Srinagar-Leh Highway or all the way from Manali going through Sarchu and Dharchu. Leh Airport is the closest airport to Hemis.