Spiti Valley Itinerary: A Complete Guide to Every Monastery

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Photo of Spiti Valley Itinerary: A Complete Guide to Every Monastery by Sourjya Das

Spiti is a wonderland. It is almost every backpacker's dream to visit Spiti. A buddhist region, this land is filled with monasteries and villages with houses and huts built in ancient Tibetan style. Here is the complete guide to every monastery that comes in your way while you are en route Spiti. Miss none.

This is undoubtedly the most beautiful monastery in the whole of Spiti Valley. This monastery had suffered a lot of damage in the past, both man-made and natural, but renovation and reconstruction has kept its charm going.

Location - 12km from Kaza

Things to see - The walls exhibit paintings, murals and thangkas which are painted Tibetan banners, ancient manuscripts, stucco images, wind musical instruments and weapons

Best time to visit - June to July is the best time to visit this monastery as, first of all, it is the season-time and secondly, the Chaam dancers hold their festival and perform rare rituals where a large demon sculpture made of butter is burnt and monks walk over devotees as they lay themselves down.

How to reach - A bus from Manali to Kaza and then a bus from Kaza to Ki Monastery which runs every day.

Ki Monastery, Kaza

Photo of Ki Monestary, Kaza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Sourjya Das

The village of Kibber, has a monastery and Kibber being the highest village in Spiti Valley, it gives you an incredible view of rugged, rough and stony mountains as it is situated in a narrow valley.

Location - 18km from Kaza

Things to see - Ancient monastery architecture, Kibber Wildlife Sanctuary, Jhoola Bridge (5km from Kibber) and Fossils Park

Best time to visit - June to October

How to reach - A public bus from Kaza which runs every day during season or a private vehicle from Kaza.

Kibber Village

Photo of Kibber, Himachal Pradesh, India by Sourjya Das

This beautiful village has very old monasteries and buildings from ancient time. It is encompassed by green fields, snow-clad mountains and desolate landscapes that astonishes everyone who visits this village, which is absolutely outstanding amongst other places in the entire Spiti Valley. The enchantment of nature at Langza leaves everybody stunned.

Location - 16km from Kaza

Things to see - Statue of Medicine Buddha in Hikam

Best time to visit - June to October

How to reach - Local buses from Kaza every Tuesday and Saturday or private vehicle from Kaza

Statue of Medicine Buddha

Photo of Langza, Himachal Pradesh, India by Sourjya Das

The Tangyud Monastery at the village of Komic, was built like a braced castle on the edge of a profound gorge, with monstrous inclined mud walls and bastions with vertical red ochre and white vertical stripes which influence them to look significantly taller than they truly are. It is one of the highest altitude monasteries in India.

Location - 2km southeast of Hikkim, 14km from Kaza

Things to see - Walls of the monastery, Inner Assembly Hall

Best time to visit - June to October during seasons. Apart from season, in January for the Halda Festival, in August for the Ladarcha Festival and in November for the Guktor Festival.

How to reach - Buses run everyday from Kaza to Hikkim and from Hikkim, a walk of 2km, or a private vehicle to Hikkim and then to Tangyud.

Tangyud Monastery

Photo of Komic, Himachal Pradesh, India by Sourjya Das

The Lhalung monastery is one of the oldest in Spiti, and built on the highest point of the slope. The neighboring village of Lhalung stands at an elevation of 3,658 meters. Stays of an ancient wall enclosing all the monastery structures can be seen, at a few spots. The monastery is thought to be an ancient community for discussions and learning.

Location - 28km from Kaza

Things to see - Choshor or the local site of worship, circular passage around the inner sanctum, buddhist remnants and patterns inside the monastery and white shrine outside the monastery.

Best time to visit - May to October

How to reach - First, go to Lingti village first from Kaza, around 18km away. There goes a diversion to Rama village, around 6km from that point and after that over the extension, further to Lhalung village around 4km from Rama village.

Lhalung Monastery

Photo of Lhalung by Sourjya Das

Dhankar Monastery is one of the world's most ancient Buddhism religious communities show today. Dhang implies cliff while Kar implies fortress so Dhankar is a word with signifying 'Fortification on a Cliff'. Dhankar monastery, as far as anyone knows, has been there since 16th century and in ancient times, was used as a jail. Because of the decimating state of the fortification, another Monastery has been produced underneath this unique Monastery.

Location - 34km from Kaza

Things to see - 5 monastery halls, life sized silver picture of Vajradhara, chapel and statue of Dhayan Buddha.

Best time to visit - May to October

How to reach - Local buses run from Kaza twice a day till Schichling and from there, a local vehicle to Dhankar, or a private vehicle from Kaza to Dhankar.

Dhankar Monastery

Photo of Dhankar Monastery, Sichling-Dhankhar Gompa, Dhankhar, Himachal Pradesh, India by Sourjya Das

The Tabo village is an arranged in a leveled valley. The monastery is likewise found at the base of the valley, dislike other monasteries on slope tops. Over the monastery one will experience a few hollows cut inside the cliff. These caverns were implied for meditation. The priests would utilize these caverns. There is an assembly hall inside the caves.

Location - 48km from Kaza

Things to see - cave shrines, painted stupas, 9 temples inside the compound.

Best time to visit - May to October, Chakar festival in September and October

How to reach - From Reckon Peo, there are daily buses to Tabo. From Kaza, one needs to take a private vehicle to Tabo.

Tabo Monastery

Photo of Tabo Monastery, Tabo, Himachal Pradesh, India by Sourjya Das
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