Tsemo Gompa & Monastery
Namgyal Hill, Leh 194101,Ladakh, India
Tsemo monastery is situated on a mountain top behind the Leh palace, the
monastery offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside, the gently
flowing Indus river and the snowcapped peaks of Zanskar range.
The gompa was founded by King Tashi Namgyal in 1430 AD who was a big
follower of Buddhism. As a mark of his respect to Buddhism, the king built
the monastery above his palace. Situated at the cliff of Namgyal hill, its
architecture is impressive.
View of Leh from the gompa is breathtaking as the view changes with light.
The monastery is a favourite with photographers too.
The gompa has assembly hall and temple with frescoes, paintings and statues
of Buddhas. The gold idol of Maitreya Buddha (future Buddha) is three-storey
high. The monastery is also noted for one-storey high statues of
Avalokitesvara and Manjushri.
Down the hill
side there is Shankar gompa which is also associated with Namgyal Tsemo
monastery. It is a daily ritual followed by monks from Shankar gompa to
worship Buddha and light butter lamps at Namgyal Tsemo. Visitors are allowed
into the monastery only during morning and evening.
The nine-storey high Namagyal Tsemo palace is also one of the major
The best season to visit the monastery is between June and September as rest
of the months, roads are snowbound and the region becomes inaccessible.