Namgyal Tsemo Monastery above Leh

Likir Monastery near Leh

Shergol Monastery across the Wakha river on the Kargil – Leh highway

Diskit Monastery in the Nubra Valley

Lamayuru Monastery

Basgo Monastery and Palace complex

Chemrey Monastery near Leh

Thiksey Monastery near Leh

Stupas have been a part of the traditional Indian Buddhism as repository of the mortal remains of Buddha. In Ladakh, construction of stupa is an act of piety. Both large elaborate ornate stupas have been constructed as well as more modest structures, and at the lowest level are the pile of stones and flat pebbles that reiterate the builder’s belief in the religion.

Row of magnificent stupas near Leh

Small stupa or Chorten near Basgo

Another revered concept in Ladakh Buddhism is Bodhisatva, an enlightened soul capable of Nirvana but opting to stay back in the world in order to help others on the path to Buddhahood. Many monasteries also have a figure of Maitreya Buddha outside and facing the Gompa. This version of Buddha is the future Buddha who the scriptures predict will come back for the salvation of mankind, once the teachings of Buddha have been forgotten.

Maitreya Buddha statue outside Diskit Monastery