Leh Things to Do

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Best Rated Things to Do in Leh

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    Day trip to Alchi and Likir......

    by mantru Updated Jul 29, 2007

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    On the way to Likir
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    A day visit to Likir and Alchi village is a must.....both are very scenic..sleepy village...you get to see the mud larger than life statues......the older ones are at Alchi i fell in love with Alchi..read my alchi and Likir pages........whereever u go u get to hear the gushing waters from the icy mountains running their course thru the villages..........the wall paintings at Likir is a must see they look fresh must have been redone............

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    Local houses -literally four quarters

    by mantru Updated Jul 29, 2007

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    have a look at the local houses at the hillside opposite to leh palace,it kind of looks cute blocks on the hills...i wanted to have a look at it so on the way back from khardungla,i asked our driver to stop near those huts...i climbed the hills,passed by houses near the road the huts looked like store rooms ,i dont know how people live there it looked like 4/4 feet rooms,but no sign of people living i asked a local who said people live there .....due to scarcity of land people constructed these room like structures all over the hills...just have a look at those structures..and you'll know what i mean...

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    Khardungla- Highest Road in India

    by abi_maha Written Sep 15, 2011

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    Us at Khardung La
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    We headed from Leh into Khardung La (Khardung Pass, la means pass in Tibetan), with an elevation of 5359 m or 17,582 feet it is the highest motorable road in India. Thankfully by the time we reached Khardung la, we were more acclimatized to the heights and we really enjoyed this trip!! We stayed for almost 40 minutes on the pass thanks to some glorious weather. Some of our military comrades made it all the more memorable by teaching us some Ladakhi dance! The canteen has some awesome noodles and hot tea. You can even try some Momos there.
    The pass on the Ladakh Range lies north of Leh and is the gateway to the Shyok and Nubra valleys. The Siachen Glacier lies partway up the latter valley but we didn't go all the way there. Built in 1976, it was opened to motor vehicles in 1988 and has since seen many automobile, motorbike and mountain biking expeditions. Maintained by the Border Roads Organisation, the pass is strategically important to India as it is used to carry supplies to the Siachen Glacier.
    Khardong La is historically important as it lies on the major caravan route from Leh to Kashgar in Chinese Central Asia. About 10,000 horses and camels used to take the route annually, and a small population of Bactrian camels can still be seen at Hundar, in the area north of the pass. But these animals are now largely there for commercial riding and while I normally don't enjoy such activities, this time around I did! More on that in another tip.
    One caveat is that while the roads in leh/Ladakh are generally of excellent quality, the route to the passes are tough. 5 Kms to and from the pass are largely just roads on loose boulders and so do be mentally prepared for the same.

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    Thiksey Monastery

    by norain Updated May 21, 2007

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    Thiksey is one of the finest example of Ladakhi architecture. This Gompa is situated on the top of the hill. The main prayer hall has a 15 mt high seated Buddha figure.
    The 12 storey monastery complex contains numerous stupas, statues, thankas, wall paintings, swords and a large pillar engraved with the Buddha's teachings,there are sacred shrines and a many precious objects to be seen.
    The main prayer hall has a 15 mt high seated Buddha figure,There are chance to see prayer in the early morning.

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    Visit Tsokar

    by abi_maha Written Sep 25, 2011

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    AJ n me at Tsokar
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    On the way back from Tsomoriri to Leh we took a necklace route and returned via Tsokar. The lake in itself had shrunk since the last time some thers had been there..but it is one place where you can get some picture perfect reflections! We reach Tsokar just before we reach Taglang la. Just as we passed the viewpoint the guys found a yak carcass and even posed with that!! There was a well that was full of carcasses..our driver said this yak could have only been brought down by a snow leopard...wonder if that was true..??
    Tsokar is much much smaller than Tsomoriri or Pangong, it is located in the Rupshu valley. Rocks at the viewpoint have tibetian mantras engraved in them! There were 9 mountains flanking the lake all with snow capped peaks.

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    Wild Ass -Near Tsokar

    by abi_maha Written Sep 25, 2011

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    In the valley as we were driving up to Tsokar we spotted a herd of wild ass. They run into ladakh from China since they are hunted there for their meat. These creatures are so beautiful and as the ran by our van it was a memorable sight to see these powerful creatures!!

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    Jama Masjid

    by call_me_rhia Written Aug 25, 2003

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    Leh's mosque

    After so many Buddhist temples - why not visit a mosque? The one in Leh is small but quite charming - and it's the prayer place of the resident Kashmiri population. It was built in the 17th century and has some distincive Ladakhi traits, like the carved roof beams.

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    Leh Palace

    by call_me_rhia Written Aug 25, 2003

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    Leh Palce seen from Leh town

    Leh Palace is an imposing palace towering over Leh town - it's also a 9 storey high empty shell - but a beautiful one. It was built in the 16th century by King Singe Namgyal and it still belongs to the royal family, who doesn't live there anyway. The Palace, often locked, has a museum with some tangkhas and paintings. However this is not what makes your visit worthwhile: the highlight is the view you get over Leh town - which is particularly suggestive at dusk. The lane that leads you up there starts from Main Bazaar - just ask around for its precise starting point.

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    the Post Office

    by call_me_rhia Written Aug 25, 2003

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    queuing up at Leh's post office

    If, in the world, there's a post office that looks quaint, it must be the one in Leh. What I mean by quaint is: small, old and inefficient-looking. I never quite managed to figure out the opening hours. When I found it open, they had run out of the proper stamps. And yet - in spite of it all, it turned out to be really efficient: not only all the postcards that we handed in were sent - but they reached home in record time. Moral of the story: never judge a book by its cover

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    Thiksey Monastery

    by anilpradhanshillong Written Nov 20, 2011

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    For Thiksey monastery, you retrace your steps towards Leh from Hemis monatery. On the way back, there’s a sudden right turn. You take that turn and the imposing mountain with the monastery suddenly hits you between the eyes. The village of Thiksey is barely 20 kms east of Leh. The first sight is an impressive one as the entire mountain appears to be a cluster of houses. Perched atop the mountain is the monastery, a replica of the famous Potala of Lhasa. Founded in the 15th. Century by Paldan Sherab, the nephew of Sherab Zangpo, the monastery belongs to the Gelugpa order.

    By the time you reach this monastery after Hemis, you’ll be starving. Luckily, once you enter the intricately carved iron gate, there’s a good restaurant on your left. There are also some rooms here that may be rented out. A huge prayer wheel is to your left as you climb up the steep steps to the main courtyard. To your immediate right is the Maitreya temple which houses the exquisite Maitreya (future Buddha) statue. The statue was completed only in 1981 and is three-storeyed high (15 m; 50 ft.). You view it from the top floor. When you go close enough to the statue and look down, you see the Buddha in the classic ‘lotus’ pose with both soles of the feet facing the ceiling.
    Next to this is the Dolma Lhakhang room with its 21 images of Tara and of Avalokiteswara and Tsongkhapa. These are all encased in glass-covered shelves so switch off your flash while taking photos of these images.

    Right across the courtyard is the Dukhang or Assembly Hall where the monks pray. It also houses rare religious scriptures, images of Sakyamuni Buddha and other paintings on the walls. Next to it, on the second floor, is the Gonkhang. This has images of other deities like Vajrabhairava, Paldan Lhamo and of Chamring. Some beautiful paintings adorn the walls.

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    Thiskey monastry

    by mantru Written Sep 25, 2007

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    thiskey
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    Situated at an altitude of 3600 m above sea level, the monastery of Tiksey is situated about 20 km far from the town of Leh and ranks among the most important monasteries in Ladakh. It is the seat of Tiksey Rinpoche, the main leader of the Gelug School in Ladakh and is the main and leading monastery for more than ten other famous Ladakhi monasteries such as Diskit, Spituk, Likir, and Stok. It is believed that in the early 15th century, Tsongkhapa, the founder of the reformed Gelug School, sent six of his disciples to remote regions of Tibet to spread the teachings of the new school. One of these six was known as Sherab Sangpo. He went to Ladakh and was the founder of a small monastery at the end of a valley in the village called Stagmo. Palden Sangpo, Sherab's disciple carried on with the work of his teacher and he was the one who founded the Thiksey monastery a few miles away from Stagmo near the River Indus on a sacred hill above a village of the same name.

    Housing one of the largest Buddhist statues, the 15 metre tall Champa, the Buddha of Future and located strategically, today, Thiksey is one of the most frequently visited and most photogenic monasteries in Ladakh. About a hundred monks live here. Ngawang Champa Tenzin, born in 1943, places a great emphasis on preservation of the traditional ways of running the monastery and continues to teach both monks and lay villagers. A former member of Indian Parliament, he has helped greatly towards establishing the village school called Lamsang, which is one of the prestigious Ladakhi Lamdon schools. Thiksey is one of the finest examples of Ladakhi architecture. This Gompa is situated on the top of the hill and forms part of Gelukpa order. The 12-storey monastery complex contains numerous stupas, statues, thankas, wall paintings, swords and a large pillar engraved with the Buddha's teachings apart from the sacred shrines and other precious objects to be seen.

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    Spituk Monastry

    by mantru Written Sep 25, 2007

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    inside spituk monastry
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    This monastery is built on a lone rocky hill on the right bank of Indus, eight km away from the town of Leh towards Srinagar. It is one of the most influntial monastries of the 'Yello Hat' the Ge-lugs-pa order has as its subsidary, the Shankar Gompa. Built in the 15th century on the ruins of a 11th century gompa, the Spituk gompa has as its abbot the Kushak Bakula( Kushak is an incarnate head lama of a monastry who has attained highest form of training of Buddhism).The dhukhang has a veranda with the usual frescos of the Wheel of Life and other Buddhist symbols. The kangyur and Tangyur lie stacked on one side, while wall paintings adorn the walls. Statues of the Avalokiteswara and Yamantaka stand on either side of te seat of Dalai Lama and Kushak Bakula. On the altar can be seen standing the statues of the fifth Dalai Lama and the 18th Kushak Bakula, along with those of Sakyamuni and another Buddha.

    There are some interesting rooms which contain some very old and rare statues and other articles, but unfortunately now these are closed as some things were stolen.

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    must go Pangong lake

    by mantru Written Jul 21, 2007

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    Pangong tso
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    One of the must go to places is the pangong lake.....the crystal blue salty water is a wow...the backdrop of the barren mountains...white clouds floating above......and the deep blue waters......you'll hold your breath when u see it for the first time........however to reach there and back takes an awful lot of time.........i mean driving on a bumpy road.....

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    Gurudwara Shri Pathar Sahib

    by anilpradhanshillong Updated Nov 21, 2011

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    Thereafter, you carry on to Gurudwara Shri Pathar Sahib (‘pathar’=’stone’), about 25 kms from Leh on the Leh-Srinagar road. This place of worship is dedicated to Guru Nanak who is believed to have visited Ladakh in 1571. Legend has it that at this place, when Guru Nanak was meditating, a demon who had bedevilled the local villagers, pushed a huge boulder to crush the Guru. Certain that the dark deed had been done, when the demon descended to the place where the Guru was meditating, he was astonished to find the Guru still alive. Angered beyond measure, the demon pushed the boulder upon the Guru with his foot. He was even more bewildered when he found that the boulder had turned into wax. When he begged for mercy, the Guru advised him to spend the rest of his life serving mankind. The boulder, which is now in the gurdwara, has the imprints of the Guru’s back and of the demon’s foot. The large hall adjacent to the prayer room has the pictures of all the major gurudwaras in India. On Baisakhi day (April 13th.), an annual festival is held here. On Sundays, a kirtan is held, followed by a community lunch. A washroom within the Gurudwara premises, is a thoughtful gesture.

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    Tsemo Gompa

    by anilpradhanshillong Written Nov 21, 2011

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    Once you reach Leh, head straight for the Tsemo Gompa located on Namgyal Peak (Victory Peak) and the Khar or Lachen Palkhar or Royal Palace. The monastery, the fort and the red Maitreya temple, are all in ruins though attempts are being made now by the ASI to renovate these ancient heritage buildings. Further down, and merging with the Leh market place, is the unmistakable Royal Palace. The Gonkhang or Temple of Guardian Divinities contains the 6-armed Mahakala, the Vajra-Bhairava and Dharma-raja with his consort. This is a dark room and taking photographs without a flash is a difficult proposition.

    The nine-storied palace was constructed by Sengge Namgyal, one of the greatest rulers of Ladakh, in the late 1630s. The palace has 9 storeys as 9 is an auspicious number in Tibetan Buddhism. Though the palace is in ruins now, one room houses some rare photographs of a bygone era. From the balcony, the view of Leh town and of the snow-capped mountains, is awe-inspiring.

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