About Alchi Monastery
Resting in the lap of the breathtakingly beautiful Ladakh, the Alchi monastery is one of the most sacred and holy places in the entire world. It was constructed by legendary Guru Rinchen Zangpo between the era of 958 and 1055 AD. Devotees from all across the globe swarm here in search of eternal peace. Revered all over the world as the oldest Buddhist Learning centre in North India, this is definitely a must-visit for all travellers.
What makes it stand out from other Buddhist monuments are the mesmerising carvings on the walls. The complex of the monastery consists of several chortens and temples that belong to different periods of time. The oldest wall paintings of Ladakh have also been well preserved in this monastery. It has also attracted the film fraternity as numerous movies have been shot here like Dil Se and Tashan. Numerous restaurants, tea stalls, souvenir shops and shacks are located near the monastery to promote tourism.
How to Reach Alchi Monastery
There are many ways in which you can easily reach Alchi Monastery with a little planning-
-By Air: The nearest airport to Alchi Monastery is located in Leh, where flights land regularly. Once you reach Leh, you will have to take a taxi or hire a jeep to go to Alchi by road.
-By Road: Travelling the distance between Alchi Monastery and Leh by road is the most feasible option. The road remains closed between November and April, so avoid going during that time.
Best Time to Visit Alchi Monastery
If you are planning on visiting Alchi Monastery, the best month to visit is September. Here are a few other times when you can visit Alchi Monastery-
– Between May and September is when the weather is most manageable, you can visit this monastery. Roads are functional during these months too.
– Roads remain closed from November to April due to snowfall, so those months are best avoided.
– If you want to witness the monastery in all its glory, plan your visit during one of the amazing festivals when the place is bubbling with celebrations. You can plan your visit around the Tibetan new year, Sho Dun, and Chotrul Ducan.
Traveller’s Tips for Visiting Alchi Monastery
If you are planning an amazing trip to Alchi Monastery, make sure to keep a few things in mind-
1. Wear comfortable shoes that can offer you maximum comfort to travel in the high altitude region.
2. Plan for at least a one or two hours of stop at the monastery if you want to experience it properly.
3. The peace and serenity are what makes it a monastery- do not disturb it by talking too loudly.
4. Remember that photography is not allowed inside the monastery.
5. Do not carry any intoxicating substances or food inside the monastery.