The First Journey of My Life Part- I

It was 07 Oct 1987, when we were pushed like animals in Pashchim Express train for Mumbai (Bombay). The crowd in the train was so heavy that, we could not take care of our luggage. We were only praying for our life. Train departed from New Delhi Railway station in the evening around 05’, o clock.

Many people were screaming, “we will fall down, go inside”, but there was no space in the train to move a centimeter. Then he made a vigorous push and we moved a foot further into it. Every movement was by force, individually we were unable to do anything. The train was moving at its speed and we were standing helpless.Train halted many stations but nothing was visible outside due to crowd.

Condition was so bad that we had forgotten our hunger and thirst. Late night when I got slept, I could not remember. Perhaps it might be unconsciousness. Read More…

Visit to a Hill Station-4

The Leh Palace is a 17th-century royal palace and one of the central attractions in Leh. Built under the patronage of King Sengge Namgyal, his family lived here. The nine storeyed Dun-coloured palace now has a museum and a prayer hall, while the main attraction is the extensive view of Leh and the surrounding Zanskar Mountains from the terrace.

Namgyal Tsemo Gompa makes Founded in early 15th century, Namgyal Tsemo monastery in Leh in Ladakh is renowned for its three-storey high solid gold idol of Maitrieya Buddha. Situated on a mountain top behind the Leh palace, the monastery offers panoramic views of the surrounding ountryside, the gently flowing Indus River and the snowcapped peaks of Zanskar range. As a mark of his respect to Buddhism, the king Namgyal Tsemo 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 Likir Monastery is one of the oldest and well maintained monasteries in Ladakh district in Jammu and Kashmir. The main attraction of Likir Monastery is the 75 ft high gold gilded statue of Maitreya Buddha. Likir’s structure has a hierarchy wherein the top of the hill has the main temple and the head lama’s residence, followed by other monk’s residence a little downhill and finally the village quarters at the foothill.

Sankar Monastery is at a walk of around 40 minutes from Leh. It has immense religious significance for the followers of Buddhism, as it’s also the seat of Rinpoche, a high-ranking official of a Buddhist sect.

The monastery is dedicated to Goddess Tara and has a 1000 arm idol of hers. It also houses a library. A two-storey structure. Read More…

Visit to a Hill Station-3

The popular Magnetic Hill of Ladakh is a unique hill where vehicles defy the force of gravity and move upwards on the hill when parked at the marked location. The hill lies at a distance of thirty kilometer from the town of Leh on the Leh-Kargil highway near Pathhar Sahib Gurudwara.

Gurdwara Pathar Sahib, is a beautiful Gurudwara sahib constructed in the memory of Guru Nanak Dev Ji, about twenty five miles away from Leh, on the Leh-Kargil road, 12000 ft above sea level. The Gurdwara was built in 1517 to commemorate the visit to the Ladakh region of Guru Nanak Dev ji, the founder Guru of the Sikh faith. You can see a large stone with the back of “Guru Nanak Dev Ji” and the footprint of the demon on its other side.

I was very excited to be on the highest highway of the world. Khardung La, also known as Khardzong La, is a high mountain pass in Ladakh region of Jammu and Kashmir, near Leh. It serves as the gateway to Shyok and Nubra Valley. Khardung La is popular as the highest motorable road in India at an elevation of 5602 metres.

The Shanti Stupa in Leh is a magnificent white-domed Buddhist monument located atop a steep hilltop at a dizzying height of 11,841 feet. It is a religious place for the Buddhists as it holds the relics of Buddha, consecrated by the 14th Dalai Lama. It is also popular amongst tourists as it offers a sweeping view of Leh and the nearby Changspa village.

Ladakh Festival, organised by the Tourism Department with the help of the locals, aims to promote tourism and the rich culture of the region.

This festival organised in September attracts thousands of tourists from across the globe. Various cultural programs are held such as folk dances, traditional music, Ladakhi food, handicraft products, archery competitions and polo matches. Mask dances are one of the highlights of the festival. This festival is a perfect opportunity for the tourists to discover the culture and lifestyle of the Ladakhi people. Read More…

Visit to a Hill Station-2

I was very eager to see and feel this environment from very closely; thus the next morning I moved along with Indus River, which was flowing by the side of the village. The Indus River is the backbone of Ladakh; historically and presently prominent places and Leh, Basgo and Tingmosgang are located close to the river. It is one of the largest rivers in the world in terms of annual flow. The river has historically been important to many cultures of the region.

I had visited Buddhist Monastery on my day first. This Monastery also called Spituk Gompa, is a Buddhist monastery located about 8 kilometers from Leh. One of the most dazzling monasteries in India, it houses one hundred monks and a giant statue of Goddess Kali. It is famous for its collection of Buddhist objects of antique arms, icon, ancient masks and numerous Thangka paintings.

I saw lots of “Panchakkies” first time in my life alongside of Indus River. There was less water in the river at this time; still flow was very high and its width was very vast.

I had seen apple garden there. These apples are different from Kashmiri apples. These were small and green in colour but very sweet to taste, just like the Ladakhi people. Read More…