The ancient structure lies on the way to Thiksey and Hemis Monastery and is at an altitude of around 11200 feet above the sea level. This is considered as one of the spectacular monasteries in Northern India. Shey Monastry shares a distance of 15 km from the city Leh and is situated at a solitary hillock. This large monastery was founded in the sixteenth century AD by Lhachen Palgyigon, the first king of Ladakh as the residence of the royal family and thus this monastery is also known as
by the local residents. The
The main attraction of the monastery is the 10 meters high gigantic copper-gold gilded statue of a seated Shakyamuni Lord Buddha. This very statue is said to be the second Buddha statue in Ladakh. There is one more stone-carved towering statue of Lord Buddha inside the temple. Plenty of Chortens containing the ashes of royal dignitaries and Lamas can be found around the Dresthang Gompa.
Tourist Attractions in Shey Monastery
There are two major celebrations take place at
Shey Doo Lhoo and Shey Suey Rupla. Shey Doo Lhoo takes place on the 26th and 27th day of the first Tibetan month (most probably July or August). This festival is to celebrate the beginning of the sowing season. In these two days, monks perform < special rituals in the monastery along with other religious rites. Every year a number of tourists across the globe visit this monastery to experience such unique celebration in the lap of mountains. An oracle reader visits the
during the festival riding a horse. He conducts prayer for three days and goes into a trance. The reader is believed to utter the prophecies for the upcoming year.
The second ceremony is Shey Rupla. This celebration is to welcome the harvesting season. During this festival, the farmers dedicate their first fruit to the Lord Buddha. Famous dance Rhupal Dance is then performed by dancers wearing tiger costumes. Else other types of dance performances are also performed. If you do not want to experience these rituals you can simply pass your time by viewing amazing Buddha statues in the monastery.