Ladakh is a stunning destination in every possible way. An epitome of nature’s beauty, traveling to Ladakh during a festive time is the cherry on the top, as that period is a terrific opportunity to explore this destination and know about its refined nuances.
And one such festival of Ladakh which comes across as a contributing factor for knowing Ladakh is Galdan Namchot. It is a festival where colorful dramas are performed by the monks honoring Je Tsongkhapa, along with many other activities.
For the unversed, Je Tsongkhapa was fundamentally a monk who was a Tibetian scholar and was no less than a living example of Buddhahood.
History of Galdan Namchot
It is said that Je Tsongkhapa was born in Amdo, Tibet sometime in 1357. Owing to his wisdom, he was considered one of the most revered men of his time. He also taught Tibetan Buddhism to people and also was responsible for the formation of the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism.
Galdan Namchot celebrates the birthday as well as the death anniversary of Je Tsongkhapa.
Major Attractions of Galdan Namchot 2023
If you are looking for how Galdan Namchot is celebrated then, you should know the celebrations happen on a grand scale and people participate with great enthusiasm. As part of the celebrations relating to this Buddhist festival, one can witness the monasteries and residential buildings lit up in the exuberance of festive lights.
People also kindle the butter lamps which, symbolically, signify the victory of light over darkness. Apart from this, people prepare many exotic traditional dishes such as Thukpa, Momos, Butter Tea. There are also dance dramas that are essentially performed by the monks who dress up in colorful robes.
How to Reach Ladakh
Ladakh is one of the most amazing travel getaways to explore around and breathe in. It is located at an approximate distance of around 1,098 km, 2,511 km, 3,280 km, 2,632 km from Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, and Kolkata. Let’s discuss how you can reach Ladakh via the following routes.
The nearest airport is the Kashuk Bakula Rimpochee Airport IXL which is located in Leh. This airport is considered the 22nd highest commercial airport globally located at an immense height of 3,256 m above sea level. This airport was named after the 19th Kushok Bakula Rinpoche who was also an Indian statesman and a monk.
Another important point to note here is the fact that due to the presence of the mountain winds during the afternoon, all the flights take off and land during the morning hours only. And due to its scenic location between the Himalayas, the tourists get to witness quite a scenic landing.
Various airlines like GoAir, Air India, and SpiceJet operate to and fro Leh connecting cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chandigarh. After deboarding your flight, you will have to hire a cab to reach your respective destination.
It is important to note that Leh Ladakh doesn’t have direct railway connectivity. Some good options to reach Leh Ladakh via train routes are Jammu Tawi railway station, Pathankot, Kalka railway station, and Chandigarh railway station. However, after deboarding at these stations, you will need to cover a considerable amount of distance, thus it is recommended to travel by train only if your destination is nearby the train stations.
Generally, out of these, the best option to reach via train is considered the Jammu Tawi Railway station. From Delhi, you can board the Jammu Rajdhani or SVDK VANDEBHARAT from New Delhi Railway Station. From Amritsar, you can board BTI JAT EXP from Amritsar Junction. From Kanpur, you can take TATA JAT Exp from Kanpur Central.
Being one of the three highest mountain passes in the world, Leh, Ladakh is already a very popular travel destination, especially among bikers. There are mainly two popular routes to visit Leh. One is Srinagar – Sonmarg – Zozi La – Drass – Kargil – Mulbek – Lamayaru – Saspol – Leh.
And the second one is Manali – Rohtang – Gramphu – Kokhsar – Keylong – Jispa – Darcha – Zingzingbar – Baralacha La – Bharatpur – Sarchu – Gata Loops – Nakee La – Lachulung La – Pang – Tanglang La – Gya – Upshi – Karu – Leh.
Both of these routes are famous among tourists who have an inclination towards seeking adventure. The Leh-Manali route is managed by the Border Roads Organization of the Indian Army. While taking this particular route you can consider halting at Sarchu which is a very beautiful place having some good staying options as well.
Another important fact to note here is that all non-HP vehicles will need to obtain a permit from the Manali SDM office for traveling beyond Rohtang pass. This decision was brought into effect owing to the increasing number of traffic jams on this route.