All About Shanti Stupa
Shanti Stupa is amongst the prominent attractions of Leh Ladakh which is situated approximately 2 km from the Leh main market. This is a magnificent white dome-shaped Buddhist monument that’s located on the hilltop. The amazing monument is built at an elevation of 3609 m and is a symbol of peace. Moreover, Shanti Stupa also holds a lot of religious importance amongst Buddhists because it holds the relics of Lord Buddha.
Shanti Stupa was made sacred by the Dalai Lama 14th and due to so many important things, it is amongst the most visited places in Ladakh. Its amazing location makes it even more enchanting to visit here. While you reach the upper deck of Shanti Stupa, it looks exceptionally beautiful around. The sweeping view of the surrounding is quite mesmerizing because you have a great view of Zanskar Valley, Leh, and Changspa Village.
Additionally, Shanti Stupa looks extremely beautiful under the white light of the stars and moon. You can take a quick trip to the attraction by simply walking to it. While you visit here, it is very important to follow the rules and regulations that are established by the monks living here. Shanti Stupa is one of those attractions in Leh Ladakh that offers a breathtaking view with serenity. Travelers also offer their prayers to the Buddha statue while visiting here.
History of Shanti Stupa
Shanti Stupa in Leh is a prominent attraction of the union territory which was built in 1991 to promote peace in the world and commemorate the 2500 years of Buddhism. The attraction was built by Japanese Buddhist Bhikshu named Gyomyo Nakamura. The structure was built as a part of the Peace Propaganda Mission.
This place holds a lot of relics related to Buddhism and Dalai Lama 14th visited the monument to bless it. Over the year, this amazing monument has become the epitome of nature’s beauty and religious significance.
The architecture of Shanti Stupa
Like any other attraction of Leh Ladakh, Shanti Stupa too has a flaunting design. There is a Buddhist Stupa that which is a burial mound of Gautam Buddha. It also has some of the oldest stupas related to the Buddist culture. But when you closely have a look at the stupas of this monument, you will notice a slight difference between this and the other in Ladakh. The uniqueness of Shanti Stupa makes it popular amongst history buffs. The carvings and style including the design are so much different from others.
One can see stone pyramids on both sides of the stupa and it consists of approximately 500 steps. The dome is 2-storey tall and has a huge platform under it. The lower section is a sacred site housing multiple relics on the lower floor. On this level, you will also see a Buddha Stature that is embellished with gold. Tourists can also see a Dharmachakra. People spin this wheel by prayer to the lord for their and their family’s prosperity.
On the other hand, the second level is a true depiction of nirvana and moksha. It also is termed as the place of true enlightenment and death of Buddha. While you take around at the upper level, you can enjoy nature’s beauty while praying to the lord.
Timings and Entry Fees of Shanti Stupa
- The open timing of Shanti Stupa is between 5 am to 9 pm. The extended night hours are for the people to enjoy the night view of the stupa.
- Visiting Shanti Stupa is free of cost for all travelers.
- To enjoy your heart out here, approximately 1 hour is going to be more than enough. So you can take a walk from Leh Market and visit here.
- Shanti Stupa is open for tourists throughout the year all days of the week.
Highlights of Shanti Stupa
Shanti Stupa is a famous attraction that we have already known about; but what are the highlights of this monument? Apart from the amazing view, it has on offer from the upper deck; Shanti Stupa also has a great and important collection of relics.
- The Gold deity of Gautam Buddha
- And the architecture of the monument
Places to visit around Shanti Stupa
Shanti Stupa is very well located in Leh city allows people to visit other important destinations around the stupa. One can plan to take a trip to the gompas and palace or the market because all of this is quite accessible from here.
All you need to know is the timing of these attractions. So, do not forget to integrate these other attractions around the Stupa.
Things to do in and around Shanti Stupa
As already established, Shanti Stupa is located at a higher altitude and has a lot of significance for the people of Ladakh. Not just that, but it is a representation of peace that India showcased to the world by making this monument. Here are some amazing things that you can do around the place.
- The stupa is located on a hilltop overlooking the city of Leh and provides a stunning view of the surrounding mountains and valleys.
- Take some time to appreciate the beauty of the landscape and take in the fresh mountain air.
- The Leh Palace is a 17th-century palace located in the city of Leh. It was built by King Sengge Namgyal and served as the residence of the royal family.
- This palace is open to visitors and offers a glimpse into the rich history and culture of Ladakh.
- Hemis Monastery is one of the largest and most important monasteries in Ladakh. It is located about 45 kilometers from Leh and is home to a large collection of ancient Tibetan Buddhist art and artifacts.
- There are several trekking routes around Shanti Stupa, ranging from easy to challenging. You can explore the surrounding mountains and valleys on foot and enjoy the natural beauty of the region.
- Shanti Stupa is a popular spot for Buddhist prayer ceremonies and meditation sessions. Check with the local authorities or the stupa management for any scheduled prayer ceremonies or meditation sessions.
- Leh is known for its handicrafts and souvenirs, including traditional Ladakhi jewelry, Pashmina shawls, and Tibetan prayer flags.
- You can shop for these and other souvenirs at the local markets near Shanti Stupa.
Best time to visit Shanti Stupa
The best time to visit Shanti Stupa is between mid-May and early October. Though visiting the attraction is possible throughout the year but these are the most comfortable months of the year. One can enjoy their time visiting here as the days will be clear and comfortable. The weather will remain calm and enjoyable. Landslides and snowing during this time are very unlikely and have fewer chances.
Must-Know These Travel Tips Before Visit Shanti Stupa
While you visit Shanti Stupa, there are some important and some common things that have to be kept in mind. Not only does this allow the visitors to enjoy their trip to the fullest but gives them a chance to bring back good memories too.
- To reach Shanti Stupa, you will have to trek for quite some time. Therefore, it is advised that you wear comfortable clothes and shoes.
- It is advised to take off your shoes before you enter the main hall/ prayer room/ stupa.
- One should not be under an influence of alcohol any other intoxicating element. If a person gets caught; will have to bear consequences.
- Even smoking on the premises or around the place is offensive and finable.
- Serenity and peace are what define Shanti Stupa; while visiting here, it is advised that you too should be as silent as possible.
- Littering and vandalizing the walls of the stupa is a punishable offense.
- Try not to miss the night view of Shanti Stupa and if possible visit here after sunset.
- Keep yourself hydrated throughout the trip.
- Pets are not allowed inside the stupa, so visitors should not bring any pets with them.
- Shanti Stupa is a place of peace and meditation, so visitors should maintain silence and avoid making loud noises that can disturb others.
- Shanti Stupa is a holy site, so visitors are expected to dress modestly and respectfully. Avoid wearing revealing or inappropriate clothing, such as shorts or sleeveless tops.
- The stupa is home to a community of monks who live in the nearby monastery. Visitors should be respectful towards them and their way of life.