Ladakh trip Day 9:18th July – (River rafting and visit to Alchi monastery)

Today was exciting. We started the day with river rafting and I have been told that Ladakh is the only place in the country where you can raft on the Indus river. I must say that I didn’t find the rafting experts here as professional as the ones I had found in Rishikesh. Our rafting experience was pretty amazing though. We started from a point in Phey village and rafted till Nimmu. We were told that it covered nearly 30 kms and took us a good 3 hours to complete. The rapids were very normal if compared to the ones in Rishikesh (where we have the great seven). Also the colour of the water here is muddy as compared to the bluish green waters of Rishikesh. But then the rafting through the Indus river with high cliff walls on sides and witnessing the merger of Indus with Zanskar is unforgettable. We reached Nimmu for lunch and then proceeded to Alchi Gompa.

Alchi Gompa is really unusual as it is not built on a hill, but is situated within the Alchi village. It is one of the oldest Gompas in Ladakh is believed to be founded in the early 11th century by Ringchen Zangpo. The story of Ringchen Zangpo and the origin of this monastery is really interesting. This monastery is also of much significance because it is the only Gompa in Ladakh which represents the Indian Buddhism as opposed to the Tibetan Buddhism. It is said that many artists from Kashmir and Tibets were employed in its construction. Its stunning murals are of great artistic importance and all the five separate temples contain them in various styles.

I must mention that the straight road in Likir on your way to Alchi is really a sight of wonder! It’s as straight as a ruler and can be a beautiful spot to see the sunset. On our way back we even passed through the magnetic hill. Its quite debatable whether it’s an illusion or reality. Must visit these places on your way back to Leh.

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~ by rb on July 26, 2010.

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