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Phuktal Monastery

Discussion in 'Jammu & Kashmir' started by PiyushH, Jun 13, 2016.

  1. PiyushH

    PiyushH New Member

    One of the places which I wish to visit is Phuktal Monastery, which is in the Leh-Ladakh region. I have been to Leh before but unfortunately did not get the opportunity to visit the monastery. The monastery is quite a distance from Leh and if I wanted to visit it would have been a touch and go trip which was not valid.

    This time, I wish to visit the Phuktal Monastery with peace and explore the Zanskar area where the monastery is. I need some advice from fellow members and from those who know about the Phuktal Monastery and its surrounding area.

    1. How far is Leh from Phuktal Monastery and how long will it take to get there?

    2. Where can we stay when we reach Phuktal Monastery or the Zanskar region?

    3. Would you recommend a small itinerary for the Zanskar region?

    4. There is some annual festival in Zanskar, when is this?

    5. I believe you need to trek to the Phuktal Monastery, how long is this trek?

    6. What are the timings for the monastery?

  2. briannagodess

    briannagodess Well-Known Member

    Hi and welcome to the forum!

    I'll try my best to answer your questions.

    Phuktal Monastery is about 410.9 kms away from Leh if you take the Manali route, so that's about 12 to 13 hours. It is about 557.4 kms away from Leh if you take the Srinagar route, so that's about 13 to 14 hours.

    The Phuktal Monastery is cut off from civilisation that there are no accommodations just nearby it. Alternatively, you can opt to stay in the monastery itself. Just make sure to inform the staff beforehand so they can assist you and tell you if there are any rooms available.

    Again, there are also no accommodations in the Zanskar region. Tourists opt to setup their own tents to sleep for the night. Downside is, you cannot use the bathrooms or even have restaurants to have your meals.

    You can choose to find accommodations in Leh or Padum. In these places, there are resorts, hotels, homesteads and guest houses.

    Here's a possible itinerary for you:
    • Day 1 - Travel to Kargil: En route visit the Basgo Fort, the Lamayuru Monastery and Fotu La.
    • Day 1 (Night) - Arrive at Kargil: Spend the night at a hotel. Rest for the night.
    • Day 2 - Visit the Suru Valley and the twin peaks of Nun and Kun.
    • Day 3 - Reach Rangdum and visit its fort. Arrive by Pensi La Pass during late afternoon.
    • Day 4 - Travel to Padum, explore the villages en route. Arrive by late afternoon or early evening.
    • Day 5 - En route to Hanumil, visit the Zanskar River, Pibiting and Karsha gompas and the Zanla Fort.
    There's the Chudsum Chodpa held during the month of March. It is a celebration for the 13 deities of the gompa. Another one is the Chonga Chodpa which is a harvest festival celebrated just after the Chudsum Chodpa. Syungnas and Yarnas Festivals are held during the months of July to September. The Smonlam Chenmo is celebrated during the end of February or the beginning of March. Its ceremonies are for the welfare of the people and peace.

    The trek to reach Phuktal Monastery can take as long as a day. It can be a little challenging trek as you traverse mountains, rivers and villages.

    The monastery is open everyday from 6 am to 4 pm so make sure to schedule your trip accordingly to these times.

    I hope this helps!