Hemis Monastery, the largest of all the monasteries in Ladakh, is the venue ground of the auspicious Hemis Festival. A two-day celebration, this festival commemorates the birth anniversary of Guru Padmasambhava or the reincarnated form of Lord Buddha.

The Hemis Festival in Ladakh is a true extravagant event that is included in almost all the Leh Ladakh tour packages, and is equally enjoyed by the visitors. While vising the monastery during this sacred festival, visitors can witness a large number of local as well as other crowd enjoying Hemis Festival with equal zest and vigour.

Celebrated within the main courtyard of Hemis Monastery in Ladakh, the main highlight of this sacred event is the ‘Chham Dance’ (or the Mask Dance) after the head lamas of the monastery worships the portrait of Guru Padmasambhava. Once everyone takes blessing from the lord, the Chham performers present their livelier dance performances. The locals attend this pious festival in Ladakh with a lifted spirit and comes in their most colourful garbs.

Through the dance performance, the dancers depict how Lord Padmasambhava attained victory over the evils and protected the entire valley from the negative energy. Though Hemis Festival in Ladakh is an annual festival, it gets more exciting every 12 years when the two-storeyed high ‘Thangka’ of Guru Padmasambhava is displayed publicly.

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