Hemis Festival in Ladakh is celebrated annually on the 10th day of the Tse-Chu, Lunar month of the Tibetan Calendar. The 2-day fiesta marks the birth anniversary of Guru Padmasambhava. On this day, Hemis Monastery is adorned beautifully to host the ceremony. The colorful festival showcases the beautiful handicrafts of the area. Natives also dress up in lovely traditional attires and gather in the courtyard of Hemis monastery, the biggest Buddhist Monastery of Ladakh. Lamas dance around central flagpole to the tunes of drums, cymbals and long horns. The otherwise cold-barren desert comes to life during Hemis Festival.
Hemis Festival date 2019: 11 & 12 July’19
Best time to visit Leh Ladakh: April to September
09 July’19 (Tue) : Arrive Delhi
Today on arrival at Delhi, pick up from airport and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day at leisure. Overnight at hotel.
10 July’19 (Wed) : Delhi/Leh by SG-123(1000/1130)
After breakfast transfer to airport to board the flight to Leh. Leh is main Centre of Ladakh. With the inhabitants of 50,000, Leh is located in small valley just the north of Indus valley. The tourists are advised to take complete rest for the proper acclimatization to the high altitude atmosphere. On arrival at Leh, our local representative will assist you at the airport and transfer to hotel. Rest of the day at leisure. Overnight at hotel.
11 July’19 (Thu) : Leh/Hemis Monastery for the festival/Leh (48 km one way)
After breakfast, proceed to visit the Hemis monastery for the festival and about 3 P.M. in the afternoon drive back to Leh and on the way, the group will visit two more famous monasteries, Shey and Thiksey.
Hemis Monastery: This is biggest and the most important monastery in Ladakh. It is situated 49 kms to south of Leh, a little off the main Leh-Manali road. It was built in the 17th century by Chapgon Gyalshas and ever since has enjoyed the patronage of the royal family.
Thiksey Gompa: En route to Hemis Gompa, the Thiksey monastery is a most imposing structure providing a panoramic view of the green Indus valley from its vantage atop a hill. It has chambers full of statues, stupas and tannkhas.
Shey Palace and Monastery: Also on the way to Hemis Gompa and 15 kms from Leh is the summer palace of the erstwhile, Raja of Leh. Many chortens can be seen to the east of the monastery. Overnight at hotel.
12 July’19 (Fri) : Leh/Lamayuru/Leh (124 Kms one way)
After breakfast proceed for local sightseeing Lamayuru - After exploring villages around the area, it comes as a surprise to find that Lamayuru is a scruffy little place. The gompa is the completely overshadowed and most famous spectacular monastery in Ladakh. On the way also visit the Alchi and Rizong monasteries. After sightseeing return to Leh. Overnight at hotel.
13 July’19 (Sat) : Leh
After breakfast proceed for sightseeing of Leh, covering Sankar monastery, Shanti Stupa, Leh Palace & Leh Monastery. Overnight at hotel.
14 July’19 (Sun) : Leh/Delhi by SG-122 (0740/0920)
After breakfast check out from hotel and transfer to airport to board the flight to Delhi. On arrival, pick up from airport and transfer to hotel. Later proceed to visit Lotus temple - The temple is built in the shape of a floating half open lotus set amidst pools and gardens. Akshardham Temple - the quintessence of the Indian rich legacy, traditions, ancient architecture and everlasting spiritual messages. Overnight at hotel.
15 July’19 (Monday) : Delhi/Agra (210 Kms/4 Hrs)
After breakfast check out from hotel and drive to Agra - beautifully situated on the bank of river Yamuna. On arrival check in at hotel. Later proceed to visit Taj Mahal (Closed on Friday) - one of the seven wonders of the world surely the most extravagant expression of love ever created. 20,000 men laboured for over 17 years to build this memorial to Shah Jahan`s beloved wife. Also visit Agra Fort - the rusty and majestic red-sandstone fort of Agra stands on the banks of the river Yamuna and the construction was started by Emperor Akbar in 1566. Evening free to explore the Agra’s rich heritage of handicrafts in its markets. Overnight at hotel.
16 July’19 (Tue) : Agra/Jaipur via Fatehpur Sikri (250 Kms/5 Hrs)
After breakfast check out from hotel and drive to Jaipur, enroute visit Fatehpur Sikri. After visit continue drive towards Jaipur, on arrival check in at hotel. At evening enjoy Bollywood movie screening at Raj mandir theatre. Overnight at hotel.
17 July’19 (Wed) : Jaipur
After breakfast proceed for excursion of Amber Fort, later visit City Palace & Museum, Hawa Mahal (Palace of Wind) & Solar Observatory (Jantar Mantar). Stop for a photo opportunity in front of Albert Hall museum. At evening attend aarti ceremony at Birla temple. Overnight at hotel.
18 July’19 (Thu) : Jaipur/Delhi (260 kms/6 Hrs.) DEPARTURE
After breakfast check out from hotel and drive to Delhi, on arrival transfer straight to airport to board the flight to onward destination.
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Note : Kindly note distance & driving hours mentioned in the itinerary are approximate, it will be more or less depend on road condition & traffic on any particular day.