15 Most Famous Monasteries in North East India

All over India, the Northeastern part of India is one of the best-known Buddhist pilgrimage spots with an uncounted number of Buddhist monasteries and temples. As we know very well the 7 little sister states of Northeast India are quite famous for their uniqueculture and traditions. Many famous Buddhist monasteries located here address serene spiritualand tranquil vibes.The culture and traditional practices in several monasteries make you experience the divine trans of Buddhism.

Various monasteries located on hilltops, covered by lush greenery and forests, and offering panoramic views take you to a world of pleasantness. Such beautiful and wonderfulmonasteries are immense in Northeast India. Here some of like them famous monasteries of Northeast India listed below. Take a gentle read to know all about them.

1. Rumtek Monastery, Sikkim

Rumtek Monastery familiarly knowns as Dharmachakra Center is the largest and holiest Buddhist monastery in entire Northeast India. Located in eastern Sikkim, this monastery serves as a famous spiritual education center. The monastery dates back to the 9thcentury is an architectural marvel with stunning ancient artifacts and designs, which made you leave in surprise.

In addition to these, the blend of nature with picturesque landscapes, waterfalls, riverside, and mighty mountains offers a peaceful environment to meditate in calm. The major attraction of the monasteryis its Golden Stupa, which holds the relics of the 16th Karmapa and masked dances during Drupchen is also a great attraction to see takes place during May and June.

Best Time to Visit : September and October.

Timings : 6 AM to 6 PM.

2. Tawang Monastery, Arunachal Pradesh

India’s largest and world’s second-largest monastery, Tawang is not an unknown name to Buddhist followers. Located in Tawang Valley of Arunachal Pradesh covered with lush greenery seem to be spectacular and amazing. Throughout Northeast India, the Tawang monastery is such a holiest and must-visit Buddhist monastery. It’s a three-storey high monastery and also comprises 65 residential buildings. Torgya festival celebrates every year in the monastery is a great event to visit.

The monastery comprises a main assembly hall known as Dukhang, a library, and a court. Notably, its library had a great collection of ancient and Buddhist manuscripts. The Thangka paintings of this monastery are also great attractions, which were painted with the blood of the fifth Dalai Lama extracted from the nose.

Best Time to Visit : Summers and monsoons.

Timings : 5 PM to 12 AM.

3. Pemayangtse Monastery, Sikkim

With the fantastic backdrop of India’s highest mountain peak Mount Kanchenjunga, Pemayangtse is a wonderful monastery to visit in Northeast India. In Sikkim, Pemayangtse is the oldest monastery built in the 17th century by Lhatsum Chenpo. For Bhutia monks, this monastery is the home from many centuries ago. With the orders of this monastery, all Tibetan Buddhist monasteries of Nyingma will be run.

The things here attracts everyone are historic paintings, sculptures of Lord Padamasambhava’s, ornate designs, and beautiful golden rooftop. Cham Dance festival of this monastery is a very popular one to attend.

Best Time to Visit : March and May.

Timings : 9 AM to 6 PM.

4. Phodong Monastery, Sikkim

Located on a hilltop at an altitude of 4500ft, Phodong Monastery is one of the well-known Buddhist monasteries in Sikkim and also home to 260 monks of Kagyu lineage. The monastery was built in the 18thcentury by the 9th Karmapa when he visited Sikkim. The architectural styles of the monastery with vibrant murals, paintings, and frescos add more beauty. But an earthquake devasted the monastery very badly. After it underwent for revamping works and then opened for people in 1977.What’s the major attraction of this monastery means, its Loosang festival takes place around December is the best one to take part in.

Best Time to Visit : March to May and October to December.

Timings : 9 AM to 5 PM.

5. Lachen Monastery, Sikkim

Lachen, a small and beautiful monastery in Sikkim with splendidbackdrops sounds amust-visit popular Buddhist pilgrimage site in Northeast India.The monastery was initially a small hut later it was developed into a monastery and this monastery dates back 1858 built by the Nyingma Buddhism sect.This monastery houses anidol of Guru Padmasambhava.

Lachenmonastery spread with different colorful Buddhist flags and prayer wheels bring a live spiritualfeeling. During Losoong and Saga Dawafestivals the monastery looksmore beautiful with full of festivities.

Best Time to Visit : March to June.

Timings : 6 AM to 6 PM.

6. Tashiding Monastery, Sikkim

Nestled on a hilltop stuck between Rathong and Ranjit Rivers, Tashiding monastery in Sikkim is a lovely old charm monastery.This small and beautiful monastery in Sikkim is one of the sacred monasteries of Northeast India. There is a belief also that here we can cleanse all our sins who feel apologize.Bhumchu festival of the monastery takes place every1stmonth of the Tibetan calendar, a worthy one to attend.

The 17thcentury Vihara in this monastery is a great attraction to see here. It showcases the stone plates of Buddhist inscriptions. By the way,the monastery surrounded byexquisite landscapes and snow-clad mountains offers a good time to spend.

Best Time to Visit : Winters.

Timings : 7 AM to 7 PM.

7. Enchey Monastery, Sikkim

Very close to Gangtok, EncheyMonastery is a popular ancient Buddhist monastery built-in 1909and it belongs to the Nyingma sect of Vajrayana Buddhism. The monastery lookslike a Chinese Pagoda with the walls adorned with colorful paintings, pictures, scriptures, murals,andintricate designs.Festivals of the monastery like Losoong and Losar take up the celebrations to a high extent throughout the valley.

Apart from the monastery, the lovely environment around the monastery with portraits of snow-clad mountains and beautiful lush green Gangtok valley makesus meditate in a serene atmosphere.

Best Time to Visit : September and October.

Timings : 4 AM to4 PM.

8. Samdruptse Monastery, Sikkim

The monastery is quite famous for its massive and vigorous statue of Guru Padmasambhava and Samdruptsehillmeans “Wishfulfilling hill”.This iconic monastery was built in the 20thcentury. The statue of Guru Padmasambhava heights 45mts tall coated with gold and its shimmerings when light falls grabs everyone’s attention. In addition to all these, the lush greenery and thick forests surrounded the monastery are the other great attractions to witness here.

Local tales about the hill describes it is a sleeping volcano,the Buddhistlamas prayed and made the volcano inactive.

Best Time to Visit : June.

Timings : 9 AM to 5:30 PM.

9. Ghoom Monastery, Darjeeling

Also known as Yiga Choeling Monastery, the Ghoom monastery of Darjeeling is a popular oldest Buddhist monastery to visit here. The monastery was established in 1850 by a Mongolian astrologer. What’s the major attraction of the monastery is its 15ft tall Buddha statue adorned with gold and precious gems.The entire monastery decorated with arts and paintings, thangkas, drums, bells, Buddhist manuscripts, and scrolls, etc shares a lot of knowledge about Buddhism.

Best Time to Visit : Throughout the year.

Timings : 12 AM to 12 PM.

10. Dubdi Monastery, Sikkim

Dubdi monastery of Sikkim perched at a height of 7,000ft above sea leveland surrounded by lush greenery forests and snow-clad mountains offers a great treat to devotees to enjoy the serenity of the place. The monastery is a two-storied structured complex comprised of Buddhist manuscripts, portraits of saints, and other divine related symbols, etc. A visit to this monastery is a combination of divine and nature blessing trip in Northeast India. Such a beautiful and pretty monastery inSikkim to visit blessed with nature.

Best Time to Visit : March to May.

Timings : 7 AM to 4 PM.

11. Ralong/ Ralang Monastery, Sikkim

Ralongor Ralangmonastery of Sikkim just a few kilometers away from Ravanglais a well-known and must-visit monastery. This monastery is located in Southern Sikkim under the Kagyu sect of Tibetan Buddhism. In this monastery, Buddhist artworks are the major attractions to visit the monastery. The monastery adorned with various collections of paintings, thangkas, and beautiful architecture showcases the richness of Buddhist art.

The annual festival of this monastery Pang Lhabsoltakes place during August is a great and unique festival to experience the monastery’s different festivities.

Best Time to Visit : April to June.

Timings : 8 AM to 5 PM.

12. Lingdum Monastery, Gangtok

Lingdum monastery also known as the Ranka monastery in Gangtok is one of the beautiful monasteries to visit in Northeast India. It is like a baby monastery which was built in 1999 that’s why this monastery doesn’t have any historical significance compared to other monasteries in Northeast India. However, the monastery covered by thick green forests and mountains offers a good environment to cost your valuable time.

The monastery is home to many young lamas who are getting trained here, you can spare sometime to talk with them. The other attractions of the monastery are the walls with intricate hand paintings and thangkas, a retreat center, prayer hall portraying excellent views of the hilltop, etc.

Best Time to Visit : March to May and Septemeber to October.

Timings : 6 AM to 6 PM.

13. Sinon Monastery, Sikkim

Sinon monastery constructed in the year 1761 under PediWangmo is a famous monastery to visit in Western Sikkim. The name Sinon means ‘the suppressor of intense fear” it means it is like an iconic monastery stands to protect. This monastery follows distinctive Buddhist architecture decorated with vibrant colors of red and other colors, which are very similar to Ajanta caves. Spiritually, the Sinon monastery is an important Buddhist pilgrimage spot in Northeast India.

Best Time to Visit : Throughout the year.

Timings : 9 AM to 5 PM.

14. Phensang Monastery, Sikkim

Among the several largest monasteries in Sikkim, the Phensang monastery is the best-rated Buddhist monastery. Located on a hilltop and surrounded by lush greenery,the monastery address true spiritual vibes. This monastery was built by 3rd Lhatsun Jigmed Pawo in 1721 AD when he visited Sikkim. What’s the major attraction of this monastery means, it is home to a large number of monks compared to many monasteries. Nearly 300 lamas of the Nyingmapa Buddhist reside in this monastery. Spiritually and naturally, Phensang is a must-visit monastery to relax and meditate.

Best Time to Visit : March to May and October to December.

Timings : 8 AM to 5 PM.

15. Rinchenpong Monastery, Sikkim

The Rinchenpong monastery located between two twin villages at an altitude of 1700 mts in West Sikkim is a remarkable one to visit. This monastery was built by NgadakpaLama in 1730and it is the 3rdoldest monastery in Sikkim. The main attraction of this monastery is the statue of Buddha known as Ati Buddha or Adi Buddha, which is rare to see in all monasteries. The Ati Buddha statue will be in the form of Yab- Yum position, it means Primordial Buddha called true Buddha. Another attraction of this monastery is the lining of colorful prayer flags, which drew your attention towards them.

Best Time to Visit : April to June.attention towards

Timings : 6 AM to 6 PM.

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