The vibrant and captivating festivals of Ladakh
Ladakh is one such place in which every occasion be it birth, marriage, or commemoration, is marked by singing, dancing and feasting and this forms a very essential part of their living heritage. The most important fiesta celebrated extensively in Ladakh is the monastic festivals in which monks wear facial masks and colorful silk garments. Here’s a list of some of the important
Festivals in Ladakh:
The month of June is marked by the important monastic festival, Hemis festival Ladakh. This occasion is celebrated to honor the founder of Tibetan Tantric Buddhism, Guru Padmasambhava. People take part in the gala by wearing vibrant facial masks, and multihued brocade robes. The event takes place from 9th to 11th June, and the special attraction of this event is the performance of sacred dance dramas.
Traditions associated with Leh festivals
One of the most famous Ladakh festivals celebrated in Deskit, Liker and Leh is Dosmochey. Every year in February people rejoice in the occasion of Leh Dosmochey which continues for two long days. It is held in the courtyard of Leh palace itself, and monks from various monasteries come and participate to perform Chams turn by turn. This festival is celebrated during Tibetan New Year and in it monks arrange offerings to bind away the hungry ghosts and evil spirits.
Visitors planning to have holidays in Leh Ladakh should necessarily take part in Gustors, which is a festival celebrated in different months of the year, in Karsha, Spituk and Thiksey. This occasion is a celebration of victory and triumph over immorality and evil, and continues for two long days. The prime attraction of this event is the folk dancing, in which dancer’s distinct and vibrant masks representing goddesses, gods, protectors and guardians. This Ladakh festival ends with smoldering and assassination of effigy of evils.
Masks- important part of Ladakh occasions
The two day festival of Yuru Kabgyat is celebrated in the Lamayuru monastery in July near Leh. The most fascinating aspect about this occasion is its Ladakh monk’s dance festival in which monks perform wearing masks. During this, monks perform rituals and prayers, to pray and get rid of the catastrophe and disaster on Earth. A similar festival is Phyang Tsedup taking place in August, and just like Yuru monks wears robes and masks and perform in forms of gods and goddesses.
The Ladakh fair is the most colorful and busiest festival taking place in Leh and is celebrated every year September 1 to 15. It is a huge ceremony taking place on a large scale, and is marked by the parade of diverse cultural troupes from numerous locations of Ladakh. The procession passes through the market with the participants singing and dancing on traditional music wearing bright traditional dresses. The entire procession comes to a halt and ends in the Polo ground, where all the participants perform their best dances and songs. The entire festival lasts for a long 15 days, with different programs being organized in different villages every day. These programs include mask dances, polo, archery, traditional dances, musical concerts etc.