Hemis Festival 2017: Photos of Hemis Festival in Ladakh will leave you awestruck

By Dilip Merala | Anoop Menon | Published:Mon, July 03, 2017 1:44pm

The Hemis Festival marks the birth of the founder of the religion, Padmasambhava, and it is a sight to behold. Locals dress up in their flashiest clothes and the Lamas of the monastery perform the sacred Cham dance to the tune of cymbals, long horns and drums.

Every year, the legendary Hemis Gompa monastery in Ladakh hosts the two-day Hemis Festival. The Tibetan Buddhist festival is a state holiday, and it marks the tenth day of the Tibetan lunar month. This year, the Hemis Festival falls on 3-4 July 2017. If you are in Leh or somewhere in Ladakh, you should definitely head to the Hemis monastery, around 40 km from the main city of Leh. And if you are not anywhere nearby, these photos of the Hemis Festival offer a brief but beautiful glimpse into the celebrations. ALSO READ: Festivals and events in India in July 2017 that you must attend

Cham, the masked dance performed by the Lamas that celebrates victory good over evil 

A monk performing the masked and costumed Cham dance

Another example of the ornamental masks seen during the Hemis Festival

Lamas performing a dance during the festival in front of the Hemis Museum

A Cham dance performance seen during the Hemis festival

The various colorful masks worn by the Lamas of Hemis Gompa

Monks playing the traditional Tibetan horn

Other instruments being played by monks during the Hemis Festival

The majestic Hemis Gompa in Ladakh

Audiences watch as the monks perform the Cham dance in the Hemis Festival


The Hemis monastery, built in 1630, is said to be the richest and one of the most renowned monasteries in Ladakh. It grew under the patronage of Sengge Namgyal and the administration of the Drugpa sect, and the festival is a big part of its identity. And within this festival, the Cham dance is the most iconic element. The dance itself is slow and tells different tales related to the creation of Tibetan Buddhism. The Padmasambhava dance, for instance, includes depictions of the Ruta demons and Yama, the god of death. NOW READ:
Ladakh festivals: Monks, dance and celebration of life

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Published:Mon, July 03, 2017 1:44pm


Hemis Ladakh Hemis Festival

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