Tawang Monastery the Pride of Arunachal

Posted On January 6, 2012 

One of the most interesting northeastern Indian states Arunachal Pradesh also offers the best travel experiences. Anyone coming to this part of the world is sure to enjoy the best of travel pleasures and the most of interesting sights.

The Tawang Monastery is also one such important feature of Arunachal Pradesh which is the reason people throng to come and have a look at this lovely region.

Situated in the region of Bomdila in the district of Tawang in the state of Arunachal Pradesh, the Tawang Monastery has its own interesting tale. Also called the “Galden Namgyal Lhatse” this monastery was the discovery of Merak Lama Lodre Gyamtso sometime in the years 1860 to 1861. Standing tall on a hill, around 10,000 feet above the sea level, this monastery with its rugged ravines in the southern and western parts provides ideal natural views with its narrow ridges in the north and the lovely slope in the eastern side.

Tawang Monastery

With the best picturesque views, the Tawang Monastery is a place of tranquil, serenity and calm. The Valley of Tawang Chu is visible from here and the whole structure actually looks like a majestic fort from a distance. This is the largest monastery in the region of Arunachal and in India. It is the second largest monastery in Asia. With a capacity to have at least 700 monks, the Tawang Monastery today has around 300 monks living within it.

Tawang Chu Valley

The monastery has a Dukhang or the Assembly hall inside. This is the most fascinating structure of the Tawang Monastery. This building has three storeys and lies on the northern side. It has a temple and the establishment of the Abbot or the Labrang. With murals on the inside walls, there is an altar that occupies the whole of the northern wall. There is a silk covered silver casket which holds the Thankas, of the goddess Sri Devi or the Palden Lhamo who is the presiding deity of the Tawang Monastery. The fifth Dalai Lama gave this to Merak Lama. This painting is known as the Ja Droi Ma meaning the warmth of a bird indicating that the Thanka has life. There is a lovely decorated Buddha in the centre rising up to 26 feet.

Dukhang at Tawang Monastery Dukhang at Tawang Monastery

The Tawang monastery has the Dung Gyur Mani near the entrance. This structure provides water to the monastery. Then at the entrance there is the Kakaling a stone structure which is the gate. The Kakaling has a ceiling having the Kying Khors or the mandalas.

The main monastery gate has huge doors which stand out majestically. The eastern wall is around 925feet long and the height could be around ten to twenty feet. Then the southern wall also has a gate with a door fitted to it. There are two slits here in the wall for firing a muzzle gun through it.

Inside Tawang Monastery

Inside there is the court of the monastery which has a paved path running from the main gate and goes right to the back of the monastery. There are residential quarters in the eastern side and these quarters are known by the name of “sha” which means hut. Then there is the “Par- Khang” which is the library with 3 storeys. The Holy Scripture is also kept here. The Rhum Khang is the cooking area and there is another area on the two storied building to store provisions.

Visit the Tawang Monastery in Arunachal Pradesh and experience this paradise.

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