Monastic Tour in Sikkim
Sikkim is a land of tranquillity where the religions inspire the way of life. Buddhism is the main religion, which propagates the message of peace, equality and love. Before Buddhism was introduced in the late seventies the people of Sikkim were basically animistic. They used to worship the nature like the mountains, rocks, water, trees, streams and rivers. That is why most of the lakes, rivers and mountains carry various legends and are regarded as holy places. There are more than 200 monasteries in Sikkim, and some of them are as old as 300years.
Nestled at the isolated hilltops these monasteries are the main centres of meditation and institutions for learning Buddhist philosophy. The priceless ancient Thankas or the scroll paintings and intricate murals adorning the walls of the monasteries depict insightful principles of Buddhism. Enchanting valleys with countless prayer flags, lonely monastery and Chorten with snow caped mountains in the background, the prayer chant and simple livings of the Lamas make the journey in Sikkim a perfect pilgrimage. The relics, antics, sacred manuscripts and the architectural patterns of the monasteries of different ages can be valuable instruments for the travellers interested specially in monastic tour.
A special naturebeyond package combines some of the most important monasteries in Sikkim giving you an opportunity to understand and interact with the Buddhist philosophy, to study the lifestyle of the monks vis-a-vis the history of Buddhism and its different sects. This package does not really emphasise on a leisure tour to enjoy the scenic beauties but promises to help you discover yourself through Buddhism and monastic culture.
During the course of the travel you will be taken to various monasteries in North, East and South Sikkim as well as to research institution on Buddhism and even to the prominent personalities in Sikkim having vast knowledge on the subject. Colourful traditional rituals like Chaam or Mask dance can also be organised.
Karma Kagyu Monastery in Phodong: Built in 1740, the monastery is famous for the century old murals that adorn its wall. The monastery Situated at a distance of 32 Kms from Gangtok on the Gangtok Lachung highway.
Enchey Monastery in Gangtok: The 200 years old monastery is an important seat of the Nyigmapa order was built on the site blessed by Laa Druptob Karpo, a trantik master known for his power of flying.
Rumtek Monastery: The seat of the Kagyu order, one of the 4 majore Tibetan Buddhist sects. His Holiness the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa arrived here in the late 1960s. The centre regarded as the second most important monastery after Lasha in Tibet and houses some of the world's most unique religious scriptures and relics. Traditional in design, it is almost a replica of the original Kagyu headquarters in Tibet.
Namgyal Institute of Tibetology: The most prestigious and renowned centre for studying Buddhist religion and philosophy and a treasure trove of vast collection of rare Lepcha, Tibetan and Sanskrit manuscript, antique statues and Thankas. The institute also has over 200 Buddhist icons and other prized objects of historical importance.
Pemayangtsy Monastery: One of the oldest Monasteries in Sikkim, the Pemayangtsy Monastery was originally established by Lhatsun Chempo, a revered Lama, who performed the consecration ceremony of the first Chogyal (the religious Monarch) of Sikkim. The Pemayangtsy Monastery was initially established as a Monastery for the Ta-sa . The Monastery is located on a hilltop at 6840ft near Pelling and commands a magnificent panoramic view of the Himalayan Ranges.
Sangacholing Monastery: Built in 1697, it is considered to be one of the oldest monasteries in the State. Situated on a steep hilltop the monastery needs a 40minutes trek through rich forest covers.
Tashiding Monastery: The Monastery is constructed on top of a heart-shaped hill with the backdrop of the sacred Mt. Khangchendzonga. according to Buddhist scriptures, Guru Padma Sambhava (Guru Rimpoche) blessed the sacred land of Sikkim in 8th Century A.D. from the spot. The Monastery, however, was built in 18th Century A.D. by one Nadak Sempa Chempo, one of the three lamas who had performed the consecration ceremony of the first Chogyal.
Dubdi Monastery: This was the first Monastery established soon after the consecration ceremony of the first chogyal. The Monastery is located on a hill top above Yuksom sorrounded by verdant forest. It can be approached by trekking only, negotiating steep slope for something like 32 to 35 minutes. It is an ideal place for lamas seeking meditational recluse.
Khechipalri Lake: Khecheopalri Lake is considered as one of the sacred lakes of this hidden in the rich forest cover. The lake remains hidden in the rich forest cover. It is believed that birds do not permit even a single leaf to float on the lake surface.