The Best Monastery Trek In India - Phugtal Monaestry Trek

Anuvindh ShyamprasadJul 2 . 6 min read

Assuming you regularly wind up thinking about visiting a remarkable destination, navigating through mountain ways, and climbing to a location that makes you feel like being in a Fantasy World then Ladakh is one such place. Ladakh, one of the locations where all trekkers like to visit because of its diverse culture, tradition as well as environment. Hemis, Alchi, Lamayuru, Shey, and Thiksay are some of the famous Tourist spots travelers love to visit along with the Phugtal Monastery.

Phugtal Monastery

Phugtall Monastery is one of the places in Ladakh which take you to a surreal world of adventure along with infusing you with a deep calm and contentment. In the local language Zangskri, Phugtal is a combination of ‘Phug’ meaning Cave and ‘Tal’ meaning leisure. The Monastery has a history going back to around 2550 years. It is believed to be the place where numerous Sages, Scholars, monks, etc visited looking for peace and later they built their monastery in and around the Natural cave. It is also said that one of the newest of the Tibetan Buddhism the Gelug School of Tibetan Buddhism originated from this Phutgal Monastery. The Phutgul Cave also houses a sacred cave that is believed to possess medicinal and healing properties. This is also one of the few monasteries that can be reached by foot. The astonishing structure of architecture nurtures the desire of the travelers and people who are int to spelunking.

Travelers are warmly welcomed by the locals of the Anmu and Cha village where the travelers can take a rest and relax. Travelers use this opportunity to learn about the past, the culture, and other things about the Phugtal Monastery.


Recognized to be probably the most primary inhabitant of the cavern are the 16 Arhats or the unbelievable devotees of Buddha. The pictures of these 16 Arhats show up on the cavern dividers. The incredible Schoolers and Translators Padmasambhava and Phakspa Nestan Dusdan are accepted to have lived in the cavern, as is the extraordinary pioneer and Translator Lama Marpa Lotsawa. In the 12th century, the Tibetan translator Zanskar Lotsawa Phagpa Sherab additionally lived and worked from Phuktal. The famous researchers and siblings Dangsong, Pun, and Sum, who were accepted to have the superhuman ability of flight gave lessons on Dharma at Phuktal. At the point when Jangsem Sherap Zangpo showed up at Phuktal, the three siblings handed down the sacred site to him and left. As indicated by legend, the profoundly skilled Zangpo made a spring show up and run from the cavern, a tree to develop on top of the cavern, and for the actual cavern to develop bigger in size. Then, at that point, under his direction, the current construction of the religious community was worked around the cavern. It is worked in the cliffside, similar to a honeycomb. The bluff is important for a horizontal crevasse of a significant feeder of the Lungnak River (Lingti-Tsarap River). The cloister today houses a primary sanctuary, petition rooms, a library with uncommon hallowed writings, condos and living quarters, showing offices, a kitchen, and obviously, the first cavern and the sacrosanct spring, which is secured. It is home to around 70 priests.

There is a stone tablet that fills in as a token of the stay of Alexander Csoma de Kőrös at Phuktal, while he dealt with the primary English-Tibetan word reference somewhere in the range of 1826 and 1827 when he investigated Ladakh.

How to Reach Phutgal Monastery

To get to Phugtal Monastery, you will initially need to arrive at the town of Padum which is the directorial central in Zanskar. From Padum you need to travel for around 30 kilometers to the town of Sychar or Lchar. As the road ends in Ichar you have to walk the rest of the way. Google map will show you a motorable street right till Anmo which isn't actually the situation. The back road that existed before till Anmo has washed away in Zanskar surges of 2015 and might not be established. For the time being, you can just drive to Ichar and trek to Phutgal Monastery.

You will have to cover several kilometers over a time of 2 days. You will find yourself in a difficult situation in some parts of the trekking. There are two different ways that you can move toward the religious community; one is by means of Chah town and the other being Purne town.

·      Move up to the gompa through Anmo and Chah, and return the same way

·      Move up to the gompa through Anmo and Purne, and return the same way

·      Or on the other hand move up through Anmo and Chah and return by means of Purne; or the other way around. This way is mostly preferred by those who are in search of adventure.

An estimation of 2 days is expected to cover Phugtal Monastery. In the event that you can add an extra day and make it a 3 days trip, then, it would be more enjoyable and more amusing.

Accommodation In Phugtal Monastery

As for accommodation, a choice of becoming a paying guest is available in the town of Anmo, Chah, and Purne. Assuming you need to remain at a guest house, that alternative is accessible at Purne or at the monastery itself.

Many Travelers set up camp on the path. In the event that you also were bringing your own camping materials, you can set up your shelter at any of the towns. It is best to camp near the town or some houses.

Other Tips

As for mobile service, you will only get coverage of BSNL but it is also available in Padum and from there you can only contact others using satellite phones which are available in the Village Cha and the monastery.

There are shops in Anmu, Cha and Purne towns where you can get some essential items. You can get some refreshments at both Anmo and Chah. You can only get medical help from Cha Village.

Things to carry

·      Water – At least 2l for every 3–4-hour trekking

·      Snacks, Chocolate, and other food items which are easy to carry

·      Medicine – antibiotics, pills for allergy (if any), Sunblock lotions,

·      Cap - Sun in these altitudes is intense and can cause sunburns

·      Warm Clothes – in the night its temperature goes down

·      Sun Glass, Lip Balm, Cold Creams, etc

·      Other essential for your own personal Issues.

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