Leh Ladakh Festival

Ladakh Festival is one of the most grand festivals of Ladakh. This is one of a kind festival to witness the culture of the people inhabiting different areas of Ladakh.

The festival is celebrated in September, in Leh the capital city of Ladakh and its villages.

The opening ceremony takes place in Leh at a large scale with several cultural troupes from different part of the region taking procession which traverses through Leh Market. Dancing, singing, traditional music, people wearing colorful traditional Ladakhi dresses will be there. At the Polo ground this comes end. The festival which will be for 6 days having regular celebration in various villages will have archery, polo, and masked dances from the monasteries and dances by cultural troupes from the villages. There are musical concerts too.
Mountains dominate the landscape around the Leh as it is at an altitude of 3500 mtrs. Leh has a cold climate having harsh winters from October to March which is below freezing.

Here are some pictures from the festival shot in the different years during my travels to Ladakh.

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The Brokpa or Dard people inhabit the Dah Hanu region of Ladakh. They are known for the elaborate head-gear. They are of Indo-European origin and believed to be descendants of the soldiers of Alexander the Great.

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This is the traditional wear of the Ladakhi people during weddings.

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Ladakh Traditional Dress – the long coat is called Kos and the cap is called Tibi. Female cap is called Charu Tibi This shoe is called Pabu.

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The women in their best attire dance around the Polo Ground in Leh. Its quite a sight to see this dance.

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The masked dances locally called cham, is practiced in Tibetan Buddhism and Buddhist festivals. The dance is accompanied by music played by monks using traditional Tibetan instruments.

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A Brokpa Lady ready for the dance.

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Another lady getting ready, being helped.

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The buddhist monks read aloud the religious texts from long books with separate pages.

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A Praying old lady during the festival.

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You can find the Ladakh Festival Calendar here.


Thank you for reading this post. Hope you liked spending time here. I will be back again with another interesting place.

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This post is written by Saurabh Chatterjee. He is a travel photographer and a photography trainer.
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