Swastika stands as the symbol of ancient world on a baronial road, about 125kms from Leh to the west. The most elderly extant monastery, the Swastika is also known as Yung-drung and was born in 11th century. Constructed from sand stone, the monastery is enveloped in interesting legends and history brightened by the exotic geography of the location consisting of streams of yellow-colored sand formations.
You can witness another member of the monastery-family about 69kms to the west of Leh, the Alchi monastery which is the most prominent and largest among them. Coming into existence in 11th century through Rinchen Zangpo, the Alchi monastery is home to antique paintings and sculptures that recreates the Kashmiri form of Buddhist representations.
Every monastery of this family is unique and has a life-story on its ground. This trek is recommended for those who wish to explore the spiritual in them through the spectral aura of the monasteries.
Sham Valley Trek Itinerary:
As you move about 45kms to the south of Leh, the Hemis monastery stands before you as the largest in the region. Under the care of Drukpa order, it was conceived in early part of 17th century. The valley forms the nestling lap for the monastery surrounding it with water currents and towering walls. We spend the night at the hotel in Leh.