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Popular Buddhist Monasteries in India are in Bihar (Bodhgaya, Mahabodhi), Himachal Pradesh (Namgyal, Nechung Oracle), Ladakh (Hemis, Alchi), Sikkim(Rumtek, Enchay, Pemayangtse).
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Home :: Buddhist Information Guide :: Buddhist Monasteries in India

Buddhist Monasteries in India

Founded in India, Buddhism exerted its noble influence all around the world. The 2,500 year old faith is simply an accumulation of philosophies of life. Being the birthplace of this system of belief, India today boasts of a number of Buddhist sites that are scattered all around in the country. Legions of tourists and devotees flock to India to pay a visit to the sacred sites. Most importantly, the state of Bihar is a prominent site of Buddhist pilgrimage. Bodhgaya and the Maha Bodhi Temple in Bihar are the popular sites of the state. Leh-Ladakh is strewn with numerous ancient monasteries. States of Himachal Pradesh and Sikkim are the other worth visiting sites.Thai Buddhist Temple, Bihar

Bihar : Popular Buddhist Monasteries
Bihar happens to be the focal point of Buddhism in India. Bodhgaya, a small quaint town in Bihar, is the most significant destination for Buddhist followers all around the world. Bodhgaya is the place where Lord Buddha attained enlightenment. The Mahabodhi Temple, which is said to have been built by Ashoka during the 3rd century BC, is the cynosure of all eyes here. Another worth visiting site in Bihar is the ancient Nalanda University. It is the site of a huge monastic institution that flourished here between the 5th and 11th centuries. Around 2,000 teachers resided here at that time and the total number of students came around 10, 000. Adherents from countries like China, Bhuta, Nepal, Burma and Japan have constructed numerous Buddhist monastic settlements here.

Himachal Pradesh : Popular Buddhist Monasteries
The state of Himachal Pradesh houses some important Buddhist monasteries. The Tabo Monastery, one of the most sacred in India, lies here in the Spiti region. Other famous Buddhist monastery is the Dhankar Monastery. The rugged landscape heightens the religious aura all the more. The small town of Dharamsala is the abode of His Holiness the XIVth Dalai Lama and is the head quarters of the Tibetan Government in exile. Prominent monasteries of the region include the Namgyal Monastery, the Nechung Oracle Monastery, Tse-Chok-Ling Monastery and the Norbulingka Monastery.

Ladakh : Popular Buddhist Monasteries
Leh, aptly called the 'Hermit Kingdom' is located at an elevation of 3,500 m in Ladakh. Tourists and devotees arrive here in hordes to explore the ancient monastery circuit. The quaint town of Leh has a total of 13 gompas or monasteries that truly represent the mysticism of the Buddhist faith. Hemis Monastery, founded in the 17th century, is the largest of all the gompas in Leh. At this monastery, you can see the ancient Buddhist manuscripts and the largest tangka in India. Yet another popular monastery is the Alchi Monastery that has a fascinating collection of Buddhist artifacts belonging to the 11th and 12th centuries. Other renowned monasteries of Leh include the Likhir Monastery, Stok Monastery, Shey Monastery, Thiksey Monastery and the Spituk Monastery.

Sikkim : Popular Buddhist Monasteries
Tibetan Buddhist MonasterySikkim is located in the Eastern Himalayas and shares its borders with Tibet, Bhutan and Nepal. Visitors flock to Sikkim to visit the gompas and to partake in the Buddhist festivals. Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim, is home to the Research Institute of Tibetology. Sikkim has such famous monasteries as the Rumtek Monastery, the Enchay Monastery and the Pemayangtse Monastery.

India is a wonderful mix of a variety of experiences. The Buddhist monasteries are scattered all over the country. States like Arunachal Pradesh, Orissa, Mahrashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh also do have a lot to offer in terms of Buddhist centres and sites that inspire feeling of deep respect in everyone who come to visit the pilgrimage sites. There is a religious mystique that always surrounds the Buddhist sites. The ancient monasteries are a storehouse of Buddhist teachings and knowledge.

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