Leh, the capital of Ladakh, is breathtaking. The cold desert land, over the magnificent Himalayas is a beautiful and scary experience at once. Leh Palace illuminated by huge halogen lamps looks like a bewitching castle on a hilltop set ablaze in the dark nights of the Leh. Drive in the city is as exciting as the wonders it has in its lap with the long isolated winding road that opens up into a sheer expanse of arid flatness in burnt sienna. There is blinding sun at the top and perhaps at the first impression, a visitor is not likely to appreciate the blessings of the land fully.
Bon and Buddhism rule the lifestyle and culture of the people here. The Chortens (Stupas) and enchanting Gompas (Monasteries) adorn the city with their presence. The landscape is breathtakingly beautiful and there is an ominous beauty in the stark surroundings of Ladakh. The Hinayana Buddhist way of life lends a benevolent spirit to the very air of the region. Sightseeing of the historic monuments and major Buddhist gompas (monasteries) are the main attractions of Ladakh. The capital, since the construction of its nine-storey Leh Palace in the early 17th century, A few kms up the Indus is Shey Palace, the most ancient capital, with its palace and temples. Down river, Basgo, right on the road, and Tingmosgang, a short distance up a side-valley, both served as royal capitals when the Old Kingdom was temporarily divided into two parts in the 15th century. Leh offers many excursions such as Hemis Monastery which is one of the largest and famous monasteries belonging to Dukpa Order. Likir Monastery belongs to Gelukspa Order and Lamayuru Monastery belongs to Drigunp order are a splendid sight.