A building in the grand tradition of Tibetan architecture said to have inspired from the famous Potala in Lhasa, which was built half a century later. The palace was built in the 17th century and had nine storeys , but it is now dilapidated and deserted. It was the home of the royal family until they were exiled to Stok in the 1830s. Within the palace are Buddhist wall paintings, centuries old ‘tankas’ or painted scrolls and other artefacts. Above the palace, at the top of the Namgyal hill, is the Victory Tower, built to commemorate Ladakh’s victory over the Balti Kashmir armies in the early 16th century. This palace built for King Singge Namgyal, now houses the Ladakhi branch of the Indian Government’s archaeological conservation organisation.
The view from the monastery above the Leh Palace is quite impressive. It is known as Namgyal Tsemo Gompa (monastery). The red monastery has some frescos, Buddhist scriptures, idols and a massive statue of the Maitreya Buddha (future Buddha).
The palace is always open for public visit and the restoration work is on. You can get to the roof of the Leh Palace, Ladakh to enjoy a panoramic view of the whole Leh town. From upon the roof of the palace, you can also view the mountain of Stok Kangri and some part of the Zanskar mountain across the Indus Valley (to south) and the Ladakh mountain ranges (to north).
Places to See in Leh
Japanese Stupas made for world peace. Shanti Stupa is located at Changspa, on the hilltop, and was inaugurated by Dalai Lama in 1985. Its state of the art work attracts a lot of tourists to Ladakh and is spectacular to watch. The Shanti Stupa can be reached by car, or on foot via a steep flight of five hundred steps.
You will enjoy the panoramic view of the chain of mountains and the peaceful little village of Changspa with typical Ladakhi houses built along a gushing stream, and the towering Namgyal Tsemo in the distance.
Hall of Fame
Hall of Fame near Leh is worth a visit for every citizen. It is a glorious museum constructed by Indian army. You can see the memorabilia, eminent defence personalities with biographies, images and weapons used during Kargil war and belongings of enemy soldiers found at war site. Another section of this building is entirely dedicated to Siachen and its heroes. On display are attires, multi layered shoes to keep their feet from frost bites, their daily instruments, their day to day food mainly frozen and packed, which is heated by lighting small balls of Hexamycin tablets, as fire is difficult to ignite at a temperature dipping -30 deg to -50 deg centigrade. It is mentioned on a board that 97% of the casualties in Siachen are due to cold and terrain.
Defying the Law of gravity. This place is close to the Gurdwara Shri Patthar Sahib. It has been noticed that when a vehicle is parked on neutral gear on this metallic road the vehicle slides up.
GURDWARA SHRI PATTHAR SAHIB
The Shrine known as Gurdwara Patthar sahib is situated about 25 kms. Short of Leh town on the Leh-Srinagar road. Built in the everlasting memory of Shri Guru Nanak Dev, the great prophet who sanctified the place by his sacred visit during the year 1517 while on his second missionary tour. The Guru reached here via Nepal, Sikkim, Tibet, Yarkand and Leh after having spiritual discourses with the Sidhas at Mount Sumer (Central Himalayas)