Spiti Valley

Gue, Spiti – Abode of 550 years old Mummified Lama!!

‘There’s a 550 years old Mummy of a Monk preserved in the village!!’

This piece of information was more than enough to leave us totally intrigued, curious and super excited to visit Gue Village in Spiti.

We bid goodbye to Kaza on April 29th and embarked on our return journey to New Delhi. However, we still had three more destinations to cover – Gue, Nako and Sangla. So far, so good!! And we had a huge 1100 kms distance to cover until we reach home so had to stay positive and strong.

Spiti Panor

Witnessed this beautiful view while returning from Kaza, Spiti

However, Spiti is one region where the flurry of surprises never ends; you cannot predict what you’ll encounter next. This fact serves like a natural morale boost for explorers like us and therefore though the journey was challenging we carried on with panache.

Going to Gue!!

Gue, is a high altitude tiny hamlet located at a distance of roughly 40 kms from Tabo village. The road is beautiful and mostly well maintained.

The day we were traveling we did not see a single vehicle moving towards Gue barring ours!! However, got used to this feeling 🙂 We observed change in the pattern and color of rocky mountains as we approached the village. The mountains adorned copper color as if they were meticulously painted.

When we reached the Village….

The village had an eerie silence; the wind gave special effects reminding us of the movie ‘Hills Have Eyes’!!! When we entered the village we could not spot a single soul!! We were looking for someone to confirm the way to Monastery that houses ‘Mummy’.

Tibetan Flags at Gue.jpg

Colorful flags look beautiful as the wind adorns them at Gue Village, Spiti

However the huts / houses, Tibetan flags, scripted / inscribed stones made us comfortable. The inscribed stone thing is very peculiar to Tibetan culture; I’m going to cover the carving culture exclusively in another post. I believe the stones are hand scripted. The place looked beautiful and there were many things that distracted us from directly going to the Monastery.

Scripted Stones.jpg

I wish I could decipher what the intriguing writings on the stones reflected….

We could observe bright and colorful Monastery perched on top from a distance and assumed this must be the one. We kept ascending with the road to reach there.

Gue Monas 1.jpg

Gue Monastery visible from a distance

When the Monastery premises felt peculiar…

 The wind pressure increased, it became little frosty too and somehow we both felt so dehydrated up there!!

Gue Mons.jpg

We both were feeling something, I’m not sure if this was just a psychosomatic discomfort but the moment we reached the premises we felt quite different, there was something in the stillness of the place.

Gue Monastery.jpg

Colorful and gorgeous Monastery structure at Gue Village in Spiti, Himachal

Looking for the ‘Mummified Lama’

There was no one around and the Monastery was locked!! It was so disheartening, after traveling so far we did not want to miss visiting the Monastery (read taking a close look at the mummified Monk)

Unlike other monasteries we visited so far, this one seemed fairly new!! And yes it was. The structure was painted with bright red, blue and green colors, totally aesthetically appealing. One particular thing about the ‘Monastery’ was firstly the shape was unlike what we have seen at other places and secondly the dragon-like faces at the four corners. Moreover, I wish I could understand what was written on the walls there.

Gue Village.jpg

So, after peeking through all over two floors of the Monastery like structure and waiting for someone, we still had no luck L the circumstantial evidence reflected the interiors were still in the making. The structure was vacant and there were cartons lying in the corners.

Just when we were about to get moving (reluctantly though), the little cemented room in proximity caught our attention. It looked like a watchman or security personnel’s room. It had glass windows, so we decided to sneak peek in search of some luck. And voila!!!!

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Categories: Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti, Untraveled Routes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Photography theme – Monasteries

Key, Spiti.jpg

“Not everybody trusts paintings but people believe photographs” – Ansel Adams

This image was captured in Ki village, Spiti Valley near Key Gompa / Monastery in India.

Suggested Reading – Reaching Spiti, Road trip to Spiti

Categories: India, Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti | Tags: , , , , | 3 Comments

Hello beautiful!!

A beautiful morning at tiny hamlet ‘Sarahan’; Nestled in Kinnaur adorned by historic Bhimkali Temple and gorgeous Shrikhand Peak. Photo story is right here – https://untraveledroutes.wordpress.com/traveling/himachal/sarahan/

Sarahan Quote.jpg

Categories: Road Trip, Sarahan, Kinnaur, Spiti Valley, Travel Quotes | Tags: , , , , , , | 4 Comments

At Peace, Nako Village

Buddha Nako Village.jpg

This absorbing shot was captured near a monastery in Nako Village, Kinnaur while returning from a 10 days road trip to Spiti Valley.

Categories: Road Trip, Spiti Valley, Travel Quotes | Tags: , , , , , , | 15 Comments

Dhankar Heights!! (I)

Dhankar Landscape

Landscape view of Dhankar – The vegetation belt can be observed with the Spiti river flowing in the background. This was capture in April 2016 and therefore the belt is not as green as it should be.

At an elevation of 12,774 feet (3894m); Dhankar is a scenic village that lies between Tabo and Kaza. The entry to the village is hard to miss!! The meaning of the word ‘Dhankar’ is fort on a cliff.

Dhankar was the traditional capital of Spiti Valley ruled by the Nonos in 17th century. The fort and the monastery has deteriorated over the years and mostly ruined. However the monastery is being built to replace the old one.

Will share more pictures of this beautiful place soon 🙂

Categories: Road Trip, Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

The New Monastery at Tabo

Tabo - New Monastery

Glimpse of a new monastic complex at Tabo. The construction of new monastery is under progress.

Tabo Monastery was built in 996 AD (more than a millennium back!!) covering about 6,300 sq. m , it’s one of the oldest surviving monasteries in the world. We covered Tabo as part of our 10 days road trip from New Delhi – Spiti – New Delhi.

The premises are covered by mud structures crafted beautifully to form particular shape, as we entered the main temple, intrigued and curious , we just kept gazing at the temple!!! The main complex is manifestation of eternal Indo-Tibetan art and culture. Take a virtual tour of the oldest and divine monastic complex here – Totally Tabo -ed!!!

Happy Exploring!!!

 

 

Categories: Road Trip, Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti, Travel Experience | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Beautiful Companion

Companion.jpg

This shot was captured at the Bhimakali Temple in Sarahan. The innocent dog was just strolling through the premises spreading smiles to all strangers 🙂

Sarahan, could be the answer to your search for the offbeat and scenic hill station in Himachal!!!

Know more about Sarahan.

Categories: Road Trip, Sarahan, Kinnaur, Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti, Travel Experience | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

The road that leads to Spiti Valley (III)

This article is part of the series ‘The road that leads to Spiti Valley‘.

Finally! Spiti it is !!

I’m as much excited to write this post and share the captivating pictures with fellow travelers and readers. The best part about the ‘Road Trip to Spiti Valley‘ is that the surrounding views change in every few minutes leaving you with a feeling of surprise and appreciation for nature.

The 10 day long enduring road trip that we did to Spiti Valley seemed totally worth once we crossed Nako!!! From the Kinnaur route, one enters Spiti Valley via Sumdo.

Tabo Road.jpg

Heading to Tabo!!

The road is a bit rock strewn at intervals but mostly it’s a smooth ride. In April’16, lot of work was going on the roads till Tabo, I’m assuming by now the roads must be in perfect condition.

Road to Tabo.jpg

Wondering what to do in Tabo village, just check out ‘Totally Tabo -ed‘, a detailed post on visit to Tabo Village!!!

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Tabo, here we come!!!

Road to Dhankar

Road to Dhankar, Spiti. This route happens to be my favorite, the landscape views of ice capped mountains in combination with chocolate hills and Spiti River flowing by, so divine!!!

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Categories: Adventure, Offbeat Travel, Photography, Road Trip, Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 22 Comments

Doorway to Heaven (II)

Temple DoorWhat a beautiful place for a temple door to be located!!! Perched on top, seems to transpose you directly into the lap of gorgeous Himalayas 🙂

This shot was captured at Kalpa, Kinnaur en route to ‘Road Trip to Spiti Valley‘. You can check out more heavenly pictures here – ‘Himalayan range at Kalpa

Happy Exploring!!!

Categories: Adventure, Road Trip, Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti, Travel Experience | Tags: , , , , , | 6 Comments

LOVE :)

♥♥Parent Love.jpgI captured this beautiful and timeless ‘Father-Son’ moment at Sarahan. The lovely trail luxuriant with lush greens make it all the more captivating!!! Ashish and Aayansh are love of my life ♥♥, it’s my humble attempt to pen down a parent’s emotion.

Don’t miss the gorgeous pictures of this town here – Abode of Goddess Bhimakali

Cheers, ♠ Untraveled Routes ♠

 

Categories: Offbeat Travel, Photography, Poetry, Sarahan, Kinnaur, Spiti Valley, Tour Spiti, Traveling with a Baby | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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