Namgyal Tsemo Gompa – Above Leh Palace

For our first group wander, we headed off to the Old Town where I’d walked with Christian the other day – got a few more pics. With a photography group, you can never expect to be punctual. Our 30 min walk ended up being close to 1 ¼ hours as each of us drifted off to capture something that caught our eye.

In danger of missing the sunset from the Gompa above Leh Palace, we herded ourselves into the XYLO mini-vans & were driven almost right to the very top. There was a further climb up quite a few stairs, & a monk collecting a 20 rps entry fee at the entrance. It was a wee bit risky walking around the gompa – the narrow edges had steep drop-offs, & one of the beams covered in prayer flags I grabbed on to out on a ledge gave way & a couple of beams came down on top of me. Lucky for me they weren’t weight-bearing, but I scrambled off that ledge in no time, after releasing myself from a prayer flag entanglement.

After deciding enough was enough, my blue cargos filthy from sliding & crawling around, & having got the pics I was after, I headed back down. The rest of the group had climbed up to this hill adjacent to the Gompa, linked to it by rows of prayer flags waving in the wind & sending out prayers. It was lovely & peaceful to sit atop the hill, flags rustling around you, watching the sun set over the Indus Valley, even if there were quite a few others enjoying it too.

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