Phugthal Monastery in KargilMonasteries spreading the principles of Buddhism are the most alluring feature of Zanskar region in Kargil district. This area has ancient and largest monasteries of this region co - existing with the dominant Muslim culture of Kargil. The serenity and uniqueness of these monasteries allure travelers from all around the world. Phugthal or Phugtal Monastery is also a famous monastery and Gompa of this district.
This magnificent place is located at the mouth of a giant cave atop a perched mountain in a huge gorge with tributary of Lungnak River flowing beneath. Picture perfect is the only way to describe its beautiful location. It is an isolated monastery in Zanskar region. It has high elevation of 3850 meters above sea level. It belongs to Drukpa sect of Buddhism.
Structure of Phugthal Monastery in KargilIt is believed that this monastery was constructed during 12th century by Gangsem Sherap Sampo. It has a unique honeycomb like structure at the mouth of a huge cave. The main assembly hall of monastery is carved out of this cave itself. It houses 70 monks and their residences are built down the hill side from this place. Many chapels are located inside this monastery. Out of these, one old chapel exhibits beautiful frescoes with Influence of Indian iconography. The ceiling of this chapel is also beautifully decked with such rich Indian arts.
The cave has a hollow with stable water level. Despite the amount of water extracted from this hollow, the level of water never reduces. This water is also believed to have healing properties to cure many diseases.
There are three prayer rooms and a well stacked library inside this monastery. Also, it has a stone tablet that has inscriptions regarding Alexander Csoma De Koros, a noted Hungarian writer who compiled English to Tibetan dictionary. He visited this region during 1826-27 and translated many Buddhist literary works into English.