12/02/2021 - 14/02/2021
The Losar Festival in Ladakh marks the beginning of a new year for the Buddhist community. Ladakh, the Losar is one of the most important festivals in Ladakh. It is celebrated on a large scale with a number of folk dances and music performances. Hundreds of people gather in Ladakh’s sacred sites for religious offerings to the Goddess Palden Lhamo, protector of Dharma. The grand festival is attended by dignitaries of various Buddhist countries. Continuing for nearly two weeks, Losar celebrations are filled with unique and colorful festivities. All this makes the Losar a lifetime experience for everyone.
Where is the Losar Festival celebrated in Ladakh?
The Losar Festival is celebrated all over Ladakh and its monasteries.
Losar Festival Ladakh 2021 Date
According to the Tibetan calendar, Losar Festival generally falls over a period of 3 days in January-end or February. Losar Festival Ladakh 2021 will be held from 24th February to 26th February 2021.
History of Losar Festival
Losar Festival pre-dates the arrival of Buddhism in Tibet. It has its roots in a winter incense-burning ritual of the Bon religion. Moreover, at the time of the Pude Gungyal (617-698) rule, the ninth Tibetan king, it is believed that this ritual was fused with a harvest festival to form the annual Losar Festival.
Why is the Losar Festival celebrated?
The Losar festival is celebrated as it marks the beginning of the new year for the Buddhist community. Hundreds of people gather in Ladakh’s sacred sites for religious offerings to the protector of Dharma.
Celebration of Losar Festival
Ladakhi New Year or Losar Festival is among the most awaited festivals of Ladakh and is celebrated with much fever. During the festival, people meet their friends and relatives and also visit monasteries to make offerings and seek blessings. During ancient times, a spiritual ceremony took place in winter every year. But considering its importance, Losar Festival was converted into a full-scale yearly Buddhist Festival in Ladakh. And in present times, Losar celebrations in Ladakh are celebrated much ahead of the actual date. Pre-celebrations of Losar include locals decorating the streets and their homes, getting rid of old unused stuff, and keeping the locale neat and tidy. The ultimate idea behind all these decorations and tidiness is to keep off the evil and lead the way for peace and prosperity.
Special Highlights of the Festival
- Gifts are exchange
- Folk dance & music performances
- Metho or evening procession
- Special prayers in the monasteries
- A variety of special dishes are cooked
Travel tips for attending Losar Festival
February witnesses a lot of tourists especially in Nubra Valley while locals are indulged in Losar celebrations. So, if you want to be a part of this traditional and unique festival of Ladakh, visit here in February. But remember as it is the peak tourist season, the rates of hotels and flights might go up. Make sure to check the online deals and book everything prior.
Tips you must know to attend Losar Festival
- Book your accommodation 1-2 months in advance to avoid any last-minute stress.
- Find a place to stay in Ladakh, according to your needs and budget.
- Before arriving, research where the Losar Festival will take place, as it changes every year.
How to reach Ladakh
Ladakh can be reached by air, bike, jeep, bus, or train.
Ladakh by Air - Leh Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport is the main airport of Ladakh. This is the closest airport at Leh and is well-connected with major cities including Delhi, Jammu, Srinagar, and Chandigarh.
Ladakh by Train - Taking a train to Ladakh might sound easy but the nearest railway station is Jammu Tawi, which is 700 km away from Ladakh. However, it is well-associated with major Indian railway stations and can be reached easily.
Ladakh by Road - You can reach Ladakh via Srinagar or Manali. The distance from Srinagar to Leh by road is 803 km (approx.) and Manali to Leh by road is 427 km (approx.). Atal Tunnel in Manali can be used to reach Leh as it has reduced the distance between both places. A bike trip to Ladakh is a great way to attend the Losar Festival and witness scenic landscapes along the way.