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Monasteries in Sikkim

Sikkim is one of the most appealing northeast states that shares its border with Tibet, Nepal, and Bhutan. However, its culture mainly centers around Tibetan Buddhism, where monasteries are considered integral to worship. Monasteries in Sikkim show the Buddhist Way of life with wisdom and compassion. And paying a visit to these spiritual centers is a way to know Buddhism in Sikkim.

All of the monasteries of Sikkim convey the heritage significance of this Himalayan Kingdom. Inside the monasteries, Buddhist Monks live and preach the Buddhist way of Life to break the vicious circle of the materialistic world and attain peace.

Here, Buddhist monasteries are perched on snowy mountains and lush green valleys. Although Sikkim is a significant hit amongst adventure seekers for trekking in snow-wrapped hills, Sikkim's rich culture and heritage are well preserved in its monasteries, an integral part of Sikkim tourism.

You can plan your holiday by booking our Sikkim tour packages and visiting these monasteries. Explore these famous monasteries in Sikkim to get peace and spirituality and rejuvenate your mind.

List of Buddhist monasteries in Sikkim for 2023 vacations

Rumtek Monastery

Find solace in Rumtek Monastery, the largest monastery in Sikkim. This three-storeyed monastery houses ancient artifacts and precious manuscripts of Buddhist teachings. A visit to Rumtek Monastery is paying a visit to the shrine temple and monastery for the monks. The beautiful lush green surroundings of Rumtek Monastery are also a visual treat for tourists. The Tibetan monasteries inspired the design of Rumtek Monastery. The 16th reincarnation of his holiness - The Karmapa used to have his seat at Rumtek Monastery. It also has a monastic school for monks to pursue Buddhist studies with a golden stupa inside the premises.

Tourists will find rare Buddhist religious artwork in the creative form of murals. The ground floor has a large prayer hall decorated with paintings, murals, and then on entrances. Also, a shrine is situated in the main building. The top floor of the monastery has a tiny stupa on the terrace.

  • Location: 24 kilometers (approx.) from Capital, Gangtok
  • Timings: 7 AM - 7 PM (every day)
  • Entrance Ticket:10 INR (approx.)
  • Best time to Visit: May - June and September - October
  • Festivals and Dance Observed: Vajrakilya Drupchen, Lama Dance, Gutor Dance, and Losar

Pemayangtse Monastery

At the higher end of Western Sikkim, indulge in a holistic aura and witness beautiful Himalayan views at Pemayangtse Monastery. It is a three-story monastery and houses several saints and Rinpoches statues. The most famous one is Padmasambhava (Lotus Born). The history of this Buddhist monastery dates back 300 years, and therefore, Pemayangtse Monastery has unwavering importance among tourists and Buddhists alike. On your visit to the monastery, recharge your mind with meditation season while listening to the sound of nature. The monastery's prayer hall is decorated with paintings, idols, and unique scriptures.

You could reach Pemayangtse Monastery with an easy 2 km (approx.) walk from Peeling. Those who love trekking will find that Pemayangtse Monastery is the starting point of the 46 km long Dzongri Trek that passes through the dense forests of Kanchenjunga National Park.

  • Location: 126 kilometers/4 hours (approx.) from Capital, Gangtok
  • Timings: 9 AM - 6 PM (every day)
  • Entrance Ticket: 20 INR (approx.)
  • Best time to Visit: April - June, and October-February
  • Festivals and Dance Observed: Guru Drakmar Chham, Cham Dance Festival

Enchey Monastery

Built under the Nyingma order, Enchey Monastery is the perfect spiritual retreat amidst the Kanchenjunga Hills and tall pine trees; Enchey Monastery is another sacred Buddhist pilgrimage site. This monastery of Sikkim dates back 200 years and is a seat of Loki Sharia and Guru Padmasambhava. Enchey Monastery is a two-storeyed structure where around 90 monks (appro.) reside. Enter into the prayer hall for enlightenment practices. Watch the wheel of law gurgle with a perfect symphony of monks chanting.

The walls of the prayer hall are decked with murals and paintings. The four elaborate pillars support the monastery roof. Monks and locals attend the mask celebration on the 8th and 19th day of the 12th Lunar Month of the Tibetan Calendar.

Location: 3 kilometers/10 minutes (approx.) from Capital, Gangtok

  • Timings: 9 AM - 6 PM (every day)
  • Entrance Ticket:Free of cost
  • Best time to Visit: April- June, and October-February
  • Festivals and Dance Observed: Detor Charm, Cham Dance.

Kartok Monastery

Thuthob Namgyal founded this monastery of Sikkim. A purely meditative location in Sikkim, Katrok Monastery is one of the best heritage sites of the Buddhist religion. It is located in the picturesque village of Yuksom. There are three monasteries in Yuksom, and Kartok Monastery is among them.

While the other two monasteries are Ngadak and Chorling, the architecture of the Kartrok Monastery is made of a red structure dotted with a yellow, golden outline crafted in Tibetan craft. A beautiful Kartrok Lake is flanked by the monastery, where colorful prayer flags are tagged. So, if you want a peaceful holiday away from the hustle and bustle, visit Kartok Monastery.

  • Location: 28 kilometers/1.5 hours (approx.) from Capital, Gangtok
  • Timings: 9 AM - 6 PM (every day)
  • Entrance Ticket: Free of cost
  • Best time to Visit: April -June, and October-February
  • Things to Do: Explore the charming paddy fields around the monastery

Phensang Monastery

This Sikkim monastery has the highest number of monks, around 300 (approx.), and its structure belongs to the Nyingma order of Buddhism. Phensang Monastery is located uphill and is amongst the largest monasteries in Sikkim. The folklore associated with Phensang Monastery states that it was founded by the 3rd Lhatsun Jigmed Pawo in 1721 AD. Afterward, in 1840, the revamp of the monastery was done to accommodate more monks. In 1883, the monastery structure was damaged by excessive rain but was constructed with government aid. Solace is the language of monks, and people speak it at Phensang Monastery.

  • Location: 27 kilometers/1.5 hour (approx.) from Capital, Gangtok
  • Timings: 8 AM -5 PM (every day)
  • Entrance Ticket: Free of cost
  • Best time to Visit: April - June, and October-February
  • Celebration Observed: Sikkimese New Year Celebration

Sikkim Monasteries Travel Tips

  • Respect the cultural and traditional beliefs
  • Don't make a loud noise
  • Switch off your mobile inside the premises
  • Don't photograph the monks without asking them
  • Photography inside the premises is prohibited
  • Wear clothes that protect your whole body




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