Buddhist Pilgrim Places Festivals of India Festivals of Jammu & Kashmir

Shanti Stupa in Leh in Jammu & Kashmir – A Himalayan Haven for Buddha Purnima Celebrations

Spread India's Glorious Cultural & Spiritual Heritage


Nestled in the lap of the majestic Himalayas, Shanti Stupa in Leh stands as a symbol of peace and spirituality. This pristine Buddhist shrine, perched atop a hill, attracts pilgrims and tourists alike throughout the year. However, it holds special significance during Buddha Purnima, the day commemorating the birth, enlightenment, and death of Gautama Buddha. In this blog post, we will take you on a virtual journey to Shanti Stupa and explore the unique Buddha Purnima celebrations that grace this sacred haven.

Shanti Stupa: A Brief Overview:

Shanti Stupa, also known as the Peace Pagoda, was built in 1985 by the Japanese Buddhist organization Nipponzan Myohoji. It stands at a commanding height, offering panoramic views of the Leh Valley and the surrounding snow-capped peaks. The stupa is a symbol of peace and harmony, and its construction was aimed at promoting these values in the region. It is not just a religious site but also a testament to the enduring friendship between India and Japan.

Buddha Purnima at Shanti Stupa:

Every year, on the auspicious occasion of Buddha Purnima, Shanti Stupa comes alive with devout Buddhists and curious travelers seeking spiritual solace. The celebrations typically start at dawn and continue throughout the day. Here’s what you can expect during this remarkable event:

  1. Prayer and Meditation: The day begins with prayers and meditation sessions led by Buddhist monks. These peaceful rituals set the tone for the rest of the celebrations, promoting inner reflection and tranquility.
  2. Ceremonial Offerings: Devotees bring offerings of incense, flowers, and candles to pay homage to Lord Buddha. These offerings symbolize purity and sincerity of heart.
  3. Chanting of Sutras: The air resonates with the soothing sound of Buddhist sutras being chanted by monks and pilgrims. The melodic recitations create a serene atmosphere, fostering spiritual awareness.
  4. Cultural Performances: As the day progresses, visitors are treated to cultural performances that showcase the rich heritage of Ladakh. Traditional dances, music, and drama add vibrancy to the celebrations.
  5. Circumambulation: Many pilgrims embark on a ritualistic circumambulation of the stupa, walking clockwise while turning prayer wheels. This act of devotion is believed to accumulate positive karma.
  6. Community Meals: Free meals, or “langar,” are served to all attendees, emphasizing the Buddhist principles of compassion and generosity.
  7. Lantern Lighting: As dusk falls, hundreds of lanterns are lit, illuminating the stupa and creating a magical ambiance. This symbolic act signifies dispelling darkness with the light of wisdom.


Buddha Purnima celebrations at Shanti Stupa in Leh are a testament to the enduring spiritual legacy of Buddhism in the Himalayas. The serene atmosphere, prayerful rituals, and breathtaking views make it a unique and spiritually enriching experience. If you ever find yourself in the Himalayan region during this auspicious occasion, do not miss the opportunity to witness the harmonious blend of faith and nature at Shanti Stupa.

As you participate in the celebrations, you’ll not only honor the teachings of Buddha but also find inner peace amidst the Himalayan haven of Shanti Stupa.

Spread India's Glorious Cultural & Spiritual Heritage

By Mala Chandrashekhar

Introducing Blogger Mala Chandrashekhar - a specialist academically trained in modern Western sciences, yet deeply enamored with India's timeless ethnic arts, crafts, and textiles. Her heart beats for the rich and glorious cultural and spiritual heritage of India, and she has dedicated her entire blog to spreading the immortal glories of ancient India worldwide. Through her simple yet impactful blog posts, Mala aims to reach every nook and corner of the globe, sharing India's beauty and wisdom with the world.

But Mala doesn't stop at just sharing her own thoughts and ideas. She welcomes constructive criticisms and suggestions to improve her blog and make it even more impactful. And if you share her passion for India's culture and heritage, she extends a warm invitation for high-quality guest blog posts.

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