The culture of India is one of the oldest and unique. In India, there is amazing cultural diversity throughout the country. The South, North, and Northeast have their own distinct cultures and almost every state has carved out its own cultural niche. There is hardly any culture in the world that is as varied and unique as India. India is a vast country, having variety of geographical features and climatic conditions. India is home to some of the most ancient civilizations, including four major world religions, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism and Sikhism.
The Web Cultural India

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Leh Palace

Location: Ladakh, Kashmir
Built In: 17th Century
Built By: King Singe Namgyal
How to Reach: Ladakh can be reached from Leh via roads. One can take flights from major cities of India like Delhi to Leh and then reach Ladakh to see Leh Palace.

Leh Palace
Leh Palace of Ladakh, though in a dilapidated condition continues to lure tourists from far and wide. Located in the Himalayas, the adventurous journey one has to undertake to reach the palace is what makes it even more special. Leh palace was built in the 17th century by King Singe Namgyal as the royal residence. It was deserted in the mid 19th century after the family shifted to Stok. The Leh Palace of Ladakh still retains an old worldly charm about it.

The Leh Palace has nine stories which are in ruins now. Though it has been maintained now, it is uninhabited. The majestic palace overlooks the Namgyal hill and is nestled amidst breath taking locales of the Himalayas. It resembles Potala in Lhasa, though in comparison is much smaller. 
Leh Palace
Right above the palace is the famous Victory Tower that was built in the memory of the triumphant brave Ladakhi soldiers who fought the invading armies of Balti Kashmiris in the early 16th Century. Today, the palace serves as an office for Indian Government's Archaeological Conservation Organization.

The temple architecture is basically medieval Tibetan architecture. The main features of this style of architecture are massive buttressed walls and overhanging wooden balconies. The Leh Palace has been a silent spectator of some of the most brutal wars and has suffered much damage from cannon balls. The palace still exudes charm and provides wonderful views of the snow capped mountains and landscape. There are some murals still left in the palace that speak of the royal glory of the bygone era.