Key Monastery - Spiti Valley's Biggest Monastery!
Like most of the places in Spiti valley, Key monastery is not a tourist place. However it is a Traveller’s paradise. From a tourist point of view, there is not much to see except the ancient Key Gompa. But for a traveller, Key Gompa is a great learning experience. The Key gompa is a very holy place. Smoking and drinking is not allowed inside the monastery. Most importantly utter silence in the monastery is recommended.
Importance of Key Monastery
The Key Gompa (also written as Kyi or Kee) is said to be more than a 1000 years old. It is one of the most popular places in Spiti valley after Chandra Tal Lake. Most importantly it is the largest monastery in Spiti valley. Therefore it is a famous budhist learning centre. Many Lamas live in the monastery and complete their Budhist education.
This monastery has a lot of ancient literature and artifacts that represents the budhist culture. Various budhist relics and manuscripts are on display in the monastery.
It also has a special Stupa which contains the remains of the great translator Rinchen zangpo, also known as Mahaguru. He translated various Budhist Sanskrit texts into Tibetian language. Therefore he is very well respected in the Budhist culture.
Location - How to reach Key Monastery?
The monastery is situated just above the Key village.The Key Gompa is located at an height of 12,800 feet. Distance from Kaza to Key Monastery is 15 kms approx. One can reach here by taking the Kibber village road. The nearest airport to Kee monastery is Bhuntar Airport, which is in Kullu. However, the most preferred way to reach Kullu or Manali is by road. The whole journey from Delhi to Key monastery by road takes at least 2 -3 days. If you are coming from Delhi or Chandigarh, we recommend one night stay in Manali. The next day you can head towards Kaza and stay. Finally, you can take a day excursion to Key monastery on the third day.
There are no big hotels near the monastery, however there are a few homestays in the village. Hence, most travellers prefer to stay at Kaza only. One can visit Key monastery from Kaza in short day excursion and return to Kaza in the evening.
Places to visit near Key Monastery
- Langza Village – Also known as the fossil Village. The distance from Key gompa to Langza village is 27.5 Kms approx
- Hikkim Village – Hikkim is a village with the World’s highest Post office at an height of 14,567 feet. The Pin code is 172114. Distance from Key Monastery to Hikkim village is 27 Kms approx.
- Komic Village – It is the highest Asian village connected with a motorable road. Distance from Key monastery to Komic village is 31 kms approx.
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