Samding Monastery

 

On the shores of Yamdrok Tso, Samding sits around 10km east of Nangartse. The monastery is sited on a ridge that separates the northern arm of the lake from Dumo-tso, a smaller lake between the northern and southern arms of Yamdrok-tso. It provides excellent views of the Dumo plain and the mountains to the south. ou can walk here from Nangartse in about 2 hours.

Samding is noted for the unusual fact that it is traditionally headed by a female incarnate lama named Dorje Phagmo. When the Mongolian armies invaded Samding in 1716, Dorje Phagmo changed her nuns into pigs to help them escape the terrors.

It's possible to visit the main assembly hall, to the right of the courtyard, which is dominated by a statue of Sakyamuni. There is also a footprint of the ninth Dorje Phagmo here, plus an eerie protector chapel and several chapels upstairs. There are 31 monks in residence.

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