Marking the birth of Guru Padmasambhava, Hemis Festival is not only one of the most important Buddhist celebration in Ladakh but is also the most popular festival amongst tourists. Held in one of the most-visited monasteries in Ladakh, Hemis Gompa, the festival is a two-day event that is celebrated on the 10th day of the fifth month of Tibetan Calendar, which is the month of June/July in Gregorian Calendar.
On this popular festival in Ladakh, Cham Dance and other traditional dances are performed in Hemis Monastery on the beats of drums and cymbal and on the tunes of long pipe like Tibetan music instrument. On both days, giant thangkas (Buddhist paintings) are unfurled for the public. In fact, every 12th year, the largest thangka in Ladakh is unfurled in Hemis on the first day of the festival for the public to see.
The Hemis festival is one of the biggest and the most famous religious festivals of Ladakh. This festival is a colorful one falling on the 10th day (called Tse-Chu in the local language) of the Tibetan lunar month. During this extravagant yet religious festival of Ladakh, traditional dance and local music performances are given. As a part of the festival, a lot of Buddhist lamas gather at the Hemis Gompa and perform the famous and sacred Mask Dance. Moreover, Hemis festival gives you an opportunity to experience the life of Ladakh. Hemis festival tour also takes you to some of the major tourist attractions of Ladakh, hence is alluring in all senses.