Renowned for its majestic mountain beauty, the remote north Indian region of Ladakh is also famous for its auspicious Hemis Festival. Held each year in late June or early July, the monastic festival entertainment includes masked dancers and much celebration, as Express reader Lauren Matthews discovered when she visited the ‘land of high passes’…
“The first night we were in Hemis for the festival we heard faint music coming from a tent on the other side of the river, so a couple of us decided to check it out. We followed the tunes to a tent where we found several locals dancing around a table to Ladakhi grooves as well as some Bollywood classics, including “It’s the time to disco”, a song that continues to ring in my ears to this day.
The music was coming from an old speaker, hooked up to a generator with some dubious cables draped across the floor of the tent. They were more than happy for us to join them in this table dance, and before long word had spread about the foreigner invasion, resulting in about 50 or more locals getting vantage points wherever they could, applauding our dancing! We did have to stop dancing every now and then, as the cables were danced on so much they needed repair occasionally for the music to continue. Still, it’s a musical experience I will never forget!”
Ladakh is an unforgettable adventure discovering spiritual havens and awesome mountain landscapes. Intrepid offers travel in Ladakh to coincide with the Hemis Festival but book early as the small group adventures always fill quickly!