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Top Buddhist monasteries in India

  1. Dharamshala (McLeod Ganj), Himachal Pradesh:
    • Namgyal Monastery: The personal monastery of the Dalai Lama, it’s a major Tibetan Buddhist center.
  2. Leh-Ladakh, Jammu and Kashmir:
    • Thiksey Monastery: A prominent Gelugpa monastery known for its stunning architecture and annual Gustor Festival.
    • Hemis Monastery: The largest and most famous monastery in Ladakh, known for the Hemis Festival.
    • Diskit Monastery: Located in the Nubra Valley, it’s famous for its massive Maitreya Buddha statue.
  3. Sarnath, Uttar Pradesh:
    • Dhamek Stupa: A prominent Buddhist site where Buddha is believed to have given his first sermon.
    • Mulagandhakuti Vihara: A modern monastery with beautiful frescoes and a peaceful garden.
  4. Bodh Gaya, Bihar:
    • Mahabodhi Temple Complex: The holiest site in Buddhism, where Siddhartha Gautama attained enlightenment.
    • Thai Monastery: A beautiful Thai Buddhist monastery in Bodh Gaya.
  5. Sanchi, Madhya Pradesh:
    • Sanchi Stupa: An ancient Buddhist monument and UNESCO World Heritage Site, featuring monastic remains.
  6. Nalanda, Bihar:
    • Nalanda University Ruins: An ancient Buddhist center of learning with monastic ruins.
    • Nava Nalanda Mahavihara: A modern Buddhist university and monastery in the Nalanda tradition.
  7. Ajanta and Ellora Caves, Maharashtra:
    • Ajanta Caves: These caves feature ancient Buddhist monastic complexes with exquisite paintings.
    • Ellora Caves: Cave 10 (Vishvakarma Cave) is a significant Buddhist site with monastic cells.
  8. Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh:
    • Tawang Monastery: The largest Buddhist monastery in India and an important center for Tibetan Buddhism.
  9. Kushinagar, Uttar Pradesh:
    • Parinirvana Stupa: This site is where Buddha is believed to have attained Parinirvana, or final enlightenment, and it includes a temple and monastery.
  10. Rumtek Monastery, Sikkim:
    • Rumtek Monastery: A famous Tibetan Buddhist monastery and seat of the Karmapa Lama.
  11. Bylakuppe, Karnataka:
    • Namdroling Monastery (Golden Temple): One of the largest Tibetan Buddhist monasteries outside Tibet.
  12. Rajgir, Bihar:
    • Vulture’s Peak (Gridhrakuta Hill):
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