One of my most tranquil moments of my Darjeeling trip (India) was the early morning visit to Ghum Monastery. As part of the Tiger Hill sunrise Package that is offered to tourists, a stopover at this monastery proved to be a delightful surprise, as I did not expect much out of it.
Samten Choling Buddhist Ghum Monastery (popularly called as Ghum Monastery) is located at Ghum, around 8000 feet above sea level, around 8 kms from Darjeeling. We arrived here at 6 am and were greeting by sounds of morning prayer chanting of Buddhist monks. There is a 15 foot high statue of ‘Maitreya Buddha’ inside the main hall which every tourist scrambled to click. However, I was in no such mood; instead I sat down at a corner and took in the sights & sounds. There were adult monks going about their morning business, a bell rang and out came a group of child monks is a neat little line from their dorms and to the study room. I could just imagine the hard life of discipline these monks had ti live right from childhood, yet they were more at peace with life that any of us could ever be.
Soon, it was time for us to leave and I so wished I could have spent more time here. It was a morning of tranquility for me on my Darjeeling sojourn.