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Shey Palace


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Located 15km to the south of Leh on the Leh-Manali highway is the Shey Palace. The 3 storey palace is perched on a hillock overlooking the beautiful Shey village. 'Shey' loosely translated into Ladakhi means mirror (or maybe reflection) and it is the reflection of the palace on the still waters of the lake below which gave origins to its name.

Shey used to be the capital and the home for Ladakh's royal family up until the Dogra conquests forced the royal family to be stripped of their power and move to Stok. The Shey palace is situated at a strategic location overlooking the entire heartland of Ladakh. This importance of the location is attested by the numerous chortens that are scattered around the village, particularly near the barren plains north of the palace complex.

There are 2 statues of Sakyamuni in the palace complex. The first one located inside palace is made of gilded copper and is about 3 storeys tall. The other statue is in a temple outside the palace, nearby a group of white chortens. This seated statue of Sakyamuni is about 7.5m tall, made of copper and brass plated with gold and studded with gems and other precious stones.

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