Jama Masjid Leh – History, Architecture and How to reach

The historical Jama Masjid is situated within the heart of Leh city. It is one of the most revered and fundamental ancient mosques in Ladakh. The mosque is considered to be the largest one in the entire region of Ladakh. It Used to contain a memorial known as Shahi Hamdani, which was dedicated to a Muslim Sufi saint, Mir Syed Ali Hamdani. It is said that the famous Sufi saint offered prayers in the Jama Masjid, Leh.

Jama Masjid Leh view from Leh Market

The architecture of Jama Masjid

Situated in the Main Bazar, it is a must-see attraction in Ladakh. The interiors of the mosque are built with unique architecture and decorated with intricate carvings. The mosque stands as a symbol of glorious magnanimity and religious forbearance. Blending seamlessly with the devout and religious force area of Leh, the long-established mosque was recently changed with modern architecture a few years ago.

Jama Masjid Leh Inside pic

Initially, the mosque was built with a domed constitution but was changed a few years back. The new building contains excellent architecture and is adorned with sophisticated carvings. The specific factor about this mosque is that only men are allowed to enter the mosque premises.

Jama Masjid Interior

History of Jama Masjid

The history of Jama Masjid states that during 1667 AD, the Mughal emperor Aurangzeb signed an agreement with the Ladakhi ruler Deldan Namgyal. According to this agreement, the Mughals were supposed to protect Ladakh in return for a fee, along with the construction of the Jama Masjid in Leh as its symbolic seal. Afterward, Sengge Namgyal built the mosque as a tribute to his Muslim mother. Today, the mosque stands majestically as a creative work of Turkish-Iranian architecture.

Jama Masjid Leh Inside

Best time to visit Jama Masjid

The best time to visit Jama Masjid is from May to October. The weather is quite pleasant during these months, and you can easily travel anywhere in Ladakh. The mosque remains open every day, and you can visit anytime in the morning, afternoon, or evening hours.

The roads to Ladakh via Srinagar and Manali remain closed from November to April because of heavy snowfall. As such, you can reach Ladakh via flight only and then travel further to the Jama Masjid. If you want to get detailed information about this topic, you can take a look at our blog post, Best time to visit Ladakh.

jama masjid leh front gate

How to reach Jama Masjid 

The easiest way to reach Jama Masjid is to arrive in Leh via flight and then hire a cab or a taxi to reach Jama Masjid. You can also use other forms of public transport to reach the Jama Masjid.

  • Cabs/Taxi: If your hotel is around Leh Bazaar, you can walk to the mosque itself. If you stay somewhere far from Leh City, you can hire a cab and reach the Jama Masjid, Leh. 
  • Flight:  Leh Airport – Kushok Bakula Rimpochee Airport is the nearest airport connected with some of the major airports in India. You can hire a taxi from the airport to reach your hotel in or around Leh and then arrange a day trip to Jama Masjid and some other nearby attractions.
  • Train: The nearest significant railway station from Leh is Jammu Tawi. From the railway station, you can hire a cab and reach Leh. It will take 3 days to reach Leh if you plan to stop overnight at Srinagar and Kargil. After reaching Leh, you can travel to Jama Masjid, as mentioned above.

If you want to know more about this topic, look at this blog post, How to Reach Ladakh.

Food options near Jama Masjid

There are a lot of decent restaurants and food joints in the Main Market. Since it is the capital city, you can easily find eateries with many options to fulfill your hunger.

Jama Masjid Travel Tips

  • Rest on the first day of your arrival in Leh for acclimatization.
  • Apply good sunscreen to protect your skin from high-intensity UV radiation.
  • Make sure to wear your sunglasses on sunny days.
  • If you plan to visit in winter, bring some warm clothes with you. If you want to get detailed information, take a look at Things to Carry for Ladakh Trip.
  • You should wear conservative clothes and respect the sanctity of the mosque.
  • You can easily find petrol pumps in Leh which remain fully functional even during winters.
  • You can easily find ATMs in Leh Market. Therefore, cash availability will not be a problem near the mosque.
  • Subscribe for a BSNL, Jio, or Airtel number as other networks do not function well in Leh. 
  • Book your flight tickets as early as possible because the prices hike during the peak seasons in Ladakh.
  • Google flights have a remarkable feature of flight price alert. So, search for your flight and then subscribe to the alert.

Please read the World health organization’s travel advice before traveling anywhere.

Read Indian Government travel guidelines.

Nearby Attractions:

The Jama Masjid is situated in Leh. So you should know about the nearby attractions to arrange your whole day trip in and around Leh.

  1. Main Bazaar Leh: The Jama Masjid is situated in the heart of Leh city. After visiting the mosque, you can also take a stroll around the city and indulge in shopping at the unconventional market.
  2. Zorawar Fort: The Zorawar Fort is around 2 kilometers away from the Jama Masjid, Leh.
  3. Leh Palace: The Royal Palace of Leh is situated 3.3 kilometers from the Jama Masjid. You can have your lunch in the main market and then visit Leh Palace. 
  4. Central Asian Museum: The museum is just a few meters away from the Jama Masjid. You can take a walk and reach the museum in a few minutes.
  5. Shanti Stupa: You can enjoy the panoramic views of the entire Leh town from the Shanti Stupa. It is situated 3.4 kilometers from the Jama Masjid.
  6. Sankar Gompa: The Sankar monastery is located around 2kilometers from the Jama Masjid. It will take around 5-10 minutes to reach the monastery.
  7. Hall of Fame: The Hall of Fame is around 6 kilometers away from the Jama Masjid. It will take around 10 minutes to reach there from Jama Masjid.


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