Ladakh (meaning ‘land of the passes’) is a cold desert in the Northern Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir. It is divided into the mainly Muslim Kargil district and the primarily Buddhist Leh district. The people of Ladakh have a rich folklore, some of which date back to the pre-Buddhist era.

“The land is so harsh and the passes so numerous, that only the best of friends or the worst of enemies would visit you”

As the Himalayan farming season is short, Ladakhi only work for 4 months of the year. All ages can join in and help. During the eight winter months, work is minimal and festivals and celebrations are almost a continuous affair, giving ample opportunity to display Goncha, the traditional dress.

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