25 kilometers South East of Karakorum
Shankh Monastery located in Central Mongolia, 25 kilometers South East of Kharkhorin city, is one of Mongolia’s oldest and most historically significant monasteries. It was founded in 1647 by Zanabazar, spiritual head of Tibetan Buddhism for the Khalkha in Outer Mongolia, around the same time as the establishment of the nearby Tuvkhun Monastery.
As elsewhere, the monastery was closed in 1937, temples were burnt and many monks were shipped off to Siberia. But during the years of repression, five monks secretly kept the monastery alive in a local ger at great risk to themselves. One of them is responsible for its reopening in 1990, a stupa pays tribute to him.
In 1993, the Dalai Lama sent three Tibetan lamas to Shankh in order to bring Buddhism to light in the country. You can learn about ancient history of the place from the monks.