Giu Mummy Overview

Nestled in the serene Spiti Valley, Giu Mummy is a mysterious marvel that dates back over 500 years. This well-preserved mummy of a Buddhist monk sits in a small temple in Giu Village, close to the Indo-Tibet border. The monk’s body, surprisingly intact without any embalming, offers a unique glimpse into the spiritual practices of the past. Visitors come from far and wide, not just for the mummy but also for the breathtaking views of the surrounding Himalayan mountains.

Tucked away in the Spiti Valley, at an elevation of 10,000 feet above sea level, lies the Giu Mummy. It is a marvel of history and spirituality, as it contains the naturally mummified remains of a Buddhist monk in Giu Village. This extraordinary relic dates back to the 15th century. It has been preserved in a state that bewilders science and fascinates visitors. Found serenely seated in a meditative pose, the Giu Mummy has hair, teeth, and nails remarkably intact.

The mummy was discovered following an earthquake in 1975, which revealed the monk's resting place. According to research and carbon dating, the monk’s body dates back to the 15th century, linking the mummy directly to the rich tapestry of Buddhist tradition in the region. 

Giu Mummy, in addition to being a historical artefact, is also a symbol of enduring faith and the area's spiritual heritage. According to local legends, the monk is believed to have sacrificed himself for the well-being of the village. The villagers consider him their guardian spirit. During your visit to the temple of the Giu Mummy, you can see the mummy in a sitting position. This attraction serves as a bridge between the past and present, offering insights into the spiritual practices of the time and the natural wonders that allowed such a phenomenon to occur.


• Discover the mystery of the Giu Mummy, a 500-year-old Buddhist monk whose body is preserved naturally in the serene Spiti Valley.
• Marvel at the mummy's preserved state, with hair, nails, and teeth intact, showcasing ancient preservation techniques of corpses.
• Witness the unique sight of a Mummy in a meditative pose, offering a rare glimpse into rigorous Buddhist practices.
• Learn about the fascinating local folklore, including tales of the mummy's protective powers over Giu Village and its historical significance.
• Explore the remote Giu Village, located at an elevation of 10,000 feet and surrounded by the Great and Middle Himalayas.

How To Reach

To visit the Giu Mummy Shrine by road, take the National Highway 505, which connects Spiti Valley to Gue village. The highway passes through Kinnaur district from Shimla and reaches Kaza. This 418.5-kilometre journey takes around 13 to 15 hours.

By Car: For those preferring to drive, the route from Shimla to Kaza is followed by an 81.6-kilometre drive to the Giu Mummy Shrine, via Reckong Peo. Private vehicles and rental cars are ideal for this journey, providing the flexibility to pause and admire the valley's beauty at your own pace.

By Bus: Alternatively, state-run (HRTC) buses and private coaches offer services along this route, especially from June to October. The bus journey starts from Shimla to Kaza, after which you need to walk to the Giu Mummy Shrine.

Best Time To Visit

Giu Mummy is a unique attraction that you can visit all through the year. Regardless of the season, the shrine offers a bone-chilling experience amidst the snowcapped mountains. 

Best Day of the Week: Visiting on weekdays is recommended for a more peaceful experience. Weekends tend to attract more visitors, making the route to the shrine quite crowded. Therefore, weekdays are the perfect time to enjoy the shrine and its surroundings without the rush.

Best Time of the Day: The shrine is open for visits from 08:00 a.m. onwards, which is also the ideal time to come here. A serene morning tour offers a tranquil experience with fewer crowds.

Other Essential Information

Tips to visit Giu Mummy

1. Visit in the mornings to avoid crowds and experience the spiritual importance of Giu Mummy.

2. Wear comfortable shoes for the hike up to the mummy's location, as the path may be steep.

3. Carry warm clothes and layers like jackets since the temperatures in the village tend to change suddenly.

4. Carry water and snacks, as there are limited facilities near the attraction.

5. Respect the local customs by maintaining silence near the mummy.

6. Photography is allowed, but take photos respectfully without disturbing others.

7. Check road conditions before your visit, as weather can affect access to Giu Village.

8. Carry a basic first aid kit, as medical facilities are far from the village.

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Point of Interest for Giu Mummy
Witness the Ancient Mummy of Giu Village

Witness the Ancient Mummy of Giu Village

Visit the Gue Village, where you can find the mummy of a 15th-century Buddhist monk. The mummy dates back to 1475 and is preserved in a glass case. It offers a glimpse into the spiritual heritage of the region. With skin, hair, and teeth astonishingly intact, it serves as a testament to the monk's meditative journey and the village's history. During your visit, you can learn about the folktales surrounding the mummy, suggesting that he sacrificed himself to protect the village. You can also learn about the self-mummification practice of the monk.

Enjoy the Giu Monastery's Tranquillity

Enjoy the Giu Monastery's Tranquillity

Just a short walk from the mummy's shrine, the Giu Monastery offers a haven of peace against the backdrop of Spiti's dramatic landscapes. This sacred site, with its panoramic views, is a place of immense spiritual significance and is also an architectural marvel. Here, you can listen to the chanting prayers, explore the intricacy of vibrant thangka paintings, and experience a profound sense of spiritual serenity. The monastery's atmosphere, rich in history, provides a perfect setting for meditation and spiritual renewal.

Pay Respect to the Giu Mummy

Pay Respect to the Giu Mummy

Visiting the Giu Mummy, you see the 500-year-old body of the Buddhist monk, Sangha Tenzin, who chose self-mummification through deep meditation. His remarkably preserved state, with intact skin, hair, and teeth, defies the natural decay process, emphasizing the monk's mastery over his physical self. It also highlights a strong belief in the power of meditation and self-discipline. During your visit to the village, pay your respects to the mummy, and learn about his spiritual legacy in the peaceful Spiti Valley.

Witness the Vibrant Festivals of Giu

Witness the Vibrant Festivals of Giu

After paying your respect to the Giu Mummy, head over to explore the quaint and often offbeat Gue village. Here, you can take part in vibrant festivals and rituals, showcasing the rich culture of the region. During your visit, you will have the opportunity to witness festivals like Dachang in February or the Ladarcha and Namgan festivals in August. This is when the entire community comes together in a spectacle of colour, dance, and music. These festivals are deeply rooted in the village's traditions and Buddhist beliefs. Additionally, they provide a deeper understanding of the local way of life, offering a glimpse into the communal spirit of the region.

Trek the Trails Surrounding Giu

Trek the Trails Surrounding Giu

For the adventurous at heart, Giu offers unexplored paths and trails that lead through some of the most scenic landscapes in Spiti Valley. Trekking around this attraction also offers panoramic views of snow-capped Himalayan peaks, desert valleys, and the serene Spiti River winding through the rugged terrain. These treks vary in difficulty, catering to both seasoned hikers and casual walkers. Along the way, you can spot indigenous wildlife like Gaddi sheep, Blue sheep, Ibex, Himalayan red fox, etc. You can also discover secluded meditation caves once used by monks and immerse yourself in the beauty of nature.

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