Further west of Basgo, stands the famous Alchi Gompa known for some of the finest art and religious paintings and statues in the Western Himalayas. Set amidst a green oasis surrounded by a stark barren landscape, with its five temples, Alchi seems to have been a revered centre of Buddhism. Inscriptions within the temple date its construction to the 11th century. It was also a place from where the second spread of Buddhism in Tibet germinated. The monks who serve here belong to the Ge-lugs pa sect many of them from the nearby Likir monastery. The painting style here is entirely different than those found in other Gompas of the region and they all appear to be in an excellent state of preservation, rich in colour and detail. Here you'll find a fine painting of Rinchen zangpo the great translator, images of Sakhyamuni, Avalokiteswara and other superb art forms. A torch is an essential item as all of the temples and chambers in Alchi do not have any light save for that filtering in from windows or doors. Replete with sculptures, images, statutes and paintings Alchi is an art lovers treasure trove. The design of the main temple or du-khang is unique being unlike any other Gompa structure in the Himalayas. Housing superb wood carvings, and the images of three Bodhisattvas attired in unusual costumes painted with different buddhist images, the monastery of Alchi has astounded many by its incredible state of preservation over the years especially with its location in such a remote site.