Known worldwide as the Roof of the World, Tibet has an average elevation of 4,000 meters above sea level. Traveling to Tibet is a dream for many people, however, there are many misconceptions of what actually happens here. Come see it with your own eyes and feel it with your own heart. Discover its beautiful landscape and experience its ancient charming culture with their mysterious folklores. The capital Lhasa means "Land of the Gods" and is the heart of Tibet. Located at 3650 meters (12 000 feet) above sea level on the northern slopes of the Himalayas, it is over 1,300 years old and sits in a valley right next to the Lhasa River.
Due to its high altitude, travelers from sea level may suffer from altitude sickness. Some may feel nauseous and experience headaches. Try to take it easy; talk slowly, walk slowly and do everything slowly. Avoid showing pictures Dalai Lama to monks or locals; this could get you into trouble. Show respect; do not wear hats, short pants, and sleeveless shirts in monasteries. Ask before taking pictures and go around sacred objects in a clockwise direction.
With over 1,000 rooms, the Potala Palace is the living quarters of the Dalai Lamas while they lived, and their majestic golden tombs when they died. As the religious and political centre of old Tibet and the winter residence of Dalai Lamas, the palace witnessed the life of the Dalai Lamas and the important political and religious activities in the past centuries. Potala Palace also houses great amounts of rare cultural relics including the gold hand-written Buddhist scriptures, valuable gifts from Chinese emperors and many priceless antiques. The Potola Palace has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1994.
The Barkhor Street market is a circular street around the Jokhang Temple in the center of the old section of Lhasa. It is the oldest street in a very traditional style of Tibet where you can enjoy bargaining with the local Tibetan vendors for the handicrafts which are rarely seen elsewhere in the world. Barkhor Street is one of the most important religious paths along which pilgrims walk around Jokhang Temple while turning prayer wheels in their hands through the centuries. Devoted Buddhist pilgrims progress by slowly by prostrating along the street clockwise every day until late at night.
Founded in 1419 by one of Tsong Khapa's (the founder of the Gelupa sect) eight disciples, Sera Monastery became famous for its tantric teachings, while Drepung drew fame from its governing role. Sera was smaller than Drepung, with 7,000 monks, but was very rich and comparable in power. Excellent debates takes place regularly here.
Norbulingka Summer Palace
The Seventh Dalai Lama constructed the first summer palace in 1755 and each successive ruler added his own buildings. Presently, the complex contains a small zoo, botanical gardens, and a mansion.
Eat & Drink
Steamed of fried dumplings filled with meat or vegetables.
Tingmo / baba
Tingmo / Thukpa
Handmade noodle soup with meat or vegetables.
Yak butter tea
Salty black tea mixed with yak butter - part of the Tibetan staple diet.
Light Tibetan beer made of barley but without adding the bitter hops like in Western beers.
Qinghai - Tibet Train
Billed as the highest railway in the world, the Qinghai-Tibet line runs over 1000 kilometers from the Qinghai Capital Xining to the Tibetan capital Lhasa. To provide you with a better opportunity to enjoy the stunningly beautiful scenery on the way, scenery viewing platforms have been set up at nine stations. These includes: Yuzhu Peak Station, Chumaer River. Tuotuo river, Buqiangge, Tanggula Mountain, Lake Namtso, Nagqu, Damshung, Yambajan. The train will stay for around 15 minutes in each station.
About 80 km west of Dangxiong, is the eighth station on the line. Yangbajing is not a place for sight seeing; rather, as the highest hot springs in the world, it is famous for its terrestrial heat. Watching the white fogs floating outside the railway station, one can even feel the heat. Soaking in the hot water on the cold plateau, you will wash away your fatigue and warm your heart.
Namtso, meaning Heavenly Lake in Tibetan, is one of the three holiest lakes in Tibetan Buddhism. In the fifth and sixth month of the Tibetan calendar each year, many Buddhists come to the lake pay homage and pray. Lying at the foot of Mount Nyainqentanglha, it covers an area of 1,940 square km at an elevation of 4,718 m. It is the second-largest saltwater lake in China and the highest saltwater lake in the world. It is also a rich haven for fish and birds.
This little town runs through one of the lushest areas in Tibet. In summertime, groups of cattle and sheep dot the grassland. Dangxiong is renowned for its rich mineral resources, precious Tibetan medicines and tourist attractions, such as Namtso Lake.
The Qiangtang Grasslands in Naqu spreads over about 600,000 square km, taking up half of the whole of Tibet, averaging 4,500 m above sea level. The boundless grassland is the principal pastoral area in Tibet, scattered with white sheep and black yaks.
In the hinterland of Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, Kekexili covers the south of Kunlun Mountains and the north of Tanggula Mountains. It is the largest uninhabited area in China. Despite the harsh natural environment for human beings, Kekexili is a wonderland for wild donkeys, yaks, Tibetan antelopes and 230 species of wild animals. The endangered Tibetan antelopes are the pride of Kekexili, with only about 7,000 to 100,000 left worldwide.
Known as the "forefather of all mountains." Climbing Mt. Kunlun brings the journey to a different type of climax. It extends about 2,500 km at an average elevation of 5,000 m with snow-covered peaks. The largest ice-free spring lies at the northern bank of the Kunlun River, producing not only good quality spring water, but also the extraordinary June-time snows.
Chaerhan Salt Lake
The second largest salt lake in the world. Covering an area of 6,000 square km, Chaerhan boasts a 32-km highway that runs along its shores paved with salt. It is said that the salt here could satisfy world demand for 2,000 years.
Lying in the northeast of Qinghai Province, approximately 150 km from Xining, is famous for its Bird Island. May and June are the best seasons for bird watching. More than ten species -- including geese, gulls, sandpipers, cormorants, black-necked cranes and brown-headed gulls - nest on the island during the spring time. About 100,000 migratory birds occupy an area of 0.8 square kilometers, making it a paradise for people as well as birds.
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