Lhasa

Lhasa is the capital of the Tibetan Autonomous Region. The history of the city goes back to the 7th century, when a Tibetan chieftain married a Nepalian and a Chinese princess and built palaces for his wives where the future Lhasa would emerge. In the 17th century, Lhasa became the center of Tibetan Buddhism, where successive Dalai Lamas, high priests of Tibetan Buddhism, came to reside. At the elevation of 3,650 m (11,975 ft), Lhasa is one of the highest cities in the world. The city currently has a population of over 200,000.

Attractions

Map

  1. Barkhor Street

    Barkhor is a street that extends through old neighborhoods in central Lhasa that surrounds Jokhang Monastery. The street started as a favorite path followed by Buddhist pilgrims, who paced around Johhang Monastery in their demonstration of piety. Today, the street is lined with shops selling local handicrafts and Buddhist souvenirs.

  2. Drepung Monastery

    Drepung Monastery was founded in 1416. This monastery, together Along with Ganden and Sera monasteries, are known as the "Three Great Monasteries" of Lhasa. In the years before the 1950s, Drepung Monastery housed over 10,000 Buddhist monks at one time. Located in the western part of Lhasa, Drepung Monastery houses thousands of historical and religious artifacts and oversees four Buddhist colleges.

  3. Ganden Monastery

    Ganden Monastery is located 40 km east of Lhasa. It was established in 1409, by Tsong Khapa, the founder of the Geluk school of Tibetan Buddhism. This is one of the "Three Great Monasteries" of Lhasa and serves as both a house of worship and a college for Buddhist monks. Tsong Khapa, along with some other famous leading Tibetan Buddhists, were entombed here.

  4. Jokhang Monastery

    Jokhang Monastery is the most sacred Buddhist temple in Lhasa. Originally constructed in the 7th century, the temple housed Buddhist sutra and other holy artifacts brought over to Tibet by Bhrituti and Wencheng, the Nepalian and Chinese princesses who married Tibetan King Songsten Gampo. Expanded and rebuilt in the following centuries, the temple remains a popular destination of Buddhist pilgrimage. The monastery is located in the heart of Lhasa.

  5. Norbulingka

    In Tibetan language, Norbulingka means "Treasure Garden". Created in the 18th century, Norbulingka served as a summer residence for the Dalai Lamas before the 1950s. Occupying a total area of 34,000 square meters, the garden is consisted of three sections - the front garden, the palaces in the central area, and the western garden of greens. Norbulingka is three kilometers west of Potala Palace

  6. Potala Palace

    Potala Palace was originally constructed by the Tibetan King Songsten Gampo in the 7th century. Later on, it became the primary residence of Tibetan Buddhist leaders Dalai Lamas. Currently, the palace is a museum featuring Tibetan history and Buddhism. Standing on a little hill, the palace is consisted of over 2,000 rooms and shelters treasures of significant historical and artistic value.

  7. Sera Monastery

    One of the "Three Great Monasteries" of Lhasa, Sera Monastery was founded in 1434, by a disciple of Tsongkhapa, founder of the Geluk school of Tibetan Buddhism. At its high point, Sera Monastery was the home of over 8,000 Buddhist monks and students. Today there are still three Buddhist "colleges" in the monastery, where young monks study and debate Buddhist ideas. The monastery is located in the northern suburb of Lhasa.

Airport

Lhasa Gonggar International Airport is 45 km southwest of Lhasa. Transportation: shuttle buses and taxis.