4-day Lhasa tour: review of my trip with a Tibetan travel agency
A couple of years before my trip to Tibet, a friend proposed that we spend Chinese national holidays in Lhasa. We were both working in China and very busy, and we didn’t have much time to travel.
I dismissed her idea. I thought that such a short trip to Tibet wouldn’t be enough to get a sense of the Tibetan culture. Certainly, it didn’t seem enough to me. I had been waiting to visit Tibet for 20 years. I wanted to spend there more time. But what options did I have, afterall? My hesitation depended on two main reasons:
- I was already bothered by the thought of being “escorted” through Lhasa and of being compelled to join a group of people I didn’t know (as the Chinese government regulations for travels in Tibet required).
- A trip to the main town in Tibet would imply spending most of the time with other tourists
.Tibetwas my dream destination and I wanted the trip to be special!
At that time, I didn’t realize that Lhasa, first of all, is the top destination for the majority of Tibetan pilgrims. The city, and its monasteries and
4-DAY TOUR of LHASA
I arrived at Lhasa airport on a day in June. The arrival hall was small. However, I couldn’t see the guide who was supposed to pick me up at the airport. I had forgotten what the Tibetan travel agent told me on the phone. Most of Tibetans weren’t able to get a passport for political reasons, and so they would wait for me just outside the airport.
I found a guide and a driver waiting for me in the car park right in front of the exit gate. Tashi, the guide, was very friendly. As we were driving from the airport to Lhasa, he conversed with me in fluent English. He made me feel completely at ease. They left me at the Yak Hotel, a
The Potala Palace and the Jokhang Temple
Later that morning, I was waiting together with a small group of
The Jokhang Temple also was erected by the first Tibetan king. The king, following the example of his Nepali wife, embraced Buddhism and built a
TIBETAN SPIRITUALITY IN LHASA
The most touching experience of the few days spent in Lhasa was getting to see Tibetan people: relentlessly and rhythmically turning their beads and prayer sticks, most of the Tibetan come to the holy city from remote places to climb to the palaces and pay homage to their divinities at sacred altars. All the photos from my trip to Tibet are here and here. Walking through the Barkhor circuit, as in other streets of Lhasa, I could sense the spirituality that permeates the city, expressed in the prayer, chants, and prostrations of thousands of devotees.
WHAT ABOUT TIBET’S POLITICAL ISSUES?
Lhasa is also in the thoughts of the exiled Tibetan monks and
If you wish to make your visit to Tibet successful and unforgettable, I recommend you get in touch with Wonders of Tibet Tibetan travel agency.
OUTSIDE LHASA: SERA MONASTERY AND DREPUNG MONASTERY
Just a few km outside Lhasa it’s possible to visit two more ancient monasteries. Drepung Monastery is the largest monastery in Tibet. It was home to ten
After visiting Sera Monastery, we returned to Lhasa historical