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Besides Monasteries and Temples, What to Expect for Lhasa Tour and its Surroundings?

Latest Update: November,05 2018

Photos of stunning sceneries taken from Lhasa and the attractions around remind us that the holiness of this capital city is never reflected merely by the religious precipitations of the sacred temples or monasteries, moreover, the uncanny workmanship of the nature and the power of the locals breed the sacredness out of the natural magnificence and the living philosophies. This time, let’s keep away from the chanting and praying things, and join us to explore what else we can expect for your Lhasa tour besides monasteries and temples.

Rivers in Tibet

What we can explore for natural sceneries

Namtso Lake

Duration: 2 days
Location: 250 km away and 5 to 6 hours’ drive from Lhasa
Altitude: 4,718m (15,479 feet)

Namtso Lake has long been one of the most favorite attractions which travelers give their high praises. I bet you can’t imagine how magnificent it is unless you pay an on-the-spot visit to the Lake. As the world’s highest saline lake, Namsto Lake lies quietly out there with gigantic arc-shaped bank and sparkling lake surface, showing all its beauty and holiness along with the magnificent Nyenchen Tanglha Mountains lurking behind.

Namsto Lake in Tibet

Shooting a picture with Namsto Lake

Beautiful Birds around Namsto Lake

With 5 big uninhabited islands in its center and approximately 1500 lakes scattering around, Namtso is taken as the meditation place for pilgrims in Tibet and all over the world.

1. Stunning lakeshore lines and turquoise lake water.
2. Tashi Island with flock-perched birds, mysterious grottoes and giant stones with prayer flags, marnyi stones and yak skulls.
3. Come across local Tibetan doing the Lake Kora.
4. The grand sight of sunrise and sunset on Tashi Island.
5. Shengxiangtianmen attraction (sightseeing attraction with a holy elephant-shaped landform), best viewing point to appreciate and shoot the breathtaking Namtso Lake with arc-shaped bank and its sunset.

Yamdrok Lake

Duration: 1 days
Location: 100km away from Lhasa and 1.5 hours’ drive from Lhasa
Altitude: 4,441m (14,570 ft)

If you plan a city tour in Lhasa, then don’t bother to take another one and a half hours to travel to the Yamdrok Lake located in the southwest of the Lhasa City, for its winding and voluptuous posture has always been the enchantment that captures every visitor’s heart.

Visiting beautiful Yamdrok Lake in Tibet

The beautiful Yamdrok Lake in Tibet

Taking a photo with Tibetan mastiff at lakeshore of Yamdrok

1. Stunning sceneries along the way from Lhasa to Yamdrok Lake. The twisting mountain road enables you to experience a totally different and nostalgic views in Tibet.
2. Look from an upper height, you can appreciate the looming views and unveil its eardrop-shaped sight lying on the mountain side.
3. The changing water color from different angle of view at different time.
4. Kinds of animals including sheep herds, antelope flocks, spawning fishes, docile yaks, fierce Tibetan mastiffs, singing birds can be easily found by the side of the Lake or on the road to it. Intimate contact with them definitely makes the journey much more interesting and blissfully happy.

Lalu Wetland Nature Reserve

Duration: half a day
Location: In Lhasa city
Altitude: 3646 m (11,961 ft)

Can you believe that? You can also find a wetland in northwest Lhasa and much better thing comes that you can have an intimate contact with some rarely-seen Tibetan birds out there. You may wonder how this could be.

Birds in Lalu Wetland Nature Reserve

Scenery around Lalu Wetland Nature Reserve

By covering 12.2 square kilometers and approximately 6.6 square kilometers as its core area, an intact preservation of wetland environment has been readily formed in Lalu Wetland Nature Reserve. According to the land scale, this place has been widely known as the largest urban wetland in the world.

A great number of local and migratory aquatic birds like black-necked cranes, white storks and redshanks set their nests here, making the nature reserve another popular place you are recommended to put on your touring list.

1.Explore the wetland with pleasant surprises
2.Having intimate contact with Tibetan animals out there.

Insider tips: In winter, a large number of migrant birds fly in flocks from higher mountains to some lower elevation sunshine cities like Lhasa, Shigatse and Nyingchi. Besides Lalu Wetland Nature Reserve, Zongjiao Lukang Park behind the Potala Palace is widely accepted as another site to observe the winter birds in Lhasa.


Duration: Half a day
Location: 2 km away to the east of the Potala Palace

Enlisted in the World Culture Heritage as an extended subject of the Potala Palace in 2001, Norbulingka boasts its importance of being considered as the best place for serving Dalai Lamas. Almost all the Dalai Lama have been studying here before their enthronement since Kalsang Gyatso, the 7th Dalai Lama in Tibet.

Exploring Norbulingka in Tibet

World Culture Heritage Norbulingka in Tibet

After the succession to the throne, Dalai Lamas chose this place to relieve the summer heat and enjoy the cool, so Norbulingka was gradually known as the summer palace for Dalai Lamas.

Insider tips: Tibetan opera is due to be held at 11: 00 every day morning, so it’s better to visit Norbulingka in the morning.

Lhasa River

The sacred Lhasa is not only nurtured by the high maintains, but also caressed by the broad Lhasa River. If you have not witnessed the majesty of the Lhasa River, why not drop by and have close contact with it to see how the entire Lhasa City is constructed on the base of the irrigation system driven by the Lhasa River.

The winding Lhasa River in Tibet

As the main tributary of the YarLung Tsangpo, Lhasa River originates from Mt. Nyanchen Thanglha Gangri and runs through Maizhokunggar County, Dagzê County, and Lhasa City. The total length of the River reaches 568 km with a drainage area of approximately 32,000 square kilometers. The farming area along the River side in Lhasa is one of the major grain producing areas in Tibet.

Insider tips:
1.Try photographing the Lhasa River Bridge from a camera angle of the river bank. If you are lucky, you can also find the train from Qinghai to Tibet running on the bridge.
2.The reflection of Porala Palce can be found on the south bank of the Lhasa River.

Is it possible to find any place where we can enjoy a short but thrill trek

You probably thought the trek in Tibet should always be a long-term and physically demanding activity that are carried out for most of the energetic young visitors. However, some treks around Lhasa City are one-day and short-term treks with stunning sceneries along the trekking way. If you are still hesitating, why not follow us to see what you can explore during these trekking experiences.

Ganden trek

Duration: 1 day
Location: Around the Ganden Monastery on the top of the Wangbur Mountain; 57 km away or 1.5 hours’ drive from Lhasa City
Altitude: 3800m

Never underestimate the pleasant surprises that a small scaled trek brings to you, especially the most favorite Lhasa outskirts short-term trek around Ganden Monastery. If your travel schedule is not full in Lhasa, then, this small scaled trek tour is firmly recommended, for sceneries along the trek way are surprisingly breathtaking and the trek experience you enjoyed can be thrilling.

Overviewing Ganden Monastery from the mountain

Having a Ganden trek

1. Enjoy the magnificence of Ganden Monastery building complex on Kora Mountain.
2. Burning the aromatic plants along the kora road.
3. Get a panorama view of the stunning braided Lhasa Kyi-chu valley as well as China National High Way 318.
4. Appreciate the full view of the undulating snow-capped mountains.
5. Photograph the zigzag road stretching to Ganden Monastery.

Nyenchen Tanglha to Lake-Namtso trek

Duration: 3days
Distance: 60km
Start: Damxung
Finish: Tashi Dor
Highest Point: Kyang-la (5330m)
Accommodation: Camping

Starting from Damxung County where you can experience the pure Tibetan pastoral sceneries and meet the local nomads, the entire Namtso trekking enables you to enjoy an ecological diversity of the northern Tibet and explore all the possibilities along the trekking.

Nyenchen Tanglha to Lake-Namtso trek

Lake Namtso in Tibet

Highlights of the Trek
1. Pass through lower and higher valleys; enjoy the gorge landscape.
2. Climb up the forested slopes ascending from the gorges; appreciate the constantly changing sceneries and plant covers.
3. Set foot on the sacred alpine meadows and embrace the plains of the Changtang.
4. Get a close-up view of the Namtso Lake and taste its holiness; revolve around the lake and pray for good things.
5. Camp outside in Tibet at night and sleep under the starry sky.

Is there any place we can enjoy a pleasant hot spring near Lhasa

Fancy an experience of having a hot spring in Tibet winter? Rich geothermal resources around Lhasa definitely meet your needs.

Yampachen Hot spring

Location: Northwest of Lhasa City; 100 km or 1.5 hours’ drive from Lhasa
Altitude: 4300 m

To enjoy Yampachen Hot spring in Tibet

The geothermal resources in Yampachen are famous all over China, so are the hot springs there. Locals and foreign visitors swarm to the hot spring, for its healing powers from the minerals do work mysteriously on some diseases like joint and rheumatic ones.

If you return from Namtso Lake and eager to alleviate your tiredness and fatigue, Yampachen Hot Spring is firmly recommended.

Dezhong Hot Spring

Location: 120 km from Lhasa; about 2 hours
Altitude: 4500 m

You may never imagine that the sparsely decorated hot spring located in Dezhong Village has a history of 1300 years. With lush trees and grass surrounded, Dezhong Spring enjoys its reputation for the medicinal efficacy, and has been regarded as the world’s first hot spring by most of western countries for a long time. If you want to try this one, then you have to take away the shame and embarrassment of being naked with everybody else in the spring pool. The pools have male and female partitions and the ancient spring water do relieve fatigue.

Insider tips:
1. Taking the high altitude, the thin air and the strong efficacy into consideration, you are recommended to get into the spring pool after you have something to eat.
2. Do not stay in the spring pool for a longtime.

Shopping around at local markets and being a guest in local Tibetans

No matter travelers or locals, they all like to go shopping on the Barhkor Street which is an eminent ring road around Jokhang Temple. All the worship supplies, Tibetan dresses and kinds of jewelry are available there. You are also recommended to pay a visit to Tromzikhang, the wholesale market near Barhkor Street, as well as the vegetable market to experience the daily life of Tibetan.

Barkhor Street in Lhasa

Appreciating handicrafts making process

Shopping in Barkhor Street

Being invited to visit the local Tibetan houses can be another impressive experience you definitely cannot miss. Dressing elegantly in beautiful silk and brocade-made Tibetan costumes on which pieces of jewelries are inlayed, every visitor enjoys the feeling of living the daily life like real Tibetans and being invited to local Tibetan houses. Served by hospitality and local delicacies, you can communicate freely to all the family members or even sing and dance with them. Their dances have strong sense of thyme and they are easy to follow.

If the monasteries and temples form the beliefs and faith of local Tibetans, then the magnificent mountains and lakes are the guardians of these beliefs and faiths. If you want to have an in-depth travel and get an overall understanding about Lhasa or Tibet, just pick some of these recommended attractions and explore their beauties.

So if you’re ready to a Lifetime Tour to Tibet, our dedicated and professional teams are expecting you in Tibet! Please feel free to reach us, sharing your great ideas. We would like to offer the most useful Tibet tour advice, For Free!

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