Tibet Off The Beaten Path

  • Off The Beaten Path
    by blueskyjohn
  • Off The Beaten Path
    by blueskyjohn
  • Off The Beaten Path
    by blueskyjohn

Tibet Off The Beaten Path

  • Reting Monastery

    Reting is one of the more mysterious monastery's I have visited during my travels in Tibet. I noticed I did not write a review from my last visit, so I will offer a bit of a background from my experience there.Reting is far and remote, considering some of the more reviewed and traveled to monastery's. I added this to my trip because I enjoy the...

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  • Rongphu Monastery

    Rongphu monastery is the world's highest monastery. It belongs to the Nyingma Sect of Tibetan Buddhism. Sitting at the foot of Mt Qomolangma's northern slope it offers a great view of the mountain. There are simple rooms for tourists, climbers and explorers.As it is located in Mt Everest National Park, you cannot get there without paying the...

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  • West Tibet

    The majorty of tourists only do the trip from Lhasa to Kathmandu and that's a big mistake! To me the remote highland desert of West Tibet was at least as interesting, and getting a chance to do the Kora around Kailash certainly didn't hurt the experience.Geographically, West Tibet is a highland desert, framed by three mountain ranges. Of these, the...

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  • I never expect that!

    I know much of Tibet is covered in high altitude desert, but I still didn’t expect to see such huge sand dunes! These were along the road back from Samye, and the picture doesn’t really do it justice. The greenery in the front of the picture is not grass, they are waist high bushes!

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  • Everest Base Camp

    About thirty minutes south from Rongbuk Monastery, the road opens into a wide gravel plain. Everest lies a bit over seven miles away, straight ahead, dead center. Base Camp itself is a completely unprepossessing place: a wide shallow stream on the right side of the road, a handful of large square tents on the left and, beyond them, a large herd of...

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  • Drak Yerpa Monastery

    About 20 miles east of Lhasa lies the small and remote monastery of Drak Yerpa. I went there on a pilgrimage with a young monk I'd met in the Barkhor, and we traveled by walking and hitchhiking. Still, it was a great distance away, but one well worth it. Besides my companion, no one I encountered spoke english, and it was nice to be outside of...

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  • the color of summer

    In summer the colors of the mountainland are great. Many flowers blooming make the great picture. And if you are lucky, because summer is also the rainy season, you have a blue sky behind a snow capped mountain in the background.

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  • Edelweiss

    When we travelled to the European alps, as a child, we were always looking for edelweiss, the rare flower. It is endangered and absolutely not done to pick it.Coming to Tibet we were very surprised to see the once so illusive flower in such large quantities. Everywhere we looked we saw Edelweiss.....

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  • A trip to Nam Tso: tractors are not most...

    Unfortunately we were just 5 minutes away when the tractor broke down.The driver couldn't fix it, and he suggested us to stay overnight in his house with his lovely family, and leaving next day. Of course we didn't refuse. The unexpected invitation was a unique chance to stay with a Tibetan family, a great bonus that can only happen to those going...

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  • Nam Tso

    Nam Tso is a beautiful and holy lake on 4718m altitude and is one of those few amazing locations in Tibet that can be reached from Lhasa without a special permit.It's surrounded by a 7000m+ snowcapped mountainrange and is the area is amazingly tranquil. Nam Tso is regularly visited by both pilgrims and tourists. The journey is already worth the...

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  • Cultural Revolution remnants

    Sometimes when you visit temples you can still see things like this on the walls. A tibetan we went with started yelling and screaming at the sign. We didn't know what to do but luckily a fellow Tibetan spoke to him and he stopped yelling. As far as we know he never got nabbed by the police. It just goes to show that ill feeling still exists...

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  • An absolutely irresistible smile...

    One evening as we sat enjoying our dinner camped one night on the plain at Tingri, we were surprised by eight freshly scrubbed children--in and of itself a surprising sight--bearing their schoolbooks at the open flap of our tent. They stood quietly, looking in to our tent. When asked, they said that they wanted to have pens for their schoolwork....

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  • Yumbulagang

    Yumbulagang is variously called a palace, a fortress, and a chapel. According to legend, holy texts fell from the heavens onto its roof, proclaiming the appearance of Buddhism in Tibet. Whatever it may have been originally, there is no question that the Chinese completely destroyed this stunningly located thousand-year-old structure in 1969....

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  • Samye Monastery

    From Lhasa, take a bus to Tsetang, one of those ugly prefab towns that the Chinese have planted all over Tibet. From there you take a bus to the monastery of Tranduk. Tranduk is not an exceptional monastery, but since the monks rarely see tourists, they all like to make a chat and share some buttertea. From there you can walk to Yumbulakhan, half...

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  • Trekking to EBC: the basecamp

    While my 2 fellows prefered to do some climbing around Rongphu I decided to continue to the basecamp the next morning (2 hrs.). Although it was very hard to get out of the sleeping bag, I was happy to go out early. Dazzling clear sky, sun climbing from behind the Everest, deer and yaks crossing my trails, a monastary dog following me, but further...

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  • Trekking to EBC: the way back

    Since the lodge closed and most remaining monks/nuns were leaving as well, we were glad to get a ride down in the back of the monastary truck, packed together with a few dozen of chanting Tibetans. We could have chosen to trek back via the trail to Tingri (3 days, recommended in summer), but since there are no villages and we had no supplies left,...

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  • Trekking to EBC: Rongphu

    When we arrived at Rongphu monastary the place was almost abandoned. We were told that the visitorslodge was open for the last day this season. The views were fantastic and the surroundings were excellent for climbing and hiking, but camping here...no thanks

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  • Trekking to EBC: to Rongphu Monastary

    Unforgettable is the first view on Mt. Everest since the pass, about halfway between Cho Dzom and Rongphu. It appears suddenly just when you finish another curve. The last 23 km to the (probably) highest monastary in the world are increasingly beautiful, climbing another 700 meters to 4900m. Along the road also many ruins and holy laces.

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  • Trekking to EBC: Cho Dzom (2)

    The circumstances for the people living here are tough. The closest watersource was 4 km away and the father almost every day walks all the way down to get new supplies. The children look a little dirty and neglected also because of the tsampa and the dust from the road used by trucks and (tourist-)jeeps, that splits the village in two. The mother...

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  • Trekking to EBC: Cho Dzom

    It took about 7 hours (30km.) to reach the tiny settlement of Cho Dzom. The scenery today was a little boring since mostly flat and dry. The highlights were the villages we passed. In Cho Dzom again we were welcomed greatly. There's place to sleep at the regional school, but we accepted an offer from a family to stay in their house.

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  • Trekking to EBC: to Cho Dzom

    The next day we passed a couple of villages. Always the children coming to us and shouting, sometimes asking for money but after ignoring them also happy to only walk hand-in-hand for a while. Adults and teenagers a little more reserved and very shy, but friendly if you start with a "tashi dele", taking the initiative in making contact. Help them...

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  • Trekking to EBC: Tashi Dzom

    Tashi Dzom is a very nice Tibetan village with 2 places to stay. The biggest is on the left side when you enter and a the more professional. However, I found the other one, a small family guesthouse in the street a little further away (no sign) much nicer, with the curious and helpful family staying around us all the time, just to observe and to...

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  • Trekking to EBC: over the pass

    3 km. from the junction is the village of Chay, where we were welcomed warmly.It was easy to organise a guide annex porter with horse to carry our bags to the village of Tashi Dzom. A tough day of about 30 km, which included the demanding climb over the 5170m Geu La pass. The pass is very difficult to find but more interesting for hiking than the...

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  • Trekking to Everest Basecamp (EBC)

    Trekking to Everest Base Camp (EBC) is demanding but very rewarding!During this 4 day trek we passed many 100% Tibetan villages with very friendly people, where we stayed for the night with families or at the occasional guesthouse. The trail (we started in Chay, then over the Geu-La pass), follows partly the jeeproute, and is mostly very scenic or...

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  • A trip to Nam Tso: enjoy the colours of...

    I even have been lying on the - 2 meter wide - beach for some time! Fantastic to watch the beautiful blue colours of the water. The colours change all day, and so does the weather! If the sun is out, it will be pretty hot, but it can easily be 15 degrees Celsius lower some hours later!

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  • A trip to Nam Tso: the long way to the...

    We left the village at 8. The tractor wasn't very convenient and the road terrible in the beginning, but at least we had enough time to enjoy the scenery and observe the yakboys and nomads, bringing the yaks to lower elevation. Regularly, at steeper parts, we had to go off and walk a bit, keeping us warm.

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  • A trip to Nam Tso: excellent viewpoints!

    The "island" is covered with two hills. It's really worth going up to the top since the views are great! I stayed only for 2 days at Nam Tso, but it was amazing! Then heavy snow was coming and I took the opportunity to buy a cheap seat in a 4WD back to Damxung.

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  • A trip to Nam Tso: lake with spiritual...

    At the lake there's a tiny monastery with 1 monk, living in some kind a cave. Also traveller's accommodation is available on the "island", which is connected at one side with the mainland though. Since the lake has spiritual importance, usually pilgrims are around and you'll find prayerflags and cairns everywhere. Doing the circuit around the small...

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  • A trip to Nam Tso: Largen La Pass

    The highest point on the journey is the Largen La-pass on 5150m, from where the views over the lake are superb!

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  • A trip to Nam Tso: smelly busride to...

    We took a bus from Lhasa to Damxung (on the Lhasa-Golmud Road); takes, depending on the driver and the bus, 3-5 hours. It was a great ride on good roads in a bus filled with an appealing melange of thick smoke and a tasty yak butter smell. Disturbed noise from the radio speakers on max volume. From Damxung a junction leads to the road to the Lake...

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  • Trekking to EBC: the start

    We first took a local bus from Shigatse to Lhatse approx. 6 hrs on a rough but scenic unpaved road. On the way we passed km. marker 5000, which indicates the distance to Beijing (!). There the public transport stops so hitching was the only option. Luckily we got soon a ride on an empty minibus heading for the border to pick up a touristgroup....

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  • If going overland from Lhasa...

    If going overland from Lhasa and Shigatse to the Tibetan border with Nepal, a detour will take you to Rongbuk monastery and Everest Base Camp for great vies of Everest. I missed out, to my great regret. * Picture: Kumbum Stupa, Gyantse.Beefy at http://www.tibet.freeserve.co.uk

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Tibet Off The Beaten Path

Reviews and photos of Tibet off the beaten path posted by real travelers and locals. The best tips for Tibet sightseeing.
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