Xigaze Things to Do

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    by blueskyjohn
  • Things to Do
    by blueskyjohn

Most Recent Things to Do in Xigaze

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    Tashilhunpo Kora

    by blueskyjohn Updated Jul 6, 2013

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    I never had the time to do the Tashilhunpo Kora when I'm in Shigatse. This time I finally did it. It's a wonderful Kora, long with prayer wheels nearly the entire way. The Kora starts to the left before you enter the main parking entrance. It is easy to find by just following the pilgrims. If not, it is the first alley on the right. The Kora begins on a stone walkway and remains that way for the entire Kora. The prayer wheels start immediately as well. You begin to ascend and eventually get to a point where the path makes some twists and turns. You begin to see the tops of buildings in Tashilhunpo and the all of Shigatse.

    When I got behind the monastery, there was a heard of goats wondering up and down the path. Also in the rocks that border the pathway. As you start to descend you will see a Dzord in front of you. It is worth while to continue toward the Dzord. The Kora never reaches the Dzord. It will take you out onto a road. Follow the road down hill until it ends and turn right. This will get you back on the main Kora and the prayer wheels.

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    Sidewalk vendors

    by blueskyjohn Updated Jul 6, 2013

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    Near the entrance of Tashilhunpo Monastery is a row of vendors selling prayer beads and some Tibetan items. There is not as many as you would find in Lhasa. But my experience is that the vendors in Shigatse will negotiate a little more and move off their price. You can get them pretty low if you try and walk away a few times.

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    Tashilhunpo Monastery

    by blueskyjohn Updated Jul 6, 2013

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    I recommend visiting this monastery if you are in Shigatse. The monks here are very friendly and there are many things to see. There is a fee to get in, 55 rmb. The monastery is in town and you can get there by a quick taxi ride that should cost only 5 rmb.

    Update 2013: Entrance now costs 80 rmb and the taxi ride is 10 rmb. The entry fee is usually covered by your guide service since currently, that is the only way to enter.

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    Tashilhunpo Monastery

    by ozalp Written Oct 26, 2009
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    This monastery is like a city complex like Sera Monastery in Lhasa. It is the traditional seat of Panchen Lamas. Tashilhunpo Monastery is the biggest functioning monastery in Tibet and one of the 6 biggest Gelukpa monasteries. In its best times, 4700 monk lived in Tashilhunpo. Now only 800 monks are living here. This monastery founded in 1447 by Gendun Drub, the first Dalai Lama.
    The monastery has lots of residents for monks and temples, of course. The tallest building of the monastery is Maitreya Temple, which houses a gigantic Maitreya Buddha statue. Statue has 26.2m height and contains 279 kg gold, 150.000 kg copper, and lots of precious stones… The building is not big enough to see it all. We just wandered around and combined the pieces on our minds. Like many other temples, it was forbidden to take photos here.
    You can see the love of gardening here, too. This is something I witnessed almost in all monasteries in Tibet. Like a fight against the yellow, infertile lands of Tibet, there were colorful flowers in the monasteries.
    We were so lucky, encountered some female monks, Bhikkhuni here. They are so few, so this was like a big prize. One of them wanted us to take her pictures. She was a friendly and beautiful person.
    We took a peek to inner courts of monks’ residents. All the houses are opening to the same square court with a well and there are lots of courts on our way down to exit. Before leaving the monastery, we learned that there was a ritual, a dance show (which usually tells the Buddhist stories) on an area by the monastery and headed there.
    People were sitting on the ground and watching the masked dancers. There were lots of street vendors selling fried potatoes, etc. It was a big crowd for a city like Shigatse. I was so ignorant about Buddhism to understand the story of the dance. I watched it for a while and then started to watch people.

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    Sakya Monastery

    by nattybabe Written Jun 17, 2007

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    The monastery is 130km from Shigatse and Sakya means "Grey Soil" in Tibetan as it is surrounded by grey soil. Sakya is the main monastery of the Sakyapa Buddhism sect and is deemed as the Second Dunhuang. The Drum River divides the monastery into two parts, north and south.

    Unfortunately I was ill the day we visited the monastery and was unable to go, but my camera made the trip and I've attached a few photos so you know what it's like.

    Admission Fee: Y45

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    Sayka

    by nattybabe Written Jun 17, 2007

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    Sakya was once the centre of political and religious power in Tibet. Many buildings featuring the town's unique architectural style suffered the ravages of the 1960s, but the well-fortified citadel still stands and much rebuilding is in progress.

    The town itself is very small and run down but you get a feeling that you’re in the real Tibet. Unfortunately I was very sick the day we were in Sakya and didn’t get out of bed but I have photos taken for me and the stories of my fellow travelers.

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    Tashilhunpo

    by nattybabe Written Jun 17, 2007

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    One of the 6 great Gelukpa monasteries, founded by the 1st Dalai Lama in the 15th Century, it has flourished since its head, the Panchen Lama, was recognised as the embodiment of the Amitabha Buddha.

    The huge monastery, built in 1447, was once inhabited by over 4000 monks, but nowdays, only 600 remain there. It is the seat of the Panchen Lama.

    The monastery complex contains a number of worthwhile sight and is a fantastic place to wander amongst the buildings, talking to the monks and taking in the quiet setting. The Grand Hall contains the tomb (containing more than 85kg in gold and lots of jewels) of the 4th Panchen Lama. Also housed is the tomb of the late 10th Panchen Lama as well as the 5th to 9th Panchen Lamas all in beautifully decorated and elaberate stupas. At the western end a tall building houses the world's largets Maitaya - 26m tall, made from 300kg of gold and 150 tons of copper and brass.

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    Best view over the city

    by tremendopunto Written Sep 13, 2006

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    From the Drölma Ri you can enjoy the best view over the city and its monastery. Start with the Kora around the monaster and you end up in the old quarter of Shigatse, one of the last places that remind of how Shigatse must have been like 50 years ago.....

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    Tachilhunpo Monastery

    by tremendopunto Updated Sep 13, 2006

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    The Tashilunpo is a magnificent monastery in Shigatse. It is one of the six great Gelugpa monasteries and home of the Panchen Lama - who is, by the way still hidden by the Chinese. Situated at the foot of Drölma Ri, there is also a nice Kora (or pilgrimage) around the monastery possible. Dont miss it, since you will have a great view over the huge monastery and the complete city of Shigatse.

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    The Kora around the Tachilhunpo Monastery

    by tremendopunto Written Sep 13, 2006

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    This is a nice Kora (or pilgrimage) around the monastery that goes up a little bit on the foot of Drölma Ri mountain. Dont worry, it is an easy walk - no comparison to the high Kora of Ganden (another tip). Dont miss this Kora, since you will have a great view over the huge monastery and the complete city of Shigatse.

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    Xigatze, markets and jewelry.

    by sachara Updated Sep 27, 2004

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    Xigatze, market

    Like in other Tibetan towns is the market an important place for the Tibetans. Jewelry of all kind is very popular. The gold and silver jewelry and ornaments with all kind of stones are still made with the traditional techniques and skill at high level.

    I liked their jewellary a lot. At the contrary the Tibetan women showed their admiration for my long wooden earrings from home -in blue and turquoise- by putting out their tongue very far. I never saw before such long tongues.

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    Xigatze, markets

    by sachara Updated Sep 27, 2004

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    Xigatze, market

    In the north part of Xigaze, below the Xigaze Dzong, you can find the colourful sheltered markets. It's always nice to walk around at the markets, so it's here, looking at the people, the mule charts and everything else what happens.

    The markets are open the whole day from about 9 am till 7 pm. It's a good place to buy some food like bread and yoghurt or take a little snack.

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    Xigatze, markets

    by sachara Updated Sep 27, 2004

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    Xigaze, market

    Xigaze with its population of about 40.000 is the second largest city in Tibet. Except the Tashilhunpo Monastery there is not much to see in this mainly Chinese town with grey concrete blocks.

    The only other interesting place in Xigatze to visit are the nice markets, sheltered with roofs. They sell a lot of goods from vegetables, meat, yak butter, little snacks, clothes and houseware.

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    Tashilhunpo Monastery, the beautifull colors.

    by sachara Updated Sep 27, 2004

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    Tashilhunpo, colourfull windows

    In the Tashilhunpo Monastery complex you can find the great Hall of the Maitreya, but also nearby the Great Hall with several pagodas of former Panchen Lamas. Here you can see frescoes and statues depicting the life of Tsong Khapa and his disciples.

    Many of the other buildings in Tashilhunpo are dismantled during the Cultural Revolution. The most serious loss was the burning of the sutras.

    Walking around in the huge monastery I admired the beautiful colours of the buildings of the monastery with a lot of ocre and brown, but also turquoise and yellow.

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    Inside the Tashilhunpo Monastery

    by sachara Updated Sep 27, 2004

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    Tashilhunpo Monastery

    The biggest building of the Tashilhunpo monastery is the Matreya Temple. This temple, built in 1914-1918 for the 26M high Buddha Maitreya, is looking like a fortress.

    The matreya is the Buddha of the future or Champa in the Tibetan language. The Champa of 26 M high is a gold-plated bronze image, sitting on a lotus seat. From the third storey you can see his head from nearby.

    Tibetans believe, that Champa will return and rule the world, when all human beings have earned deliverance from suffering.

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