Tibet – the Roof of the World is a mesmerizing destination for those travelers who are interested to look at the landmarks of Tibet. Tibet is a hilly region in the Himalayas with full of age-old intact Buddhist cultures, pristine monasteries, historical palaces, friendly people, and enchanting mountain landscapes. Beyond this, travelers who are in search of peace of mind and want to enter into the world of spirituality undoubtedly Tibet will be a paradise for them. The holy land is full of natural, cultural, religious, and historical treasures. A visitor to Tibet can make his travel experience an unforgettable moment in his life in discovering the top attractions of Tibet. Tibet’s top 10 Attractions are shown below chronologically.
1. Potala Palace
Potala Palace, one of the top attractions of Tibet, is in Lhasa. The history of this top landmark of Tibet dates back to 7th century. The spectacular palace is used to be the political and religious unification centre of Tibet. The ancient treasure of Tibet was inscribed on the World Heritage List by UNESCO in 1994. The palace is famous for its grand buildings, complicated constructions, special atmosphere, splendid artworks, precious scriptures, murals, jewels and antiques. The palace worked as the winter palace of the Dalai Lamas since the 7th century. It symbolizes Tibetan Buddhism.
2. Jokhang Temple
Jokhang Temple : As one of the most popular tourist attractions in Lhasa, Jokhang Temple uniquely occupies an unchallengeable position in Tibetan Buddhism. The UNESCO World Heritage site in the center of old Lhasa city was built in 647 by Songtsen Gampo. The temple is the oldest civil-structure building in Tibet that has a history of more than 1,300 years. It well mixed Tibetan, Tang-Dynasty, Nepalese and Indian style of architecture together
Norbulinka, the summer palace of the Dalai Lama, lies in a quiet and beautiful garden in the west part of Lhasa. Travelers to Norbulinka Palace can see the well preserved murals, superb mandalas and fascinating frescoes. One particular mural inside the palace depicts the history of Tibet and all the Dalai Lamas. The Dalai Lama was living here during his last days in Tibet. The rooms have remained as they were when the Dalai Lama left in 1959.
4. Drepung Monastery
Drepung Monastery, the largest monastery in Tibet, maintains the top attraction list to the travelers in Tibet. It was founded in 1416 by a disciple of Je Tsongkhapa, founder of the Gelukpa School. The monastery was one of the best schools of the Middle-Ages and during the 1930s it housed over 10,000 monks from all regions of Asia. After the Chinese invasion and the persecution, the monastery lost it charm among the students but it is still one of the top sites for the visitors in Tibet.
5. Tashilunpo Monastery
Tashilunpo Monastery, an important tourist attraction in Tibet today, is the residence of the Panchen Lamas. It is also one of the six big monasteries in Tibet which is located in the central area of Shigatse. The oldest monastery in Shigatse was constructed in 1447 by Gendun Drup, the First Dalai Lama. The highlight of this monastery is the statue of Maitreya Buddha made of copper with 22.4 meters high, which looks graceful and dignified in appearance. It is considered to be the highest statue in the world.
6. Mount Everest
Mt. Everest in Tibetan side also attracts the travelers. The highest mountain in the world is located at the south part of Tingri County in southern Tibet, the international border between China and Nepal. In addition to Nepal, Tibet is also important getaway for adventure lovers who desire to climb over the tallest peak in the world.
7. Yamdok Yumtso
Yamdok Yumtso, another famous attraction of Tibet, is one of the largest lakes in Tibet. The sacred lake lies about a hundred kilometers’ distance to the southwest of Lhasa. The surface of the lake, with its fathomless depth, covers some six hundred squire kilometers. To the interior of the lake ten or so hilly islands stand independently one from the other which give homes to flocks of wide ducks.
8. Namtso Lake
Namtso Lake (4,710m), one of the three holy lakes in Tibet, is the highest salt water lake in the world. The lake is renowned as one of the most beautiful places in the Nyainqêntanglha mountain range with pure clean water. The surface of water on the lake reflects beautiful image of blue sky. Thus, the local people named it Nam as in Tibetan language, Nam means “Sky”. There are 5 islands lie on the water, which is said that they are embodiments of gods. Every year, huge number of pilgrims visits this lake to worship the Holy Spirit it represents.
9. Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar
Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar, the must see landmarks of Tibet, are ever enchanting. Mount Kailash (6,714m) with its snow capped peak is an awe-inspiring sight for the visitors in Tibet. For Hindus it is the holiest of the holy place as the abode of Lord Shiva. It also has geographical significance as four great rivers flow from it: the Karnali, the Indus, the Sutlej and the Brahmaputra, which drain the vast Tibetan Plateau to contribute to the Ganges in India. Kailash is also an object of devout pilgrimage for the Buddhists. Likewise, Lake Manasarovar is situated approximately 30km away from Mt. Kailash and is one of the highest freshwater lakes in the world. The sacred lake is an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists and Hindus. It is believed that bathing in the holy water of Manasarovar cleanses one’s sins.
10. Samye Monastery
Samye Monastery, the first monastery ever built in Tibet, belongs to the Nyingmapa and Sakyapa sects. The construction consists of three styles, namely, the Han, the Tibetan and the Indian. It is said that the monastery was destroyed by fire and was rebuilt three hundred years as the residence of the 6th Dalai Lama. Finally, it was completed by Rating Rimpoche. This monastery is also one of top attractions for travelers to the Roof of the world.
Tibet is a wonderland for explorers and adventurers alike. The exotic cultures, ancient monasteries, and magnificent scenes unique to the land should not be missed by an avid traveler. Find the trip to tibet that best suits your travel purpose.