If you are not familiar with Tibet geography or confused among all places that different Tibet Tour Operators offer Tibet tour package, you need to understand the difference between Tibet and Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR). For most westerners, Tibet means Tibetan Plateau that encompasses three regions of Tibet: Central (U-Tsang), Kham and Amdo. However, for China, Tibet means areas under Tibet Autonomous Region.
Top 10 Places of Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR)
Conscious Journeys has identified 10 Top Places of TAR are ranked by popularity among travelers and Tibet travel companies. We recommend you to include them in your Tibet tour as well. However, there are many unique places and people including some of our staff’s home villages, it will greatly benefit you to request a customized tour for a truly an authentic Tibet travel experienced led by the best Tibetan guide. After all, visiting Tibet is a once a lifetime trip opportunity for most people and you want to research and prepare ahead of time so you know what to ask to include in your itinerary with a Tibet travel agency.
Jokhang is in the heart core of old Lhasa and is the holiest shrine in Tibet, built in 7th century by the great 33rd King, Songtsen Gampo. All the preeminent Buddhist statues and images brought by Princess wencheng of China and Princess Bhrikuti of Nepal are housed here. Jhokhang is currently maintained by the Gelugpa sect yet worshipping by all sects.
2. Bakhaor Square
The hustling and bustling streets of barkor will make you feel the real sense of Tibetan Culture. Barkhor street is overlaid with shops to explore for the people who love shopping. People are circumambulating the temple, some are busy with their sweet and butter hot tea to sip, some people are busy shopping and exploring the new perspective culture of Tibet. A hot spot to hang out just for fun.
3. Potala Palace
Initial utilized as a meditation, retreat and entertainment site for the great king Songtsen Gampo in the 7th century. Laterly in 1645, His Holiness The Fifth Dalai Lama built this prominent palace with 1000 shrines. Potala is the landmark of tibet and is one of the greatest wonders of the world. The stunning and spectacular figure of the potala will make you bolt from the blue.
4. Sera Monastery
Sera monastery was built in 1419 by Jamchen Chojey of Sakya Yeshe of Zel Gungtang (1355–1435), a disciple of Je tsongkhapa of Gelug sect. Buddhist philosophical debate is happening among monks everyday at sera monastery except on sunday which is one of the prime reason why westerners are so amused with Tibetan Culture. Sera monstery is housing hundreds of monks from the different parts of Tibet.
The hill is portraying as a female deer was the first ever palace in Tibet was erected in the 2nd century by the first King of Tibet, Nyatri Tsenpo on the Tashi Tsere hill in the Lhoka county.Yumbu lhakhang was the winter palace of the great king Songtsen Gampo and apparently the fifth Dalai Lama have had dwelled in the Yumbu Lhakhang. Palace had damaged drastically during the cultural revolution and has been restored in the 1960s and has redecorated elegantly.
Universal truth: Buddhism is transmitted from India to Tibet. The history brings us back to the time of Guru Padhmasambava and the great king of Trisong Detsen. The Lotus form Samye is said to be built in the year 775 by Guru Rinpoche and King Trisong Detsen with blending of Tibetan, Chinese and Indian artistic style. Bramaputra river is flowing at the north of Samye surrounding by the wide sandy areas and barren mountains mushrooming the site. Guru Rinpoche had meditated and taught Buddhism at the site for many years.
Gyantse is considered as the third largest city in Tibet after Lhasa and Shigatse. Gyantse is located in the Gyantse county in Shigatse, Tibetan Autonomous Region. Gyantse is a landmark for culture and trade exchange venue by then between Tibet, Nepal and India. Some of the most adventurous sites in Gyantse are Yumdruk Yumtso, pelkor choden monastery and Gyantse Kumbum.
Shigatse is the second largest city in Tibet after Lhasa with 3,848m above the sea level. Moderate and pleasant weather. Shigatse sits along the confluence of Nyangchu river and Yarlung Tsangpo river with fertile soil for farming. One of the most attractive site in Shigatse is Tashi Lhunpo Monastery which was founded by the great 1st Dalai Lama, a prominent disciple of Je Tsongkhapa in 1447.
Namtso means “ Lake of heave” due to its bluish color. Namtso possess spiritual significance for the Tibetan Buddhist and is a popular site for tourists from all over the world for her mythical and stunning beauty throughout the year. Namtso is the Second largest salted lake on the plateau. Namtso lake is revolving by the Nyenchen Thangla mountains with 7,000m above sea level and Tashi Dorjee hermitage on the tip of the peninsula. Namtso itself is with 4,730m above the sea level.
10. Everest Basecamp
North site of Everest is located in Tibet with 5,150m above the sea level. One of the most challenging and adventurous tourist site in the world. Mt.Everest base camp is located in the Rongbuk valley. The highest valley in the world. It’s once in a lifetime experience and lifetime earned experience to cherish for the rest of your life.