An aura of mystery and mysticism envelopes Tibet, the -Roof of the
World-. Here stand
the mighty Himalayas, holding Tibet in splendid isolation from the rest
of the world. Mt.
Qomolongma -known to the outside world as Mt. Everest-, pierces the
highest of clouds in
the heavens. Halfway down the mountains, at about 12,000 feet, are the
wonders of this Shangri-La.
Lhasa, the capital of Tibet is 812 miles west of Chengdu or 100 miles
north of the
China/India border. In addition to its many historical and cultural
offers the traveler a view of the economic, cultural and religious lives
of the Tibetan
people as well as the progress they have made in recent decades.
PALACE - Draping the slopes of Red Hill in white, gold
and red, the
spectacular thousand-room Potala overlooks the Bharkor bazaars, but more
the center of Buddhist Lamaism- commands the respect and worship of most
- The -Holiest of Holies-, the Jokhang contains many of Buddhism's most
including the golden, jewel-encrusted Sakyamuni Buddha that was carried
to Tibet in 652
MONASTERY - Built in 1416, the Drepung ranks as one of
the most important
monasteries in Tibet. At one time, more than 10,000 monks dwelled at
Drepung, which looms
on the horizon as a huge city fortress.
- One of Tibet's four major monasteries, the Sera houses the 11-faced
golden statue of
Guan Yin, the Buddhist Goddess of Mercy.
Xigaze, also spelled Shigatse, is 304 miles southwest of Lhasa. A
spectacular crossing of
the surrounding high plateau leads to the city, former seat of the
Panchen Lama and center
of -Red Hat- sect of Lamaist Buddhism. Here, the magnificent
Monastery dominates the landscape surrounding Tibet's second-largest