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China Day 7 - Last day in Lhasa

Added: August 26, 2009

Tags: Tibet lake monastery mountains photos
Sunday, 12th of July. Our plan is to go to Drepung Monastery. It was optional program and only 4 people decided to go. Maybe because it is expected to be worse than Ganden Monastery yesterday and the price is only slightly lower than we paid for Ganden.

Original intention was to use taxi as it is cheaper than bus, but when Tenzin went to police to obtain permit he was told groups are not allowed to use 2 taxis, they need to go as a group by bus. "Don't you know the rules?!?". Strange...

Drepung Monastery

Drepung Monastery was the most important monastery in Tibet in the past and it still is the largest one.

We did not regret it for a second coming here. It was wonderful. With so small group it was easy to get longer pauses for taking photos and more often. It was easier to listen to commentary too.

Monastery is at the foothill of mountains, so it is different from Ganden but very nice too. Big boulders scattered around make good canvases for Buddhist paintings or just for interplay of light and shadows to attract people like me - I could not stop taking photos of them as clouds made them changing all the time.





Photos of Monastery follow. We have been also in many buildings, but we were not allowed to take photos there. Apart from "traditional" buildings we have been before like the Assembly Hall and similar have seen also the kitchen. It was rather similar to kitchens I have seen in castles in Europe. Just some utensils and bowls were different, for example the churn for creation of yak butter is probably local for Tibet :-)








Additionally the mountains made very nice backdrop for detail photos. This is another thing I like to take photos of and I could spend there much more time.

BTW, as usual, our visit took longer than planned originally. I am sure, thanks to small size of our group, I contributed to that delay considerably :-)



Norbulingka - Summer Palace of Dalai Lama

We nearly missed a lunch due to our delay in Drepung Monastery (I am glad I did not contribute bit more to it). We went to our hotel for it as a plan B, because the original idea was to go to some other place.

After lunch we went to Summer Palace - Norbulingka. I do not have many photos to show here, because most of the time it was cloudy leading to terribly sombre photos.

After our visit ended, but before we left gardens we got briefing about train tomorrow. It was a bit complicated, because we are not used for efficiency at Chinese train stations. It has to be efficient otherwise all those million people would cause total chaos. More details will follow next time if I will be in writing mood ;-)



Palace of 14th Dalai Lama. It was a bit surprising, because it contains the photo of present Dalai Lama and that is something you do not see often as it is prohibited to display photos of him in Tibet.

Potala Palace from other side

Next stop was government shop with carpets, paintings and jewellery. Most of things were ugly, maybe jewellery was fine. Still, everything was enhanced with unbelievable price tag.

The shop was next to Potala Palace and Zuzka and me wanted to go to take pictures of "lake" behind Potala, so we decided to part from our group. Their next program was also interesting (for me ;-) ), but it was more important to us to save time going to hotel and back here. Rest of group went to supermarket to buy something for tomorrow as we were told it is hit or miss.

Unfortunately cloud cover and wind were against us and we failed to take photos of Potala mirrored in water.