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11:04 Dec 20 2010

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Ngari: ridge of the world roof
11:02, December 20, 2010  


Photo: eng.tibet.cn


Major Tourist Sights:

*Mt. Kailash

*Lake Manasarova

*Ruins of Guge Kingdom

*Toding Monastery

Ngari is one of the latest discovered pieces of mystic land.

Situated in the northwest of Tibet at an elevation of 4,500 meters above sea level, Ngari is reputed as "ridge of the world roof" where hundreds of streams and rivers wind through thousands of snow-clad mountains.

It is contiguous to Nepal and India in the south with the Himalayas in the middle and India-con-trolled Kashmir in the west, Xinjiang in the north and Shigatse of Tibet in the south.

There are seven counties and one township under its jurisdiction. Shiquanhe (Sengge Zangbo) town, 4,200 meters above sea level and 1,665 kilometers away from Lhasa, is the political, economic and cultural center of the prefecture.

Ngari is the second largest base of live-stock products in Tibet. On this vast plateau of 345,000 square kilometers, there live 80,000 Tibetans who are mainly engaged in animal husbandry or farming-livestock raising.

The three most majestic mountain ranges in the world: the Himalayes, Gangdise and Karakunlun embrace Ngari, making it a desolate pole of the world. This "ridge of the world roof" remains charming with its diversified scenery.

The uniqaue landscape and places of historical interest here embody the harmony of man with nature. Ngari was once reputed for her three surrounded: Burang surrounded by snow-clad mountains, Zanda surrounded by earthen forests, and Rutog surrounded by lakes.

Lying in the area of the highest elevation above sea level, there exists the most difficult yet most sacred road, namely, the scripture-turning road around the Holy Mountain in Burang. And in the highest Sacred Lake above sea level in the world, you can find the purest water on earth. Burang's Holy Mountain, Mt. Kangrinboqe is believed to be the world center by four famous religions in the world. The Sacred Lake Mapam Yumco is the destination of all the pilgrims at home and abroad.

Many big rivers of South Asia originate from the Gangdise and Himalayas. The rivers Shiquanhe (Sengge Zangbo), Maquanhe (Damqog Zangbo), Xiangquanhe (Langqen Zangbo) and Kongquehe (Mabja Zangbo) rising in Mt. Kangrinboqe are the upper reaches of the Indus River, Yarlung Zangbo river, Sutlej and Ganges separately. That's the reason why Hinduism regards Mt. Kangrinboqe as the "Holy Mountain" Burang County lies in the Kongquehe Valley between Mt. Naimona'nyi and Mt. Abi. Bordered by India and Nepal, the green Kingquehe Valley has pleasant weather and rich products. It has been an important thoroughfare of the westem plateau for foreign trade and pilgrimage. Simple and crude, the international market here is lively.

In spite of bad natual conditions, rich and colorful culture has been developed here. The civilization of Zanda can be traced back to Zhang zhung civilization some 2,000 years ago and Guge kingdom, which was once prosperous in the 13th century and left b ehind it the ruins of its palace, numerous artistic treasures and famous historic sites like Toding Temple, Donggar and Piyang. The vanishing from sight of the flourishing Guge Kingdom with its tens of thousands of inhab itants remains one of the unsolved ancient mysteries in the world.

Banggong Co in ruton County is a peculiar narrow lake of extreme length of 150 kilometers and 2.5 kilometers wide averagely, the narrowest part is only five meters. It extends from Rutog of China to India-controlled Kashmir. Its east and west parts are in the territory of China, totaling about 100 kilometers, where the water is sweet and clean.In the lake there are plenty of naked carp and fish of other peculiar species and on the bird island there inhabit some 20 species of birds such as geese, penguins and black-neck cranes (Gras engricollis).

The sparsely populated Gerze and Gegyal on the northern Tibet Plateau with a lot of lakes are the paradise for the wild lives. Wild yaks, blue sheep, Tibetan wild ass, wild hares, black-neck cranes, and bears can often be seen. Sometimes you can witness the stirring scene of Mongolian gazelles and Tibetan antelopes racing with cross-country motors.

Great changes have taken place in the life and society of Ngari with further investment in development of west China by the central government. The completion of some roads and tourist service facilities make it possible for people to make a tour in Ngari. Of course, Ngari is still one of the most difficult areas for tourism in the world. Maybe, you have to confront the scorching sun, bitter cold, lack of oxygen, mountain sickness, blizzards, burning ultraviolet rays and worst road. And at many places, only basic living conditions are provided. Yet after undergoing all this, almost every tourist to Ngari fells his or her journey to Ngari is the most exciting experience in his or her life.

Source: CRI

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