As we were talking about central Tibet in the earlier post, we talked mainly about Lhasa, the holy place of god. In this post, there will be more of central Tibet, as much as Lhasa is the heart of Tibet, there are also other important towns that made strong contributions in creating the Tibetan history and what it is today. They are among the most essential keys to maintain Tibet off the outlined other bad influences and more importantly, Tibet Tourism. Now to go on with these, there are;
Tsetang, located in the Yarlung Valley (183 km southeast of Lhasa), isn’t very big but it is the capital city of Shannan (Lhoka) Prefecture and the fourth-largest city in Tibet. The Yarlung valley is also known as the cradle of Tibetan civilization, the first king of central Tibet, Nyatri Tsenpo, was said to be enthroned there in 2nd century. Yumbu Lhakang is the prime sight to be seen there, famous as the first building of Tibet, was built on a female-deer-shaped peak called Mount Tashi Tseri in 2nd century, later seated many kings after Nyatri Tsenpo, and it was winter palace for Songtse Gampo; then there is Samye Monastery, located 30 km from Tsetang, is the first Tibetan Buddhism monastery built approximately between 775 to 779 CE during the reign of King Trisong Detsen; Chongye is a large imperial graveyard with nine massifs, the tombs of almost 20 great Kings of Yarlung dynasty are in Tsetang too. Sometimes this place is also known as Chongye as all the tombs are situated near Chongye town and east of Chongye River. Historically Chongye was the ancient capital of the Tibetan kings until Songtsen Gampo consolidated his newly unified kingdom at Lhasa in the 7th century.
Explore Tibet has more than a few itineraries for Tsetang: 10 Days Cultural & Spiritual Odyssey，10 Days Ganden-Samye Trekking etc…