Norbu Lingka – The Summer Palace
Among the many historic sites in Lhasa, there is also Norbu Lingka (Jeweled Park), it’s a palace and park, build in 1755 by the 7th Dalai Lama Kalsang Gyatso and completed in 1783 under Jamphel Gyatso, the 8th Dalai Lama. It served as the summer residential palace of the successive Dalai Lamas, it is recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Site as a Part of “Historic Ensembles of Potala Palace”.
It is also a significant representation for Tibetan Architecture, built over 89 acres. It could have been called the ‘Highest Garden’ in the world too, the bamboos and willow trees there are as old as the park itself. If you happen to be there, there are a lot little pieces it tells about Tibetan history. The palace and temples are full of antiques and relics. You can even visit the Dalai Lamas’ bedroom and his reading room, there is probably the first radio player, gifted by Indian government, in his room too, and then there are other gifts from other gifts like carriages and toy cars gift to the 14th Dalai Lama when he was still a boy.
Nowadays, the park is all a big museum and picnic spot for Tibetan people, it’s especially crowded during Shoton Festival (Yogurt Festival). There is even a small Zoo in there, set up by the 13th Dalai Lama, Thupten Gyatso. The monkeys there are the fun part, drinking beer and Coca-Cola. Since Shoton festival just around the corner o, book a Tibet Tour with Explore Tibet and travel with a Local Tibetan guide. Follow this link to look into group tours, check for vacancies available and the departure dates. Private tours are available for booking anytime of the year.