NY1's Valarie D'Elia recently traveled to three world heritage sites in Tibet as the final leg of a 12-day trip to China.
Traveling to Tibet is definitely a bucket list trip for many, despite the controversial politics of the Chinese takeover more than 60 years ago.
I recently traveled to the “roof of the world” as a guest of tour operator China Spree. It was the final leg of a 12-day trip to China that wound up on a high note, a very high note,12,000 feet.
“I would think people should prepare a little bit for the altitude sickness,” said one traveler.
Lhasa is the spiritual core of this traditional homeland of the Tibetan people.
China Spree covers three UNESCO world heritage sites in three days, which for the most part, prohibit the use of cameras. Much of this experience is best recorded with the mind’s eye.
Tops on any tour is the Potala Palace, dating back to the 7th century, the former home of the 14th Dalai Lama, who went into exile in India in 1959.
The palace is perched above the old city and requires stamina to reach.
“It was a little tough going, especially when we had to climb the steps and so forth,” another traveler said.
The Jokhang Temple is an ancient Buddhist religious complex, where you can join the pilgrims and circumambulate, walk the circuit known as a “kora,” around Bakhor Street.
The third tourist site not to miss is Norbulingka, the Dalai Lama's former summer palace, constructed in the 18th century.
Much of Tibet’s appeal comes from its mountainous Himalayan landscape, coupled with its unique architecture.
China Spree’s tours that include Tibet run from April through October ranging from 12 to 22 days. For more information, go to www.chinaspree.com.