Lhasa

Trip Start Sep 26, 2013
1
7
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Trip End Oct 26, 2013


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Flag of China  , Xizang (Tibet),
Wednesday, October 2, 2013

It was a very early morning today as we left the hotel at 05:30 to head to the airport in Xi'an. After checking in and clearing security we boarded our flight to Lhasa via Xining. The flight was not very exciting, other than being given some sort of mystery sandwich for breakfast. It tasted a bit like tuna but there was no way to be sure. The only other but of entertainment came at the end of the flight watching all the Chinese passengers in a mad rush to get off the plane before the plane has even stopped moving. We had to get off the plane for about 20 minutes once we got to Xining before getting back on and continuing our journey. It took about 5 hours total to finally get to Lhasa.

Once on the ground in Lhasa we collected our bags and cleared security. With all of our permits in order we had no issues getting in. We were met by our local Tibetan guide Tashi who greeted us and presented us with a traditional white scarf as a welcoming. We boarded our transport for the 1 hour drive to our hotel. The drive was interesting as we went through some farmland that were still using very traditional methods for cultivating the land. Once on the edge of Lhasa things got very modern where the Chinese government is currently building new Lhasa as a place for Chinese immigrants to move to. Finally we hit old Lhasa where our hotel is located which is still very heavily populated by Tibetans with its eloquently decorated buildings. Our hotel is a really neat place very elaborately decorated and all painted by hand. We got our first reminder we were at altitude climbing the stairs to get to out room.

After settling in and getting some water to help with the altitude, Drujal took us for a walk down the main streets around the hotel to one of the nearby restaurants. The cook was Nepali so we took advantage and had some really good curry on the roof to patio overlooking one of the main squares of the city. The police/military presence is very noticeable with uniformed officers on most street corners and plain clothes soldiers on the rooftops. After our meal we went through the local market where the locals do their shopping on the way back to the hotel for some rest. Our first couple of days have quite a bit of rest built in as we acclimatize to the altitude. For supper we ate at the hotel restaurant which was really good. I has yak chow mien. There is not much planned for the rest of the night. We have been told not to wonder around after dark so we'll get some rest as we have some walking around to do tomorrow when we start visiting monasteries.

André and Gina
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Comments

Mama on

Papa just measured the WTF plant outside. Over 27ft long and still growing at least until freeze tonight maybe!

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