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Huangzhong (湟中; Huángzhōng; Tibetan: Tsongkha or Lushaer) is a city in Haidong Prefecture, Qinghai Province.


Huangzhong is about 28km southwest of Xining, and although small, it is very important to Tibetans. This is the birthplace of Tsongkhapa (Je Rinpoche), the founder of the Dalai Lama's Gelukpa (Yellow Hat) order, and it is the site of Ta'er Si Monastery, one of the six greatest Gelukpa monasteries. There are many Han and Hui in the town itself but the area around the monastery is full of tourists mingling among the throngs of Tibetan pilgrims who flock to the site from across the Amdo (Eastern Tibet) region.

Get in[edit]

Bus leaves from Xining Gymnasium (体育馆; Tǐyùguǎn) every half hour throughout the day til evening. The bus takes about one hour to travel to Huangzhong.

Get around[edit]

See[edit][add listing]

One of many temples at Ta'ersi
  • Ta'er Monestery (塔爾寺; Tǎ'ěrsì; Tibetan: Kumbum). Perfectly situated and beautifully appointed throughout the monestery with frescoes and murals. Butter sculptures, frescoes and padded embroidery are the three treasures of the monestery. Kumbum means A Hundred Thousand Buddha Images in Tibetan, and it is one of the six great Gelukpa monasteries boasting enormous influence in both the religious and secular life of the Amdo (Eastern Tibet) region. The present 14th Dalai Lama studied at this sacred site.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Four Summons Ceremonies, (At Ta'er Monestery). Four times annually with large visits of pilgrims, sunning a large portrait of Buddha, butter sculpture shows and Buddhist philosophy debates (provided you speak Tibetian).  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

Eat[edit][add listing]

To the left and downhill from the entrance to Ta'ersi there is a small area of tourist shops and a scattering a traditional Tibetan restaurants.

Drink[edit][add listing]

Here, you can buy yark acidophilus milk, only ¥2 per bottle, the taste is very good.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

  • Kumbum Hotel (Kumbum Fandian), (In the Monastery). Tibetan-style guesthouse popular with pilgrims.  edit
  • Ta'ersi Hotel (Ta'ersi Binguan). Where most tour groups end up.  edit

Get out[edit]

The bus station is about 2-3km down the road from the monastery towards Xining. During the day many taxis wait at the entrance to Ta'er Monestary and will leave to Xining only when full. They should not charge much more than ¥50-60 for the trip, so expect to pay about ¥15 per person.

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