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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Tourism surging in western Tibet’s once remote Ngari region

A tourist takes photos of the ruins of the Guge Kingdom in Ngari, Tibet. (Photo courtesy: Xinhua)
A tourist takes photos of the ruins of the Guge Kingdom in Ngari, Tibet. (Photo courtesy: Xinhua)

(TibetanReview.net, Sep08, 2018) – The once remote western Tibet’s region of Ngari is remote no more, for not only have Chinese immigrants flooded it to make it their home in large numbers but it has also become a major tourist attraction following China’s development of significant transport and tourist infrastructure there. During the first eight months of this year, a total of 594,464 people visited the prefecture, a significant increase from last year, reported China’s online Tibet news service eng.tibet.cn Sep 7. Tourism revenue had reached more than 724 million yuan (106 million US dollars), the report added.

The report noted that with the completion of the paved No. 219 National Highway, the building of the Ngari Kunsha Airport, as well as improvements to tourist services, more and more tourists had chosen to visit Ngari Prefecture in recent years.

They had travelled in RVs, motorcycles, and off-road vehicles to tour around the area, the report added.

The number of tourists who visited the Prefecture throughout 2017 was stated to have exceeded 660,000.

The prefecture is the origin of the Yarlung Tsangpo (which becomes the Brahmaputra River upon entering India), the Indus River, and the Ganges River.

The report noted that the region is often called “the ancestor of ten thousand mountains” and “the source of a hundred rivers”. It is best known as the location of Gang Rinpoche (Mt Kailash), which is sacred to Hindus and Jains as well as to the followers of Tibetan Buddhism and of Tibet’s ancient religion Bon.

Rahul Gandhi, the leader of India’s main opposition Congress party, is currently on a pilgrimage to Mt Kailash, the abode of Lord Shiva, the Hindu ‘God of Gods’, amid a blaze of publicity in his home country.

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