Tibet Kayaking by Gowa
Boating on Brahmaputra River
Sailing on Brahmaputra river by tibetan traditional boat that made of Yak leather
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This trip is to experience the traditional Boat of Tibetan ‘Gowa’, a boat that made of Yak Leather that have been using as ferry boat to cross Brahmaputra River to transport goods and people since hundreds of years ago, and also being used nowadays by local nomads, whom live on the two sides of the largest river of Tibet – Brahmaputra.
Wood is scarce in much of rocky, dry Tibet; so Tibetan traditionally use leather from yaks to make boats known as ‘Gowa’. The yak leather is stitched into large pieces, which are then stretched across bowed crossbeams and tied with leather straps. The capacity of a bigger one holds about 10 people; the smaller one can hold 2 or 5 people. The Gowa can be controlled by a single boatman and because it itself is light can be carried by just one man. This is a special experience, as nowadays few of these yak skin boats exist any more in Tibet.
Day 1 Arrive in Lhasa: By flight to Lhasa, the guide will meet you at the airport, and transfer you to Lhasa city with about 1 hour driving (650 km). En route, we’ll visit to Nie-Tang Buddha, a Buddha image engraved in the mountain face. Afternoon an easy walking visit to Luophuk lingkar – the summer palace of Dalai Lama.
Day 2 Lhasa: We visit Potala Palace, Jokhang temple and Barkhor Bazar.
Potala, the winter palace of the Dalai Lama. Stunningly dominating the skyline of Lhassa atop the crest of Marpo Ri hill, the seventh-century Potala is considered Lhasa’s most holy destination for a pilgrimage. Winding up the hill, a stone path leads to the 14-story, 1000-room. Each day, thousands of pilgrims give the prayer wheels lining the path a clockwise spin as they make their way up to the entrance.
The Jokhang Monastery is the home of the statutes of the revered Buddha, Shakyamuni. While all Buddhist statutes are magnificently robed in colorful brocade adorned with pearls, turquoise, coral, and silver, solid gold bowls of holy water rest before Shakyamuni as well as offerings of yuen (money) and khatas (scarves) left by pilgrims.
Day 3 Lhasa: Visit Sera, Drepung, Nechung monasteries.
Sera, one of the three largest monasteries of Gelugpa, sits at the foot of Hill Tatipu. It is as prestigious as Drepung and Ganden, which had a longer history. Sera in Tibetan means Wild Rose Garden since opulent wild rose woods once grew around it.
Drepung monastery. Drepung once housed 10,000 monks, If we’re lucky, we’ll quietly ease into a dark columned hall to see and hear the lilting, booming chanting of the sutras, or perhaps sit under a willow tree and watch as the monks engage in theatrical debate. Nechung Monastery the seat of Nechung, Tibet’s State Oracle. Major decisions of the state are made in consultation with the Nechung Oracle.
Day 4 Lhasa to Gangkar: Satrt from Lhasa, detour to Yamdrok Lake that is one of four holy lakes. The other 3 lakes are Lhamo La-tso, Namtso and Manasarovar. It is revered as a talisman and is said to be part of the life-spirit of the Tibetan nation. The largest lake in southern Tibet, it is said that if its waters dry, Tibet will no longer be habitable. This Turquoise like lake to Tsetang across Karo la pass and Kampa la pass at 5050m then to Chushui, wherewe heading east along Brahmaputra Rriver downstream to Gangkar Chode, where we set up our first camp by Brahmaputra River
Day 5 Gangkar to Dorje Drak: Departure in the morning, locad up gear in the Tibetan Gowa, following Brahmaputra River downstream to Dorje Drak, where Dorje Drak monastery is located in, and it was one of the primary Nyingma monasteries in Tibet. It was destroyed in the 1960’s last century, and later partially reestablished.
Day 6 Dorje Drak to Ngadrak: Keep taking the gowa along the Brahmaputra river downstream to Ngadrak, where one Karma Kagyu traditional monastery is on the east bank of the Drak-Chu, about 6 km further inland. It comprises one assembly hall adjoined by 5 chapels, and a monastic residential area, where the caretakers of the Drakyul cave nearby.
Day 7 Ngadrak to the holy caves of Drak Yangdzong: Departure on foot, climbing a white limestone cliff, many carved relief images are visible near the caveentrances, depicting Padmasambhava, Sakyamuni Buddha, Milaripa, animal figures…etc, the cave is about 4500m above the sea level, visit to the caves of “Shinje Drup Zho”, ”Shinje Rolpei Drub” & ”Jago Rangjung Drupuk”; return to the camp by Brahmaputra river.
Day 8 & 9 Ngadrak to Samye, then to Tsetang. This the third day being in the Gowa, which is also the last day of traveling by Gowa. Reach at Surkar, near Samye, arrive at Samye monastery by tractor. Samye monastery, Located in the quiet piedmont area of the Tsetang region, it is the first temple to be built in Tibet and the first complete with the three Buddhist jewels of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. Samye monastery is built with the shape of a huge Mandala. Surrounded by a circular wall, it is a representation of cosmos. The different buildings are arranged according to a complex symbolism, around the Utse, the central hall, housing the hall of prayers. This monastery is sacred because of its magnificent architecture, long-term history, and special status within Tibetan Buddhism. Regarded as a shining pearl of Tibetan Buddhist architecture, it is a place many Buddhist believers long to visit. In Tsetang, we are going to visit to Yamsang monastery, Yongphuk Lhakang.
Day 10 Your journey is about to end on this day, we will assist you to check out and drive to the airport or train station, you will departure for your next destination, the transfer timings will be arranged according to your flight or train schedule.
Prices and Departure
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Prices are for 2013
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