Katok Monastery | 噶陀寺
Katok monastery is one of the 6 great monasteries of the Nyingma Pa tradition of Tibetan religion. It is located on a top of mountain with altitude of 4200 meters above sea level in Pelyul county. It was founded during the 12th century and expanded in 1656. The original gompa fell into disrepair and was rebuilt in 1956. The monastery had a reputation for fine scholarship and produced some of the greatest scholars in Tibetan history. In 1999, disciples of Kenpo Munsel and Kenpo Jamyang at Katok Monastery compiled a Katok edition of the ‘Kama’ (also ‘Karma’) in 120 volumes. It contains many rare Nyingma treaties on Mahayoga, Anuyoga, and Atiyoga that had never been seen outside of Tibet. Its mystery festival is held on June 10th on the Tibetan Calendar each year.
The drive from Pelyul county to Katok monastery takes usually 3 hours, the driving distance is about 70km, the first 35km was to drive along Jinsha River, which is one of the tributaries of the Yangtze River, to the road intersection, where one dirt road leads into the valley, then another 25km around to reach He Po village, where to cross a bridge passing through the monastery’s attached guesthouse, then entering the mountains, the altitude starts to ascending. The last 20km may take 1 hour or more to complete.
The new assembly halls, and guesthouse, and chapels are just accomplished in 2016, and the 2016 Katok festival was also the ceremony to activate those new buildings.
Address & Contact
On the top of the mountain, Shu-Song village,
4,300 meters above sea level
Free of charge
Katok Monastery Location
How to get there
Katok Monastery is located in the site almost the top of the mountain in Shu-Song village of Pelyul County. For centuries, this monastery has been isolated due to its difficult location; However, this monastery can be view from the air when taking the flight from Chengdu to Lhasa when weather would permit;
Nowadays, one dirt jeep-able road has been build that you can reach this site with auto-mobile. The village where the monastery is located in is in a valley that is nearly 30 kilometers from the valley junction, which is about 40 kilometers to Pelyul county in the south, and 60 kilometers to Derge County in the north.
To rent a 4 wheel drive from Pelyul county to Katok monastery usually cost RMB 700.00 – 800.00 round trip;