Dengqen County, also known as “Tengchen County“, is located in the northeast of Tibet and the west of Chamdo. Dengqen means “big platform” in Tibetan, and it was called “Jongbo” in ancient times. It is adjacent to Riwoqe County in the east, Baqing County and Suo County in the west, Lhorong County and Banbar County in the south, Zadoi County and Nangqian County of Qinghai Province in the north.
Dengqen has the highest peak in eastern Tibet, the sacred mountain of Bon—Buja Snow Mountain. On the same mountain, you can enjoy the different natural scenery of spring, summer, autumn and winter at the same time. The most famous scenic spot in Dengqen is the largest Bon monastery – Zi Zu Monastery. It is one of the largest existing temples in the eastern Tibetan area with the largest number of followers and the best preserved Bon rituals.
The ethnic handicraft industry in Dingqing County is relatively developed, mainly producing weaving, pottery, carpet, pulu, Tibetan clothing, boots, horse gear, silverware, etc.
Best travel time May, June and September
Local climate Plateau cold zone climate
Most popular sites
The hot spring is located on both sides of the 317 national highway. There are dozens of large and small underground hot springs. The water temperature is between 38 and 50 ℃. The spring water contains a variety of trace elements that are beneficial to the human body, which have a certain therapeutic effect to kinds of skin diseases and other diseases
Buja Snow Mountain, located in the west of Dengqen County, is about 180 kilometers away from the county seat, with an elevation of 6,328 meters, and it is the highest peak in eastern Tibet. Buja Snow Mountain is the most famous sacred place of Bon religion in Tibet. It has peculiar topographical features, and it has different shapes when viewed from different directions.
Zi Zu monastery is located on Zi Zu Mountain, a famous sacred mountain in Dengqen County. It is about 4800 meters above sea level. It is one of the highest monasteries in Tibet and one of the oldest and most important monasteries of Ben religion. Zi Zu monastery was built approximately three thousand years ago, initiated by the second Tibet king Mukhri Tsanpo, and being founded by the first great master Mubangsadong, so far it is the 43rd.
Geography and climate
Dengqen County is 152 kilometers long from east to west and 146 kilometers wide from north to south. The total area is 11562 square kilometers. The terrain belongs to the undulating alpine valleys in the eastern Tibet Gorge. The highest point is Buja Snow Mountain at 6,328 meters.
The topography of Dengqen County, which is high in the northwest and low in the southeast, and the transition from the grasslands of northern Tibet to the Hengduan Mountains, constitute the unique natural landscape of Dengqen’s river valleys, flat basins, and high mountains. Among those, there are more than 10 peaks witht altitude over 5000 meters above sea level, the lowest elevation is more than 3,500 meters, the relative elevation difference is more than 2,000 meters.
The annual average temperature of Dengqen County is 3.4℃, the highest temperature is 27℃, the lowest temperature is -25℃, and the maximum frozen soil layer reaches 111 cm. The climate is cold and dry in the winter, mild and humid in the summer, the annual temperature difference is small, the daily temperature difference is large, the sunshine time is long, the annual sunshine time is 2457 hours, the annual precipitation is 641 mm, and there is no obvious frost-free period.
Population and ethnicity
As of 2014, the total population was 84,774; among them, Tibetans accounted for 95%; other ethnic minorities accounted for 5%, including Han, Kazak, Naxi, Hui, Bai, Manchu, Yi, Tujia, etc.
Reba Dance Dengqen County is the hometown of Reba dance. There are three Reba dance schools in the county, which are divided into Oto Reba, Doro Reba, and Janna Reba. Dengqen County was awarded the “Hometown of Reba Art” by the Tibet Autonomous Region Government in 2002.
Polyandry The East Women’s Kingdom (Matrilineal society) in history, located in eastern Tibet which included Dengqen county. In the concept of the locals in Dengqen County, monogamy is a very common marriage relationship. Its fatal flaw is that it cannot make the family prosperous. The polygamy system is even more unreasonable. They think that the more wives, the more children, the poor the family. On the contrary, polyandry is the most ideal form of marriage and it is most highly recommended. This is mainly due to the fact that a few brothers married a wife together, there are many people in the family, there is no need to separate the family, the labor force is strong, the family property will not be scattered, and the family becomes more and more prosperous. In other words, protecting the wealth and productivity of the family as a unit has become the fundamental reason why locals agree with the form of polyandry marriage. Moreover, in this kind of family, there is no obvious phenomenon of female superiority or male superiority
However, such family relationships and marriage patterns have been maintained in modern society. With the development of information, the concept of family members has changed and the family’s economic situation has improved rapidly, making them increasingly unreliable. Nowadays, there may be still few Polyandry exist, but all in the remotes villages in the mountains.
In the Tang Dynasty, it belonged to Tubo kingdom.
During the Yuan Dynasty, it was under the jurisdiction of Tubo Mansion of Marshal.
During the Ming Dynasty, it was under Mongolian rule. The original sixty tribes were later allocated 25 to Qinghai Yuqiao, and the remaining thirty-five gradually evolved into 42 tribes. After the death of the Mongol King, his wife dedicated the three tribes of Suo zong to the Dalai Lama, and the rest was called the 39 tribes of Hor.
From the 4th year of Shunzhi in the Qing Dynasty (AD 1647), it was under the jurisdiction of the Qing Dynasty
In the 16th year of Qianlong (1751 AD), it was directly managed by Minister of the Qing Dynasty in Tibet.
In the first year of the Republic of China (1912), the Tibetan government divided the area into Upper and lower thirty-nine ethnic groups. The upper thirty-nine tribes are under the jurisdiction of Heihe, and the lower thirty-nine tribes are under the jurisdiction of Chamdo. Since then, the territory of the lower 39th tribes had become part of Xikang Province.
In the fourth year of the Republic of China (1916), it returned to the jurisdiction of the local government of Tibet.
In the 28th year of the Republic of China (1940), the local Tibetan government divided the regions of the upper 39 ethnic tribes into 10 Zongs. Implement the Zong-ben system, Zong ben (Chief) was directly appointed by Lhasa Gaxia regime
In 1951, the first office in the 39 Tribe’s Region of the People’s Liberation Committee of Chamdo Region was established
In 1959, three Zongs of Dengqen, Sezha, and Chitu were merged to establish Dengqen County
In 2014, Chamdo was withdrew from the region to establish a city, and Dengqen County was under the jurisdiction of Chamdo city