Mainling County is a county subordinate to Nyingchi City, which means “Where the herbs grow” in Tibetan.
The county seat is Mainling Town which is 480 kilometers away from Lhasa City, 72 kilometers away from Bayi District of Nyingchi City.
Mainling County is located in the southwest of Nyingchi City, connected to Medog County in southeast, Nang County in west, Bayi District in north, Gongbo Gyamda County in northwest, and Lhunze County in south.
Best travel time
From June to October
Plateau temperate semi-humid monsoon climate
Most popular sites
Pai Town — Grand Canyon Entrance, is under the jurisdiction of Mainling County. It is located at the entrance of the Yarlung Tsangbo Valley, 3000 meters above sea level. The small market town of Pai Town (Medog Transfer Station), is about 3 kilometers away from the seat of Pai Town. It is the main supply and resting area before entering the Grand Canyon and Medog County. It is also the best viewing point of Nanga Bawa Peak.
Nanyigou Scenic Area is located in Nanyi Luoba Nationality Township in the south of Mainling County about 7 kilometers away from the county seat. The total forest area in this scenic area is 820 hectares. The forest is rich in animal, planting and pastoral resources, with more than 720 species of peculiar trees and plants. The Luoba Ethnic Village is also located in this area.
Namcha Barwa Peak is 7787 meters above sea level. It means “a war spear that pierces the blue sky” or “thunder and lightning burning like fire” in Tibetan. Its huge triangular peak is covered with snow all year round, and clouds and mist are lingering, and it never reveals its true face easily. The western slope of Namcha Barwa is a steep cliff that reaches the bottom of the valley. And its northwest stretches out a long ridge, connected by a series of peaks which are all 7000 meters above sea level. The average relative height difference between Namcha Barwa Peak and the Yarlung Tsangbo Grand Canyon is more than 5,000 meters, which constitutes one of the most dramatic changes in terrain in the world. In this unique tropical mountain ecosystem, it develops and produces complex and rich vegetation types and flora and fauna.
Geography and climate
Mainling County is located in the middle reaches of Yarlung Tsangbo River valley, in between Nyainqentanglha Mountains and Himalayas. The county has a total area of 9,507 square kilometers
Mainling County is long and narrow from east to west, high in west and low in east, with wide valleys and small relative height differences. The county has an average elevation of 3700 meters.
There are many rivers in this county. Yarlung Tsangbo River traverses the entire territory from west to east with a length of 250 kilometers. There are 5 large tributaries in this county with a total length of 1,077 kilometers of rivers.
Annual average temperature of Mainling County is 8.2℃, precipitation is 641 mm, and 85% of it is from June to September. The frost-free period is 170 days.
The warm currents of Indian Ocean and Bengal Bay pass through Yarlung Tsangbo River to Mainling County, forming a special climate in which subtropical, temperate and frigid zones coexist.
Population and ethnicity
As of end of 2017, the total population of Milin County was 23,122, of which 69% were Tibetans, 11% were Lhoba, and 6% were Monba. Other ethnic groups included Han, Dong, Hui, Yi, Tujia and Qiang.
There are more than 2,900 Lhoba people living in China, mainly in the counties of Zayu, Medog, and Mainling in southeastern Tibet.
Lhoba ethnic group is one of the least populated ethnic groups in China. In order to protect folk culture of Lhoba ethnic group, Lhoba ethnic township has been established in the settlement of Lhoba people to protect the local language, architecture, and clothing.
There are many tribes in Lhoba ethnic group, mainly including “Bogar”, “Ningbo”, “Bangbo”, “Degen”, “Adi” and “Tajin”. “Lhoba” is what Tibetans call them, meaning “Southerners“. After 1950, according to actual situation and the will of the nation, it was officially named “Lhoba people”.
Lhoba people has their own languages, belonging to Tibetan-Burman group of Sino-Tibetan language family. The local dialects are quite different, and a few people are fluent in Tibetan
Lhoba people do not have their own script, and they have long retained original method of engraving wooden knots to keep track of numbers and records.
In 1959, Mainling County was established in the southwest of Zela Gang Zong, and it is under jurisdiction of Nyingchi Prefecture.
In 1964, Nyingchi Office was abolished and Mainling County was placed under Lhasa City.
In 1983, Nyingchi area was restored, and Mainling County was placed under Nyingchi area.
In March 2015, Nyingchi area was abolished and Nyingchi City was established. Mainling County has been under jurisdiction of Nyingchi City since then