Zhagyab County is located in the east of Tibet Autonomous Region and the southeast of Chamdo. Zhagyab means “the place in the rock depression” in Tibetan. In the historical materials of the Qing Dynasty, it was written as “Chagyab County” or “Drayab County”
According to legend, in the middle of the 17th century, A lama from Gelug pa of Tibetan Buddhism came to practice meditation under the hanging rocks on the hill near Kegong Village, and then the later generations called the place where he practiced “Zhagyab ”
Zhagyab County is located in the northern section of the Hengduan Mountains. It is connected to Chamdo City to the north, Gonjo County to the east, Markam County and Zuogong County to the south, and Baxoi County to the west. The county seat of Yanduo Town is 88 kilometers away from Chamdo and 120 kilometers away from Bangda Airport. The lowest elevation in Zhagyab County is 2,900 meters, and the average elevation is 3,500 meters. The terrain is unique, with high mountains and deep valleys
Zhagyab County is very well-known for its ethnic handicrafts, with high reputation in eastern Tibet for its unique local ethnic characteristics and exquisite craftsmanship.
Best travel time Summer
Local climate Plateau temperate semi-arid monsoon climate
Most popular sites
Youxi Hot Spring is located in Jitang Town,about 70 kilometers away from the county seat, and 74 kilometers away from Chamdo. There are many natural geothermal hot-springs in the scenic area, with different spring water temperatures, the highest spring temperature is about 80°C. The hot spring water is rich in a variety of minerals, and with medicinal and health care effects, and even can treat a variety of skin diseases and rheumatism. It is a well-known scenic spot for tourism, vacation and recuperation.
The Luorong (Nyagre) Stone Carving valley is about 28 kilometers away from the east of the county seat, where the stone carvings are treasured. The main Buddha is the ten-faced Guanyin, and the rest are Sakyamuni, Dari Tathagata, Princess Wencheng, Tang Dongjiebu. According to legend, the stone carving group has a history of nearly a thousand years. It cleverly uses the natural original shape of different stones and it is a rare masterpiece of stone carvings in Tibet.
Xiangkang Hall, also known as “Jamdun Ganden Shedrub Chokhor”, is 79 kilometers away from the county seat. The hall becomes popular for its “self-born” Maitreya Buddha.
Jorkhe nunnery, located in Jorkhe Village, is the largest nun monastery in eastern Tibet. It was built around 1894 AD. It was the place where monks from Gelug sect initially practiced. Later, nuns Increased, the Jorkhe monastery was transformed into a nun monastery, with 700-800 nuns at most.
Renda Stone Carvings (Denma Drag) is located in Renda Village, Xiangdui Town. On the east cliff face of Latui Mountain. It is known as the Vairocana Buddha Hall. In the middle of the hall statue of Vairocana Buddha. There are accompanying disciples and two flying goddesses on the left and right. Below are 31 lines of Tibetan language from the Tubo period and 81 Chinese characters. The content relates to the politics, religion, culture exchanges of Tibetan and Chinese in the Tubo period, etc.,
A total of 38 statues with more than a dozen inscriptions in Tibetan and Chinese were found in the gorge of Latui Mountain, which is less than 200 meters long. Among of which the largest is 3.28 meters high and the smallest is only 20 cm. It is a good place to investigate and study Tibetan history and culture.
The Saga Richu Pagoda Forest is located about six kilometers away from Zongsha Township and has a history of nearly two hundred years. There are more than 80 large and small pagodas. The large pagoda is in the shape of a Bodhisattva, with a base width of 6 meters and a height of about 10 meters. The small pagoda is simple and in shape of square. What is more commendable are the gems inlaid around the large pagoda, and garden sculptures of animals and birds enshrined in front of the pagoda.
Cangqu Mani Zhuozhu (the giant six-character mantra), also known as the Magic Princess Road, it is located in Zongsha Township. There is a legendary Magic Princess Road. According to legend, when Princess Wencheng passed by when she was married to the Tubo king of Songtsen Gampo, she used a horse whip to create a giant six-character mantra. Each character of the six-character mantra is about 100 meters high. Each font can hold 200 sheep.
Geography and climate
Zhagyab County is 182 kilometers long from east to west and 126 kilometers wide from north to south. With a total area of 8413 square kilometers, it is rich in natural resources. The minerals mainly include iron, copper, lead, coal mines, etc.
The landform types in Zhagyab County consists of a plateau in the east and high mountains and deep valleys in the west that can be divided into high mountain and deep valley area, mountain plain area and hilly plateau area.
-1), High mountains and deep valleys: Located in the western part of the county, including Jitang, Kagon, Chala, Xinka, Bari, Zesong and other townships, it accounts for 32% of the county’s total land area. The complex terrain leads to huge differences in climate, showing a clear vertical difference of weather. The shady slope is humid and the sunny slope is relatively dry.
-2), Mountain Plateau area. Distributed in the central part of Zhagyab, mainly in the Maiqu River Basin. Including Yanduo, Rongzhou, Xiangdui, Wangka, Gangka and other townships, accounting for 34% of the county’s total area, with altitude of 3000 meters-4000 meters above sea level. The river cut deepens, and the farmland at the bottom of the valley is usually 3700 meters above sea level.
-3), Hilly plateau area. Distributed in the eastern part of the county, including Azi, Zongsha, Wangbu, and Zhangjiao townships, accounting for 33% of the county’s total area, mostly above 4000 meters above sea level, with wide and shallow river valleys and gentle hills. The terrain is high, the climate is cold, and there is no forest distribution, agricultural use is dominated by animal husbandry.
There is plenty of sunshine in Zhagyab County with distinct dry and wet, and mild climate. The annual average temperature is 11℃, the average temperature in January is -1℃, and the average temperature in July is 19℃. The daily average temperature is above 5°C for a duration of 200 to 250 days, and the daily average temperature is above 0°C for a duration of 300 to 330 days. The average frost-free period is 180 days. The average annual rainfall is 350 mm, most of which are concentrated in July to September.
The Lancang River runs through the western valley of Zhagyab county with approximately 90 kilometers in length. Maiqu River is the largest river in the county with a total length of about 138 kilometers. It originates from the Angdi Mountain in the southeast of the county and merges into the upper river of Mekong river of Lancang River in Zhuka Village, which is with total length of the river is 1,428 kilometers
Population and ethnicity
As of 2010, the total population of Zhagyab County is 54,000, of which Tibetans account for 99% of the total population, and the other ethnic groups include Han, Bai, and Hui ethnic groups accounting for 1% of the total population.
The Tibetan opera in Zhagyab County is one of the famous Tibetan operas in three counties in Chamdo. It has high historical research value, and it is also a kind of opera that the people of Zhagyab County particularly like. It was listed as a district-level “intangible cultural heritage” protection unit in the Tibet Autonomous Region in 2010.
The Zhagyab Tibetan Opera was originally called “Xiangdui Tibetan Opera”, and it is one of the most famous “Blue Mask Sect” genre in Tibetan Opera. It is said that the Bugon Monastery, located in Xiangduikang Village, sent five monks to the Juemulung Opera Troupe in Lhasa to learn Tibetan opera. After that, Tibetan opera was developed in Xiangdui Town and Rongzhou Township in Zhagyab County and it was well developed.
The Kano Ruins, an ancient human site found about 70 kilometers west of Zhagyab County, confirms that people were active in this region and its vicinity during the Neolithic Age more than 4,600 years ago.
Around 200-100 BC, primitive tribes began to appear in Zhagyab, and this tribal era lasted for more than 800 years.
In the Tang Dynasty, it belonged to Tubo kingdom.
From the end of the Tang Dynasty to the Song Dynasty, it was under the control of the “Deba” forces.
In the Yuan Dynasty, it was under the jurisdiction of Yisimargan Wanhu Mansion.
In the early Ming Dynasty, it belonged to the Moer Kan Recruitment Division. During the Yongle period, it was under the jurisdiction of Hanjun Nange Ba Zangbu.
In the fifty-eighth year of Kangxi Emperor in the Qing Dynasty (1719 AD), Zhagyab was the benefice of the fourth living Buddha of Magun Temple
In the third year of Xuantong of the Qing Dynasty (1911), the Qing government set up directors in Zhagyab
In the first year of the Republic of China (1912), Zhagyab established a county.
After the 4th year of the Republic of China (1915), Zhagyab came under the jurisdiction of the local government of Tibet, and was renamed Zhagyab zong, and the “Larrang” government was established.
In 1959, the Zhagyab zong Liberation Committee was established,
In 1959, Zhagyab County was officially established
In 2014, Chamdo was withdrew from the region to establish a city, and Zhagyab County was under the jurisdiction of Chamdo city