Zhongba County, also known as “Drongpa County“, is a county in west of Shigatse City. Zhongba means “land of Wild Yak” in Tibetan. It is located in the north of the Himalayas, on both banks of the Maquan River (Horse Fountain River), bordered by Burang County in the west, and Gegyai County and Gerze County in the north. It borders Coqen County and Saga County in the east and Nepal in the south, with a border line of 357 kilometers long. Its county seat is Larang Township with altitude of 4,772 meters above sea level, 910 kilometers away from Lhasa City and 632 kilometers away from Shigatse City.
The largest river in Tibet and also the highest river in the world, The Yarlung Tsangbo River originates from Jima Yangzong Glacier in Zhongba County. Jima Yangzong Glacier is therefore listed as a national ecological function reserve. The economy of Zhongba County is mainly based on animal husbandry, raising sheep, goats, yaks and horses.
Best travel time From June to October
Local climate Plateau temperate semi-arid climate zone
Most popular sites
Rabuje Tso Lake, means “extremely prosperous lake” in Tibetan. Located in the northwest of Zhongba County seat. It is a freshwater lake surrounded by natural pastures with altitude of 4931 meters and an area of 9 square kilometers
Zhadong monastery, also known as “Tadong Monastery“, is located in the old Zhongba along the 219 National Road, about 594 kilometers away from Shigatse City, about 22 kilometers away from new town of Zhongba, with an altitude of about 4700 meters, and a history of more than 1,300 years. Zhadong means “forehead on top” in Tibetan, and it is a Gelug pa monastery
Goxia monastery (Gosha monastery), its full name is “Gosha Renzen Datan Monastery”. In Tibetan, it means that the gate of monastery faces east, that Buddhist culture shall last forever. Goxia monastery is located at the foot of Pari Mountain about 150 meters from Najiu Township.
Dhare monastery is located 20 kilometers north of Dhare Village of Payang (Baryang) Town. In Tibetan, “Dha” means horse, and “re” means a small field where horses are kept. The grassland here is vast and fertile. It used to be the place where King Gesar ran his horses. Hence, local people rasied fund and built this temple which belongs to the Kagyu pa
Geography and climate
Zhongba County is 294 kilometers long from north to south, and 254 kilometers wide from east to west; the total land area is 43594 square kilometers; it accounts for about 1/4 of the total area of Shigatse with an average elevation of 5,000 meters.
Zhongba County is a typical plateau and mountainous landform.
According to incomplete statistics, there are more than 4,000 high mountains above 5000 meters above sea level in this county, including 679 high mountains with altitude of over 6000 meters.
At the junction of eastern Zhongba County and Saga County, Lhobo Kangri Peak of Gangdis Mountain is 7,095 meters above sea level, which is the highest point of Zhongba County. The lowest point is the water level of Chamutuo Salt Lake, at an altitude of 4421 meters, which is also the lowest point in Zhongba County.
Longgar area north of Gangdise Mountains belongs to South Qiangtang Plateau, with an average elevation of 4500-4700 meters. The terrain is high and open, densely covered with large and small lakes, lake basin plains and flat dam beaches.
Between Gangdise Mountains and Himalayas, there is famous Yarlung Tsangbo River (Tamchog Kambab — Horse Fountain River) valley. The topography is open. The bottom of the valley is 2 km to 6 km wide, and the widest part can reach more than 10 km, which are usually with altitude of 4600 to 4800 meters above sea level. It is the main area of county animal husbandry production.
The climate in Zhongba County is dry, cold, windy and sandy, and sunny. The annual temperature difference is large. The annual average temperature is -0.3℃, the lowest temperature is -40℃, the annual sunshine hours are more than 3000 hours, the annual frost-free period is about 110 days, and the annual precipitation is 280 mm.
Population and ethnicity
As of 2003, the total population of Zhongba County is 20,000 people, Tibetans accounted for 99% of the county’s total population, in addition to a small number of Han, Tujia, Miao and other ethnic groups.
Zhongba, known as Zhuzhu Zong in the past, was under the jurisdiction of Ali Garpon (Ali Garpon was title of chief officer of Ngari in western part of Tibet during Qing Dynasty. It means “a comprehensive management of government affairs in the Ali area”.)
In 1960， Zhongba County was established , under the jurisdiction of the Ali Prefecture Administrative Office.
In 1962, Zhongba County was placed under the jurisdiction of Shigatse Prefecture Administration Office.
In 2014, Shigatse Prefecture was abolished and the prefecture-level Shigatse City was established, and Zhongba County has been under jurisdiction of Shigatse City since then