Things to do in Lhasa

As the center of Tibetan Buddhism, Lhasa is featured in its ancient Buddhist temples and monasteries and other buildings. The incredible Potala Palace attracts thousands of people to visit every day. Jokhang Temple is the haven for the pilgrims where you will see the devotion of Tibetans. Drepung, Sera and Ganden Monastery are the famous "three great monasteries ", and you can learn more about Buddhism and local monks daily living. Near to Lhasa city, it is one of the most beautiful lakes in the world-Namtso Lake. Never worry about finding no places to explore in Lhasa, and take one of our Lhasa tours to get these all highlights.

Lhasa Attraction Map

Potala Palace

No. 1: Potala Palace

Type: Architectural Buildings, Castles, Religious Sites

Recommended visiting: 2 hours

As the No. 1 must-see attraction in Tibet, the Potala Palace is the center of Tibetan culture, history and religion. It is the palace of Dalai Lama. The Potala Palace is a great representation of traditional Tibet architecture. At the same time, it is a museum of arts which keeps more than 70,000 arts and more than 60,000 Buddhist scriptures. Besides, the 698 mural arts is a spectacular view in the palace. Furthermore, there are also lots of exquisitely-made tangka hanging on the walls.

Jokhang Temple

No. 2: Jokhang Temple

Type: Religious Sites

Recommended visiting: 1 hours

Jokhang Temple is a place where you can feel the strong belief of Buddhism of Tibetan. There are thousands of Tibetan coming here for pilgrimage everyday. Jokhkang, in Tibetan, means “the House of the Buddha”. In the morning, from 08:00 to 11:30, it's open to religious people. From 11:30 to 17:30, it's open to tourists. In the afternoon, you can see the Buddhism debating on the balcony of 2nd floor.


No. 3: Namtso Lake

Type: Bodies of Water

Recommended visiting: 1 day

Namtso Lake is one of the most beautiful nature views in Tibet. It looks like a slice of mirror which reflects the pure snow mountains and blue sky and forms breathtaking inverted images in the water. Ranked as one of two holy lakes in Tibet, Namtso Lake is also a popular place for pilgrimage and meditation. The great pilgrimage, Namtso Outer Kora takes place in April every 12 years according to the Tibetan Lunar Calendar.

Drepung Monastery

No. 4: Drepung Monastery

Type: Historic Sites, Religious Sites

Recommended visiting: 2 hours

Drepung Monastery used to be the largest monastery of Tibetan Buddhism. On its heyday, it had more than 10 thousands of monks. It was built in the year of 1416 by the disciple of the famous Tsongkhapa Master- Jamyang Chojey. It collected plenty of historical and cultural relics and Buddhism sculptures. Drepung Monastery is especially known as the site of the annual Shoton Festival. From the monastery, you can enjoy an amazing mountain view.

Sera Monastery

No. 5: Sera Monastery

Type: Historic Sites, Religious Sites

Recommended visiting: 2 hours

Sera Monastery, with the Ganden, Drepung Monastery, is renowned as “three great monastery” in Lhasa. It was built in the year of 1419. From the past to nowadays, Sera Monastery has been famous for its featured “Buddhism debating”. Hundreds of monks study and live here. They come to the courtyard of monastery and start to debate about Buddhism and philosophy with each other everyday.


No. 6: Norbulingka

Type: Historic Sites, Religious Sites

Recommended visiting: 2 hours

Norbulingka, meaning the Park of Treasure, is regarded as the “Summer Palace” in Lhasa. Being the largest garden in this city, it provides very amazing plateau garden landscape for you with lakes and floras in all colors. Besides, the magnificent Podrangs (Palace) are great places to visit, like the palace of the 14th Dalai Lama, where you can admire many precious paintings and relics…

Ganden Monastery

No. 7: Ganden Monastery

Type: Historic Sites, Religious Sites

Recommended visiting: 2 hours

Ganden Monastery is the “leader monastery” of the Gelug Sect. It was built by the founder of the Gelug Sect - Tsongkhapa Master. Since then, Ganden Monastery has become the seat of Geluk administrative and political power. There is currently a Buddhism University in the Ganden Monastery, and more than 400 monks studying here. It is more than 50km away from Lhasa. Hiking around is strongly recommended.

Barkhor Street

No. 8: Barkhor Street

Type: Walking Street, Religious Sites, Historical Buildings

Recommended visiting: 1 - 2 hours

Barkhor Street in the Center of Lhasa is not only the most prosperous shopping center here, but also one of the top three circumambulations in this city. As a result, you can see Buddhist believers walk clockwise and turn the prayer wheel to worship the Buddha every morning and especially the late afternoon together. This street will both be a very good place to find diverse Tibetan treasures and tell you the magic power of Buddhist religion among the followers.

Travel with China Discovery

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Recommended Lhasa Tours

Top 3 Lhasa tours chosen by most customers to explore Lhasa in the best way. Check the detailed itinerary, or tailor your own trip now with us.

Drepung Monastery Entrance

4 Days Lhasa Essence Private Tour

Lhasa City & Suburb

Yaks Follow Behind the Tibetan by the Namtso Lake

5 Days Lhasa & Namtso Private Tour

Lhasa / Namtso

Mount Everest

8 Days Classic Mount Everest Private Tour from Lhasa

Lhasa / Gyantse / Shigatse/ Everest

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