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Draksum-tso
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City: xizang
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Description Attractions

      Eastern Tibet is blessed with many beautiful lakes but this is arguably the best of the lot.Known as Bangsongcuo in Chinese,Draksum-tso,and particularly its monastery island,is a photographer's dream.It is also a great opportunity to dust off those hiking boots and that tent that you have been lugging around. 

     Apart from the sheer beauty of the lake and its surrounding 6000m peaks,the site has strong connections to Gesar of Ling, the semi-mythical ruler of eastern Tibet,and Guru Rinpoche,the Indian sage,both of whom are said to have resided at the lake.

     The entrance fee to the area is payable at a toll gate 33km past the Hwy 318 turnoff at Bahel, and 4km before the lake. PSB officeers here and at the hotel by the lake will want to see your travel permits.A free shuttle bus takes visitors from the gate to the lake,although it is fine to walk.

      The highlight of the lake is the charming Tsodzong Monasery,a small Nyingmapa chapel sited on a photogenic island just off the southern shore.This is where the bus drops you off.

      The monastery was founded by Sangye Lingpa in the 14th century.The main chapel has statues of a wrathful and peaceful Guru Rinpoche and smaller statues of Sakyamuni,Chenresig and Kongtsun Demo,a local protector,on horseback.The statues were actually shot and the n burned by Red Guards during the Cultural Revolution,before being restored by the famous local lama Dudjom Rinpoche and his son Chuni Rinpoche.In the corner of the monastery is what is said to be a stone hoofprint of Gesar's horse.You may see Tibetans rubbing this on their backs to take advantage of its healing powers.The steps to the monastery are flanked by ancient-looking male and female fertility symbols.


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