Welcome to our blog

Welcome to our blog. During the coming year we travel (backpack) around the world and will try to regularly post some updates on our whereabouts on this page.

Montag, 27. Dezember 2010

One week through Tibet

In Chengdu we booked a tour with a driver and a guide through Tibet. We are not at all the organized tour travellers, but Tibet does not allow individuals to roam around on their own.

From Chengdu, it took 2 days by train to reach the capital Lhasa, the starting point of the tour.
We stayed 2 days in Lhasa and visited the sights (see blog before).
After that a 6 day tour through the country brought us to the border with Nepal. See a map for easier orientation ok...

The scenery is stunning, the people are fantastic, the country is HUGE, so the distances we have to drive were long, the roads are quite ok for 50% percent of the time, the rest is offroad and dirt roads, for which the 4x4 was 100% needed...

Here are some pictures to get an idea:

Sheep, yak, goats and cows are everywhere



Best restaurant in Tibet :-)
Most farmer houses are build in this style

Himalayas from the Tibetan side in the back. As it is the end of the season, going towards winter, everything is dry. Apparently it is green(er) during the summer

Prayer flags are everywhere, especially mountain passes are all covered with loads of them
Even that the Dalai Lama has long left Tibet, there are many temples with the most amazing statues, paintings and other decorations
Our guide tried to give us a quick course in Tibetan Buddhismus, which terribly failed... Buddhas for yesterday, today and tomorrow - the colors, the hands, the rituals, the meanings. Too much...
but beautiful to look at though...
Flat tire

Typical village setting

Typical vehicle

Typical way to spend the day

The air is getting thin... cookies bought in Lhasa. There is hardly enough space for the air in the packing :-)

The Mount Everest. We drove up to the base camp at 5400 meters. It was really cold and windy.
The night after our visit we stayed on around 5000 meters. The hostel was so basic that light, heat and water were not available and together with the altitude, and the - as we think - food poisoned dinner, the experience can NOT be recommended to anyone!!!!!!! This hostel can be called: one of the worst places to stay on earth. No joke.

Yak on the way

Spending the day includes a whole lot of talking and social gatherings

Getting ready to work on the land

Our second accident. The tire in the front of the picture just came off OUR car!!!

Our driver kept the car under control, and we got our without a problem. The road was nice and straight at the place where it happened. Still, we seemed to be stuck in the middle of nowhere.
Amazing but true, the only public bus, which passes only once a day, just arrived 10 minutes after the accident and took us all the way to our next stop, near the Nepalese border.
The public bus during a stop on the way. Tourists can not travel in public busses, but exceptions are made.
Never thought we would fall in that catergory right :-)

The view from the bus

The view from the bus

We made it. The bags can come down from the bus. We had one more night in the border town before crossing to Nepal.

If we would go again..... probably not.
If we think you should go.... probably yes. This is really one of the places you should go and see for yourself!

Sonntag, 26. Dezember 2010

People in Lhasa, Tibet

People in Tibet are great – unfortunately for a large part also really poor.
These pictures are taken on and near the local market.

Part of the people are not from Lhasa, but are Tibetan visitors from far away villages.  

We are still astonished about the above practise...

Most people really like to have their picture taken.

Lhasa, the capital of Tibet

The capital city Lhasa is only small, but there is much to see.
The city and the people are so different from any other place we have visited!

Here are some impressions:

Eating food on the street is no problem.
Corn and some deep fried dough 'things' for breakfast...
Sweet potatoes, baked over the fire, really nice actually.

A variety of YAK cheeses


The Dalai Lama is important. The amount of followers is going down though
Here at one of the schools we visited

Precision work, a mosaic made completely out of SAND...

  Yak butter is used to burn candles
Here the Yak butter for sale for offering pupose
Very many pilgrims were visiting the city when we were in Lhasa. Mainly people from the country side. Some of them were looking at us as if we were aliens.

The Dalai Lama's summer palace

The Dalai Lama's winter palace

Even that these buildings are not used anymore by the Dalai Lama, they are really popular tourist and pilgrim sites now.