Join our Mailing List

"On my part, I remain committed to the process of dialogue. It is my firm belief that dialogue and a willingness to look with honesty and clarity at the reality of Tibet can lead us to a viable solution."

A day in the life of a traveler in Tibet

May 14, 2009

Tai Kuncio
May 12, 2009

Tibet is one of those places that most all
adventure-oriented travelers want to visit at
least once in their lives. It calls to them like
some kind of mecca as a land of mystery, chaos,
turmoil and excitement - all things that an
adventure traveler looks for when choosing their next destination.

Two things you must have, though, if you're going
to plan a trip to Tibet, are patience and time.
Getting around the country isn't quite as easy as
it looks when you look at a road map. Rivers
flood, rocks slide, avalanches and mudslides
occur regularly. Buses break down, roads close,
military checkpoints hinder your plans to hit
that remote monastery. But, if you're looking for
a true adventure, all of those things should make
you salivate - not shy away from this incredible destination.

Tibetan roadsMany choose to stay in Lhasa - an
amazing example of two cultures colliding - and
that can certainly be enough to fill a week of
your time. But, should you decide to venture out
of the capital, be prepared for hours - sometimes
days - of delays, even if you're only traveling a couple hundred miles.

To relay just one of the many adventures I
encountered on my two week trip... Our Land
Cruiser was heading back to Lhasa from the famous
Namtso Lake which is the world's highest salt water lake (at 4720 meters).

NamtsoWe were descending from a 5000+ meter
mountain pass on a rugged, unpaved road which ran
alongside a river so swollen that our vehicle
could have easily been swallowed by it without
anyone ever noticing. Snow was falling and the
switchbacked road was getting slippery. Every
turn was harrowing - especially since the defrost
was not functioning and our driver was forced to
use a filthy rag to continuously clear the
windshield. When we finally got to the bottom of
the slope, he slammed on the brakes to avoid
something and the car did not even slow.
Apparently our brakes had been failing the whole
way down. Luckily, we coasted safely into the
nearest village. The next 8 hours were spent
waiting for our car to be fixed, only to find out
the part we needed was no where to be found and
we were going to have to take the next public bus
back to Lhasa. The saga doesn't really end there but you get the idea...
CTC National Office 1425 René-Lévesque Blvd West, 3rd Floor, Montréal, Québec, Canada, H3G 1T7
T: (514) 487-0665
Developed by plank