Friday Lens Affairs 176

Potala Palace in Tibet

Today I’m hosting this beautiful photograph of Potala Palace in Tibet taken by Fabian Pfitzinger from TravelPixelz Blog.

Fabian is a Berlin-based architect and photographer with a special focus on travel and landscape photography.

So far he had the chance to visit around 40 countries and he hopes his photography to inspire people to travel this world.

Check more of his amazing shots on Instagram and Facebook.

Photo Story: Potala Palace in Tibet

What can I say about Tibet? To me, it always was this mysterious place. The highest region on earth was never considered to be easy to reach and it still isn’t today.

There’s quite a lot of paperwork to do. Not to mention the financial aspect. In a word, I didn’t see myself going there in the near future.

However, in 2013 I used to live and study in Shanghai when my home university launched a research project about architecture in the Himalayan region.

They tried to cover everything from Ladakh in India to Bhutan and Tibet.

And suddenly the chance to join this incredible project popped up. Since the university didn’t have financial resources to fly in the whole team all the way from Germany, they were looking for people on the ground.

Well, with a distance of almost 3000 km (as the bird flies) from Lhasa, Shanghai is not really what one would call ‘on the ground’ but hey, it’s at least the same country. Somehow.

So the university organised the visas, the car, the driver and of course the mandatory guide/watchdog and we got to enjoy one of the best trips ever.

If 5ooo m high, snow-covered mountain passes, tiny mountain villages, crystal clear lakes and even rainforest and sand dunes sound appealing to you, then Tibet got you covered.

We witnessed traditional funerals where dead bodies are laid out on mountain tops to be eaten by birds. Visited age-old monasteries and spent nights in villages forgotten by time.

It was one of the best travel experiences I ever had. The photo of beautiful local in front of Potala Palace, you can see here is one of my favourite shots from that trip. Without a doubt, Tibet is worth every effort one has to undertake to visit it.

The Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region, China was the residence of the Dalai Lama until the 14th. It is now a museum and World Heritage Site.

The palace is named after Mount Potalaka, the mythical abode of the bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara.

It may overlay the remains of an earlier fortress called the White or Red Palace on the site, built by Songtsen Gampo in 637

The building measures 400 metres east-west and 350 metres north-south, with sloping stone walls averaging 3 m. thick, and 5 m. thick at the base, and with copper poured into the foundations to help proof it against earthquakes.

Thirteen stories of buildings—containing over 1,000 rooms, 10,000 shrines and about 200,000 statues—soar 117 metres on top of Marpo Ri, the “Red Hill”, rising more than 300 m in total above the valley floor.

Tradition has it that the three main hills of Lhasa represent the “Three Protectors of Tibet”. Chokpori, just to the south of the Potala, is the soul-mountain of Vajrapani, Pongwari that of Manjusri, and Marpori, the hill on which the Potala stands, represents Avalokiteśvara.

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8 thoughts on “Friday Lens Affairs 176

  1. Zazdroszczę Ci tej podróży. A zdjęcie świetne!
    Photo(Geo)grapher recently posted…Poenari Castle – stronghold of DraculaMy Profile

    • Ja tez zazdroszcze Fabianowi :)

  2. How lucky to get to go to Tibet and on a 3000km road trip. I’ve read a lot about Tibet – quite a sad story but what an amazing place.

    • Very true indeed, I would love to visit myself!

  3. Great Tibet story!!!

  4. Aliz M.

    Beautifully captured! What a cool hair dress too.

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