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Home Tibet Themes Horse Festival

Horse Festival
What's On: Tens of thousands of herdsmen in their holiday best go camping outside of Nagqu City. On the vast expanse of grassland are scattered many camps, lasting several miles. After a grand opening ceremony, various recreational and trade activities will start, such as horserace, yak race, tug of-war, carrying rocks, doing sgor-gzhas (Tibetan group dance), and performing Tibetan operas.

The Horse racing festival held in Nagqu is the grandest of the racing festivals and events held throughout Tibet each year. Dressed in traditional military attire, the Tibetans proudly display their riding skills, attracting enthusiastic crowds of locals and pilgrims. Lasting several days, many songs, dances, and performances of Tibetan drama take place during the festivities to celebrate the heroes of Tibet's past.

August is the peak season for Nagqu grasslands, with big wind and rain in the night and shines bright at daytime. The annual grassland horse-racing festival is held. There is a wide lawn at the north side of Nagqu. The local people called this as "Zhong Yin Ka Duo" grassland. During the horse-racing festival, there will be thousands of tents setting up on that area.

It makes the grassland look like a small town. The horse racing festivals and fairs are the traditional occasion for horse trade. The buying and selling of horses at these fairs attracts Tibetans from near and far for celebrations during the colorful week of activities.

Shigatse is the second largest town in Tibet. Shigatse has long been an important trading town and administrative center. The main attraction in Shigatse is Tashilhunpo Monastery, the seat of the Panchen Lama. Built in 1447 by a nephew of Tsong Khapa, the monastery once housed over 4000 monks.

Apart from a giant statue of the 27 meters high Maitreya Buddha, the monastery is also famed for its Grand Hall, which houses the opulent tomb containing 85 kilograms of gold and masses of jewels of the forth Panchen Lama. The temple is also famous for its gold and silver craftsmen, who still use traditional techniques to craft gold and silver products. At the same time, there is "resources exchange meeting held in Nagqu.

This is a large trading event with lots of rich people there. Their necks and waists are full of jewelleries, and you will find all kinds of clothing. That is the most convenient and economic time to visit and understand the tradition of Nagqu in North Tibet.

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