Center and Location
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Dechen Choekhor Monastery,
Gonggar, Tibet.
Dechen Choekhor Kullu 2-ER.jpg
Dechen Choekhor Monastery,
Kullu, India.
Druk Dechen Choekhorling, Gonggar, Tibet.

Druk Dechen Choekhorling Tibet, the mother monastery of great importance in Drukpa Kargyu Lineage, was established by 3rd Drukpa Choegon Rinpoche approximately 400 years ago. Since then it has been serve as the main seat of the Drukpa Choegon Rinpoches and Drukpa Yongzin Rinpoches. This ancient monastery is located at Gonggar County, Lhoka Prefecture, Tibet.

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A magnificient double rainbow appears above the clear blue sky of Dechen Choekhor Monastery, Lhasa, Tibet

Gonggar is the place to visit for anyone who is interested in history, geology, and geography, particularly as they relate to Buddhism. The county is best known for its Tibetan Buddhism of various schools, such as the Gonggar Dzong and the Gonggar Choede Monastery are among the best known in Tibet.

Gonggar Location:

Gonggar Tibet is located in the southern portion of Tibet in the Lhoka Prefecture
(Shannan Prefecture) and totals an area of almost 900 square miles. The mother river of Tibet, the Yarlung Tsangpo, or Brahmaputra, flows through the county. Gonggar is a flat land with an altitude averaging 12,300 feet. The Gonggar Airport was constructed here since the county is located on a portion of the Yarlung Tsangpo River that is very wide. Rawa-me, the capital of Gonggar, is located just east of the airport. As of 2003, the population stood at 50,000.

The famous Gonggar Dzong is in ruin and can be viewed near the Sundruling Monastery, on the road to Chusul. The fortress is at an elevation of 13,372 feet, near the Tsangpo and Kyichu rivers. The Gonggar Choede Monastery was built in 1464 and is located just off of Lhasa Road. The monastery walls were painted during the 16th century by Wangchuk, one of the most well-known artists of the time. While the monastery used to house 160 monks, it now houses about 30. The building is still in good condition and the exterior was recently restored. The monastery is the site of many festivals held throughout the year, particularly on days with a full moon.

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Gonggar Weather:

Gonggar county is a monsoon climate, entailing mostly wet weather and very few dry seasons. The average temperature can be anywhere from 45-47 degrees Fahrenheit. The hottest month is 60.4 degrees while the coldest month gets to be about 28 degrees Fahrenheit. Approximately 14 inches of rain fall upon the county, at an average of 29.9 rainy days.

Gonggar Livelihood:

The county is made up of mainly forest area and grassland area. Gonggar is an agricultural economy and provides grain to many counties in the area. Farmers in Gonggar grow barley, wheat, pea, radish, potato, cabbage, and cauliflower, among other things. Many medicinal plants are also farmed in the county and include musk, cypress, ginseng, and snow lotus. Livestock typically include yak, cattle, goats, sheep, horses, donkeys, pigs, and mules. Gonggar is home to many native wildlife species such as wild yak, wild ass, Tibetan gazelle, Tibetan antelope, and Black-necked cranes.

Tourism is steadily growing in Gonggar, Tibet. The county recently held 5 trade fairs and 3 cultural fairs in order to promote and educate locals and tourists about Gonggar's products, cultural arts, and handicrafts. Among these crafts is the "Jed Show Apron," which is worn by married Tibetan women. This apron is crafted in Gonggar, particularly in the Jiedexiu (also spelt Gyaideshiu) area, and has been produced here for the last 500 to 600 years. The Jiedexiu group has a particular style of hand weaving that has been practiced for 1,500 years. This technique is often called "China's state-level intangible cultural heritage."

How to Get There:

Getting to Gonggar is made easy via the Lhasa Gonggar Airport, located 39 miles from the city of Gonggar and a 40 to 60 minute drive.


Lhasa Gonggar Airport

With an altitude of 3,600 meters, Lhasa Gonggar Airport lies beside the Yarlung Zangbo River, and there are mountains on both sides of the river. Surrounding the airport, within a radius of 30 km there are peaks with up to 5,362 meters, rising to 6,126 meters within 60 km. The airport runway is 4,000 meters long and 45 meters wide. Ranking the highest civil airport in the world, Gonggar Airport reached a passenger-receiving capacity of 700,000 in 2003.
Domestic airlines in Lhasa Gonggar Airport can reach Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Chongqing, Xian, Xining, Kunming, Diqing and Chamdo Region. One international airline connects Katmandu and Lhasa.

Close by Buddhist Attractions:

The-Potala-Palace.jpg The Potala Palace
The world famous Potala Palace is located on "Moburi (Red) Mountain", to the west of old Lhasa. It is a huge treasure house for materials and articles of Tibetan history.

Jokhang Temple
Included on UNESCO's World Heritage list in 2000 as part of the Potala Palace , the Jokhang Temple (Jowo Lhakang) is located in central Lhasa, Tibet approximately 45km from Lhasa Gonggar Airport.

Drepung-Monastery.jpg Drepung Monastery
Situated at the foot of the Mountain Gambo Utse, 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) from the western suburb of Lhasa, the Drepung Monastery is known as the most important monastery of Gelugpa in Tibetan Buddhism.
Sera-Monastery.jpg Sera Monastery
Sera Monastery The Sera Monastery at the foot of Tatipu Hill is located in the northern suburb of Lhasa City. It is one of three famous monasteries in Lhasa along with the Drepung Monastery and the Ganden Monastery.
Ganden-Monastery.jpg Ganden Monastery
Gandan perches on the top of Mountain Wanrigu, 60 kms east of Lhasa, at an altitude of 3800m. It was founded in 1409 by Tsong Khasa.
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