Luxury Tibet Tours

Written by Helen Glenn Court
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The age-old Shangri-La mystique might lift somewhat in the course of luxury Tibet tours, but don't count on it disappearing altogether. This ancient Buddhist stronghold was isolated by the imposing geography of the world's tallest mountains and the nature of its religious practice for centuries. After communist China annexed Tibet in 1950, this isolation was enforced more actively, with both individual and luxury Tibet tours forbidden altogether for more than 30 years. It remains remote.

Reopened to foreign tourism in 1984, closed after uprisings in 1987, and reopened in 1992, Tibet's heart and soul lie in its capital city of Lhasa. The focal point of religious pilgrimages, the city is also a wonder of architecture, religious shrines, and sheer natural beauty. There's no question that luxury Tibet tours offer you an open door to an opportunity not to be missed.

Luxury Tibet Tours: The Physical Facts

The high plateau on which Tibet is built stands about 15,000 feet above sea level. As tremendously high as this is--far higher than any in the territorial United States (Mount Hood in Oregon, for example, stands only just higher than 11,000 feet), it is still dwarfed by the surrounding Himalayan mountains. The highest of which, of course, is Mount Everest, rising along the Tibet-Nepal border and the world's highest peak at 29,035 feet.

Mount Kalais, sacred to Hindus and Buddhists, and the source of the Indus River, stands in this Himalayan range. China's famous Yangtze (Yellow) River also rises nearby. A prime water source for Central Asia, the Tibetan plateau is the source of other Southeast Asian rivers as well. The K'ung-ch'ueh flows eventually into the Ganges, the Salween makes its way south to Myanmar, and the Mekong snakes its way down to Laos and Thailand.


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