Located at west of Xiahe County,Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Gannan, Gansu Province, Labrang Lamasery is one of the six main lamaseries of Gelug sect of Tibetan Buddhism of China. Gelug sect is the most renowned Tibetan Buddhism school in the world and Labrang Lamasery still keeps the most complete Tibetan Buddhism teaching system in China.
Labrang Lamasery covers an area of about 822,668 square meters, only a bit smaller than the Potala Palace. There are 2,000 prayer wheels along the 3.5-kilometer exterior wall. It needs at least one hour to walk over around all the prayer wheels. The lamasery consists of six scripture halls and several Buddha halls.
The largest scripture hall is Wensi school hall (also called great scripture hall), a hall where big meetings are held. The other five halls are Shilun school hall, school of medicine hall, Hevajra school hall, Tantra senior school hall and junior school hall. In these halls are all kinds of statues of Buddhas made from various materials, such as gold, silver, purple copper, yellow copper, pure gold, ivory, coral, agate, crystal, and jade stone and so on. The interior decoration of the halls presents to people a kind of typical Tibetan construction style.
Labrang Lamasery is also famous for containing abundant scriptures, Buddhism texts, as well as frescos. The existed over 80,000 scripts cover many fields, such as philosophy, Esoteric Buddhism, medicine, history, biography, astronomy, grammar, rhetoric and so on. It is rated as “the pearl of Buddhist cultures” of China. It attracts more and more people not only because the various architectures of Tibetan style, but also its deep religious verve.
|What to See/Do:||When visiting this lamasery, you can taste an anthentic Tibetan meal served by monks. The meal includes a cup of milky tea, hand-grabbed lamb, rice, Tibetan steamed bun and a cup of yoghurt that is as cold as ice cream and sour and sweet as waxberry.|
|Duration:||2 – 3 hours|
|Address:||1 km west of Xiahe County, Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture of Gannan, Gansu Province.|
|Opening time:||Wensi Great Hall opens from 08:00 to 18:00; other halls open from 08:00 to 16:00.|
|Public transport:||Take coach at Lanzhou South Passenger Station for four hours at 75RMB per person, and get off at Xiahe passenger station, then walk to the site.|