Why do we travel to Tibet?

By Vicky Lee Source:Global Times Published: 2017/8/9 15:58:40

I don't know when it started, but travelling to Tibet has been regarded as a "sacred" journey. Many people claim that their souls have been clarified after visiting Tibet.

I recently visited Tibet, yet I feel my soul is still the same as it was before I went. The journey wasn't as sacred or clarifying as people said. Actually, it was full of hardship. Therefore, I would like to give those who believe visiting Tibet is a relaxed, fun and peaceful thing a little heads up.

Amazing scenery in Tibet comes with a price.

Firstly, be prepared for a hostile environment. The clear skies and the scared lakes hidden within the mountains all mean low oxygen, which is hard for most flatland inhabiters to adapt to.

Tibet's average altitude is 4,000 meters and many sites like Mount Qomolangma Base Camp are above 5,000 meters. Even the smallest amount of physical exertion can cause your heart to be overwhelmed.

Most people suffer from altitude stress, which causes dizziness, headache, nausea, loss of appetite and even fainting. 

The hostile environment also means continuously changing weather. If you plan to travel to different parts of Tibet, you need to pack clothes for all four seasons.

Secondly, be prepared for primitive living conditions. Most sites are hidden in remote mountains and sometimes you have to stay in villagers' houses. For example, there might be no running water.

Thirdly, prepare for extremely long journeys from one site to another. Tibet is a really large plateau full of rolling mountains and the scenic sites are sprinkled throughout. The only possible transport is by car, and most of the time you have to stay in the car for five to eight hours just to visit one site for an hour or two.

Most people post pictures of themselves posing gracefully in front of Tibet's great natural scenery, however, they don't tell you about all the difficulties.

If you are fully prepared and ready for all the challenges, you will see the unique view and culture that Tibet has to offer.

Not every visitor will have their souls cleansed, but they will definitely have their minds blown.

Tibet is worth a visit at least once in your life, but be prepared.

This article was published on the Global Times Metropolitan section Two Cents page, a space for reader submissions, including opinion, humor and satire. The ideas expressed are those of the author alone, and do not represent the position of the Global Times.


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