Saturday, June 21, 2008

Olympic Torch in Lhasa Tibet

Today the Beijing Olympic Torch Relay is in Lhasa, the capital of the autonomous province of Tibet (Xizang in Chinese).

Lhasa Tibet

The torch relay will pass under tight security from Norbulingka, the previous summer palace of the Dalai Lamas to the Potala Palace, the main palace of Tibet's Buddhist rulers and first built in the 7th century.

Lhasa lies at an altitude of 3650m and is now accessible by direct train from China's capital Beijing. June is one of the most pleasant times to visit Lhasa with daytime temperatures around 20-25 degrees Centigrade, though this is the time of the rains in Tibet.

Lhasa Tibet

When visiting Lhasa remember to rest on your first few days as you slowly acclimatize to the altitude and also drink losts of water. A rabies immunization may also be wise as Tibetan dogs (like those in Nepal) are aggressive. Another health hazard is giardia (giardiasis), an intestinal parasite picked up from infected drinks or food. The cure is a weeks course of Flagyl, which can be purchased in both China and Nepal. Bring along a supply before you arrive. Having had the parasite twice (once in India and once in Nepal), I can vouch for the wisdom of bringing along enough Flagyl to get you over any attack.

Lhasa Tibet

Images © Daniel Allen

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