Today it is possible to explore Tibet and its desert landscape, dotted with shimmering high-altitude turquoise lakes, remote communities and magnificent monasteries.

Evocatively known as 'The Roof of the World', Tibet is one of the most mysterious, exotic and charming places on the planet. Surrounded by the world's highest mountains and for so long off-limits to visitors, the resulting isolation kept Tibet largely hidden from the world and shrouded in mystery and intrigue.

This vast land was built on ancient Buddhist values, which have largely survived the devastating years of Chinese occupation (and the exile of the Dalai Lama to India), thanks largely to the fierce resistance of the people here to outside influences and the march of modernization. Despite the hardship, Tibetans are some of the most welcoming and friendliest people you could ever wish to meet.

Today, it is possible to explore Tibet and its desert landscape, dotted with shimmering high-altitude turquoise lakes, herds of yaks, remote communities and magnificent monasteries and laced throughout with tales of its turbulent history. Some of the highlights are clustered around the sacred capital Lhasa; the dramatic Potala Palace, the enduring symbol of Tibet; Jokhang temple, the holiest of Tibetan religious sites and Sera Monastery, with its famous debating monks.

Further afield are the spectacular holy lake of Yomdrok, the dazzling Tashilumpo Monastery in Shigatse and the Tombs of the Tibetan Kings in the Yarlung Valley. A detour off of the Friend's Highway to Nepal takes you to the north Everest Base Camp, with breathtaking views of the world's highest mountain. See below for further information on each.

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