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Tibet's mountain landscape is dotted with 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.

Venture out of the capital Lhasa, en-route to Mount Everest Base Camp, and you will follow winding mountain roads to the shimmering turquoise waters of the sacred Yamdrok Lake, stopping to appreciate its beauty from above and on its shores. Dramatic mountain passes are adorned with colourful prayer flags fluttering in the wind and backed by glorious snow-capped peaks and glaciers. Herds of yaks, sheep, goats, cows and horses graze the open pastures as locals tend to their crops and gather for late-afternoon picnics by the side of the flourishing Yarlung Tsangpo River.

Shigatse is Tibet's second largest city. It sits on a high plain at the confluence of two rivers, at around 3,800 metres above sea level, creating some of the most fertile land in the region and attracting a rich mixture of ethnic groups. The star attraction here is the huge 600 year old Tashilhunpo Monastery, seat of the controversial Panchen Lama.

At the small city of Gyantse you can admire the magnificent dzong fortress architecture and climb the unique circular stupa, sticking your head into the many small chapels of its outer shell and enjoying fine views across to the fort and the old town.

Turn off the Friendship Highway that runs to Nepal and you will enter the Mount Everest National Park. The roads winds its way over and across one of the world's highest mountain passes and back down again, arriving at the Rongbuk Monastery Guest House or Everest Base Camp tents, where you will stay the night. Rise early the next day and you'll hopefully enjoy stunning views of the north face of the world's biggest and most fabled mountain.

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Hugh Clayson

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9296 Tashilhunpo Monastery

Shigatse & Tibet

Tashilhunpo Monastery

One of Tibet's most historically significant monasteries and home to magnificent stupa-tombs and Buddhist statues.

9293 Yamdrok Lake

Shigatse & Tibet

Yamdrok Lake

Hidden in the Tibetan mountains, the sacred Yamdrok Lake is a stunning sight and a deeply sacred place for Tibetans.

9295 Karola Glacier

Shigatse & Tibet

Karola Glacier

En-route to Everest we find this magnificent white glacier, framed by colourful prayer flags and high mountains.

9294 Palcho Monastery & Kumbum

Shigatse & Tibet

Palcho Monastery & Kumbum

Follow the path to enlightenment of the rare Gyantse Kumbum and enjoy fine views over the Dzong hilltop fortress.

9297 Sakya Monastery

Shigatse & Tibet

Sakya Monastery

Fortress-like Sakya is known as the "Great Wall of Tibet" and houses an important collection of cultural relics.

Everest Base Camp

Shigatse & Tibet

Everest Base Camp

Venture south off of the Friendship Highway to the base camp of the world's tallest and most fabled mountain.

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