Day trip to Drak yerpa
Morning drive to Drak Yerpa meditation cave. There are several small temples shrines and hermitages and the cliffs contain some of the earliest known meditation sites in Tibet, some dating back to pre-Buddhist times. Among the more famous are those traditionally connected with Songtsen Gampo (604–650 CE), (traditionally the 33rd king of the Yarlung Dynasty and first emperor of a united Tibet). His Tibetan queen, Monza Triucham, founded the Dra Yerpa temple here.
He and his two foreign-born queens are said to have meditated in the ‘Peu Marsergyi Temple’ and the ‘Chogyel Puk’ and to have discovered ‘self-originated’ symbols of the Buddha-body, speech, and mind. Padmasambhava, or Guru Rinpoche (late 8th to early 9th century), meditated and practiced tantric yoga with his yogini Yeshe Tsogyal here, and to have spent 7 months in meditation in the ‘Dawa Puk’, which is considered to be one of his three most important places of attainment.
After this, Yerpa became one of the three most important centers of meditation and retreat in Central Tibet. Several of Guru Rinpoche’s disciples are also said to have meditated here. Atisha (982 – 1054 CE) preached extensively in the valley. Atisha’s hermitage is in ruins but had 300 monks in the 19th century and was the summer quarters for the Ramoche Monastery (the Upper Tantric College).
Later histories record that both Songtsen Gampo and Trisong Detsen (756–797) founded temples at Yerpa, and Klu-mes Tshul-khrims did some refurbishing in the 11th century.
Tradition says that after Songtsen Gampo’s only son, Gungri Gungsten, was born to Mangza Tricham, Princess of Mang, one of his wives: “A shrine and a stupa dedicated to the tutelary deity of mother and son were built upon the lap of a rocky mountain that resembled a seated image of the Holy Tara in the region of Yerpa.
Morning drive to Gaden monastery on the way you can explore some of Tibetan farmer area and also a small town called Takste town. Once you arrive at Gaden we recommended you to do Gaden monastery Khora. Gaden monastery was the original monastery of the Geluk order, founded by Je Tsongkhapa in 1409, and traditionally considered to be the seat of Geluk administrative and political power. The Ganden Tripa or ‘throne-holder of Ganden’ is the head of the Gelukpa school. Tsongkhapa’s preserved body was entombed there in the silver and gold-encrusted tomb by his disciples in 1419. Being the farthest from Lhasa of the three university monasteries, Ganden Monastery consisted of two principal original colleges, Jangtse and Shartse, meaning North Peak and East Peak respectively. The three main sights in the Ganden Monastery are the Serdung, which contains the tomb of Tsongkhapa, the Tsokchen Assembly Hall, and the Ngam Cho Khang the chapel where Tsongkhapa traditionally taught. The monastery houses artifacts that belonged to Tsongkhapa. After the finished visit, the Gaden monastery then drives back to Lhasa with the same route.
Today, driven 250km to Namtso Lake, which is known as “Heavenly Lake” and one of the three sacred lakes of Tibet; the largest lake throughout Tibet and the second saltwater lake in China only after Qinghai Lake. The tour then takes you to Lake Namtso, the second-largest saltwater lake in China. Sitting at an impressive elevation of over 4,700 meters, the lake, its big skies, and landscape are extremely beautiful. From its banks, you can gaze across the deep azure waters to the surrounding snow-capped peaks far in the distance.