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5 authentic Tibetan cuisine restaurants in Lhasa

Shambhala Palace in Lhasa Photo:

Over the past 1,000 years, Tibet has developed an unique culture inseparably linked to its geography and Tibetan Buddhism. Staying in a Tibetan style hotel is one of the best ways to explore local culture. We name top five Tibetan hotels in Lhasa.

1. House of Shambhala

Nestling in a maze of alleyways east of Barkhor Street, House of Shambhala is run by a Tibetan. The meticulously restored three-story courtyard residence is historically connected to the 13th Dalai Lama. All restoration has been completed by Tibetans using only local materials and traditional building techniques. The hotel is adorned with Tibetan antiques, including a unique collection of painted panels from western Tibet. The rooms are bathed in warm colors and furnished with authentic Tibetan furniture. Its rooftop restaurant offers a 360-degree view of Lhasa, including spectacular views of the grand Potala Palace and the golden roof of Jokang Temple.

2. Shambhala Palace

Located in a secluded lane of Lhasa’s old city, Shambhala Palace was the ancient home of a high-ranking Tibetan lama. Its restoration was undertaken by a team of Tibetan artisans and is arguably the most exquisite heritage preservation undertaken by Shambhala. Each room offers comfort amidst the splendor of ancient Tibet. Turquoise, amber and other precious stones adorn the bathroom walls. Its largest four rooms offer fabulous views of Potala Palace. Four equally large rooms overlook the courtyard. Another six overlook the quiet streets outside. And the rest three are smaller but very quiet. Its rooftop restaurant also offers stunning views of Jokang, Potala and Himalayan Ranges.

3. Thangka Hotel

Thangka Hotel is situated beside Jokhang Temple, the central pilgrimage area of Lhasa. It is just 600 meters from Jokhang and Barkhor Street, 800 meters from Potala Palace. Near the sacred temple and overwhelmed by the religious atmosphere, the 4-star hotel is deemed as an auspicious place and well reflects the rich connotations of Tibetan culture. It boasts 98 Tibetan-style guest rooms, including 69 standard rooms, 26 single rooms, and 3 suites. Each room is equipped with IDD, satellite television, internet access, safety box, etc. Some rooms at the top floor offer views of Potala Palace and Lhasa’s old town. Its restaurant serves Tibetan, Chinese and Western dishes.

4. Kyichu Hotel

Kyichu Hotel is named after Kyichu River, a tributary of Yarlung Tsangpo. Its 52 rooms are simple but pleasant, with Tibetan decor and private bathrooms. It is conveniently situated between Jokhang Temple and Potala Palace, a few minutes’ walk to both. It has a small library of English books. In addition, its restaurant with umbrella tables on a spacious green courtyard lawn serves a wide selection of Tibetan, Chinese, Indian and Nepalese dishes prepared by experienced Tibetan and Nepalese chefs.

5. Yabshi Phunkhang Heritage Hotel

Originally built around 1838 for the family of the 11th Dalai Lama, Yabshi Punkhang is located right in the center of Lhasa’s old city, within walking distance to Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street. It offers beautiful Tibetan style rooms and corridors, with great view and sunlight on the roof top. There is a small garden in the courtyard where people can relax, have a cup of coffee and chat with friends.
You should not miss these five Tibetan restaurants when you are having a tour in Lhasa.

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