Stay an extra day! Activities in and around Xiahe
Xiahe is a small mountainous town with several highlights.
You can easily spend the whole day exploring this huge monastry. It is also great to look at all the Tibetans who come to pray and pay their respects to this monastery. You can visit the temples, climb up the Golden Stupa, walk the Kora and play basketball with the monks. You can explore by yourself, or do one of the guided tours organized by the monastery. We also organize a guided tour, more info can be found here TOUR 4
Sangke and Ganjia grasslands
Going to the grasslands is an absolute must when visiting this Tibetan area. The nomadic life style is the root of Tibetan culture. We organize tours to both grasslands, more info can be found here TOUR 1 AND 2.. You can also go to Sangke grasslands by bike. The grasslands start after Sangke town, 13 km from Xiahe. Do be ware though that you have to bike on the main road, with passing vehicles.
Visit the Milarepa Temple in Hezuo
Half day tour to the stunning Milarepa Temple in the district capital Hezuo. More info can be found here. TOUR 3
Hiking, Biking and Horse Riding
Bikes are for rent in Xiahe town, but they are in bad condition. Since the area is so mountainous, there are not really any bike trails. It is possible to ride the bike to Sangke grasslands (13 km one way) or even to Ganjia grasslands (35 km one way), but you have to cross a very high pass. Do be ware though that you have to bike on the main road, with passing vehicles.
There are some nice valleys for hiking around Xiahe town and also walking the Big Kora, the pilgrims' route, is wonderful excercise and gives great vistas. The Small Kora is a 3 km prayer wheel trail around the Labrang monastery. It will give you a good idea of the local peoples' spiritual life.
You can do some short horse riding on the Sangke grasslands, just 500 meters past Sangke town. It is quite touristy. You could also visit our Nirvana resort and have a wonderful opportunity for horse riding in the mountains around the resort. Not touristy at all.
Tarzong Lake is a holy TIbetan Lake 45 km outside of Xiahe. It is a great place for a relaxed picnick and you can do a short hike around the lake. You can go by public bus and then do a 1,5 to 2 hour hike to the top of the mountain where the lake is situated. Or you can ask us to arrange a taxi for you to take you all the way to the top and you can leisurely spend your time at the lake. The way to the top of the mountain is really beautiful!
Yoga mats for rent
We have yoga mats for rent at our Nirvana Hotel. We would love to have regular yoga sessions with our guests, but as of now we have not yet found a yoga teacher. However, you can use one of our mats if you would like to do your asanas in your room.
Xiahe has several nunneries, one is in the town itself. It is very small, but interesting to visit because it has the same Buddhist statues as the main Labrang monastery, but the feeling of the place is quite feminine.
Red Sect Temple
Tibetan Buddhism has 4 different sects, one of them being the Red Sect. There is a small red sect temple near the Big Kora and this temple is so interersting to visit because the statues are completely different from the statues we can see in the Labrang monastry, which belongs to the Yellow Sect.
We can arrange a relaxing lunch or diner in a our wonderful Sky Bar restaurant in our Nirvana Resort on the grasslands for you. Enjoy the stunning vistas while having your lunch. We can arrange the transfer to and from the restaurant. This is also a great idea for groups so you can do some group bonding :-)
Bring a book, your camera, your good mood and chill !!!