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Zanda (རྩ་མདའ་རྫོང)

In Zanda, the peculiar “Stone forest" Zanda Tulin has an observation deck displaying one of the best views of the tourist attraction's rocky elevations. In addition, the county has a river called Langqen Zangbo, around which are the ruins of the Guge Kingdom and Tholing Monastery, with unique cave murals and a very romantic water fountain, respectively.

Things to do +

▲▲See the landscape at Zanda Tulin (札达土林)

Description: it is a special landform formed by the erosion of the water that flowed through it. It is 1100 years old, with an altitude of 3750 to 4450 meters. These are loose deposits of clay, sand and gravel washed and eroded by seasonal rain as if it were a “Stone forest”.

In Tulin, there is an observation deck at the top, where you can see all the rocky elevations in the area clearer than ever.

If the weather is good, at night you can capture a real galaxy in the sky that will appear in front of you.

You don’t have to pay for any ticket.


▲▲▲Visit Tsaparang (古格王朝遗址)

Description: the ruins of Guge Kingdom are located on the mountain beside the south bank of Langqen Zangbo River (གླང་ཆེན་གཙང་པོ象泉河). Formerly, it was established as the center of the Tibetan empire, but in the mid-17th century it was destroyed by invaders from Ladakh, leaving it in ruins.

If you want to experience the ruins to the fullest, it is recommended to hire a group guide to explain the destination (¥100 per person). In addition, the guide will take you to the caves with murals on the walls, which are normally not open to the public. If you feel that you are prepared and are daring enough, you can take advantage and enter the “Cave of Corpses (干尸洞),” where you will find bones of real humans from ancient times.

Many decide to watch the sunrise over Tsaparang, with the sun illuminating the whole place giving it a unique glow.

The ticket is ¥65.


▲▲Go to Tholing Monastery (托林寺མཐོ་ལྡིང་དགོན་པ)

Description: it is a Gelug Buddhist monastery of Tibetan Buddhism and the first Buddhist temple in Ngari prefecture. It was built in Song Dynasty and is located near Langqen Zangbo River. It is shaped like a belt, with three parts: the main hall, the monks’ residence, and Talin (塔林).

Going up through the area where the rests of Tholing are, there is a source of water (a kind of lake) from which the locals drink, with a light blue and totally crystalline appearance. If you have a drone and you fly it overhead, you will notice that it is shaped like a heart.

There’s no need to buy any tickets.

How to get +

As in the previous case, for foreign visitors, the tourist agency will prepare the trip it deems most convenient. However, normally everyone who visits Zanda usually goes by car with driver from Ngari airport, due to the difficulty of getting around in such a remote area and the unavailability of public transport to get there.

Travel tips +

To enter Tsaparang, it is mandatory to wear long pants, as it is a building where religion is practiced.


Oxygen bottles are essential, as there are areas with many stairs and it can generate energy waste and lack of air.


Protect natural areas and avoid generating trash in areas such as the local water source.

Useful contacts +

Tsaparang tourist information: 0897-262-2822.