Rising up beside Potala Palace, the spired peak of Chakpori Hill (Yao Wang Shan) is 3725 meters (12, 221 feet) high. Ascending the winding path to the top, one has the opportunity to view a panorama of the ancient city and its surrounding landscapes.
Quite a few figures of Buddha, gods in different poses, and Buddhist scripture in Tibetan characters are engraved on the cliff. There is an extremely well preserved grotto with a history of more than a thousand years on the southeast mountainside. The grotto is 27 square meters (0.0067 acre) and in the shape of unequal rectangle. There are 69 stone statues engraved on the rock, vivid and lifelike, which represent the soul of Tibetan stone inscription art. At the north foot of the mountain is a spring. The fountain, pure and sweet, was named "Holy Water". It is said that the fountain was the favourite of the Dalai Lama half a century ago.
During the middle of 17th century, in the early Qing Dynasty, a temple was erected on the top of the mountain. Within this temple was placed a sapphire figure of a certain Tibetan Medicine King. Legend has it that the King was the avatar of Sakyamuni, who was able to treat patients no matter what the disease or how difficult the cure. During the period of the fifth Dalai Lama (1642-1682), lamas from all over the country were brought to this temple to systematically study and coordinate the knowledge of traditional Tibetan medicine. Later, the temple became the Tibetan Medicine Bureau, but over time it fell into ruin.
Chakpori Hill (Yao Wang Shan) is also the ideal location for taking photographs of Potala Palace. In the early morning of holidays or peak seasons, dense crowds of photographers and photography aficionados come here to shoot a rare view of Potala Palace irradiated by the first rays of the sun. These days Chakpori Hill (Yao Wang Shan) has become one of the hot tourist destinations in Tibet. Every year, millions of visitors from both home and abroad will pay a visit for both sightseeing and historical interests.
1. You should walk in a clockwise direction along the street.
2. It is better not stay too late in the street. Because there are many lanes there, it's easy to lose your way in the evening.
3. Different vendors may sell the same thing at different price. So you'd better ask several vendors and get more information of the articles. Of course, you should also know how to bargain with them.
4. According to the tradition of Tibet, the vendor will give a favorable price to the first customer and the last one in a day.