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The Yumbu Lakang

Brief / profile

Yumbu Lakang is the first palace in the Tibetna history as well as one of the oldest buildings in Tibet.


It lies in the east of the Yalong River and 12 km southeast of Tsetang Town.

Enjoying a history of roughly 2,100 years, this palace was originally constructed for Nyatri Tsenpo-the first Tibetan King in the 2nd Century BC. Since then, it became the palace for Tibetan kings. After Songtsen Gampo came to the throne, Yumbu Lakang turned into the summer palace for him as well as his wife Princess Wencheng. Later, it was enlarged during the reign of the 5th Dalai Lama in the 7th century and became a Buddhist monastery.
However, the palace suffered from severe destruction during the Cultural Revolution in China. Most of the outer walls were ruined. Many of today’s buildings are the fruit of the renovation in 1982.

Architecture / Structure / Each scenery

The Yumbu Lakang complex is composed of 3 parts: a 3-story tower, chapels as well as monks’ quarters.
With the height of only 11 meters, the tower stands in the east of the palace.
Each floor of the tower has a small chapel. The main chapel was initially a 3-story building. However, only 2 floors were reconstructed in 1982. The first floor is devoted to the historical Tibetan Kings while the second floor is dedicated to the local Buddhist deities. Moreover, Tibetan kings and their ministers are worshipped in a small chapel. There’s a small chanting hall with Sakyamuni and Chenrezi inside.
The last part of the palace is the monks’ quarters to the south of the chapel. The first floor houses the Nyingma sect monks who were designated to maintain the architecture. And the 2nd floor next to the chapel’s 2nd floor left for the Dalai Lama.

Legend and Story

Besides, there’s also a legend about the Yumbu Lakang. It goes like this:
During the 5th century, a Buddhist sutra fell from the sky to the roof the palace. However, nobody could read it. A Sage said this book would be interpreted in the 7th or 8th century. Therefore, it was kept in Yumbu Lakang.
Many years later, the book was proved to be a
Buddhist sutra.

Admission fee.
The admission fee for this scenic spot is RMB 60.


It’s open to the public from 9:00 to 18:00 and the suggested time for a tour here is 1 hour.