Hike trip with mother to Tsetang


The three days trip started with a phone call from my elder sister. She asked me if I have time to travel to Woka Choelong Valley with my mother and I was glad that I could take my mother on a trip again.

The highlight of Today's Article 

  1. Three days tour with my mother and elder sister.
  2. Woka Choelong Monastery. 
  3. Hike to the meditation cave of Great Je Tsongkhapa.
  4.  Sangri Je Machik Lapdron monastery.
  5. Samye monastery and Chimpuk meditation caves.

We started the family tour on the morning of 2019 September 1st from Lhasa. We travel by the Linlha highway until Rutok town. From Rutok we turn towards the south into the Valley of Woka near the Woka Choelong monastery.

On the way, we visited a small Nyingma school monastery, namely Trintso. Near the monastery, there is a small lake, namely Trintso Lake.  After traveling for a few more hours, we arrived at the Zingqi monastery. The main shrine of the monastery is the statue of the future Buddha Matriaye.  From Zingqi town, it is only around 20km to the Woka Valley. We arrived at Woka Choelong monastery while listening to the details of the monastery from a frankly humble monk. I have written an article about Woka Choelong.

Photo: The Zigzag route on the way to the meditation cave of Je Tsongkhapa

This time the main highlight of the tour with my mother is the hike to the meditation caves of Great Je Tsongkhapa.  The founder of the Gelug school from Buddhism in Tibet. 

Hike to the meditation cave of Great Je Tsongkhapa

This time we planned to visit the two precious meditation caves of great Je Tsongkhapa. 

  1. The precious place where Je Tsongkhapa shares the teachings on Praise of Dependent Arising.  
  2. The precious water of Manjushri Buddha makes the sound of the mantra Na Didi. (Mantra of Manjushri Buddha)
  3. The monastery is at an altitude of 5000 meters. 
  4. Meditation cave of great Je Tsongkhapa.

From Woka Choelong monastery, we have to travel by a high pass at the elevation of nearly 5000 meters into the Valley of Nomads. After a few minutes from the pass, we parked the car and hiked to the meditation cave of great Je Tsongkhapa. The hiking duration is around one and a half hours one way at an elevation of nearly 5000 meters. 

Photo: Hiking to the meditation cave of Je Tsongkhapa

It was raining on the way, and we hike slowly towards the meditation cave. The area is covered by green nature. Locals say that some of the wild Bear's homes are situated on the way, so it is very important to have a local Guide to show the route since the meditation cave is hard to find.

My mother is seventy-one years old, and locals say she is one of the healthiest Amala that they have seen.  I told her to give me her hand, but she says: I want to walk by myself and the smile on her face shows that she is so happy to travel to this precious place. 

The precious place where Je Tsongkhapa share the teachings on Praise of Dependent Arising

Je Tsongkhapa after realization of emptiness was so happy that he wanted to praise the Buddha Shakyamuni with a Praise of Dependent Arising. He said no lord or god from the earth had taught the teachings on Dependent Arising except Buddha and he was so pleased to praise Buddha Shakyamuni Siddhartha Gautama for the gift of Dependent Arising to the world. 

Photo: Precious footprint of Je Tsongkhapa

We drank the precious water of Manjushri wisdom Buddha by listening to the noise of the water. My mother said the water is making the sound of the Manjushri Buddha's mantra.  It is her great clean perception that she has merit to hear like that. For me, it was not that easy since I don't have merit like her.

We are the first person on our team to enter the meditation cave of Great Je Tsongkhapa since only 2-3 people can enter this small meditation cave at one time. This meditation cave is one of the most beautiful meditation caves that I have seen. It looks like a human did not build it, I feel like it is offered by a local god or demon to the great Je Tsongkhapa as a gift since it is their honor to have a great Buddha-like Je Tsongkhapa meditating near them. 


After spending some time near the meditation cave. I finally smell the beautiful incense near the gate of the meditation cave. The smell made me feel happy and awake. 

Photo: Gate of Meditation Cave of Je Tsongkhapa

We took some photos, and we do have plan to visit and hike to another meditation area where the great Je Tsongkhapa meditated on Buddha Yamantaka. (Manjushri Buddha in the wrathful form) One of the most powerful Yidams. (Tantra Deities) This time because of too much hiking and also rain, we plan to leave it for next time. 

We all hiked back to the vehicle parking area. My mother was one of the healthiest again, and we all travel back to Lhasa with big smile on our faces. 

The route from the parking area, there is another route to Sangri town near Tsetang, so we took that route where we can see stunning waterfalls. After reaching Sangri town, we visited the monastery of the great female Yogi Jetsun Machik Lapdron. From there, we travel to Samye monastery and Chimpuk meditation caves by spending a night at Samye.  The next day we traveled back to Lhasa by the Tsetang Lhasa highway. 

The three days hike was one of my best trips of mine for the year 2019. Now I am planning to do a short trip with my mother to the hot springs at Tidrum nunnery. Thank you for reading my diary on a trip with my mother. For Tibet travel free information or booking a tour to Tibet. Email at info@tibettravelers.com 

Written By :Tenzin

Jan 06, 2023


    One thought on “Hike trip with mother to Tsetang”

    1. Thank you! Unfortunately, I can’t go through such little-known places of Je Tsongkhapa as a pilgrim myself, thank you for showing me these beautiful places.

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