Tuesday, 27 September 2011

Rare Look Into Tibet Buddhist Grottoes

Rare Look Into Tibet Buddhist Grottoes Image
"The frescoes have a twist of Kashmir flavor. They are a valuable resource for archeologists trying to figure out when and where Buddhism was introduced to China." Shangri la is full of Buddhist caves and treasures (TibetanAltar)

CHINA EXCLUSIVE: A RARE LOOK INTO TIBET'S LARGEST BUDDHIST GROTTOES(PeoplesDaily) Hidden among sandstone hills in remote western Tibet, a stretch of honeycomb-shaped caverns is way beyond the reach of most travelers.

Known as the Donggar Piyang grottoes, the 1,000-year-old caverns in the Tibet Autonomous Region's Ngari Prefecture hold one of the world's greatest collections of Tibetan Buddhist murals.

The grottoes, divided into two clusters of 200 and 1,000 caves, respectively, hold remains of ancient monasteries, fortresses, and forests dating back as far as the 10th century.

Experts expect that the well-preserved grottoes will shed some light on the Guge Kingdom, an ancient kingdom that is estimated to have existed between the 9th and 17th centuries in what is known today as Zanda County.

The exotic frescoes of the Donggar Piyang grottoes were first discovered in 1992, when an archaeological expedition team set foot in this remote corner of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau...

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