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Drepung Monastery

Overview

Drepung Monastery, built in 1416, was founded by Tsongkapa's disciple Jamyang Choeje. It was the home of the Dalai Lamas before the Potala Palace was built in the 17th century 

The monastery is located on the Gambo Utse mountain, 5km from the western suburb of Lhasa. It was once Tibet's largest and most important monastery and used to have more than 10,000 monks, and currently accommodates 700 monks. It has been attracting pilgrims and visitors from around the world.



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The pilgrims should runs through these sites including Tsokchen, Ngakpa Tratsang, Jamyang Drubpuk, Loseling Tratsang and Tashi Gomang Tratsang. The path of pilgrimage extends southeast down to the Nechung Monastery.


Drepung Monastery is especially known as the site of the annual Shoton Festival from June 30th to July 6th of Tibetan calendar in Lhasa. On the first day, the ceremony is held at the foot of the Gebeiwoze Mountain in Drepung Monastery. The large Thangka is unfolded and exhibited on the mountainside of Gambo Utse Mountain. This is beginning ceremony of Shoton Festival.