Gyantse Kumbum Chorten was commissioned by a Gyantse prince in 1427, the Gyantse Kumbum is the town’s main attraction. The 35 meters high chorten, with its white layers trimmed with decorative stripes and its crown-like golden dome, is awe-inspiring.
The interior is equally impressive. Kumbum means 100,000 images in Tibetan. Indeed, there is what seems to be an endless series of tiny chapels. Each chapel is decorated with wall paintings, some have various statues of Buddhas, Bodhisattvas and deities. Most paintings date to the time of the construction of the stupa.
There are nine levels, 108 cells and 75 chapels. At the higher levels you can go out to an outdoor terrace and enjoy an incredible view on the town, monastery and surrounding fort.
You can take photos inside the chapels for a small fee (as of 2020 – CNY 10).
Depending on a time of the day, some chapels will be lit by the sun. In other chapels you might need a tripod. Many images have a glass protecting them, great for preservation but not for photographers. Bring a polarizing filter to remove the glare.
TOURS VISITING KUMBUM STUPA
A beautiful and exciting journey, starting in Lhasa, the capital of Tibet and going to the Everest Base Camp. The tour visits Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Sera, Drepung and Tashilhunpo monasteries, Kumbum Stupa, Yamdrok Lake and Karola glaciers.
Both group and private tours are available
This private tour starts in Lhasa, where we spend the first three days acclimatizing. While in Lhasa, we visit UNESCO World Heritage sites: Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple, and two main monasteries in Lhasa: Sera and Drepung. After that, we will drive on the scenic road visiting Yamdrok Lake, Karola glaciers, Kumbum Stupa and Gyantse monastery, before reaching Shigatse in the evening.
On the next day we visit Tashi Lhunpo monastery before returning back to Lhasa.