Nagqu, China

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Nagqu, China

Region: Nagqu Prefecture

Geographic Coordinates: 31.476600, 92.056900
Temperature Range: -30.0°C to 10.0°C (-22°F to 50°F)
Climate: Cold and dry with long winters and short summers.
Population: 504838
Language: Tibetan

Nagqu is a city in the northern part of Tibet Autonomous Region, China. It has an elevation of 4, 500 meters above sea level and covers an area of around 450, 000 square kilometers. The population is approximately 400, 000 people. Nagqu is known for its natural beauty and unique culture. One notable feature of Nagqu is its vast grasslands that are home to numerous nomadic tribes who have lived in the area for centuries. Visitors can experience traditional Tibetan life by staying with local families or participating in activities such as horseback riding or yak herding.

Lake Namtso is another attraction in Nagqu that provides a serene atmosphere for visitors to enjoy hiking or camping. The lake’s crystal-clear waters reflect the surrounding snow-capped mountains. Nagqu also has several historical sites that offer insight into Tibet’s rich cultural heritage such as Shugsep Nunnery where visitors can learn about Tibetan Buddhism and admire beautiful murals inside ancient buildings. Nagqu serves as an important transportation hub between Lhasa and other regions in Tibet due to its location. The Qinghai-Tibet Railway passes through Nagqu on its way from Xining to Lhasa, Providing breathtaking views along the way.

Despite being remote with harsh climate conditions, Nagqu has been experiencing rapid development thanks to government investment in infrastructure projects such as highways and airports which brings new opportunities for tourism as well as improved living standards for local residents. Overall, Nagqu offers a unique blend of natural beauty, Cultural heritage, And modern development that make it a fascinating destination for travelers seeking adventure off-the-beaten-path.

Important Landmarks

  1. Namtso Lake
  2. Nyenchen Tanglha Mountain Range
  3. Nagqu Grassland Nature Reserve
  4. Changtang National Nature Reserve
  5. Tangra Yumco Lake
  6. Tsonag Lake Natural Reserve
  7. Qiangtang Prairie
  8. Damxung Hot Springs
  9. Lhazê Hot Springs
  10. Rongbuk Monastery

Primary Industries

  1. Agriculture: Nagqu has fertile land suitable for growing crops like barley, wheat and potatoes along with production of yak butter.
  2. Animal Husbandry: Yak herding is the primary occupation of the people in Nagqu for their meat, milk wool and transportation purposes.
  3. Tourism: Namtso Lake (one of the highest lakes in the world), Nyenchen Tanglha Mountain Range (popular among hikers) and hot springs attract tourists from all over China.
  4. Mining: Rich mineral resources like copper, gold and lead-zinc ore deposits have attracted mining companies to set up operations there.
  5. Construction: Increasing tourism activities create job opportunities for locals involved in construction work like building hotels and restaurants.
  6. Transportation services: Due to its remote location trucking companies play a vital role in connecting Nagqu with other regions of Tibet or mainland China.

Noteable History

  1. The Battle of Nagqu occurred in 1950, resulting in the Chinese People’s Liberation Army defeating the Tibetan Army near Nagqu.
  2. Completed in 2006, the Qinghai-Tibet Railway passes through Nagqu and is considered an engineering marvel due to its high altitude and challenging terrain.
  3. Local artists have been practicing thangka painting tradition for centuries, making Nagqu well-known for this art form.
  4. Ngawang Jigme was a prominent Tibetan politician and activist born in Nagqu in 1928 who played an important role negotiating with the Chinese government on behalf of Tibetans during the 1980s.
  5. Tashi Tsering was a renowned Tibetan scholar and writer born in Nagqu in 1939 who authored several books on Tibet’s history, culture, and politics.
  6. Lhamo La-tso Lake is believed to be the home of Palden Lhamo according to Tibetan folklore; it is located at Nagchu City center which is also known as its birthplace.
  7. Every August sees thousands of visitors from across Tibet and China flocking to watch traditional horse races and cultural performances at the annual horse racing festival held here.
  8. Ngari Gunsa Airport serves as an important transportation hub for travelers visiting western Tibet including Mount Kailash (Kangrinboqe) pilgrimage site located about 500 km away from Nagchu City center.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Nagqu Museum
  2. Nyenchen Tanglha Mountain Range
  3. Namtso Lake
  4. Dangxiong Grassland Nature Reserve
  5. Changtang National Nature Reserve
  6. Shenzha County Hot Springs
  7. Nagqu Horse Racing Festival (annual event)
  8. Northern Tibet Grasslands and Wetlands National Park
  9. Tashi Dor Monastery
  10. Nagqu Wetland Park

Cultural Events

  1. Nagqu Horse Racing Festival: This is the most famous festival in Nagqu, held annually in August. It features horse racing, archery, and traditional Tibetan dancing.
  2. Nagqu Thangka Exhibition: This exhibition showcases the traditional Tibetan art of thangka painting. It is held annually in July.
  3. Nagqu Snow Mountain Festival: Held annually in November, this festival celebrates the beauty of the snow-capped mountains surrounding Nagqu through cultural performances and activities like skiing and ice skating.
  4. Saga Dawa Festival: Celebrated throughout Tibet, this festival marks Buddha’s enlightenment and is held on the full moon day of May or June.
  5. Losar (Tibetan New Year): Celebrated across Tibet including Nagqu, Losar falls between January and February depending on the lunar calendar.
  6. Shoton Festival: A major event in Lhasa that also has celebrations in other parts of Tibet including Nagqu featuring Tibetan opera performances and giant thangkas displayed at monasteries.
  7. Ganden Monastery Butter Lamp Festival: Held at Ganden Monastery near Lhasa but with celebrations across Tibet including some smaller events around Nagqu to mark Buddha’s first sermon.
  8. Tsurphu Cham Dance Festival: A major event for followers of Buddhism with a focus on tantric practices that includes masked dance performances by monks from Tsurphu Monastery located near Lhasa but with some small-scale events around other parts of Tibet too including a few places around Nagqu as well.


  • Yak Meat: Yak meat is a staple food in Nagqu and can be found in various dishes such as yak meat dumplings, yak meat soup, and stir-fried yak meat.
  • Tsampa: Tsampa is a traditional Tibetan food made from roasted barley flour mixed with butter tea. It is often served as a side dish or eaten as a snack.
  • Shambhala Restaurant: This restaurant serves authentic Tibetan cuisine such as yak butter tea, tsampa, momos (dumplings), and thukpa (noodle soup).
  • Nagqu Hotel Restaurant: This restaurant offers a mix of Chinese and Tibetan cuisines including hotpot, grilled meats, noodle dishes like fried rice with vegetables.
  • Lhasa Kitchen: This restaurant serves Chinese-style hotpot with fresh vegetables and meats like beef and lamb.
  • Kekexili Restaurant: Kekexili offers delicious Tibetan-style hotpot along with other traditional dishes like momos (dumplings) filled with vegetables or meats.
  • Himalaya Restaurant: Himalaya serves authentic Tibetan meals like thenthuk (hand-pulled noodle soup), tsampa porridge topped with dried fruits nuts & honey; also has vegetarian options available for the guests who prefer it over non-veg items.

  • Parks and Recreation

    1. Nagqu Wetland Park
    2. Qinghai Lake National Forest Park
    3. Nianqing Tanggula Mountain Scenic Area
    4. Nagqu Cultural and Sports Center
    5. Nagqu Alpine Ski Resort
    6. Nagqu Grand Canyon Scenic Area
    7. Gulu Lake Natural Reserve
    8. Namtso Lake Scenic Area


    Adventure Awaits!

Explore more:

Shengli, China

Reading Time: 4 minutes Shengli, China Region: Shandong Geographic Coordinates: 37.450000, 118.467000 Temperature Range: -40.0°C to 40.0°C (-40°F to 104°F) Climate: Seasonal. Population: 2193518 Language: Mandarin Shengli is a city located in the eastern part of China, In the Shandong province. The name Shengli

Read More »

Gladbeck, Germany

Reading Time: 8 minutes Gladbeck, Germany Region: North Rhine-Westphalia Geographic Coordinates: 51.566700, 6.966700 Temperature Range: -50.0°C to 50.0°C (-58°F to 122°F) Climate: Data not available. Population: 75687 Language: German Gladbeck is a charming city located in the western part of Germany, Specifically in the

Read More »

Thornton, Colorado

Reading Time: 6 minutes Thornton, Colorado USA Geographic Coordinates: 39.919700, -104.944000 Temperature Range: -40.0°C to 40.0°C (-40°F to 104°F) Population: 140538 Language: English Thornton is a thriving city located in the state of Colorado, United States. It is situated in Adams and Weld counties

Read More »

Kızıltepe, Turkey

Reading Time: 5 minutes Kızıltepe, Turkey Region: Mardin Geographic Coordinates: 37.193900, 40.586100 Climate: Seasonal. Population: 252656 Language: Turkish Kızıltepe is a district in southeastern Turkey’s Mardin Province, Bordering Syria. With a population of around 200, 000 people, It covers an area of 1, 372

Read More »

Oviedo, Spain

Reading Time: 6 minutes Oviedo, Spain Region: Asturias Geographic Coordinates: 43.360000, -5.845000 Temperature Range: 10.0°C to 30.0°C (50°F to 86°F) Population: 217552 Language: Spanish Oviedo is a city located in Asturias, Spain that has successfully preserved its cultural heritage while embracing modernity. The old

Read More »

Saint-Quentin, France

Reading Time: 8 minutes Saint-Quentin, France Region: Hauts-de-France Geographic Coordinates: 49.848600, 3.286400 Climate: Data not available. Population: 53856 Language: French Saint-Quentin is a charming city located in the Aisne department of northern France. Steeped in history and rich in architectural heritage, This picturesque town

Read More »