Qamdo, China

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Qamdo, China

Region: Qamdo is located in the Tibet Autonomous Region

Geographic Coordinates: 31.137500, 97.177700
Temperature Range: -20.0°C to 25.0°C (-4°F to 77°F)
Climate: Cold and dry winters, warm and rainy summers in Qamdo, China.
Population: 760966
Language: Tibetan

Qamdo, Also known as Chamdo, Is a city located in the eastern part of the Tibet Autonomous Region of China. It is situated at an altitude of 3, 200 meters above sea level and covers an area of about 108, 000 square kilometers. The city is surrounded by mountains on three sides and has a unique natural landscape that attracts tourists from all over the world. Qamdo has a rich history and culture that dates back to the Tang Dynasty (618-907 AD). It was an important center for trade between Tibet and China during ancient times.

The city was also an important military stronghold during the Chinese Civil War in the mid-20th century. One of Qamdo’s most famous attractions is the Riwoche Monastery. Built in 1276 AD, It is one of Tibet’s oldest monasteries and houses many precious relics such as statues made from gold and silver. Another popular tourist destination is Baxoi County which boasts stunning natural landscapes including snow-capped mountains, Deep valleys, Forests, Rivers and lakes. The city’s economy mainly relies on agriculture with barley being its primary crop along with wheat, Potatoes and beans grown at lower altitudes.

Animal husbandry plays a significant role in Qamdo’s economy with yaks being raised for their meat, Milk products such as butter tea and cheese as well as wool used for clothing. The local cuisine in Qamdo reflects its unique culture blending Tibetan cuisine with Chinese influences creating dishes like yak meat dumplings or spicy hotpot made from fresh vegetables mixed with yak meat or tofu.

Getting to Qamdo can be challenging due to its remote location but there are several options available including flights from Chengdu or Lhasa airports or taking a long bus ride through winding mountain roads providing breathtaking views along the way. Overall, Qamdo offers visitors a rare chance to experience traditional Tibetan culture while enjoying stunning natural landscapes that are unique to the region. With its rich history, Unique cuisine and welcoming locals, Qamdo is a must-visit destination for those looking to explore the beauty of Tibet.

Important Landmarks

  1. Ranwu Lake
  2. Lulang Forest
  3. Chambaling Monastery
  4. Baxoi Stone Forest
  5. Rawok Lake
  6. Qamdo Bamda Airport
  7. Pasho Ancient Town
  8. Riwoche Monastery
  9. Jampaling Monastery
  10. Tengchen County Hot Springs

Primary Industries

  1. Agriculture: Qamdo is renowned for its high-quality barley production used to make traditional Tibetan tsampa flour. Other crops grown in the region include wheat, beans, and potatoes.
  2. Animal husbandry: Livestock breeding is a significant industry in Qamdo with yaks being the most commonly raised animal for their meat, milk, wool, and hides.
  3. Tourism: Qamdo has many tourist attractions such as the Yarlung Zangbo Grand Canyon scenic area and the Riwoche Monastery.
  4. Mining: The region boasts significant mineral resources such as copper and lead-zinc ore deposits along with iron ore deposits among others.
  5. Forestry: With large forest reserves covering over 60% of its total land area,Qamdo also produces timber products such as furniture woodwork materials etc.
  6. Transportation & logistics: Several transportation companies operate within Qamdo providing services like trucking , air cargo etc to support local businesses.

Noteable History

  1. Battle of Chamdo: In 1950, Chinese troops invaded Tibet and captured Qamdo after a battle with Tibetan forces. This marked the beginning of Chinese control over Tibet.
  2. Ngabo Ngawang Jigme: He was a prominent Tibetan politician who served as the governor of Qamdo before and after its capture by Chinese forces. He later became a high-ranking official in the Chinese government.
  3. Panchen Lama: The 10th Panchen Lama, Choekyi Gyaltsen, was born in Qamdo in 1938. He became an important religious leader in Tibet but was later imprisoned by the Chinese government for his opposition to their policies.
  4. Kangding Raythang Airport: This airport is located near Qamdo and played an important role during World War II as a base for American aircraft flying over The Hump to supply China against Japan.
  5. Derge Parkhang: It is one of the largest printing houses for Tibetan texts and manuscripts located near Qamdo that has been operating since 1729.
  6. Khampa Rebellion: In 1956-57, there was an uprising against Chinese rule led by Khampa fighters from eastern Tibet including Qamdo region which resulted in heavy casualties on both sides.
  7. Yutuo Monastery: It’s one of the oldest monasteries near Qamdo that dates back to around 800 AD contains many ancient Buddhist artifacts including murals, statues, scriptures, etc.
  8. Tibetan Medicine Hospital: It’s one famous hospitals located at Chamdoo which offers traditional Tibetan medicine treatments.
  9. Baima Snow Mountain: It’s a famous tourist attraction located near Qamdo, which is known for its stunning natural beauty and cultural significance.

Museums and Things To See

  1. Qamdo Museum
  2. Yarlung Zangbo Grand Canyon Scenic Area
  3. Riwoqe Monastery
  4. Jampaling Monastery
  5. Lulang Forest Park
  6. Baxoi Ancient Town
  7. Bangda Grassland
  8. Galden Jampaling Monastery
  9. Tengchen County
  10. Xiangcheng County

Sports Teams

  1. Qamdo is a prefecture-level city located in the eastern part of Tibet Autonomous Region in China.
  2. It has a population of around 400,000 people and is known for its natural beauty and cultural heritage.
  3. Tibet Autonomous Region has its own football team called Tibet Lhasa FC which plays in the Chinese League Two.
  4. The team was founded in 2004 and represents Tibetan culture and identity through sports.
  5. Traditional sports and games that are popular among Tibetan people include:
    • Archery
    • Horse racing
    • Wrestling
    • Tug-of-war
  6. These activities are often organized during festivals or special occasions to celebrate local traditions and promote community spirit.

Cultural Events

  1. Qamdo Horse Racing Festival: This festival is held annually in July or August and showcases the region’s equestrian culture. It features horse racing, archery competitions, and traditional Tibetan dancing.
  2. Lhasa Shoton Festival: Celebrated in August, this festival highlights Tibetan culture through music, dance, food, and religious ceremonies.
  3. Nyethang Drolma Fair: Held in October or November, this festival celebrates the goddess of mercy with traditional dances, music performances, and prayer ceremonies.
  4. Chamdo Folk Song Festival: Held annually in September or October, this festival highlights the region’s folk music traditions with performances by local musicians.
  5. Chamdo International Mountaineering Festival: This event brings together mountaineers from around the world to climb some of the highest peaks in Tibet.
  6. Chamdo Peach Blossom Festival: Held annually in March or April during peak bloom season for peach blossoms; it features cultural activities such as dance performances and flower exhibitions.
  7. Qamdo International Marathon: A marathon race held every year that attracts runners from all over China to compete on a scenic route through Qamdo’s mountains and valleys.


Traditional Tibetan Dishes:

  1. Yak meat dishes: Yak meat is a staple in the region and is often served in stews, soups, or stir-fries.
  2. Tibetan-style momos: These are steamed or fried dumplings filled with minced meat or vegetables.
  3. Thukpa: A hearty noodle soup made with vegetables and meat.
  4. Chang: A fermented barley beer that is a popular drink in the region.
  5. Butter tea: A traditional Tibetan tea made with butter and salt.

Popular Restaurants in Qamdo:

  1. Lhasa Kitchen: This restaurant serves traditional Tibetan food such as yak meat dishes and momos.
  2. Dawa Restaurant: Known for its thukpa and other noodle dishes, this restaurant also offers vegetarian options.
  3. Baozi Gongzi Restaurant: This restaurant serves Chinese-style baozi (steamed buns) filled with pork, beef, or vegetables.
  4. Kangba Kitchen: Specializing in Sichuan cuisine, this restaurant offers spicy dishes such as hotpot and mapo tofu.
  5. Jiahe Restaurant: This upscale restaurant serves a variety of Chinese dishes including seafood specialties like lobster and crab.

Parks and Recreation

  1. Qamdo People’s Park is a serene and picturesque location situated in the heart of Qamdo. This park offers visitors a chance to take in the natural beauty of its lake, gardens, walking paths, and playgrounds.
  2. The Ranwu Lake Scenic Area is a must-visit destination for nature lovers. Located 200 kilometers from Qamdo, this scenic area boasts stunning views of turquoise blue waters surrounded by snow-capped mountains.
  3. Baxoi National Forest Park is an ideal destination for outdoor enthusiasts who enjoy hiking, camping, bird watching, and other activities amidst nature’s beauty. It is located in Baxoi County.
  4. Basum Tso Lake is known for its crystal-clear waters and picturesque surroundings that are sure to leave visitors spellbound with its beauty. It’s located approximately 300 kilometers from Qamdo.
  5. Lulang Forest Scenic Area near Nyingchi Prefecture offers lush forests filled with rhododendrons and wildflowers that are perfect for exploring nature’s bounty.
  6. The Yarlung Zangbo Grand Canyon Scenic Area features breathtaking views of one of the world’s deepest canyons situated about 400 kilometers from Qamdo.
  7. Galden Jampaling Monastery dates back to the 15th century and offers panoramic views of eastern Tibet countryside while allowing visitors to explore many temples and courtyards within its premises.
  8. Zogong Nature Reserve near Chamdo County protects rare species such as red pandas, snow leopards, black-necked cranes & Tibetan antelopes providing an excellent opportunity for wildlife enthusiasts.
  9. Nyimajangra Glacier Park has glaciers dating back millions of years old along with various trekking routes popular among tourists making it a national level park worth visiting.
  10. Tibetan Antelope Nature Reserve situated in the Qamdo region provides visitors with a chance to observe the graceful Tibetan antelope in their natural habitat.


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