5-day Trip in Seda, Xinduqiao and Tagong
Day 1: Chengdu—Guanyinqiao Town
In the morning: at 7: 30, tourists gather at the door of Sichuan University at the first section of South Ring Road. At 8 AM, tourists start their trip down Duwen highway. They can appreciate the landscape of Aba, western Sichuan, and go forward along Zagunao Valley, the tribute of Min River (“Zagunao” means “auspiciousness” in Tibetan). Along the upstream of Min River, tourists can visit the construction site of Zipingpu Reservoir Project, enter Aba Tibetan Qiang Prefecture after passing through boundary marker, and appreciate poetic landscape of west Sichuan, border building and watchtower, to experience Tibetan Qiang folklore.
At noon: tourists pass by Li County and Taoping Qiang village, and have lunch at Gu’er Valley.
In the afternoon: tourists pass by Miyaluo, Ma’erkang and Wengda Town while enjoying the landscape of Sequ River Valley, and arrive at Guanyinqiao Town at around 4 PM. After they check in the hotel, they should walk 30 minutes to Guanyin Temple (means Bodhisattva Temple), and climb to the middle slope of Na’Ne Mountain (means the Deity Mountain), to explore the ancient temple and know about the history of the second Potala Palace. Also they can visit Bodhisattva Chuosijia (the crown is decorated with gold, silver and coral valuing CNY 20,000, and the red and white Hada or other silk cloth is dozens of CM thick. The Bodhisattva looks graceful holding a lotus in her left hand and a string of Buddha beads in her right hand). The offering before the shrine is countless, with 231 butter lamp on day and night. The wall inside the temple are carved with Buddha missionary, printing of Bodhisattva, scriptures, pictures of Gambo and Princess Wencheng, and various pictures of golden animals and jade birds reflecting Lama.
In the evening: the tour will finish at around 6 PM. Tourists will return to have a dinner and have a sleep at the foot of the Deity Mountain.
Accommodation: Guanyinqiao Town
Day 2: Guanyinqiao Town—Wu Ming Buddhist Institute in Seda
In the morning: tourists start their trip at 7: 30, and arrive at Seda after passing by Wengda Town along 317 State Road. Along Sequ River going northward, tourists can see thousands of grass ditches with lush pasture and various wild flowers at both sides of the river. Mountainous ridges extend eastward and westward. Under the white clouds and blue sky, tourists will pass by villages one by one.
At noon: at round 1 PM tourists will enter into Larong Valley and arrive at Wu Ming Buddhist Institute. The astonishing Buddha picture will gradually present to you—many red-bricks houses over the mountains, monks in red gown to and fro, golden Buddha Institute and splendid Mandala under the blue sky and white clouds. Tourists will be arranged to take a rest at hotel and have lunch (lunch fee paid by tourists themselves).
In the afternoon: after lunch tourists go to Mandala (4000 M), communicate with believers and monks, follow them to pray, pilgrimage, and experience their practice mode. During the spinning of the prayer wheel, tourists can feel the strong faith and tranquility of their mind.
When they reach the summit, they can throw Longda into the sky and tell their wishes. While flags with scriptures fly in the wind, their wishes are told every time as the blowing wind.
Giving a bird view of the whole Larong Valley, tourists will see red houses, rolling smoke from chimneys and monks to and fro. The wind blows beside the ear, the white clouds move in the sky, but tourists merely feel quiet when they stand there.
In the evening: under the boundless starry sky, there is one monk reading scripture in each red house, and the prayer wheels are still making sound in Mandala (PS: there is no meat and cigarette, so tourists should be Romans when in Rome).
Day 3: Larong temple(Wuming Buddhism Institute) in Seda—Guanyinqiao Town
In the morning: tourists can get up early to reach the summit of the mountain to appreciate the beautiful sunrise, take photos and enjoy the sunlight moving in the valley. After breakfast, tourists can listen to teaching in Buddha Institute, read Lama Scripture, experience the profound Buddha and open their mind. Lunch is paid all by tourists themselves.
At noon: at 12 AM, tourists gather at the parking lot and go to the biggest celestial burial (4010 M) in Seda in the world, to know about the custom of celestial burial: the family of the dead send the body by a gurney, carry the body around the with tower, and put the body on the celestial burial table. Next the celestial burial master come to the table in costume, cut the body and Lama read scriptures beside the table. Vultures flying in the sky and ranking in a row on the slope, as long as the master gives an order by gesture, these vultures will fly quickly to the body. The scene is very astonishing, which make you to sigh to cherish your life more!
(PS: there is rich smell of the dead body on the celestial burial and the scene is very solemn. No photos, no noises. You need to be brave to suffer the celestial burial. The picture of it will keep in your mind all over after the ceremony finished.)
In the afternoon: at 3 PM, tourists pass by Wengda Town, Huoxi County, and arrive at Guanyinqiao along 317 State Road. After dinner (paid by tourists themselves) tourists stay in the hotel.
Day 4: Guanyinqiao—Xinduqiao
In the morning: tourists start their trip at 6 AM, appreciate the landscape of the valley during the trip, and arrive at beautiful valley, Danba.
At noon: have lunch at Danba (paid by tourists themselves)
In the afternoon: in the fresh air, tourists can enjoy the rich Tibetan Lama folklore on Tagong Grassland (“Tagong” means the place even the fairy do not want to leave. It is said that when Princess Wencheng brought with the scripture of 12-year-old Sakyamuni and passed by here, but she failed to take him away. Finally she had to build Tagong Temple there and brought another Buddha scripture from Chang’an to Lhasa). Tourists can appreciate the beautiful view of Tagong Grassland, the special grassland in Tibetan area, and also they can ride a horse (fee paid by tourists themselves). Additionally, they can visit the gold Muya Tower in honor of Master Banchan, see Yala Mountain (AKA Muya Moutain) covered with snow all year round, and go on a pilgrimage to Tagong Temple, the “Jokhang Temple” in Kang area. Then they can enjoy unique Suyou Flower planted by Princess Wencheng in Tibetan area and spin the prayer wheel with happiness and faith, to experience the firm faith and sincerity of believers far from here. Finally they can return Xinduqiao, regarded as the paradise of photography, and take beautiful photos as much as they want.
Day 5: Xinduqiao—Chengdu
In the fresh air of the morning, tourists pass by Kangding, Ganzi, which is the county of love songs. Seeing Konka Snow Mountain from long distance, tourists pass through Er’lang Mountain Tunnel (the highest altitude in China) and return Chengdu.