Tibet is situated on the Tibetan Plateau which is the highest region on Earth, with an average elevation of over 4,000 meters. With that in mind, it’s probably not ideal for normal backpacking. But the beautiful scenery and culture of Buddhism attract a lot of brave hikers. And today I am one of them, my trip starts at the remarkable Yamdrok Lake and goes to Mount Everest.
Tibet, situated in western China and north of the Himalayan mountain range, is famous not just for its breathtaking mountain landscapes but also its unique culture and sights such as Yamdrok Lake, the Tashilhunpo Monastery and Mount Everest. The Tibetan Plateau is the highest region on Earth, with an average elevation of over 4,000 meters. With that in mind, it's probably not ideal for the average backpacker. But the beautiful scenery and Buddhist culture attract a lot of brave hikers. And today I'm one of them.
My name is Liam Bates, an adventurer from Switzerland. My Chinese name is Li Mu. I've been to Tibet five times already, so I'm familiar with this holy land. During my visits, I've seen a lot of incredible landscapes and heard many beautiful stories. But more importantly, I've met some lovely Chinese people.
There's an old Chinese saying, "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." Well, my own journey's a bit more fancy than that - starting at the remarkable Yamdrok Lake and going to Mount Everest.
The Yamdrok Lake, one of the three sacred lakes in Tibet, is the highest freshwater lake in the world. In the Tibetan language, its name means "swan lake". I am amazed by its beauty when I see it for the first time. The lake is surrounded by many snow-capped mountains and filled with clear water reflecting the azure blue sky and pure white clouds. The remarkable landscapes have the power to inspire an extraordinary sense of wonder.
"Our trip to Mount Everest starts now, are you ready?"
"We are ready!"
"Then let's go!"
I am accompanied by a group of Chinese travelers. Everyone in our team has different dreams. I'm getting on well with my new friends and learn more about China from them. And this particular couple is rather special, they are here on their honeymoon.
Liam: How do you feel?
Couple: Great. This is my first time in Tibet but I think it will be unforgettable.
Liam: This is your first time in Tibet?
Couple: This place is close to paradise and I think it's just how it's advertised, pure and holy.
These are ordinary Chinese people, they are working hard to make their dreams come true.
The Yamdrok Lake, the sacred water, her beauty inspires us to keep moving on. We will walk untill we see Tashilhunpo Monastery, the largest temple in Shigatse. Looking at this grand building and then entering inside gives me a feeling of connecting with an ancient and sacred religion.
Finally, we arrive at Mount Everest. The Base Camp is 5,160 meters above sea level. All of us are tired from walking for days. Our feet are refusing to move. This is the toughest part of our journey so far. But on arrival, everyone is excited. We take some shots and yell out at the mountain.
Mount Everest, I am coming!
To my surprise, there are many ordinary Chinese travelers so high above sea level. I used to think only expert hikers could do that.
Ascending Mount Everest represents a new beginning. At the end of my journey, I believe everyone will grow more than they expected. For me, I have learned more about China. I like the people, I love traveling in this country and look forward to a new beginning of my travels in this wonderful land.