Saturday, December 29, 2012

Regular Travel Programming to Return Shortly

It's no longer a secret at this point that I have taken a short break from travel blogging this holiday season. The first half of December was spent traveling through the mountains of Mae Hong Son province in northern Thailand. The second half was at home doing a combination of your regular holiday merriment and good old work. Yes, even on Christmas Day! No complaints though. More work means more funds and more funds mean more travels! The good news is that regular travel programming in this travel blog will return shortly. Shortly than anyone might expect (assuming people still care or still read this travel blog). For now I leave you with a photo of one of the highlights of my travels this 2012:

Shangri-la (Zhongdian), Yunnan, China
Ganden Sumtseling Monastery in Shangri-la, Yunnan province, China

Current travel restrictions still make it difficult and very costly for independent travelers such as myself to go to Tibet, a dream destination of mine. In addition, the ongoing political situation mar the ethics involved in any tourist-related activity anywhere on the Tibetan plateau. It is for this reason that I do not see myself heading up to Tibet anytime in the foreseeable future. This year, however, I made sure that I got pretty damn close.

The Ganden Sumtseling Monastery is the largest Tibetan monastery in Yunnan province, China and most important Tibetan monastery in Southwest China. The monastery is found right outside the town of Shangri-la, situated at a breathtaking elevation of 3,380 meters above sea level. If you check the map, the area is perched on the easternmost folds of the Himalayas, just a few short hours from the Tibetan border. That's close enough for me.

How are you spending your 2012 holidays? Staying at home? Traveling? Drinking? Yes, it's drinking, right?

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