Namco Lake – Highest Salt Lake in the World

After a night of drip, I was feeling alot better & decided to risk the recurrence of my diarrhea on a whole day road trip. I will have to endure roadside ‘Singing Sessions’ till we return back to the hotel. To be on the safe side, I popped the chinese doctor’s pills together with my own charcoal pills and reminded myself to stick to plain porridge diligently.

That's me looking relieved after one of our 'singing session' aka roadside open air peeing session. Of course, one can choose to conduct bowels movement as well...just have to find a remote spot and use an umbrella

The highlight of the day was Lake Namco (Also known as Lake Namtso). It is located 260km south of Lhasa City. To reach the lake, we will be driving through the Qiangtang Plain which overlooks the majestic Nyaiqen Tanglha mountain range. Many wild open grass patchs on the Qiangtang Plain are homes to the local nomadic herders.

Nomadic Tibetans seen along the way tending to their Yak herds.

?? (Zang'Ao), which literally means Tibetan Mastiff are extremely ferocious dogs which grows up to the size of an asian adult

Beautiful scene of sheeps grazing on a slightly inclined grass plain

Here's how it looks once the Tibetan Mastiff kick into action!

An adorable baby sheep which the family seems to treat as a pet.

Cute kid with very pinchable cheeks!

Namco means ‘Heaven’ in Tibetan, lies at a height of 4,718 meters above sea level and has a surface area of 1,870 square kilometres.  It reigns as the highest salt lake in the world and also the largest salt lake in the Tibet Autonomous Region. Defrosted snow from the mountain range supply the turquoise blue body of the lake.  The weather at Namco can change abruptly and snowstorms are very common across the Nyaiqen Tanglha mountain range.

Travelling over 8hrs to visit a lake created quite an expectation for the whole group. As the altitude increase gradually, I begin to feel more and more uncomfortable. This lake better be worth it…

Finally, we managed to catch a glimpse of the lake from a distance away!

But I was disappointed…

A disappointing sight greeted us when we alight from the tour bus... an outdoor bazaar? Where is the lake?

What greeted us was a line of bazaar with no lake in sight! We were then told that we have to walk a distance to reach the edge of the lake to witness its true beauty.

Well, having made it all the way there, I am definitely not staying in the bus. The supposingly ‘short walk’ to the lake was quite an ordeal. Due to the altitude and my weaken state, I was practically grasping for air with every step. I felt that I might just pass out and kick the bucket any moment.

Making the best of the situation with a 'Hey, I was here' photo 🙂

Holy site nearby dedicated to the prayer flags

Horses and Yaks were made available by the locals for tourists who prefer a comfortable ride to the edge of the lake. The price is pretty affordable at around S$1- 2  (dependent on your negotiation skills) for quite a distance and back.

Tibetian horse are smaller in size compared to their Chinese and European cousins which makes them more nimble and adapted to the high altitude

Yakety Yak

Grabbing the bull by the horns!

I was in a pretty bad shape after wandering around for around 20 mins and decided to give the yak ride a miss. Had a short nap on the bus while waiting for the rest to come back.

From the feedbacks, I guess I did not miss much. The lake was sadly overrated but the wonderful sceneries on the road to and fro did make up for it.

Beautiful snow capped mountain range in a distance

Caught the train zooming past on 'The World‘s Highest Railway: Qinghai-Tibet Railway'

Stream delivering thawed water from the mountain range

On the way back to Lhasa, we visited the world-famous Yagpachen Geothermal Zone and was introduced to a natural hot spring bath resort. Nothing fantastic about the resort that was worth mentioning, it looks just like a normal swimming pool with hot water to me.

You may also like to check out my posts on other exciting travel destinations here

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