Drigungtil Monastery
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Drigungtil Monastery

Update: Jan. 10th, 2013

Drigungtil Monastery

Brief Introduction of Drigungtil Monastery

The Drigungtil Monastery is the central monastery of Drigung Kargyu Sect. It is located on the bank of Xuerong River in the area of Maizhokunggar County, east of Lhasa. It was built by Drigungba Renqinbai in 1179. It is located between cliff and high mountain. The whole monastery is very grand. There is a Dezhong Monastery located at the depth of mountain stream. The Dezhong Monastery is famous ashram of nuns. The Dezhong Hot Spring, with rich water and moderate temperature, can cure several kinds of diseases. It has high reputation in history. Hence, continuous stream of visitors come here to enjoy the wonderful scenery and hot spring in their Tibet tour.

There is the most famous platform for celestial burial in Drigungtil Monastery in Tibet. In the world, the two most famous platforms for celestial burial are Siwacai Celestial Burial Platform and Drigungtil Monastery Celestial Burial Platform. The Drigungtil Monastery Celestial Burial Platform is located on the mountain behind Drigungtil Monastery. According to legends, the soul of people who ever received the Abhiseka of living Buddha in Drigungtil Monastery can be freed from the body and come into paradise instead of coming into hell. Consequently, many people would like to send the dead to the Drigungtil Monastery Celestial Burial Platform without regarding the long journey.

Near the Drigungtil Monastery, there were many monasteries of Drigung Kargyu Sect. It is said that there were over 30 monasteries in the history. Presently, there are only seven monasteries. Except for the Dezhong Monastery which is located at the depth of mountain stream, there are Yargang Monastery, Zongze Monastery, Zhexue Monastery, Garze Monastery on the middle and down stream of the Xuerong River.

History of Drigungtil Monastery

Kargyu Sect was a very large sect. But the Drigungtil Monastery did not get along well with Sakya Monastery in the period of Saga Kingdom. At last, both sides appealed to arms. The battle between Drigungtil Monastery and Sakya Monastery lasted for a long time. It is said that the eminent monks in the two monasteries frequently resorted to magic arts to kill people in the other monastery except for sending warrior monks to fight with each other. Later, the battle developed into the flight of eminent monks in the two monasteries. After each monastery lost an eminent monk, the monks of Sakya Monastery came to Drigungtil Monastery to fight a decisive battle in 1290. At last, the Drigungtil Monastery was defeated in the battle. And the architecture of Drigungtil Monastery almost destroyed in the battle. Later, the Drigungtil Monastery gradually recovered. Presently, the monks in Drigungtil Monastery are over 300.

Tips of Visiting Drigungtil Monastery

Entrance Ticket and Opening Time

The entrance ticket of Drigungtil Monastery is 45 CNY per person. The opening time is from 6:00 to 16:00.


The Drigungtil Monastery is 150 kilometers away from east of Lhasa. The cost of chartered car is about 250 CNY per person. In addition, there are scheduled buses from Lhasa to Drigungtil Monastery. You can take the scheduled bus at the Jokhang Temple Square at 6 o'clock in the morning and go back to Lhasa in the afternoon. The fare to and back is 60 CNY per person.

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