Nagqu Horse Racing Festival
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Nagqu Horse Racing Festival

Update: Feb. 22nd, 2012

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival is named "Qiong Da" in Tibetan Language. It is a grand traditional festival in Northern Tibet. It is hold in August 1st, lasting five or fifteen days.

Ancient and popular Nagqu Horse Racing Festival is an irreplaceable item in Tibetan tour, especially for visitors who come to Tibet in summer.

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival – Traditional Features

No matter looking it from which aspect, Nagqu Horse Racing Festival is the most lively and beautiful festival in Nagqu. It is no doubt that horse racing festival is a season for love. People of Han nationality regard it as "Romantic". So, it is very common that people in pasture area regard horse racing festival more important than New Year's Day in Tibetan calendar. Before horse racing festival, herdsman in hundreds kilometers away will come to Nagqu with tent, beautiful national clothes and every kind of shinning jewels. Just in a night, many tents are put up around the horse racing meeting place, until it become a magnificent "city". Products change, art performance, every kind of folk sports (like tug-of-war, long jumping, hanging stones) and a serious of religious activities make this "city" become a real temporary city.

Before the official competition, piety riders will walk around the giant platform where used to burn incense to show their respect and receive the blessing from high standing Lama. This can be regarded as the first show of mettlesome and handsome riders and their beautifully decorated horses. The sound of whoop and cheers from the two sides of the racecourse will mix with the sound of quickly run horses and lasts for a long time. This is the most passionate communication of the bold and vigorous herdsman with sky and earth.

The length of horse racing is different; the longest one is about ten kilometers. Base on the age of riders, it can be divided into child, adult and other kinds. Base on the competition content, it can be divided into shooting on the horse back, target practice, tournament, short track spurt, picking up Hada from horse back, presenting barley wine and so on; it also includes walking horse competition sometimes. The various, interesting activities in the horse racing festival will make people lose themselves in it. Horse racing in Nagqu and the whole Tibet will not make strict rules, the styles are flexible, and with strong performance characteristic. But the mane of the horse which wins the competition will be widely spread, even famous than its owner. Some beautiful horses which named "Star in the World", "Black Lighten" and "Eagle in Pasture" were recorded in stories and legends for their wonderful performance in competitions.

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival – Historical Culture

Ancient and famous Nagqu Horse Racing Festival is an irreplaceable item in Tibet tour. Visitors who come to Tibet should not miss this festival. The districts around Nagqu and Ando are the best place to enjoy the herdsman's life. Furthermore, the origins of Nujiang River, Yangtze River and some great rivers located in this district which can make you fully enjoy the beautiful scenery of great mountains and rivers.

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