There are many unique architectural wonders in Tibet and Tibetan architecture is also influenced by its geography and climate, its culture, Tibetan Buddhism, and Indian, Mongol Nepalese, and Tang architectural style. Tibetan architecture is often traced back to 1300 years when the first Buddhist temples were built in central Tibet.
The Potala Palace is in Lhasa, Tibet Autonomous Region, China. It was first built in 637 by Tibetan King Songtsen Gampo, and later the 5th Dalai Lama started constructing the modern Potala Palace in 1645. It was the winter palace of Dalai Lamas and the seat of the Tibetan government till 1959, and now it has been a museum. It has been a World Heritage Site since 1994.
The Potala Palace is built at an altitude of 12,100 ft on the side of Red Mountain in the center of Lhasa Valley. The palace measures 1300 ft east-west and 1150 ft south-north, with an average sloping stone wall of 9.8 ft thick and 16ft wide at the base. The foundations of walls are poured with copper to make them earthquake resistant. The upper parts of the wall consist of straight rows of many windows and flat roofs at various levels. There are a series of straightforward staircases leading to the rock’s summit.
The group buildings rise at the central part of the Palace are in vast quadrangular mass above a great height. This central part of Potala is called the red Palace from its reddish color and distinguishes it from the rest.
It has thirteen floors, containing over 1000 rooms, around 200,000 statues, 10,000 shrines, and many more murals and Buddhist scripture texts. In addition, there have been schools, libraries, prisons, and offices. In addition, there is jeweled work, carving, and other ornamentation in these much rich decorative paintings.
Yumbhu Lhakang Palace
In the Lhoka Prefecture (Tsedang) of Tibet Autonomous Region, China. Yumbhu Lhakang Palace was built in the sixth century for the first Tibetan king Nyatri Tsenpo. The castle is divided into front and rear areas. The front room has three floors, while a tall castle tower dominates the rear. The Palace consists of some sacred shrines and murals. The statues of Buddha and King Nyatri Tsepo are the main enshrine of the Palace.
The great Kumbum Stupa
The Kumbum Stupa is in Gyanste county, Tibet autonomous Prefecture, China, is a multi-storied Buddhist chapel. The Kumbum Stupa was founded in 1427 by the Gyantse prince and had nine levels or floors with a golden dome on the top and contains 77 small chapels along the walls of the stupa.
The great stupa is designed as a three-dimensional mandala to portray the Buddhist cosmos. Mandalas are meant to help an individual on the path to enlightenment. It holds a vast number of paintings of deities throughout the structure.