Post office opens at foot of Tibet's Mount Kailash

People attend an opening ceremony of a post office at the foot of Mount Kailash. [Photo/China Daily]

A post office has been opened at the foot of Mount Kailash in the Tibet autonomous region to provide better services for visitors.

The post office is in Ngari prefecture's Burang county, more than 1,200 kilometers from Lhasa, the regional capital.

"It is the first big post office, with more functions and better services, in Ngari prefecture," said Gyime Wangchuk, head of Ngari's tourism development commission.

It will enable tourists who visit the Mount Kailash-known locally as Gang Rinpoche-and Mansarovar Lake to send postcards featuring local scenery and other elements overseas, Gyime Wangchuk said.

The commission said the prefecture's postal company spent more than 800,000 yuan ($120,800) to construct the post office.

Ngari, which lies at the junction of the towering Kunlun, Gangdise and Himalaya mountain ranges, is known as the top of the roof of the world.

Located in western Tibet, with an average altitude of more than 4,500 meters and a population of just 110,000, it is one of the planet's least densely populated areas.

The prefecture is rich in Tibetan history and culture and attracts hundreds of thousands of tourists and pilgrims from around the world every year.

Ngari is the birthplace of Tibet's primitive Bon religion, and the area is also home to ancient frescos left behind by the Guge kingdom, which was formed in the 10th century.

Mansarovar Lake and Mount Kailash are regarded as sacred sites by Hindus, Buddhists, Jains and Bons. Mansarovar Lake, close to the source of Asia's four key rivers, is one of the world's highest large lakes and China's most transparent freshwater lake.

The prefecture received 660,000 visitors last year, with tourism revenue of more than 750 million yuan, and welcomes more than 30,000 Indian pilgrims every year, according to the commission.

The post office's deputy manager, Tsering Dondrup, said it will develop more tourism products featuring traditional Tibetan culture and the area's unique landscape.

"We will create more ecological tourism products so visitors can buy the products near the scenery sites and mail them out via the post office," he said.

Gyime Wangchuk said the post office provides a range of services, including mailing and postmarks, a Tibetan ethnic products shop, and a souvenir shop.

"We hope the post office will help to make Ngari more known to the outside world, and it will help to promote the prefecture's tourism and cultural development," he said.