Ngamring County Festivals and Activities
There are many different Tibetan festivals and events. Tibetan New Year(藏历新年), Jiongba Tibetan Opera(迥巴藏戏) and so on. Other festivals are associated with Buddhist monasteries and local traditions and customs.
So a Tibet Shigatse Ngamring County tour, especially one including a minority festival, is the ideal way to experience the culture of Tibet.
Tibetan New Year(藏历新年)
Tibetan people in Shigatse would celebrate new year for twice, even three times, Tsang New Year or Farmers’ New Year, Chinese New Year and Tibetan New Year. The last is the most grandest. The Tibetan New Year starts on Dec. 29th in Tibetan calendar. On that afternoon, local Tibetan men wash their hair after cleaning their houses and painting the Eight Auspicious Symbols on the walls. It is said that this will help the men have black and shiny hair and bring good luck to the family. Women cannot wash their hair that afternoon because it is believed it would have the opposite effect. On New Year's Eve, the same ceremony to drive out evil spirits is carried out in every family. Instead of throwing away the remains of the Guthuk and the burning torch, the men of the family climb onto a hill far from the house and burn a boiled sheep head until black, which will be offered at the family shrine as a sacrifice.
The young men and women get up around dawn on New Year's Day. Dressed in their festive best, some of them climb onto hills to erect new prayer flags for the village.
Prayer flags are square pieces of fabric with prayers printed on them, strung together and hung from a large timber flagpole. Each flutter of a flag in the wind is another recitation of the prayer printed on it, for the benefit of the community. The others go to streams or wells for "new water."Then the family will have lunch at which they share a sheep's head, sausages and wheat porridge, and drink highland barley liquor on the first day of the first Tibetan month.
On the second day of the Tibetan New Year, all families gather in their neighborhood squares to burn juniper branches and offer highly alcoholic barley liquor and snacks as sacrifice to the area's deity of the land and protector deities.
Starting on the third day of the New Year, banquets for friends and relatives are held one after another.
Jiongba Tibetan Opera(迥巴藏戏)
Jiongba Tibetan Opera Troupe was the earliest one established among Blue Mask Opera(蓝面具戏). It is said that they used to performing for Panchen Lama in Shigatse, duo to a trusted follower of the thirteenth Dalai Lama liked Jiongba so much, then he introduced the troupe to the audience in Lhasa. Then the troupe of Jiongba Tibetan Opera became popular in Tibet.