Shannan Overview

Shannan Overview will help you have a more comprehensive understanding of Shannan City according to the basic information, geographical location, climate, culture, tourism and so on. Lhoka(Shannan) is the birthplace for Tibetan people and culture where the first palace in Tibetan history, Yungbulakang Palace, is built, the first monastery, Trandruk Temple, is stood and first king, Nyatri Sanpo, was borned. It borders India and Bhutan to the south and southwest. Here you can feel the original Tibetan culture and customs. 

Basic Information


Shannan belongs to the typical southern Tibetan valley. The terrain gradually decreases from west to east, with an average elevation of about 3,700 meters. There are many snow-capped mountains in Shannan, and there are more than 10 snow-capped mountains at an altitude of 6,000 meters above sea level. Among them, there are 5 mountain peaks opening to the outside world, which are located in Cona County, Lhozhag County and Nagarzê County, with an average elevation of nearly 7,000 meters.


Shannan(Lhoka) enjoys a temperate and dry climate, with average annual rainfall of less than 450 millimeters. The rainy season is concentrated between June and September. Annual sunshine is between 2,600 and 3,300 hours. Average annual temperature is between 6.0 and 8.8℃, with the record high at 31℃ and a low at 37℃ below zero. Average annual wind speed is about 3 meters/second, with the fastest speed at 17 meters/second. The windy season is concentrated between December and March of the next year. There are several features of Shannan(Lhoka) Climate, such as, not distinct four seasons, moderate temperate, adequate light, thin air, dry, uneven distribution of annual precipitation, and diverse climate resource allocation.

Best Time to Visit Shannan

The best time to visit Shannan(Lhoka) is from June to August. However, Shannan is suitable for visiting all year round. Shannan Prefecture is located in the river valley of the middle reaches of the Yarlung Zangbo River, belonging to the temperate semi-arid and sub-humid plateau monsoon climate, with a long winter without summer, no cold winter. The average annual temperature is 5 ~ 8 ℃, the average temperature in the coldest month is 2 ~ 12 ℃, and average temperature of the warmest month is 10 ~ 18 ℃. It is the prefecture which is relatively warm in the entire Tibetan Plateau.

Administrative Divisions

As of February 2016, Shannan City has jurisdiction over 1 municipal district (Nedong District) and 11 counties, 24 towns, 56 townships, and 596 administrative villages. The municipal government is located in Nedong District.


Shannan is one of the birthplaces of ancient Tibetan civilization. Legend has it that the union of Hanuman(神猴) and Raksasi(罗刹女) has given birth to a land of Tibetans with a long history and splendid culture. About forty or fifty thousand years ago, there were Tibetan ancestors in the vicinity of Yalong River Valley. The ancestors lived with leaves as the clothing and the wild fruit for the food in Yalong River Valley where gathered in the cluster of birds and beasts. After a long period of time, they gradually learned how to make bows and arrows, stone tools and other tools, and learned to raise yak and other animals and plant crops such as barley. The land of Sedom in the vicinity of Sare Village is the first farmland in Tibet.

More about Shannan History


As one of the important destinations in the classical Tibet Travel, Shannan is the base camp of 14 ethnic minorities with Tibetans as its main body and a population of about 370,000. Shannan Culture is very colorful. When you come to the mysterious Shannan, it is easy to find Tibetan architecture everywhere and listen to the Tibetan language said by Tibetan people and feel the Tibet culture.


Due to the development in recent years, the transportation system of Shannan is considerately improved. It consists of 12 counties all of which are connected by highways. Travelers can directly head to most of Shannan attractions, such as Samye MonasteryYamdrok Lake, etc. Generally, flight and driving are two better choices to get to and out of Shannan.

Things to Do in Shannan

Shannan, a place with long history, is always a heaven for many people all over the world. Shannan is also a perfect destination for people who want to seek for antiquity, explore the fascinating natural sceneries. When you come to Shannan, the top attractions in Shannan are must-visit. Shannan, known as a land of wonders, both natural and man-made, will make you forget to leave.

Matters need attention

  • Take care of your luggage and important things, such as passport and visa.
  • Check out the weather report before your travel. Do not go sightseeing in bad weather.
  • Respect and follow local custom and avoid conflicts.


In 2013, Shannan's GDP reached a total production value of 8.6 billion yuan, with an increase of 17.7%. The fiscal revenue and tax revenue increased at a high level, and the estimated fiscal revenue was 790 million yuan, with an increase of 31%. The estimated tax revenue was 1.47 billion yuan, with an increase of 69.6%. Registered private companies and registered capital increased by 61.72% and 145% respectively. Investment promotion continued to deepen, with funds in place of 2.47 billion yuan, an increase of 71.53%. The growth rate of GDP was 17.7%; the investment in social fixed assets increased by 23.4%. The growth rate of fiscal revenue reached 26%; the per capita income of farmers and herdsmen increased by 18%. The proportion of the three industries is 5.8:47.7:46.5.

Natural Resources

According to the data on land use in 2014, the total land area of Shannan City is 79,235,535.29 hectares, of which the agricultural land area is 647,084.91 hectares, accounting for 81.65% of the total land area; the construction land area is 22,558.63 hectares, accounting for 0.28% of the total land area; the other land area is 143,194.75 hectares, accounting for 18.07% of the total land area.

Water Resources

There are many rivers and lakes in Shannan City, and the water resources are very rich. The lake has a water storage capacity of 17 billion cubic meters, a glacial reserve of about 1 billion cubic meters, a groundwater of about 23 billion cubic meters, and an annual average runoff of 55.02 billion cubic meters. The theoretical reserves of hydropower resources in the city are 35.1 million kilowatts.

Animal Resources

The domesticated animals in Shannan City include goat, sheep, cattle, yak, horse, donkey, mule, pig, chicken and duck. Wild animals include the national second-class protected animals, black-necked crane, argali, wild yak, and Tibetan antelope. In addition, there are river deer, deer, mongolian gazelle, buffalo, bear, leopard, monkey, lynx, otter, snow pig, and snow pheasant. pheasants, wild ducks, swans, pelicans and fish.

Plant Resources

Shannan City is rich in barley, wheat, broad bean, pea, corn, buckwheat, rapeseed and other crops. It is one of the main producing areas of Tibet's grain and oil. The vegetables include radish, potato, cabbage, pepper, bean, tomato, pumpkin, etc. The wild plant resources are extremely rich, and there are only a few hundred kinds of medicinal plants. The famous medicinal materials are Cordyceps, Fritillaria, Salvia, Angelica, Codonopsis, Poria, Rhubarb, and Snow Lotus. The main forests are poplar, willow, larch, hemlock, fir, cypress, white birch, etc.

Mineral Resources

The mineral resources discovered in Shannan City include chromium, gold, copper, iron, antimony, lead, zinc, manganese, mica, crystal, jade and marble. Among them, chromium ore reserves are proven to be 5 million tons, accounting for 35-45% of the country's total reserves, with an average grade of more than 45%, which is the country's largest chromium ore resource base. Shannan City is located in the Gangdese metallogenic belt, the Yarlung Zangbo metallogenic belt, and the Himalayan metallogenic belt. The ore-forming geological conditions are superior. It has found 37 minerals and 108 mineral deposits. The dominant minerals are ferrochrome, lead and zinc, rock gold and copper.

Shannan Economy

Shannan Economy

Economy of Shannan desribes the Economy and environment including Income and Living Standards,Regional economies,Shannan GDP,Development,Investment cycles,Agriculture,Housing and construction,Energy and mineral resources,Industry and manufacturing,Hydroelectric resources,Financial and banking system,Stock Markets,Labour and...

Overview    Veiw
Shannan People and Population

Shannan People and Population

Population of Shannan introduces the official total population of Shannan’s permanent resident population and some information of Shannan people’s life, Ethnic groups,Rural migrants,official statistics,Shannan Population from 1960 to 2021,Historical...

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Shannan Geography

Shannan Geography

Geography of Shannan introduces the Ecological Environment of Shannan including the Topography,Landforms,Location, Mountains, Lakes, Rivers, Valleys,Regional Divisions,Hydrology,Mountainous Topography,Neighborhoods, Climate,Coordinates and Location Maps. Find the Key facts about Shannan’s most...

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Shannan Useful Numbers

Shannan Useful Numbers

Shannan Useful Telephone Numbers introduce numbers of police, fire, ambulance, travel service, time check, weather information, post code check, embassy and consulates, taxi dispatch, airport, railway stations, bus stations,...

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Shannan Ethnic Culture

Shannan Ethnic Culture

According to the long record of Shannan(Lhoka) history, it has many “firsts” honor and that’s the reason why Lhoka was recognized as “the cradle of Tibetan culture”. They are:...

Culture    Veiw