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Yarlung Valley/China

Introducing Yarlung Valley

The Yarlung Valley (Yǎlǔ Liúyù) is considered the cradle of Tibetan civilisation. Tibetan creation myths tell of how the first Tibetan people evolved here from the union of a monkey and an ogre, and early histories state that the first kings descended from heaven on a sky cord at Mt Yarlha Shanpo on the western edge of the valley. The early Tibetan kings unified Tibet from their base here in the 7th century and their massive burial mounds still dominate the area around Chongye. Yumbulagang, perched on a crag like a medieval European castle, is the alleged site of Tibet’s oldest building, while Tibet's first cultivated field is said to lie nearby.

The major attractions of the Yarlung Valley can just about be seen in a day.