Dazzling Yamdrok-tso is one of Tibet's four holy lakes (the others are Lhamo La-tso, Nam-tso and Manasarovar) and home to wrathful deities. Its turquoise waters are shaped like a coiling scorpion, doubling back on themselves on the western side, effectively creating a large island within its reaches. Most travellers see the lake from the summit of 4795m Khamba-la as they drive en route between Lhasa and Gyantse.

Devout Tibetan pilgrims circumambulate the lake in around seven days but most western travellers are content with views of the lake from the drive. The lake lies several hundred metres below the road at 4440m, and in clear weather is a fabulous shade of deep turquoise.

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1. Khamba-la

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