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Sho Dun Festival 2019

A massive yoghurt festival that involves religious and cultural celebrations and attracts hundreds of thousands of spectators

The Sho Dun Festival is also known as the Yogurt Festival or Banquet. This event got its name from a centuries-old tradition of a yoghurt banquet prepared by people for monks. Later on, opera and theatre shows were added to the celebration.

The yoghourt
The yoghourt

Nowadays this event attracts hundreds of thousands of locals and visitors. It is held annually at Norbulingka Palace in Lhasa. The festival is held in summer, but the dates vary from year to year (from 1st to 7th of the 7th Month of Tibetan Calendar) The Sho Dun Festival usually consists of three main parts: the Great Buddha Display, the Tibetan Opera Show, and the Horsemanship and Yak Race Show.

A famous Buddha Thangka can be seen at Drepung and Sera Monasteries, which marks the beginning of the celebration.

Tibetan Opera shows are held in Norbulingka from 11 am till dark. Whole families come to admire the plays and various shows while sitting on mats and tasting traditional butter tea. Ethnic songs and dances, colourful costumes, and night bonfires are also part of the celebration. It's a great time to observe the culture, religion, and traditions of Tibet.

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