Tibetan Guozhuang Dance

Tibetan Guozhuang Dance

Course length available: 45m, 2h
Guozhuang is an especially unique ceremonial dance that is endemic to the region. It features dancing in a circle with singing and is unaccompanied by instruments. The dance was initially developed to be performed around a campfire in either a house or tent, and later became a staple of Tibet’s unique culture. The lyrics of the melodies the dancers will sing borrow inspiration from the local environment and reflect the animistic qualities of the region’s tradition. There are more than 300 variations of Guozhuang in Gyalrong alone, and Zhonglu features a specific variation found nowhere else in the world. In our Tibetan Guozhuang Dance program, you will have the chance to learn traditional Guozhong dance in Zhonglu, and dance with the locals around a campfire!
In this Program, you will participate in:
1.Learn movements and lyrics for one Tibetan Guozhuang dance.
2.Enjoy the campfire night with local dancer, try and learn different Gouzhuang dances.

Tibetan Prayer Flag Printing

Tibetan Prayer Flag Printing

Course length available: 45m, 2h, 4h
The Tibetan prayer flag is a hallmark of Himalayan culture. As you travel through the countryside of Tibet you are bound to see these colorful banners strung across the mountain sides. They have many symbolic meanings related to sacred prayers that generate merit to bolster one’s life force. Additionally, their five-color pattern reflects the five elements of the Tibetan culture. In this program, you’ll be taught to make an authentic Tibetan prayer flag using ancient wooding printing blocks from the famous Printing Institute in Dege; the same wood printing technique the locals have been practiced for generations. You will also have the chance to carve your own block and print your own prayer flag that feature wishes of your own!
In this Program, you will participate in:
1.Learn the history and current situation of Tibetan wood printing techniques.
2.Learn the symbols and scripts on the Tibetan prayer flags.
3.Print Tibetan prayer flags with the traditional technique.
4.Carve your own printing block and print your own flags using traditional techniques.
5.Hike to a nearby meditation cave in the village, hang your prayer flags and make wishes.

Tibetan Culinary Adventure

Tibetan Culinary Adventure

Course length available: 4h
Eastern Tibet features delicious cuisine found nowhere else in the world. With ingredients like the Sichuanese pepper, wheat, corn, walnuts, and a variety of fruits and vegetables, Zhonglu is a bread basket rich in flavor. With long agricultural history, locals in Zhonglu have an in-depth understanding of how the land works and have developed an array of unique recipes based on the products the region readily produces. In this ‘farm to table’ program, you’ll be taught the fundamentals of where food in Zhonglu comes from and how it’s prepared to create the mouthwatering dishes that make the region so unique.
In this Program, you will participate in:
1.Collect vegetables to cook from the field.
2.Learn to prepare a traditional Tibetan dish from our local master chef.

Towers of the Himalayas

Towers of the Himalayas

Course lengths available: 45min, 2h, 4h, 1 Day
For centuries, the Gyalrong Tibetans have built watch towers. These ancient structures are shrouded in mystery and their meaning and original purpose is far from certain. Scholars speculate that they are as old as 700 hundred years old, however since the local communities lack a written history this has been difficult to confirm. There are numerous popular folk stories and explanations for the towers and Zhonglu is said by some to feature the tallest and most numerous of the lower Himalayan region in the past. They are a prized hallmark of the local cultural aesthetic and are listed as one of China’s National Historical Relics. In this program, you will have the opportunity to learn more about the tower’s history, build a small replica tower and even climb one!
In this Program, you will participate in:
1.Understand the construction method and the practical functions of the towers
2.Climbing one of Zhonglu’s watchtowers
3.Mapping the tower and its surrounding environment
4.Utilizing traditional building methods to construct a mini-tower replica.

Gyalrong Embroidery and Weaving

Gyalrong Embroidery and Weaving

Course lengths available: 45m, 2h, 4h
The women of Gyalrong are famous for wearing headbands and dresses that feature a variety of rich floral designs, unique in the Chinese Himalayan region. Traditionally, young women in Zhonglu begin learning embroidery and weaving skills at the age of 12 and will perfect the technique throughout their lifetime. New patterns are created and draw inspiration from the natural landscape that surrounds them. For them, this practice is far more than a way to pass time, it is a vibrant expression of their cultural identity. In 2011, Gyalrong Embroidery and Weaving was listed as Chinese National Intangible Cultural Heritage, solidifying its recognition on a national level. In this program, you will get to know the fundamentals of Gyalrong clothing, learn embroidery and weaving techniques from the local women, and make beautiful pieces of your own!
In this Program, you will participate in:
1.Learn the clothing culture of Gyalrong Tibetan region.
2.Learn Tibetan embroidery techniques from local woman and then embroider your own piece.
3.Learn Tibetan weaving techniques from local woman, make a weaving piece of your own.

Tibetan Biodynamic Practices

Tibetan Biodynamic Practices

Course lengths available: 45m, 2h, 4h, 1Day

For generations, the Tibetan village of Zhonglu has maintained a waste-free, agricultural lifestyle. Over the course of thousands of years, the same fields were used repeatedly without exhausting the soil’s resources. Through traditional agricultural practices they consistently returned the organic materials back into the land. With this program, you will develop an in-depth understanding of indigenous Tibetan farming practices and how they utilize the symbiotic relationship between the plants, animals and people of this pristine region.

In this Program, you will participate in:

  1. Wheat, Corn, and Sichuan Pepper Farming
  2. Lessons in the use of biodynamic practices in Tibetan agricultural and nomadic areas.
  3. Lessons in daily composting and land fertilizing practices.
  4. Lessons in sustainable treatment of human waste.
  5. Practice in utilizing fermented materials for sheet mulching.