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Lhasa

Lhasa, with a history of 1,300 years, is the capital city of the Tibet Autonomous Region. Located at the north of the Lhasa River, which is a branch of the zigzag Yarlung Zangbo River, Lhasa is 3,650 meters above sea level. Having 7 counties and one district under its jurisdiction, it covers a total area of over 30,000 square kilometers, with an urban area of 523 square kilometers. Lhasa has a total population of 373,000, of which 130,000 live in the city. In Lhasa there are 31 nationalities such as Tibetan, Han and Hui, with Tibetans accounting for 87% of the total population.

As the political, economic, cultural and religious center of Tibet for a long time, Lhasa means "holy land" or the "place of Buddha " in the Tibetan language. The grand Potala Palace is a symbol of the unified supreme authority on politics and religion. As early as the 7th century, after Songtsan Gambo annexed neighboring tribes and unified Tibet, he moved the capital from Yalong to Luozi (today's Lhasa) and established the Tibetan Kingdom. After the liberation of Tibet on May 23, 1951, a new chapter was opened for Lhasa City. In 1960, Lhasa was approved by the State Council to set up a prefecture-level city and in 1982, and it was proclaimed as one of the first batch 24 historical-cultural cities by the State Council.   

Situated in the alluvial plain of a valley at 3,650 meters above sea level, Lhasa is one of the highest cities of the world in altitude. Its terrain slopes from east to west; the climate here belongs to the half drought plateau area with monsoons in the Temperate Zone. It is known as the "city of sunlight", for annual sunlight time here totals over 3,000 hours. The annual rainfall is between 200mm and 500mm, and concentrates from June to September, with most cases of night rains. The temperature ranges from 14 to 28, with huge changes from day to day. The air is thin; the weather is dry in winter and spring, with heavy winds; and the annual period without frost is between 100 and 120 days.

Being an old city on the plateau, Lhasa has impressed visitors with the blue sky, clean water, fresh air and pleasant environment. Endowed by nature with pure water and air, Lhasa is the least polluted city with the best environment in China.   

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