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Changtang Qiaqing Horse Racing Festival

Annually there are many horse racing festivals in Tibet with each locale celebrating with its own unique traditions. The most prestigious is the Changtang Qiaqing (summer in Tibetan) Horse Racing Festival, a must-go for Tibet's summer visitors.

Beginning on each August 10th, during peak season in northern Tibet, the festival is held in the town of Nakchu, where the Administrative Office of Nakchu Prefecture is seated. For one to two weeks, this small town is crowded with herders, merchants and visitors attracted by its fame. Daylight hours are spent with various horse racing contests, including speed contests, picking hada on horse back, horse racing archery, horsemanship performances, and others, squeezed among ballad and dancing shows. Nights are spent singing and dancing around campfires, celebrating nature's bounty. Throughout the festival, there always is a lively commodity fair, a great opportunity for shoppers. 

In general, entertainment in the Nakchu region as in all Tibetan regions, is closely associated with Tibetan festivals . In addition to the horse racing festivals, Tibetan New Year and various religious festivals also highlight the year in the life of northern Tibetans. Entertainment here really is better suited to visitors who shun the pace and tempo of modern urban lifestyles to seek for relaxation from enthusiastic Tibetan dances in a natural setting of pure waters and green plateaus.

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