Monday, May 01, 2006

Rip-off Potala

So, remember how taken I was with the first sight of the Potala Palace? Yeah, well it's still magnificent and all from the outside but paying to go in is just one big rip off!

We thought that we could dedicate one full day to this place as it was huge and it would take us all day to explore all the different nooks in this place. So we showed up nice and early at 9am to buy our ticket for the day and guess what? They rationed the tickets! So we had to get a stub saying that we can get in at 3pm that day! 3pm! That only gives us 2 hours to explore! That can't possibly be enough.. especially with the 100 Y entrance fee we wanted to spend all day there! We contemplated coming back at the end of the day instead to get our 9am stub for the next day. After much talk, we realized that we might not be able to explore the palace on our own and might be shuffled through ... much like Versaille. We decided to just show up at 2:30 to try and get in a little earlier which we did. Alright... 2.5 hours to explore! Jokes on us.

So much was blocked off with ropes, we were literally shuffled from room to room. We were done in pretty much an hour and a half. Great. 100Y for an hour and a half. At least we saw the tomb of the 5th Dalai Lama (14.9 m high!) ... that was quite the sight. We saw a few other tombs and thrones of other Dalai Lama's as well which was kinda cool but overall, it was a bit of a disappointment.


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