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Tashilunpo Monastery

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Tashilunpo monastery in Shigatse was founded by Gendun Drubpa, the first Dalai Lama in 1477. The fourth Panchen Lama in 1600 expanded the monastery. About a hundred years later, the monastery became the official seat of the Panchen Lama.
Tashilunpo contains chortens, temples and the Panchen Lama's palace. The monastery is a remarkable red, white and black structure with a glided golden roof. Within the monastery there is a 5 story temple, which has a massive 26 meters (86ft) statue of the Maitreya Buddha. The statue was made out of 6,700 ounces of gold and over 115,000 kg of copper. One can also see the enormous Thangka wall at Tashilunpo; a wall used for displaying huge Thangkas (religious painted banners) for only a few festival days every year. The Wall lies northeast of the monastery. It is about 35 meters (115 feet) in height and 40 meters (131 feet) in width and can be seen from a distance. On April 14th of the Tibetan calendar every year, extremely large Thangkas of Buddha are displayed on this wall.

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