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You are hereHomeNews › Ancient Tibetan temples get makeover

Ancient Tibetan temples get makeover


Let's head to southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region, where ancient Buddhist temples dating back several centuries are receiving a facelift.

A professional team is hard at work to ensure an authentic restoration at Sera Monastery near the regional capital Lhasa.

The Sera Monastery plays a major role in Tibetan Buddhism and culture.

But 600 years of exposure to the plateau's harsh weather has taken its toll on the temple just north of Lhasa.

Now, it's being restored to its former glory, with 25 million yuan from the government, and a lot of local love.

Tamping the floor becomes a performance of joy. The material called Aga is made of rocks and soil, and is also used for the roofs of Tibetan buildings.

The entire complex is getting a make-over.

These workers are using twigs of Bianma, a willow native to the Tibetan plateau. It's primarily used for eaves and windowsills, and is stained red - a color that represents nobility.

Awang Luozhu, Director, Cultural Relics Perservation Team, said, "The original beams were damaged by strong winds. We're renovating them based on their original pattern. It looks beautiful and is very light, but the timber can only be found on the foot of snowy mountains."

The artwork presents perhaps the biggest challenge.

The murals and iconic Thanka, or Tibetan silk painting, are especially delicate. Parts of the wall have swelled and paint has peeled away. Restoration will require artistic and technological skills as well as the proper materials.

Work has finished on most of the main hall, this time with water-proof materials. The project should keep Sera Monastery in fine shape to be enjoyed for many generations to come.