The Jokhang, along with the Potala, is probably the most popular tourist attraction in Lhasa, and is the most sacred and important temple in Tibetan Buddhism. It is situated right in the heart of Barkhor Square in the Tibetan part of Lhasa. Surrounded by hundreds of stalls selling anything from prayer wheels to Tibetan jewelery, it is the liveliest place you can imagine – and not only because of tourists. The Jokhang is a key center of Buddhist pilgrimage because its main hall houses the perhaps single most venerated Buddha statue in Tibetan Buddhism.
Early morning and evening, hundreds of Buddhists make the circumambulation, or kora, of the Jokhang while others are lined up side by side in front of the temple doing their prostrations. Kora refers to the Buddhist practice of walking in a clockwise fashion around religious objects or buildings in order to earn religious merit. We love to spend our evenings joining in on the kora walking round and round the Jokhang and watching the pilgrims while the sun is setting behind the Potala.