Just off the Songpan–Hezuo highway, 90km from Zöigê, you’ll find the scruffy, single-street village of LANGMUSI, whose surrounding forests, mountain scenery and lamaseries give an easy taster of Tibet.

Langmusi’s two small eighteenth-century lamaseries (¥30) sit at the western end of the village. Walk up the main street and bear right over a bridge, and the road leads uphill to Saizu Gompa, whose main hall’s walls are covered in pictures of meditating Buddhas and where you might see monks debating in the courtyard outside. For Gaerdi Gompa, bear left along the main road and then aim for the temple buildings in the back lanes; this is the larger complex with several sizeable, tin-roofed halls, but seems almost totally deserted.

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