The First Lady’s Travel Journal: A Taste of Tibetan Culture

White House BlogPublished online March 26, 2014 by The White House Blog.
Please read the full article here.


First Lady Michelle Obama, Sasha, Malia and Mrs. Robinson are greeted by Tibetan students at the Zangxiang Village Tea House in Chengdu, China.

Chengdu is sometimes known as the “Gateway to Tibet” because it is located just a few hours from the towering mountains and rich culture of Tibet, which is a region of China. There are roughly 6.5 million Tibetans in China, and they are one of the largest and most well-known minority groups in the country.

For centuries, Tibet was largely unknown to the outside world — but today, Tibetan Buddhism (the main religion in this area) and its spiritual leader in exile, the Dalai Lama, are known across the globe for their teachings on compassion, forgiveness and tolerance. Tibet is also known for its beautiful, majestic landscapes. Some of the world’s tallest mountains are located there – if you want to scale Mount Everest, you can start from a base camp in Tibet.

To experience some of the rich culture of Tibet, we headed to the Zangxiang Village Tea House for a traditional Tibetan meal that included the following items: truk ja (yak butter tea), yak soup made with highland barley, sha pa le (yak pie made with minced onion and celery), boiled yak ribs, samba (a dense bread made with barley) and steamed vegetables with barley.

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