The Friendship Highway (also known as the China-Nepal Highway,Chinese: 中尼公路; pinyin: Zhongni Gonglu) is a 800 kilometres (500 mi) scenic route connecting the capital of Tibet, Lhasa, with the Chinese/Nepalese border at the Sino-Nepal Friendship Bridge between Zhangmu and Kodari. It includes the westernmost part of China National Highway 318 (Shanghai-Zhangmu) and crosses three passes over 5,000m before dropping to 1,750m at the border.
From Lhasa, the Friendship Highway follows the Kyi Chu river for about 60 km up to the confluence with the Yarlung Tsangpo River (Brahmaputra) at Chushul. The main route continues along the Yarlung valley up to Shigatse, Tibet’s second-largest city and formerly the home of the Panchen Lamas. A subsidiary branch crosses the Yarlung Tsangpo at Chushul and crosses the 4,800m high Gampa La, passes along turquoise Yamdrok Yutso lake before crossing the 5,045m high Karo La at the foot of Noijin Kangsang, and following downstream the Nyang Chu valley through Gyantse up to Shigatse.
Yamdrok Lake is a freshwater lake in Tibet, it is one of the three largest sacred lakes in Tibet. It is over 72 km (45 mi) long. The lake is surrounded by many snow-capped mountains and is fed by numerous small streams. The lake has an outlet stream at its far western end.
Around 90 km to the west of the lake lies the Tibetan town of Gyantse and Lhasa is a hundred km to the northeast. According to local mythology, Yamdok Yumtso lake is the transformation of a goddess.
Yamdrok Lake has a power station that was completed and dedicated in 1996 near the small village of Baidi at the lake’s western end. This power station is the largest in Tibet.
KARO LA PASS
The Karo La is a high pass in the Lhagoi-Kangri chain of the northern Himalayas on the border of the circles Nagarze and Gyangzê in the Tibet Autonomous Region . The western increase follows the Ngungtan, to the east of the rise of runs Yamdrok Yumtso the valley of the Kalurong. Just north of the pass, also known as Karu La La Karuo or in some sources is the plaid glaciers of Noijin Kangsang , south of the pass, the only weak glaciated Jitan rises Zhoma
Gyantse (also spelled Gyangtse; Tibetan: རྒྱལ་རྩེ་, Wylie: rgyal rtse, ZYPY: Gyangzê; Chinese: 江孜镇; pinyin: Jīangzǐzhèn) is a town located in Gyantse County, Shigatse Prefecture, Tibet Autonomous Region, China. It was historically considered the third largest and most prominent town in the Tibet region (after Lhasa, and Shigatse), but there are now at least ten larger Tibetan cities
Shigatse, officially known as Xigazê, is a prefecture-level city (182,000 sq. km.) of the Tibet Autonomous Region. It is located within the historical Tsang province of Tibet
It is roughly equivalent to the ancient Shigatse urban center, the second-largest city in Tibet, located about 280 km (174 miles) southwest of Lhasa and home to the massive and magnificent Tashilhunpo Monastery, traditionally the seat of the Panchen Lama.
Tashilhunpo Monastery founded in 1447 by the 1st Dalai Lama, is a historic and culturally important monastery in Shigatse, the second-largest city in Tibet
The monastery is the traditional seat of successive Panchen Lamas, the second highest ranking tulku lineage in the Gelug tradition of Tibetan Buddhism.
The “Tashi” or Panchen Lama had temporal power over three small districts, though not over the town of Shigatse itself, which was administered by a dzongpön (prefect) appointed from Lhasa.
Located on a hill in the center of the city, the full name in Tibetan of the monastery means: “all fortune and happiness gathered here” or “heap of glory”
Tashilhunpo in its heyday housed over 4,000 monks and had four Tantric colleges, each with its own Abbot.
After the death of a Panchen Lama, these four abbots led the search for his infant reincarnation and one of them always acted as a prime minister of Tsang under the control of the Dalai Lama in Lhasa
text taken from wikipedia