Toilets of Tibet

I have stayed in Asia now for over 30 years and during this time have experienced a large variety of pretty awful toilets. However the during our 10 day trip to Tibet I was introduced to a new all-time low level of sanitary establishments.

These toilets usually consist of a hole in the floor of some building above a cesspit. There are no facilities like water or toilet paper so you had better be prepared. The smells and odours in these sometimes small enclosed toilets are really pungent so take a deep breath before entering.

Here are a few selected “outlets” for your excruciating enjoyment.

Jiangtangzhen, Tibet
A roof-top toilet in the small restaurant we stopped at for lunch in the village of Jiangtangzhen. To get to this scenic spot you had to climb up a rather shaky wooden ladder at the rear of the restaurant. Big plus was a stunning panoramic view over the village as you went about your business.
Qomolangma National Nature Reserve, Tibet
This stand-alone toilet building stood out against the harsh rugged montainside at the check point in Qomolangma National Nature Reserve.
Road from Shigatse to Namtso Lake, Tibet
A roadside toilet on the G318 route from Shigatse to Lhasa. Again you had a beautiful view over the fields and mountains as you made your deposit.
Road from Shigatse to Namtso Lake, Tibet
The open air toilet at the side of the small restaurant in Cha Jiawujiong where we had lunch at on the road from Shigatse to Namtso Lake.
Road from Shigatse to Namtso Lake, Tibet
The toilet at the restaurant in Cha Jiawujiong had a rather unique sloping shute from the hole in the ground heading down to a “catchment area”. Gotta love those modesty barriers!
Road from Shigatse to Namtso Lake, Tibet
By local standards this was a rather up-market toilet on the road from Shigatse to Namtso Lake close to the town of Yangbajain.
Namtso Lake, Tibet
The outside open air toilet at our “hotel” at Namtso Lake. It was a simple brick construction where you walked up a few steps to the 2 or 3 small holes in the ground under the open skies.
This toilet at our Namtso Lake “hotel” was really too bad to use and most people just used the surrounding area.

Passionate Photographer …. Lost in Asia

Stuart Taylor of HighlanderImages Photography has been making images for over 30 years and can offer a diverse range of photo imaging services with a focus on Asia and a documentary/photojournalistic style. These services include planning and executing a photo shoot on location but importantly all the post-processing and image preparation needed for the specific finished media format required by the customer. Stuart’s experience and knowledge in all of these aspects make HighlanderImages Photography a one-stop-shop for a comprehensive and professional image production service.

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