|File photo taken on Dec. 10, 2011 shows the total lunar eclipse in the sky above the Potala Palace in Lhasa, capital of southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region (a photo made from 22|
overlaid photos). Statistics showed the tourist arrivals in the Potala Palace reached 1.01 million in 2012, accounting for about one tenth of all tourist arrivals in Tibet in 2012. (Xinhua/Purbu Zhaxi)
The Potala Palace is a world famous tourist attraction in Lhasa, in Southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region. On Monday, the 1,300-year-old palace was added to the national 5A scenic spot list by the National Tourism Administration of China, becoming the first highest-level tourist attraction in Tibet.
The Potala Palace was first built in the seventh century, but was later burned to the ground in times of war. It was rebuilt by the fifth Dalai Lama in the 17th century. Repeated repairs and expansions, as well as long-time protection finally brought the structure to its present scale.
It is 360 meters long from the east to the west, 270 meters wide from the south to the north, with an area of 130,000 square meters. The Potala Palace is famous for its grand buildings, complicated constructions, special atmosphere and splendid artworks. It was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994.
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