Sunday, May 28, 2006

Mongolia | Ulaan Baatar | Zanabazar Street | Choijin Lama Museum

Strolled up to Lamrim Khiid on Zanabazar Street near Gandan Monastery.
New Stupa at Lamrim Khiid
Zanabazar Street, the wide two-lane boulevard which runs from the Big Ring Road up to the entrance of Gandan Monastery, has just been upgraded. Now there is a new tile-paved walkway down the middle between the two lanes. This medial strip has also just been planted with trees. This will make quite an impressive approach to Gandan Monastery when the trees are full grown—it’s impressive enough now.
New trees and walkway in the Zanabazar Street Medial Strip
Then I walked downtown to Choijin Lama Museum, where yet another refurbishing project is underway. Here a garden is being built in front of the museum complete with paved walkways, flowers beds, fountains, and benches for the weary of body and spirit.
New walkways, trees, flower beds, benches, et. al.
The new fountain in front of the Choijin Lama Museum
One of Ulaan Baatar’s ubiquitous street artists plying his wares in the new garden.

Although the tourist season has hardly just began there were three large groups of German tourists there, each group with twenty-to-twenty-five people. I popped in for a quick look around and discovered that the museum has been rearranged yet again and most of the statues are no longer where I described them in my Guide to Locales Connected with the Life of Zanabazar. Zanabazar’s Sitasamvara, for example, is back in the Yidam Temple at the back of the complex. In the Amagalan Temple I discovered that Zanabazar’s Ratnasambhava was missing. The woman in charge soon told me that it had been loaned to a museum in Bonn, Germany. It’s a bit ironic that over sixty German tourists are here see the artwork and one the best pieces is actually back in Germany.
Zanabazar’s Sitasamvara
See More of the Choijin Lama Museum.

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