China to throw open Brahmaputra Canyon to int'l tourists | world | Hindustan Times
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China to throw open Brahmaputra Canyon to int'l tourists

world Updated: Jun 07, 2010 23:32 IST

China will throw open the Brahmaputra grand canyon, regarded as the best scenic spot in Tibetan valley, to international tourists, amid speculation that it plans to build the world's biggest hydro-power project on the trans-border river.

The Tibetan autonomous government will work with local tourist companies to further develop the tourist area into a world-class tourist spot, a report in the official media here said today.

Interestingly, while a number of official websites used the name Brahmaputra canyon as it is known in India and the world, the ruling communist party organ, Peoples Daily on its website called it the Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon the Tibetan name by which the river Brahmaputra was always referred to in official Chinese media.

In recent years, the government and tourism companies of Tibet Autonomous Region have invested heavily in the construction and development of The Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon Scenic Spot, the world's largest canyon, the report in the Peoples Daily said.

"It has now become one of the most attractive tourist spots in Tibet. Tourists can see spectacular snow-capped mountains and enjoy the fun of walking through gorges and white-water rafting," it said.

Located in Tibet's Linzhi (Nyingchi) area, the Canyon is 504.6 kilometres long and ranks first in many aspects such as length, depth, hydropower resources and biodiversity.

The Brahmaputra River passes the world's 15th highest peak Mt Namjagbarwa at the eastern end of the Himalayas and forms a horseshoe shape along the mountain.

Incidentally this is was the location where Chinese government has reportedly received proposals to build world's biggest dam to generate over 22000 mw of power.

The Chinese government has not reacted to the reports published in the British media recently. The canyon has an average depth of 5,000 meters and is only 35 meters wide at its narrowest point.

The rapid changes in elevation and the vertical distribution of climate have made the canyon a perfect place for almost all types of biological communities such as those inhabiting cold zones, temperate zones, subtropical zones and tropical zones.

Traveling through the canyon, hiking enthusiasts can have a panoramic view of the magnificent scenery of the great canyon, and enjoy the beautiful scenery of Mt Namjagbarwa and Tsangpo Badong Waterfall," said Qi Wei, deputy general manager of Yarlung Tsangpo Grand Canyon Tourism Development Company.

It is estimated that the scenic spot will attract more than 300,000 visitors in 2013, the report said.