The two things that I liked most in Himachal, both are from the Tibetan culture -Thangka painting and the Tibetan butter tea. And incidentally I got the opportunity to explore and enjoy both during a mystical afternoon at the Norbulingka Institute in Dharamshala.
Thangka paintings are typically meant for religious practices and meditation. But the most interesting fact about Thangka is that it provides iconographic information about deities, sacred objects and therefore helps the practitioners to develop a clear idea about the deity. So making of a Thangka painting requires precision in drawing and measurements and strictly following a set of rules .
The Norbulingka Institute has come up mainly to revive the Tibetan Art and Culture and very nicely they are working on different aspects of Tibetan art and culture.
Not only Thangka painting, it supports Thangka applique, wood carving, wood painting, weaving etc different handicrafts.After taking a round in the institute we stopped by the Norling Hummingbird Cafe .
Just out of curiosity I wished to try Tibetan butter tea. It was simply marvellous! I enjoyed every sip and still wish to have it once more. Later I came across different versions of Tibetan butter tea but that taste, that ambience was matchless. Yak butter, the main ingredient is something new to us but it is a staple food item among the Tibetans and also throughout the Himalayan regions. Fat content in Yak’s milk is much greater than cow’s milk and so is the butter.Therefore in high altitudes and cold climates it’s a good option to have yak butter to get more calories any way .