Compared with other cities of China, the entertainment in Lhasa seems more low-key and simple. To tourists and travelers in Lhasa, nightlife activities are often limited to watching a Tibetan singing and dancing show, taste snacks around the night market, or find a decent pub or bar for a drink with friends.
Night market & Night snacks
The most famous night market in Lhasa, is Tianhai Night Market on the west suburb of city. Visitors from home and abroad are enchanted by the many stalls of snacks, fruits, and handicrafts lining the street. Each night, the street is crowded and illuminated. Tianhai Night Market is known for its great variety of goods and for being cheaper than the market on the Barkhor Street.
For your first visit to Lhasa, it is definitely worthwhile to watch a Tibetan singing and dancing show-- called Langma opera in Tibetan. Originally, Langma meant 'royal music' in Tibetan but, over time, the opera became a favorite among locals and commoners. Xinshiji Langma Hall is one of the more authentic and pleasurable places to watch the performance, where visitors can drink beer and enjoy the dance in a truly cultural environment.
It's doubtful whether the tongue-in-cheek performance offered by the Shangrila Restaurant (Xianggelila Zangshi) inside the Kirey Hotel (tel. 0891/636-3880) qualifies as art, but it's certainly entertainment -- and kids love it! The campy pantomime is held nearly every night, and without giving away too much, watch out for the yak! The restaurant is open from 7:30am to 10:30pm, and the performance starts at 8pm. Reservations are recommended from July to September. An excellent Tibetan buffet can be enjoyed for Â¥50 ($6.50/Â£3.25).
Bars in Lhasa are attractive for their exotic flavors. Especially in the evening, foreigners like to choose a bar to meet friends and share their travel stories with each other. Sometimes, too, the bars are good places to sit quietly alone relaxing, reading books or listening to music.
Mayke Ame (Maji A'mi)
Mayke Ame (Maji A'mi) is the most enchanting place which travelers like to go. It is not only an excellent restaurant but also a bar full of ethnic characters. One of the interesting things you will find is the many volumes filled with stories written by former visitors. Of course, you can leave you own story when you go there, too. Mayke Ame, located on the corner of the Barkhor Street, also features a convenient internet bar as well.
Also located on Bankhor Street is a bar called Ganglamedo Cafe&Bar, in Tibetan it means 'snowdrop'. The bar is managed by a Chinese woman from Dalian, Liaoning Province. Upon entering the bar, visitors are greeted with many elaborate canvases and watercolor paintings with the set in Tibet. The strong artistic atmosphere makes the bar extremely popular and draws many guests from all around the world. Ganglamedo is well known for its delicious pastry and coffee.
Dunya Restaurant and Bar
Another good choice for travelers is the Dunya Restaurant and Bar on the east side of Yak Hotel. The managers of the bar are two westerners, so they offer the authentic western food such as pizza, pasta and coffee. The quiet and easy environment is perfect for reminiscing and conversation.
Address: No.100 East Beijing Road
Location: East Beijing Road
Features: Backpackers' favorite.
Location: No.77, West Beijing Road
Features: Western drinks and food, elegant atmosphere.
Location: South side of Jokhang Temple
Features: Quiet, good place for enjoying the street view.
National Music Country
Location: on the Bar Street opposite to Lhasa Hotel in the National Zhong Road.
Features: it is operated by a musician who takes characteristic music as the theme of the bar, which is also a good choice for relaxation.