General Information for Visiting Dzogchen
Conditions have improved over the last few years and the Dzogchen valley now has a sporadic electricity supply and telephone system, but please bear in mind that conditions are still quite basic. The elevation of the monastery is around 4000m, which can cause problems for some people. If you have come straight to Dzogchen it is advisable to take it easy for a day or two to acclimatise.
The weather is very unpredictable, so it is a good idea to be prepared. A sun hat and sunglasses are essential, as are a waterproof coat, some warm clothes and a torch/flashlight. In winter, temperatures can go down to as low as -20°C and road conditions are treacherous.
There are several accommodation options available in the summer months. A few places in Dzogchen village offer rooms to visitors. There is guest house accommodation in Shira Sing Buddhist University, and Pema Tung Retreat Centre has two guest houses for visitors. All charge a fee and maybe full at certain times. Hot water is provided.
Food & Supplies
Chinese and Tibetan style restaurants can be found in the village. Several shops sell basic groceries and supplies. There is usually canteen food available in the university and retreat centre. Small shops operate at both locations but do not provide much in the way of food beyond instant noodles or biscuits.
Mobile phones on both China Mobile and China Unicom networks have somewhat intermittent 2G / 3G service in Dzogchen.