Have ridden everything from ‘the train they call the City of New Orleans‘ to the Trans-Siberian, I’m always on the lookout for a new train trip. Recent word out of China and Tibet is that the Beijing-Lhasa route may finally be getting a fancy new luxury service, one costing upwards of $10,000 for a one-week trip. The latest
Oppression Orient Express could reportedly start as early as this month, though there is always the chance the long-rumored service may once again get put on hold.
As a previous visitor to Iran, North Korea, and other similar highlights of dictatorial nastiness, I’m not normally squeamish about the contentious practice of taking tourist dollars into regimes best left to wither and die – believing the best way to undermine such governments is through outside exposure and contact. However, Tibet has always given me pause, especially anything that could help the Han Chinese at the expense of the Tibetans. In this case, the outside contact appears to be part of the problem, rather than part of the solution.