Lhasa, (pronounced /ˈlɑːsə/ in English, IPA: [l̥ʰásə] or [l̥ʰɜ́ːsə] in Tibetan; Chinese: 拉萨; Pinyin: Lāsà) sometimes spelled Lasa, is the administrative capital of the Tibet Autonomous Region in the People's Republic of China. Lhasa is located at the foot of Mount Gephel.
Traditionally, the city is the seat of the Dalai Lama and the capital of Tibet. It is the location of the Potala and Norbulingka palaces (both are included in a World Heritage Site), and in Tibetan Buddhism is regarded as the holiest centre in Tibet. The city is home to 257,400 people as of the 2004 census estimate.
Lhasa literally means "place of the gods", although ancient Tibetan documents and inscriptions demonstrate that the place was called Rasa, which means "goat's place", until the early 7th century.