During the first several hours of the two-day event, believers fell over each other, by car or on foot, to gain advantageous positions to observe the ceremony.
Drepung, Sera and Ganden are the great three Gelug Sect monasteries in Tibet, with Drepung being the largest and most influential monastery of the sect, a branch of the Tibetan Buddhism.
The ceremony started at 8 o'clock, hosted by Drepung's abbot and living Buddhas. Eminent monks from other prominent monasteries also traveled here to express their congratulations.
On the first day, Drepung monks marked the anniversary by participating in the sorcerer's dance, a key religious ritual in Tibetan Buddhism performed by masked monks in beautiful costumes.
They wore masks with the faces of Buddha, Arhat and Dharmapala.
A huge Thangka painting depicting Buddha was taken out of the monastery and put on a platform for display, attracting over 10, 000 visitors and believers.
Thangka painting. (Xinhua/Jigme Dorje)
Situated a few miles west of Lhasa, the 600-year-old monastery covers an area of 250,000 square meters. It housed 7,700 monks and had 141 manors and 540 pastures in its heyday.
The monastery stands at the foot of the Gambo Utse mountain. Its name Drepung means a pile of rice, as row upon row of white buildings look just like rice pile from afar.
Against an impressive mountainous background, Drepung offers a majestic sight with its hundreds of large buildings nestled in a grandiose site.
Every year, many traditional Tibetan festivities are celebrated at the monastery, such as the Horse-racing Festival, the Grand Prayer Festival and the Shoton Festival.
The Drepung Monastery also houses many cultural relics like rare Thangka scrolls and Buddhist scriptures.