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Kailash Mansarovar Yatra: Follow the 9 Steps in 2024

January,05 2024 BY Sonam Tenphel 0 COMMENTS

Every year, thousands of people travel to Mount Kailash in Tibet to make an important spiritual pilgrimage. The Kailash Manasaravor Yatra is the most famous pilgrimage tour in Tibet. It is a thrilling adventure through a land of exceptional natural beauty and deep cultural significance.、

There is a lot to know about the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra and some physical challenges involved. To help you prepare, follow these 9 steps for Kailash Yatra in 2024.

1. Can I Take a Kailash Yatra Right Now?

Currently, the Kailash Yatra is temporarily unavailable for Indian passport holders. We are dedicated to keeping you updated on any changes in its availability for this group.

However, the opportunity is accessible to Indian citizens holding passports from other countries, allowing them to take this sacred journey.

For international tourists, the Kailash trekking tour remains available from April to October every year. Winter is too cold to do the trek in Mount Kailash.

2. When is the Best Time for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra in 2024?

April to October is the most popular time for Kailash Manasarovar Yatra, but there are some special times to go during that period.

The single best time for Kailash Manasarovar Yatra is during the Saga Dawa Festival on the full moon day of the fourth month of the Tibetan Lunar Calendar. It celebrates the birth, enlightenment, and death of Buddha. A Kailash kora during that time has added spiritual significance. It is believed that merit earned from the pilgrimage is multiplied during the Saga Dawa Festival. The 2024 Sada Dawa Festival will be on May 23rd.

Not only the Sada Dawa Festival but every full moon day is also considered auspicious for taking the Kailash Yatra. The full moon adds to the spiritual atmosphere and makes for visually stunning nighttime scenes. Occurring roughly once a month, there are many opportunities to take a Kailash Yatra while weather conditions are good between April and October.

3. The Most Recommended Kailash Yatra: 16 Days Tibet Trip with 4 Days Trekking to Touch Mt.Kailash

There is no better experience than to take our 16-day Lhasa to Mount Kailash tour with a 4-day trek to touch Mount Kailash. The tour starts in Lhasa, where you can see some of Tibet's most iconic sites while adjusting to the higher altitude. Potala Palace, Drepung Monastery, and Jokhang Temple are among the many things to see there.

The next several days are spent seeing the beautiful landscapes and sites along the way to Mount Everest. You'll visit places such as Yamdrok Lake, the Korola Glacier, and the city of Shigatse. Of course, there will also be time to spend the night at Everest Base Camp, taking in the sunset and sunrise views of the towering mountain.

Next is on to Darchen, where you'll make the trek to Mount Kailash. Different from other classic Kailash trek which generally takes 3 days, we specially designed this journey with a 4-day trekking around Mount Kailash. On Day Two, you will have a full-day trek near Dirapuk Monastery. While trekking up to the glaciers and ice rivers, you may have a chance to touch the sacred mountain.

touch Mount KailashYou may get a race change to touch Mount Kailash during the in-depth 4-day trek.

The kora is followed by a visit to Lake Manasarovar before starting back for Lhasa. The return journey includes the scenic wonders of the Ngari Plateau and hidden gems in the Gyirong Valley.

This 16-day journey could definitely provide an in-depth Kailash Yatra experience for a lifetime.

However, we understand this pilgrimage yatra may not be for everyone. If you just want to take a trek around Mount Kailash, without any religious purpose, you can take the 15 Days Kailash and Manasarovar Small Group Tour with the classic 3-day trek around Kailash.

4. How Difficult Is the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?

Kailash Manasarovar Yatra is a physical and mental challenge for both pilgrims and ordinary tourists.

While taking the Kailash Kora, you have to trek on your own at an average altitude of 5,000 meters and pass through the Drolma La Pass at an altitude of 5,630 meters. Even though you can take a car around the holy lake, the very primitive and basic accommodations, camping, or guest houses, don’t make the yatra a very easy experience.

Although it is a strenuous trek, we do our best to provide you with the most comprehensive coverage possible. The professional guide and the local driver will take you safely to Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar. Our local guides all have many years of experience in Kailash Manasarovar yatra. They are familiar with the terrain and are professionally trained to know how to deal with the possible altitude sickness during the kora.

The map of the Kailash Manasarovar YatraThe map of the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra.

5. How Much Does Kailash Manasarovar Yatra Cost?

The Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar tour can be considered one of the most expensive itineraries in Tibet. The high price is not because of how advanced the accommodation and other conditions are, but because the transportation cost is higher due to the long way to the holy mountain from Lhasa.

The 16-day Kailash Mansarovar Yatra during the Saga Dawa Festival in 2024 costs 2209 USD. The general 15-day Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar tour costs around 2059 USD per person, based on the 3-star hotel standard in a group tour. If you take a customized private tour, the price may be higher. You can contact us and get a specific quote for your ideal trip.

6. What is the Age Limit for Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?

There are no age limits for Kailash Manasarovar Yatra, but there are some things to consider. Elderly travelers should be in good health and get a physical check-up at a doctor's before the trip. People over 70 are generally not recommended to undertake a Kailash Manasarovar Yatra.

Senior Tourist to visit Mount KailashOur senior customer finished the 3-day Mt. Kailash Kora at the age of 82.

Similarly, children under the age of 7 are not recommended. Altitude sickness is a real danger when traveling in Tibet, and younger children are not able to communicate their symptoms clearly. The lack of facilities and limited meal options can also make traveling with children in remote areas such as Mount Kailash difficult.

7. What Kind of Permit Needed for Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?

The first permits needed for all travelers to Tibet are a Chinese Visa and a Tibet Travel Permit. The Chinese visa can be applied for at the nearest Chinese Embassy or Consulate. Applications can typically be made in person or by mail, and the processing time is four days.

After receiving your Chinese Visa, a Tibet Travel Permit is also needed to enter the Tibet Autonomous Region. You need to provide a scanned copy of your Chinese Visa and your valid passport. We will apply for that on your behalf, and it takes around 20 days to process.

Three additional permits are necessary to visit the Mount Kailash area, including The Alien's Travel Permit, Foreign Affairs Permit, and Military Permit issued by different parts of the government. These are included in our Mount Kailash tour packages, so you don’t need to worry about them.

8. Where to stay and what to eat during the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?

While doing the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra, accommodations are at monastery guesthouses along the kora route. The first is the guesthouse at Dirapuk Monastery. This will be your route's start and end point around the mountain and offers a breathtaking view of Mount Kailash. The second is at Zutulpuk Monastery, another important resting place for pilgrims. The name means "Cave of Miracles" for the meditation caves the monastery is believed to contain.

The monastery guesthouses offer simple but warm accommodations for both pilgrims and tourists. Rooms are quite basic here, with limited amenities. The guesthouses are dormitory style, with multiple beds per room. Despite the basic options, they offer an intimate and welcoming rest on your trek around the mountain.

Dirapuk Monastery Guesthouse DormitoryThe simple but clean 4-person dormitory at Dirapuk Monastery Guesthouse。

The guesthouses also offer simple yet hearty food. Typically, mainly local Tibetan cuisine. You’ll find vegetable soup, roasted barley (tsampa), egg fried rice, and Tibetan butter tea. All the food is adapted to help keep you warm and energized for trekking around the mountain.

There are also tent restaurants offering traditional local food that can be found along the Kora route. You can also bring your own pre-packaged meals and snacks to supplement your diet.

9. What to Prepare and Tips for Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?

Preparing for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra involves both physical and logical considerations.

Clothing and Gears

Sturdy hiking boots are extremely important for the long trek in rough terrain. Warm clothes are also essential. It is best to dress in layers as the temperature can vary throughout the day. Your outer layer should be waterproof in case of rain. Protection from the elements is another must. Bring a wide-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen for sun protection. Lim balm and a moisturizer will help avoid dry skin from the wind.

Health and Fitness

Make sure you are in good physical shape before your trip. Consult with a doctor before traveling for a physical check-up.

Altitude Acclimatization

It is suggested to spend a few days in Lhasa for acclimatization before setting out for higher altitudes. Before the kora, stay one night at Darchen at the foot of Mount Kailash for better preparation. During the kora, move slowly and stay hydrated.

If you feel any symptoms, tell your tour guide immediately for professional assistance.

Respect Local Customs

To fully respect the religious significance of the region, it's important to familiarize yourself with local customs and traditions. Modesty in attire is particularly crucial when visiting monasteries and religious sites.

Fortunately, our Tibetan local guide will provide valuable assistance in navigating and understanding these local customs, ensuring a culturally sensitive and enriching experience throughout your journey.

Photography

The awe-inspiring and unique landscape of Mount Kailash is perfect for taking photos, and there are numerous picturesque spots around Mount Kailash. Whether you're wielding a high-quality camera or relying on your smartphone, ensure you're well-prepared with spare batteries, a power bank, or a solar charger to navigate any electricity constraints. Additionally, it's courteous to request permission before photographing individuals to respect their privacy and local customs.

Conclusion

Every year, thousands of pilgrims throng to Mount Kailash. Some pilgrims even venture a much more demanding regimen, performing body-length prostrations over the entire length of the circumambulation. To some extent, Kailash Mansarovar Yatra is the ultimate destination for every pilgrim.

Moreover, many ordinary tourists also want to get a glimpse of Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar. To follow the Yatra route, you can enjoy the unending stretches of barren land, lush green valleys, snowcapped peaks, and pristine blue lakes. It is absolutely an experience of a lifetime.

You can take an in-depth 4-day trek to touch Mount Kailash, or simply enjoy a classic 3-day trek around Mount Kailash. The Lake Manasarovar Kora takes another 3 to 4 days by trekking or 2 to 3 hours by driving around Lake Manasarovar.

May to October is the best time to take Kailash Manasarovar Yatra, during which the weather is perfect for outdoor trekking.

The cost of Kailash Manasarovar depends on many aspects, such as your travel time, your travel length, your hotel standard, etc. To help you arrange your dream trip to Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar, our professional Tibet travel consultants are ready to serve you.

Sonam Tenphel

About the Author - Sonam Tenphel

With 20+ years of guide experience and tons of great reviews, Sonam Tenphel is one of the top-rated local Tibetan guides in our team. Polite, enthusiastic, and extremely attentive to every traveler’s needs, he is your best travel companion in Tibet and a walking dictionary of Tibetan culture and history.

Additionally, being a great photographer, Sonam helps you capture great Tibet travel moments and maximize your Tibet experiences like no other.

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