13 Days Epic Adventure from Kathmandu to Lhasa Namtso and Everest
(KTT004) Kathmandu - Lhasa - Namtso - Lhasa - Gyantse - Shigatse - EBC - Gyirong - Kathmandu
Escorted by private guide and vehicle; leave 365 days a year!
Easy - suitable for all levels of fitness, family with kids and senior groups.
Trip Level Guide:
- Easy - suitable for all level of fitness, family with kids and senior groups.
- Moderate - suitable for ones with average level fitness, family with kids bigger than 12 yrs.
- Moderate to Strenous - suitable for ones physically fit; have experiences of high altitude trek.
- Strenuous: suitable for adventures and individual with physically fit and healthy.
One of the best multi-destination trips in the Himalayas, this 13-day epic adventure from Nepal to Lhasa and Lake Namtso is a great way to explore a little more of the areas of Tibet outside the main capital city. Taking you from the beautiful Kathmandu Valley to the City of Sunshine and the Heavenly Lake, this is the best way to visit one of Tibet’s most sacred lakes.
Starting with a tour of Kathmandu and the surrounding valley, you will get a chance to visit the amazing sites of Swayambhunath, Pashupatinath, and Boudhanath. You can also tour around the major Royal Squares in Patan, Kathmandu, and Bhaktapur, before flying off across the Himalayas to Lhasa. There, you will climb up to the iconic Potala Palace, visit the sacred Jokhang Temple, and tour the stunning local monasteries. Then travel north to visit the sacred Lake Namtso, one of the Great Three Sacred Lakes of Tibet. After stopping overnight in Damxung, you will head back to Lhasa. Then head out west to visit Shigatse and EBC, before crossing the border with Nepal at Gyirong Port and taking the drive back to Nepal’s Exotic capital.
At a GlanceDay 1
Arrive at KathmanduDay 2
Day Tour in Kathmandu: Kathmandu City, Swayambhunath and Patan CityDay 3
Day Tour in Kathmandu: Pashupatinath, Boudhanath and Bhaktapur CityDay 4
Fly from Kathmandu to LhasaDay 5
Lhasa Tour - Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street (B)Day 6
Lhasa Tour - Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery (B)Day 7
Lhasa to Namtso Lake and drive back to Damxung (B)Day 8
Damxung to Lhasa via Chimelong Nunnery and Tsurphu Monastery (B)Day 9
Lhasa - Shigatse via Gyantse (B)Day 10
Shigatse(3900m) to Everest Base Camp(5200m) (B)Day 11
EBC to Gyirong Border 370kmDay 12
Gyirong to Nepal Border (B)/ transfer to KathmanduDay 13
Day to Day Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive at Kathmandu
Arrive at Tribhuwan International Airport, Kathmandu, you are welcomed by the hospitable meeting and then you will be transferred to your hotel.
Stay overnight at hotel.
(Tips: since the processing of China Group Visa takes at least 3-business days, you are advised to arrive earlier in Kathmandu and give your original passport and personal photo and visa fee to our staff in Kathmandu and fill out the application form in-time.)
Day 2: Day Tour in Kathmandu: Kathmandu City, Swayambhunath and Patan City
The day starts with a tour of Kathmandu City, and takes in the famous Kathmandu Durbar Square. The most famous square in the city, the Durbar Square is the Royal Palace square in the city, and is surrounded by ancient buildings from the early 16th century. The magnificent architecture, exquisite decorations, and the intensity of historical items gives a great insight into Nepali culture.
You then continue the tour with a visit to the Swayambhunath Pagoda, which is one of the oldest Buddhist sites in Nepal. Swayambhunath is a huge golden stupa festooned with prayer flags that flutter in the breeze, on a hill that overlooks the entire city. Then it is on to Patan City, the second largest city in the Kathmandu Valley area. Patan City has one of the oldest Buddhist temples in Nepal that dates back to the 12th century, and is a great place to explore the Buddhist culture of Nepal.
Stay overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 3: Day Tour in Kathmandu: Pashupatinath, Boudhanath and Bhaktapur City
You will also get to go further afield in Nepal, to visit the ancient Hindu temple of Pashupatinath, and Boudhanath, one of the largest stupas in Asia, and a focal point for Tibetan Buddhism in Nepal. Set on the banks of the Baghmati River, Pashupatinath is one of Nepal’s famous UNESCO sites, and the sunset over the temple roofs is spectacular.
Another great place to see is Boudhanath, located on the ancient trade route. It is a place of meditation and part of the spiritual journey around Kathmandu. With one of the largest stupas in the world, it has been the site of many Tibetan prayers over the centuries. Bhaktapur Durbar Square is the last place to visit for the day, with its pagoda and shikhara temples strewn around the royal palace. The square really highlights the ancient building arts of Nepal.
Stay overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 4: Fly from Kathmandu to Lhasa
Taking direct flight from Kathmandu Tribhuvan International Airport to Lhasa Gonggar Airport. Upon your arrival in Lhasa, our Tibetan guide will be greeting you at airport with auspicious white Hada. Then you will be transferred to hotels in Lhasa. The guide will briefly introduce the itineraries and remind you about other dos and dont's for newcomers. To quickly get acclimatized to Tibetan plateau, it’s better to have a good rest in the hotel.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 5: Lhasa Tour - Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street (B)
Today's tour will first bring you to the Potala Palace which is the winter palace of the Dalai lama. It was put to use since the 7th Century by the 33rd great king of Tibet. The most valuable collections of Potala Palace are the gilded burial stupas of former Dalai Lamas and meditation Cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet.
Then after lunch, tourists head to Jokhang Temple which was founded by the 33rd great king of Tibet in the 7th century. Inside you can see the statue of Buddha Sakyamuni at the age of twelve. Outside, you can see pilgrims making prostrating in front of Jokhang Temple. Around the temple is Barkhor Street, where you can do kora (a religious circle of a building or mountain) with pilgrims and locals, and explore the old market. Besides, we can taste Tibetan tea with locals in tea house.
With time permitting, you may go with tour guide to visit Tibetan handicraft art or Tibetan Traditional Medicine center. You can upgrade your service to enjoy Tibetan Culture Show in the evening (fr. 60USD).
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 6: Lhasa Tour - Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery (B)
In the morning, you are going to visit Drepung Monastery which was one of the “Great Three” Gelug Monasteries of Tibet and was founded in 1416 by Jamyang Choge, one of the Tsongkhapa’s main disciples. Ganden palace is used as Dalai Lama’s palace in the Drepung before moving to the Potala Palace.
In the afternoon, you will visit Sera Monastery which is another one of the “Great Three” Gelug Monasteries of Tibet and founded in 1419 by Jamchen Chojey, one of the Tsongkhapa’s main disciples. The highlight is the monks’ debate at around 3 - 5 in the afternoon.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 7: Lhasa to Namtso Lake and drive back to Damxung (B)
In the morning, drive from Lhasa to Lake Namtso, one of the four holy lakes of Tibet and also the highest saline lake in the world. On the way, you can see snow-capped Nyenchen Thanglha Mountain Ranges and lots of nomads and their tent with grazing yak and sheep densely-populated on the flourishing grassland (in summer). Besides, you can enjoy the view of the Sky-Road Railway with snow mountain background; while standing at the famous Lagenla Pass(5190m), you can view the stunning vista of holy Namtso Lake.
Then we can enjoy our time doing a leisurely trek around Tashi Dor Island and along the lakeshore. Drive back to Damxung. (For environment protection, the Lakeshore guesthouses were close by the government.)
Stay overnight in Damxung.
Day 8: Damxung to Lhasa via Chimelong Nunnery and Tsurphu Monastery (B)
After breakfast, we will first visit Chimelong Nunnery (Phyirmil Lung Nunnery). Roam over the peaceful small nunnery and get an idea of different Buddhist studies in Tibet, you may also spot a sky burial site (Tibet funeral site) in the distance.
Then, we can go to Tsurphu Monastery, the seat of the Karmapa branch of the Kagyupa order of Tibetan Buddhism. Here, you can learn more about the ‘Black Hats’, THE Karma Kagyupa school of Tibetan Buddhism. In the summertime (June to September), we can also go for a ‘Linka outing’ (Tibetan-style picnic) in the small village at the foot of the hill of Tsurphu Monastery.
Finally, we will drive back to Lhasa.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Today’s Cultural Tips: Sky burial is a funeral practice commonly seen in Tibet. The corpse will be disposed of and later devoured by vultures. In Tibetan Buddhism, sky burial is believed to represent their wishes to go to heaven. Only family members of the dead can attend the funeral.
Day 9: Lhasa - Shigatse via Gyantse (B)
In the morning, drive from Lhasa to Shigatse. On the way, drive over the Gampala Pass(4790m), and you will have a glimpse of Yamdrok-tso(4400m). The Lake is surrounded by many snow-capped mountains and in the distance you can have spectacular views of Holy Mount Nyenchen Khangsar(7191m), the highest mountain near Lhasa .
Later, we will pass and enjoy the Korola Glacier on the roadside. At Manak Dam Lake, you can hang pray flag at Simila Mountain Pass. Then, we will arrive in Gyantse, historically Tibet's third largest city (after Lhasa and Shigatse). In Gyantse, we will visit the famous Pelkor Monastery and Gyantse Kumbum and enjoy the Far view of Gyangtse Fortress.
After one and a half driving, we arrive in Shigatse, which is the second largest city in Tibet. In Shigatse, we may visit traditional Barley Mill and view the landscape of Barley Field (in summer).
Stay overnight in Shigatse.
Day 10: Shigatse(3900m) to Everest Base Camp(5200m) (B)
In the morning, we will visit the home of Panchan Lama - Tashilunpo Monastery. Then, we’ll leave Shigatse after getting your Alien’s travel permit, and then drive to Lhatse, it is a small town where you can have lunch.
After that, we will pass Tsola Pass(4600m), and Gyatsola Pass(5248m). Shortly after we enter Mt. Everest National Nature Reserve, tourists can enjoy the panorama of Himalaya at Gawula Pass(5198m). Then we drive along the New zigzag road to Everest Base Camp(5200m). You can get closer to gaze at the Mt. Everest peak. The sunset of golden Everest peak if time and weather permits at the lodging area.
Stay overnight at tent or Rongbuk monastery guest house.
Day 11: EBC to Gyirong Border 370km
In the morning, you can appreciate the sunrise of Everest Peak if weather permits at the lodging area and then visit the Rongbuk Monstery - the unique highest monastery with nuns and monks living together. Later, we can visit the Everest Base Camp and take pictures of Mt. Everest at the closes distance in EBC. After that, we can drive from EBC to Kyirong border. On the way, tourists can enjoy breathtakign vista of Mt. Shishapangma and the Pekutso Lake. After passing the Ghungtang Lhamo(5236m), we will arrive in Kyirong in late afternoon.
Stay overnight in the guesthouse in Kyirong.
Day 12: Gyirong to Nepal Border (B)/ transfer to Kathmandu
In the morning, your guide will assist you to exit China, and will see you off at the border with Nepal. On the other side, our guide from Nepal will meet you and transfer you to Kathmandu, and your hotel. The rest of the day is yours to look around the area, or just rest in your hotel after the rigorous trip across Tibet.
Stay overnight at hotel in Kathmandu.
Day 13: Kathmandu Departure
For the last day, the guide will transfer you to the airport and help you get on board.
- Tibet travel permit and all other necessary permits to Tibet;
- All entrance ticket fees for all tourist sites listed in the itinerary;
- Personal knowledgeable English-speaking Tibetan local tour guide;
- Personal comfortable, clean and safe vehicle with reliable Tibetan local driver; vehicle ranging from 4WD land cruiser to minibus depending on your group size;
- All lodging listed in the itinerary; it’s your decision about the accommodation class: luxury 5-star international hotel, comfortable 4-star hotel, economic 3-star hotel or budget hostel, guesthouse or tent. Please tell us your accommodation preference when submitting the enquiry; we will arrange the best-value hotels for you.
- Domestic flight/train tickets listed in the itinerary;
- All meals listed in the above itinerary;
- Tourist accident/casualty insurance;
- First aid kit;
- International flight to and out of China;
- Chinese visa (Note: we could help you with the Chinese visa application, like providing the invitation letter, presenting the hotel or domestic flight reservation copies, etc that you may need. )
- Domestic flight/train not listed in the itinerary. (We can provide you the domestic flight/train ticket booking service at the BEST discount price; please contact us our travel experts for the details.)
- Meals not specified in the itinerary; usually it costs about USD3-15 per person for one meal in TAR (Tibet Autonomous Region).
- Tips and gratitude to tour guide and driver;
- Personal expenses, like laundry, phone call, snacks, soft drinks (please do the best to avoid the alcoholic beverages during your Tibet trip), optional tour activities, etc.
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