15 Days Eastern Tibet Culture Discovery Tour
(ETT010) Lhasa- Ningchi- Rawu lake -Kham Tour
Escorted by private guide and vehicle; leave 365 days a year!
Easy - suitable for all level 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.
Heading eastward from Lhasa, tourists can travel to the most beautiful places in Tibet where snow-capped mountains and forest exist side by side and old traditions are kept and remain unchanged in ancient time. And further eastward from Ningchi , you can enter the Kham region where the most traditional tribes of Tibetans called Khampa, esp at the conjunction between Tibet and Sichuan province, where there are grand Buddhist monasteries and the Khampa live in the most traditional way.
At a GlanceDay 1
Arrive in Lhasa & AcclimationDay 2
Lhasa sightseeing - Potola Palace, Jokhang Temple and BarkhorDay 3
Lhasa Sightseeing - Drepung Monastery, Sera MonasteryDay 4
Lhasa - Gandan Monastery - Basomtso Lake (370km)Day 5
Basomtso Lake - Bayi (180km)Day 6
Bayi to Pomi (198km)Day 7
Pomi to Basu (222km)Day 8
Basu to Markam (362km)Day 9
Markham to Litang (276km)Day 10
Litang to Ganzi (300km)Day 11
Ganzi to Manigango (93km)Day 12
Manigango to Derge (112km)Day 13
Derge to Chamdo (253km)Day 14
Chamdo to Bangda AirportDay 15
Fly to Chengdu from Chamdo
Day to Day Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive in Lhasa & Acclimation
Upon your arrival at Lhasa airport or train station, you will be greeted by your Tibetan guide and escorted to your hotel in Lhasa. From airport to Lhasa city, it only takes half an hour of driving along the Lhasa-airport highway. Driving along the Brahmaputra river, you will not only be amazed by the spectacular plateau scenery, but also have a chance to see a great variety of wild birds.
If you take the train to Lhasa, normally you will arrive in the late afternoon or evening, 20 minutes drive will take you to your hotel in Lhasa city. Check in at the hotel, and have a good rest to acclimatize the high altitude.
Stay overnight in Lhasa
Day 2: Lhasa sightseeing - Potola Palace, Jokhang Temple and Barkhor
In the morning, go to visit the famous Potala palace and explore the grandest of this myriad chapels, you will experience its audience halls, the jeweled and Golden burial chortens (stupa Tombs) of past Dalai Lamas, and tremendous number of Buddhist frescoes, thangkas, combinations of mandala, etc.
Tibet Museum is an important window to introduce the glorious culture of Tibet, as a free Museum in Lhasa, you should not miss it.
In the afternoon, pay a visit to the holist temple in Tibet, the Johkang Temple, built during Songtsen Gonpo's reign by princess Wencheng of Tang Dynasty, 647 A.D, and its famous Barkor Kora.(Circling around the religious sites)
Stay overnight in Lhasa
Day 3: Lhasa Sightseeing - Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery
Today, you will visit two important monasteries in Lhasa, the Drepung and the Sera.
Drepung monastery is situated at the foothill of a mountain and was founded by Jamyang Choeje in 1416. It was once home to10000 monks and Ganden podrang in Drepung is famous for it was the government centre during the fifth dalai lama and later moved to the famous potala palace during the fifth dalai lama.
After having lunch, tourists continue to visit the Sera Monastery, which was founded in 1419 by Tsongkapa's disciple Jamchen Choeje. The most dramatic scene is its Buddhist Scriptures debating held in the courtyard mostly around 3:00 - 5:00 in the afternoon.
Stay overnight in Lhasa
Day 4: Lhasa - Gandan Monastery - Basomtso Lake (370km)
Drive about one and half hours to get to Gandan Monastery for a visit. It is the first Gelugpa monastery. After the visit, move onward to Basomtso Lake for 370km on a well paved road, taking 5 hours. Basomtso Lake, 3,500 meters above sea level, originates from Nyching Tanglha Mountain and is a dozen kilometers long. Snow-covered mountains, glaciers and tress are reflected upon the lake’s rippled surface. There are small islands in the middle of the lake with Lamaist temples built upon them.
Stay overnight by the lake
Day 5: Basomtso Lake - Bayi (180km)
Visit Basomtso Lake and enjoy the beautiful views there in the whole morning. And then leave for Bayi Town, the capital of Nyingchi area. Continue driving about 2 hours to get to Bayi. Upon arrival there, visit a huge cypress tree of over thousand years old. During the free-exploring time you can stroll in the modern city in East Tibet.
Stay overnight at Bayi Town
Day 6: Bayi to Pomi (198km)
In the morning, drive from Bayi to Pomi (2750m) along the south Sichuan-Tibet Hwy to Pomi. Formerly known as Tramo, Pomi is a small country capital with well-stocked shops and several hotels and restaurants, making it a logical place to spend the night. In clear weather the surrounding scenery is breathtaking.
Stay overnight at Pomi
Day 7: Pomi to Basu (222km)
Today, continue driving along the south Sichuan-Tibet Hwy to get to Basu Town, formerly known as pema (Baima). It is a pleasant town that makes for a good overnight stop. Explore around Basu, and visit Neru Monastery & Dola Monastery.
Stay overnight at Basu
Day 8: Basu to Markam (362km)
Drive along the south Sichuan-Tibet Hwy again. Today's final destination is Markam (3850m), which is traditionally known as Garthog Dozong, where the Vigilant PSB commonly catches hitchhikers from Sichuan and Yunnan.
At Markam the road splits. The southern branch runs 112km over a pass to Yanjing (salt well) and the border with Yunnan, continuing on the Seqin. Yanjing used to be Tibet's major source of salt, once an essential commodity in these parts.
Stay overnight at Markam
Day 9: Markham to Litang (276km)
Head to Litang (4200) along the highway in the morning. Surrounded by snowcapped peaks, tourists may rest on open grassland. Litang is a pleasant and friendly place to hang out for a couple of days. A horse-racing festival from 1 to 7 August sees the town packed with Tibetan visitors.
Stay overnight at Litang
Day 10: Litang to Ganzi (300km)
Today we will drive off the south Sichuan-Tibet Hwy to the north Sichuan-Tibet Hwy to Ganzi. The noisy market town of Ganzi (also spelled Kandze and Garze) sits in a valley at 3400m, surrounded by the sleeping giants of the Trola (Chola) range, and is a natural place to make a stopover. The gergeous surrounding countryside is peppered with Tibetan villages and sacred monasteries.
Stay overnight at Ganzi
Day 11: Ganzi to Manigango (93km)
The road winds through deep gorges and pretty Tibetan villages before ascending to the wild and craggy scenery of the 4916m Tro-la in the east of Derge. From the pass, the road descends to the crossroads of Manigango.
Yilhun La-tso, a stunning, holy alpine lake bordered by chortens and dozens of rock carvings is about 13 km before reaching Manigango. The lake is backed by the huge glaciers of 6018m Trola peak and it's possible to walk an hour or two up the left side of the lakeshore for glacier views.
Stay overnight at Manigango
Day 12: Manigango to Derge (112km)
Drive west along the north Sichuan-Tibet Hwy for about 112 KM to Derge in the morning. Situated in a valley between the Tibetan border and the Trola (Chola) range to the east, Derge forms the cultural heartland of Kham. The Chinese influence is evident and growing rapidly in the town, while the old town and surrounding villages are very much Tibetan. There are many historically important monasteries in the valleys south of Derge, namely at Pelpung (Chinese: Babang), Dzongsar, pewar (Baiya), Kathok and pelyul (Baiyu).
Stay overnight at Derge
Day 13: Derge to Chamdo (253km)
Continue driving to southwest to Chamdo (3240m), located at the strategic river junction of the Aza-chu and the Ngon-chu. It is a surprisingly pleasant town dominated by the hilltop Jampaling Monastery, below which huddle the Tibetan old town and the Chinese new town. Over 1000km from Lhasa and 1250km from Chengdu, the town is the major transport, administrative and trade centre of the Kham region.
Stay overnight at Chamdo
Day 14: Chamdo to Bangda Airport
Drive about 3 hours to the Bangda Airport, located at 136 km away from Chamdo Town.
Stay overnight at Bangda Airport
Day 15: Fly to Chengdu from Chamdo
Your tour guide and driver will take you to the airport. The flight from Chamdo to Chengdu starts at 09:20am. Tibet Tour Service Ends.
- 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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