12 Days Everest Exploration Tour from Tibet to Bhutan
(TB--12) Lhasa - Shigatse - EBC - Gyirong - Kathmandu - Paro - Thimpu - Punakha - Paro
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.
Combining the most popular tours in both Tibet and Bhutan, this 12-day tour takes you for an exhilarating exploration from Lhasa to EBC and further travels across the giant Himalayas to Kathmandu via Gyirong border. By flight, you land in Paro and are about to embrace picturesque Bhutanese Dzongs and get the first-hand experience of superb eco-system in this carbon negative country and unique national pride and masterful handicraft skills shared by hospitable local Bhutanese.
At a GlanceDay 1
Arrive in LhasaDay 2
Lhasa Tour - Potala Palace, Johkang Temple, and Barkhor Street (B, D)Day 3
Lhasa Tour - Drepung and Sera Monastery (B)Day 4
Lhasa (3650m) to Shigatse(3900m) via Gyantse (B)Day 5
Shigatse (3900m) to EBC (5200m) via Tingri (B)Day 6
EBC to Gyirong Border 370kmDay 7
Gyirong border to Kathmandu (B)Day 8
Fly from Kathmandu to Paro and Get Transferred to Thimpu (2300m) (2hrs’ drive)Day 9
Sightseeing in Thimpu and Travel to Punakha (1250m) (3-4hrs’ drive)Day 10
Sightseeing in Punakha Dzong and Drive back to Paro (1460m) (4 hrs’ drive)Day 11
Day Trek to Taksang Lhakhang (Tinger’s Nest)Day 12
Departure from Paro
Day to Day Itinerary
Day 1: Arrive in Lhasa
When you arrive in Lhasa either by train or flight, your guide will greet you and escort you to your hotel with clean and comfortable tour van. Never miss the chance to capture the Yarlung Tsangpo River - the Longest and largest river in Tibet and Lhasa River on their way to Lhasa.
For the new-comers of Tibet, having a good sleep in your hotel is a good option. It helps you get acclimatized to Tibetan plateau quickly. Do not rush to visit attractions inside Lhasa city. Your guide will give you a briefing about tomorrow’s tour arrangement.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 2: Lhasa Tour - Potala Palace, Johkang Temple, and Barkhor Street (B, D)
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; The welcome dinner will also be arranged accordingly;
With time permitting, you may go with your 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 3: Lhasa Tour - Drepung and Sera Monastery (B)
In the morning, you are going to visit Drepung monastery which is one of the “great three” Gelug monasteries of Tibet, founded in 1416 by Jamyang choge, one of the Tsongkhapa’s main disciples. You can visit the biggest monastery kitchen inside the monastery and enjoy Buddhist Sculpture Carving workshop near Drepung.
In the Afternoon, Tourists will visit Sera Monastery which is another one of the “great three” Gelug monasteries of Tibet. The hot attraction is the Monks debate at around 3 - 5 in the afternoon. In addition, you can tour the Tibetan religious scripture printing house; inside the monastery, you can see three sand Mandalas and colorful Rock Painting of Buddha.
Stay overnight in Lhasa
Day 4: Lhasa (3650m) to Shigatse(3900m) via Gyantse (B)
In the morning, drive from Lhasa to Shigatse. On the way, drive over the Gampala pass (4790 m), 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 5: Shigatse (3900m) to EBC (5200m) via Tingri (B)
In the morning, you will visit the home of Panchan Lama - Tashilunpo Monastery. Then, leave Shigatse after getting your Alien’s travel permit, and then journey 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 gazt at the Mt. Everest peak. The sunset of golden Everest peak if time and weather permits at the lodging area.
Stay overnight at Rongbuk monastery guest house.
Day 6: 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 Monastery - 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 the breathtaking vista of Mt. Shishapangma and the Pekutso Lake. After passing the Ghungtang Lhamo(5236M), we will arrive in Kyirong in the late afternoon.
Stay overnight in the guesthouse in Kyirong
Day 7: Gyirong border to Kathmandu (B)
Tour Guide will assist you to exit China via Gyirong border. After you go through the customs and enter Nepal, our staff on the Nepal's side will transfer you to your hotel in Kathmandu. The initial 10km’s drive after crossing Sino-Nepal border can be exceedingly bumpy and treacherous. Be prepared for the adrenaline-rushed ride. However, no worries! Our experienced Nepali drivers will ensure your travel safety. Beside, please prepare at least 25USD for Nepali on Arrival Visa (15 days).
Stay overnight in Kathmandu
Day 8: Fly from Kathmandu to Paro and Get Transferred to Thimpu (2300m) (2hrs’ drive)
Fly to Paro. Welcome to Bhutan, the land of the “Thunder Dragon”. Do choose the left window seat for the stunning vista of majestic Himalayas, esp. the lofty Mt. Jumolhari and Jichu Drake Peaks during your flight. However, they are only a small appetizer. Upon your arrival in Paro international airport, your Bhutan guide and driver will be expecting you and give you a pleasing ride to your hotel.
After a brief rest at your hotel, in the afternoon, with time permitting, we may visit the Kyichu Lhakhang (also known as Kyerchu Temple), the oldest and most beautiful temple in Bhutan. Surrounded by the fields, flowers, and hills, Kyichu Lhakhang is home to the eight-year-old Buddha statue of Sakyamuni, historic relics, elaborate paintings, and numerous Buddhist scriptures, etc. And Later explore the Paro Rinpung Dzong. Located at the suburb of Paro City, Rinpung Dzong is a fortress built in the 17th Century to protect Paro valley, which offers you picturesque scenery and a sense of inner peace.
In the evening, we will head to Thimphu, the capital of Bhutan and spend the night there.
Stay overnight in Thimphu
Day 9: Sightseeing in Thimpu and Travel to Punakha (1250m) (3-4hrs’ drive)
As the capital city of Bhutan, Thimpu is devoid of stereotyped skyscrapers and huge traffic. Instead, surrounding by rolling mountains, Thimpu is known for its picturesque Bhutan dzong, fresh air, and loveable local people. Today’s tour begins with a visit to Late King's Memorial Chorten, and explore the National Library, Folk Heritage Museum and Hand-made Paper Factory, and the School of Arts and Crafts, where you will have a panoramic view of Bhutan history and learn more of textile and the handicraft making in the most traditional way.
Of course, the highlight comes as we tour the Tashichho Dzong (Thimpu Dzong), the most beautiful Bhutan dzong as well as the headquarters of the Bhutan government. Later, we will travel northeast to Punakha, the former capital of Bhutan. On the way, we will stop at scenic Dochu La Pass (3,100m) for a refreshing tea. The perfect vantage point brings you the unobstructed vista of Great Himalayas.
After lunch at Wangduephodrang (1,350m), we keep driving to Punakha.
Stay overnight in Punakha
Day 10: Sightseeing in Punakha Dzong and Drive back to Paro (1460m) (4 hrs’ drive)
Get up in the morning to visit Punakha Dzong, widely believed to be the most beautiful Bhutanese Dzong, built at the confluence of Pho Chhu and Mo Chhu Rivers. Never miss the Punakha festival around mid-Feb if you come at the right time.
After touring Punakha, we are about to drive back to Paro. In the afternoon, we head to the National Museum of Bhutan, which looks like a round watchtower. You can trace back to the ancient Bhutan history and explore the diverse wild lives as well as splendid local culture and arts. Then we drive to visit Drukgyel Dzong, where you can enjoy the enchanting village lying at its foot.
Stay overnight in Paro
Day 11: Day Trek to Taksang Lhakhang (Tinger’s Nest)
Getting up in the fresh morning, we’ll start today’s trek to Taktshang Goemba (also known as Tiger's Nest). Standing on the cliff of Paro Valley, Taktshang Goemba (3120 meters) is the landmark of Paro as well as the holiest temple in Bhutan. It’s said that Guru Padmasambhava (also known as Guru Rinpoche) had flied here on the back of a tigress and meditated in the caves on the cliffside for three months. From here, you can catch a panoramic view of Paro Valley.
After lunch, you may opt for a stone bath or enjoy free exploration nearby.
Stay overnight in Paro
Day 12: Departure from Paro
Today, our tour guide will transfer you to Paro International Airport for your next destination. Tour service ends.
(Optional: To facilitate your Himalayan journey, you may also choose to visit Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan together, we are ready to free hassle-free service for you.)
What is Included
- Tibet travel permit and all other necessary permits for travel within Tibet
- Accommodation - Twin share (tourist standard hotel "A" grade wherever available)
- All applicable transfers & sightseeing as mentioned in the itinerary
- All Sightseeing entry fee for all tourist sites listed in the itinerary
- All meals in Bhutan, breakfast listed in the itineraries in Tibet
- English speaking local interpreter/guide
- Tourist accident/casualty insurance in Tibet
- First aid kit
What is not Included
- Bhutan Visa Fee
- International flight to and out of Tibet and Bhutan
- 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.)
- Personal expenses such as drinks, postage, and laundry, etc.
- Travel insurance in Bhutan
- Meals not specified in the itinerary; usually it costs about USD3-15 per person for one meal in TAR (Tibet Autonomous Region).
- Emergency evacuation
- Tips and gratuities
- Costs arising from unforeseen events
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