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24 Days Tibet and Southern Xinjiang Adventure

24 Days Tibet and Southern Xinjiang Adventure

(TSRT03) Lhasa - Tsedang - Shigatse - Sakya - Mt. Everest - Xian - Dunhuang - Turpan - Korla - Mingfeng - Hetian - Kashgar - Urumqi


After several days of exploring the Holy City Lhasa, Tsedang, Shigatse and Mt. Everest, you will fly to Xian to start your Silk Road discovery tour taking in world famous cities and tourist sites along the silk road - a historical network of interlinking trade routes across the Afro-Eurasian landmass that connected East, South, and Western Asia with the Mediterranean and European world, as well as parts of North and East Africa.

It will be an amazing experience with different cultures and natural beauties.

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Lhasa

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 amazed by the spectacular plateau scenery. 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 into hotel, have a good rest to acclimatize the high altitude.

Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 2: Lhasa Sightseeing - Potola Palace, Tibet Museum, Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street (B)

In the morning, visit the famous Potala palace and explore the grandest of this myriad chapel. You will appreciate 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, and as a free Museum in Lhasa, you should not miss.

In the afternoon, visit 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.

Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 3: Lhasa Sightseeing - Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery (B)

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 the home to 10000 monks and Ganden podrang in Drepung is famous as it was the government centre and later moved to the famous Potala palace during the fifth dalai lama.

After having lunch, visit the Sera Monastery, which was founded in 1419 by Tsongkapa's disciple Jamchen Choeje. The most attractive is its Buddhist Scriptures debating held in the courtyard mostly around 3 - 5 in the afternoon.

Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 4: Lhasa to Tsedang (155km) and visit Samye Monastery (B)

Drive about 4 hours to Tsedang in the morning, which is known as the capital of the ancient Yarlung Kingdom. En-route, take a ferry accorss Yarlung Zangpo River and visit Samye Monastery. The Samye Monastery is the first temple to be built in Tibet and the first complete with the three Buddhist jewels of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. With these unique features, this splendid temple has become an attraction for visitors from near and far.

Stay overnight in Tsedang.

Day 5: Tsedang Day Tour - Yambulakhang Palace and Trundruk Monastery (B)

Drive 7km from Tsedang to visit Yambulakhang Palace, the first building of Tibet which is built in 2nd century as the palace for the first Tibetan Kings. It sites on a summit of a small hill on the east bank of the Yarlung River. Then drive to see the burial tombs of Tibetan Kings.

We also pay a visit to Trundruk Monastery in the afternoon, which is said to be built by King Songtsan Gampo and later became the winter palace of the King and Princess Wencheng in Tsedang.

Stay overnight in Tsedan.

Day 6: Drive across Yamdrok-Tso Lake to Gyantse (400km,6 hours) (B)

Drive across Kambala Pass to the dazzlingly turquoise green Yamdrok-Tso Lake, one of the three great holy lakes in Tibet. You will visit Samding Monastery located at the peninsula in the south of the Yamdrok. The abbess of the monastery is only incarnated female living Buddha in Tibet.

After having an eyeful of the stunning scenery, move on to Gyantse, one of Tibet's most traditional towns. En route you will also enjoy spectacular vistas of Karo-la Glacier roadside at 4960m.

Another important attraction for today is Kubum monastery in Gyantse. The Kubum monastery has a 35m-high chorten (stupa) with its white layers trimmed with decorative stripes and its crown-like golden dome.

Stay overnight in Gyantse .

Day 7: Gyantse to Sakya via Shigatse (B)

Drive from Gyantse to Shigatse in the morning. Visit Shalu monastery en-route.

Then drive to the Sakya county where you can visit the famous Sakya monastery. The most interesting thing in Sakya sect is that the sect does not believe in reincarnation and the head of Sakya sect will wear white cassock and also marry and have children.

Then forwards to world highest pass Gyatso-la pass with 5200 m above sea level and take a good rest in Sakya.

Stay overnight in Sakya County.

Day 8: Sakya to Rongbuk Monastery (B)

There is about 5 hours driving from Sakya to Rongpuk. The road is under construction. From Tingri to E.B.C with the very rough road, pass the wild grassland, cross the rapids river and high mountains.

If it is in clear weather, you can have a glimpse of 4 mountains which are 8000m high or more, that is, Mt. Lhotse (8516m), Mt. Everest (8848m), Mt. Qowowuyag (8201m) and Mt Mayalu (8463m).

Stay overnight at Rongphu Monastery Tent or Guest House.

Day 9: Rongphu Monastery to Everest Base Camp and back to Shigatse (B)

Early in the morning to see the sunrise from Rongphu then to view Mt. Everest. It is fabulous and splendid.

After walking, arrive the place to get on the local bus then use half of an hour to arrive at Everest Base camp (Or you also can trekking to Base Camp around 1.5-2 hours one way. It's more interesting and much warmer, but hard to breath). Hike up to the top of the photo point to take pictures of the splendid Mt. Everest.

Then in the afternoon go down from EBC and back to Shigatse.

Stay overnight in Shigatse.

Day 10: Shigatse to Lhasa (B)

Before spending about 4 hours to drive back to Lhasa from Shigatse, visit the largest Monastery in west Tibet, the Tashilunpo monastery which is one of the six great Gelukpa institutions and was founded in 1447 by a disciple of Tsongkapa, containing the world's largest gilded copper image(26m high) of future god Jampa.

Drive along the Friend-ship Highway back to Lhasa.

Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 11: Take a flight to Xian from Lhasa (B)

The whole morning is free for you. After having lunch, you will be transferred to Lhasa Gonggar Airport to take a flight to Xian.

Upon your arrival in Xian, your local tour guide will pick you up at the airport and escort you to your hotel.

Stay overnight in Xian.

Day 12: Xian Day Tour (B)

You will visit the Eighth Wonder of the World, the Terracotta Warriors and Horses Museum. You will be attracted by the life-sized warrior figures, horses and different ancient weapons, each of which have distinct facial expressions and positions.

The rest for today, you will also visit the Big Wild Goose Pagoda and Ancient City Wall.

Stay overnight in Xian.

Day 13: Take a flight to Dunhuang from Xian (B)

Visit Muslim Street or Shaanxi provincial Museum in the morning, and then take a flight to Dunhuang in the afternoon.

Upon arrival in Dunhuang, you will be transferred to your hotel. The rest of the day is at leisure.

Stay overnight in Dunhuang.

Day 14: Dunhuang Day Tour (B)

Your tour guide and drive will pick you up at the train station and then drive you to visit Mogao Grottoes, which is considered as the great treasure house of Buddhist arts in existence.

In the afternoon, visit Crescent Spring and Singing Sand Dune, where you can see the desert scenery and ride the camel in the desert.

Stay overnight in Dunhuang.

Day 15: Dunhuang Day Tour and stay overnight Train to Turpan (B)

Go out of Dunhuang to see Yumenguan Pass, The Great Wall of the Han Dynasty, and Desert Discovery at Yadan Landform Park.

In the afternoon, go to Liuyuan(2 hours driving), where you can take an overnight train from Dunhuang to Turpan (about 9 hours).

Stay overnight in the train.

Day 16: Turpan Day Tour (B)

Upon arrival, take a short break and then visit Suleiman Minaret, the Karez Wells, the Ruins of the Ancient City of Jiaohe, and local vineyard.

Stay overnight in Turpan.

Day 17: Turpan to Korla (B)

Drive for about 6 hours to Korla, visit the Tiemen Pass - the most important pass in the ancient silk road, and Bositeng Lake. It is the largest fresh water lake in China. Bulrushes intersperse in large scale in the lake. It presents a rare water-town-like beautiful scenery in such dry inland areas.

Stay overnight in Korla.

Day 18: Korla to Minfeng (B)

Continue driving for about 12 hours along the Southern Silk Road crossing the Taklamakan Desert to Minfeng. The long drive won't be boring for you could feast on the beautiful scenery of sand dunes when passing through the Taklamakan Desert en route.

Stay overnight in Minfeng.

Day 19: Minfeng–Hetian (B)

Drive for about 6.5 hours to Hetian. You could visit a local bazaar and see the unique minority people's costume in Yutian city on the way to Hetian. You could also pay a visit to the Silk Village in Hetian, see a hundred years' old walnut tree and see how silks, jade, carpets and knives are produced.

Stay overnight in Hetian.

Day 20: Hetian - Yarkand (B)

Drive for about 5.5 hours to Yarkand via Yecheng, the beginning of Xinjiang-Tibet Road. Visit Amannishahan Tomb, an Islamic style tomb that was established to commemorate the concubine of the Yarkant King. Her most significant contribution is the collection of the Twelve Muqam known as the "mother of Uygur music."

Stay overnight in Yarkand.

Day 21: Yarkand to Kashgar (B)

Driver for about 4 hours to Kashgar. Visit the famed Id Kah Mosque, the Old Street and the grand Abakh Khoja. The Id Kah Mosque, initially built in 1442 during the Ming Dynasty, is a group of ancient Islamic buildings of strong ethnic folklore and Islamic flavor. The Old Street is the old town of Kashgar City, consisting of hundreds of streets and lanes as well as thousands of old houses. The Abakh Khoja Tomb is a masterpiece of the old Uygur architecture. Nestled some five kilometers (about 3 miles) northeast to the city center, it is the family graveyard of the powerful ruler, Abakh Khoja, in 17th century.

Stay overnight in Kashgar.

Day 22: Kashgar to Urumqi (B)

In the morning, you will visit the famous Kashgar Bazaar. Bazaar refers to large market in Uygur language. As an important station along the ancient Silk Road, Kashgar gathers many large bazaars. In the bustling bazaar, you will see all kinds of goods, including daily necessities, vegetable, fruits, handicrafts and local specialties.

Then a family visit is specially arranged for you to learn more about the hospitable Uygur people and their unique custom. You will then be transferred to Urumqi by air. The local guide will pick you up at the airport and help you check in the hotel.

Stay overnight in Urumqi.

Day 23: Urumqi Day Tour (B)

Take a 4 hours' driving for 120km northeast to visit the holy Heavenly Lake (Tianchi), one of the most famous alpine lakes in the world. Located in the middle of the Bogda Peak, the crescent-shaped lake is about 2,000 meters (6562 feet) above the sea level. You will see the enthralling scenery of the crystal lake surrounded by snow- capped mountains and lush pine forests, reflecting the shadows of the blue sky and the white clouds.

After the tour, you will be transferred back to downtown. You will then have chance to take a short visit to Erdaoqiao Grand Bazaar, which is believed to be the largest outdoor market in town.

Stay overnight in Urumqi.

Day 24: Departure from Urumqi (B)

You will be transferred to the airport for your return flight.

Service Guide

Service Included:

  • 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;

Service Excluded:

  • 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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