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9 Days Lhasa to Everest Base Camp Tour in Shoton Festival

9 Days Lhasa to Everest Base Camp Tour in Shoton Festival

(TFT005) Lhasa - Gyantse - Shigatse - Everest Base Camp - Shigatse - Lhasa

Overview

As one of the most important festivals in Tibet, Shoton Festival starts with the Buddha painting (thangka) unveiling ceremony at Drepung Monastery, when the 500-square-meter painting of Sakyamuni is gradually unfolded around 8 o’clock on the hillside back of the monastery, hundreds of white and yellow scarves known as hadas are hurled on the tankgka by Tibetans for the blessing. This giant thangka will be exhibited for 2 hours only and you can only see it again next year. Then the celebration moves to Sera Monastery and Norbulingka.

We will continue to visit the prosperous Buddhism city Shigatse via Yamdrok Lake, and then arrive at the Rongphuk Monastery and Mt. Everest Base Camp from where the view of the great north face of Mount Everest is the most spectacular of all.

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Lhasa

Arrive at Lhasa airport or train station where you will be picked up by our local guide and driver then transfer you to hotel. Main highlights on the way to Lhasa, you will see the biggest river in Tibet called Yarlung Tsangpo or Barmaputra in Indian language, the unique architectural village houses of Tibetan farmers and the first glance of Potala Palace.

Free sightseeing or take a rest in your room in late afternoon to acclimatize. Your guide will give you more detail advice on acclimatization.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Note: If your arrive in Lhasa by train, then you don’t have the chance to see the river view and Tibetan village houses because the train station is next to the city.

Day 2: Sightseeing in Lhasa: the Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street

In the morning your guide and driver will meet you at hotel lobby and drive you to the Potala Palace, the land mark of Tibet, the first construction ever built in Lhasa by the most well known and outstanding Tibetan king Tsongtsen Gambo in seventh century as his residence and central government official. And in seventeenth century the fifth Dalai Lama began to extend it into current style. It is listed into the UNESCO’s World Heritage in December 1994. More than three hours visiting outside and inside the palace, you will learn all detailed history about the palace by your guide.

After marvelous visiting and climbing hundreds of stairs there, your driver will pick you up at the exit of Potala Palace and transfer you to local restaurant near by Jokhang Temple, you will feel bit exhausted and tired but no matter you can have good relax during the lunch time and ask for your guide to order a glass of Ginger Lemon Tea+honey that will give you more energy and feel fresh again.

After lunch break, your guide will lead you to Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street by walk to explore the culture center of Tibet, the heart of Tibetan Buddhism and the main destination of the pilgrims coming from all over the Tibetan territories and the Barkhor Ancient Street with local bazaar and art workshops.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 3: Sightseeing in Lhasa: Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery/ Thangka Painting Display (Shoton Festival)

Today you have a great opportunity to visit the opening ceremony of the most important annual festival in Lhasa called “Shoton” which means "Yogurt Banquet" in Tibetan. The opening ceremony begins from Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery, the two largest monasteries in Lhasa.

In the very early morning your guide and driver will pick you up and drive to Drepung Monastery to attend the ceremony. With thousands of local pilgrims and tourists, you will luckily see one of the largest embroidered Thangka/scroll painting of Buddha in Tibet. Hundreds of monks and volunteers transfer it to a hillside not far from the monastery and display it on a huge wall, then the monks perform a special religious ritual to open the ceremony, the pilgrims from nomadic area offer fresh Yak Yogurt to the monks and everyone receives blessings from main master of monastery.

In the afternoon you will be driven to Sera Monastery, the second largest monastery to visit another beautiful Grand Thangka and religious ceremony. It’s a very busy day for you but very worth.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 4: Sightseeing in Lhasa: Norbulinka/ Summer Palace and Tibetan Opera (Shoton Festival)

Today you will spend the whole day in Norbulinka to see how peopleare enjoy their festival, you will have a great chance to watch the performance of traditional Tibetan opera, join the very friendly local people, their hospitality towards you makes you feel like very close friends, they will serve you free cookies, Yak meat or yogurt sometimes and plenty of their homemade barley beer if you like it.

You will also visit the main residence of the successive Dalai Lamas’ personal residences, guest interview room, meeting rooms, the wall of paintings that tells the general history of Tibet and ancient civilization as well as its unique architectural design and wooden carves.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 5: Lhasa- Gyantse - Shigatse (360km)

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 prayer flags 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 views of Gyangtse Fortress.

After one and a half hours' driving, we arrive in Shigatse, which is the second largest city in Tibet. In Shigatse, we may visit the traditional Barley Mill and view the landscape of Barley Field (in summer).

Stay overnight in Shigatse

Day 6: Shigatse - Everest Base Camp (350km)

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 drive to Lhatse, 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, you 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 and see the sunset of golden Everest peak if time and weather permits at the lodging area.

Stay overnight at tent or Rongphuk monastery guest house

Day 7: EBC - Shigatse

In the morning, you can see the sunrise of Everest Peak if weather permits at the lodging area. Then we will visit the Rongphuk Monastery - the unique highest monastery with nuns and monks living together. Finally, we will drive back to Shigatse.

Stay overnight in Shigatse

Day 8: Shigatse - Lhasa (350km)

Today, we will drive back to Lhasa by following Yalong Valley. You can stand on the viewing platform and view the vast Yalong River Bed. Finally the guide will transfer you back to your hotel in Lhasa.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 9: Depart from Lhasa

Depart to your next destination. Your guide and driver will transfer you to airport or railway station and help you to get the boarding pass. Say good bye to Tibet!

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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