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8 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Tour in Shoton Festival

8 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Tour in Shoton Festival

(TFT004) Lhasa - Gyantse - Shigatse - Everest Base Camp - Kathmandu


This overland tour starts at Lhasa and ends at Kathmandu with a visit to the Everest Base Camp. It covers Lhasa, Gyantse, Shigatse and Rongbuk. When staying in Lhasa, besides visiting the popular landmarks like Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple, we will celebrate the Shoton Festival by watching the Buddha painting unfolding ceremony at Drepung Monastery and enjoying the performances of Tibetan opera at Norbulingka Park.

After celebrating the joyous festival and having a comprehensive understanding of Tibetan culture, tradition and religion, we will go on to visit the holy Yamdrok Lake, the Pelkor and the Tashi Lhunpo Monastery, and the Mt. Everest before heading to Kathmandu. 

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 - Tingri - 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 Rongbuk monastery guest house.

Day 7: EBC - 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 close 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 8: Gyirong Border - Kathmandu

Our Tibetan guide will assist you to exit China via Gyirong border. The tour service ends.

However, to ensure hassle-free travel to Kathmandu, we offer easy transfer service. And to guarantee the comfortable transfer service, our staff in Kathmandu only use the quality and roomy jeeps for the transfer. Each jeep can accommodate up to 5 passengers. However, since such tourist-friendly service is not included in the tour package in Tibet, each client may expect to pay 60USD for the transfer.

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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