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8 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Overland Tour from Xining by Train

8 Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Overland Tour from Xining by Train

(XTT008) Train from Xining - Lhasa - Gyantse - Shigatse - Everest Base Camp - Gyirong - Kathmandu

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Overview

From Lhasa to Kathmandu, this epic Lhasa to Kathmandu overland tour will take you westwards along the Yarlung Zangbo River from the world’s highest plateau to a low-lying river valley. On the way, you will see the holy Yamdrok Lake and striking Mount Everest, and explore the local culture and history of Shigatse, the second largest city in Tibet after Lhasa. Before this exciting Himalaya adventure, you will also discover the best of Lhasa city, the center of Tibet, followed by the legendary Tibet train journey from Xining. Join in this tour now to reward yourself with a glorious expedition tour of a lifetime.

Day to Day Itinerary

Day 1: Board the Train to Lhasa from Xining

Today is free for you until you board the train to Tibet.

Since all trains to Tibet depart from Xining, please check your train number and departure time carefully before you go.

The railway station is about 2.5 kilometers north to the city center. It is suggested to get to the railway station around 1 hour before departure. You need to present your passport and the Tibet Travel Permit to board the train.

Stay overnight on the train.

Day 2: Travel on the Tibet Train and Arrive in Lhasa

Today, you will enjoy the most beautiful scenery of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway through the Tibet Plateau. Endless land of snows, vast desert, boundless grassland, snow-capped mountains and stunning lakes will continually appear and strongly attract your heart.

After arriving in Lhasa, you will meet our friendly Tibetan guide at Lhasa Railway Station. The guide and the driver will take you to your hotel in downtown Lhasa. You may view the Yarlung Tsangpo River/Brahmaputra River (the Longest and largest river in Tibet) and Lhasa River.

After settling into your hotel, take some time to rest and adjust to the high altitude.

Stay overnight in Lhasa.

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

In the morning, you’ll explore the largest monastery in Tibet - Drepung Monastery, which was once the home to over 10,000 monks. As you walk through the Coqen Hall, your guide will provide detailed explanations of the worldview of Tibetan Buddhism and introduce notable figures in Tibetan Buddhist history.

Next, you’ll visit the renowned Loseling College (or an equivalent), offering a glimpse into the study and life of Tibetan monks. Explore their dormitories to gain insights into the Tibetan monks' daily routines and living conditions.

In the afternoon, you’ll head to Sera Monastery, another of the  ‘great three’ Gelug monasteries of Tibet, to witness the famous Tibetan Monks Debate (15:00 - 17:00, from Monday to Saturday). Your guide will intricately explain how Tibetan monks engage in these debates to acquire knowledge and advance in their academic degrees.

Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 4: Lhasa Tour - Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and Barkhor Street (B)

After breakfast, your first stop is the Potala Palace, where you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Lhasa Old Town. Discover the lives and stories of the Dalai Lamas through history within the palace, and the extraordinary treasures it holds. The most valuable collections of Potala Palace are the gilded burial stupas of former Dalai Lamas and the meditation cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet.

After touring the Potala Palace, you will visit Longwangtan Park at the foot of the Potala Palace. Here, you can appreciate the majestic Potala Palace from a different perspective and engage in local Tibetan folk activities.

In the afternoon, you will head to the heart of Tibetan religion - the Jokhang Temple. 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.

Next, follow your guide to one of the liveliest indoor Tibetan tea houses in Lhasa. Sip traditional Tibetan sweet tea alongside local Tibetans as your guide shares insights into Tibetan social dynamics and daily life.

Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 5: Lhasa to Shigatse via Gyantse 360 km (B,L)

In the morning, start the overland journey from Lhasa to Shigatse, which includes visits to Tibet's most beautiful lake, glacier, and charming Tibetan villages.

First, drive over the Gampala Pass (4790 m) to catch a glimpse of Yamdrok-tso (4400m). The Yamdrok 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. Continue to explore the lakeshore from various viewpoints, and at the end of the lake, you could visit a local family in the village and have lunch with the locals.

Next, you will pass and enjoy the Korola Glacier on the roadside. It is the largest glacier in Tibet. As you see the ice tongue of the glacier climb the entire hillside, you will feel the magical power of nature.

Then, continue your journey to Gyantse. On the way, you will stop at Simila Mountain Pass, where you can hang prayer flags to pray for world peace and the health of your family.

After arriving in Gyantse, you can spend some time taking photos of the ancient city of Gyantse. From Gyantse to Shigatse, you will pass by green (in summer) and golden (in autumn) Tibetan barley fields and countless farms.

Finally, we will arrive in Shigatse, the second-largest city in Tibet. After checking in to the hotel, you can take a good rest and prepare for the next day’s trip to Mount Everest.

Stay overnight in Shigatse.

Day 6: Shigatse to Everset Base Camp (5200m) (B)

After breakfast, you will head directly to Mount Everest.

First, you will pass Gyatsola Pass (5280m). At Gyatsola Pass viewpoint, you’ll catch your first glimpse of Mount Everest. Hidden behind the mountain range, the Everest resembles a budding lotus flower, a captivating sight along the roadside.

Shortly after we enter Mount Everest National Nature Reserve, you will enjoy the panoramic view of the Himalayas at Gawula Pass (5198m). At this viewpoint, you will marvel at the majestic lineup of the five highest peaks in the Himalayas, including Everest at the forefront. This is your second glimpse of Everest.

Then we drive along the new zigzag road to Everest Base Camp (5200m). As you get close to the base camp, the majestic Everest gradually unfolds before you, drawing nearer with each winding turn. This marks your third view of Everest.

Upon reaching Everest Base Camp, the colossal white pyramid peak of Mount Everest stands towering before you. As the day transitions to dusk, witness the golden hues of the sun casting a warm glow on Everest's northern face—your fourth view.

As night falls, the sparkling Milky Way and the snow-white peak of Mount Everest reveal your fifth and final encounter with Everest.

Stay overnight at Everest Base Camp or in the local village near EBC if the EBC tent hotels are closed during the winter season.

Insider Tips:
1. The visibility of Everest is subject to weather conditions and cannot be guaranteed.

2. During the winter season, typically from November to March, the tent hotels at Everest Base Camp close. Therefore, if you’re traveling in winter, your accommodation options are limited to the village near EBC.

Day 7: Everest Base Camp to Gyirong Border (B)

Today, you will reach Gyirong Border, witnessing the breathtaking landscapes changing from 5200 meters to 2800 meters above sea level.

In the morning, before departing from the base camp, you will visit Rongbuk Monastery, the world’s highest monastery, where nuns and monks live together at 5154 meters above sea level.

Then, you will cross the Himalayas and take a drive to Gyirong at the Sino-Nepal border. Across the 380-kilometer journey, marvel at the evolving scenery - from snow-capped peaks towering over 5000 meters to the lush forests and canyon vistas at around 2800 meters above sea level.

As you pass by Mt. Shishabangma (8027 meters), one of the world’s highest mountains over 8000 meters, you can enjoy a close view of the three main peaks of Shigabangma, as well as the golden glow of Pelku Tso Lake beneath the peaks.

Afterward, the altitude drops dramatically. You’ll be mesmerized by forests, waterfalls, and bottomless canyons as you enter the edge of the Himalayas.

When you arrive in Gyirong Valley, what you will see is the dense forest and the snowy peaks above the forests. In Gyirong town, you can breathe in the abundant oxygen.

We will say goodbye to Tibet here.

Stay overnight in Gyirong.

Day 8: Gyirong Border to Kathmandu (B)

After breakfast, it’s time to say goodbye to your Tibetan guide and driver as our Tibet tour service ends at the Gyirong border.

After crossing the border, you can choose our border transfer service to your hotel in Kathmandu (Optional: 60 USD per person). Alternatively, you can take the public bus from the border to downtown Kathmandu and then take a taxi to your hotel from the downtown bus station.

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.)
  • Nepal visa (30 USD in cash for a 15-day Nepal visa at the Gyirong border.);
  • 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.)
  • Border transfer service from Gyirong border to your hotel in Kathmandu (60 USD per person);
  • 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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