If you are interested in the development of Tibetan culture and religion as well as the majestic Mt. Everest, this tour is the best choice for you. After arriving in Lhasa, you will be transferred to Tsedang, the Cradle of Tibetan Civilization, to visit the first palace and the first monastery in Tibet history. Then, set off from Tsedang to EBC via the third and the second largest city in Tibet, along the way, you will visit Yamdrok Lake, Nepali-style Kumbum Stupa, Tashilunpo Monastery, and the principal Sakya Sect monastery - Sakya Monastery. After appreciating the breathtaking view at EBC, you will head back to Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, to visit the grandeur Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Gelug Sect monasteries like Drepung and Sera there.
Itinerary Day by Day
Day 1: Arrive in Tibet, transfer to Tsedang (3100m)
When you arrive in Lhasa, your tour guide will hold a board with your name on it at the exit to welcome you. A private car will transfer you to the reserved hotel in Tsedang and the ride takes about 2 hours. Then, you can take a good rest at hotel to acclimatize to Tibetan plateau environment.
Stay overnight in Tsedang.
Day 2: Tsedang Tour: Yumbulakang Palalce, Trandruk Temple, and Samye Monastery
Today, you will enjoy a full day tour in Tsedang, the cradle of Tibetan civilization. After breakfast, you will visit Yumbulakang Palace, which is the first Palace in Tibet. Since the palace is situated at the top of a hill, you can reach the palace either by walking or a horse ride. Then, go to Tradruk Temple, one of the earliest Buddhist temples in Tibet, to appreciate the valuable Thangka painting that make of precious pearls.
At last, you will visit the famous Samye Monastery. Built in the 7th century, Samye Monastery is the first Buddhism monastery in Tibet. Different from the typical Tibetan monastery, the architecture style of Samye Monastery is combined with three different styles of Tibetan, Hans and Indian.
Stay overnight in Tsedang.
Day 3: Tsetang to Gyantse (3950m) via Yamdrok Lake
Today, you will drive from Lhasa to Gyantse. On the way, you will cross over the Gangbala Pass (4790m) to view Yamdrok Lake and Mt. Nyenchen Khangsar (7191m). Besides, you can also appreciate Korola Glacier on the roadside. At Manak Dam Lake, tourists can hang pray flag at Simila Mountain Pass. Finally, you will arrive at Gyantse, the historically Tibet's third largest city after Lhasa and Shigatse.
Stay overnight in Gyantse.
Day 4: Gyantse to Sakya (4300m)
In the Morning, take the car ride to Shigatse. There, you will visit the famous Tashi Lhunpo Monastery where you can worship the well-preserved largest statue of Jampa (Future Buddha) in the world. As the largest monastery of the Gelug Sect in Rear Tibet, Tashilunpo Monastery is the seat of Tibet's second highest incarnation, the Panchen Lama.
After lunch, you will head to Sakya County to visit the famous Sakya Monastery. Founded in 1073, Sakya Monastery is the principal monastery of the Sakya Sect of Tibetan Buddhism and has an invaluable collection of sacred Buddhist scripts. It consists of two parts, northern and southern monastery. The Northern Monastery has become ruins while the Southern one was built like a fortress, surrounded by a moat.
Stay overnight in Sakya.
Day 5: Sakya to EBC (5200m)
You will cross Tsola Pass (4600m), Gyatsola Pass (5,248m) and Gawula Pass (5180m) on the way to EBC. At Gawula Pass, you can view the top 4 highest peaks in the world, namely, Mt. Everest (8844m), Cho Oyo (8201m), Lhotse (8516m), and Makalu (8463m).
Continue to traverse along the new zigzag road to Everest Base Camp and get closer to Mt. Everest peak. You are lucky enough to catch the sunset of golden Everest peak if time and weather permits at the lodging area.
Tips: Our Tibetan guide will pay close attention to your response to altitude ascent and provide timely help when needed.
Stay overnight at tent or Rongbuk Monastery Guesthouse.
Day 6: EBC to Shigatse (3900m)
You can watch the sunrise over the top of Mt. Everest if weather permits. After having a full view of the magnificent Mt. Everest, you will visit Rongbuk Monastery, the highest monastery in the world before heading back to Shigatse.
Stay overnight in Shigatse.
Day 7: Shigatse to Lhasa (3650m) (B)
Today, you will take car ride back to Lhasa along the Friendship Highway. The whole ride is about 280km and takes 6 hours along the Yarlung Tsangpo River/Bhamaputra River (the longest and largest river in Tibet).
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 8: Lhasa Tour: Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and Barkhor Street (B)
Today, you’ll pay a visit to the famous Potala Palace, the world culture heritage and the winter palace of Dalai Lama. You can explore its audience halls, the jeweled and golden burial chortens (stupa tombs) of past Dalai Lamas, meditation cave of the 33rd Great King of Tibet, and tremendous number of Buddhist frescoes, thangkas, combinations of mandala, etc.
Then you will head to the holiest temple in Tibet, the Jokhang Temple, built during Songtsen Ganpo's reign by Princess Wencheng of Tang dynasty, 647 A.D. Here you can observe sincere pilgrims making prostration in front of Jokhang Temple. While entering inside the temple, you can see the statue of Buddha Sakyamuni at the age of twelve. On the top of Jokhang Temple, you can enjoy the panorama of old Lhasa City and great vista of Potala Palace.
Then you can do the kora with pilgrims and locals by circling the Barkhor Street around the temple, buy some souvenirs, and taste sweet tea and local snacks in local tea house. Later, you can take your family to explore farm products like yak butter in Tromzikhang, the famous farm produce market.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 9: Lhasa Tour: Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery (B)
Today, you will visit two important monasteries in Lhasa, the Drepung and the Sera. Drepung Monastery, the largest monastery in Tibet, was founded by Jamyang Choeje in 1416 and used to be home to more than 10,000 monks. Hiking along the mountain steps, you can see Buddhist painting on the rock face. During Shoton Festival, locals and pilgrims swarm to Drepung Monastery to celebrate the gigantic Thangka Buddha unveiling ceremony on the Gambo Utse Mountain.
After having lunch, you will visit Sera Monastery, which was founded in 1419 by Tsongkapa's disciple Jamchen Choeje. The most interesting thing is to see monks debating in the courtyard at around 3-5 in the afternoon. By yelling at each other, slapping hands and rolling mala, two monks make a pair to debate on philosophical issues. You can also appreciate the delicately-made Mandala, sanding paintings, and massive Buddhist scriptures inside Sera Monastery.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 10: Depart from Lhasa (B)
The guide will pick you up from your hotel, transfer you to Lhasa Gonggar Airport or Lhasa Railway Station, and help you get on board.
- 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;
- 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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