|Fitness Level||: Gentle||Max-Altitude||: 5250m / 17224.20ft|
|Country||: Tibet||Group Size||: 2-12 people|
|Trip Start||: Kathmandu, Nepal||Trip Finish||: Lhasa, Tibet|
|Meals||: Breakfasts at all locations|
|Accommodation||: Standard hotels at all locations|
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Begin your adventure in Kathmandu, the nerve-center of Nepal from where you head straight for the Tibetan border towards Friendship Highway. Breathtaking views and sights of cascading waterfalls, rivers and hill-side villages will keep you company throughout your drive. As you reach the border, you have your lunch and then complete the Nepalese side of immigration and custom formalities. As soon as you cross the Friendship Bridge, you formally step in Tibet! You then take a 30-minute drive from Kodari to Zhangmu where you must pass another checkpoint and drive on a steep winding road From Zhangmu to Nyalam. Overnight in Nyalam.Accomodation: Hotel Snowland
Given the need to acclimatize yourself as you ascend to higher altitude, you saunter around Nyalam in the morning and depart for Lotingri for lunch. You then come across Milarapha Cave and Chamda Hot spring where you can take a plunge and relax yourself. Now you come across two amazing passes: Thong La Pass (5050m/16,568ft) and Lalung La Pass (5082m/16,668 ft) where you can dwell on the breathtaking views and scenes of the high mountains including Mt. Everest (8848m/29,028 ft) and Shishapangma (8,013m/26,289 ft), Jugal Himal, Mt. Makalu. Overnight in Lo Tingri.Accomodation: Snow Lepoard Guest House
Following the bumpy and coarse roads you head towards Rongbuk right after breakfast. Visit the Rongbuk monastery located at the foot of the mighty Everest and is the highest monastery in the world en route. While here, you can find yourself surrounded by the stunning mountainous and enjoy the Himalayan range. The monastery and its large chorten make a great photograph with Everest thrusting its head skyward in the background. Resume your drive towards the Base Camp of Everest.
You can enjoy the stunning view of the Himalayan range and marvel at staggering mountains like Cho Oyu (8,201m/26,906 ft), Shishapangma (8,013m (26,289 ft) and, of course, the mighty Everest also known as Mt. Chomolongma in the Tibetan side. You make approximately a 16km round trip around the Everest Base Camp where you can’t help but feel transcendental as you encounter the highest peak of the world up close towering you. Overnight in Rongbuk.
After breakfast you drive towards Shigatse via Sakya. In Sakya, you visit the Sakya Monastery, which is the ancestral temple of Sakyapa sect of Tibetan Buddhism. The main architectures inside the castle are the Dajing Hall, the Buddhism Hall and the hall where the Sakya archbishop lived. After the visit of the Sakya Monastery whose medieval Mongolian architecture is quite different from temples in Lhasa and Yarlung, you continue your drive to Shigatse, the second biggest city in Tibet. Overnight in Shigaste.
Today is the day you visit the popular Tashilhunpo Monastery in Shigatse which holds both historical and cultural importance for being founded by Gendun Drup, the First Dalai Lama in 1447. Covering 70,000 sq metres, the monastery is essentially a walled town in its own right. Circumnavigating the compound is a one hour kora that takes you into the hills behind the monastery.
You then head towards Gyantse where you visit Pelkor monastery and Gyantse Dzong (Fortress), which is one of the best preserved dzongs in Tibet. Like most Tibetan towns, Gyantse radiates old-world charm when its whitewashed buildings are viewed from on high. In addition to Gyantse, clear views are afforded of the entire fertile pound of the Pelkor Chode Monastery. Founded in 1418, the red-walled Pelkor Chode was once a compound of 15 monasteries that brought together three different orders of Tibetan Buddhism- a rare instance of multidenominational tolerance. Overnight in Gyanste.
Continue your drive from Gyantse towards Lhasa and cross the Karo La (5,010m/16,432 ft) and Kamba La (4794m/15,725 ft) passes en route. Along the way you will pass the mystifying Yamdrok-tsho lake also known as the Turquoise Lake which is one of the three largest sacred lakes of Tibet. Yamdrok-tsho, at almost 4,500 meters is one of the highest altitude lakes in the world with water an incredible hue of turquoise and teal. You might as well pack a picnic for the views from above the lake are stunning. And with almost nobody around, you are sure to experience a very unique and tranquil picnic. Overnight in Lhasa.
Begin your sightseeing right away after breakfast with Potala Palace. The majestic white and red building complex, set against grey/green mountains and blue sky, is an iconic image of the Roof of the World. The magnificent Potala Palace, once the seat of the Tibetan government and the winter residence of the Dalai Lamas, is Lhasa's cardinal landmark. It is a huge treasure house of Tibetan history, religion, culture, and art. The palace is widely known for precious sculptures, Buddha statues, murals, antiques, and religious jewelry housed within. It is the must-see attraction which is included on almost all Tibet tour itineraries. Up next is Drepung Monastery which was built in the 14th century. The monastery is believed to have sheltered around 10,000 monks in the past but as of now there has been quite a declination resulting in only a few hundred. The history, culture, and religious beliefs of the Tibetan people are strongly concentrated and centered in this marvelous monastery. Overnight in Lhasa.
Today you visit the sacred Jokhang Temple followed by Norbulingka Palace and Sera Monastery. Jokhang Temple is the most revered religious structure in Tibet which unravels more deep-seated mysteries of Tibetan Buddhism. The Jokhang also known in Tibetan as the Tsuglhakhang, is. Thick with the smell of yak butter, echoing with the murmur of mantras and bustling with awed pilgrims, the Jokhang is an unrivalled Tibetan experience.
You move on to Norbulingka Palace, the summer palace of the Dalai Lama comprising of houses what is considered to be the largest man-made garden in Tibet. In the seventh lunar month of every year, it is crowded with picnickers for the Shotun festival, when traditional Tibetan opera performances are held. Finally you make your towards Sera Monastery which is a preserved monastery of white-washed walls and golden roofs. The monastery is worth a visit particularly in the morning when the monastery is at its most active, but also between 3pm and 5pm (not Sundays), when debating is usually held in the monastery’s debating courtyard. Feel free to take a leisurely walk through the streets of Barkhor Bazaar in the evening. Take plenty of time to explore the local shops. Overnight in Lhasa.
Your journey to the Roof of the World comes to an end note today. If time permits, you might even indulge in shopping and explore the local market at Barkhor Bazaar. Our cheerful representative will drop you off to the airport. You can either go back to Kathmandu or continue to mainland China on your way home. Safe travels!
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