20 Days Big Loop Northern Tibet Adventure with Mount Kailash

20 Days Big Loop Northern Tibet Adventure with Mount Kailash

20 Days You Choose Departure!
Lhasa-Everest-Saga-Manasarovar Lake-Kailash-Darchen-GugeKingdom-Tsada-Shiquan River-Gerze-Namtso-Lhasa
Potala Palace, Johkang Temple, Barkhor Street, Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery, Yamdrok Lake, Pelchor Monastery, Tashi Lhunpo Monastery,Sakya Monastery, Everest Base Camp, Peikutso Lake, Mount Kailash Trekking, Pangongtso Lake, Dangchung Monastery, Namtso Lake
Trip Day By Day
Day 1-3 Lhasa city tour
Day 4-5 Lhasa – Gyantse - Shigatse - Tingri
Day 6-8 Tingri - Everest Base Camp - Darchen
Day 9-11 Mt. Kailash trekking
Day 12-13 Darchen - Shiquanhe River
Day 14-15 Shiquanhe - Shiquanhe - Gerze
Day 16-18 Gerze - Namtso Lake
Day 19-20 Namtso - Lhasa
Day by day itinerary

Day 1: Arrival upon Lhasa

Highlights: Arrival & Pick-up & Acclimatization

Schedule today: Arrival at Lhasa at airport or train station, our guide and driver will pick you up and transfer you to hotel for acclimatization; you can have your free time hanging out at this holy city to get the first impression of Tibet

Warm Tibetan Style Pickup Service Warm Tibetan Style Pickup Service
Warm Tibetan Style Pickup Service Warm Tibetan Style Pickup Service

Day 2: Lhasa city tour

Highlights: Potala Palace, Johkang Temple,Barkhor Street

Schedule today: In the morning, visit the symbol or landmark of Lhasa - Potala Palace (video), the successive Dalai Lama’s winter residence since the 7th Century by the 33rd great king of Tibet. In the afternoon, visit the center of Tibetan Buddhism - Johkang Temple (video), where you will come across lots of devoted pilgrimages coming from every corner of Tibet. Both sites are under the list of the world cultural heritages by the UNESCO. Afterwards, free time for you to wander through the Barkhor Street, the busiest street in old Lhasa quarter.

Potala Palace Johkang Temple
Potala Palace Johkang Temple

Day 3: Lhasa city tour

Highlights: Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery

Schedule today: In the morning, we will visit Drepung Monastery which is the biggest Tibetan Buddhism College with the biggest number of monks in Tibet. The monastery used to be the winter residence of the Dalai Lama before the 5th Dalai Lama moved his residency to the Potala Palace. And in the afternoon, we will visit another influential Gelugpa Monastery - Sera Monastery (video), where you can see the largest scale of sutra debating (video) among monks is famous all across Tibet.

Drepung Monastery Sera Monastery
Drepung Monastery Sera Monastery

Day 4: Lhasa - Gyantse - Shigatse

Highlights: Yamdrok Lake, Pelchor Monastery

Schedule today: In the morning, drive to the historic town of Gyantse via Yamdrok Lake (video), according to local mythology, Yamdrok Lake is the transformation of a goddess, on the Gangbala Pass, you will have a clear picture of this Tibetan holy lake in turquoise, in distance you can also see the snowcapped Summit of Ninjingkangsang. In Gyantse (video) , you will find the largest stupa in Tibet - Kumpa Stupa (Ten-thousand stupa), just next to the Stupa is the Pelchor Monastery (video). Another important site in Gyantse is Dzong Castle which once was a battle field where Tibetan fought against British invasion. Then drive to Shigatse.

Yamdrok Lake Pelchor Monastery
Yamdrok Lake Pelchor Monastery

Day 5: Shigatse - Sakya - Tingri

Highlights: Tashi Lhunpo Monastery,Sakya Monastery

Schedule today: In the morning, our guide will go to tourism bureau in Shigatse to apply for PSB permit for Mt. Everest, which will take about 1.5 hour. In Shigatse we will visit Tashilumpo Monastery (video) which is the seat of Panchen Lama, the equally important religious figure in Tibet as Dalai Lama. The monastery was built by the first Dalai Lama in 1447, and inside the Monastery placed the highest statue of Buddha in Tibet which is 26.8 meters high. After obtaining the permit, we will drive to Sakya County and pay a visit to the famous Sakya monastery which was founded in 1073 and it was the principal monastery of the Sakya sect of Tibetan Buddhism. Then we will drive to Tingri county for overnight.

Tashi Lhunpo Monastery Sakya Monastery
Tashi Lhunpo Monastery Sakya Monastery

Day 6: Tingri - Rongbuk Monastery - EBC

Highlights: Green Bus to EBC, Everest Base Camp (sunset view)

Schedule today: in the morning we will head to Everest Base camp. If the weather is good, on the top of the Gyalpo-la pass you can see 4 of the highest mountains over 8000 meters (Mt. Everest; Mt. Makalu; Mt. Lotse; Mt. Cho Oyu) in the world at the same time, what a great picture. Before reach the EBC, you can pay a visit to Ronnbuk Monastery, it is the highest monastery in the world, and you will find it a good position to watch the Everest. In the afternoon you will have lots of time exploring around EBC campsite while waiting for the Sunset View over Mt. Everest, you should not miss the holy moment when the golden sunset strikes the peak of Mt. Everest.

Rongbuk Monastery Mt. Everest Base Camp
Rongbuk Monastery Mt. Everest Base Camp

Day 7: Everest Base Camp - Saga

Highlights: Everest Sunrise View, Peikutso Lake

Schedule today: In the early morning, if weather is good, you can choose to wake up early to see the stunning sunrise view of Mt. Everest. After breakfast, we will head to Saga via Gyirong. On the road you will pass Peikutso Lake, the beautiful turquoise Peiku-tso(4590m) is one of Tibet’s magical spots with stunning views of the snowcapped Shiishapangma(8012m) and the Langtang range bordering Nepal to the south.

Mt. Everest Sunrise Peikutso Lake
Mt. Everest Sunrise Peikutso Lake

Day 8: Saga - Lake Manasarovar - Darchen

Highlights: Lake Manasarovar

Schedule today: In the morning you will head to Lake Manasarovar, Tibet’s holiest lake which sits at 4590 meters. We will go on following the upper reaches of the Brahmaputra River going through vast expanses of grasslands before arriving in Paryang, elevation 4590 meters. And Lake Manasarovar is an important pilgrimage destination for Tibetans and Hindu’s from India and Nepal. From the lake, you can see Mount Kailash in the distance. Then we will make the short drive to Darchen, the starting point of the trek around Mt. Kailash.

Lake Manasarovar Darchen Village
Lake Manasarovar Darchen Village

Day 9: Darchen - Dirapuk Monastery (20km trekking)

Highlights: Dirapuk(Lhalung Dira) Monastery

Schedule today: After breakfast, drive approx. 13 Kms to Darchen, the trek starting point of Kailash kora. Tarchen is also known as the outer "Asthapath". The first day of our Kora is a gradual walk with multitudes of other local pilgrims chanting and praying. The trail leads us to few ups and downs till we reach our camp/guest house at Dirapuk (4860 m) 7 km/ 5 - 6 hours trek. We will be camping on the nice grassy meadows with a view of northwestern face of Kailash.

Mount Kailash Trekking Mount Kailash Trekking
Mount Kailash Trekking Mount Kailash Trekking

Day 10: Diraphuk Monastery-Zutulpuk Monastery (15km trekking)

Highlights: Drolma Chu Valley,Thukpe Dzingbu Lake,

Schedule today: Lha Chu Valley blurs as you turn towards Drolma Chu Valley. You ascend to Drolma La, the highest point on the trip. But soon after the breathtaking biew of the Thukpe Dzingbu Lake, known as the Lake of Compassion, at the summit, you realize that this tough and challenging ascent has indeed been worthwhile and fruitful. Several prayer flags can be seen at the summit. Further on, the trail descends to the flat fields of Zutul-puk, which houses a monastery and several fascinating caves. These caves were used for meditation. Milarepa's cave is one of the most ancient and popular. Milarepa's footprints and elbow prints are believed to be imprinted all over this cave filled with mani stones. You then reach Zutulpuk.

Mount Kailash Trekking Mount Kailash Trekking
Mount Kailash Trekking Mount Kailash Trekking

Day 11: Zutulpuk Monastery -Darchen (17km trekking)

Highlights: Mt. Kailash trekking

Schedule today: In the morning we will hike back to Darchen. Away from Zugulpuk, you follow the trail through Bhark plain leading to Darchen. It is an easy walk along some impressive gorges and around many manic stones and mani walls back to the Bharkha Plains and dusty Darchen. The Kora has come to an end- you have erased your sins, endured cold nights and mornings, crossed some of the highest passes in the world, met countless fellow pilgrims and sent prayers of peace out to the world. Shortly after arriving at Darchen, you board the waiting vehicle for a short drive to Chi Gomapa, on the shore of the Manasarovar Lake.

Day 12: Darchen-Zanda -Guge Kingdom Ruins

Highlights: Tholing Mound Forest, Tholing Monastery

Schedule today: Drive from Darchen to Zanda along the Xinjiang-Tibet Highway, and drive off the main highway after 150Km, go across a few mountain passes, you will see the magnificent Tholing Mound Forest. After visit the Tholing Monastery, we will drive to Tsaparang Guge Kingdom ruins, in the vast valley of Sutlej river you can find ruins of ancient famous Guge kingdom among the remarkable sand-dunes, a number of temples are still intact and contain exquisite murals and decorative motifs, some are dating back more than 10,000 years, make a half day tour at there.

Tholing Monastery Guge Kingdom Ruins
Tholing Monastery Guge Kingdom Ruins

Day 13: Zanda - Shiquanhe River

Highlights: Clay Forest,Xiangquanhe River Canyon

Schedule today: In the morning we will drive to Shiquanhe town. The scenic on the road is amazing like the Clay Forest formed by crustal movement in Xiangquanhe River Canyon. When arrive you can visit around the town and get some supplies for the following days as Shiquanhe Town is the capital city of Ngari and the last big town for the tour of Ngari region.

Shiquanhe Area Shiquanhe Area
Shiquanhe Area Shiquanhe Area

Day 14: Shiquanhe -Pangongtso-Shiquanhe

Highlights: Pangongtso Lake, Rutog Rock Painting

Schedule today: In the morning we will drive to Lake Panggongtso, it is a mysterious lake the one part of lake is inside Tibetan area and other part is situated inside Indian Territory. Pangongtso Lake is also known as long necked Swan and you will see many kind of birds’ habitat there.

We will visit the Rutog Rock Paiting on the way back to Shiquanhe Town.

Pangongtso Lake Pangongtso Lake
Pangongtso Lake Pangongtso Lake

Day 15: Shiquanhe - Gerze

Highlights: Changthang grassland, Tibet wildlife, salt lake

Schedule today: In the morning we will drive to Gerze via Changthang grassland and you will have the chance to view the Tibetan donkeys, antelopes and so on .With snow-capped mountains, lots of nameless lake on the road you will not feel bored.

Day 16: Gerze - Wanpo South Village

Highlights: Tibet wildlife, Zhari Namco Lake, Tangra Yumco Lake

Schedule today: In the morning we will pass Coqen County and enjoy the colorful mountains by the road. Though the road to Zhari Namco Lake from Coqen become much bumpier, it is world a visit to the largest saline lake with the highest altitude in Ngari region. Then we will pay a visit to Tangra Yumco Lake, the holy lake in Bon religion, it said that the color of the lake can change three times within a single day.

Day 17: Wanpo South Village

Highlights: Dangchung Monastery

Schedule today: The Wanpo South Village is also called “wanpo paradise.” In the morning you can visit around the village, you will find largely, potatoes, Rapeseed, Bok Choy and so on are cultivated here with the altitude of 4500m above sea level. Take your time to discover more in this peaceful village.

Day 18: Wanpo South Village - Namtso Lake

Highlights: Namtso Lake (sunset)

Schedule today: In the morning, we will head to Namtso which is the highest saline lake in the world. Namtso as one of the four holy lakes of Tibet, in there you will see snow-capped Nyenchen Thanglha Mountain Ranges and lots of nomads and their tent with grazing yak and sheep densely-populated on the flourishing grassland ( in summer) . The sunset sceneries are also awesome.

Namtso Lake Yak by the Namtso Lake
Namtso Lake Yak by the Namtso Lake

Day 19: Namtso - Lhasa (250 km/ about 5 hours on wheel)

Highlights: Namtso Lake (sunrise), Yangpachen Hotspring

Schedule today: If you want to watch the fabulous sunrise views over the Namtso Lake, wake up early, you will never regret doing that if weather permits. You may take a short rest or hiking before driving back to Lhasa. We will have lunch in Damxung, on the way, if you are interested in taking a bath at Yangpachen hotspring besides the snowy mountain; you could do that on your own, self-paid for the hot spring fee.

Namtso Lake Yampachen Hotspring
Namtso Lake Yampachen Hotspring

Day 20: Depart from Lhasa

Schedule today: Tour ends, our guide and driver will drop you off at airport in Lhasa. Welcome to Tibet next time.

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