Day 01: Arrive in Lhasa (3650 m/11972ft)
Your tour starts with your arrival in Lhasa today. There are two ways to arrive Lhasa—one is via Nepal and another via mainland China. If you choose to fly from Kathmandu to Lhasa you will have 1 hour 10 minutes Trans-Himalayan flight which is considered one of the most beautiful air route in the world that takes you over the Everest (8848m), Kanchenjunga (8536m) and other Himalayan peaks. If you are coming via mainland China, you might fly from any major cities or take the world’s highest train route to reach Lhasa. You will be received by our Tibetan guide at the airport/train station. Approximately 1.5 hours drive along 93 km road, from the airport/train station, you will reach Lhasa. It's advisable to rest and take it easy for the remainder of the day due to Lhasa's altitude. Overnight in Lhasa
Day 02: Sightseeing in Lhasa (3650 m/11972ft)
Foremost, our tour begins with a visit to Sera Monastery with an experienced tour guide also working as an interpreter escorts. This is a preserved monastery of white-washed walls and golden roofs. Equally adventurous and exciting rhythm builds up while touring Norbulingka, the summer palace of the Dalai Lama. Jokhang Temple is another important sacred site which unravels more deep seated mysteries of Tibetan Buddhism. Visit to Barkhor Markets can be quite a alter from other visits as you roam around the city testing every details around the stalls and you may purchase some goods that displays Tibetan culture, custom and tradition. Overnight in Lhasa.
Day 03: Sightseeing in Lhasa (3650 m/11972ft)
Today your visit to Potala palace and Drepung monastery will bestow invaluable insights. From the Mar Po Ri Hill where the Potala Palace, the 17th century great monumental structure stands, you can get an awesome view of entire city. Potala Palace, an immense structure, its interior space being in excess of 130,000 square meters has private quarters of the Dalai Lama, numerous grand state rooms and chapels. Your next visit will be to Drepung Monastery, a residence of Dalai Lama before Potala Palace which was built in 14th century and used to shelter around 10,000 monks some time ago. Tibetans' immensely believe and respect this monastery. Overnight in Lhasa.
Day 04: Sightseeing in Lhasa (3650 m/11972ft)
In morning you will visit Tibet Museum. Officially inaugurated in October of 1999 the museum houses a rich collection of prehistoric cultural relics including Buddha statues in different postures, imperial jade seals, gold albums, gifts granted by emperors, colorful Thankas, and various printed Sanskrit and Tibetan scriptures. You can also see variety of folk art such as unique Tibetan handicrafts, costumes, jewelry, and adornments made of gold, silver, and jade, as well as fine Chinese pottery. Despite the collections the museum holds, the museum building complex with its ornamented beams, pillars, lintels, banners and wall hangings exhibit traditional Tibetan architectural styles. In the afternoon, you will be free for shopping. Overnight in Lhasa.
Day 05: Drive to Gyantse (3950m/12956ft) -265 km
Following Friendship Highway, while driving past Khamba La (4794 m), you will have a break to appreciate majestic views of Yamdrok?Tso Lake, a lake deep blue in color and Nazin Kang Sang glacier standing proud at 7252m. Ahead to westwards, you come across another Karo La pass at 5045m. Glance through the road, you can see huge glaciers tumbling down into the road. After hours of driving for 261 km, you enter town of Gyantse where you will see beautifully landscaped Tibetan villages. Overnight in Gyantse.
Day 06: Sightseeing & drive to Shigatse (3900m/12792ft) -92km
Gyantse prides on Gyantse Dzong and Kumbum. Gyantse Dzong is a historical fort built in the 14th century and overlooks a mesmerizing view of entire Gyantse and surrounding Nyang Chu Valley. Kumbum has large gold domed 35m high chorten(stupa ) and houses with several chapels and Tibetan Buddhist murals. Kubum means 100,000 images in Tibetan. After enjoying and exploring Gyantse, you will take a 90 km drive to Shigatse. Shalu monastery built with Han, Tibetan and Indian style architecture is about one and half hour away from Gyantse on the way to Shigatse. After a brief observation of the monastery you drive further to Shigatse, second largest city of Tibet. Tashilhunpo Monastery is the major attraction of Shigatse being one of the largest functioning monasteries in Tibet. Overnight in Shigatse.
Day 07: Drive to Shegar (4150m/13612ft), visit Natang and Sakya Monastery en route-274km
Today you will transverse along the Friendship Highway amidst picturesque landscape driving past small town of Lhatse and Gyamtso La pass at 5220m. You will visit Natang Monastery which is 12 Kms far from Xigatse, again you drive to Sakya Monastery, where you can see the largest book in the world in Sakya's great library written in gold. In the evening time we reach in Shegar. As the route opens into plains, many monasteries and camps of nomadic herders become visible in route to Shegar. Overnight in Shegar.
Day 08: Drive to Rongbuk (5050m/16564ft)-Explore Everest Base Camp (5250m/17,220 ft)-85 km
Away from Shegar, you drive to the south crossing Pang La pass at 5150m/16890. Along the drive, you can laze around in the splendor of majestic views of snow capped peaks such as Makalu and Shishapangma. After driving for 85 km, you eventually reach Rongbuk from where you get spectacular sight of Mt. Everest. The program today is to explore to Everest Base Camp through the day. Drive to EBC is allowed only for expeditions, so you need to walk 8 km (one way) or take a horse or local bus to reach the Everest Base Camp. You will also visit Ronbuk Monastery, a Buddhist pilgrimage site founded in 1902 by a Nyingmapa Lama in an area of meditation huts that had been in use by monks and hermits for over 400 years. Hermitage meditation caves dot the cliff walls all around the monastery complex and up and down the valley. Many walls and stones, carved with sacred syllables and prayers, line the paths. Overnight in Rongbuk.
Day 09: Drive to Zhangmu (2300m/7, 544ft)-245 km
In case, on Day 08 due to bad weather or some consequences, if you are not able to explore around Everest Base Camp, today’s first light will be utilized to explore around Everest Base Camp and to watch sunrise on Mt. Everest. It is a truly awe inspiring place with the absolute north face of the highest mountain in the world soaring above you. You return back to the Friendship Highway to continue drive to Zhangmu. Driving past Tingri crossing Lalung La pass at (5124 m/ 16068 ft) and Shung La pass at (5200 m/ 17056 ft), Nalyam Pass (3800m/12464 ft) which offer enchanting views of the surrounding peaks of Shishapangma, Cho Oyu, Menlungtse and Gauri Shanker, you tumble down from gradually from the dry Tibetan Plateau. Now, you find yourself amidst the verdant and fertile vegetation of Zhangmu at 2300 meter in the Nepalese border. Overnight in Zhangmu.
Day 10: Drive to Kathmandu (1350m/4428ft)-123km
Few kilometers drive away from Zhangmu to Friendship Bridge across Bhote Koshi River brings you closer to Immigration Control in Kodari where you depart with your Tibetan guide and driver, and walk across the river to meet Nepalese guide to drive to Kathmandu. After 4 hours of driving through deep valleys, you finally arrive in Kathmandu. Overnight in Kathmandu (hotel not included in Kathmandu).
THE TRAVEL RELATED INFORMATION:
All accommodation has been chosen for their standard of hygiene, standard of service, location and food quality. All accommodation is based on twin share basis. During your tour we will use Kyichu Hotel or similar hotel in Lhasa, Gyantse Hotel or similar hotel in Gyangtse, Mansarover Hotel or Shengkang Hotel in Shigatse, Qomolangama Hotel or similar hotel in Shegar, Everest View Hotel or similar hotel in Rongbuk and Zhangmu hotel or Caiyuan Hotel in Zhangmu. Single supplement will be provided on request, it costs US$200 single supplement fee. Bear in mind this is a standard overland package; for private or upgraded tour, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Every day's breakfast is included in the package. This will be a dish of Tibetan or continental origin cooked by the lodgings you stay at. Lunch, dinner and any extra food are up to you; as a rough guide, budget Yuan 60 to Yuan 100 (US$10 to US$16) per day.
Equipments & Packing List
Long sleeved shirt, Jumper or fleecy jacket, T - shirts, walking shoes, Polypropylene/wool socks, Light cotton socks for under wool socks, Sun hat, Woolen hat, Gloves, Sun block for lips, Goggles or sunglasses, Long underwear, Towel and toiletries, Medical & first aid kit, Flash light, Batteries and bulbs
Keep in mind that you are traveling overland to highest plateau in the world; the drive goes constantly above 5000m/16400ft during your journey except Lhasa (3,650m/11,975ft). Driving fast in such an elevation could cause medical conditions (Acute Mountain Sickness) which could be fatal. There is 50% less oxygen compared to sea level in high-altitudes places like in Tibet. The higher the altitude the less is the oxygen in air. Your body needs few days to acclimatize to this less oxygen environment. Although we provide enough information regarding AMS precaution matters, if you get AMS, we do not have other options to treat it other than medication. We advise specially the guest(s) with known heart or lungs or blood diseases to consult their doctor before traveling. Mild headaches, fever, loss of appetite or stomach disorder are symptoms of AMS.
Leader(s) & Staff Arrangements
All our tour leaders speak fluent English and know all the complexities and history of the areas they travel in. All our Tibet trips are run in cooperation with our Tibetan counterpart, so you can be assured that authentic local touch. We can run this Tour for as few as two people and up to eight people. However if you'd like to make a group booking for more than eight people it can easily be arranged and you can choose the dates that best suit you.
Health & Experience Required
This Tour involves five to six hours driving per day, but comparatively little walking (indeed, walking is not mandatory). However, it is all at very high altitude, which will take a physical toll. There are no special physical requirements, but high altitude experience is a plus.
Autumn (August, Sept, & Oct), spring (March & April) & summer (May, June & July) are the best seasons for attempting this wonderful Trans Himalayan overland journey. No matter about the group size, this tour can be arranged for both individuals and small group travelers any time on your request.