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16 Days Lhasa Mt.Everest Mt.Kailash Guge Kingdom: Mysterious Tibet Group Tour

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  • 16 Days Lhasa Mt.Everest Mt.Kailash Guge Kingdom: Mysterious Tibet Group Tour
  • Mount Kailash in Tibet
  • Mount Kailash in Tibet
  • Zanda Earth Forest in Tibet
  • Zanda Earth Forest in Tibet
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  • 16 Days Lhasa Mt.Everest Mt.Kailash Guge Kingdom: Mysterious Tibet Group Tour
  • Mount Kailash in Tibet
  • Mount Kailash in Tibet
  • Zanda Earth Forest in Tibet
  • Zanda Earth Forest in Tibet
  • Mount Everest
  • Mount Shishapangma Autumn View
  • Lhasa Potala Palace
  • Lhasa Jokhang Temple
  • Lake Manasarovar in Tibet
  • Sakya Monastery, Tibet
  • Sakya Monastery, Tibet
  • Tour Code: AOT-TGT-F1

  • Travel Route: Lhasa - Yamdrok Lake - Shigatse - EBC - Saga - Darchen - Mount Kailash - Zanda - Sakya - Shigatse - Lhasa

  • Features: World Heritages, Architectures, Religious Sites, Nature Wonders, Lakes, Holy Mountains, Adventure

  • Tour Type: Small Group of maximum 12 travelers, guaranteed departures;

  • Guide & Driver: English-speaking guide, experienced driver with regular tourist vehicle

  • Accommodation: 15 nights

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Home Tibet Group Tours 16 Days Lhasa Mt.Everest Mt.Kailash Guge Kingdom: Mysterious Tibet Group Tour
  • Itinerary
  • Dates & Price
  • Accommodation
  • Trip Notes
  • Reviews

What journey will both open your eyes and enlighten your spirit? Tibet, located on the southwestern China, is a land of mystery and intrigue, with its ancient traditions, spiritual practices, and remote breathtaking landscapes. From the hidden sacred temples to the snow-capped holy mountains, Tibet offers visitors a glimpse into a world that is both enchanting and mysterious, full of secrets and wonder.

This 16-day Tibet group tour is the most popular trip taking you to explore Lhasa and around, Yamdrok Lake, Karola Glacier, Shigatse, Everest Base Camp, Mount Kailash and Guge Kingdom, etc. Mount Everest is the highest mountain in the world and is one of the most iconic and awe-inspiring natural wonders on the planet and you can marvel at its grandness and holiness at the best location. While, trekking around Mount Kailash for 3 days is a challenging and rewarding experience that offers travelers a chance to fulfill the circuit and get spiritual enlightenment. Besides holy mountains, you will enchanted by the emerald lakes in different shapes with different stories. The mysterious Guge Kingdom is another highlight during your trip which was a once-powerful civilization that flourished in western Tibet from the 10th to the 17th century. Its ruins are a testament to its grandeur, with towering temples, palaces, and fortresses that give you a glimpse into the region's rich historical and cultural heritage. This trip will definitely be a lifetime exploration, leaving you with the best memories of your life. Discover now!

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Explore the mysterious Tibet with Asia Odyssey Travel at the lowest price. It can save up to 30% compared to a private tour.
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Stable Departures in 2024
With stable departures in the whole year of 2024, you have the flexibility to choose a departure date that suits your schedule.
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Travel with like-minded travelers in the stunning destinations on our small group tour. You’ll get in-depth and intimate experience as a private tour.
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With ease and comfort, from big wows to hidden gems, our small group tour leaves you feeling that you have really explored. You won't miss any highlights of Tibet.

Itinerary Day by Day

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Day 1 Arrival in Lhasa | Airport Pick-up and Hotel Check-in
Altitude: 3650m | Distance: 100km, about 1.5 hours' drive

Altitude: 3650m | Distance: 100km, about 1.5 hours' drive

Tashi Delek! Welcome to Lhasa, the capital of the Tibet Autonomous Region! Upon your arrival at the airport in Lhasa, the tour guide and driver will meet you at the exit, and then escort you to the hotel in downtown Lhasa (100km, about 1.5 hours’ drive) . You can have a good rest to get used to the altitude (3,650m) in your hotel and get ready to explore Lhasa with your guide the next day.

Arrival Ideas:
Lhasa is located in the southern part of the Tibetan Plateau and southwestern China. Traveling to Tibet is convenient by air, railway, or road. There are five airports in Tibet, with Lhasa Gonggar Airport being the most popular for flights from Chengdu (which is also popular), Chongqing, Xian, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Kunming, Xining, Shangri-La, and other cities. One international airline even connects Lhasa and Kathmandu. Moreover, travelers can take the train to Lhasa from Xining (21 hours, the starting point of the Qinghai-Tibet Railway), Lanzhou (24.5 hours), Chongqing (35.5 hours), Chengdu (36.5 hours), Xian (31 hours), Beijing (40.5 hours), Shanghai (47 hours), Guangzhou (52.5 hours), Shigatse (2.5 hours), Nyingzhi (4 hours), and other cities.

Kind Reminds:
1.It is good to avoid altitude sickness by slowing down, keeping warm, drinking water frequently, avoiding showers for the first one or two days, taking it easy, and sleeping well.
2.You should always follow your doctor's advice regarding altitude based on your health condition.
3.Be sure to let your guide or the hotel staff know whenever you feel unwell or need help. The people there are always willing to help and are good at dealing with altitude sickness.

Attractions

have a good rest to get used to the altitude

Transportation

arrive in Lhasa by yourself; pick-up service while in Lhasa

Dining

None

Accommodation

3-star hotel in downtown Lhasa

Day 2 Lhasa Culture Tour | Lhasa Traditional Handicraft Art Center, Sera Monastery
Altitude: 3650m | Distance: 30km, about 50 minutes' drive

Today, have fun in the Lhasa Traditional Handicraft Art Center for a close touch of Tibetan culture, and you will experience Tibetan Buddhism by witnessing the Monks' Debating in Sera Monastery.

In the morning, enjoy the experience in the Lhasa Traditional Handicraft Art Center, fully immerse yourself by making Tibetan incense, Tibetan calligraphy, and the secrets of block printing. Tibetan incense is typically burned as an offering during religious ceremonies and rituals in Tibetan Buddhism. The ingredients used for Tibetan incense usually include juniper, sandalwood, cedarwood, cinnamon, cloves, and various medicinal herbs. Besides learning how to make Tibetan incense, you can also participate in writing your own name in the Tibetan Language with the help of a local teacher, and engraving and printing it out. Handmade Tibetan incense and printed text can be taken home as a souvenir of the Tibetan cultural experience. This evening, you will enjoy dinner with the group, featuring Tibetan cuisine.

In the afternoon, drive approximately 7km (about 20 minutes) to visit Sera Monastery, which is one of the three great Gelug university monasteries of Tibet. It offers the opportunity to experience Tibetan Buddhism up close. The highlight of Sera Monastery is watching the monks' debate, which takes place around 15:00-17:00 (except on Sundays). The debate is an interesting form of exchange, where one monk acts as the questioner, standing while the answerer or group of answerers sit. The standing monk asks questions and slaps his palms and stomps, each action having a special meaning, such as activating wisdom, and are not meant to be aggressive. You will also have the chance to attend prayer ceremonies, visit meditation halls, and learn about the monastic way of life. It is a must-visit destination to gain insight into the beliefs and practices of Tibetan Buddhism.

Attractions

2 iconic sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

Breakfast

Accommodation

3-star hotel in downtown Lhasa

Day 3 Lhasa City Tour | Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street
Altitude: 3650m

Today, it is the time to explore Lhasa by visiting the world-famous Potala Palace, a World Heritage site and the picture behind the 50 RMB. And then, you will explore Lhasa by visiting Jokhang Temple, a world cultural heritage site renowned for its brilliant architecture, culture, art, and history. Finally, you can stroll through the famous Barkhor Street with locals and learn more about the daily kora life of Tibetans.

In the morning, you can walk up to the Potala Palace to explore. Not only is it the landmark of Tibet, but it is also the traditional residence and winter palace of the Dalai Lama (1649-1959). After climbing 365 steps from the gate of the Potala Palace to reach the Red Palace, you will arrive at the highest palace in the world at an altitude of 3,700m, where you can enjoy an excellent panoramic view of Lhasa city. As you explore the principal halls, chapels, and shrines of past Dalai Lamas in the Red Palace, you will be amazed and moved by its remarkable paintings, gorgeous jeweled works, skilled carving, colorful ornamentation, and the mystery stories behind the treasures. Inside the Potala Palace, you will meet many Tibetan pilgrims who come from afar to pray at this sacred site, making it a lifetime destination for them. You can also ask your guide to provide more stories about Songtsen Gampo, the 33rd king of Tibet, who first built the Potala Palace in the 7th century for his marriage to Princess Wencheng of the Tang Dynasty. (Please note that the visit order may be adjusted based on the visiting time specified on your Potala Palace ticket. All visitors are required to visit the palace with a tour group and remain inside for one hour. Please be advised that photography is prohibited inside the palace.)

Located in the heart of Lhasa for over 1300 years, the Jokhang Temple is an important pilgrimage site for Buddhists from all over the world. Famed as the spiritual center of Tibet, it is said that the Jokhang Monastery was built for King Songtsen Gampo's two brides: Chinese Princess Wencheng and Nepalese Princess Bhrikuti. "Jokhang" means "House of Buddha", and it houses a life-size statue of the 12-year-old Sakyamuni, which is considered a treasure of the Buddhist world. This is why Buddhist pilgrims consider it the holiest destination. The Jakhong temple is also renowned for its beautiful architecture. You can admire the intricate carvings, colorful murals, ornate decorations, and details of the building, which is a masterpiece of Tibetan architecture. Time seems to stand still as you watch people pray in front of the temple during the day and night. (Please note that the visit order may be adjusted based on the reservation of your Jokhang Temple Ticket Reservation.)

Afterward, take a walk on busy Barkhor Street near the Jokhang Monastery, which was a place for Buddhists to do a kora (pilgrim circuit) in ancient times. Nowadays, it has become a thriving local market where you can drink a pot of yak butter tea, dress in Tibetan clothes for photos, and pick up some local Tibetan, Nepalese, and Indian handicrafts and souvenirs.

In the evening, enjoy a group dinner featuring delicious Tibetan cuisine, specially offered by AOT team.

Attractions

3 iconic sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

Breakfast,Dinner

Accommodation

3-star hotel in downtown Lhasa

Day 4 Lhasa - Gyantse - Shigatse | Yamdrok Lake, Karola Glacier, Gyantse Kumbum
Altitude: 3850m | Distance: 380km, about 7 hours’ drive

Altitude: 3850m | Distance: 380km, about 7 hours’ drive

On this day, drive about 8 to 9 hours (340km) from Lhasa to Shigatse, with a visit to two amazing natural landscapes - Yamdrok Lake and Karola Glacier - on the way.

In the morning, after about 3 to 4 hours of driving (200km), make sure to have your camera ready. When you reach Kampala Pass (4,797 meters), you'll have a breathtaking view of Yamdrok Lake, a freshwater lake down below, as well as spectacular views of the holy Mt. Nyenchen Khangsar in the distance. It is one of the four largest sacred lakes in Tibet, along with Lhamo Latso Lake, Manasarovar Lake, and Namtso Lake. Yamdrok Lake offers stunning views of the Tibetan plateau and is said to be able to help Tibetans find the reincarnated soul of the Dalai Lama. Moreover, you may see dressed-up Tibetan mastiffs, dogs, goats, and yaks there. It is optional for you to pay 5-10 yuan to pose with and take photos of them; for local Tibetans, it's a way to earn extra income for their families.

In the afternoon, drive about 1.5 hours (70km) to visit one of the most beautiful glaciers in Tibet - Karola Glacier, the filming location of the movie "Red Valley" (Hong He Gu). As one of Tibet's three major continental glaciers, backed by the southern slope of Naiqin Kangsang Peak (7,191 meters), one of the four highest peaks in Tibet, this white glacier is also the source of the eastern part of the Nianchu River. The Karola Glacier (5,012m) is only 300 meters away from the highway connecting Lhasa to Gyantse town, and you can view it right from your vehicle. You can also easily walk to the foot of the charming glacier, which has a shape like a frozen waterfall right above the road and you. Besides the fantastic hike to the Karola Glacier, on the opposite side of the road, you can appreciate the beautiful snow-capped mountain of Mt Kalurong.

Notes for visiting Karola Glacier:
1. The altitude at the glacier scenic spot is about 5,012m, so be sure to slow down to avoid altitude sickness.
2. The public toilet at the glacier is very basic.
3. Local people may ask you to take photos with them for a fee. Be sure to ask before taking photos to avoid potential issues.

After that, drive to Gyantse County for a look at the Gyantse Kumbum sitting inside the Pelkor Chode Monastery. Marvel at the 32-meter structure adorned with intricate carvings, sculptures, and frescoes and take a look at the stupa inside. Later, continue your driving (97km, 2 hours) to your hotel in Shigatse, the nearest town on the Friendship Highway between Tibet and Nepal. Have a good rest and get ready for a once-in-a-lifetime trip to EBC the next day.

Attractions

3 iconic sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

Breakfast

Accommodation

Shigatse

Day 5 Shigatse - Mt. Everest | Gyawu La Pass, Rongbuk Monastery, Mt. Everest Base Camp
Altitude: 5100m | Distance: 340km, about 7 hours’ drive

Altitude: 5100m | Distance: 340km, about 7 hours’ drive

After breakfast, drive about 6.5 hours (330km) to the peak of the world - Mount Everest, while stopping by the Rongbuk Monastery - the world’s highest altitude monastery, before spending the night at the Everest Base Camp (EBC).

Departing from Shigatse, after about 4.5 hours of driving (240km), you’ll get your first glimpse of Mt. Everest from the Gyawu La Pass (5,200m, Gyatso La Pass), between Lhatse and Shelkar. In addition to Mt. Everest, you’ll be amazed by the winding road that seems to go on forever. Along the way, you may see local people biking or hiking all the way to Everest Base Camp. For them reaching the base of the world's highest mountain is a must-do goal or holy belief that is worth the effort.

After enjoying the beautiful and unique scenery on the pass, including incredibly snow-capped mountain ranges, blue skies, floating high clouds, and endless grasslands, it is time to head to Rongbuk Monastery (about 3.5 hours,122km) for the first good view of Mt. Everest. At an altitude of 5,154m, Rongbuk Monastery is the world’s highest monastery, a must-visit for spiritual travelers, and is also photo-worthy. It used to be an area of meditation huts, and you can find hermitage meditation caves with a history of over 400 years, dotting the cliff walls all around the monastery and the valley. Along with brilliant Mt. Everest views, at Rongbuk Monastery, you will be touched by the breathtaking scenery, such as large white chortens, piles of mani stones, colorful prayer flags, devout pilgrims passing by.

Notes:
1. Travelers can only go as far as the Rongbuk Temple area rather than a few kilometers farther as before. But it’s not a big difference in terms of viewing Mt. Everest.
2. Today’s food and lodging is very basic. Due to the high altitude, it is possible that you may experience some symptoms of altitude sickness. We recommend that you stay well hydrated, relax and enjoy the beautiful scenery to minimize your symptoms.

Attractions

3 iconic sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

Breakfast,Dinner

Accommodation

basic hostel at the Everest Base Camp

Day 6 EBC - Saga | Mount Shishapangma, Pelkhu-tso
Altitude: 4600m | Distance: 320km, about 7 hours’ drive

Altitude: 4600m | Distance: 320km, about 7 hours’ drive

In the morning, you’ll have the opportunity to witness the unforgettable exciting moment of the beautiful sunrise over Mount Everest. The snow-capped mountain will be bathed in a warm golden light, creating a stunning contrast against the deep blue sky, providing a breathtaking natural sight.

After that, you and your group will leave Everest Base Camp and drive the old Tingri Road to Saga County. On the way, you will have the last chance to capture the breathtaking view of Mount Everest, the all-year-round snow-capped holy mountain shaped like a three-sided pyramid and feel the grandness of the highest point on earth before you head to next stop. Later, you will overlook the majestic and awe-inspiring Mount Shishapangma, about 120km from Mount Everest and located in the Himalayas near the Nepal-Tibet border. At an elevation of 8,027 meters, Mount Shishapangma is the 14th highest mountain in the world and the only 8,000-meter peak that lies entirely within Tibet. The mountain is known for its striking appearance, with its towering peaks and massive glaciers. Surrounded by lush valleys and beautiful grasslands, you can have enjoy the stunning view of the towering peaks fascinating scenery around.

The main road passes through the desolate plains of Digur Tang, with its enormous sand dunes contrasting with the neighboring snow peaks of Shishapangma and Langtang to the south. As we leave the Bum-chu basin, you will descend into the relatively lower elevations of the beautiful turquoise Pelkhu-tso (elevation 4590 meters), a cobalt blue lake and the largest lake in Shigatse. Mount Shishabangma is the lucky holy mountain and while Pelkhu-tso Lake is the holy lake like a shining emerald diamond quietly lying at the foot of the mountain, setting off the beauty of each other.

After visiting the beautiful lake, you’ll drive another 69 kilometers to Saga County and spend the night in the small town of Saga.

Road Condition: The road condition get rougher from the old Tingri Road as it runs parallel to the to the Himalayan mountain ranges and the Nepalese sides known as the Anapurna Ranges.

Attractions

2 sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

None

Accommodation

Hotel in Saga

Day 7 Saga - Drongpa County - Darchen | Lake Manasarovar, Lhanag-tso
Altitude: 4600m | Distance: 500km, about 8 hours’ drive

Altitude: 4600m | Distance: 500km, about 8 hours’ drive

On this seventh day, your guide and driver will take you from Saga County to Drongpa County, the origin place of the Brahmaputra River. You will make a stop in a small village along the main road that consists of only a few basic guesthouses, restaurants and a small monastery known as “Old Drongpa”. Pay a short visit to Dargyeling Monastery which sits on the hill-side about 1.5km off the main road. It is the best preserved monastery in the area and worth a visit for its fine views and unusual chortens. Around the monastery, you will be able to observe a pile of yak heads that are carved with “sutras” and “mantras”. New Drongpa is another small town with a few shops, hotels and restaurants located about 25 kilometers from Old Drongpa monastery. Later, you will continue on to the Baryang Township (elevation 4750 meters).

Before heading to Darchen, you and your group will make a stop to admire Lake Manasarovar, also known as the“invincible lake”. This lake is the most venerated of Tibet’s many lakes and one of its most beautiful. With its sapphire-blue waters, sandy shoreline, and snow-capped mountain backdrop  create a stunning landscape that contrasts with the rugged terrain of Mount Kailash. Take a moment to appreciate the tranquil scenery and the reflections of the blue sky and white clouds on the lake's surface. You may also see pilgrims praying and bathing in the crystal-clear waters, adding to the spiritual atmosphere of the place.

Separated with the holy Lake Manasarovar by a road, you will arrive at Lhanag-tso Lake (altitude: 4575 meters). This lake is called “Ghost Lake” because it appears dark blue and is very salty and the water is prohibited to drink. There are no plants, no cattle or sheep around the lake and everything seems lifeless. Stand by the lake and listen to the roaring waves crashing against the shoreline.

After the exploration, it is time to drive to your final destination of the day - the small town of Darchen (altitude: 4574 meters), nestled below the foothills of Mount Kailash. Have a good sleep in Darchen.

Attractions

2 sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

None

Accommodation

hotel in Darchen

Day 8 Mt. Kailash Trek Day One: Darchen - Driapuk Monastery
Altitude: 4600m | Trekking Distance: 22km, about 6 hours

Altitude: 4600m | Trekking Distance: 22km, about 6 hours

Mount Kailash, at 6638 meters, dominates the region with the sheer awesomeness of its four-sided summit. It is a sacred mountain by four religions: Tibetan Buddhism, Hinduism, Bon and Jainism. In Tibetan Buddhism, it’s the home of the Buddha Demchok (representing nirvana). And in their scriptures, Mount Kailash is considered as the world’s center. Pilgrims from across Asia trek across the spectacular high-altitude landscape of remote Western Tibet to pay homage and walk around the sacred mountain. The whole trekking journey is 52-kilometer religious trek around Mount Kailash at Darchen and which is also the finishing point for the circumnavigation of the sacred mountain. The trekking takes about 3 days.

Suggested Trekking Route on Day One: Darchen to Dira-puk Monastery

Start your trekking in the town of Darchen. From there, follow the kora path westward across the Barkha Plain. Then pass Tarboche, which is one of the most significant sites for Tibet's most important festival, Saga Dawa. During Saga Dawa, hundreds of pilgrims gather to watch the annual raising of the flagpole. Just west of Tarboche is the “two-legged” Chorten Kangnyi. It is an auspicious act for pilgrims to walk through the small chorten’s archway. Later, you will hike to Chuku Monastery perched high above the valley floor on the hillside to the west. This monastery belongs to the Sakya sect of Tibetan Buddhism and you can enjoy its ornate interior murals and statues. From the Chuku bridge there are alternative trails along the east and west banks of the river. Either way it’s about three hours to Dira-puk Monastery. We recommend you to hike along the eastern pilgrim route. Lastly, you arrive at Dira-puk Monastery (elevation 4920 meters), sitting in a superb location on the hillside north of the Lha-chu across from the Shishapangma Guesthouse. From here, you can appreciate the astonishing north face of Mount Kailash, which from this angle appears as a massive, jet-black slab of granite ornamented with alabaster-white strips of snow. Dira-puk Monastery belongs to the Nyingma sect of Tibetan Buddhism. You will spend the night in a monastery’s guesthouse that offers the best accommodations in this area (although it is still very rustic.)

Travel Notes:
1. Local Tibetans around Mount Kailash provide services, such as horse or Yak riding, baggage carrying by yak or porter. The services are not included in the tour fee.
2. During the trekking, you will accommodate at Driapuk and Dzultripuk guesthouse or Tent (Multi-beds room). The accommodation is very basic.

Attractions

4-6 sites along the route

Transportation

trekking

Dining

None

Accommodation

guesthouse at Driapuk Monastery

Day 9 Mt. Kailash Trek Day Two: Driapuk Monastery - Dzultripuk
Altitude: 4600m | Trekking Distance: 20km, 7-8 Hours’ Trekking

Altitude: 4600m | Trekking Distance: 20km, 7-8 Hours’ Trekking

On this day, start your second day of the circuit of Mount Kailash. Less than an hour along is the meadow at Jarok Donhang (5210m). Then, it will be the toughest as you will ascend 762 meters up to the Dolma-la Pass (5360m). This pass is a challenging but sacred part of the Mount Kailash kora. According to Tibetan Buddhist belief, ascending Dolma-la Pass removes the sins of one lifetime. Many pilgrims struggle with the high altitude and difficult terrain, but consider completing the pass to be a profound spiritual achievement. You will get an early start as the sun begins its rise over the mountain ridges above you. Once you have reached the peak of the Dolma-la Pass, you’ll stop for a rest and catch the opportunity to admire all of the fantastic scenery around us.

After that, you will begin your descent to the Lhachu Valley, which will take about one hour. After another short rest, you will trek on for another four hours to our final destination for the day. You will walk along the right side of the river to finally reach Dzultripuk (4810m), whose name means “miracle cave of Milarepa” in the local language. Dzultripuk belongs to the Sakya sect of Tibetan Buddhism and you can see its murals , statues and religious scriptures. Dzultripuk serves as an important rest stop for pilgrims circumambulating the sacred mountain. You will be glad that you got an early start to reach Dzultripuk so that you will get there before the other groups - there are a limited number of rooms available here. You will have time this evening for some rest and relaxation in the guesthouse as you prepare for the final stretch of the trek tomorrow.

Attractions

3 sites

Transportation

trekking

Dining

None

Accommodation

guesthouse at Dzultripuk

Day 10 Mt. Kailash Trek Day Three: Dzultripuk - Darchen - Zanda
Altitude: 4600m | Trekking Distance: 14km, about 3-4 hours’ Trekking

Altitude: 4600m | Trekking Distance: 14km, about 3-4 hours’ Trekking

Today is the third day of trekking and you will complete your trek around Mount Kailash. From Dzultripuk Monastery the trail follows the river closely for an hour or so then climbs above the river and enters the lovely Gold and Red Cliffs, a narrow canyon whose walls are stained purple, cobalt and rust. On the road, you may have a chance to visit the caves, temples and shines that have been built upon around Milarepa’s Cave. When the trail emerges onto the Barkha plain, close to the fourth prostration point (4700m), Gurla Mandata is again visible in the distance. It’s now an easy one-hour walk back to Darchen along a dirt road. Today’s trekking is an easy walk back towards Darchen, taking only about 3 hours in total. After arriving at Darchen, the ending point of the circuit, you will have a sense of accomplishment having completed the sacred journey.

After the trekking, your driver will meet you and take you to Zanda in the Ngari Prefecture, Tibet. It is about 230 kilometers from Darchen, taking about 4.5 hours’ driving. Zanda County is known for its unique geography, and home to several important cultural and historical sites, such as the ancient Guge Kingdom ruins and Tholing Monastery. Stay overnight in Zanda.

Attractions

2 sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

None

Accommodation

hotel in Zanda

Day 11 Zanda - Guge Kingdom - Earth Forest - Tholing Monastery - Darchen
Altitude: 4600m | Distance: 340km, about 5 hours’ drive

Altitude: 4600m | Distance: 340km, about 5 hours’ drive

On this day, you and your group will have an in-depth exploration in Zanda County. Start your trip with a mysterious visit to the ruins of the ancient Guge Kingdom. The Guge Kingdom was an important kingdom in Tibet that flourished from the 10th century to the 17th century. The ruins of the Guge Kingdom feature unique architecture and exquisite artwork, including frescoes, sculptures, and carvings. The ancient artists used vivid colors and intricate details to depict Buddhist teachings, historical events, and daily life. The ruins of the Guge Kingdom were once an imperial estate that fell into disrepair after the civil war revolt and the invasion of the 8 Allied Forces of foreign countries that destroyed the once prosperous state. Luckily the legendary kingdom has not been totally lost as much can still be learned from what remains of it. You will follow the route and pay a visit to Red Palace which as a religious center consisting of several buildings - a main hall, a chapel and a monk’s quarters, and then visit White Palace, the residence of the king and his family. You can find that the architecture is in Tibetan, Indian and Chinese influences and the wall were adorned with intricate murals, carvings and sculptures. Reach the top the kingdom and have a fantastic panoramic view of the ruin site.

After visiting the Ancient Ruins of Guge Kingdom, drive about 20 kilometers to to see the magnificent Zanda Earth Forest. This unique natural phenomenon is created by wind and water erosion, forming unusual rock formations that are considered the most typical and largest tertiary strata earth forest in the world. The Earth Forest stretches over more than five kilometers along both sides of the Elephant Spring River. The rocks resemble warriors defending the mountaintop, some like thousands of horses galloping, and some like devout followers of a religion nurturing themselves. From different angles, visitors can appreciate the wonderful scenery. You can marvel at the strange and otherworldly shapes of the rocks, feel the uniqueness of the incredible Earth Forest against a backdrop of snow-capped mountains, and learn about the geological processes that have shaped the landscape.

The last stop today is Tholing Monastery with a history dating back to the 10th century. It is one of the oldest Buddhist monasteries in Tibet and was an important center for Buddhism and art during the Guge Kingdom era. Tholing means “hovering in the sky forever” and there are many ancient precious and well preserved frescoes... Have an exploration to its Main Hall (features a large statue of Buddha Shakyamuni), Assembly Hall (used for large gatherings and ceremonies and features a large statue of Guru Rinpoche) and Scripture Hall (the monks gather to study and recite Buddhist scriptures).

After the tour, drive to Darchen County for accommodation.

Attractions

3 sites

Transportation

coach

Dining

None

Accommodation

hotel in Darchen

Day 12 Darchen - Saga
Altitude: 4600m | Distance: 500km, about 8 hours’ drive

On this day, you'll drive from Darchen to Saga, passing through the windswept rural territory of Tibet. The road from Darchen to Saga is mostly unpaved and can be quite bumpy and dusty. However, the journey is well worth it, as you'll appreciate a variety of stunning landscapes, including high mountain passes, grasslands, and river valleys. You'll also enjoy breathtaking views of the Himalayas along the way.

As you drive, you'll pass through numerous small towns and villages, as well as camps of yak and sheep herders, giving you a glimpse into the daily life of the local people. You'll see nomads tending their herds, farmers working in their fields, and monks walking along the roadside. You'll have the opportunity to take a break along the way and stretch your legs, as well as stop at scenic viewpoints to take photos and enjoy the stunning scenery.

Stay overnight in Saga County.

Attractions

scenery on the way

Transportation

coach

Dining

None

Accommodation

hotel in Saga

Day 13 Saga - Sayka
Altitude: 4316m | Distance: 430km, about 7 hours’ drive

After enjoying breakfast in Saga Town, you will embark on a captivating journey towards Sayka, taking the picturesque G219 highway. As you travel along this route, be prepared to be mesmerized by the breathtaking scenery that unfolds before your eyes. The G219 highway is renowned for its stunning landscapes, including vast open plains, majestic mountains, and charming rural vistas.

Immerse yourself in the natural beauty as you drive through the winding roads, with each turn revealing a new and enchanting view. The journey itself becomes an experience to cherish, with opportunities to capture remarkable photographs and create lasting memories. Eventually, you will reach Sayka, a destination that welcomes you with its warm hospitality and unique charm. You will stay overnight in Sayka County.

Attractions

scenery on the way

Transportation

coach

Dining

Breakfast

Accommodation

hotel in Sayka

Day 14 Sayka - Sakya Monastery - Sakya
Altitude: 4000m | Distance: 150km, about 3 hours’ drive

On this day, you will have the opportunity to visit the famous Sakya Monastery. This monastery holds great historical significance and is considered the original Sakya Monastery. It is located in Sakya County, approximately 127 kilometers west of Shigatse. Sakya Monastery serves as the seat of the Sakya school, which is one of the four major schools of Tibetan Buddhism.

Founded in 1073, Sakya Monastery is not only a place of spiritual importance but also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is renowned for its remarkable architecture, deep-rooted history, and extensive collection of Buddhist texts. As you explore the monastery, you will encounter a massive complex adorned with fortress-like walls, picturesque courtyards, and intricately decorated halls. Inside, you will be captivated by the vast array of statues, thangkas (painted scrolls), ritual objects, and ancient Buddhist texts. One of the notable highlights is the Burde Gyaimalung, recognized as the largest book in the world. During your visit, you will have the opportunity to observe the daily routines of the monks, witness their prayer ceremonies, and gain insights into their way of life.

After the exploration, get back to your hotel in Sakya. 

Attractions

1 site

Transportation

coach

Dining

Breakfast

Accommodation

hotel in Sakya

Day 15 Sakya - Shigatse - Tashilhunpo Monastery - Lhasa (By Tourist Bus or Train)
Altitude: 3650m | Distance: 340km, about 7 hours’ drive

Altitude: 3650m | Distance: 340km, about 7 hours’ drive

On this day, you and your group will depart from Sakya to Shigatse. Upon arrival, you will pay a visit to Tashilhunpo Monastery. After that, take a train (about 2.5 hours) or take a vehicle (about 8 hours, 340km) back to Lhasa. Founded by His Holiness the 1st Dalai Lama, Gyalwa Gedun Drup in 1447, Tashilhunpo Monastery is the largest monastery in Tsang Area of Tibet. In Tashilhunpo Monastery, you can visit the traditional seat of successive Panchen Lamas, Tibet's second-highest incarnation. Pay a visit to the ancient tombs of the fourth and tenth Panchen Lama, as well as the chortens, which hold the bones and remains of the sacred Tibetan lamas. Learn more from your guide about Panchen Lamas and Dalai Lamas while appreciating the brilliant religious painting on Tibetan architecture, listening to the Tibetan Buddhism chanting by local monks, and even participating in the kora like locals. Don’t forget to hike up to the top of the monastery for a stunning bird’s eye view of the monastery itself and Shigatse City. 

Afterward, it is time to get back to Lhasa. Upon arrival, head back to your hotel in downtown Lhasa for a good rest.

Travel Tips: Please note that we will arrange for you to either take a train or a tourist vehicle back to Lhasa from Shigatse, depending on the prevailing conditions. We kindly request that you do not specify a particular mode of transportation, as we will make the necessary arrangements for your return journey.

Attractions

1 site

Transportation

coach or train

Dining

Breakfast

Accommodation

hotel in Lhasa

Day 16 Lhasa Departure | Hotel Check-out and Airport Transfer
Altitude: 3650m | Distance: 100km, about 1.5 hours’ drive

Altitude: 3650m | Distance: 100km, about 1.5 hours’ drive

It is time to end your 16-day Tibet Group tour. And your guide will escorts you to the airport/train station for your flight or train to next destination. 

Thank you for choosing Asia Odyssey Travel for your Tibet Tour, and we are always here working for you and hope to see you again for your next trip to China/Asia. Safe journey!

Attractions

none

Transportation

coach

Dining

Breakfast

Accommodation

hotel check-out and airport transfers

Choose Your Travel Date and Get Free Enquiry

Month Available Date Price Book The Tour
May May.17, 2024 from $2123 Free Enquiry
Jun Jun.14, 2024 from $2215 Free Enquiry
Jul Jul.14, 2024 from $2415 Free Enquiry
Aug Aug.12, 2024 from $2415 Free Enquiry
Sep Sep.11, 2024 from $2215 Free Enquiry
Oct Oct.11, 2024 from $2031 Free Enquiry

Price: What’s Included & What’s Excluded

From USD2031 per person
The above price is based on a group tour for 2 people sharing one standard double-bed room in 3-star hotels.
Price varies depending on travel date, group size, hotel class, program in your itinerary and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate.

What’s Included:

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Professional licensed English-speaking local guide
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Tourist Vehicle: 7-23seats (If it’s less than 4 travelers doing Lhasa city tour, we will let tour guide to take a taxi instead. Taxi fee will be at the tour guide expense.)
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Hotel accommodation with breakfasts (3-star standard)
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Meals: Breakfasts plus featured meals - Tibetan welcome banquet in Lhasa & The world’s highest altitude hot pot experience at EBC (if you take the tour to EBC).
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Admission tickets, activities listed in the itinerary
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Tibet Permits: Tibet Entry Permit, Alien Travel Permit, Border Pass, etc.
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Pick up and Drop off Service: The pick up and drop off service are free from 7:00am to 22:00pm on the pick up and drop off date.
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Oxygen and Water: A container of Oxygen per person for emergency use; 2 bottles of drinking water per person per day (300ml); 4L Medical oxygen cylinder with car
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Our service from tour planning, handling, operational and finishing your trip

What’s Excluded:

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International airfares
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Entry Visa fees
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Personal expenses
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Single Room Supplement
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Recommended optional activities
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Arrival/departure flights or train on the first and last day
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Tips or gratuities for guides and drivers

Hotel Selections for Tibet Group Tour

Hotel Detail Map
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Lhasa Recommended 3 Star Hotel
Shigatse Recommended 3 Star Hotel
EBC Accommodation

In a Tibet group tour, there are two main types of accommodation choices on a Tibet group tour: basic standard and comfortable. In major cities like Lhasa, there are a variety of accommodation options available, ranging from 3 star to 4 star hotels. In more remote areas, such as near Mount Everest or Mount Kailash, the accommodations may be more basic, with simple guesthouses or tented camps. We will email you the detailed hotel arrangement after your booking.

If there is a single room due to gender reasons, we will arrange a triple room (or double standard room with and extra bed) or pay the single room supplement by the yourself.

Important Trip Notes for Booking a Tibet Group Tour

Do I need to get a Tibet permit to visit Tibet? How long does it take to obtain?
All foreign travelers are required to obtain a Tibet Travel Permit to visit Tibet. The permit can only be applied for through a registered travel agency in Tibet (we are local based Tibet travel agency with office setting in Lhasa) and is required to purchase flight or train tickets to Tibet. The permit is necessary to enter Tibet and visit certain areas within the region, including Lhasa and Mount Everest Base Camp. Travelers should plan ahead and allow sufficient time for the permit application process, as it can take one to two weeks to obtain the necessary permits.
All foreign travelers are advised to make their bookings at least one week in advance and send the necessary documents to us for obtaining the permits. However, if you plan to visit Mount Kailash, it is recommended to book at least two weeks in advance, as it may take longer to obtain the necessary permits.
How Many Tourists Travel in a Small Group Tour? Where Are They From?
Typically, small group tours in Tibet will have 2-12 travelers, and you will have the opportunity to meet and travel with tourists from different parts of the world. This can be a great chance to make new friends and connect with people from different cultures and backgrounds.
Can I have my own group tour?
Yes, if you are traveling with a group of friends or with your family, you can customize your own group tour. Please contact your professional travel consultant to discuss and arrange a customized group tour that meets your needs and preferences.
Meals
“B” stands for breakfast. You will have it at your hotel in the morning.
“L” stands for lunch. The restaurants we will arrange for you are all designated tourist restaurants approved by local tourist administration bureau. All are in good sanitary conditions. Lunches are usually included if you have a full day tour in one destination. Your guide will assist you with ordering the dishes. If you will travel from one city to another, lunches are excluded and you can ask the guide for some suggestions about where and what to eat.
“D” means dinner. All dinners are excluded in the itinerary. You have the chance to taste some authentic Chinese food and local snacks.
If you have special dietary requirements (vegetarian, halal, kosher, Indian, or gluten-free), please let us know before your booking. We will try our best to take care of you.
Cancellation Policy
2 weeks before the departure: free cancellation;
1 week before the departure: 10% of the tour fare is charged;
Within a week before the departure: 15% of the tour fare is charged;
Cancel during the tour: You’ll get the refund of the tickets and accommodation fee that you don’t consume.

Latest Tibet Group Tours Reviews from Our Customers

Discover what our customers are saying about the latest Tibet Group Tours. Browse through their recent reviews and feedback on tour arrangements, guides, transportation, attractions, dining, hotels, and detailed itineraries to plan your own unforgettable China tour. View All Customers Reviews >>
Maziar
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I’m Maziar from Australia
I’m Maziar from Australia. We had a wonderful private tour guided by Asia Odyssey in June 2023. Issac from Asia Odyssey was very helpful all through out our trip. The trip was very well organised and well planned. Hotels perfectly located and tour guides and drivers in each city been very supportive and helpful. I hope I can go back to China to visit that wonderful land again and I will defend suggest Asia Odyssey to anyone searching for help and guide to visit china.
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Maziar
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I’m Maziar from Australia. We had a wonderful private tour guided by Asia Odyssey in June 2023. Issac from Asia Odyssey was very helpful all through ...
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Destination(s): Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Tibet, Chengdu/Sichuan

Date of Experience: Jul 07, 2023

Tour Customized by: Isaac

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Kathy
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Highly recommend Asia Odyssey Travel 

My experience with Asia Odyssey Travel was exceptional as they provided thorough assistance throughout my train tour, from start to finish. From my initial contact with Mike to the follow-up from Lucy, their service was fantastic. Mike maintained excellent communication throughout the entire process, and when I needed to make amendments to my train tickets, he promptly and efficiently resolved the changes. Everything went smoothly, and I couldn't find any faults with their service. I highly appreciate their dedication and professionalism in ensuring a seamless experience.

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Kathy
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My experience with Asia Odyssey Travel was exceptional as they provided thorough assistance throughout my train tour, from start to finish. From my in...
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Destination(s): Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Tibet

Date of Experience: Jun 23, 2023

Tour Customized by: JoJo

You May be Interested in This Tour: 16 Days Classic China, Panda & Holy Tibet Tour in Small Group

travelchina2018
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Wonderful Tibet trip with the help of Amy from Odyssey Travel
This 11 days tour in Tibet is really incredible and unforgettable organized by Amy and her team. Organization of this tour has been perfect, me and my husband were very lucky to join a group with very pleasant 3 group members, it is a ideal size of a group for a good harmony. We have all really appreciate our tour guide Pusto for his deep knowledge of the Tibetan civilization and religion, his very pleasant company and his permanent smile, he is more than a tour guide like a close friend. The time has been well managed by our tour guide to avoid loss time on road and arrived at EBC in time to enjoy the incredible view of Qomolangma before the sunset, really great! Namtso lake is incredibly beautiful too, we love every minute of it there : -)
Our contact girl Amy, we are very thankful to her for her patience and efficiency to obtain our Tibet visa and train tickets in time, this made us know how important her help and support has been to us. Also she followed up day by day on our health conditions, provided us tips on how to maintain the best of health on such altitudes and it worked, big kudos to Amy!
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travelchina2018
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This 11 days tour in Tibet is really incredible and unforgettable organized by Amy and her team. Organization of this tour has been perfect, me and my...
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Destination(s): Tibet

Date of Experience: Aug 15, 2018

Tour Customized by: Owen

You May be Interested in This Tour: 11 Days Tibet Nepal Overland Tour with Old Tingri to EBC Trek

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