Embark on a breathtaking adventure through the Himalayan heights and explore the mystical city of Lhasa, Tibet. Our comprehensive journey will take you through the awe-inspiring landscapes and cultural wonders of this unique region, ensuring an unforgettable experience. From the moment you arrive in Lhasa, resting at 3,650 meters above sea level, you’ll be captivated by the grandeur of the Potala Palace, an iconic ancient palace perched high above the city.
As you travel through Tibet, you’ll encounter unique Tibetan villages, the Yarlung Zangbo River and serene cowhide boats navigating the world’s highest river. Guided by experienced local tour guides, you’ll discover the rich history and spirituality that permeates this land.
This 15-day adventure is packed with immersive experiences, from visiting sacred monasteries to hiking along pristine lakes and glaciers. The journey will take you to the base camp of the world’s highest peak, Mount Everest. Witness incredible natural beauty and vibrant cultural traditions at every turn.
Day 1: Arrival in Lhasa – Acclimatization
Your Gateway to the Roof of the World: Lhasa
Upon your arrival in Lhasa, a city elevated at an altitude of 3,650 meters, the journey to the mystical Tibetan plateau commences. One cannot truly experience Tibet without setting foot in Lhasa and gazing upon the resplendent Potala Palace. As you disembark from the Lhasa airport or train station, your burdens, both physical and emotional, are entrusted to the capable hands of our dedicated and knowledgeable tour guide. Thus begins your intimate encounter with the heart of Lhasa.
En Route to the City: A Glimpse of Authentic Tibet
Your voyage from the airport reveals scenic Tibetan villages, the magnificent Yarlung Zangbo River (the world’s highest river), and the iconic cowhide boats navigating its waters. With your tour guide’s assistance, your hotel check-in proceeds smoothly. There, a delectable Tibetan lunch awaits, and a restful interlude in the comfort of your hotel room allows you to acclimatize to the high plateau’s conditions while recharging your vitality.
As dusk falls, a leisurely stroll around the Potala Palace Square unveils the majestic palaces, ancient structures, modern fountains, and the serene presence of monks amidst vibrant fountains. In this tranquil setting, you’re encouraged to slow your pace, ease your mind, and, after a leisurely walk, retire to your hotel for a restful night. These initial moments in Lhasa will gradually ease your body into the plateau’s unique atmosphere. Tashi Delek!
Day 2: Lhasa City Exploration – Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and Barkhor Street
Morning Glory: Potala Palace
In the morning, the timeless grandeur of the Potala Palace awaits exploration. Located atop Red Mountain at an altitude of 3,700 meters, it stands as the world’s highest ancient palace-style architectural complex. The Potala Palace was established by Zangampo, Tibet’s 33rd generation Zampusong, in the 7th century AD when he shifted the Tibetan capital to Lhasa. This iconic structure embodies Tibetan history and wisdom.
Towering palaces and a sense of grandeur captivate the senses. Ascend the 1,080-step staircase and embrace an elevated perspective of Lhasa, immersing yourself in the breathtaking scenery. With the accompaniment of a professional guide, delve into the secrets and religious significance of the Potala Palace.
Afternoon Reverence: Jokhang Temple
The afternoon calls for a visit to the Jokhang Temple, a place of profound spiritual importance to Tibetan Buddhists. The saying goes, “One has not truly been to Lhasa unless they’ve visited the Jokhang Temple.” With a history spanning over 1,300 years, it holds the highest esteem in Tibetan Buddhism. This is an opportunity to free your mind and absorb the weight of this storied history. Upon concluding your visit, don’t forget to circumambulate the Jokhang Temple clockwise, dispelling misfortunes and experiencing the power of Tibetan Buddhism once more.
Leisure in Lhasa: Unhurried Moments
While in Lhasa, allow the rhythms of life to slow down. Navigate to the handicraft market along [Bajiao Street] for thoughtful souvenir selections, or meander aimlessly and serendipitously discover a charming teahouse. Settle beside a window and relish the tranquillity, as you sip tea and savour the sunny ambience beneath Lhasa’s cerulean sky. Let the warmth of the sun dispel all worldly worries and negativity.
Note: Tickets for the Potala Palace are subject to pre-purchase with limited visiting times. Your itinerary will be adjusted flexibly based on your scheduled visit time. Prior to entering the Potala Palace, a security screening is conducted, and the carriage of hazardous items is strictly prohibited. Photography is not permitted within the Potala Palace.
Day 3: Lhasa – Yanghu Lake – Shigatse (105km to Yanghu Lake, 245km to Shigatse)
Embracing Natural Wonders and Ancient Monastic Treasures
Following a wholesome breakfast, your journey continues to Yanghu Lake. Your route involves an ascent to the Gangbala Pass at an elevation of 4,800 meters, granting you a panoramic view of the resplendent Yanghu Lake, which you’ll later descend to explore up close. After lunch in Nangkazi, your expedition takes you to the Karola Glacier, celebrated as China’s most picturesque glacier. Subsequently, a visit to Gyantse Castle is scheduled, concluding with a pilgrimage to the Tashilhunpo Monastery, the official abode of the Panchen Lama.
Day 4: Shigatse – Qudang – Yupa Village (350km)
Chasing Himalayan Heights and Majestic Peaks
As morning light breaks, your journey commences towards Xindingri County via Lazi, offering vistas of the awe-inspiring beauty of the Himalayan peaks, including the legendary Mount Everest. The route takes you over the lofty Gyatso La Pass, standing at an impressive 5,248 meters above sea level. You will have the opportunity to capture the grandeur of these magnificent peaks at 120 different vantage points. Your day concludes as you reach Youpa Village via Qudang, an essential step to adapt to the higher altitudes of the Tibetan plateau.
Day 5: Youpa Village – Xiaowucuo (4677 meters)
Immersed in the Majesty of the Tibetan Plateau
In the morning, leisure is granted, allowing time for rest and the coordination of supplies designated for transport by yaks. Only essentials, such as drinking water and snacks for the day, need to be carried. Your hike from Youpa Village commences around 11 o’clock, leading you up gentle slopes, beneath the ever-shifting clouds and mists that grace these mountainous landscapes. The radiant Tibetan sunshine will leave no doubt that you have truly entered Tibet. The day’s adventure concludes as you set up camp along the shores of Xiaowucuo Lake.
Distance Covered: 10 kilometers Altitude Gained: 900 meters
Incorporate the itinerary details into your journey, and let the fascination of Tibet’s extraordinary landscapes and sacred places engulf your senses, ensuring a truly transformative experience.
Day 6: Xiaowucuo – Xiaowula Pass (4900 meters) – Zhuoxiamu (4030 meters)
The Verdant Enchantment of Gama Valley
Commencing your day at 10 AM, your journey takes you over the Xiaowula Pass and down into the breathtaking Zhuoxiamu Valley, marking the starting point of Gama Valley. Here, a rich tapestry of lush vegetation, babbling streams, and distant snow-capped mountains unfold, resembling a magnificent landscape painting.
Distance Covered: 14 kilometers Altitude Gained: 350 meters Altitude Descended: 900 meters
Day 7: Zhuoxiamu – Cuolang Lake – Xianon Ranch – Tangxiang Observation Deck (4510 meters)
Discovering the Vistas of Gama Valley
Starting your day, you ascend from Zhuoxiamu, winding through pristine virgin forests where you’ll witness a distinct vertical distribution of vegetation. Reaching the ridge, a panoramic view of the entire Gama Valley emerges. With a touch of luck, you might even encounter the majestic Makalu Peak (8463 meters). By noon, you’ll arrive at Cuolang Lake, encircled by snow-clad peaks.
The lake’s waters flow into the Gama Valley through an outlet, creating a stunning reflection of the valley’s snow-capped ends. In the afternoon, you ascend a pass and reach Shanon Ranch, where colourful wildflowers adorn the landscape. The path then leads you to the Tangxiang Observation Deck, your camp for the night.
Distance Covered: 12 kilometers Altitude Gained: 550 meters
Day 8: Tangxiang Observation Deck – Badang – Oga – Baidang (4950 meters)
Traversing Oga Grassland’s Zigzag Mountain Roads
Your day unfolds as you descend along steep, zigzag mountain roads to Badang in Oga Grassland. The valley and glacial riverbed, appearing on the right side during your descent, represent the upper source of Gama Valley. You will navigate rocky terrain and continue on your journey to reach today’s camp in Baidang. Rest well and recharge your energies for the demanding day that lies ahead.
Distance Covered: 11 kilometers Altitude Descended: 350 meters Altitude Gained: 450 meters
Embrace these captivating terrains and surreal landscapes as your journey through Tibet continues.
Day 9: Baidang – Everest East Slope Base Camp – Baidang
An Everest Challenge: East Slope Base Camp
Prepare for a challenging day as you make the journey from your camp to the renowned east slope of Mount Everest Base Camp and back. The trek presents you with a rocky and gravelly ascent, with a steep slope of around 45 degrees. Along the way, the view of Everest’s southern face and the majestic glacier on the north slope of Mount Zhuo (7804 meters) will leave you in awe.
Reaching the east slope Base Camp is a rare achievement, as it sees fewer visitors and lacks prominent signage. This pilgrimage, completed before dusk, allows you to explore a part of Everest not commonly accessible. Alternatively, you may choose to explore the scenic beauty surrounding your camp.
Distance Covered: Approximately 18 kilometres
Day 10: Baidang – Ega – Tangxiang Observation Deck (4510 meters)
Retrace Your Steps
Today, you will retrace your path, journeying back to the Tangxiang Observation Deck for a well-deserved rest.
Distance Covered: Approximately 14 kilometres
Day 11: Tangxiang Observation Deck – Cuoxuerenma (5013 meters)
Journey to Cuoxuerenma
Your route takes you through a landscape of highs and lows, leading to the day’s camp, Cuoxuerenma, aptly named “Jade Mountain” beneath the snow-capped peaks. In the distance, gaze upon the mighty Mount Everest, Lhotse Peak (8516 meters), and Makalu Peak (8463 meters). Nearby, you’ll also spot an unclimbed 7000-meter peak, adding an air of mystery and adventure to your surroundings.
Distance Covered: Approximately 11 kilometres
Day 12: Cuoxuerenma – Langmala Pass (5344 meters) – Lunzhulin Village
The Highest Point: Langmala Pass
In the morning, set off on a challenging climb, conquering the highest point of your journey, the Langmala Pass, standing tall at an impressive altitude of 5344 meters. As you continue your trek, you’ll cross yet another pass exceeding 5000 meters. Your path leads you to the enchanting Lazecuo, a deep lake before you arrive at the welcoming Lunzhulin Village in the afternoon.
Distance Covered: Approximately 21 kilometres
Your incredible journey has led you through some of the most awe-inspiring and challenging landscapes. With Mount Everest as your backdrop, this adventure will forever remain etched in your memory as a testament to the allure of the great outdoors.
Day 13: Lunzhulin Village – Tashi Dzong – Shigatse
Farewell to the Himalayas
The morning finds you packing your belongings and embarking on a bus journey to visit the legendary Everest Base Camp once more. Afterwards, as the sun kisses the five peaks of over 8000 meters, including the mighty Mount Everest, it becomes time to bid adieu to these awe-inspiring heights. Returning to G318, you journey back to Shigatse in the evening. Here, you can cleanse yourself of the weariness, the varied flavours of your adventures, and the strains of the journey. Finally, enjoy a peaceful night’s rest.
Day 14: Shigatse – Lhasa
Today’s itinerary is relaxed and straightforward. A 5.5-hour drive along the G318 road will bring you back to Lhasa. This is your final opportunity to come together as a team, sharing stories of your adventures, the joys and pains, and savouring the bittersweet atmosphere as you prepare to bid farewell to one another.
Day 15: Lhasa, Tibet…
Farewell to the Holy City
On your last day, take a final tour of the sacred city. Then, following the Lhasa Valley, make your way to Gonggar Airport or the train station, marking the end of your incredible journey.
Departure Dates & Pricing (Per Person):
- August 7
- Three-star hotel: RMB 19,000
- Four-star hotel: RMB 19,450
- Single room: RMB 800 (three-star) / RMB 1,250 (four-star)
- September 25
- Three-star hotel: RMB 19,800
- Four-star hotel: RMB 20,700
- Single room: RMB 850 (three-star) / RMB 1,750 (four-star)
- Tibet travel permit and all necessary passes
- Ticket fees for all tourist attractions in the itinerary
- Experienced Tibetan English-speaking tour guide
- Comfortable vehicles (7-29-seater tour buses or commercial vehicles depending on the group size)
- Accommodation as listed in the itinerary (3 nights in Lhasa, 2 nights in Shigatse, 2 nights at Lunzhulin Village Guest House, and 7 nights in tents)
- Meals as specified in the itinerary
- Camping equipment: tents, sleeping bags, mattresses, and crutches
- Chef, yaks, yak handlers, and an assistant
- Travel accidental casualty insurance
- First aid kit
- Drinking water, oxygen, etc.
- Tibetan special welcome dinner
Services Not Included:
- Domestic flights/trains not listed in the itinerary (booking services available upon request)
- Meals not specified in the itinerary
- Tips for tour guides, drivers, and assistants
- Personal expenses such as laundry, phone bills, snacks, and soft drinks (please avoid alcohol during your Tibet trip)