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Trip Duration: 08 days
Trip Type: Tour
Trip Grade: Moderate
Min. Group Size: 2+
Trip Start: Kathmandu
Trip Ends: Kathmandu
Best Season: SEP-OCT-NOV MAR-APR-MAY, JUN-JUL-AUG
Meals: 3 times a day (breakfast, lunch and dinner)
Acommodation: 2-3 Star Accommodation in Kathmandu/2-3 Star Accommodation in Tibet
Tibet Fly in Fly out trip is ideal for those inadequate to see the tourist attractions of Tibet and Lhasa. You fly or drive across the Himalaya to Lhasa, where you have bounty of time to visit the main highlights in and around the town including Palace, the Norbulingka (the Dalai Lama’s summer palace) and the Jorkhang Temple which contains Jowo Shakyamuni, the most hallowed bust to all Tibetan Buddhists.
You also visit the major monasteries in the Lhasa Valley as well as Samye, Drepung and Sera. You then drive along the Friendship Highway to Nepal, one of the most impressive road journeys in the world. You visit the towns and monasteries in both Gyantse then have a spectacular drive across the Tibetan Plateau with great views of Everest from the north side and Shishmapangma, the only 8,000m mountain situated totally in Tibet.
Early morning you are transferred to the airport to board the plane for the flight over the Himalaya to Lhasa. If the weather is clear there is a wonderful view of Everest, Nuptse, Lhotse, Makalu, Kanchenjunga and other peaks en route. On arrival at Gonggar airport (which is 90 kilometers from Lhasa), you meet your vehicle and drive east along the broad Yarlung Tsangpo valley to Tsedang (3400m.). After checking in to your hotel, you drive south to see the reputed oldest building in Tibet, the Yumbu Lakhang, a beautiful castle-like dwelling and monastery, dramatically perched on a spur looking out over the fertile valley below. If time permits you may be able to visit a small monastery close to Tsedang, or an interesting carpet factory where you can see the whole process of carpet making.
This day you visit Potala Palace, Norbulinka, Jorkhang Temple & Barkhor street. One of the highlights is the visit to the symbol of Tibet; the Potala Palace set high on Red Hill, the winter home of the Dalai Lama until 1959. The most sacred temple in Lhasa is the Lokhang, where people come from all over Tibet to visit and pray in this spiritual heart of the country. It was used as a military kitchen during the Cultural Revolution but has now been beautifully restored, with many priceless thangkas and statues adorning the chapels, and magnificent gilded roofs.
Another great treasure is the Norbulingka – the old summer palace of the Dalai Lama. Now you visit Jorkhang Temple, the center of the Tibetan Buddhism and the sacred land of Buddhist followers where innumerable pilgrims come for worship every day. The temple, built in 647, is the earliest wood-and-masonry structure still existing in Tibet. Surrounding the Jorkhang Temple is the bustling Barkhor Street which is the religious and social focus of Lhasa. Around the Barkhor street there are numerous stalls selling all sorts of handicrafts: brightly colored boots and fur-lined hats, silver and turquoise jewelry, rosaries, prayer flags and charms, as well as beautiful Tibetan carpets and all manner of ordinary household ware. Stay overnight at hotel.
Drive to Gyantse via Yamdrok Lake, after visiting Kumbum & Pelku Chode, continuely drive to Shigatse. Today is a full day picturesque drive crossing over a colorful Yamdrok Lake and Kambala Pass at 4,794 m and Karola Pass at 5,010m. In Gyantse you spend time visiting the Pelke Chode Monastery and and the 35m high famous Kumbum stupa in Gyantse packed with exquisite Tibetan sculpture and paintings, a stunning architectural wonder in Tibet. As Gyantse just fades away from your sight, Shigatse becomes clearer because it’s just 1 1/2 hours’ driving (98km).
Shigatse is situated near the junction of the Ngang and Yarlung Tsangpo (Brahmaputra) rivers, with many traditional low ceiling, flat roofed, mud brick Tibetan houses, but quite a lot of ugly modern Chinese buildings as well. It is home of the Tashilunpo monastery, traditional seat of the Panchen Lama, and one of the great centers of Tibetan Buddhism. Shigatse also has an interesting bazaar, where various traditional items can often be found at more or less reasonable prices. Shigatse has always been an important trade and administration center and also has political and religious significance, once being the seat of the Panchen Lama. The town is essentially divided into two parts: the old Tibetan style area in the city and the concrete, modern Chinese part of the town. The older streets and alleys here are very pleasant to wander and there are a few sights of interest to warrant a stay of a day or two.
You drive from Shigatse to Rongbuk via Lhatse and Tingri. Leaving Shigatse you climb steadily to the top of a 4050m. pass, then follow valleys containing a few small villages before climbing to the Tsuo La (4500m.). From here the road drops steeply down towards Lhatse where the main road from western Tibet comes in. Another climb through virtually unpopulated high altitude moorland brings you to the summit of the Gyatso La (5220m.), the watershed between Tibet and the Indian sub-continent. After a long descent you arrive at Xegar or New Tingi. Scenically this is one of the most spectacular days of the trip. Leaving New Tingri you head towards Rongbuk.
Excursion to Everest Base Camp by local carriage and return to Rongbuk, same day drive back to Shigatse. It requires two hours trek from The Rongbuk Monastery to reach the base of the highest peak on earth The North Face of Mount Everest (8848m.) or Mount Quomolangma in Tibetan. Explore the base camp and The Ronghu Glacier. But the views are stupendous on a clear day, and as it exhibits the feature of a huge sweep of the Himalaya range including peaks over 8000, Makalu, Lhotse, Everest, Gyachung and Cho Oyu. When you finally get to Base Camp, the first sight of the mighty Everest simply leaves you speechless. All the hardship you bear along the way makes sense at this while. You return to Rongbuk Monastery and drive back to Shigatse.
Visit Tashilunbo Monastery and drive back to Lhasa via northern road. Unlike most religious buildings in Tibet, the Tashilunbo monastery was largely untouched during the Cultural Revolution, and contains numerous impressive chapels and prayer halls. You would be amazed to see the giant statue of the Maitreya Buddha that contains 280 kg. of gold. The Tashilhunpo Monastery does justice to the term monastic city. It was founded in 1447 by Tsong Khapa’s nephew and disciple, Gendundrub, who was the first Dalai Lama. Under the fourth Panchen Lama, it was substantially enlarged and became an important cultural and religious site. The main chapel contains a huge, 26 meter-high statute of the future Buddha. The monastery is grandly decorated with arts, ancient scriptures and scroll paintings. After your visit to Tashiulunbo Monastery you drive back to Lhasa via northern road.
Full day excursion to Namtso Lake, so called the “Sky Lake”.
You are transferred to Gonggar airport, Lhasa and fly to Kathmandu. Your tour in Tibet ends! The flight will give you an eyeful view of mountains such as Mt. Kanchenjunga (8586m.), Mt. Everest (8848m.), Mt. Makalu (8463m.) and others.