Tibet has been considered as being way off – in the middle of nowhere, inaccessible and very difficult to arrange a comfortable journey. Our Tibet Encounters is an 8 days experience with all the comforts that is possible. Lhasa, the capital of Tibet where we kick off is accessible by the new train, The Lhasa Express - an engineering marvel. It offers breath-taking scenery and is the world's highest passenger railroad (Tanggula Pass at 5072m) and the world's highest railroad tunnel (Fenghuoshan - 4905m). Lhasa can be reached by air from Beijing and Chengdu in China and from Kathmandu in Nepal.
|Tour Duration||:||08 days|
|Min. Tour Size||:||05 persons|
|Max. Tour Size||:||08 persons|
|Includes international air|
|Tour Price (from)||:||US$|
Day 01: Arrive Lhasa
Arrival Lhasa the heart and soul of Tibet. We are welcomed and transferred to our hotel. Balance of the day is free to help us acclimatized to the Tibetan altitude.
Overnight: Hotel Kyichu Lhasa (3 nights) (B)
Day 02: Lhasa
We start with a visit to Drepung to see one of the world’s largest monastery. Built in 1416, ranked as Tibet’s largest monastery with 7770 monks. For over 500 years Drepung served as the major pillar of the theocratic state, serving as the main political headquarters for the Gelugpa sect of Tibetan Buddhism. It also served as the residence of the Dalai Lamas until the Potala Palace was constructed in 1645. From here we proceed to Jokhang Temple, the oldest and the most revered structure in Tibet dating back to 639 when construction was initiated by king Songtsen Gampo to house a Buddha image Akshobhya brought to Tibet by his Nepalese wife. But now, the main statue in this temple is of the Sakyamuni, which was a gift from his Chinese Princess Won Cheng. Pilgrims from all over Tibet come to worship here and prostrate themselves in full length in front of the main doors of' the temple. Then we go to Barkhor Market, the word Barkhor refers to the middle of the three concentric holy circuits around the Jokhang. The Barkhor Circuit runs through the heart of the old city where life has changed little since medieval times. (B)
Day 03: Lhasa
We visit the well known Potala Palace - the cardinal landmark and a structure of massive proportion. This symbol of Tibet housing 3000 rooms is an architectural Gem built in the colossal monastic style of Central Tibet in the 17th C by Gyelwa Ngapa the 5th Dalai Lama. It stands 300m above the valley atop Marpo RI hill. Next we visit the Sera Monastery - one of the prettiest in Lhasa. Founded in 1419 it is one of the three great monasteries of Tibet. In its heyday, Sera hosted a huge monastic population and five colleges. From here we proceed to the summer palace of successive Dalai Lamas since the 7th century. Every year during the 7th lunar month the Norbulingkha houses the Shotgun festival. (B)
Day 04: Lhasa/Gyantse (Drive 260 km/157mi)
We drive to Gyantse via Yamdrok, which literally means, the Turquoise Lake. As we drive through the Kamba La pass we have a beautiful view of the lake. At Gyantse, the third most important city in Tibet we visit the Palkhor Monastery that houses monks from different orders (Gelugpa, Sakyapa and Kahdampa) in harmony. Pakor also has Kumbum Stupa, one of the most revered and unusual architectural masterpieces. It was built in 1440 and is in the shape of a 108-sided mandala. Kumbum means 10,000 images. The Stupa raises over four symmetrical floors and is surmounted by a gold dome. The dome rises like a crown over four sets of eyes that gazes serenely out in the cardinal directions of the compass.
Overnight: Hotel Jian Zhan (1 night) (B)
Day 05: Gyantse/Shigatse (Drive 90kms)
A senic drive to Shigatse the Second largest city in Tibet and capital of the traditional Tibetan province of Tsang. We arrive at Tashilunpo Monastery which was founded in 1447 by the first Dalai Lama. This monastery houses the statue Maitreya Buddha (the Buddha of the Future) weighing 275 Kg made of gold and 26 meters in height.
Overnight: Hotel Mansarovar (1 night) (B)
Day 06: Shigatse/Tsedang
We start the day with a visit of Samye Monastery – the most popular destination for travelers in this region. Samye is in the middle of the sandy Samye valley and approached via a beautiful river crossing. Samye was Tibet’s first monastery and has a history that spans over 1200 years. This monastery is designed to represent the Buddhist Universe and many of the buildings in the courtyard are cosmological symbols.
Overnight: Hotel Yarung River (2 nights) (B)
Day 07: Tsedang
An interesting day ahead as we visit one of the oldest buildings in Tibet - the Yambulakhang overlooking the Yarlung Valley. It is a tapered finger like structure sprouting from a craggy ridge. We then proceed to Tsedang and see Trandruk Monastery. An ancient tale says that the site was a large lake, which Songstengampo tried to drain to build a city but was stopped by a ferocious dragon. He then retreated to a cave and meditated for 14 years after which he came out as an eagle, slew the dragon, dried the lake and was able to build the town and monastery. The Tombs of the Ancient Tibetan Kings at Chongye Burial Mounds represent one of the few historical sites in the country that give evidence of the pre-Buddhist culture in Tibet. Most of the Kings interred here are now firmly associated with the rise of Buddhism, but the methods of their interment point to the Bon Faith. Sky Burial is the most popular means of disposing of the dead these days but recent archaeological evidence seems to suggest that burial might have been quite widespread in the
time of the Yarlung Kings and may not have been limited to royalty. (B)
Day 08: Departure
Alter an unforgetable Tibetan Experience, we are transferred to the airport for our departure flight. (B)
This tour combines perfectly with our Himalayan Sanctuaries tour.
B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner
English Speaking Departures (Please contact us for information on French, German, Italian and Spanish speaking departures).
This is a suggested program for private tours. Please contact us for details
Tour PriceWe accept payment in US $ (US Dollars), CA $ (Canadian Dollars) or equivalent EURO (for clients outside North America). Bestway Tours & Safaris offers conversion rate protection. Once full payment has been received, and no modification has been made to the tour itinerary, we will honour that rate. For complete payment procedures, please click here
|Departure(s)||Per Person on Twin Sharing||Single Room Supplement|
Estimated International Airfare (International airfare is NOT included in this tour)
This tour operates on a minimum of 05 and a maximum of 08 participants
If you would like to have a tour on dates other than the above ones or with a customised itinerary, please contact us and we will be happy to work out an exclusive program for you.
You may e-mail us at email@example.com or call 1-604-264-7378. Residents of U.S.A./Canada may call us toll free at 1-800-663-0844.