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11 Days Private Tour Lhasa – Yamdrok – Gyantse – Shigatse – Lhasa – Trekking from Damxung to Nam Tso – Tsurpu - Lhasa
The first station is Lhasa, where pilgrims from all over the country want to rush into. Together with them we visit Potala Palace the holy land and landmark of Tibet, and Jokhang the holiest monastery in Tibet. Then we will pass by the beautiful Yamdrok Lake and cross over the Karo La (5.010 m) (La=Pass) and Simi La before we reach Gyantse and Shigatse, where we visit the famous monasteries Pelkor and Tashilunpo separately.

After 5 days altitude acclimatization we drive northward to Damxung. Our trek from Damxung to Nam Tso Lake passes through glaciated valleys and mountains of the Nyenchen Thanglha range to the pebbled shores of the lake. During the summer months the wide open spaces are filled with nomad herders and their herds of yaks and tents - an intoxicating sight. We shall also visit sacred spots, holy shrines, and the bird sanctuary. Nam Tso, or the heavenly lake lies 190 km north-west of Lhasa at an elevation of 4718 m and is the largest salt-water lake in Tibet. Surrounded by spectacular snow-covered mountains, it is a place of desolate beauty and the site of a holy hermitage that draws pilgrims from all over Tibet. Finished the trekking we set up tent camp by the lake and spend one day to enjoy the beautiful and peaceful salty lake, and walk on the vast meadow to visit Tashi Dorje, a cave temple of Nyingma Sect at the southeast of the Tashi peninsula. Then we leave Nam Tso pass by Yangbajing to Lhasa.
Highlights
Tibet Trekking from Damxung to Nam Tso Lake
DAY
1

Arrive in Lhasa

Welcome in Tibet – the roof of the world

Today arrive in Lhasa (3650 m), the capital of Tibet, transfer to hotel. Stay at the hotel for adapting to the high altitude. It is helpful to take things easy for the first few days, and try to drink some water.

Overnight at 3*Yak Hotel
Barkhor Street
Barkhor Street
DAY
2

Lhasa

Potala Palace – landmark of Lhasa, Jokhang and Barkhor Street

In the morning visit Potala, which was originally constructed in 637 by Songtsen Gampo, the first king of the united Tibet, and later expanded and served as the winter residence of the Dalai Lamas as well as the religious-political nexus of traditional Tibet. The crowds of pilgrims, innumerable magnificent murals, Buddhist statues, scriptures and rare treasures altogether create a dense religious and art atmosphere that impresses every visitor. In the afternoon visit Jokhang monastery, the center of the Tibetan Buddhism and the sacred land of Buddhist followers where thousands of pilgrims come for worship everyday. The temple, built in 647, is the earliest wood-and-masonry structure still existing in Tibet. Walk on the Barkhor street surrounding Jokhang, a big free market with its prolific stalls for selling local specialties.

Overnight at 3*Yak Hotel
Breakfast
Jokhang Monastery
Jokhang Monastery
DAY
3

Lhasa

Panoramic view over Potala, Norbulingka, Debate in Sera

In the morning visit Parla Lupu Cave Monastery, located on the slopes of Yaowang Mountain, was built in the 7th century. It is 22m high and from here you can have a wonderful panoramic view over Potala palace. Afterwards visit Norbulinka, the summer residence of the Dalai Lamas. In the afternoon visit Sera Monastery, which was created in 1419 and has always been an important Buddhist seminary. It is also one of the six master monasteries of the Gelugpa. As rose are planted everywhere in the monastery, it is also called “the court of wild rose”. Today still 200 lamas live in there. You have the opportunity to experience the famous monks' "Buddhism scriptures debates". Public religious debates are part of the education of monks.

Overnight at 3*Yak Hotel
Breakfast
Debate in Sera Monastery
Debate in Sera Monastery
DAY
4

Lhasa – Gyantse – Shigatse

Karo La Pass and Glacier, holy lake Yamdrok, Palkhor with Pagoda Kumbum

Drive to Gyantse. On the Kamba La (4796 m) have a fantastic view of the holy lake Yamdrok (4,441 m), one of the three holy lakes in Tibet and the largest habitat of waterfowls in south Tibet. On arriving, visit Pelkor Monastery as well as the splendid Kumbum Stupa (100-Thousand-Buddha Pagoda) nearby, both of them built in the 15th century and situated in the northwestern edge of Gyantse. This typical Tibetan Buddhist monastery is the only one large building complex in Tibet that old monastery and stupas are completely preserved and characterized as a monument. It is recorded 14,000 kilograms of copper was used to make the 8-meter-high sitting statue of Sakyamuni Buddha housed in the grand hall of the temple. The 8-storey stupa is 42m high and 62m in diameters contains a total of 76 chapels with wonderful murals revered by art scholars around the world. Afterwards drive about 90 kilometers to Shigatse (3880m), the second largest city with 40,000 inhabitants in Tibet and the traditional capital of the Tsang.

356 km
6 hours 41 minutes
Overnight at 4*Mulunlazong Hotel
Breakfast
Yamdrok Lake
Yamdrok Lake
DAY
5

Shigatse – Lhasa

Tashilunpo Monastery in Shigatse, traditional manufacture for Tibetan incense

In the morning visit Tashilunpo monastery of Gelug Sect, the seat of the Panchen Lama built in 1447 and one of the six grand monasteries in Tibet. The monastery houses a giant statue of the Maitreya Buddha, the biggest gilded statue of Maitreya (Buddha of the future) in China, and a tomb of the 4th Panchen Lama containing masses of jewels and gold. In Tibet Buddhism, Panchen Lama is just the reincarnation of Maitreya Buddha. In the afternoon drive back to Lhasa. On the way visit a traditional manufacture for Tibetan incense in small town Tunba by the Yarlung Tsangpo River.

273 km
4 hours 58 minutes
Overnight at 3*Yak Hotel
Breakfast
Tashilunpo Monastery
Tashilunpo Monastery
DAY
6

Lhasa – Damxung, begin with trekking

Visit a small monastery

Approximately 3-hour drive along Qinghai-Tibet Road to Damxung (4130m), trekking begins here. Today you make only a small trekking through a beautiful pasture, and then drive to a monastery.

66 km
3 hours 3 minutes
Camping
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Tsurpu
Tsurpu
DAY
7

Trekking

Crossing a glacier valley

Today you will hike through a glacier valley. Afterwards you will reach some nomadic tents. Live in tents.

Trekking 7-8 hours
Camping
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Trekking to Nam Tso
Trekking to Nam Tso
DAY
8

Trekking

Behind Tashi Dorje Monastery and Nam Tso Lake

Walking through Kong La Pass, where you can enjoy a beautiful view over the Nam Tso Lake and the Nyenchen Thangla Mountains. Then you walk to a wide pool, and continue trekking through a beautiful pasture.

Trekking 6-7 hours
Camping
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Trekking to Nam Tso
Trekking to Nam Tso
DAY
9

Trekking

Nach Tashi Dorje Kloster und Nam Tso See

Trekking along the pasture and past some nomadic tents and herds. Lunch at a lake. Then follow the Jeep-Piste to Tashi Dorje Monastery on Nam Tso Lake. Nam Tso Lake covers an area of 1920 square kilometers, is the largest saltwater lake, with an extension of 70km from east to west, 30km from north to south, and its altitude is 4700m. According to legend, this holy lake and the sacred mountain Nyenchentangla are the lovers, who together protect the pastures and herds. Live in tents.

Trekking 7-8 hours
Camping
Breakfast Lunch Dinner
Nam Tso Lake
Nam Tso Lake
DAY
10

Nam Tso Lake – Tsurpu - Lhasa

Tashi Peninsula, Pass Lhachen La, Tsurpu Monastery

Early morning trekking on the Tashi Peninsula and completing a circle around the sacred mountain whose cliffs have been eroded in recent centuries. On the street are the Marnyi Stones. You have the opportunity to visit the nomads in the Yakshaare woven tents. Afternoon drive over Lhachen La and Damxung to Lhasa. On the way detour to Tsurpu Monastery (4300 m), 60 km northwest of Lhasa on the upper reaches of the river Tsurpu. Tsurpu Monastery is the main monastery of the Karma Kagyu sect of Tibetan Buddhism. Tsurpu was established in 1189 by Duesum Khyenpa, a pupil of Gampopa and the first Karmapa. He introduced the principle of reincarnation into Tibet. He told his disciples that he would reincarnate and pointed out the location of the second Karmapas reborn. In contrast to Yellow Caps (Gelug) the Karmapa Kagye are regarded as the Black Hat. Visit the Tsurpu Monastery, if time is available, hike on the pilgrim's way around the monastery (about 1 hour).

274 km
5 hours 31 minutes
Overnight at the 3*Yak Hotel
Breakfast Lunch
Nam Tso Lake
Nam Tso Lake
DAY
11

Leave Tibet

Travel to next destination

Today transfer to airport or railway station, leave Tibet.
Breakfast
Barkhor Street
Barkhor Street
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Information
Hotel, program and itinerary are subjected to change with prior notice.
We must point out that you counter a basic tourism infrastructure in this region. You overnight in tent during trekking. Long journeys on bad roads and trekking on high altitude and delays require good physical fitness, resilience and flexibility of the participants. Program and route changes due to unforeseen events are expressly reserved. If you desire the unknown and have an understanding of contingency, this is the right trip for you.
More Impressions
Barkhor Street | Photo by Liu Bin
Barkhor Street | Photo by Liu Bin
Potala Palace | Photo by Liu Bin
Potala Palace | Photo by Liu Bin
Norbulinka | Photo by Liu Bin
Norbulinka | Photo by Liu Bin
Debate in Sera Monastery | Photo by Liu Bin
Karola Glacier | Photo by Liu Bin
Palkhor Monastery | Photo by Liu Bin
Palkhor Monastery | Photo by Liu Bin
Tashilunpo Monastery | Photo by Liu Bin
Nam Tso | Photo by Liu Bin
Nam Tso | Photo by Liu Bin
Nam Tso | Photo by Liu Bin
Nam Tso | Photo by Liu Bin
Nam Tso and Nianqingtanggula Mountain | Photo by Liu Bin