Enjoy Chengdu leisurely daily life, Kuanzhai Xiangzi, drink tea in People’s Park
In the morning arrival in Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, home town of giant panda. Picked up by the local guide at airport and transfer to hotel. In the afternoon stroll in the beautiful old block of Chengdu - Wide Alley and Narrow Alley (Kuan Xiangzi and Zhai Xiangzi), they are the relics of the Manchurian garrison since 1718 and consist of 3 parallel lanes with the old classical houses, which are unique in southern China just like the northern Chinese architectural style presented by Hutong. After a careful renovation in June 2008, the pubs, teahouses, restaurants and guesthouses concentrate here, and in no time at all, it becomes the "lobby of leisure capital Chengdu". A walk here gives you a first impression of the "city of loafers". Then visit the People’s Park in the city center, have a seat in an old teahouse, enjoy your covered-bowl tea in a comfortable environment with bamboo chair and bamboo table, the tea culture of Chengdu is well known throughout China.
Overnight at 4*Xinliang Hotel
Tea House in People's Park
Chengdu - Dujiangyang - Wolong - Siguniang Shan Town
Dujiangyan Irrigation System, Panda in Wolong, sunset of Mt. Siguniangshan
In the morning drive to Dujiangyan to visit the Irrigation System, which was built around 250 BC by Li Bin, a governor of Shu Prefecture in Qin State. The great project still works well today after more than two thousand year’s function, which not only puts an end of the water disaster to the local people but also makes Chengdu Plain “the land of abundance”. While visiting the water conservation work, you may find that the methods of harnessing the river the ancient people used are so simple but useful. In 2000, Dujiangyan became a UNESCO World Heritage Site. After that drive to Wolong National Nature Reserve. 52 km long from east to west and 62 km wide from south to north, the whole area is 200,000 hm². It is one of the China earliest natural reverses, which is rated the preservation zones network of “mankind and living beings” by the Organization of Education, Science and Culture of United Nations (UNESCO). The virgin forest, second bush forest and bamboo groves are very green. There are over 4,000 kinds of high-level plants, 24 kinds of them are valuable plants, such as Gongtong (Chinese dove tree), red China fir, Lianxiang and so on. There are more than 450 kinds of vertebras, 45 kinds of them are rated national focal preserved animals, such as giant panda, golden monkeys, antelopes, white-mouth deer etc. The natural beautiful scene is quiet and secluded. Visit Shenshuping Panda Base in Wolong, about 50 pandas live here, it is the largest breeding center for giant pandas, integrating scientific research, feeding, breeding, reproduction, wildness training, etc. Then drive to Siguniang Shan Town (former Rilong) through the Balang Tunnel, if the weather is good, enjoy the beautiful landscape of sunset of Siguniang Shan Mountain (Four Sisters Mountain) at the Maobiliang.
4 hours 10 minutes
Overnight at Yunshang Hotel
Panda in Wolong Panda Base
Siguniang Shan Town – Danba
Sunrise of Mt. Siguniang, Shuangqiao Valley, Wori Tusi Manor, Tibetan village Jiaju
If the weather is good, you’ll get early to enjoy the great panoramic view of Mt. Siguniang Shan at Maobiliang at sunrise. The Siguniang Shan Mountain (also Four Sisters Mountain, Four Girls Mountain, Four Maidens Mountain) has four over 5000 m peaks, legend has it that each peak represents a girl of the 4 sisters. The highest peak, Yaomei Feng, the youngest girl and at 6250 m, is also known as the “queen of Sichuan's peaks”. Soft hiking in the Shuangqiao Valley (Double-bridge Valley) of the Siguniang Shan Mountain, the scenery is concentrated and charming. Afterwards drive to visit Wori Tusi Manor, the former official residence of the local Tusi, a kind of imperial kingship leader. After that drive to visit Tibetan village Jiaju, the most beautiful village of China. In Danba, the local people are called Jiarong (Gyarong) Tibetans. Walking and visit in the Jiaju village. There are more than one hundred buildings with the same architectural style, a complete and unique character of Jiarong Tibetan residences. Under the blue sky, the Tibetan residences decorated in red, white and black are strewed at random but also in school from the bottom to the middle slope of the valley.
2 hours 26 minutes
Overnight at Mantuoluo Hotel
Danba - Bamei – Tagong
Block towers in Suopo, Huiyuan Temple, Lhagang Monastery, Gyergo Nunnery and the grand mani wall of Hepingfahui, sunset of Yala Mountain
Danba has long been acclaimed as the Kingdom of Thousands of Ancient Blockhouses. In the morning visit the ancient block towers in Suopo. They were made of clay and block and look fine from outside with solid thick walls. Then drive to Bamei, on the way visit the Huiyuan Temple and the beautiful villages. Upon arrival at Tagong, visit the Lhagang Monastery (Tagong Si) of Sayka Sect, which is surrounded by three hills symbolizing three Bodhisattvas. It is said that the blessing of a reserved Jowo Shakyamuni image left by Wencheng Princess in this monastery to the pilgrims resembles the Lhasa Jowo Shakyamuni image in Lhasa. Then visit the impressive Gyergo Nunnery and the grand mani wall of Hepingfahui. From the hillside next to the Muya Golden Pagoda, you can enjoy the panoramic view of the Zhara Lhatse (5.820 m, also Jara or Yala), when the weather is good, the scenery at sunset is especially spectacular.
2 hours 43 minutes
Overnight at Duwang Hotel
Nunnery in Tagong
Tagong - Luhuo - Kasa Lake - Garze
Sunrise of Yala Mountain, Kasa Lake, Han-Chinese Monastery
From the hillside next to the Muya Golden Pagoda, you can enjoy the panoramic view of the Zhara Lhatse (5.820 m, also Jara or Yala), when the weather is good, the scenery at sunset is especially spectacular. Then drive to Garze (Ganzi), the real cultural and religious center for the Tibetans living in Sichuan. In Tibetan "Garze" means "white and beauty", named after the famous in 1552 built temple of yellow sect (Gelukpa) in the county. In Garze visit the Han-Chinese Monastery. It is the oldest architecture in Garze built by Han-Chinese in 1274, the Han-Chinese and Tibetan buildings symbolize cultural integration and solidarity of Han-Chinese and Tibetan people.
5 hours 3 minutes
Overnight at Highland Barley Hotel
Garze - Yarchen Gar (Yaqing Si) - Garze
Debate in Garze Monastery, Yarchen Gar (Yaqing Si)
In the morning visit the Garze Monastery of Gelukpa school, it was originally constructed by the Qosot Mongols in 1662 on a hilltop overlooking their castles of Mazur and Khangsar. The monks will usually debate at around 9 am, it lasts about 40 minutes. Then drive to visit the Yarchen Gar (Yaqing Si) of Nyingma sect, a big nuns’ world! About 20000 nuns live, learn and meditate here. With 4000 meters above sea level, Yarchen Gar is the largest meditation place for women in the world. After reaching parking lot at Yarchen Gar, walk about 10 minutes to the hillside at the north of Juemu (a title for nun in Tibetan) Island. There is a vast Padmasambhava statue, and in the southwest orientation, you can overlook the grand panorama of whole Yarchen Gar and even Juemu Island. Then go downhill to riverside along small wooden houses where nuns practice meditation. One the way, everywhere you can see that these nuns are sitting in meditation, or scripture debating, or reading quiet, or chatting and relaxing. Yarchen Gar is divided by river into areas for Zhaba (monk) and Juemu (nun). River bank area is for Zhaba, island for Juemu. Cross the bridge on the river and get into Juemu Island, the core zone of Yarchen Gar. Here, the nun’s low and small meditation houses are very intensive and covered the whole peninsula. You can have a walk here and immerse yourself in the pure religious atmosphere of nuns' meditation place. Late in the afternoon drive back to Garze.
4 hours 33 minutes
Overnight at Highland Barley Hotel
Yarchen Gar (Yaqing Si)
Garze - Dargye - Manigango - Yilhun Lhatso - Dege
Dargye Monastery, have a walk in Yilhun Lhatso (Xinlu Hai Lake), rock sculpture frescoes in Keluodong village
The Dargye represents the Gelukpa school and was founded in 1642. Pass by Manigango to visit Xinlu Hai Lake (Yilhun Lhatso), located at the foot of Chola Mountain (Que’er Shan). It is 4040 meters above the sea level, with an average depth of 10 meters and a maximum depth of 15 meters. There are plateau spruces, firs, Chinese weeping cypresses, azalea trees and meadows around the lake. It is also a preserve for wild animals like white-lipped deer. Short walking by the lake Yilhun Lhatso. Keep driving through the Chola (Que’er Shan) Tunnel, visit the rock sculpture frescoes in Keluodong village.
3 hours 36 minutes
Overnight at 3*Ling Gesar Hotel
In the morning visit the Dege Printing House which has always been well reputed as the cultural treasury at the foot of the snow mountain. It is the biggest printing house in Tibetan area. Another program is visit the Dege Gonchen, meaning “temple”, a monastery of Sakya sect. It was built in 1448, today about 300 monks live here. In the afternoon drive to Pelyul and visit Pelyul Monastery (Baiyu Si) nearby the county seat. This famous Nyingma Sect monastery had played a great role in history and held many subsidiary temples. Then enjoy the grandiose panoramic view of Pelyul Monastery from a hillside when the weather is good.
2 hours 13 minutes
Overnight at Donggcha Culture Theme Hotel
Dege Printing House
Baiyu - Batang
String Dance and Music
Drive to Batang and visit Khampa Tibetan village. You dive deep into the typical life of the Khampa Tibetan, as well as you can certainly taste the butter tea. If there is a chance, you can know more about Xianzi Dance and Music, a kind of beautiful and lyric Tibetan dance and boasting “skillful in dancing with long sleeves” characteristic. When they program, several men play the Huqin, “Biwang”, a kind of instrument with two strings, and the other dancers dance with their music. In November 2019, Batang Xianzi Dance was inscribed in representative list of the National Intangible Cultural Heritage.
4 hours 39 minutes
Overnight at Degalin Inn (2580 m)
Batang – Markam – Zuogong
Drive in the Three Parallel Rivers Regions, central area of Hengduanshan Mountain Range. Leave Sichuan and enter Tibet
Drive from Batang via Golden Sand River (Jinsha Jiang, upper reaches of the Yangtze) Bridge to Markam, the first city of Tibet on this overland journey. Jinsha Jiang is the boundary between Sichuan and Tibet. You drive now in the Three Parallel Rivers Regions, which is consisted of Jinsha Jiang River, Nu Jiang River and Lancang Jiang River (Mekong) originated from the Tanggula Mountain Range of Tibetan Plateau flow in parallel southward. On the way cross three mountain passes: Joba (3880 m), Lawu (4358 m) and Dongda (5080 m).
5 hours 40 minutes
Overnight at Ji’an Dongri Hotel (3000 m)
Zuogong – Bangda - Baxoi – Ranwu
Overcome 72-turn, stay be the beautiful Ranwu lake
Drive along upstream to Bangda, a town junction where Lhasa connects to the Chamdo-Kunming Highway. Keep drive across Yela Mountain (4,618 meters), then enter the famous 72-turn, it is the most tortuous road in Tibet. Afterwards drive to Ranwu Lake (Ngan Tso), a spectacularly crystal blue lake surrounded by snow peaks. As a part of Parlung Tsangpo River, Ranwu Lake is composed of Upper Ranwu Lake and Lower Ranwu Lake. And there is a large meadow between Upper Ranwu Lake and Lower Ranwu Lake. Parlung Tsangpo River originates from Laigu Glacier that is 40 km away from Ranwu Town. Walking along the Upper Ranwu Lake and Lower Ranwu Lake, you can enjoy the scenery of beautiful snow mountain and meadow, as well as village by the lake.
5 hours 32 minutes
Overnight at Ranwu International Self-Driving Camp (3200 m)
Winding Mountain Road
Ranwu – Midui – Bome - Lulang
Midui Glacier, Parlung Tsangpo, Lulang Town
Drive to Bomi along Ranwu valley. On the way, visit Midui Glacier which is consisted of beautiful Tibetan village, farm fields, snow mountains, glaciers, forests, lakes, etc. Midui Glacier is on the upstream of Midui River and melting glacier flows into Midui River and then into Parlung Tsangpo River. Midui Glacier is the most important marine glacier in Tibet and the lowest elevation glacier in China. The main peak of the glacier is 6800 meters above sea level and its snow line is only 4600 meters above sea level. From Ranwu to Bomi, about 100 km, is the most beautiful part of this overland tour. Driving along the Parlung Tsangpo River and enjoying the beautiful primitive landscape of snow mountains, forests and rivers. Drive down a few hundred meters then reach the lowland jungle settlement of Tongmai. Pass by Guxianghu Lake (2600 m) and Tongmai Bridge, through the Tongmai No. 1 Tunnel, finally reach Lulang Town. Leisurely walking in the natural oxygen bar - Lulang.
5 hours 36 minutes
Overnight at Lulang Zhujiang International Hotel (3700 m)
Lulang - Linzhi - Basum Tso
Overlook Gyala Pelri and Namjabarwa, Buchu monastery, Lamaling temple, Ancient Giant Cypress Forest, Niyang River, Basum Tso Lake
After breakfast, drive through picturesque Lulang Forest. When crossing Serkhyem La Pass (Seji La, 4,515 m) you will have spectacular views of Mount Gyala Pelri (7,150 m) and Mount Namchak Barwa (Namjabarwa, 7,782 m), when the weather is so fine. During downhill, you can enjoy the beautiful scenery of Niyang River valley and the panorama of Lingzhi. Before arrive in Linzhi (Nyingtri, 2900 m) visit the two neighboring monasteries: From the golden roof of the Buchu monastery to view the unique scenery of the Lamaling temple. After the visit of Ancient Giant Cypress Forest, drive along the Niyang River to the Basum Tso Lake, a holy lake of Nyingma school. More than 6000 m high snow-covered mountains’ reflection images make the lake very cinematic. It is no doubt that the main actor is Tsodzong Monastery on the Tashi Island. Hike on the island to visit Tsodzong Monastery. If you are interested, you can continue to walk by Basum Tso, enjoy the snow mountain and thick forest, and enter the Jieba Village that maintains pure Gongbo style. Basum Tso is located in Gongbo’gyamda County. The Tibetans who live in Gongbo’gyamda County are called “Gongbo people” by other Tibetan people. They have their own costume, special buildings, different festivals, and even different dialect. Visiting a family at Jieba Village, you will be treated warmly by them.
3 hours 29 minutes
Overnight at Himalaya Basum Tso Resort (3500 m)
Basum Tso – Gandan – Lhasa
Mi La Mountain Pass. Gandan Monastery. Welcome in Lhasa!
Drive over the impressive Mi La Mountain Pass (4865 m) to Lhasa (3650 m), capital of Tibet Autonomous Region. On the way visit Gandan Monastery. It was built in 1409 by Tsongkapa, the founder of the Gelugpa of Tibetan Buddhism. Gandan, Drepung and Sera are the three largest monasteries in Lhasa. And Gandan is the place where Tsongkapa passed away. Therefore, it has the highest reputation of all the monasteries of the Gelugpa. If you are interested, you can walk along the pilgrimage way to the left and right hillsides of Gandan Monastery to visit Tsongkhapa’s meditation cave and enjoy the panorama of Gandan Monastery and magnificent scenery of Lhasa River valley.
6 hours 30 minutes
Overnight at 4*Snow Heaven International Grand Hotel (3650 m)
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 4*Snow Heaven International Grand Hotel
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 4*Snow Heaven International Grand Hotel
Debate in Sera Monastery
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Today transfer to airport or railway station, leave Tibet.
Private travel, great experiences! Please contact us for your tailor-made travel offer.
With individual China Tibet travel, you can decide when, where and how you go on tour by yourself. What's more, you can choose the length of travel and whom you go with.
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 stay overnight mostly at simple hotel/guesthouse. Long journeys on bad roads and 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.
Panda in Wolong | Photo by Liu Bin
Sunset of Siguniang Mountain | Photo by Liu Bin
Siguniang Mountain | Photo by Liu Bin
Wori Tusi Manor | Photo by Liu Bin
Jiaju Village of Danba | Photo by Liu Bin
Sunset of Yala Mountain | Photo by Liu Bin
Prayer Wheels of Tagong Monastery | Photo by Liu Bin