Shangri La Travels, Tibet

Lhasa & Central Tibet with Samye, Namtso
& Everest Base Camp - 13 days

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Central Tibet
& Everest

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West Tibet
& Mt Kailash

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Central Tibet with EBC

Day1. Arrive Lhasa, meet your guide and transfer to 3* Kyichu htl or similar x4n
Day2. Sightseeing: Drepung, Norbulinka and Sera monastery
Day3. Sightseeing: Potala palace and Jokhang temple
Day4. Free day
Day5. Lhasa to Samye monastery and visit Samye monastery (overnight Samye gh)
Day6. Samye to Gyantse and visit Gyantse Kumbum (overnight Yeti ht)
Day7. Gyantse to Shigatse, and visit Tashilumpo monastery (overnight Manasarovar htl)
Day8. Shigatse to Sakya monastery (overnight Sakya Hotel)
Day9. Sakya to Rombuk and visit Rombuk monastery and EBC (overnight Rombuk gh)
Day10. Rombuk back to Shigatse, (overnight Manasarovar htl)
Day11. Shigatse to Namtso Lake and visit the lake and Tashi Dor caves (overnight Holy Lake gh)
Day12. Namtso to Lhasa, on the way visit Tsurphu monastery (overnight Kyichu htl)
Day13. Transfer to Airport

The Detail

Day 1. Arrive Lhasa
Arrive at Lhasa airport or train station where your guide will be waiting to meet you. Transfer to your hotel and relax and adjust to the altitude.

Day2. Drepung monastery (8km to the west) and Sera monastery (5km to the north)
Morning, visit Drepung Monastery (rice heap). Drepung monastery was founded in 1416 by Jamyang Cheojee a disciple of Tsong-khapa. It was one of six great monasteries of Gelukpa sect and possibly the largest monastery in the world. Before the construction of the Potala by the fifth Dalai Lama; it was the principal seat of the Gelukpa Sect. There were originally 7 colleges but were consolidated into 4, each with its own abbot and syllabus. The monastery keeps plentiful historical relics, Buddhist scriptures, and arts and crafts.
Afternoon, visit Sera Monastery: one of the three great monasteries of Gelukpa sect in Lhasa-Ganden, Drepung and Sera. Sera monastery means merciful hail'-the origin of the name is thought to derive from the fact that Sera was in constant competition with Drepung ('rice heap monastery') and that the 'hail' of Sera destroyed the 'rice' of Drepung. It was founded in 1419 by Shamchen chejee-a disciple of Tsongkhapa. One of the highlights of a visit to Sera is the debating session from 3pm to 5pm attended by most of the monks. The noise and fervor is exciting even if you can't understand a word they are saying.
Day3. Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple
Morning, visit The Potala Palace. The original construction dates back to the 7th century, and was built by King Songtsen Gampo. Later in the 17th century the 5th Dalai Lama rebuilt the Potala Palace to its present size with 1500 artisans and 5000 workers. The maze-like structure contains over a thousand rooms and is thought to house 10,000 shrines and 200,000 statues. The massive structure contains a small world within it itself with a 13-storey castle rising over 117m high.
Afternoon visit to the world heritage site of Jokhang Temple and explore the bustling bazaar along the Barkhor Street. The Jokhang Temple is the first temple in Tibet and built by King Sontsen Gampo’s wife princess Bhrikuti in the 7th century when he moved his capital to Lhasa. Unlike most temples, the Jokhang is not identified with a particular sect because it houses the holiest statue of Sakyamuni when he was 12 years old and consecrated by Buddha himself.
Day4. Free day
Day5. Lhasa to Samye and visit Samye monastery
Drive from Lhasa to Samye monastery, which is 170 kilometers from Lhasa and it takes 5 hours driving along the Yarlung Tsangpo river with beautiful views of the countryside along the way. Samye Monastery was Tibet's first monastery and built in 8th century under the patronage of King Trisong Detsan, with the work being directed by Padmasambhava and Shantarakshita, two Indian masters the king had invited to Tibet to help consolidate the Buddhist faith. Indian and Chinese scholars were invited to assist in the translation of Buddhist texts into Tibetan. The monastery was surrounded by a circular wall topped with 1028 small stupas, and four great stupas in four colors {white, red, blue, and green} stood facing the south-east, southwest, northwest and northeast corners of the main temple respectively.
Day6. Samye to Gyantse 3980m via Yamdok lake and Karola glacier
Morning drive up to Kambala pass (4794m), you will have a glimpse of Yamdrok-yutso and a wonderful view of Mt. Nyenchen Khangsar in the distance. Yamdrok-yutso is one of the four holy lakes in Tibet {the others are Lhamo latso, Namtso and Manasarover} and seat of wrathful deities. After a morning of fantastic views reach Nangartse for lunch. Then along the Friendship Southern Hwy drive to Gyantse, visit Pelkor monastery and the famous stupa; Gyantse Kumbum built in 1427 by Gyantse King. The 35m-high Stupa with its white layers trimmed with decorative stripes and its crown-like golden dome makes it a stunning architectural wonder in Tibet.
Day7. Gyantse to Shigatse 90km and visit Tashilhunpo monastery
Morning, drive to Shigatse  the second biggest city in Tibet, where you will visit Tashilumpo Monastery which was founded in 1447 by Gendun Drup, the First Dalai Lama. Later, Lobsang Chökyi Gyalsten, the Fourth Panchen Lama, made major expansions to the monastery. The monastery is the traditional seat of successive Panchen Lamas, the second highest ranking tulku lineage in the Gelukpa tradition
There is a bustling 'free' market at the foot of the ruins of the Shigatse Fortress where you can buy local handicrafts embedded with coral and turquoise, Tibetan daggers, Chinese porcelain and yak butter.
Day8. Shigatse to Sakya monastery 4280m
Morning drive to Sakya (4 hours) and visit Sakya monastery, the head of Sakya sect. The southern monastery was established in 1268 and is designed defensively, with watch towers on each of the corners of its high walls. The northern monastery is located on north side of Trum Chu and was built in 1073 by Kon Konchog Gyelpo, a member of the influential Kon family.
Day9. Sakya to Rombuk, visit Rombuk monastery and EBC 5200m
Early morning, drive to Rombuk, the highest monastery in the world. If the weather is good in late afternoon hike to EBC and enjoy the view of Mt, Everest. Next morning, visit Rombuk monastery; the main Buddhist centre in the valley which was established in 1902 by a Nyingmapa Lama.
Day10. Drive back to Shigatse
Day11. Shigatse to Namtso Lake, visit Namtso Lake and Tashi Dor Caves
Drive to Namtso lake, (370km 7/8 hours) crossing the Shugula Pass with beautiful views of countryside along the way. Afternoon, hike to the holy lake Namtso, it means heavenly lake in Tibetan which is the 2nd largest saline lake in China-Tibet with an altitude of 4718m. It is one of the four holy lakes in Tibet {the others are Lhamo Latso, Yamdok-yutso and Manasarovar}. In Tibetan Buddhism each year of sheep if any travelers circumambulate the lake and Tashidor peninsula once and Tuechun Island 12 times, they can create infinite merit and virtues to bring good health and happy life for their family.
Day12. Drive back to Lhasa
The drive back to Lhasa, (250km 5 hours) is through nomadic area with beautiful views of countryside along the way. Also you can see the holy Mountain Nyanchen Tangla.
Day13. Transfer to Airport
Departure from Lhasa to airport and fly to your next destination.