Shangri La Travels, Tibet

Central Tibet with Namtso - 9 days


Lhasa City Tours


Central Tibet
& Everest


West Tibet
& Mt Kailash










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Central Tibet (Lhasa-Lhasa)

Day1. Arrive Lhasa, meet your guide and transfer to 3* Kyichu htl or similar x4n
Day2. Sightseeing Drepung and Sera monasteries
Day3. Sightseeing Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple
Day4. Day trip to Drak Yerpa
Day5. Lhasa to Gyantse via Yamdrok Lake and Karola glacier (Gyantse htl)
Day6. Gyantse to Shigatse, via Shalu monastery and visit Tashilumpo monastery (Manasarovar htl)
Day7. Shigatse to Namtso Lake, visit Namtso lake and Tashi Dor Caves (Holy Lake gh)
Day8 Namtso to Lhasa, on the way visit Tsurphu monastery (Kyichu htl)
Day9. 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. Day trip to Drak Yerpa
Drak Yerpa: (18km northeast of Lhasa) is one of the holiest cave retreats in Lhasa area. Among many ascetics who have sojourned here are Guru Rinpoche during the 8th century and Atisha (Jowo-je) the Bengali Buddhist who spent 12 years proselytizing in Tibet. King Songtsen Gampo also meditated here, after his Tibetan wife established the first chapel in the 7th century. This hermitage has more than 80 meditation caves tucked away in the hills. The Dalai Lamas and most Tibetan masters took meditation here. It is very good for hiking with an extremely beautiful view.
Day5. Lhasa to Gyantse (3900m) via Yamdrok Lake  
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.
Day6. Gyantse to Shigatse (3800m), via Shalu monastery (90km)
Drive from Gyantse to Shigatse and on the way visit Shalu monastery (3850m) which dates back to the 11th century. It rose to prominence in the 14th century when its abbot, Buton Rinnchen Drup, emerged as the foremost interpreter and compiler of Sanskrit Buddhist texts of his day. Afternoon 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. Tashilumpo Monastery is a historic and culturally important monastery in Shigatse, the second-largest city in Tibet. The monastery is the traditional seat of successive Panchen Lamas, the second highest ranking tulku lineage in the Gelukpa tradition.
Day7. Shigatse to Namtso Lake, visit Namtso Lake and Tashi Dor Caves
Drive to Namtso Lake which is 370km from Shigatse and it takes 7/8 hours. Namtso means heavenly lake in Tibetan and offers  magnificent views of the snow-capped mountains surrounding the lake. Trek to the medication caves and enjoy the glory of sunset over the lake. 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 the sheep if any travelers circumambulate the lake and Tashi Island once and Tuechun Island 12 times, they obtain infinite merits and virtues to bring good health and happiness for their family.
Day8 Namtso to Lhasa, on the way visit Tsurphu monastery
In the morning enjoy the sunrise over the lake and the snow mountain peaks in sun's glory. Then drive back to Lhasa, on the way visiting Tsurphu monastery. This is the seat of the Karma Kagyupa and was founded in 1187 by Karma Dusum Kyenpa (1110-1193). Kargyupa is also known as the black hat which was a mythical crown and given to the fifth Karmapa by the Chinese emperor Yonglo in 1407 which is made from the hair of Khandroma, known as celestial beings.
Day9. Transfer to Airport
Departure from Lhasa to airport and fly to your next destination.