15 Days Kailash Tour
2. Comfortable hotels in cities and guesthouses in some remote places.
3. Flight and train are not included.
4. Tour cost is only for reference, please inquire for detailed quotation.
5. The more people, the cheaper cost.
- 15 days and 14 nightsTrip Length:
- Cultural Spiritual Experienc,Everest Base Camp Tours,Join-in Group Tours,Overland Driving Tours,Photography ToursActivity:
In order to make it easier for you to choose the right trip, we have graded our trips with certain Trip Level System from 1 to 4 according to the degree of activities and altitude. We have also suggested the most suitable groups or individuals for each Trip Level.
In the Trip Overview of each itinerary there is also a brief description of what the Trip is like.
Our staffs at the Explore Tibet are always happy to answer any questions you have and guide you to the trip that best suits your interests and level of fitness.
Light walking and hiking that is suitable for all level of fitness, generally altitude range between 3500m/9800ft to 4000m/13000ft. Hotels and guesthouses accommodation.
Suitable for family with kids and senior groups.
May included moderate level of hiking, biking, horse riding and maximum altitude of 5000m/16000ft. Hotels and guesthouses accommodation.
Suitable for family with kids bigger than 12 years, individual having average level for fitness.
3. Moderate to Strenuous
May include high altitude hiking up to 6 hours, long hour driving and sometimes overnight at around 5000m/16000ft, require a moderately high level of fitness, camping and basic lodging facility.
Suitable for adult family, individuals physically fit and have experiences of high altitude trekking.
May include high altitude trekking and mountaineering, camping and basic lodging facilities, altitude range from 3600m/9800ft to 6000m/19000ft.
Suitable for adventures and individual with physically fit and healthy.
- Inquiry Tailor-Made
After acclimatizing in Lhasa, you will drive west across the vast plains with spectacular view of the Himalayans to the south and the Trans-Himalayans to the north. Stopping along some of Tibet’s most spiritual sites like Tashi Lhunpo, Yamdrok Lake and the Kumbum Stupa, you’ll gain an understanding of Buddhism’s impact on Tibet before the magnificence of Mt. Kailash is unveiled.
For thousands of years, Mt.Kailash has been the pilgrimage destination of Buddhism, Bon, Hindu and Jainism worshippers alike. At an altitude of 6714 meters, Gangkar Ti-se, as it is known in Tibetan, has perennial snow cover and is the focal point of all travel to western Tibet.
Pilgrims travel to this sacred mountain to complete a spiritual circuit, as it is believed that it will wash away their sins.
In addition to the varied landscapes, wildlife abounds in Western Tibet. Along the route, you will be able to see herds of wild ass, gazelle, Hodgson’s antelope, marmots and different species of geese from the window of your 4x4.
After spending three days trekking from monastery to monastery around Mt. Kailash trekking, you’ll be absolved of all your sins. From there we’ll drive to Manasarovar Lake and then journey to the world’s highest peak, Mt. Everest, and stay overnight to enjoy a sunrise you will never forget.
If you’re looking for a tour that is cost effective, combines the best Tibet has to offer spiritually and naturally and stories that will last you a lifetime, then this is the tour for you.
|Day 1||Arrival in Lhasa (3680m)||Pick up and transfer to hotel, rest at hotel.||Hotel in Lhasa|
|Day 2||Lhasa sightseeing||Bakhor street, Johkang Temple, Potala Palace||Hotel in Lhasa|
|Day 3||Lhasa sightseeing||Sera Monastery, Drepung Monastery||Hotel in Lhasa|
|Day 4||Lhasa-Shigatse (3900m), 370km, approx 7hrs||Yamdrok Lake, Karola Glacier, Kumbum Stupa||Gesar hotel|
|Day 5||Shigatse-Lhatse (4000m), 200km, approx 4hrs||Tashilhunpo monastery, Sakya monastery||Farmer's hotel|
|Day 6||Lhatse-Saga (4600m), 312km, approx 6.5hrs||Wild landscapes of western Tibet||Local Hotel|
|Day 7||Saga- Darchen(4560m), 606km, approx 8hrs||Sand dunes, Manasarovar lake, Mysterious view of Mt.Kailash||Local guesthouse|
|Day 8||Trek from Darchen-Dirakpuk (4700m), 20km, approx 4hrs||Wild landscapes around Mt.Kailash||Local guesthouse|
|Day 9||Trek from Dirakpuk-Zuktulpuk (4790m), 18km, approx 6hrs||Wild landscapes around Mt.Kailash||Local guesthouse|
|Day 10||Trek from Zuktulpuk-Lake Manasarovar (4560m), 12km, approx 3hrs||Close view of Manasarovar lake||Local guesthouse|
|Day 11||Lake Manasarovar - Saga, 580km||Local Hotel|
|Day 12||Saga (4600m) - EBC, 550km, approx 9hrs||Peikutso lake, Mt Shishapama||Local guesthouse|
|Day 13||EBC-Shigatse (4000m), 350km, approx 7hrs||Rongbuk monastery, EBC||Gesar hotel|
|Day 14||Shigatse-Lhasa (3680m), 280km, approx 6hrs||Yarlung Tsangpo||Hotel in Lhasa|
|Day 15||Depart from Tibet||Send off to train/airport||--------------|
Fixed Departure Dates
|Departure Dates||Price(per person) /Status|
- International and domestic flight/train.(Note: we accept flights and train tickets bookings in advance, please check the updated cost and ticket availability with your travel consultant);
To get to Lhasa, you can enjoy a panoramic view of the Himalayan Mountains from your plane, or spend several days crossing the Tibetan plateau on the highest railway in the world. Upon arrival, your guide will meet you at either Gonggar Airport or Lhasa Train Station. From the airport, it’s an hour drive (60km) into Lhasa on the new highway. From the train station, it’s a short half hour ride (25km) into the city.
Check into your hotel, meet fellow travelers and take it easy for the rest of the day to acclimatize and alleviate jetlag.
(Note: If your arrival time is different from others and you don’t want to wait for the free shuttle bus, then we can arrange private airport pick up/transfer for additional cost CNY400. It is free for train station pick up / transfer. Please let us know your arrival time and detail information of flights/train.)
DAY 02. LHASA ESCORTED TOUR.
Attractions; Jokhang temple and bustling Bakhor street and Sera monastery.
On your first day on the plateau, you may have headaches or experience some drowsiness. This is very common among travelers adjusting to the high altitude. We recommend drinking plenty of water and mild activity during the first few days.
After breakfast, your guide will meet you at your hotel and take you to Jokhang Temple, the oldest Buddhist temple in Tibet and focal point of pilgrim worship. From there, we’ll walk the famous Barkhor Street, one of Asia’s most unique markets and a great introduction to modern Tibetan culture. The day’s adventures will finish with a visit to Sera Monastery, home to over 600 monks.
Overnight in Lhasa
DAY 03. LHASA ESCORTED TOUR.
Attractions; Potala palace and Drepung monastery
Today we will visit the famous Potala Palace, the cardinal landmark of Tibet and a masterpiece of Tibetan architecture. It was first built by 33rd King Songtsen Gangpo in 7thcentury and later rebuilt in 17th century rebuilt by 5th Dalai Lama. Since then it has been home to the Dalai Lama and his government.
In the afternoon, we will visit Drepung monastery about 45km to the north of Lhasa. One the largest monasteries in the world, at one point it housed for more than 10,000 monks. Bring your camera for an inside look of monastic life and the twisting narrow alleys.
Overnight in Lhasa
DAY 04. LHASA(3600m) - GYANTSE (3900m) - SHIGATSE(3900m), 350 km
Attractions; Yamdrok lake, Mt.Nyechen Kangsar glacier, Gyantse Kubum stupa and Pelkhor Choede monastery.
We begin our journey west, by zigzagging up the Kampa la pass (4700m) to get a breathtaking glimpse of the holy Yamdrok Lake with its turquoise waters and snowcapped Mt. Nyenchen Khangsar in the distance. Then we’ll continue driving along the lake for few kilometers and stop for lunch at Nagar tse.
The rest of the day will be spent enjoying the many magnificent valleys and Tibetan villages that we pass through. En route we will stop at Karo la (5150m) to see the holy Mt. Nyenchen Kangsar glacier.
In Gyantse, we’ll visit the Kumbum Stupa next to the Palkhor Choede monastery. This magnificent multi-door structure is the largest stupa in Tibet and is not only known for its architecture but also its old sculptures and paintings all around its inner walls. In the late afternoon we’ll drive to Shigatse and stay overnight.
DAY 05. SHIGATSE (3900m) – LHATSE (4200m), 150km
Attractions; Tashi lhunpo monastery and Sakya monastery.
In the morning we will visit the Tashi Lhunpo Monastery and your guide will make time to obtain the ATP permit from the local PSB. Tashi Lhunpo Monastery is one of the largest functioning monasteries in western Tibet and boasts over 600 years of history.
En route to our overnight destination Lhatse, we will drive off the main road to Sakya Monastery to explore the twisting alleys with the pilgrims. In the 13th century Sakya monastery was an important scholastic study center for Buddhists in Tibet.
Overnight in Lhatse.
DAY 06. LHATSE (4200m) – SAGA (4500m), 340km
We'll spend the day driving straight to Saga through a scenic valley of Brahmaputra tributary. Having recently been reconstructed and paved road, the journey to Saga should be very smooth. Overnight at Saga
DAY 07. SAGA – DARCHEN (5000m), 520km
Attractions: View of Lake Manasarovar and Mt Kailash.
From our car, we’ll have stunning views of the great Himalayans to the south and Trans-Himalayan to the north as we drive across the vast plains. This region is home to nomads whose lifestyle remains close to what it has been for centuries and a wide spectrum of plateau wildlife.
During this thrilling journey, we’ll pass by sand dunes, mountains and sandstone valleys before we reach the holy Lake Manasarovar in the late afternoon. The lake is one of four holy lakes in Tibet and receives thousands of pilgrims from Tibet, India and Russia every year.
From there we will drive to Darchen, a small nomadic village and important launch point for pilgrimages around Mt. Kailash. Upon your arrival you will have plenty of time to explore the town and prepare for tomorrow’s trek. The hills around Darchen are great places to prepare for the main trek.
In the afternoon, your guide will arrange trekking necessities like porters and yaks for luggage transportation. Explore the village for dinner options or ask our guide for recommendations.
Overnight at Darchen.
DAY 08. 1st DAY TREKKING TO DIRAPUK. 20km.
Attractions; the views on the both side of the valley that you are going to trek.
From Darchen, our trek will follow the small trail in a clockwise circuit around Mt. Kailash at an average altitude of 4700m. We will walk side-by-side with local Buddhist pilgrims following the same rout and pass by Bon pilgrims walking a counter-clockwise circuit.
After a 4-hour trek we will reach Tamdin (4780m) where we will have a simple lunch inside a nomadic tent. From there it is only 4km hike to Dirakpuk Monastery where we will stay at a nearby guesthouse for the night. This 4km stretch contains some of the best scenery of the entire kora.
Dirakpuk Monastery was rebuilt in 1985 and is located on the north side of the Lha-chu River facing the north face of the Mt. Kailash. Dirakpuk name originally comes from a word Dira, meaning “female yak horn” and Puk, meaning, “cave.” Legend has it that a female yak used her horn to create the cave.
Overnight at the local guesthouse at Dirapuk, the rooms are very basic.
DAY 09. 2nd DAY OF THE TREKKING TO ZULTUL PUK(4790m) 18km.
Attractions; the once and only chance of challenging to cross the Dikpala (5000m) and Dormala (5600m) next to Dikpala
This will be our most challenging day of trekking. The Dikpala (5000m) and Dormala (5600m) passes are not that steep, but trekking at such high altitudes will be very tiring and slow. But at the top, you’ll get a front row seat of the holy Mt. Kailash.
After a short rest at the top, we will climb down into the long valley and stop for lunch at the Shabjay Dakpo nomadic tent.
Then will continues the day to Zultul Puk for the night, Zultul Puk Monastery (4790m) was built by two important religious figures, Milarepa and Naro Bonchung. You can see the footprint and handprint of Milarepa inside the cave.
Overnight at the local family guesthouse at Zultul Puk, the rooms are very basic.
Overnight at Zultul Puk
DAY 10. LAST DAY TREKKING AND DRIVE TO LAKE MANASAROVAR. (12km trekking and 80km drive).
Attractions; close view of the Manasarovar lake and Thuktso lake.
Today is an easy day trek to complete the circuit and your driver will pick you up from Tashi Do (which is also called as Dzongsar). Then will continues drive to Lake Manasarovar and overnight at guesthouses near the lake. You may have a short visit to the Chiu monastery by walking up on the small hill.
DAY 11. TRACE THE ROAD BACK TO SAGA
Today we will trace the road back to Saga for the night.
DAY 12. SAGA – EBC (5150m).
Attractions: Rongbuk monastery and Mt. Everest base camp.
In the morning, we will head for Everest Base Camp, located in the Rongbuk Valley. Nearby Rongbuk Monastery is the highest monastery in the world and houses both monks and nuns.
Driving along the Pekutso Lake, you will have a picturesque view of Mt Shishapama and other peaks of the mighty Himalayans, Mt Shishapama is the only Peak above 8000m that fully located in Tibet. After passing Old Tingri, keep an eye out for the tallest peaks of the Himalayans. From left to right the guide will point out Mt.Makalu (8463m), Mt.Lotse (8516m), Mt.Everest (8844m) and Mt.Cho Oyu (8201m).
In the afternoon you have the option to do a short trek from the tent guesthouses community to the actual Everest Base Camp. It will take you about 2 hours or more depending on your physical condition (6Km), or you can take the dedicated minibus instead.
We suggest you bring your own sleeping bags as accommodations at the tent guesthouse are very simple. We will stay overnight in these tents guesthouses unless you're there between November and March, when the tent guesthouses closes and only Rongbuk monastery guesthouses is available.
DAY 13. EBC (5150m) – SHIGATSE, 350km.
After we enjoy the sunrise view of the Mt Everest, we will drive back to Shigatse through the friendship highway, in Shigatse, you will enjoy a hot shower at the hotel and rest. Overnight at Shigatse.
DAY 14. SHIGATSE – LHASA, 450km/300km
Today we will drive back to Lhasa, in the afternoon you have sometime to explore around the town and buy some gifts for your family and friends at home.
DAY 15. LHASA AIRPORT/TRAIN STATION SENDS OFF.
We'll head to the airport or train station and say our goodbyes. Before your departure, we would appreciate it if you can spend some time to evaluate our services eith by filling the feedback form or by simply sending us an email. Thank you very much and wish you have a safe journey back to home.
- International and domestic flight/train.(Note: we accept flights and train tickets bookings in advance, please check the updated cost and ticket availability with your travel consultant);
In order to make your trip worry free and indisputable, here we have carefully collected all the essential information that will give you a clear image of the trip as well as logistics during your stay in Tibet, this also will be helpful for your trip preparation before you leave, so please go through it and make sure you are well prepare for the trip, if you have any questions, please feel free to contact our tour consultant or write us on email@example.com
As we mentioned above, Tibet is politically very sensitive and any political activities are restrictedly prohibited, so we always advising our clients to keep away from any political conversations or activities that bound against the policy of People’s republic of China. Your involvement in such activities would influence the whole group as well as future of all your guides, driver and the company. If any one does, then we have the full right to cancel the trip and we are not responsible for so caused hassle and costs.
Being a responsible company, we are always available for 24 hours a day, in case if you need any emergency help. It is best to first call your designated travel coordinator or sales person (whose contact numbers are will be listed on your tour agreement), for any reason if you are not able to reach to him/her then please ring us on the below numbers;
Lhasa Head Office: (0891)-6305152 (the area code 0891 is not necessary if you are calling from Lhasa)
Chengdu Office: (028)-86262365
Note: office working time is 9am – 7pm from Monday to Friday.
Sonam Jamphel (Sales Manager) 0158890904080 or 013398000993 (Available for 24 hours a day)
Every one should have the valid passport (with minimum 6 months validity) and Chinese visa to travel into China and the Chinese visa is also valid in Tibet, generally the Chinese visa is can be applied either by your self or use a visa service agency in your home country, but the visa application and requirements are little vary in different countries, so please check with your regional Chinese Embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements.
NOTE; It is your responsibility to obtain the Chinese visa, so just for your information it is better not to list Tibet as your travel destination on your visa application form, just list Chengdu or Beijing, whichever your in-bound city is as your travel destination. If you enter Tibet from Nepal then you don’t need the Chinese individual visa and please check the next line for what you need.
If You Enter Tibet From Nepal
If you enter Tibet from Nepal, then the permit and Chinese visa formalities are slightly different, to enter from Nepal, you don't need the Chinese individual visa and instead you should obtain the Tibet group visa from Chinese Embassy in Nepal, you can’t apply it directly and you should have a local Nepalese agency to apply for it, so our Nepalese partner agency will assist you for that application, normally the application takes 2 to 5 working days for different cost and it only can be applied when you arrive in Nepal, because your original passport is needed along the application. More about the Tibet Group Visa and cost please check here
Tibet Travel Permit and Its Process
Tibet travel permit is compulsory for all the travelers to visit Tibet and it can be obtained within 15 days prior to the trip starting dates, once you have booked the tour with us, we will obtain it for you which is included in the tour package. We need clear scan copies of your Chinese visa and passports to apply for the permit.
For more detail and latest permit updates, please check here
Etiquettes and Taboos:
Cultural Considerations: Be aware that your cultural values may differ from those of locals. These may include different concepts of time, personal space, communication, etc., which are not wrong or inferior, just different. Making the extra effort to respect local customs and cultural differences will enhance your interactions with locals during your time in Tibet and contribute to building mutual respect between locals and tourists.
Appropriate attire: Most Tibetans are pretty conservative from our western perspective so it is always polite to wear long pants at all times (guys and girls). If you wear shorts in rural villages or in the Bakhor district in Lhasa you will definitely get stranger looks than normal! Women should wear long pants or skirts. Shirts should not be revealing and bras should be worn. Unfortunately, many tourists ignore these cultural norms and can be seen in towns and villages wearing shorts and revealing summer attire; while it may be comfortable, it is not appropriate, especially when visiting monasteries. Don’t be shy to inform other tourists of the proper dress for monasteries; perhaps they are not aware of the cultural considerations and etiquette.
Generally we adhere to the original itinerary that we described but sometimes little alterations can be born due to the situations that are beyond our control. On the other hand, in order to make our trip for your personal experiences and flexible, we allowed our clients to make minor changes by discussing with us (office staff) and guide (field staff). The trip detail itinerary is a general guide to the tour and region, and any mention of specific destination or activities is by no means of guarantee that they will be encountered or carried due to the local circumstances and climate.
Keeping in touch with folks at home
If your family members or colleagues or friends want to connect with you during the tour, then you can either provide your guide mobile number to reach you during the trip or if you don’t know your guide number at the time, please don’t feel hesitate to provide our company contact numbers listed in the Emergency Contact section and we can find a way to reach you through guide mobile.
In order to provide you the maximum flexibility of what, where and when to eat, we generally doesn’t include meals in the tour cost except breakfast included at the hotels, but our local guide will suggest you good local restaurant per your requirements. In the cities like Lhasa, Tsedang, Gyantse, Shigatse and Zhangmu you can find good restaurants serve wide range of Tibetan food, continental food, Nepalese food, Indian food and Chinese cuisine, but in Tingri, EBC and in remote places, there is a limited choice for noodles and pan cakes. Approximate cost of a meal in Tibet is USD3 – USD10 per person/meal depending on your individual requirement.
Destination Guide & Recommended Reading List:
Tibet is a unique travel destination with some special considerations. It is highly recommended that you undertake some background reading before travel to Tibet. The more you learn about your destination, the more rewarding your travel experience will be. While we include a recommended reading list, which you can refer to for in-depth information, the following is a recommended reading list that might be helpful for you.
| Tibetan History | Tibetan Culture & Arts | Tibetan Religion |
Lhasa and the TAR:
- Tibet: The Lonely Planet Country Guide
- Trekking in Tibet: A Traveler's Guide by Gary McCue
- Tibet Handbook: Moon Travel Guide
- Fodor's Nepal, Tibet, and Bhutan: Expert Advice and Smart Choices: Where to Stay, Eat, and Explore On and Off the Beaten Path
- To a Mountain in Tibet by Colin Thubron
- The Mount Kailash Trek by Constance Roos/Sian Pritchard-Jones
- Trekking Tibet by Gary McCue/George Schaller
- The Heart of the World, A Journey to the Tibet's Lost Paradise by Ian Baker
- My Journey to Lhasa by Alexandra David-Neel
Kham and Amdo regions:
- Footprints Tibet Handbook by Gyurme Dorje
- Lonely Planet China (See Yunnan, Sichuan, Qinghai and Gansu Provinces)
- Bradt Guide Tibet by Michael Buckley
Domestic Flights and Trains to Tibet
There is only one international flight to Tibet, which is from Kathmandu (Nepal), and then there are lots of flights from different cities in Mainland China like Chengdu, Beijing, Shanghai and so on. Please Check Flight Schedule and Cost Here
There is no international train to Tibet and all the trains are from Mainland China like Chengdu, Beijing, Shanghai, Xining and so on. Please Check Train Schedule and Cost Here
Responsible Tourism Initiative:
Tourism has the potential to have positive and negative effects on the local environment and peoples. Making a conscious decision about how you travel can make a difference. Whether you are traveling to the Amazon rainforest or to Mt. Everest Base Camp, taking the initiative to reduce negative impacts and help sustain local communities is the responsible thing to do. Read more how we practice Responsible Travel
How & What To Pack
It is important to pack light and effectively, specially when you travelling to a new place, you need to know some necessary items should be carry with, depending on the length of your trip and where you go, you can get away with a minimal amount of clothing. One medium-large backpack or rolling duffle and a day pack should be just right for a 2-4 week trip. We suggest you to check our packing guideline here
Complaint & Feedback
We are always trying to provide the best service that can achieve a memorable Tibet tour for you, but sometimes you might be dissatisfied with some arrangement as different people has various aspirations and requirement, so please let us know instantly and we will try to solve everything right away to avoid repeating mistakes unknowingly. As we are looking for every single opportunity to improve our services, so your valuable suggestions and constructive complaints are very much appreciated.
“Tashi Delek Sonam!
We had a wonderful time traveling in Tibet and I thank you for making our trip so fabulous
You are an amazing and special man Sonam.
I thought you might like some copies of the photos I took when we went out with you.
Your mother is a beautiful person.
Thank you again”
“Our guide and driver were excellent always glad to help, went out their way to make our experience the best”.
“Visiting Tibet was a dream comes true for us, and particularly for Colin, who has wanted to visit the Potala Palace since he was a child. We've been to other Buddhist countries and regions -- Sikkim, Nepal, and all over Southeast Asia -- but Tibet seems particularly remote and starkly beautiful. We don't know anyone else who has been to Tibet."
“We were extremely pleased with our guide and itinerary, our guide gave us good suggestions for activities when we were on our own, responded well to our requests and was adaptable, and was good company for these few days. he talked with local people and monks to give us more interesting experiences.”
----From Ruth Rosenfeld and her son (USA), traveled in May, 2011.
“Overall very enjoyable experiences, thanks to our knowledgeable and caring guide. We look forward to coming back next time.”
“Base camp was very nice. The stay with a Tibetan family very interesting. “
“Overall had a great trip and were very happy with the driver and the guide. Especially Phurtse was always available to help and was very knowledgeable, especially on the monasteries and temples. Greatly enjoyed the personal touch on my birthday from Phurtse and Explore Tibet. Thank you.”
“We had a wonderful time travelling in Tibet and i thank you for making our trip so fabulous.”
“We had a wonderful time traveling in Tibet and i thank you for making our trip so fabulous. You are an amazing and special man Sonam Jamphel.”
In order to make it more convenient for our clients, we have arranged two shuttle buses a day, one in the morning and the other in the afternoon. So when you are purchasing the flight tickets, please take the shuttle bus timing into consideration. Of course, if you don’t want to wait for the shuttle bus, we can arrange a private airport pick-up and transfer for you, this service costs USD60 per time.
Shuttle bus pick-up time at the beginning of the tour: 1st shuttle bus departs from the airport at 12:30 2nd shuttle bus departs from the airport at 16:00
Shuttle bus transfer time at the end of the tour: 1st shuttle bus departs from the hotel at 7:30am 2nd shuttle bus departs from the hotel at 11:00am
Note: If you miss the free shuttle bus because of your flight delay or cancellation, then you will have to pay for the private airport pick-up, which costs USD60 per time. Also, please make sure to update your tour consultant about your new flight schedule.
Train station pick-up is totally for free, but sometimes you may need to wait for other travelers’ arrival around the same time.