- Day 01: Arrival in Kunming and transfer downton, 1900Mts/24Km. Kunming Jin Jiang Hotel **** on BB
You'll begin your journey to the diverse and captivating province of Yunnan from the capital city, Kunming. Upon arrival at the Kunming International Airport, meet your local guide and transfer to the hotel.
You will take a leisurely stroll along the Green Lake, a charming area of teahouses and small boutiques selling handicrafts and beautiful local paintings.
-- Kunming is the capital of southwest China's Yunnan province, a primarily agricultural province of 45 million. Kunming has a population of five million and is located in one of the world's most geographically, ethnically, biologically and linguistically diverse regions. Situated at 1,900 meters (6,233ft) above sea level and 25° north of the Equator it has a rather unique and pleasant climate for a Chinese city.
- Day 02: Kunming to Lunan Yi ethnic autonomous county, 120KM and back to Kunming. Kunming Jin Jiang Hotel **** on BB
After breakfast, you will be driving to the stone forest which is in Lunan Yi Nationality Autonomous County, at the distance of about 120 kilometers (75 miles) from Kunming and requires only a three-hour drive. It covers an area of 400 square kilometers (96,000 acres) and includes both large and small stone forests, as well as many other scenic spots.
The Stone Forest is one of the most important attractions of Yunnan. After lunch drive back Kunming to visit the Flowers and Birds Market in the downtown
- Day 03: Kunming-Dali,2007Mts/360Km by air Dali Landscape Hotel **** on BB
Take the morning flight to Dali which is a historically and culturally famous city of China, is renowned for her historical interest and Bai ethnic culture. After landing, you visit the Three Pagodas in Chongshen Monastery which has a history of over 1,800 years located at the foot of Cangshan Mountain facing to the Erhai Lake. Three Pagodas are made of three ancient independent pagodas forming a symmetrical triangle.
After lunch, you’ll cruise in Erhai Lake by the small boat to the Jinsuo Islet in the east Erhai Lake. There are 200 Bai ethnic families around 1000 people in Jinsuo Island.In Erhai Lake cruise, you will enjoy the green Cangshan Mountain and the Three Pagodas from a far as well as lots of birds and seagulls flying over the lake.
After landing, you will head for Xizhou Town to fully appreciate Bai-style traditional architectural courtyards, taste their fragrant Three-Course Tea and explore their distinctive culture. Visit Zhoucheng Village and the Bai people's Tie-dying cloth workshop where you can take some special souvenir with the Bai ethnic style. At last, you will visit the Ancient Dali Town, walk around the Foreigner Street and enjoy the relax time with local people. After climbing up to the City Wall of Dali, you will have panoramic view of the Erhai Lake.
- Day 04: Dali-Shaxi- Lijiang, 2400Mts/ 122Km by private car Lijiang Hexi Hotel **** on BB
In the morning ,drive from Dali to Shibaoshan mountain .The most prominent sight at ShibaoShan is the Stone Bell Temple with its 139, well preserved stone carvings. These magnificent stone carvings date as far back as 1300 years to the once powerful Nanzhao Kingdom during the Tang Dynasty (618-907). The carvings are testimony for a time when Mahayana Buddhism from Tibet started to spread in the Yunnan area. Another interesting sight is the 'Suspending Temple', also called the Baoxiang Temple. The Baoxiang temple was built on a ledge of a nearly vertical cliff and can only be reached by a long flight of stairs. On a clear day the views from the Baoxiang Temple over the Shaxi valley are simply magnificent.
after lunch drive to Shaxi , Shaxi is the last remaining ancient market town of its kind on the Tea & Horse Caravan Trail. This trail is a trading route that connected Tibet, Sichuan, and Yunnan to countries in southeast Asia, also called the Southern Silk Road.The World Monuments Fund (WMF) has listed Shaxi as one of the 100 most endangered sites in the world in 2001. Therefore, Shaxi has recently undergone massive efforts to preserve ancient architecture and culture. Shaxi also got recognized in the UNESCO World Heritage List. The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zürich (ETH) and the People's Government of Jianchuan County jointly established the Shaxi Rehabilitation Project (SRP).Then drive to Lijiang .
- Day 05: Exploring the old town of Lijiang , Lijiang Hexi Hotel **** on BB
In and around Lijiang; morning walk through Black Dragon Pool Park to learn about the Dongba shaman culture of the Naxi minority. Lunch in Yuhu village at the foot of Jade Dragon Mountain , visit home of Dr Joseph Rock, 20 th century National Geographic plant collector and Naxi expert. Spend the evening exploring the old town.
- Day 06: Lijiang-Gyalthang-Zhongdian(Shangri la),3200mts,187Km, 4 hrs drive Shangri La Old Town Hotel **** on BB
Drive up to Gyalthang / Zhongdian (now known as Shangri-La). The route will take you up through Tiger Leaping Gorge where the Yangtze River , running off the Tibetan plateau, suddenly turns north, tumbling through a spectacular very deep and narrow gauge. Continue driving up to the Tibetan plateau, stopping to climb up to the great limestone White Terraces at Baishultai. Overnight at the Songtsam Hotel.
- Day 07: Sightseeing Zhongdian. Shangri La Old Town Hotel **** on BB
In Zhongdian, visit Songtsenling Gompa (built 1679), an important teaching monastery, visit a local Tibetan village. Dinner in the Old Town where the local Tibetans dance every evening in the main square.
- Day 08: Shangri-La-Deqin,3550Mts/180Km Deqin Feilai Tanthang Hotel **** on BB
Drive to Deqin [6 hours or 180 km] in the morning, en route, visit Benzilan Town with the workshop of Clay Pottery, Dongzhulin Monastery, Baima Snow Mountain [4400m or 12,000ft
- Day 09: Deqin-Yubeng-Mingyong-Deqin Deqin Feilai Tanthang Hotel **** on BB
Get up early in the morning to enjoy the sunrise with the Prince Peak of Meili Snow Mountain [the highest and most beautiful peak of Yunnan with the altitude of 6740m or 19,000ft], then continue to drive to visit Mingyong Glacier, Yubeng village with the beautiful nature view en route. Drive back to the hotel
- Day 10: Deqin-Shangrila Shangrila old town hotel on BB
Drive back to Shangrila and free afternoon.
- Day 11-12: Free day in Shangrila and going around the old town. Shangrila old town hotel on BB
Going around the market and old town of Shangrila to get to know more about Gyelthang.
- Day 13: Shangrila-Lhasa, arrival at Lhasa Gongkar airport and transfer to Tsetang.(3600Mts/ 100Km ) Hotel on B.B
You will be warmly welcomed by our Tibetan guide and driver and accompany you to the cradle city of Tsetang along with the view of Bharmaputra, known as Yarlung Tsangpo in Tibetan and the greenery valley of Yarlong. Afternoon, drive to Yumbu Lhakang which is to the south east of Tsetang at the distance of 15 Km. Visit Yumbu Lhakang. YUMBU LHAKANG is the first Tibetan building, founded in 127 BC for their first King, Nyatri Tsenpo and it had been used as the palace by the respective Numbers of Tibetan Kings. Nowadays, the castle is transformed into a small chapel with a few monks. The chapel is dedicated to the statues of some of the most famous Tibetan kings including Sonagtsan Gampo. After the sightseeing to Yumbu Lhakang, we will drive back on the same valley down and visit Traduk temple on the way. Tranduk is one of the oldest temples built by king Songtsan Gampo in 7th century. Nowadays, it is a temple with many small chapels.
- Day 14: Drive from Tsetang-Samye monastery-Lhasa.(3650Mts/ 160Km ) Hotel on B.B
You will start your tour at 9Am and drive along the Yarlung Tsangpo river where it joins the Bharmaputra river at Chushur bridge. On the way, we will visit Samye monastery. Samye is the first monastery of Tibet and it is the mother monastery of the Nyingmapa school or red hat sect. After lunch, we will drive to Lhasa.
- Day 15: Sight seeing Lhasa, Potala Palace, Jokang temple and Bharkor. Hotel on B.B
After Breakfast, you will start from the hotel and drive towards Potala square. Leave the car behind and must be ready and take your challenge to climb more than hundred steps of the Potala Palance. The Potala Palace was originally built in the 7th century by Tibetan King Songtsan Gampo but the one to the present size was expended by the 5th Dalaia Lama. It has thirteen storey’s high with more than a thousand rooms and divided with White and Red Palace.
After the sightseeing of the Potala Palace, walk around the Potala Palace with pilgrimages and you can experience the ancient tradition of Tibetans, walking around Potala, praying matras. The Kora takes you around 40 minutes. It is also good to acclimatize to the high altitude.
After lunch, you will visit Jokang temple. Jokang temple is the oldest temple of Tibet which was built by King Songtsan Gampo in the 7th century and it is housed to the most sacred statue of Bhudha Shakyamuni brought from mainland China by the princess Wangchen of the Tang court. Walking around the Bharkor is another interesting thing during your tour in lhasa. You will meet many different people in Bharkor.
- Day 16: Sightseeing Lhasa, Pabongka, Chubsang nunnery and Sera monastery. Hotel on B.B
Drive to and explore Pabongka Monastery; hike downhill to Chupsang Nunnery; walk to Sera Monastery, where we have a picnic lunch; depending on availability, make your own prayer flag at Sera’s printing center and witness monks debate age-old scripts in the courtyard.
- Day 17: Lhasa-Basumtso,3700Mts/400Km 7hrs drive ( because of speed limit ) Local guest house on full board
After breakfast,head to lake Basumtso,which is the national forest park. and you will see beautiful nomad camps on the way. We will over night in Basumtso with a very beautiful landscape of the lake it self and the moutain surrounding it. There is a very beautiful small temple and a cave Padamasavawa which has more than a thousand years history but the temple was rebuilt 20 years back
- Day 18: Basumtso-Nyingtri, 2900Mts/125Km Mingzhu Grand hotel
You will continuously drive along the Nyangchu river and you can see beautiful peach trees where they are blossoming the flowers. Check in hotel and rest for a while.
Afternoon, visit Daktse Yungdrongling monastery which is one of the most sacred Bong monastery in Nyingtri and two other Bon monasteries Kushu monastery and Gyeri Mindrol Ling monastery
- Day 19: Nyintri-Lunang-Nyingtri(2900mts/125Km) Mingzhu grand hotel
Drive to Lunang via Serkyim la pass(4515mts). From the top of the pass, you will enjoy the fantastic view of Namchark Barwa snow capped mountain. Lunang is one of the most beautiful villages in Kongpo region which is located in a small forested area with farming lands, beautiful grassland and snow capped mountain above. There you can see some typical Kongpo traditions and customs including arrow shooting.
- Day 20: Bayi-Lamaling temple and Buchu Lhakang-Bai. Mingzhu grand hotel
Start at around 9 Am from your hotel and drive on a narrow road along the Yarlung Tsangpo river in a rocky forested gorge and visit Buchu Sergyi Lhakang.
Buchu Sergyi Lhakang is the most ancient Buddhist temple in Kongpo and one of the four border taming temples ( Tadul Lhakang ) built by King Songtsan Gampo in the seventh century. It was constructed according to geomantic theory on the right elbow of Supine ogress who represented the Tibetan land. Originally the temple was associated with NYingma pa tradition. By the 17 th century, Buchu Sergyi Lhakang was transformed in to Gelukpa, or yellow hat sect tradition. The temple is 2 storey high, dominated by golden roof and an old statue of Padmasambhava and there around 8 monks these days. After Buchu Lhakang, we will continue to Zangtok peri temple. It is one of the most sacred temple since it was blessed by Guru Rinpoche in the 8th Century. It is beautiful located up in a forested hill with good view of the Kongpo valley.
- Day 21: Bai– Ganden - Drigung- Terdom (4400 m) 380 km 7h Guest house
Today you will be driving to Gaden monastery at the distance of 170 Km .
Ganden Monastery: It is the first monastery of the yellow hat sect, founded in the 14th century by Tsongka psa himself up in a hill . You can see beautiful Tibetan villages and yaks while you are driving up to the monastery from Lhasa . You will continue to Tridom at the distance of 110Km with a very similar scenery including villages.
- Day 22: Drive to Reting monastery via Lhundrup county & Pungdo village (4100mts 120km ) Guest house
Today you will be driving to Digung Thil monastery first at the distance of 10Km and Dhigung Thil monastery is the mother monster of Dhigung Kagyupa sect and it has more than 600 years history. After finishing the sightseeing there, you will be driving to Reting Monastery at the distance of around 120Km via Chakla pass and it will take you between 3 and 4 hrs to get there. Reting is the Monastery of the Kadam pa sect in Tibetan Buddhism, founded by Dom Tonpa in the 11th century. The monastery is beautiful located in the sandal wood, like surrounded by a small sandal wood forest.
- Day 23: Drive to Namtso lake via Damshong county, visit Tashido hermitage(4718Mts,180 Km) Guest house
Today we will be driving to Lake Namtso , 180Km , takes you there around 4 hrs. You will start the visit to Reting Monastery for an hour starting from 9 Am and then at around 10Am you will head towards to Namtso Lake and get you there around 1 Pm.
- Day 24: Drive to Tsurpu monastery via Yambachan hot spring and then to Lhasa (3650Mts/300Km) Gang Gyen hotel****
Explore the lake and Tashi Do hermitage with numerous caves that you can visit while walking around Tashi Do hermitage and then drive to Tsurphu monastery.
Tsurphu is the seat of the Karmapa and it was founded in the 1180s by the first Karmapa Dusum Kyenpa, some forty years after he established the Karmapa order in Kham, the place where he was born and Tsurphu was the third Karmapa monastery to be built and after the death of the first Karmapa, it became the head monastery for the Sakyapa order. The monastery is composed of one main assembly hall and some chapels. The main object of the monastery are some very revered relics of the 16 th Karmapa, as well as statues of Amitabha and Shakyamuni. Tsurphu has 300 monks nowadays.
Return to Lhasa at the distance of 70Km. On the way, visit Nenang monastery.
- Day 25: Drive from Lhasa to Gyangtse.(3950Mts/ 280Km ) Yeti Hotel ***
You will start your tour at around 9Am from your hotel and then drive towards Gyangtse through 3 big mountain passes, Kampa La, Karo La, Simila respectively. Karola is the highest pass among them which is over 5000Mts with it's most beautiful glaciers, beautiful Yamdrok lake emerged as coral color from the top of Kampala pass. You will have your lunch at Nakartse country which is just between the Yamdrok lake and Karola glaciers.
- Day 26: Drive from Gyangtse to Shigatse. (3900mts/ 90Km ) Mansarovar Hotel ***
You will start your tour at around 9Am from your hotel and then drive towards Palchoe monastery for a few minutes. Visit Palchoe monastery and Kubum Pagoda stupa. After the sightseeing, You will have your lunch and then continue your journey to Shigatse by passing one of the biggest farming land in Tibet where people grow barley, wheat, different kinds of vegetables.Pm visit Tashi Lhunpo monastery and old market of Shigatse.
- Day 27: Drive from Shigatse to Sakya monastery, (4050Mts/ 125KM ) Mansarovar hotel ***
You will start your tour at around 9.30Am from your hotel and drive through one big mountain passes, Tsola 4500Mts and some beautiful villages on the way. Sakya monastery was built in 12 th century by Khon Konchok Gyelpo from Sakya clan. The monastery was originally built for the schools of Sakya tribe and later on it was expended to the present size by Dogon Chogyel Pakpa. Drogon Chogyel Phakpa is the first Tibetan Lama who took the ruling power in Tibet. Sakya is the mother monastery of Sakyapa sect. The temples of North Sakya were built first and within these temples, the Gorum temple to the northeast was the oldest, built in 1073 by Khon Konchok Gyelpo. The Utse Nyingpa, Utse Sarpa, Manjughosa temples were constructed by Sachen Kunga Nyingpo, Choje Drakpa Gyeltsen and Sakya Pandita Kunga Gyeltsen around the meditation cave of Sachen but most of those temples are invisible now.The temples of South Sakya, composed of one main assembly hall, college buildings, palaces and some chapels were gradually built during the time of Drogon Chogyel Phakpa. The Sakya monastery has 160 monks nowadays.
- Day 28: Drive from Sakya-Drangthang-Dingri-Rongbuk monastery. ( 5000Mts/270Km Guest house
You will start your tour at 9Am and drive through Pangla pass 5000Mts from which you will have a fantastic view of Mount Everest, Lhotse and Makalu respectively which are over 8000Mts. After the lunch in Rongbuk monastery, you will visit the world's highest monastery, Rongbuk. Walk up to Everest base camp which takes you an hour and half. Explore Everest base camp and back to Rongbuk monastery. When the sun sets, you will have a fantastic view of Mount Everest in the red colored sun shade.
- Day 29: Two hrs trek from Rongbuk to Everest Base camp.(5200Mts/ 8Km ) Guest house
You will start your trek from Rongbuk monastery at around 10Am and it will take you to two hrs to get there. On the way you can visit a miraculous cave of Mila Repa . After two hrs trek, you get to the Everest base camp. It is the best point of enjoying the world's highest mountain and taking photos of it. You can have a basic lunch at Everest Base camp since there are many local tented tea houses where they sell instant noodles or bread etc.
- Day 30: Drive Everest Base Camp- Lhatse-Ngamringtso-Sangsang (4676Mts/ 370Km). Guest house
Enjoy the morning sunrise view on the Everest top, have breakfast and then drive towards Lhatse which is a farming land county after Shigatse and then continue to Sangsang via several small passes and beautiful Ngaring lake. You will start seeing beautiful grassland and nomad camps after Ngaring.
- Day 31: Sangsang - Raga- Tagyeltso- Mendong (Tsochen) (4545 m) 320Km Guest house
- Day 32: Tsochen. - Dawa Tso- Gertse (4800 m) 390Km Guest house
- Day 33: Gertse – Tarab Tso – Shiquanhe (Ali) (4300 m) 350 km Guest house
- Day 34: Piang Dungkar (4200 m) 220Km Guest house
Today you will be driving back through the same pass of Jiangkyi la pass ( 5100 Mts ) get into the valley of Dungkar .
DUNGKAR PIYANG has around 1100 ye ars history and the murals in the cave are possibly the oldest in Ngari region. The oldest temple at Dungkar is attributed to Princess Lhei Metok, daughter of King Yeshe-O in the 10 th century, but the building that is most prominent nowadays is Tashi Choling. Tashi Choling was built for Tsongkapa's student Ngawang Drakpa in the 15 th century. Piyang is around 3Km from Dungkar at the far end of the valley. The oldest building in Piyang was the Karsak Lhakhang, attributed to King Yeshe-O. Both Dungkar and Piyang have extremely gorgeous paintings. Lodge
- Day 35: Dungkar to Tholing,3660m/ 80Km .Hotel
Visit Tholing monastery and Guge Kingdom. It is just 20Km drive to Guge Kingdom from Tholing monastery.
GUGE KINGDOM was founded in the late 10 th century by lineages of Lang Dharma, King Palkor Tsen's son Kyede Nyima Gon after the Tsenpo period was diminished in the late 10 th century and it was resided by 16 lineages of the Kings respectively. The citadel of Guge is situated up on a giant cliff and it has (300Meters) in height and 18,0000 square Meters in length. Eventhough the citadel of Guge was heavily destroyed, it still remains important Buddhist arts in Tsaparang. The wall paintings and the statues paint were influenced by Kashmiri style in 11 th century, Newari style in 14 th and 15th century, and Tibetan style in 17 th century respectively. The least damaged temples now are White, Red and Demchok temples and you can see damaged heads or shoulders of the statues and destroyed wall paintings on the wall in those temples.
THOLING MONASTERY the temples and religious buildings of Tholing are the most significant in far west Tibet . The monastery was constructed under the guidance of the great Tibetan translator Rinchen Zangpo in around 11 th century although some historian refers to the date of 996.During his life time, he is said to have built 108 temples throughout far west Tibet and Ladhak eventhough few still exist, those at Tholing are considered to be the best examples of Guge style of Buddhist art. Tholing was the main religious centre prior to the visit of the great Indian Pandit Atisha due to the influence of Rinchen Zangpo. Atisha was invited by Rinchen Zangpo under the instruction of the Guge King Yeshe-O. As the history goes by, Yeshe-O was very devoted to Rinchen Zangpo's activities and he himself founded the monasteries in Tholing. Yeshe-O sent his men to India to invite Atisha several times but they returned after being refused their request several times. Yeseh-O sacrificed all his life in order to invite Atisha. He was captured by invading troops from Qarloq who demanded ransom. When Yeshe-O's nephew Jangchub O tried to save his life, Yeshe- O responded to his nephew by saying " I am an old man. My life now is short. Use the ransom to invite and assist Atisha to come to Tibet . When Atisha was moved by Yeshe-O's dedication to Buddhism, Atisha finally agreed to visit Tibet and he was amazed to see Buddhism flourishing when he arrived in Guge. Hotel
- Day 36: Tholing -Tirthapuri –Shangshonng 4330Mts/ 180Km. Lodge
Morning drive to Tirthapuri and then excursion to Kyunglung Guru Gyam and Shangshang ruins. There you can visit some beautiful paintings and the mud towers of Shangshung.
- Day 37: Drive to Lake Mansarovar-Chiu Gompa, 4590Mts/60Km. Guest house
After two hrs drive, you will reach Lake Mansarovar. Enjoy walking around the lake and visit the Chiu monastery. From the courtyard of the monastery, you will have a fantastic view of Mt. Kailash, lake Mansarovar and Gurla Mandata snow capped mountain which is located to the south east of the lake Mansarovar.
- Day 38: Dharchen trek to Dhiraphuk (5210Mts/18Km) Lodge
Today is the first day of your Kailash Kora which is totally around 53Km . You start your Kora from Darchen and after like 2 hrs walk, you will face Darpo Che where there is a huge prayer flag pole which is annually replaced by the pilgrimages on 15 th of forth Lunar month, known as Saga Dawa festival, As well as Trulku monastery on your leftside up on the hill side. You can also see ibex and blue sheep running in the rocky hillside while you are walking and then you will reach Dhira Phuk which was a monastery before but nowadays you can only see the ruins of the monastery as the monastery was destroyed in the cultural revolution.Camp
- Day 39: Trek to Zutrul Phuk (4750Mts) via crossing Drolma la pass(5200Mts/15KM) Lodge
Today is the second of your Kailash Kora which is indeed the hardest day of your three days trek. You will have to climb up to the top of Drolma La pass which is more than 5000Mt. There will be three sloppy hike to get to the top of Drolma La pass from Dhira Phuk and then pretty steep down hill with rocky path all the way to the valley. On the right side of the down hill path, there is a small lake called Thuje Lake, meaning compassionate lake.Zutrul Phuk was the cave where Mila Repa and Nagro Bonchung debated for their religion sects and nowadays, it is a small monastery.Camp
- Day 40: Trek to Dharchen and then to Lake Mansarovar-Baryang, 4750mts, 250Km. Guest house
Trek around Kailash and we drive back, enjoying the spacious plateau profiting to enhance our daily meditations.
- Day 41: Baryang-Saga-Sangsang, 4676mts, 385Km Guest house
It's in the vastness of the Changtang, Tibetan plateau, that we measure the Tibetan space from where suddenly emerge herds of gazelles or Kyang, wild donkeys.
- Day 42: Drive to Shigatse (3900Mts/340Km) Hotel Mansarovar***
After passing several mountain passes, suddenly emerge flocks of Tibetan villages and their farming lands where people basically live on farming which is a different way of surviving from the people in Kaialsh area that they live on rearing animals.
- Day 43: Drive from Shigatse to Lhasa (3650Mts/ 280KM ) Hotel on B.B
You will start your tour at around 9.30Am from your hotel and drive along the Bharmaputra river with a landscape of sandy hills, villages, and Rulak Yungdrung ling at the otherside of the river. You will have lunch in a small town called Nyenmo which is the border point between Shigatse and Lhasa . Free afternoon for shopping.
- Day 44: Drive from Lhasa to Lhasa Gongkar airport.(3600Mts/ 60Km ) End the trip