LHASA: MOUNT KAILASH AND THE GUGE KINGDOM

This is a great adventure, a spiritual journey through the vast, arid Tibetan plateau visiting all the shrines and palaces, high mountain lakes, crossing passes, stopping at hot springs, and visiting ruins in the Guge Kingdom. A challenging time is faced on the way to Mount Kailash, the holy pilgrimage site for three religions. A drive to Holy Lake Manasarovar and then down to Nepal, with a night halt at historic Nuwakot. A fascinating journey!

This is a unique adventure, a physically challenging spiritual journey from the verdant hillsides of Nepal to the arid desert landscape of Tibet. Traveling in the high altitude of the Tibetan plateau, there are many challenges to face before reaching Mount Kailash, the holy pilgrimage site for Hindus, Buddhists, and followers of the Bon religion. Along the way, we visit temples and monasteries that have shaped the lives of countless devout people of Tibet. Arriving in Kathmandu, we already feel the strong vibes of religious fervor shared by Hindus and Buddhists living side by side in perfect harmony.

A spectacular flight with views of the Himalayas from Mount Everest all the way to Kangchenjunga takes us to Lhasa in Tibet. For two days, we lose ourselves in the ancient world of monasteries and bazaars: the Potala Palace, Jokhang, the Barkhor Market, and the great monastic universities of Drepung and Sera are some of the attractions. Then, traveling large distances, we go across the high Tibetan Plateau to the Guge Kingdom. We cross the Dolma La Pass, (more than 5,700m high) and reach the sacred Mount Kailash.
HIGHLIGHTS
- The tour of Kailash and the holy Lake Manasarovar.
- The Guge Kingdom: the Tholing Monastery and the Tsaparang Ruins.
- The heart of Tibet: Lhasa, Gyantse, and Shigatse.
- The wilderness and the vast range of landscapes: turquoise lakes, the mythical Himalayan peaks, and the steep descent to Nepal.
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Gallery

Itinerary

  • Level of Trek: Moderate
  • Best Period: May - June & September
  • Duration: 21 Days
  • Highest Altitude: 5700 Meters
  • Flights: Kathmandu - Lhasa
  • Accomodation: Hotel, Camp & Guest House

For your next trek with us in the Himalayas, travel light and aware: Base Camp offers you a biodegradable soap made in Nepal, to leave no trace ...

Day
Airport pick-up, transfer to hotel and check-in.
- Accommodation: Hotel Holy Himalaya on BB basis
Day reserved for visa formalities.
- Accommodation: Hotel Holy Himalaya on BB basis

Days reserved for visa formalities.
- Accommodation: Hotel Holy Himalaya on BB basis

Days reserved for visa formalities.
- Accommodation: Hotel Holy Himalaya on BB basis

We catch the morning flight to Lhasa. We circle and admire the Everest range from the north side during the flight. Then from the airport, we drive for 1½ hours to reach Lhasa city (3,650 m). Check-in and acclimatization walk through the old town.
- Accommodation: Hotel Kyichu on a BB basis.

We start our tour with visits to the most popular cultural sites of the ancient Tibetan capital. We first head for the Potala Palace, the residence of the Dalai Lama before he left Tibet in1959. Next, we visit the Jokhang Temple, the most sacred temple in central Tibet, and a renowned pilgrimage site. From there we go on to the Barkhor Market and finally visit the Dalai Lama’s Summer Palace, the Norbulinka built within a 36-hectare garden, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- Accommodation: Same hotel as the previous day.

Today we visit the other well-known cultural monuments of Lhasa, the monastic complex of Drepung, the largest of Tibetan monasteries, and a Gelug university monastery. We then move on to the Sera Monastery, which is 2 km north of Lhasa. It is also a Gelug university monastery.
- Accommodation: Kyichu on a BB basis.

We drive to Shigatse, the second-largest city in Tibet. We take a mountain road and cross the Kampa La Pass and come across the pristine, turquoise Yamdrok Lake (4,441m) high in the mountains. Then, we cross the Karo La Pass at more than 5000 m at the foot of the glaciers.
We carry on to Gyantse in the Nyang Chu valley along the old trade route to Sikkim. We visit the monastery and the famous Kumbum stupa. We finally head towards Shigatse, 280 km southwest of Lhasa.
- Accommodation: Hotel Manasarovar on a BB basis.

We drive along the South Tibetan highway and reach the high Tibetan Plateau at more than 4000 m, between the Himalayas and the Brahmaputra River (Tsangpo). We encounter many nomad camps, herds of kiangs, gazelles and antelopes, sometimes even packs of jackals, or lone wolves.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House.

Today’s drive takes us westward to Mount Kailash. We find ourselves among grandiose landscapes and infinite spaces stretching to the horizon.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House
We pass close to Lake Manasarovar with the imposing Mount Kailash in the backdrop. As we move away, we lose sight of it, but we see it once again as we arrive at the Guge Kingdom. We drive to the hot springs of Tirthapuri where pilgrims arrive to bathe after their trip to Mount Kailash.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House
We make a trip to the Gurugyam troglodyte hermitages and the Tholing Monasteries (3.800m). Tholing Monastery was built in 997 AD by Yeshe - O, the second king of the Guge kingdom.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House
We visit the ruins of the Tsaparang fortress, the former capital of the Guge Kingdom, and a major archaeological site in the Khyunglung Valley in Tibet’s western desert. There are remarkable Buddhist frescoes here, as the Guge Kingdom housed a vibrant civilization and was a source of the Buddhist Renaissance in Tibet.
Its territory included the valleys of Zanskar, Upper Kinnaur, Lahul and Spiti, currently in Himachal Pradesh, India. Its two capitals used to be Tholing and Tsaparang. It was founded by a grandson of King Langdarma (803-841), the last ruler of the Yarlung dynasty. The Bengali sage Atisha, the architect of this Renaissance, was invited to the Guge Kingdom in the 12th century.
- Accommodation: Himalaya Hotel
Today we visit the Bönpo Monastery of Dungkar. Bön is a pre-Buddhist animist religion with similarities to Mongolian Tengrism that preceded it. It influenced Tibetan Buddhism. then we drive to Tharboche, starting point of the Mount Kailash Kora and the chosen site for our bivouac.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House

We get on the Kora (tour) pilgrimage route of Mount Kailash. It takes three days of walking to perform the ritual circumambulation and to enjoy the extraordinary ambiance of this religious site which is important to Buddhists, Hindus, and Bönpo followers.
Some pilgrims do the tour in one day, while others who prostrate themselves all the way, take much longer. Some even settle down at the foot of the sacred mountain to meditate.
We set up camp near the Diraphuk Monastery (4,910m).
- Duration of hike: 5 hr
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House

We head for the highest spot on our trip, the Dolma La Pass at 5,700 m.
Once we are through the pass, we descend through rough terrain to bivouac near the Milarepa Cave.
- Duration of hike: 8 hrs
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House

A 3-hour hike takes us to the final point of the Kora in Darchen where we find our vehicle waiting for our arrival. We then drive a short distance to reach the holy Lake Manasarovar. We walk along the shores of the lake between Trugo and the Chiu Gompa Monastery perched on a ridge.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House

We spend the early hours of the morning on the shores of the lake where, sometimes, Indian sadhus do their ablutions. We head back to Baryand on the East.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House

After Sarga, we change direction to the south towards Shisha Pangma (8000m) along the Great Himalayas to Pegu Tso, a beautiful mountain lake.
- Accommodation: Basic Guest House
We descend from Kyirong: 24 km from town, down to the Trishuli Valley, and then up to the Sino-Nepalese border. We then cross the Langtang National Park via Syabrubesi and Dhunche. It is a region inhabited by Tibetan and Tamang people. We then reach Nuwakot, where the landscape is lush green with terraced hillsides. We drive 8 km up on a paved road through a sal and pine forest to reach Nuwakot Durbar, an ancient fortress, and palace of the Gorkha kings. The fortress is undergoing restoration after it was damaged during the earthquake of 25th April 2015. We visit the bazaar, the temple, and the palace. We spend the night in a deluxe resort.
- Accommodation: Famous Farm on half board.

From Nuwakot we drive for 5 hours to reach Kathmandu. Free day in the city.
- Accommodation: Hotel Holy Himalaya on BB basis.

Transfer to TIA (Kathmandu Airport) for your return flight.
End of our services.

NOTES

01. Contact us for accommodation classification with a supplement to Darchen and Saga.
02. It is not possible to have a single room and there will be only guest house with toilet non attach with room and also
without bathroom provision during nights in the guest house at Kailash



What's included

- Transfers by private vehicle according to the itinerary
- 5 nights at the Holy Himalaya hotel on BB in Kathmandu
- 1 night at Famous Farmhouse on half board in Nuwakot
- Permit Langtang
- Accompaniment by an English speaking guide during border transfer
- stay on BB in Tibet
- Accommodation according to the itinerary in hotel and guest house
- An English-speaking Tibetan guide for the whole of stay in Tibet
- Permit required from Tibet
- Site visits and entries according to the itinerary
- Oxygen bottles available
- Permission livraison during your transit in China

What's not included

- Meals in Kathmandu and Lhasa, except breakfast
- International flight and train
- Visa for Nepal
- Chinese Visa
- Compulsory repatriation insurance
- Expenditures and personal equipment, tips, drinks, etc.
Question? Make an inquiry or call (977-1) 441 55 73