Kathmandu to Lhasa Overland Budget Tour without Everest Basecamp is a 8 days 7 nights tour from Kyirong Border to Lhasa. Kyirong Border was only opened for operation in August 2017. The Zhangmu Border has remained closed after the Nepal earthquake in April 2015.
This is a budget friendly yet enjoyable way to travel to Tibet from Nepal via scenic road.
The beautiful scenery on the road cannot be described with words. You will see Mt Everest from afar while crossing the Gyatsola Pass (5200m), you will drive through Gyatchu La (5220m), the highest Pass en route to Lhasa.
Other passes are Simi La Pass (4200m), Karo La Pass (5035m) – Located between Between Yamdrok Lake and Gyantse and Kampa La Pass (4794m) – located between Lhasa and Gyantse, views of Yamdrok Lake.
You will visit Palchoe Monastery and its Kubum Pagoda Stupa, Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street, Drepung Monastery, and Sera Monastery.
The most beautiful scenery will be on the road, all the way from the Nepal Tibet Border – Kyirong via Peikutso Lake (4600m) – Dingri (4300m) – Lhatse (4050m) – Shigatse (3900m) – Gyantse (3950m) – Yamdrok Lake (4441m)- Lhasa (3650m) and departure!
This is a journey that you must experience once in your lifetime.
0800am: Pick up from Kathmandu hotel. We will send you to the Kyirong border via Jeep.
0200pm: Arrive at the Nepal Tibet Kyirong border, the newly opened entry point for tourists between Nepal and Tibet in August 2017. It will be a 150km drive from Kathmandu. Your Tibetan guide and driver will pick you up at the border and handle the necessary immigration paperwork. You will continue the drive to Kyirong town thereafter, about 20km from the border. Today, you will have travelled 170km in total on a rough terrain.
Highlight: First sight of Mt Everest and crossing the highest pass – Gyatsola (5200m)
After breakfast, you will start your journey to Lhatse, about 347km away. You will drive pass the the most sacred cave of Milarepa Yogi which dates back to the 11th century, and is also the birthplace of Milarepa. We will drive through Kyirong Pass (4900m), and drive along the beautiful Peikutso Lake (4600m) and continue to Old Dingri (4300m) about 180km from Kyirong (2800m).
The scenery is beautiful with Shisha Bangma snow mountain on the right and Peikutso Lake on the left . If the weather is nice, you will be able to see the clear faces of the giants of the Himalaya Range – Mt. Everest (8848m), Mt. Shishapangma (8012m), Mt. Qowowuyag (8201m), Mt. Lhotse (8516m), and Mt. Mayalu (8463m). The beautiful Peikutso Lake can be seen easily too. You will be driving on the Friendship Highway and reach Lhatse after crossing the highest pass called Gyatsola at the elevation of 5200m.
Highlights: Drive through Gyatchu La (5220m) – Highest Pass en route to Lhasa
You will start your scenic drive at about 9.30am from your hotel. We will drive through Gyatchu La (5220m), the highest pass en route to Lhasa and you will see a lot of beautiful villages and amazing landscape.
We will stop by for a visit at Shakya Monastery on the way. You will have your lunch at Shigatse, and check into your hotel. After lunch, we will head for the Tashi Lhunpo monastery.
Tashi Lhunpo Monastery was founded in the year of 1447 by the 1st Dalai Lama. It is a historic and culturally important monastery in Shigatse, the second-largest city in Tibet. It is famous as the seat of successive Panchen Lama, who is another leader of Tibetan Buddhism. The monastery is an interesting sprawling amalgam of traditional Tibetan monastic style halls, chapels and other structures connected by precipitous steps and narrow cobblestone alleys.
Highlights: Scenic drive + Palchoe Monastery and its Kubum Pagoda Stupa
You will start your tour at about 9am from your hotel and then drive to Gyangtse – the third largest city in Tibet. We will have lunch in Gyangtse and check into your hotel.
After lunch we will visit the Palchoe Monastery and Kubum Pagoda Stupa. In the afternoon, explore the old town of Gyangtse. Palchoe Monastery was founded in the year 1436. This monastery is famous for its Kubum Pagoda Stupa, a magnificent stupa and symbol of the monastery. The Myriad Buddha Stupa consists of hundreds of chapels arranged in layers, housing 100,000 images of Buddhas.
You will start your tour at about 9am from your hotel. We will drive towards Lhasa via 3 big mountain passes named:
Karo La is the highest of the passes at over 5035m, with the most beautiful glaciers. The beautiful Yamdrok Lake can be seen as coral color from the top of Kampa La Pass.
Lunch will be held at Nakartse Country which located between the Yamdrok Lake and the Karo La glaciers. Yamdrok Lake(4441m) is known as one of the “Three Holy Lakes” in Tibet. The water is as clear as crystal, a view with which no words can describe. See it for yourself! Drive to Lhasa after the visits, where we will spend the night.
Highlights: Potala Palace + Jokhang Temple + Barkhor Street.
After breakfast, we will go to the “must visit” attraction of Tibet – Potala Palace. It is known as the highest palace in the world standing on the Red Hill of Lhasa. The Potala Palace is a house of Tibetan history, culture, religion and art.
There are two attractions for you to visit in the afternoon – Jokhang Temple & Barkhor Street. First you’ll visit the Jokhang Temple. As the house of the Buddha, Jokhang is the holiest destination for all Tibetan pilgrims; as the spiritual center of Tibet. Jokhang Temple is the perfect place for you to experience the devotion of Tibetans.
The last activity is wandering along the crowded Barkhor Street. You can choose to participate in religious activities with the locals, shop for souvenirs, sample some street food, or just wander around the street. Bharkor Street is the most colourful market in Tibet and is best place to shop at.
Highlights: Drepung Monastery + Sera Monastery
After breakfast, we will drive for about 30 minutes to visit the Drepung Monastery. This monastery has over 500 years of history. It used to be the largest monastery in the world with a total of 10,000 monks. Many precious stupa, sculptures, paintings, and Thangka are displayed in the hundreds of chapels. And the annual Shoton Festival is organized here.
In the afternoon, you will visit Sera Monastery, which is famous for its “Buddhism Scriptures Debating”. It is only 3km away from Lhasa city. The main attraction of this monastery is to see the monks debating. The debates are held daily from 3pm – 5pm, except for Sundays.
Highlight: Bye Bye Tibet!
After breakfast, you will carry on your own journey either by train to Chengdu, by flight to Kathmandu, or by flight to any part of the world! We will drop you to either train station or airport! Bon voyage until we meet again!
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