Kathmandu to Mt Kailash
14 Days/13 Nights
Kathmandu-Nyalam-Saga-Paryang-Lake Manasarovara-Darchen-Mount Kailash Circuit and retrace drive.
After a brief sightseeing of Nepal’s capital city,Kathmandu, where you also complete China / Tibet permit formalities; you and our Nepalese crew drive and cross into the Tibetan plateau slowly acclimating. An additional day halt is provided at Nylam to get properly acclimatized. With 4 WD deluxe Land cruisers 4500/80, you drive along the dirt road parallel to the snowcapped peaks of Himalayas to the south and the Tibetan mountains to the north. The journey also involves crossing Bramhaputra River (YarlungTsangpo) by ferry and driving through several other smaller streams. It also includes crossing several high mountain passes (averaging 5000m/16,400 ft) that offer splendid views before finally arriving at the holy Lake Manasarovara . Hindus consider this as the female energy, or "yoni" of the universe, in contrast to the male energy or "lingum" of Kailash.
Our trips are scheduled so that you are at the holy lake for the full moon and if you are a Hindu or Buddhist pilgrim, you may want to perform puja ritual here. Others can just drive around the lake and enjoy the scenery, and watch the rituals. Continue driving to Darchen, and not far from there, you embark on a 3 day sacred kora trek (53 kms/34 miles) including a crossing of the 18,600-foot Drolma La. The pack animals (Yaks) carrying supplies including your gearand you are accompanied by our Nepalese and Tibetan crew. The first two days take between 6-7 hours trek but the last day of the trek is an easy 2-3 hrs walk down on to the Barga plain.
After completing the trek, retrace your drive all the way back to Kathmandu. Those seeking an extension to Lhasa, will split from from Saga. From Saga, you will reach Lhasa in 4 days with stops in Lhatse, Shigatse and Gyantse.
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu . (D)
Meet our representative at the airport and transfer to the hotel. Free day at leisure. Welcome dinner with cultural performance. Accommodation in a deluxe 5 star hotel.
Day 02: At Kathmandu
While we apply for your Chinese visa, you will explore the ancient medieval arts and architecture of Kathmandu . Visit Pashupatinath, holiest of the Hindu temples, Bodhanath-the biggest Buddhist stupa and medieval principality of Bhaktapuralso known as the city of devotees. Free afternoon for you to prepare for the trip.Overnight hotel.
Day 03: Drive to Nyalam (B/L/D)
Altitude 12,333 ft; distance 97 miles and about 6-7 drive
Depart from Kathmandu early in the morning. Breakfast stop atDhulikhel hill resort. In total, Kathmandu to the Tibet border is 113km through the villages, roadside bazaars and terraced hills that takes a total of about 4 hours to get to the Tibetan border. On an inclement weather day, there may be some landslide spots which you have to walk across and change to a locally available vehicle. After clearing immigration formalities on both the Nepal and China side, we will continue to Nyalam. Meals and accommodation in a guesthouse.
Day 04: Rest in Nyalam (B/L/D)
Rest day for proper acclimatization.We can visit the NyalamPelgye Ling temple associated with the great Milarepa, the Tibetan yogi. Overnight in guesthouse.
Day 05: Nyalam-Pelku-Tso -Saga (B/L/D)
Altitude 13,973 ft, distance 157 miles / about 6 hours drive
Today we drive over two high passes and halfway we arrive at Pelkutsolake for lunch. Lablung La (5030m/16,498ft) offers spectacular views of Mt. Sishapangma (8021m/26,309ft), Gaurishanker and many other peaks, all of which are dwarfed by the Tibetan plateau. You will cross the Bramhaputra River just before Saga. Overnight in tents at Saga.
Day 06: Saga-Zhongba-Paryang (B/L/D)
Altitude 14,891 ft, distance: 160 miles/about 8hrs drive
It is at Saga where we connect with the main road from Lhasa . We continue across the vast dry plains to the small Tibetan town of Zhongba and drive further to Paryang for an overnight stay. Overnight in tents.
Day 07: Paryang-Lake Manasarovara (B/L/D)
Altitude 14,957 ft, distance 157 miles about 8hrs drive
Today's drive involves crossing several rivers but has some of the most panoramic scenery. The crews will set your camp by the sacred Manasarovar Lake -which according to Hindu mythology was formed in the mind of Brahma-the creator of the world. Today you will have the first Darshan (view) of holy Mt. Kailash from Horqu. Overnight in tents.
Day 08: Halt at Lake Manasarovara
Stop at Manasarovara Lake for a holy dip, puja and other ritual performance. You can take leisurely walk or excursion along the lakeside. Overnight camp.
Day 09: Lake Manasarovara-Darchen (B/L/D)
Altitude 15,285 ft, distance 20miles/about 2 hrs drive.
It's a short drive of about 2 hours to Darchen. After lunch, you may want to prepare yourself for the three days trekking ahead. Crews will be organizing pack animals (yaks), gear and supplies for the trek. Overnight in guesthouse.
Day 10: Darchen-Dira Phuk Gompa (B/L/D)
Altitude 16,102 ft, about 6 hrs trek
Tarboche, marked by Tibetan flags is the starting point for kora and it is the site for Tibet's most important annual Saga Dawa festival. Walk up the Lha Chu Valley through beautiful green meadows and streams with Mt Kailash towering above us. We follow the river, which enters a narrow canyon with high, steep cliffs and spectacular waterfalls. Continuing up the valley, the north face of Kailash comes into view before we reach the 13th century monastery at Dira-phuk. Overnight in camp.
Day 11: Drira Phuk Monastery-Zuthul-Phuk (B/L/D)
Altitude 15,711 ft., about 7 hrs trek
Bid farewell to Lha Chu Valley and prepare to fight the toughest part of the kora. We enter the Drolma Chu Valley , heading up towards a high pass, the Drolma La [5,630m/18,466 ft] that is marked Tibetan prayer flags. The rest of the day's walk is mostly downhill and flat land. On descent, we pass by one of the highest lakes in the world, ThukpeDzingbu Lake (GauriKunda), known as the Lake of Compassion. The Zuthulphuk monastery is built at the site of a famous cave, which is believed to have been created as a result of contest between Milareppa (Buddhist Yogi) and NaroBonchung (Bon Saint). Overnight in camp.
Day 12: Trek to Darchen (B/L/D)
Altitude 4,560m/14,956 ft, about 3 hrs trek.
The final day of the kora is rather short and easier. It takes merely 2 ½ to 3 hours that involves crossing of several streams and follows an impressive gorge from where we can look back for fabulous views. Overnight in guesthouse.
Day 13-14: Darchen to Paryang to Saga (B/L/D)
Retrace your way back to Paryang to Saga. Overnight Camp
Day 15-16: Saga to Kathamndu.(B/L)
If you are extending your trip to Lhasa, you will split with crews at Saga and head eastwards. Otherwise, retraceour drive to Kathmandu via a stop in Nyalam.
Day 17: Departure (B)
Transfer to airport for international flight back home.
Day 15 Saga to Lhatse (B)
Altitude 13,169 ft, distance 188 miles about 7 hrs.
We take a left turn at Saga, skirt around a lake and pass through a series of valleys before you reach Lhatse. Overnight in guesthouse
Day 16: Lhatse to Shigatse (B)
Altitude 12,792ft, distance 72 miles and driving hours 4 hrs.
Today, we drive to Shigatse-the second largest city of Tibet . This is where the famous Tashilunbo Monastery, the principal seat of Panchen Lama is situated. Panchen Lama holds the second highest position after Dalai Lama in the Gelugpa sect of Tibetan Buddhism. Overnight in Hotel Shigatse or Hotel Manasarovara (***star)
Day 17: Shigatse to Gyantse (B)
Altitude 12,841 ft, distance 54 miles and about 2 hrs drive.
In the morning, we visit the Tashilhunbo Monastery-the seat of Panchen Lama, one of the largest functioning monasteries of Tibet , before driving 90km to Gyantse. After refreshments in the hotel, visit the PelkorChode Monastery and the GyantseKumbum-the large gold-domed stupa that houses an impressive array of Tibetan Buddhist murals. Overnight in Hotel Gyantse (***)
Day 18: Gyantse-Lhasa (B)
Altitude 11,858 ft, distance, 165 miles about 6 hours drive
Today's drive is one of the most spectacular ones and involves crossing the high pass of Karo La [5045m/16,548 ft]. We stop for lunch in Nangkartse- a small, developing town, just before the YamdrokTso Lake. From here, the road follows the bank of the lake for about 60km/38miles.We bid farewell to the beautiful lake from Kamba La [4794m/15,700ft] and at the same time we are greeted by the first view of Lhasa Valley. Hotel: Lhasa Hotel**** (Former Holiday Inn)
Day 19-20: Lhasa (B)
We spend these two days visiting several of Lhasa 's many monasteries-such as Sera and Sera, Potala Palace -the seat of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, NorbuLingkha Palace -the summer palace of the Dalai Lama, Jorkhang Temple and walk through Barkhor street . Hotel: Lhasa Hotel**** (Former Holiday Inn)
Day 21: Departure (B)
Flight to Kathmandu or Chengdu or Beijing or next destination.
- Trip Duration: 14 Days
- Difficulty Level: West Tibet and Mt.Kailash
- Accomodation: Tented Camping
- Activities: 4WD Adventure, Hotspring bath in Chiu Gompa, Lake Manasarovara 3 days strenuous trek
- Trip Starts In: Kathmandu
- Trip Finishes In: Kathmandu
- Best Time for Travel: May to October
Camping gears include two person tents, dinning tent, dinning tables and chairs, toilet tent, kitchen tent etc.
Nepalese crews for camping and kitchen arrangement
3 meals a day on camping part.
All transfers by 4 WD Toyota Landcruiser jeep and a support vehicle for gears and supplies.
All necessary permits and entrance fees.
Yak and Yak driver for luggage and gears for 3 days circuit trek.
English speaking Tibetan guide and drivers
First aid kit.
Pressure chamber bag incase of altitude sickness
Expenses of personal nature like drinks, tip, laundry etc.
Travel health, personal accident and trip cancellation insurance.
Any expenses caused due to inclement weather or unforeseen events like flight delay, cancellation, road blockade by landslide etc
3 days circumambulation trek
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