Shoton Festival Tour
9 Days/8 Nights
The Shoton Festival, also known as the Yoghurt Festival, begins on the 30th day of the sixth Tibetan month. The origin of the festival started in the 17th century when pilgrims served yoghurt to the monks who stopped for their summer retreat. Years later, Tibetan opera performances were added to the event to amuse monks in monasteries. During the festival, giant Thangkas of the Buddha are unveiled in the Drepung Monastery while Tibetan opera troupes perform at Norbulingka. Additionally, the Shoton Festival Tour covers the highlights of Tsetang, Lhasa, Gyantse and Shigatse.
Day 01 : Flight to Gonkar Airport of Lhasa and transfer to Tsedang (3,500m/11,667ft)
Flight to Lhasa’sGonkar airport.Upon arrival, you will be met and greeted by the Tibetan guide and drive to Tsetang (87km/58miles, 2 hrs)- the capital of the Shannan Prefecture of the Tibet Autonomous Region. Check in to hotel and take a rest for acclimatization.
Day 02 : Tsetang-Lhasa (Alt. 3,658m/12,193ft, 183km/122miles, 4 hrs) (B/D)
Morning visit to the Yumbulakhang Palace and theTrandduk temple. In the afternoon, drive to Lhasa; visiting the Samye Monastery en route. Check in to hotel and take a rest for the remainder of the day.
Day 03: Shoton Festival celebration in Drepung Monastery and Lhasa sightseeing (B).
Drive early morning to Drepung Monastery and enjoy the festival. A giant Buddha Thangka will be displayed amidst an exciting atmosphere. Enjoy the festival activities and later drive to the old Tibetan part of Lhasa and visit the TheJokhang Temple and Bakhor Street.
Day 04: Shoton Festival Celebration in Norbulingkha Palace and Lhasa sightseeing (B)
Attend the Shoton festival in Norbulingkha Palace and later take a sightseeing tour of the Potala Palace and Sera Monastery.
Day 05: Yangpacheng Hot Spring and Namtso Lake Excursion. (B)
Early morning drive to Yangpacheng Hot Spring which is 58 miles north from Lhasa. Enjoy the landscape of the Qiang grasslands and the NyachengTangula Snow Mountain Range. Continue driving to Namtso (98 miles), literally a “heavenly lake” The lake is notable for several reasons: it is the largest lake in Tibet, the second largest salt lake in China, as well as the highest lake in the world (15,573 ft).
Day 06: Lhasa-Gyantse . (13467ft, 160miles, 6 ½ hrs) (B)
Today, you will set out along the Friendship Highway, heading westwards to Gyantse. You will follow the bank of YamdrokTso for more than 40 miles and motoring over two high passes, the Kamba La (15,700ft) and the Laro La (16, 500ft)
Day 07: Gyantse-Shigatse (12,785ft, 57miles, 2 ½ hrs) (B )
After breakfast, you will visit the PelkorChodeand Kumbum Monastery which are the highlights of Gyantse. Drive to Shigatse where you will visit the famous Tashilunbo Monastery-the principal seat of Panchen Lama-the second most venerated religious leader of Tibet. Shigatse Hotel***
Day 08: Shigatse-Lhasa (186miles, 7 hrs) (B)
Drive to Lhasa via the new road that runs parallel to the YarlungTsambo River. The road is rough and improvementconstruction is ongoing. If time permits, you will stop by the Yundrungling Monastery in Tradruk. Check in to hotel and take a rest for the day.
Shangbala or Xiongbala Hotel***
Day 09: Lhasa-Departure (B)
Transfer to Gonkar airport (60 miles, 2 ½ hrs) and catch your flight to next destination.
- Trip Duration: 9 Days
- Difficulty Level: Festival Tours of Tibet
- Accomodation: Hotels
- Activities: Sightseeing, 4WD Adventure, Monastery Visits, Short Hikes
- Trip Starts In: Lhasa
- Trip Finishes In: Lhasa
- Best Time for Travel: August-September
All transfers and sightseeing by a private air conditioned car or coach
Sightseeing admission fees
English speaking Tour Guide
Tibet Travel Permit
Samye monastery-the first Buddhist Monastery.
Dalai Lamas's Potala and Norbulingkha Palaces, Drepung -the largest and most powerful of the Gelug monasteries, Sera-one of the largest monasteries of Tibet, ancient Jorkhang Temple and Barkhor Street in old Tibetan quarter of Lhasa.
Spectacular drive over Kamba La (15,700ft) and Karo La (16,500 ft) to Gyantse.
Yamdrok Tso-the turquoise green water lake.
Kumbum Stupa and Pelkore Chode Monastery in Gyantse.
Shalu Monastery and Tashilunbo Monastery at Shigatse.
Barren landscapes and friendliest Tibetan people.
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