“full of thrills and excitement throughout this trip, from traditional villages, green and arid hills, amazing barren landscapes and high mountains, traveling on world’s largest and highest plateau, visiting traditional Tibetan villages, cities, monasteries enrich with old culture, customs and tour of famous and magnificent Potala Palace complex, and visit of world’s largest salt lakes are the main attraction and highlights of this fabled Lhasa city tour”
Trexmount Ventures welcomes you to join in our remarkable and fascinating Tour of Monasteries & Lakes in Tibet, and around world highest capital, where you can experience interesting cultural tour of a life time, with views of Mt. Chomolungma (Everest), Makalu and several other well-known peaks as the plane flies over world’s highest and largest plateau of Tibet, during an hour scenic panoramic flight in and out of Lhasa.
Tour of Monasteries & Lakes with Trexmount Ventures, leads to Tibet’s largest and main religious and cultural centre, travel starts with an interesting flight over high Himalayan mountains above Tibetan plateau, on reaching Lhasa airport which is called Gongar International Airport, received by our Tibetan counter agent guide and driver, with an hour drive to Lhasa at 3,660 meters high with views of Potala palace as the drive enters the city area.
Lhasa at present a mixture of old and modern city, our hotels are located in the old part of Lhasa around Barkor market square, the hub of Lhasa where you can observe the old culture, Buddhist pilgrims, and religious way of life with impressive customs of Tibetans from various parts of Tibet.
In Lhasa with four nights’ ample time visiting famous old interesting monasteries, monuments and market place including magnificent Potala Palace which stands high majestically on top of red hill, overlooking the beautiful Kyuichi valley where Lhasa city located.
Morning visiting old Drefung monastery the largest in Tibet, Sera monastery to observe young monks in debate which is interesting to watch, ancient Jorkang Temple in the middle of Barkhor square which is an earliest temple built by king Songsen Gompa in early 6th century, time permitting visit summer palace of Dalai Lama at Norbu Linka with nice immaculate gardens.
In Lhasa enjoying the tour with Tibetans food and lifestyle, drive leads towards Ganden huge monastery complex, which was built around early 11th century by Tsong Khapa the founder of Gelugpa sect of Buddhism, located 45 k.m. east of Lhasa on a high hill with great views of surrounding area, after an interesting visit here driving back to Lhasa through traditional farm villages with Yak grazing around green pasture.
From Ganden driving North East towards Nam Tsho lakes via the highest pass of this journey at Largen-La 5,180 m, Nam Tsho one of the largest salt lake in Tibet and probably in the world, from here driving towards Lhasa and tour continues with a visit of old Samye monastery of Tibet.
Samye Monastery, first monastery established in Tibet, located on the north bank of Yarlung Tsangpo river, south east of Lhasa. It was constructed by Padmasambhava (Guru Ringboche) and Santarakshita between A.D. 763 and 775 in the reign of King Dristen Detsen, and the visit of south east Tsedang town, tour of ancient monastery and Yambu lagang, the palace of Tibet’s first king and the oldest building in Tibet.
After Tsedang journey towards Gyantse and Shigatse through scenic high passes of over 5,000 meters on Lhasa / Kathmandu highway with picturesque views of Tibetan plateau with snow capped peaks, then heading downhill towards beautiful turquoise Yamdrok Tsho (Lake) and then over Karo-la pass at 5,010 meters high pass with awesome views of Nzongkhangsa peak which is over 7,000 meters high, where the ice fall and glacier flows just next to the roadside, the drive leads past small farm villages and nomads area with Yaks and sheep grazing over yonder of green pasture fields, as the drive reach at Gyantse city a busy bustling place, here tour of famous terracotta stupa and the huge fort (Dzong).
Next morning drive leads to Tibet’s 2nd largest city after Lhasa, here tour of magnificent Tashilumpo monastery seat of his holiness Panchen Lamas and visiting the local market observing the simple and impressive daily life of Tibetans.
After a wonderful journey around best part of Tibet heading back to Lhasa for the flight back to Kathmandu with great service of Trexmount Ventures and memorable moment in Tibet with tour of Monasteries & Emerald Lakes
After the flight and getting refreshed in respective hotels, a rendezvous in Kathmandu with other members for trip orientation, where our guide / leader will inform and brief regarding the journey to Tibet, hotels, do and don’ts with evening group dinner.
Morning after breakfast as time set for the sightseeing tour, our city guide will lead you for few hours in our fascinating heritage and cultural tour around places of interest, tour of holy Pashupatinath temple, Bouddhanath (Little Tibet), Swayambhunath (Monkey Temple) & monasteries, old historical Palaces, courtyard; and then back to hotel after the wonderful tour, afternoon free for individual activities and preparation for journey to Tibet.
Morning after breakfast depart from the hotel to Kathmandu International airport for the flight to Lhasa city, a scenic flight with panoramic views of high Himalayas including the soaring Mt. Everest. On reaching at Gongar airport near Lhasa our Tibetan guide and driver, from our counterpart agent in Tibet receives you for a short drive of an hour to reach the main Lhasa city.
Lhasa city a mixture of old and new, our hotels situated in the old parts of east Lhasa around Barkor market square, which is the hub of Lhasa, where one can observe the Tibetans from all part of Tibet with their colorful costumes and deep root in Tibetan Buddhism.
Here in Lhasa with two days of interesting tour, the visit around monastery Drefung monastery, which is one of the largest and oldest monastic complex, in olden days over 7,000 monks, priest used to reside, at present about 200 -300 monks, Dalai Lama used to reside here, before Potala Palace was built.
Drefung means heap of rice, as this building washed with white lime paints perched on a hill top above Lhasa or Kyuchi valley.
Afternoon visit Sera Monastery, one of the most important and old monastery of Tibet as well a school for Tibetan Buddhism, interesting to watch young monks in heavy debate, from here visit Jorkhang Temple is another interesting place as it boasts a lot of historic importance and tales of old days. Conclude the day tour by visiting Bharkor Bazaar.
Next morning tour of magnificent Potala Palace, originally built during 640 A.D, the 13 storied palace stands at 117.19m high with 1000 rooms, visitors are allowed only 10 -12 main and important rooms and shrines. Afternoon visit Norbu Linka a summer palace of most resent Dalai Lamas, which is quite modern with immaculate garden, after an enjoyable time afternoon free at leisure for last minute shopping souvenirs.
Morning departure for Ganden, drive leads towards east from Lhasa about 45 k.m. along the road that following the south bank of the Kyi Chu to Medro Gongkar, drive leads east past Tibet University, across the Lhasa east bridge, on the main Tibet-Sichuan highway, drive leads past traditional and typical farm villages as this short journey reach at Ganden Valley. Here visit Ganden, which is the foremost monastery of the Gelugpa (Yellow Hat) sect. Of all the Great Six monasteries (Ganden, Sera, Drepung,Tashilumpo, Labrang, Kumbum) of the Yellow Sect, none suffered as disastrously as Ganden, the ruins here from Cultural Revolution sine last 3-4 years is being reconstructed back to its original shape, a Herculean efforts have gone into rebuilding. Before the ruins, over 2,000 monks lived here; now there are hardly 300 monks lives and take care of this monastic complex.
From here drive leads towards North to Nam Tsho Lake via highest point of this trip at 5,180 m on top of Largen-La with super vista of surround hills and valley, an opportunity to observe Tibet’s rural farm and village life with Yaks grazing. After the pass reaching at Namtso, which is north of Lagan-la, looking like a deep blue iceberg an impressive huge body of water, and the town of Nam Tsho Qu is on the plains to the right east of the lake. The caravan route skirts this end of the lake, entering low hills further across the northern plateau. There are two way to approach Tashiy Dorje, either options take about the same amount of time. Atg Tashiy Dorje which is flat, arid at the shore of lake Namtsho, next morning one can do the holy circuit around the Tashiy Dorje, Chhungchhung which is about two hour lakeside walk under the sculpted limestone cliffs. The climb to the summit 4,720m takes less than 30 minutes and is best approached from the east side near the mani wall. Piles of carved prayer stones decorate the summit and the views outstanding in all directions. Nam-Tsho’s 113 k.m length can now be appreciated, although the far end is still lost from sight. Nam Tsho is considered a salt lake. After a wonderful time drive back to Lhasa, with last night in this Tibetan capital, afternoon free at leisure for individual activities.
With leisure morning and breakfast drive back to Lhasa for next part of this wonderful trip leading towards southern Tibet area, drive takes about more than 5-6 hours, depending upon the road conditions, over the past years the highway has been much improved, on reaching Lhasa free at leisure for individual activities.
Depart Lhasa after breakfast for another scenic and interesting journey, drive leads past Gongor / Lhasa airport driving east and just on route Tsedang highway, our route leads over the Brahmaputra River / Yarlung Tsangpo which flows from Mt. Kailash far south west Tibet, using a ferry to get across the other banks of the river and then transfer in whatever vehicles available for a short drive to Samye Gompa monastic area. Samye Monastery, first monastery established in Tibet, located north bank of Yarlung Tsangpo river, south east of Lhasa. It was constructed by Padmasambhava (Guru Ringboche) and Santarakshita around 763 and 775 AD in the reign of King Dristen Detsen. This huge monastery was modeled like university of Odantapuri in India and was made on a plan representing the mount Sumeru (Rirab) which is regarded axis of universe. The four pagodas in white, blue, green and red represents the four worlds in the north, south, east and west of the universe. Smaller temples representing island in between the world, the main temple is dedicated to Avalokiteshvara (Chenresi), according to legend, Padmasambhava magically compelled Tibetan demons to collect stones and wood each night to built by men during day. This famous monastery was the site of a major Buddhist council called “Council of Samye’ held in 792-794 AD, two great teachers, from India and China participated in the debate.
India was represented by Kamlasila and China by Hashang.
After a tour of Samye, heading across the river for a short drive to Tsedang town and check into a nice hotel, afternoon a short tour of ancient monastery and Yambu lagang, the palace of Tibet’s first king and the oldest building in Tibet, Tsedang was the earliest kingdom of Tibet before 6-7th Century AD.
Morning departure for Gyantse, drive leads towards west of Tsedang and then south following Bhramaputra River (Yalung Tsangpo), then heading over Khamba-la pass at 4,795 meters high with awesome panorama of Tibetan plateau with snow capped peaks and turquoise Yamdrok Tsho (lake), heading downhill towards the turquoise lake to reach another pass after Nakartse town, drive leads on the vast Tibetan plateau crossing over Karo- La Pass 5,010m, with stunning views of Nzongkhansa peak which is over 7,000 meters and icefall, glacier can be seen just next to the road side, around here settlement of Drokpa (nomads) with Yaks grazing around the grassy meadow, as the ride continues reaching at Gynatse city, check into a nice hotels, afternoon tour of Khumbum terracotta stupa and its huge Dzong (Fort).
Today one of the shortest drive of this trip with just about 3 hours drive to Tibet’s 2nd biggest city of Shigatse, drive leads south west through farm villages and small towns and with first views of famous and beautiful Tashilumpo monastic complex and its golden roof top. On reaching in the midst of Shigatse city check into a nice hotels where our guide will take you for a tour of Shigatse, honored by famous Tashilumpo Monastery; the seat of Panchen Lama. The most interesting places are Tashilumpo monastic complex and the ruined fortress which dominates the city’s skyline. A high wall surrounds the red and gold buildings which make up the Tashilumpo Monastery. The route around the wall circumambulates the monastery which also includes small shrines, significant rock inscriptions and many prayer wheels. A visit to the market concludes our stay at Shigatse.
Morning drive leads back to Lhasa for the flight to Kathmandu, after a wonderful stop in Shigatse, today our drive leads on a local route which is much shorter than the other way we came in after Gyantse.After pleasant drive brings reaching in Lhasa, after following the great Yarlung Tsangpo (Brahmaputra River) most of the way till the drive joins close to Gongor airport to Lhasa, afternoon enjoy the last day in Lhasa and in Tibet.
After breakfast, early morning we drive for an hour to Gongar (Lhasa) Airport, on the newly built highway leading through few long tunnels, on reaching at Gongor airport terminal, farewell to our ever cheerful Tibetan guide and drivers and then make way for a scenic flight to Kathmandu with panoramic views of high Himalayas including the soaring Mt. Everest. Upon arrival our staff will transfer you to respective hotels, with afternoon free for individual activities.
Today, last day in Nepal with great memories of Tour of Monasteries & Lakes with Trexmount Ventures with amazing experience transfer to Tribhuvan International airport for final departure towards homeward bound or to next port of call.