In Nepal we will tour Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur for three days. This part of the pilgrimage will have a different approach to sightseeing. Whenever possible, the group will be left to freely explore the sites, especially spiritual sites such as temples or monasteries.
In Tibet, this journey covers Lhasa's main spiritual sites: Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor street, Drepung and Sera monastery with Gyantse Kumbum and Shigatse Tashi Lhunpho monastery. We will admire special natural sceneries such as the sacred lake Yamdrok tso and Karo glacier with a stunning view of Mt. Everest. Namtso Lake is the second largest alpine saline lake in Tibet and it is a special holy site for Buddhists.
Day 1: Arrive in Kathmandu
Day 2: Full Day Kathmandu
Day 3: Patan & Bhaktapur
Day 4: Flight Kathmandu to Lhasa
Day 5: Lhasa Tour - Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street
Day 6: Lhasa Tour - Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery
Day 7: Lhasa to Shigatse via Gyantse
Day 9: Everest Base Camp and return to Shigatse
Day 10: Shigatse to Lhasa
Day 11: Lhasa to Namtso Lake
Day 12: Namtso Lake to Gyantse
Day 13: Flight Lhasa to Kathmandu
Day 1: Home - Kathmandu [Dinner included)
Arrival in Kathmandu. Our local representative will pick us up at the airport. Transfer to the hotel (20-30 minutes ride). Free time to walk in Thamel with your tour leader. Thamel is the tourist district of Kathmandu and bustles with activity into the late evening. It is 10-minute walking distance from the center of Kathmandu,The Kathmandu Valley contains three royal cities - Kathmandu; Patan and Bhaktapur. Kirtipur and Thimi are two other smaller municipalities. Dinner and overnight at the hotel.
Day 2: Full Day Kathmandu [B&D]
We have the possibility for a morning sitting together. An additional cost for renting a room may be required if the group decide to sit together each morning. Another option is we can sit in one of our rooms. This particular pilgrimage will have a different approach to sightseeing. Whenever possible, the group will be left to freely explore the sites, especially spiritual sites such as temples or monasteries. This will allow time to take in impressions without the interference of too much information given by the guides. This type of visit may not be possible in some of the sites in Tibet.
After breakfast major visits for the day: Sightseeing of Pashupatinath Temple - the most sacred of the Hindu temples in Nepal dedicated to Lord Shiva, first established in the 5th century. The holiest Hindu pilgrimage place in Nepal, Pashupatinath has received the attention of worshippers for at least fifteen hundred years. Time for personal sitting.
We move to Boudha Nath Temple - Boudhanath Stupa (or Bodnath Stupa) is the largest stupa in Nepal and lies a further 2 km north from Pashupatinath Temple. It is one of the sacred Tibetan Buddhist temples outside Tibet. We will try to arrange a meeting with one of the local lamas. Free time. Lunch not included. We continue the visit with Swayambhunath temple - the oldest Buddhist shrine, known as the 'monkey temple' because of the large tribe of roving monkeys who guard the temple.
Possibility to schedule daily exchanges. Dinner included. Overnight at the hotel.
Day 3: Patan & Bhaktapur [B&D]
Possible morning sitting followed by breakfast and a day of visits: Bhaktapur Durbar Square and Patan, the city full of Hindu temples and Buddhist monuments. Free time to mediate at these sites or to visit Thamel. Dinner included. Overnight in hotel.
This journey covers Lhasa's main spiritual sites: Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor street, Drepung and Sera monastery with Gyantse Kumbum and Shigatse Tashi Lhunpho monastery. We will admire special natural sceneries such as the sacred lake Yamdrok tso and Karo glacier with a stunning view of Mt. Everest. Namtso Lake is the second largest alpine saline lake in Tibet and it is a special holy site for Buddhists. It’s surrealistic beauty and charge of energy makes this place a special site to meditate.
Day 4: Flight Kathmandu-Lhasa (Altitude 3650m) [B&D]
After breakfast drive to airport for our flight to Lhasa. On arrival our local representative will greet us and pick us up. Free time to acclimatize or walk around the Potala square. Dinner and overnight in Lhasa.
Day 5: Lhasa Tour - Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street [B&D]
Today we visit the Potala Palace, the winter palace of the Dalai Lama. It has been used since the 7th Century by the 33 great kings of Tibet. The most valuable collections are the gilded burial stupas of past Dalai Lamas and meditation Cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet. After lunch (not included) we head to Jokhang temple, one of the most important temples in Tibet hosting the statue of Buddha Sakyamuni at the age of twelve, the single most venerated object in Tibetan Buddhism. Free time to mediate in the temple or to walk around Barkhor street. Dinner and overnight in Lhasa.
Day 6: Lhasa Tour - Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery [B&D]
Today we visit Drepung monastery which was one of the “three great” Gelug monasteries of Tibet along with Sera Monastery, our visit for the afternoon. Here the highlight is the Monk’s debate that takes place around 3 - 5 in the afternoon. Free time for personal sitting. Dinner and overnight in Lhasa.
Day 7: Lhasa (3650m) to Shigatse via Gyantse (3900m) [B&D]
Today we drive from Lhasa to Gyantse. On the way we have a glimpse of Yamdrok Lake and the Holy Mount Nyenchen Khangsar, (7191m). Gyantse was historically Tibet's third largest city (after Lhasa and Shigatse). In Gyantse, we will visit the famous Pelkor Monastery and Gyantse Kumbum. We continue towards Shigatse, the second largest city in Tibet. In Shigatse, we’ll visit Tashilunpo Monastery, the seat of Tibet's second highest incarnation, the Panchen Lama. Dinner and overnight in Shigatse.
Day 8: Shigatse (3900m) to Everest Base Camp (5200m) [B&D]
We leave Shigatse after getting the travel permit for Everest Base Camp, and then drive to Lhatse, a small Tibetan town. Our drive continues towards Rongbuk monastery. On the way we pass one of the highest passes in Tibet, Pang la pass, height 5050m. From that pass we will view the five highest peaks in the world. Stay for dinner and overnight in tent or at Rongbuk monastery guest house.
Day 9: Everest Base Camp (5200m) and return to Shigatse (3900m)[B&D]
In the morning, we will see the sunrise appearing on the top of Mt Everest. Possible trek from our tent to Mt. Everest Base camp 4/km. After visiting base camp, we move to Rongphu Monastery of the Nyingma sect, the highest monastery in the world at 5000m. We then drive back to Shigatse for dinner and overnight.
Day 10: Shigatse (3900m) to Lhasa (3650m) [B&D]
Very early wakeup call and drive back to Lhasa on the Friendship Highway. The distance is almost 280km and the journey time around 6 hours. Rest of the day is free. Dinner and overnight in Lhasa
Day 11: Lhasa to Namtso Lake (250km, 5 hours) [B&D]
In the morning, drive from Lhasa to Lake Namtso. On the way we will see lots of nomad’s tents with grazing yak and sheep. Namtso Lake is one of the four holy lakes of Tibet. Here we have the possibility to trek around the lake and Tashi Island, or to meditate by the shore or on one of the nearby hills. Dinner and overnight in Namtso Guest House. The sky from this site is simply amazing.
Day 12: Namtso Lake to Gyantse (345km, 6/7 hours ) [B&D]
Enjoy the clear morning at the lake shore. We can trek along the lake shore to Tashi Dor Island to explore the meditation caves. At the end, drive to Tsedang. Free time for a walk around the main spiritual sites of the city or simply rest. Dinner and overnight in Tsedang.
Day 13: Depart from Lhasa Gongar Airport [B] to Kathmandu
The guide will transfer you to the airport and help you board. This flight will be in the morning. You can continue your flight home or stay on in Nepal if you wish for an additional cost.
Please inquire if interested in this itinerary for your group.
Kathmandu – Hotel Arts *** www.hotelartskathmandu.com or similar.
Lhasa – Doodh Gu Hotel *** or similar
Shigatse – Hotel Gesar *** or similar
Shegar – Hotel Everest **
Gyantse – Hotel Gyantse *** or similar
Namtso Lake – angbingguan Hotel guest house
Rombuk monastery guest house or tent in Mt. Everest base camp
Tsedang – Hotel Tsedang ***
A pilgrim is considered enrolled once he /she has paid the deposit and sent the registration form in. Pilgrims are required to sign a waiver and give a copy to the Journeys to the East tour leader at the first meeting in Kathmandu. People without a signed waiver will not be able to join the pilgrimage.
Participants must purchase medical insurance that includes emergency medical repatriation. Policy number and details must be provided to the Journeys to the East tour leader at the first meeting with the group in Kathmandu. Pilgrims without a medical insurance will not be able to join the pilgrimage. Travel insurance is highly recommended to allow a substantial refund policy in case of trip cancellation by the pilgrim.