Day 01: Arrival to Lhasa and transfer to the hotel
You arrive Lhasa either by international flight services or train services from the countries connected with Tibet via roadways. As soon as you arrive at the Lhasa Gonggar Airport, our guide welcomes and takes you towards the hotel. From the international airport, it takes just about an hour to drive to the hotel for the accommodation. However, if you travel on a train, you arrive the Lhasa Train Station built between the Lhasa River and the Potala Palace. After you check-in to the hotel, you can take a rest throughout the day for acclimatization in the Tibetan Province. In the evening, you can take a short stroll around the top tourist attractions of the city to become familiar with the climate. Overnight stay at a guest house by enjoying the continental cuisines of your choice and appetite.
Day 02: Lhasa Sightseeing Tour
Lhasa Sightseeing Tour is important for acclimatization on one hand and explore the socio-cultural and religious milestones on the other. Today after having breakfast, you begin the journey to explore the culturally important sites here. As there are many significant cultural heritage sites in Lhasa “the Sacred City of Lamaism” to attract thousands of international tourists every year. Therefore, the tour guide takes you around Potala Palace and Norbulingka Palace to show you their artistic wonders and historical importance.
The most remarkable socio-cultural sites of Tibetan Autonomous Province is Potala Palace, the summer palace of the Dalai Lama from 1649 to 1959. This historical and cultural landmark is located between Deprung Monastery and Sera Monastery; two of the Gulung university monasteries. Enlisted in the UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 1994, this palace is thirteen-storey having 1,000 rooms, 10,000 shrines and 200,000 idols. It has been run as a museum to protect the important paintings, carvings, art and artefacts of the Tibetan Buddhist culture and tradition.
Norbulingka Palace situated at the height of 3,650m used to be the summer palace of the Dalai Lama. It is famous for the highest, largest and the most protected ancient manmade horitcultural garden in the world. The palace houses around 30,000 culturally important relics of the ancient Tibetan history that it is a growing tourist destination of Tibet.
Towards the end of the day, you can go to visit the Drebung Monastery, once the largest monastery in the world. Situated behind the mountain edge and far away from the urban area, this monastery is the home for over 10,000 nuns and monks. Although the monastery dates back to 1,300 or 1,400 years old, most part of this monastery are still fit and fine conserving their characteristics.
Day 03: Lhasa Excursion
You begin the Lhasa excursion by visiting Sera Monastery which lies just 5 kilometres northwards from Lhasa. A live example of the Tibetan Buddhist architectural style, Sera Monastery once used to house for more than 5,000 monks. A myth shows its direct connection with the Sherpa people, the Mountain Summiteers, of the Eastern Himalayas of Nepal. According to this myth, the Sherpas are the migrants from Sera Monastery region that they in the end became the Sherpas. The word ‘Sherpa’ is combination of two words: ‘Ser’ meaning the ‘worshipper of Sera Monastery’ and ‘Pa’ the ‘community or group’.
Afterwards, you continue the Lhasa day tour towards Jokhang Monastery, another popular Tibetan pilgrimage site visited by thousands of visitors annually. highlighted with prayer wheels, reclining deer and golden sutra streamers, this shrine is located at the center of the Old Lhasa You can join the large number of worshippers who do the Kora (the sacred circumambulation) to feel peace of mind. It is regarded as a historical site as well because it houses the most precious religious relic of the entire Tibet. The golden Shakyamuni Buddha idol gifted to the Chinese Princess Wen Chen marrying with the Tibetan King Songsten Gompo is the main attraction.
Around the end of the day, you take a short visit around Bharkhor Market, the largest marketplace of the entire Lhasa. The Tibetans gather into the market to buy their every day necessities every now and then. So, Bharkhor Market remains always live with the hustling and bustling people and their movements in and out of the junction. You can also get some typical Buddha relics or other souvenirs to utilize the time and assimilate the crowd! Finally, you return to the hotel and take rest for the day.
Day 04: Drive to Shigatse
Some of the must-experience landmarks are Tashilunpo Monastery, Shalu Monastery, Khumbum Stupa and Phalkot Monastery that are regarded as the holy shrines. Early in the morning, you go to visit Tashi Lunpo Monastery, the home of the Panchan Lama to observe the crowd of the Tibetan Buddhist followers. This monastery was founded by Gedun Drub, the disciple of the famous philosopher Je Tsongkhapa in 1447 AD. You can see hundreds of pilgrims taking circumambulation the monastery on the linkhor out of the walls for religious purpose.
Next important cultural and historical site to explore is Shalu Monastery which lies about 22 km south of Shigatse. Shalu Monastery was constructed in 1040 AD, which is famous for its artistic pattern and mural carvings reflecting Buddhist culture and tradition. This 700 years old Buddhist shrines has four treassures: a sutra board, a brass urn, a stone basin and a stone tablet. Idols of Shakyamuni Buddha and his disciples and mural paintings covering the walls are worth observing in the monastery.
Moving ahead towards Shigatse, you come to see Gyantse Dzong that is one of the most important historical landmarks preserved well. Gyantse Dzong was constructed in 1390 AD to protect the Tsangpo Valley and Lhasa from invasion of the southern enemies. The historically important fortress was surrounded by a 3-km long wall from all sides. Although once destroyed, now it is being reconstructed and a small museum is built to promote Tibetan tourism.
Day 05: Drive to Everest Tent Camp
Today, you start the journey towards one of the prime attractions of Lhasa Everest Tent Camp Tour after having breakfast. The 350-kilometer road journey from Shigatse to Everest region takes nearly 10 hours along with the checkpoints on the way. En route you drive past by Lhatse, a small town having hotels and lodges to provide the basic services to the tourists. You cross Tsola Pass (4,600m) and Gyatsola Pass (5,248m) to enter Mt. Everest National Nature Reserve, one of the largest protected areas in China. You witness the picturesque vistas of the Giant Mountains from Gawula Pass (5,198,) while moving further along the zigzag Friendship Highway.
Enjoying the distant mountain views and wonderful landscapes, you reach Rongbuk Monastery which is around eight km downwards from the Tent Camp, in the afternoon. After that, you drive along the Pangla Pass (5,050m) to reach Everest Tent Camp which, an optional summer stopover. However, in winter the tourists come down to Rongbuk Monastery for the night station as the snow-level is quite higher in the tent camp.
Everest Tent Camp is situated at the elevation of 5,000m and consists of many large-sized tents made of yak fur. Every tent contains dorm beds, abundant blankets (not often washed!) and a stove in the middle for the use of the Everest trekkers. You can enjoy the eye-catching panorama of three eight-thousanders: Everest, Lhotse, Cho Oyu including Mt. Shishapangma between Tibet and Nepal. Within one-kilometre sphere of the Tent Camp, you can find several meditation caves which are used for recreational tour by monks and nuns. Among these, Guru Rinpoche Cave is the most important and popular as it is believed that Padma Sambhava completed his penance in this cave. You can spend the time by relaxing and meditating with the silent nuns and monk for the peace of mind!
Day 06: Drive Back to Shigatse
As soon as you get up, you can enjoy the sunrise view of the Everest from Rongbuk Monastery. The masterpiece of Tibetan Buddhist architecture, this Buddhist shrine shows you the best vista of Mt. Everest standing like an Egyptian Pyramid among the other snow-white peaks. If you are lucky enough, you see the “Highest Flag Cloud in the World” floating over the Everest on sunny days. You can find the Tibetan Buddhist art and architecture used in this monastery quite different from that of the monasteries of Lhasa and Yarlung Valley. There are three major sections: the Dajing Hall, the Buddhism Hall and the Sakya Archbishop Hall; all of which are built in the traditional Mongolian style. After relishing the peaceful monastery, you start driving back towards Shigatse by enjoying the amazing view of Mt. Cho Oyu and Mt. Shishapangma. You spend the night at a comfortable guesthouse of Shigatse and enjoy the mesmerizing sight seen from the city.
Day 07: Drive Back to Lhasa
Before driving to Lhasa, you take a stroll around the cultural and historical sites that you didn’t visit last time, located in Shigatse. En route, you go past Kara La (5,010m) and Kamba La (4,794m) that reward you with fantastic natural sceneries. Another natural site you go past is the Yamdruk Lake regarded as one of the sacred lakes of Tibet. Crossing the bridge over the Yarlung River (the Brahmaputra River) which originates from the holy Mt. Kailash, you reach Lhasa. Overnight stay at a guesthouse and celebrate the successful completion of Lhasa Everest Base Camp tour.
Day 08: Final Departure
Today is the last day of Lhasa EBC tour 8 Days itinerary which we hope you enjoyed a lot. After breakfast at the hotel, the tour guide transfers you to the Lhasa Gonggar Airport for the final see-off according to your flight schedule. Full of lifelong memories of the beautiful Tibetan city, Lhasa and the invaluable experience of Everest Base Camp, you fly back home. Wish you a happy and safe journey hoping to see you again next year during Nepal visit!