Shishapangma, hidden from Nepal by the Himalayan range, is highly regarded as our most remote and most scenic trips in all of Tibet. The high altitude walk is a little easier as there are no major passes to ascend. However, the landscape and scenery along the way rivals any other Himalayan Trek. The lack of other tourist along the way also makes this journey even more rewarding. The beautiful weather during the day, yet rain at night, allows for a wondrous walk through lush meadows and blossoming wildflowers.
After our awe-inspiring trek we will visit the historic city of Lhasa. This wondrous city is generally regarded as the heart of Tibet and is filled with unparalleled history, culture, and beauty. The Potala Palace dominates the skyline with its powerful and ancient architecture. The numerous temples and monasteries surrounding the city, such as the Jokhang and Drepung, allow travelers to experience Tibetan Buddhism first hand. A visit to these ancient monasteries will leave you with a sense of astonishment for years to come! Stops will be made along the way in the small towns of Gyantse and Shigatse. Allow yourself to relax in these extraordinary towns and immerse yourself in the rich Buddhist culture. You can learn a lot from these Tibetan people. It will be even easier to enjoy Tibet as nothing but the best Tibetan hotels will be provided for you.
Day 1: Drive Kathmandu - Nyalam. Our group will assemble in Kathmandu in the morning and drive through gorgeous Nepalese countryside for nearly 123 km. Upon reaching Kodari the group will complete visa procedures and border formalities with the help of our guides. On the way to Nyalam we will drive through numerous passes and valleys using a system of steep switchbacks. We will even drive through a mossy gully containing wondrous cascading waterfalls.
Day 2: Rest Day/Acclimatisation. Today is a day for you to rest and take in the beauty of Nyalam. It is important that we take it easy today and properly acclimatize to the high altitude. To provide some excitement to the day we can visit Nyalam Pelgye Ling, a small temple right out of town.
Day 3: Trek to Draabochhan (4110 m). Today we will begin our trekking adventure as we head out of town along the Tshongde Phu River Valley. It is completely up to you whether we take a shorter day and head straight to our campsite at Draabochhan or make the pilgrimage trek to Tara Tsho Lake. If you are up for the steep walk along the way, the magical lake is well worth it. Legend has it that the lake was made from a piece of ice that a lama carried from Mt. Kailash. Beautiful prayer flags and stone monuments cover the banks of the lake. We will spend the night in a comfortable campsite at Draabochhan.
Day 4: Trek to Shingdip (4560 m). Our second day of trekking leads us to the top of the ridge. Alluring views and blossoming rhododendrons surround us as we follow the ridge. Our night will be spent in an amazing meadow camp in Shingdip. Get a good sleep, because tomorrow we will reach the base camp!
Day 5: Trek to Base Camp (4980 m). Today we will head west as we follow the ridge once more. The Jugal Himal peak looms over us as we walk. After only two hours of walking we reach the base camp! Unfortunately there are no views of Shishapangma at the actual base camp. However, we have plenty of time to explore the glacial lakes and boulder plateaus which do offer impressive views. Advanced base camp is in close walking distance as well.
Day 6: Trek to Draabochhan (4110 m). After an amazing day at the base camp we will descend back to Draabochhan. Along the way, wondrous alpine meadows, rhododendrons, and views of Jugal Himal surround us.
Day 7: Trek to Nyalam (3780 m). On our seventh day we will follow our route back through the Tshongde Phu River Valley. Another amazing day of trekking! The night will be spent back in Nyalam.
Day 8: Drive to Lhatse. Some amazing days of driving and sightseeing begins today as we observe the vast difference in the lush lower hills and the barren Tibetan Plateau. Throughout the day several high passes, including Lalung La, will be crossed. From these passes, widespread views of Mt. Everest and the entire Himalayan range can be seen. Tonight will be spent in the small town of Lhatse.
Day 9: Drive to Shigatse. The beauty of the drive continues as we cross Gyatsmo La, the highest pass of our journey. On the way a string of quiet monasteries and herders can also be seen. The night will be spent at one of two traditional hotels in Shigatse, the second largest city in Tibet.
Day 10: Drive to Gyantse. Today we only need to drive a short amount so the morning will be spent exploring the Tashilhunpo Monastery. This beautiful place is one of the largest functioning monasteries left in Tibet. Our first true experience of Tibetan culture! Our final destination is the small city of Gyantse. We will be given the opportunity of experiencing more wondrous Tibetan culture as we see the Gyantse Dzong and Kumbum. Expansive views of the valley can be seen from the ancient Dzong fort. The Kumbum is much more than a stupa, as it is surrounded by numerous Tibetan murals and small chapel houses. Even if you are no art connoisseur you will be amazed by these ancient murals and architecture.
Day 11: Drive to Lhase. The highlight of today is the Karo La pass. At this pass, a towering glacier rises nearly straight up from the road. Much more is seen today as we drive through several small towns and even Yamdrok-tso, an amazing turquoise lake. The day will end in Lhasa at the Dhood Gu hotel.
Day 12: Exploring Lhasa. In the morning we will take an easy visit to Jokhang Temple. This temple is the most revered shrine in all of Tibet and is constantly bustling with devout worshipers. We will also be given the opportunity to shop in Barkor, the crowded central market of Lhasa. In the afternoon we will visit is Sera Monastery, a fifteenth century sprawl of golden roofs and whitewashed walls. This well preserved monastery is located just a few miles North of Lhasa and is home to several hundred monks. its famous debating activities are happening 3-4 pm quite regularly every day, so remind our guide not to miss it.
Day 13: Further exploration of Lhasa. A trip to Tibet would not be complete without experiencing the vital Potala Palace. This palace is Lhasa's cardinal landmark and is a wonder of Eastern architecture. Your first site of this massive structure will be a magical moment remembered for years to come. It has been a palace since the fifth or sixth century and was once home to the Dalai Lama. This truly amazing day will ended with a visit to the Drepung Monastery. Once the world's largest monastery, housing 10.000 monks, Drepung monastery lies hidden in rocky ridges just beyond the city. Surprisingly much of the building was left untouched throughout so many hundred of years.
Day 14: Fly Lhasa - Kathmandu. Experience the wondrous sight of the Himalayas for one last time as we fly back to Kathmandu!
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Asia Tibet Outdoor: Land Rambler Hiking & Trekking