How to Plan a Nepal Tibet Bhutan Tour?
- Last Updated: 2023-10-24
Nepal, the birthplace of Lord Buddha Shakyamuni, is the kingdom of the gods. Tibet, the roof of the world, has fantastic landscapes and Tibetan Buddhist culture. Bhutan is the Land of the Thunder Dragon. Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan are small kingdoms in the Himalayas, where civilizations have blended since ancient times. They are remote, mysterious and full of vitality. For thousands of years, they have lived in seclusion in the north and south of the Himalayas, between the two ancient countries of China and India. They were influenced by the major civilizations, yet at the same time, they formed their own unique styles.
Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan, are rich in history, diverse cultures and natural beauty, linked by the Himalayas and Buddhism.
Nepal, a landlocked country lies deep in the heart of the Himalayas bordering China to the north and India to the south. It is the birthplace of the founder of Buddhism, Gautama Buddha. The culture of Nepal has much in common with its nearest neighbors, India and Tibet. Here in Nepal, you can see the snow-covered mountains and dense tropical forests full of beautiful creatures. In Kathmandu, you will encounter an unforgettable melting pot of ancient Hindu and Buddhist cultures. You can visit the stunning Durbar Squares in the breathtaking Kathmandu Valley, explore local markets and bazaars, and discover the UNESCO heritage sites including a wealth of temples, palaces, and shrines. Outside of Kathmandu, there are numerous trekking routes and national parks.
With unique natural scenery and profound Buddhist culture, Tibet is one of the most popular tourist destinations that butts up to the mighty Himalayas. With the development of Tibet tourism, there are numerous tourists who travel to Tibet every year. When traveling to Tibet, you can not only explore the holy Mount Everest and Mount Kailash but also appreciate the historical sites and Buddhist architecture such as the sacred Jokhang Temple and Potala Palace in Lhasa. To cope with the environment on the highest altitude plateau in the world, the Tibetan people live simple lives, based on their splendid culture and the mysterious Tibetan Buddhism.
Bhutan bordered Tibet to the north, which is another landlocked country butting onto the Himalayas. It's a place where time seems to stand still centuries ago in the pastoral setting of the Paro Valley and the ancient capital city of Thimphu. With the various elevations, Bhutan has a complicated climate from the subtropical climate in the highlands to the polar-type climate in the north. As a mountainous adventure destination, Bhutan is popular among tourists. It is an excellent idea to do the popular treks in the country including the Jhomolhari Base Camp Trek, Snowman Trek, and Masagang Trek.
Required Permits and Visas
The travel documents required for travel in Nepal are a Nepal tourist visa and your passport. If you are traveling between Tibet and Nepal, please bring your Tibet Travel Permit which has been thoroughly checked at the Sino-Nepal border. Also, a Bhutan visa should be applied in advance.
For Nepal, visas can be obtained on arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport, or you can obtain them from the embassy or online. Of the three, Nepal is the easiest place to get into and has no restrictions on independent travel around the country. Apply for a multi-entry Nepalese visa, as you will be traveling through Kathmandu more than once on the tour.
For all foreign Travelers traveling to Tibet, you need to apply for a Chinese visa and a Tibet Travel Permit. You can apply for a China visa on your own through the Chinese Embassy in your country. As for the Tibet Travel Permit, it was only issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau and can be obtained by a travel agency in Tibet. For other areas of Tibet, your tour guide will obtain the Alien’s Travel Permit and the Military permit, so that you are able to travel to all of the permitted areas of the region.
With various restrictions on individual travel in Bhutan, all visitors must be on a registered tour. If you already booked a travel agency in Tibet, They will take care of your Bhutan Visa and they will forward to you 3-4 weeks before your trip.
Nepal Tibet Bhutan Travel Routes
There are currently no flights or accessible ports between Tibet and Bhutan, so passengers cannot travel directly between Tibet and Bhutan. Nepal is connected to Tibet by plane and land, and to Bhutan by plane, so people always use Nepal as a stopover during their trips. You can take an international flight to Nepal, then to Tibet or Bhutan, then back to Nepal, and then to Bhutan or Tibet. You can also go to Tibet first, then Nepal, and finally Bhutan to avoid a detour or the opposite route from Bhutan to Tibet via Nepal. But please note, besides Nepal, there are a few flights to Bhutan from several countries such as India, Thailand, Singapore, and Bangladesh. So comparing with Bhutan, Tibet is more applicable as the starting point. Depending on the gateway to Nepal, Tibet or Bhutan, you can have different travel routes.
Option I - Tibet Nepal Bhutan Tour
You will set foot in Tibet, Nepal and Bhutan in just 13 days. This trip combines the history of Buddhism with current practices across the three countries, and you can explore the union of Buddhist lifestyle, cultural heritage and architecture
Depart from the holy city of Lhasa, where you will visit the landmark Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple. After that, drive westward, pass by the famous Buddhist cultural cities of Gyantse and Shigatse, and then arrive at the Everest Base Camp. The incredible natural scenery of Mount Everest will make you unforgettable forever. Later, you will travel by land via Gyirong Port to Nepal, the birthplace of Buddha Shakyamuni. The capital, Kathmandu, is a sacred place of religion and mythology. Here you will visit the three major Dubar squares (Kathmandu, Patan, and Badgang). The famous Boudhanath stupa is located in the eastern part of Kathmandu and contains the relics of ancient Buddhas. No matter where you are in Kathmandu, you can see carved patterns and figures related to religious beliefs. Finally, you will fly from Kathmandu to Bhutan, which is the last Shangri-La on earth. Here you will visit Taktshang, the most famous Buddhist shrine in Bhutan and Punakha Dzong, which is the most beautiful Dzong in Bhutan.
Option II - Nepal Bhutan Tibet Tour
This trip covers three mysterious Himalayan areas: Nepal, Bhutan and Tibet. Starting from Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, you will experience the collision and integration of Hindu and Buddhist cultures, as well as the famous World Heritage Sites. There are many famous world heritage sites, such as the Three Durbar Squares, Swyambhunath Stupa and Boudhanath Stupa. The lively market and enthusiastic local people will also impress you. Next, you will fly from Kathmandu to Paro, Bhutan. After enjoying the magnificent scenery of the eastern Himalayas, you enter the "Land of Thunder Dragon". Here is the "Tiger's Nest" known as "one of the top ten super temples in the world". If you travel to the capital of Thimphu, you can see Tarkin, the unique animal of Bhutan, and Tashi chhoe Dzong, the political center and office of the current king. The last stop is Lhasa, the capital of Tibet. You will explore the landmark Potala Palace, stroll along Barkhor Street, and watch vibrant Tibetan monks debating at Sera Monastery. This is a unique opportunity to experience the pure Himalayan culture.
Option III - Bhutan, Nepal and Tibet Tour
The 15 days tour starts when you arrive in Kathmandu, Nepal. There are many recommended places in Kathmandu. This 1200-year-old city is famous for its ancient temples and palaces. You will visit the three Durbar Squares in the Kathmandu Valley, and then you will come to Nagarkot, to have a panoramic view of the Himalayas. At the end of the first leg of the journey, you will take a scenic flight to Paro International Airport in Bhutan. On the next day, a professional guide will take you through the Paro Valley, hike up to the Taktshang on the cliff. During the following days, you will travel to Punakha via the Dochula Pass and return back Paro via Thimphu. You will visit Punakha Dzong - the most beautiful Dzong in Bhutan; National Memorial Chorten - the landmark of Thimphu, etc. From Paro, you will fly over Kathmandu to Lhasa, the capital of the roof of the world, to visit the legendary Golden-topped Potala Palace on the hilltop. Then you will visit the most sacred monastery of Tibetan Buddhism - Jokhang Temple. Walking on the pilgrimage to Bakhor Stree, you can see various kinds of people, from nomads to lamas, and feel the strong Buddhist atmosphere. Finally, you will witness majestic natural landscapes in Tibet. This trip will introduce you to Himalayan culture, religion and nature while flying between unparalleled Himalayan countries.
Things to Know Before Visiting Nepal
Before you visit Nepal, it is necessary to know some Nepal travel tips including how to get to Nepal, cuisines, things to do, best time to go, etc.
How to Travel to Nepal from India?
Indians can travel to Nepal by flight, by road or by railway. Either a Passport or Voter ID can be valid for entry if you travel by flight or overland.
Nepal vs Bhutan, Which is Better for Tourists?
Nepal and Bhutan are located at the foot of the Himalayas, with excellent natural scenery, a great deal of ancient temples and a strong religious atmosphere.
Kathmandu Altitude: Elevation List of Main Areas and Nearby Travel Destinations
The average altitude of Kathmandu is 1,370 meters. You don’t have to worry about altitude sickness as it's such a low-altitude place.
Nepalese Food and Cuisines
When you first encounter traditional Nepalese food, their variety may dazzle you. Generally, Nepalese cuisine is deeply influenced by India.
Nepal-Bhutan Flights: Everything You Need to Know!
Kathmandu-Paro flight Route is special as it passes through the Himalayas. Drukair runs daily flights at around USD233, with a duration of 1hr 20 min.
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Lukla: World's Most Dangerous Airport and Gateway to Mt.Everest
Lukla Airport(Tenzing-Hillary Airport) is located in Lukla in eastern Nepal. It is the only gateway from Kathmandu to Mount Everest.
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