Essence of Nepal Bhutan Tibet Tour
- 8 Days
- Kathmandu - Paro - Thimphu - Paro - Lhasa
- Tour Type:
- Private Tour
Appreciate the iconic attractions in Kathmandu, Bhutan, and Tibet. The three Durbar Squares represent the cultural and historical features of Kathmandu Valley and even the entire Nepal. After admiring the Himalayas on the plane, you will land at Paro, Bhutan, where the famous Taktshang Monastery hangs on the cliff. In Thimphu, you'll visit the political center Trashi Chhoe Dzong and National Memorial Chorten. In Lhasa, you will witness the magnificent Potala Palace, lively Barkhor Street, and the Tibetan Buddhis center Jokhang Temple, which continue capturing the imagination of the tourists.
|Day||Route||Attractions & Activities|
|1||Arrival in Kathmandu||Pick up and transfer to the hotel.|
|2||Kathmandu Sightseeing||Swyambhunath Stupa, Boudhanath Stupa, Pashupatinath Temple|
|3||Fly to Paro(2200m) and transfer to Thimphu(2648m)||Rinpung Dzong, Trashi Chhoe Dzong, Takin Zoo|
|4||Thimphu - Paro, 55km, Approx. 1.5hrs||Tiger's Nest, Kyichu Lhakhang, local market in Paro|
|5||Fly to Kathmandu and then to Lhasa||Send off to Paro Airport and Pick up from Lhasa Gonggar Airport|
|6||Lhasa City||Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street|
|7||Lhasa Suburb||Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery|
|8||Lhasa departure||Send off to the airport/train station|
Today you will start to explore Kathmandu with our experienced Nepali guide.
Firstly, you will go to Swyambhunath Temple to see the stupa there. Swyambhunath was built 2000 years ago, even older than Kathmandu city! It’s one of the World's Cultural Heritages in Nepal. And it’s also called “ Monkey Temple” as there are hundreds of wild monkeys live around it. The Swyambhunath Stupa is the second largest stupa in Nepal. The Buddha's eyes were painted on the four sides of the stupa, which means Buddha is watching you. The paint makes it so sacred that many pilgrims come to worship.
Then you will go to see the largest stupa in Nepal, as well as in the world. Boudhanath Stupa is located in the eastern of Kathmandu. 90% of Nepalese are Hindu devotees. you can see Lord Shiva everywhere. But here, Boudhanath is a holy place of Tibetan Buddhism as it’s located in the main trading pass between Nepal and Tibet. So, every morning, there are many Tibetan Buddhists doing kora here, which is really an impressive scene.
In the end, we are heading to Pashupatinath Temple, the largest Hindu temple in Nepal. The god of destruction— Shiva is enshrined in it. “Pashu” means “all living creatures”, “Patinath” means “the lord”. This temple is also known as “corpse cremation temple” because it’s the place where Hindu devotees cremate the dead bodies in public.
Stay overnight in Kathmandu
After breakfast, you will take the Royal Bhutan Airlines flight to Paro Airport, Bhutan. During the flight, you will enjoy the spectacular beauty of the Himalayas. After watching the beautiful plateau scenery on the plane, you will arrive at Paro Airport, the only airport in Bhutan. Upon arrival, you can see Rinpung Dzong not far away from the airport, about 900 meters. It's the most famous temple in Bhutan and perhaps the best representative of Bhutanese architecture you will see. Your Bhutanese guide will wait for you outside the terminal building. Then drive 1.5hrs to the capital of Bhutan - Thimphu, which is 55 kilometers away.
In the afternoon, you will visit Trashi Chhoe Dzong, a majestic and grand castle on the west bank of the Wangchu River. This is the office of the current king and the seat of the internal affairs and finance departments. It is also the summer residence of religious leaders and central religious institutions. After the visit, go north to Takin Zoo, where is exclusively built for Bhutan's national animal - takin. Takin is a creature with a sheep head and cow body which is only living in Bhutan.
Stay overnight in Thimphu
In the morning you will drive back to Paro Valley to the Taktsang Monastery, perched on the side of the mountain. Taktsang (commonly known as Tiger's Nest) is the most sacred site in Bhutan and one of the top ten super temples in the world to go. Located at an elevation of 3120 meters, Taktsang is the birthplace of Bhutanese Buddhism. Guru Rinpoche flew here from Tibet on the back of a tigress, which was the manifestation of his divine consort Yeshe Tsogyal.
You can ride a horse or walk to Tiger’s Nest. It is a challenging trek so you will gain merit with every step. The view from the Paro Valley to the monastery is worth your climb. The hike starts from a gentle forest with some prayer flags. After passing a creek and some water-powered prayer wheels, the trail starts getting steeper.
On the halfway up the monastery, there is a nice teahouse with great views of Taktsang Monastery that makes a welcome stopping point. You can get some tea and take a break here. You can continue climbing to the viewpoint, where's the best place to take photos of Taktsang. From here, you will walk down a series of steep stairs to a waterfall to achieve your final ascent to the entrance. Here you will be required to leave your backpacks, cameras, and phones.
In the afternoon, you will visit Kyichu Lhakhang, the oldest temple in Bhutan. After visiting today’s attractions, if time permits, your tour guide can also take you to visit the ordinary market in Paro, where you can buy some handicrafts with Bhutanese characteristics.
Stay overnight in Paro
Today you will be taken to the airport in Paro in the morning, for the flight to Kathmandu in the morning. You will get breathtaking views of the Himalayas from the plane, including the sacred Mt. Jumolhari, known as the "bridge of Kanchenjunga", and its companion mountain, Mt. Jichu Drake.
In the noon, you can board the plane from Kathmandu to Lhasa. If possible, please choose a seat on the right hand, therefore you can see Mt. Everest when your plane passes by.
Our tour guide and driver will pick you up from the airport. After being transferred to the hotel, you will be free to wander around the city on your own for the rest of the day but try not to overtax yourself. The first day's well-rest is crucial to acclimatize to the high altitude. Remember to drink lots of water, eat light, and not take a shower if you can help it.
In the morning your guide will meet you at the hotel and take you to visit the famous Potala Palace, the cardinal landmark of Tibet and the masterpiece of Tibetan architecture. It was first built by the 33rd King Songtsen Gangpo in the 7th century and rebuilt later by the 5th Dalai Lama in the 17th century. Now it is a museum and world heritage site.
In the afternoon, we will go to visit Jokhang Temple in the center of the old Lhasa city. Jokhang Temple is the most sacred temple in Tibet and it is always bustling with earnest local pilgrims since the early days. After that, you will take a walk around the Barkhor Street which is one of the most devotional circuits as well as a crowded central market of Lhasa. Barkhor Street is a very ancient round street surrounding the Jokhang Temple and the locals are always proud of it. As a symbol of Lhasa, it is also a must-see place for visitors.
Stay overnight in Lhasa
Today’s first attraction is Drepung Monastery. Drepung means "piles of rice" in Tibetan, which symbolizes prosperity. It's the world's largest monastery that housed more than 10,000 monks in the past. Also, It's the highest-ranking monastery in the Gelug Sect. After lunch, you will continue to visit the Sera Monastery, the most beautiful Tibetan monastery in Lhasa. The most attractive activity at Sera Monastery is to watch Buddhist scriptures debating from around 3 to 5 in the afternoon.
Stay overnight in Lhasa
- Tibet Tourism Bureau Permit and all other necessary permits to Tibet;
- All entrance tickets fee for tourist attractions listed in the itinerary;
- Experienced local English-speaking tour guide;
- Travel-licensed vehicle according to group size & season as itinerary needed including gas and parking fee;
- All lodging listed in the itinerary; it’s your decision about the accommodation class: luxury 5-star international hotel, comfortable 4-star hotel, economic 3-star hotel, or guesthouse. Please tell us your preference;
- Breakfasts provided by hotels;
- Pick-up & Drop-off service from Airport/railway station;
- Travel Agency Liability insurance;
- Government tax;
- Express delivery fee of Permit (eg. SF. Express);
- Food & lodgings for guide & driver;
- Oxygen tank for emergency use;
- Two bottles of mineral water per person per day.
- International flight to and out of China;
- Chinese Visa/China Group Visa; (Note: we could help you by providing the hotel or domestic flight reservation copies for your Chinese Visa or the invitation letter for your China Group Visa)
- Domestic flight/train to and out of Lhasa; (We can help you book the domestic flight/train ticket at the BEST price. Please contact us for details.)
- Meals are not included but we will recommend some good ones for you according to your requirements. Usually, it takes 3-10 USD per person for each meal.
- While the gratuity for guide and driver is NOT mandatory, it is expected. Based on their service, you can tip them on the last day of the tour. Each of you is suggested to tip them 5-10 USD/day in total;
- All the commission and tax charged by PayPal, Bank, and government when making payment. (e.g. PayPal --- 4.4%. Wire transfer --- 2%);
- Personal expenses, like laundry, phone call, snacks, soft drinks, optional tour activities, etc.
- Anything not mentioned in the Inclusions.
The initial itinerary that was sent to me called for Drepung/Sera on first full day, then Potala/Jokhang the next day. We ended up doing Potala first day and were grouped with 3 other tourists. Not a huge problem and we are used to having to be flexible when we travel, but would have been nice to ha ....Read more testimonials...