Lhasa Namtso Tsetang Tour

9 Days
Lhasa - Lake Namtso - Tsetang - Lhasa
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Tour Type:
Private Tour
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If you’re very interested in the Tibetan culture, we highly recommend to you the 9 days Lhasa Namtso Tsetang Tour. After spending several days to see the main attractions in Lhasa, you’ll go to the holy lake Namtso. On the way, you can enjoy the view of the vast grassland and spectacular natural scenery. Meanwhile, you have the chance to take a bath in the famous Yampachen Hot Spring. Tsetang will be the last destination for you in Tibet. It is situated near the flank of Mount Gongbori and is home to the ruins of the ancient Gajiu Monastery. It is known as the cradle of Tibetan's civilization.

1 Arrival in Lhasa (3680m)
2 Lhasa sightseeing
3 Lhasa sightseeing
4 Lhasa - Tsurphu - Yangpachen – Damxung (4200m), 160km, approx 3hrs
5 Damxung - Namtso - Reting – Tidrum, 460km, approx 10hrs
6 Tidrum - Drigung Til – Tsetang (3560m), 300km, approx 5.5hrs
7 Tsetang - Trandruk - Yumbulagang - Chongye – Tsetang, 70km, approx 1.5hrs
8 Tsetang - Samye – Lhasa, 160km, approx 3hrs
9 Lhasa departure

Daily Itinerary

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Day 1 Arrival in Lhasa (3680m)

Our staff will greet you at Lhasa Airport/Railway to transfer you to the hotel. From Lhasa Airport to downtown Lhasa, it usually takes abt 1.5hrs; from Lhasa Railway Station, abt 20mins. After transferred to the hotel, the rest of the day you will be free to wander around the city on your own but try not to overtax yourself. The first day's well-rest is crucial to acclimatize the high altitude. Remember to drink lots of water, eat light, and not to shower if you can help it.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 2 Lhasa sightseeing

Today's tour will begin to visit the famous world heritage Potala Palace. It’s situated on the Red Hill of central Lhasa; Potala Palace is the highest ancient palace in the world, reaching 3,767.19m at the topmost point. The most valuable collections of Potala Palace are the gilded burial stupas of former Dalai Lamas and meditation Cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet.

In the afternoon, take an easy visit to Jokhang Temple in the center of the Old Lhasa city. Jokhang temple is the most sacred temple in all over Tibet and it is always bustling with earnest local pilgrims. After you visit the temple you have time to walk around the Barkhor street which is the one of the most devotional circuit as well as the crowded central market of Lhasa since from a long time, in the early days it is the most famous local market but now it is changed to the tourist gift shopping center.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

The Potala Palace is the world's highest palace, castle and monastery.
Three Tibetan women at the gate of Jokhang Temple.
Day 3 Lhasa sightseeing

Our guide and driver will pick you up at the hotel in the early morning and then drive to visit the Drepung Monastery which is located at the foot of the Mountain Gambo Utse, 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) from the western suburb of Lhasa, the Drepung Monastery is known as the most important monastery of Gelugpa in Tibetan Buddhism. It was founded in 1416 by Jamyang choge, one of the Tsongkhapa’s main disciples.

After lunch, you are going to visit the Sera Monastery which is located at the foot of Tatipu Hill in the northern suburb of Lhasa City; Sera Monastery is one of three famous monasteries in the city along with the Drepung Monastery and the Ganden Monastery. One of the main attractions of Sera Monastery is debating. As a part of their study, lamas must participate in debates to further their comprehension and proceed to more advanced levels of study. The debating usually is held at around 3 - 5 in the afternoon except for Sunday.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Drepung Monastery is also a Buddhist education base. It is the best place to learn and impart the Buddhism.
Sera Monassrey is located at the foot of Tatipu Hill in the northern suburb of Lhasa City
Day 4 Lhasa - Tsurphu - Yangpachen – Damxung (4200m), 160km, approx 3hrs

Today we'll drive from Lhasa to Damxung along the National Highway No. 109. En route, visit Tsurphu Monastery. Tsurphu Monastery is located in Gurum town of Doilungdêqên County, 70km from Lhasa. It was built in the middle of the valley facing south with high mountains surrounding the monastery complex. Yampachen is a town approximately 87km north-west of Lhasa, halfway to Damxung. The area is famous for the Yangpachen hot springs, which have been harnessed to produce much of the electricity for the capital Lhasa. Hot springs in Yampachen are of high mineral contents. Taking a bath in the hot spring, you will feel easy and relaxed. You can choose to bath in an indoor hot spring or an outdoor hot spring. Though it is very comfortable to enjoy the hot spring, you are not advised to bath too long in the hot spring.

Stay overnight in Damxung

Tsurphu Monastery is a gompa which serves as the traditional seat of the Karmapa, the head of the Karma Kagyu lineage of Tibetan Buddhism.
There are many rare and historical relics in Tsurphu Monastery.
Day 5 Damxung - Namtso - Reting – Tidrum, 460km, approx 10hrs

Head to Namtso Lake from Damxung in the morning, it’ll take about 1.5 hours. Namtso Lake means 'the holy lake' in the Tibetan language. The lake covers a total area of more than 1,900 square kilometers, being the second largest salt lake in China. It is also the highest altitude salt lake in the world. After sightseeing, we’ll go to visit the Reting Monastery in Rong-chu Valley. Spend the night at the guesthouse of Tidrum Nunnery where hot springs are available.

Stay overnight in Tidrum

Namtso Lake is the highest saltwater lake in the world.
Reting Monastery has a history of more than 900 years.
Day 6 Tidrum - Drigung Til – Tsetang (3560m), 300km, approx 5.5hrs

About a half-hour drive from Tidrum, takes you to Drigung Til Monastery overlooking the Zhorong-chu Valley. Please be fully aware that the formidable and mysterious sky burial site nearby, is not allowed for visit or photograph due to religious reasons. Please respect the custom of local Tibetans. 2~3 hours later, we'll continue to go to Tsetang which is the capital of Shannan prefecture and the second-largest town in the region.

Stay overnight in Tsetang

The life of nuns in Tidrum Nunnery is simple and unadorned.
Drigung Til Monastery once had a very brilliant position in the history of Tibet.
Day 7 Tsetang - Trandruk - Yumbulagang - Chongye – Tsetang, 70km, approx 1.5hrs

Visit the major sights of Yarlung Valley in Tsetang today, of which is considered the cradle of Tibetan civilization. Trandruk Monastery is situated on the southern slope of the Mt. Gangpo Ri about two kilometers from the Tsetang Town. So far, it has a history of about 1,300 years. Yumbulagang also called "palace of mother and son", is counted as the first building in Tibet, with a history of over 2,000 years. Standing on the top of the tower house, you can enjoy the splendid panoramic view of the valley, and dream of the ancient legends of this palace. Finally, we'll go to the Chongye Valley to have a look at the burial mounds. Whilst the valley is sometimes referred to as the 'Graveyard of Imperial Kings', these burial mounds contain not only the remains of Tibetan kings, but also those of their wives and officials.

Stay overnight in Tsetang

Trandruk Monastery
Yumbu means doe, lagang means holy palace.
Day 8 Tsetang - Samye – Lhasa, 160km, approx 3hrs

After breakfast, we’ll drive back to Lhasa. On the way, we’ll go to visit the Samye Monastery which is located abt 30km from Tsetang. It is the first temple to be built in Tibet and the first complete with the three Buddhist jewels of Buddha, Dharma and Sangha. With these unique features, this splendid temple has become an attraction for visitors from near and far. The best shooting location for Samye Monastery is on the Haiburi Holy Mountain that is ahead of Samye Township. Or you also can choose to take pictures at a pagoda of the hillside if your energy is limited.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Samye Monastery
Samye Monastery is a good place for monks to study. If you travel there, you may have a chance to observe the monks’ study and feel all the ritual and their sincerity.
Day 9 Lhasa departure
Your tour ends today. Our guide and driver will collect you from your hotel to transfer to Lhasa Airport/Railway Station for your next destination.

Cost & Inquiry

Our private customized Tibet tours are ideal for families, small groups and individual travellers who desire a more thorough and intimate introduction to Tibet. Price varies with size, season, hotel rate. etc. Please fill out this form so our travel designers can start helping you plan a trip.

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