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Lhasa Tsetang Shigatse Namtso Tour

10 Days
From USD1881
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Tour Type:
Private Tour
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This is a tour focused on exploring Tibetan culture from natural and historical sites. It starts in Lhasa, where you can explore the mysteries of Tibetan Buddhism in the most revered palaces and monasteries in Tibet, and mditation retreats. Then head to Tsedang, the cradle of Tibetan civilization, with a chance to witness the first palace - Yumbulakang- and the first Buddhist monastery - Samye, as well as what is believed to be the earliest farmland in Tibetan civilization. Then, go to the central and western regions of Tibet. Along the route, there will be stops at the Yamdrotso Lake and Karolla Glaciers to sink up with their serenity and majesty, as well as the monasteries of Gyantse and Shigatse. From Shigatse, we will drive to the northern highlands to visit Namtso Lake, one of the three holy lakes in Tibet. It is surrounded by endless snow-capped mountains, like a silver-white Hada on Namtso Lake.

DayRouteAttractions & Activities
1 Arrival in Lhasa (3650m) Pick up and transfer to the hotel
2 Lhasa Sightseeing Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street
3 Lhasa Sightseeing Drak Yerpa, Sera Monastery
4 Lhasa Sightseeing Drepung Monastery, Norbulingka
5 Lhasa – Tsetang, 280km, Approx 6hrs Trandruk Monastery, Yumbulakang Palace
6 Tsetang – Gyantse, 300km, Approx 6hrs Samye Monastery, Yamdroktso Lake, Karola Glacier
7 Gyantse - Shigatse, 96km, Approx 2hrs Pelkor Chöde Monastery with Gyantse Kumbum, Gyantse Dzong, Shalu Monastery
8 Shigatse-Namtso Lake, 380km, Approx. 7.5hrs Namtso Lake, Tashilunpo Monastery
9 Namtso – Yampachen – Tsurphu – Lhasa, 250km, Approx 5hrs Yampachen Hot Springs, Tsurphu Monastery
10 Lhasa Departure Send off to the airport/railway station

Daily Itinerary


This is the first day in Tibet. Your guide will greet you at Lhasa Gonggar Airport/Railway Station and transfer you to your hotel. It usually takes around 1 hour to drive from Lhasa Airport to downtown Lhasa and takes about 20 minutes from Lhasa Railway Station. Tourists could have a look at the Yarlung Tsangpo River, the largest and longest river in Tibet on their way to the hotel. After check-in, you can have a good rest first. And if you feel like going out, you can wander around the city. But just remember that don't take too much stuff, try to go with a light pack. Meanwhile, drink some more water, and do not move strenuously. It’s really useful to get acclimatized to the high altitude.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

After resting one night, today you will recover sufficiently to launch your Lhasa city tour, with close contact with Lhasa, which is the political, economic, cultural, communication and tourism center of Tibet with a history of over 1300 years.

At first, you will go to the Potala Palace, which is the symbolic place of Lhasa and also the winter palace of the Dalai Lama. It was built by the 33rd great king of Tibet - Songtsen Gangpo in the 7th century. The gilded burial stupas of former Dalai Lamas and the meditation Cave of the 33rd great king are the most worth seeing in Potala Palace.

After lunch, you are going to Jokhang Temple, which was founded at the same time and by the same king as Potala Palace. From the outside, you can see many pilgrims prostrating in front of the temple. The most precious treasure of this temple is the statue of Buddha Sakyamuni at the age of 12.

Barkhor Street is the next destination that women love a lot. Because it’s a famous busy walking street where they can go shopping. There are many distinctive shops and stalls that sell different Tibetan stuff, like handicrafts, Thangka, and so on. Except for shopping, tourists can also join the Kora with pilgrims and locals, to explore Tibetan religious culture more deeply.


You can go to visit the Tibetan handicraft art or Tibetan Traditional Medicine center if time is enough. You can also watch the Tibetan Culture Show in the evening for USD60 per person at your own expense.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

In the morning, you are heading to Drak Yerpa, the most famous meditation retreat near Lhasa. It's a monastery embedded in the cliff wall. Drak Yerpa is described as the "life tree" or spiritual axis of Lhasa. The site had strong spiritual power, having been visited by almost all great Tibetan masters. You can feel the power of the meditation caves here.

In the afternoon, you will pay a visit to Sera Monastery, which is one of the "great three" Gelug monasteries of Tibet. Monks debate from 3 pm to 5 pm. If the debate is not your type, you can also enjoy the three sand Mandalas and colorful rock paintings of Buddha. The sight here is splendid because you can see wild roses around. That's why people also call it "the Court of Wild Rose."

Stay overnight in Lhasa

In the morning, you are heading to Drepung monastery, which means Monastery of Rice Piles in the Tibetan language. It's a white magnificent building complex that looks also like piles of rice heaps in the distance. Drepung monastery is the largest Tibetan Buddhist monastery, where lived more than 10 thousand monks in the past.

In the afternoon, you will view and admire Norbulingka. It is a typical Tibetan-style royal garden, the summer resort of the Dalai Lama. There are a lot of towering trees, exotic flowers and plants in the Garden, as well as many collections of cultural relics, Buddha statues, pagodas, thangkas, murals, etc. They are all very precious treasures.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Today you will leave Lhasa and head to Tsedang, at an altitude of 3560M.

Trandruk Monastery, the first Buddhist monastery in Tibetan history, was founded by Srongtsen Gampo and Wen Cheng princess. There is one priceless treasure in this monastery. It’s a Tangka that is made of pearls and gems, attracting Buddhists to worship.

Yumbulakang Palace, with a history of more than 2100 years, is the first palace for the Tibetan king, Nyatri Tsanpo. The entire building is shaped like a castle, towering high on the top of the mountain.

Stay overnight in Tsetang

Today you will go to Gyantse(4040M). En route, you will visit Samye Monastery, which is designed according to the mandala of Tantra. Samye Monastery is the first monastery in the history of Tibetan Buddhism with Triratna "Buddha, Dharma, and Sangha".

On the way, you can have a glimpse of Yamdroktso Lake. Standing at the lakeside, you can see its blue water shimmering with charming light, as well as the snow-capped holy Mount Nyenchen Khangsar(7191m) in the distance. And you will see the grand Karola Glacier on the roadside. After that, we will arrive at Gyantse soon.

Stay overnight in Gyantse

After breakfast, we shall visit Pelkor Monastery with Gyantse Kumbum and then see the Gyantse Fortress from a distance.

Gyantse Dzong, the hero city that witnesses the history of fierce fighting. It was 1904, British troops started to attack China here, and Tibetan people defended their homeland with simple weapons. The bloody war lasted for more than three months. This is also the basic story of the famous movie named "Red River Valley".

The last spot of the day is Shalu Monastery, the only monastery in Tibet that combines Tibetan and Chinese styles in its design.

Then we will start to go to Shigatse(3840M). It normally takes one and a half hours to drive from Gyantse to Shigatse, where we may visit the traditional barley mill and have the unique sights of barley fields (in summer).

Stay overnight in Shigatse

In the morning, tourists will visit the famous Tashilunpo Monastery, the home of Panchen Lama. It’s a typical Gelugpa Temple.

After that, you are going to see Namtso Lake (4600M), one of the three most holy lakes in Tibet. It’s also the third-largest salt lake in China and the highest lake in the world. Namtso means “lake of heaven” in the Tibetan language. And the gorgeous landscape is really like from heaven. You can enjoy one night here, and please get up early to feel the special sunrise the next day.

Stay overnight in Damxung

Today may be the most relaxing day during this journey because tourists are going to Yampachen. Located 92km from Lhasa city, Yampachen is rich in geothermal energy and is known for its hot spring baths. People enjoy the blue sky and white clouds when taking a bath in therapeutic hot springs. How romantic the feeling is!

After the bath, you will go to visit Tsurphu Monastery, the last attraction in your tour. It’s the main monastery of Karma Kargyu. And the remarkable system of Tibetan Buddhism reincarnation originated from there.

Then after driving for about 2 hours, you will get back to Lhasa.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Your tour ends today. Our guide and driver will collect you from your hotel and transfer you to Lhasa Airport/Railway Station for your next destination.
Tour Price and Service

From US$1881 p/p

Based on 3-star hotels for 2 people in low seasons. Price varies according to travel season, number of people and level of accommodation.


  • 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.

Typically Asked Questions from Our Clients

Asked by juli***


I am traveling to Kathmandu in September to do the Everest Base Camp, after that, I would like to visit Tibet.

I have 10 days available from the 16th Oct to the 25th to travel to this destination from Kathmandu.

Whats the best "bugdet" tour you could offer me?

Many thanks in advance


Answered by Nance

In your inquiry, you mentioned you would like to do our 10 days Lhasa Tsetang Shigatse Namtso Tour, which is a private tour. For people less than five, we usually suggest you join our small group tours to keep the cost down. So I suggest you join our 10 days Lhasa Gyantse Shigatse Everest Namtso Group Tour on October 16th. Here is the brief itinerary, 

Asked by Lanh***

Dear Great Tibet Tour
I travel alone.
I intend to visit Tibet in May
Below is some of my requests:
1. Single room at hotel 2*
2. I also think about group. With this tour, do you have group tour? How many pax is for group tour?
3. Visa to Tibet: is your service including visa/ support to get visa?
Fyi: i'm Vietnamese.
4. Tour guide: English speaking.
5. Visit Duration: 7-10 days
6. Tour theme: culture and landscape
7. If you have other offers, please suggest me.

I'm looking forward to your reply and this trip
Thank you very
Kind regards

Answered by Beatrice
Dear Lanhnguyen, Thanks for sending us your inquiry! 1. Yes. We can arrange single room at hotel 2* for you as your requirement. 2. We do have group tour. But we don't have the same itinerary as the private tour you mentioned. We have group tour to go to Lhasa-Shigates-Namtso instead. Here is the itinerary, For group pax, 12 travellers maximum per group. 3. If you join our tour, we will arrange Tibet Permit for you. 4. And, of course, we will provide English speaking guide. 5. The tour itinerary I listed above is for 7 days. Please let me know what do you think of it. 6. The itinerary is mainly about culture and landscape as you mentioned. Best regards, Beatrice

Asked by Anne***

Tashi delek,
Due to cancellation of group tour, group coming from Nepal, I need to make new arrangements.
I am looking at your tour MO5. Lhasa Tsetang Shigatse Namtso Tour

What would it cost? I arrive September 28. Fly out on Oct. 8.
10-day tour could be: September 29 to October 8.

Hope to hear from you soon
Annemieke Vermeer

Answered by Amy

Dear Annemieke Vermeer,

If you are still planning to enter Tibet from Nepal, please kindly note: you are required to apply for China Group Visa in Kathmandu with our assistance as long as you enter Tibet from Nepal(if so your individual China visa will be useless), but have you heard that Chinese embassy in Kathmandu is closed from 18th Sep to 28th Oct? It will be open again on 29th Oct, so I hope you could postpone your travelling date a little bit and start our 10 Days Lhasa Tsetang Shigatse Namtso Tour in earlier Nov, this is a private tour. 

Asked by Jess***

Lhasa Tsetang Shigatse Namtso Tour

Answered by Caroline
Day Route Attractions & Activities 1 Arrival in Lhasa (3680m) Pick up and transfer to the hotel. 2 Lhasa sightseeing The Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street 3 Lhasa sightseeing Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery 4 Lhasa- Drigung Til – Lhasa, 150km, approx. 3hrs Norbulingka, Drigung Til Monastery 5 Lhasa - Basumtso - Nyingchi Basumtso Lake, Bayi Town 6 Nyingtri - Lulang - Nyingchi Lulang Forest 7 Nyingtri – Tsetang, 600km, approx. 10hrs. 8 Tsetang - Trandruk - Yumbulagang - Tsetang Trandruk Monastery, Yumbulakang Palace 9 Tsetang – Chongye (3800) – Gyantse(4040m), 183km, approx. 3hrs Yamdroktso Lake, Chongye Burial Mounds, Karola Glacier 10 Gyantse-Shigatse(3840m), 96km, approx. 2hrs Pelkor Chöde Monastery with Gyantse Kumbum, Far view of Gyantse Dzong, Shalu Monastery 11 Shigatse-Namtso lake (4600m), 380km, approx. 7.5hrs Namtso Lake, Tashilunpo Monastery 12 Namtso – Yampachen(4300m) – Tsurphu(4300m) – Lhasa(3680m), 250km, approx. 5hrs Yampachen Hot Springs, Tsurphu Monastery 13 Lhasa departure Send off to airport/railway station
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First of all, let me thank you and your team for the very nice trip I had in/around Chengdu and Tibet. All went very well and smoothly and I enjoyed it a lot. Sophie was a real joy to have as a guide, very kind, helpful and enthusiastic - big thanks to her for making me feel very comfortable on the ....

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