Lhasa Yarlung Valley Shigatse Tour

8 Days
Lhasa - Tsetang - Gyantse - Shigatse - Lhasa
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Tour Type:
Private Tour
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The Yarlung Valley is located in the middle of the Yarlung Tsangpo River valley. As the “cradle of Tibetan civilization”, it contains numerous important castles, monasteries, temples, meditation caves, peaks, and stupas. The first palace in Tibet, the first temple in Tibet, the mausoleum of Srongtsen Gampo, you can find them all there. Lhasa, Tsetang, Gyantse, Shigatse, this trip will lead you to main cities of Tibet Autonomous Region. The world-known attractions, like the Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Sera Monastery, and the holy lake Yamdrotso, are all included in this itinerary. Besides, tourists can visit the Tibetan Incense and Engraving workshops in Nyemo county, and you will learn the Tibetan culture more deeply.

1 Arrival in Lhasa (3680m)
2 Lhasa sightseeing
3 Lhasa sightseeing
4 Lhasa – Samye(3556m) - Trandruk (4400)- Yumbulagang(3700) – Tsetang(3560), 280km, approx 6hrs
5 Tsetang – Chongye(3800) – Gyantse(4040m), 300km, approx 6hrs
6 Gyantse-Shigatse(3840m), 96km, approx 2hrs
7 Shigatse – Lhasa, 280km, approx 5hrs
8 Lhasa departure
Day 1 Arrival in Lhasa (3680m)

This is the first day that you enter Tibet. Your guide will greet you at the airport or railway station and transfer you to the lovely hotel. It usually takes around 1.5 hours to drive from Lhasa Airport to downtown Lhasa and takes about 20mins from Lhasa Railway Station. Tourists could have a look at 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 to go 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. It’s really useful to get acclimatized to the high altitude.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 2 Lhasa sightseeing

After rest one night, today you will recover sufficiently to launch your Lhasa city tour, with a close contact with Lhasa, the political, economic, cultural, communication and tourism center of Tibet with a history 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 in the 7th. century. The gilded burial stupas of former Dalai Lamas and meditation Cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet 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 outside, you can see many pilgrims making prostrating in front of the temple. From inside, you can see the statue of Buddha Sakyamuni at his 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 that sell different Tibetan stuff, like handicraft, 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

The Potala Palace is the world's highest palace, castle and monastery.
Reconstructed in Yuan, Ming, and Qing dynasties for several times, Jokhang Temple has four stories and covers an area of about 25,000 square meters now.
Day 3 Lhasa sightseeing

In the morning, you are heading to Drak Yerpa, a place may not be that famous but with its own advantage. It consists of a monastery and a number of ancient meditation caves. There are some holes that kind of arrows left in the cliffs are believed to prove that the legendary hero Gesar of Ling had visited this valley.

In the afternoon, tourists will pay a visit to Sera Monastery, which is one of the "great three" Gelug monasteries of Tibet. Monks debate starts around 3 to 5 p.m.. It's very attractive even if you don't understand what they are talking about at all. If the debate is not your type, you can also see the three sand Mandalas and colorful Rock Painting of Budda inside of the monastery. Besides, the sight in Sera monastery is very good because you can see roses around. That's why people also call it "the court of wild rose".

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Drak Yerpa was built by Songtsan Gampo, the first emperor of a united Tibet, in the 7th century for his wife.
Sera Monastery, one of the "great three" Gelug university monasteries of Tibet.
Day 4 Lhasa – Samye(3556m) - Trandruk (4400)- Yumbulagang(3700) – Tsetang(3560), 280km, approx 6hrs

Today you will leave Lhasa and head to the next city. After Samye, Trandruk, and Yumbulakang, finally, you will arrive Tsetang and spend one night there.

Samye Monastery was founded in the 8th century. That time was called “the Tubo Dynasty” in Tibet. And it’s the first monastery that tonsured monks lived in.

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 made of pearls and gems, attracts Buddhists come to worship.

Yumbulakang Palace, with a history more than 2100 years, is the first palace in Tibet. It stands on the slope of a hill and was reputed to be the palace of Tibetan first king, Nyatri Tsanpo.

Stay overnight in Tsetang

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.
Trandruk Monastery
Day 5 Tsetang – Chongye(3800) – Gyantse(4040m), 300km, approx 6hrs

Today you will go to Gyantse via Chongye.

Chongye Burial Mounds is located in Chongye county, there are only 9 mausoleums you can see now. The most famous one is the mausoleum of Srongtsen Gampo. Chongye county has a moderate climate and good scenery, and it was Srongtse Gampo’s hometown. People believed that’s why Srongtsen Gampo chose here to sleep forever.

On the way to Gyantse, you can have a glimpse of Yamdroktso Lake. This is the holy lake surrounded by plenty of snow-capped mountains. And special views of Holy Mount Nyenchen Khangsar ( 7191m)---the highest mountain near Lhasa, comes out later soon.

You will see the Karola Glacier when we pass it on the roadside. After hanging pray flag at Simila Mountain pass, we will arrive at Gyantse, the third largest city in Tibet after Lhasa and Shigatse.

Stay overnight in Gyantse

Only wild flowers and stone lions accompany those Tibetan kings of the past.
Bathing in sunshine, Yamdrok lake is dispalying its dazzling beauty to visitors both home and abroad
Day 6 Gyantse-Shigatse(3840m), 96km, approx 2hrs

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 the fierce fighting. It was 1904, British troops started to attack China here, and Tibetan people defended for 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. 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 field (in summer).

Stay overnight in Shigatse

Gyantse Dzong or Gyantse Fortress is one of the best preserved dzongs in Tibe
Pelkor Chode Monastery
Day 7 Shigatse – Lhasa, 280km, approx 5hrs

In the morning, drive to visit the Tashilhunpo Monastery which is founded by the First Dalai Lama in 1447, the monastery's structure was expanded by the Fourth and successive Panchen Lamas. Tashilhunpo is the seat of the Panchen Lama since the Fourth Panchen Lama took charge in the monastery, and there are now nearly 800 lamas.

After that, we transfer to Yungdrungling Monastery. It is one of the few remaining Bon Monastery's remaining in Tibet. Often referred to as the original religion of Tibet, it came about during the 11th century. The Monastery is rather small but in a wonderful setting with only a few monks to maintain the many valuable Bon writings. This is a great side trip when traveling between Lhasa and Shigatse.

Today's sightseeing will end on visiting the Tibetan Incense Workshop in Nyemo. There still keeps a natural way to make incense and this intact craftsmanship can trace back to 1300 years ago, which is listed as state-level intangible cultural heritage. Walking along streams and bridges, there are many spots for visitors to experience its procedures.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Tashilhunpo Monaster was founded by the First Dailai Lama in 1447
Like most Tibetan monasteries, Yungdrungling Monastery was built under a hill.
Day 8 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.

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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Lhasa Yarlung Valley Shigatse Tour



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 Drak Yerpa, Sera monastery 4 Lhasa – Samye(3556m) - Trandruk (4400)- Yumbulakang (3700) – Tsetang (3560), 191km, approx. 4hrs Samye Monastery, Trandruk Monastery, Yumbulakang Palace 5 Tsetang – Chongye (3800) – Gyantse(4040m), 183km, approx. 3hrs Yamdroktso Lake, Chongye Burial Mounds, Karola Glacier 6 Gyantse-Shigatse(3840m), 96km, approx. 2hrs Pelkor Chöde Monastery with Gyantse Kumbum, Far view of Gyantse Dzong, Shalu Monastery 7 Shigatse – Lhasa, 280km, approx. 6-7hrs Tashilunpo Monastery, Yungdrungling Monastery, Tibetan Incense Workshop in Nyemo 8 Lhasa departure Send off to airport/railway station



Hi, We would be interested by the M06 tour from the Sat 14th of Oct to the Sat 21st of Oct. Is it possible during this period ? What would be the total cost / person for this tour ? I understood that this cost is including the daily accomodation, the daily breakfast, the cost for the car + driver, the cost for the guide and the cost for the Tibet tourism permit. Am I right ? For the time being, we didn't book yet any flight ticket and we didn't start the process for getting the Chinese visa, waiting for more visibility from your side regarding the details for this trip (total cost, approval of the period and lead time for getting all the documents). Thank you for your reply. Best Regards Frederic LIBAUD



Dear Libaud, 

Yes, it’s definitely possible to take our 8 Days Lhasa Yarlung Valley Shigatse Tour on 14th Oct as it’s a private tour and quite flexible, so you could start it based on your schedule. 

I will send you the quotation of it with detailed service inclusions and exclusions shortly by email. 

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