Nagchu Horse Racing Festival Tour

7 Days
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Tour Type:
Private Tour
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The spectacular Nagchu Horse Racing Festival which falls the mid-August. Not only you will enjoy all sorts of competition involves horse races, yak races, tugs of war, staging of Tibetan operas in the festival days, but also you will have a chance to experience true lives of Tibet nomads.

1 Arrival in Lhasa (3680m)
2 Lhasa sightseeing
3 Lhasa sightseeing
4 Lhasa- Namtso(4718m) - Yampachen , 430km, Approx. 8hrs
5 Damxung - Nagchu 170km, approx. 3hrs
6 Nagchu – Lhasa 342km, approx. 7hrs
7 Lhasa departure

Daily Itinerary

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Day 1 Arrival in Lhasa (3680m)

When you arrive in Lhasa, our staff will pick you up at Lhasa Airport/ Railway and transfer you to the hotel. From the airport, it takes about 1.5 hours. From the train station, it only takes 20 minutes. Afterward, it's best to relax and take it easy on the first day to get acclimatized to high altitude and alleviate the jet lag. You might go to the local market and wander around the city on your own but try not to overtax yourself.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 2 Lhasa sightseeing

Today is your first day of sightseeing on the high plateau, so our guide will meet you at the hotel. Enjoy your easy travel by visiting the Potala Palace, which is the winter palace of the Dalai lama. The superb collections of Potala Palace are the gilded burial stupas of former Dalai Lamas and meditation cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet. It is best to explore the inside of the Potala in the morning for 2-3 hours. Afterward, you will walk the pilgrimage route around the Potala.

After lunch, you’ll visit the Jokhang Temple, which is well known as the center of the Tibetan Buddhism, features Buddhist prayer wheels, reclining deer, golden sutra streamers. Also, you can see a great many of pilgrims praying in front of the temple and do kora with local pilgrims.

After visiting the Jokhang Temple, you will stroll in the old alleys of Barkhor street where you can drink the sweet tea, chat with locals to experience the real life in Lhasa.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

The Potala Palace stands in the ancient Lhasa for centuries and plays an important role in Tibetan people’s beliefs.
Many pilgrims are worshipping and performing their devotions at the gate of Jokhang.
Day 3 Lhasa sightseeing

On your third day, you will be feeling much more acclimatized to Lhasa’s high elevation. It is an excellent idea to spend the day exploring Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery. In the morning, the first station is the Drepung Monastery, which is the largest of all Tibetan monasteries that housed for more than 10,000 monks. It was the residence of the Dalai Lamas until the Great Fifth Dalai Lama constructed the Potala. It was known for the high standards of its academic study and was called the Nalanda of Tibet. Later, you will visit the biggest monastery kitchen in the monastery and enjoy Buddhist sculpture carving workshop near Drepung.

Then after lunch, you will head to the Sera Monastery, which is another one of the ‘Great Three’ Gelug monasteries. It is famous for the Buddhism activities of "Monks Debate" for around 3 to 5 PM in the afternoon. Also, inside the monastery, the three sand Mandalas and colorful Rock Painting of Buddha is the hot attractions.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Drepung Monastery was the largest monastery in Tibet, with over 10,000 monks. Now, this monastery houses about 700 monks.
Sera Monastery, one of the "great three" Gelug university monasteries of Tibet.
Day 4 Lhasa- Namtso(4718m) - Yampachen , 430km, Approx. 8hrs

In the morning, we drive to the holy Namtso lake along the Qinghai-Tibet. On the way to Namtso, you will have a far view of NyenchenThanglha Snow Mountain. Enjoy the view of the vast grassland and spectacular natural scenery.

You'll arrive at Namtso Lake after passing NagelaPass(5150m), it covers a total area of more than 1900 square kilometers, being the second largest salt lake in China. At an elevation of 4718 meters, it is also the highest altitude salt lake in the world, the furthest depth being more than 33m. Besides, you can enjoy the view of Sky-Road railway with snow mountain background; while standing at the famous Nagela Pass, you can see the stunning view of holy Namtso Lake. If the weather is good, you will have a chance to enjoy the marvelous sunset view of the lake. Then we will drive to Dangxiong for and accommodation. Starting from 2019, all the guesthouses at the lakeside will be removed due to the environmental protection.

Stay overnight in Yampachen

It's the third largest saltwater lake in China.
Namtso attracts many tourists from home and abroad with its unique charm.
Day 5 Damxung - Nagchu 170km, approx. 3hrs

Today, you will head to Nagchu to watch the annual Nagqu Horse Racing Festival. There, you can enjoy a spectacular horsemanship and taste many Tibetan delicacy. Tens of thousands of herdsmen pour into the vast grassland and dotted with tents to enjoy the Festival which is included riding competition, yak race, tug of war, stone-lifting and Tibetan operas. This is really a grand and lively Horse Racing Festival that you should not miss.

It is also the traditional occasion for horse trade. The buying and selling of horses at these fairs attract the Tibetans. You can taste traditional Tibetan food in different tents and explore some unexpected goods.

Stay overnight in Nagchu

The Nagchu Horse Racing Festival is a big festival in Nagchu area.
The Nagchu Horse Racing Festival includes many events and competitions between horse farms in the area.
  • Nagqu Horse Racing Festival
Day 6 Nagchu – Lhasa 342km, approx. 7hrs

In the morning, you will continue to enjoy Nagchu Horse Racing Festival which is lasted for about one week.

After lunch, you will head back to Lhasa along with the beautiful villages and vast paint.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

The Nagchu Horse Racing Festival includes many events and competitions between horse farms in the area.
The Nagchu Horse Racing Festival is a big festival in Nagchu area.
  • Nagqu Horse Racing Festival
Day 7 Lhasa departure
Your Tibet tour ends today. After breakfasts, you will be free for the morning. Our staff will collect you at your hotel to transfer to Lhasa Airport/Railway Station.

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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Typically Asked Questions from Our Clients



Dear sir/madam, My name is Arald and I’m intresred in exploring Tibet and see the Nagchu Horse Race in August this year. I’m living in Hong Kong and consider to come by train from chengdu and take the plane back home. I’ve a China visa for business purposes which I believe isn’t valid for a touristic trip. Most likely I travel alone, hence I prefer a small tour group. I have a flexible schedule and was thinking to spend approx 10-12 days travelin around half August. I like 5 star hotels for cities like Lhasa and don’t mind very basic accommodation either. I love nature, hiking and new cultures. I’m keen hear your suggestion:-) Best regards, Arald Kapteijns



Due to Tibet's unique background, apart from a Passport and a Chinese Visa, all foreign tourists allowed to enter Tibet must have Tibet Travel Permits. We could surely get all your necessary permits to Tibet after your tour booked with us.  As your Chinese visa is for business purposes, you also need to send me your certificate of Employment in China, then we will use your passport and China visa copies as well as certificate of Employment in China to apply for them from Tibet Travel Bureau before tour starts and get them to you usually within 12 working days. Once I get it for you, I will send the copy of Tibet Permits to you by email so that you can board the train from Chengdu station. 

According to your request, how about having our 8 Days Lhasa Gyantse Shigatse Mt. Everest Group Tour plus 3 days Nagqu Horse Racing Festival private tour? 



Dear staff, I'm currently looking for a Tibet itinerary during the next August in the period 3-17. The perfect tour length would be 7 days (but a couple of extra days would be ok just in case) and I would like to focus on monasteries and local life. I've seen that there are some festivals during summer, are there any during that period? We are 3 people. Guest houses are preferred over hotels. Planning to reach and leave Lhasa from Beijing by train, no problems about buying tickets on our own. Thank you in advance.



Dear Federico Ficarelli, according to your preference & schedule, taking our 7 Days- Nagchu Horse Racing Festival Tour is perfect, this spectacular festival falls usually in mid-August each year, I will email you with details shortly. 

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