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Xining Lhasa Tsetang Shigatse Everest Namtso Train Tour

16 Days
From USD2988
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Tour Type:
Private Tour
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This adventure tour is filled with everything you need for lasting memories of Tibet's unique culture and landscape, including the Qinghai-Tibet train, highland natural landscapes, Tibet's mysterious culture and breathtaking views of Mount Everest. Taking Xining as the first tourist destination, you have no reason to miss Qinghai Lake, the largest saltwater lake in China. Afterward, you will board a Tibet train to Lhasa, passing through grasslands, salt lakes, Gobi Desert, Kunlun Snow Mountains, and finally crossing the Tanggula Pass(5072 meters), the highest point of the world railway. In Lhasa and Tsetang, you will experience the mysterious culture and civilization of Tibet, then proceed along the Friendship Highway to admire the majestic Mount Everest, as well as the starry sky here. Finally, you will visit Heavenly Lake Namtso as the perfect ending to this wonderful journey.

DayRouteAttractions & Activities
1 Arrival in Xining by Flight Pick up from the airport
2 Xining - Qinghai Lake Qinghai Lake
3 Qinghai Lake-Xining-Lhasa Qinghai Tibet Railway
4 Arrival in Lhasa by Train Pick up and transfer to the hotel
5 Lhasa City Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street
6 Lhasa Sightseeing Drepung Monastery, Norbulingka
7 Lhasa - Samye - Tsetang Samye Monastery
8 Tsetang - Trandruk - Yumbulagang - Chongye - Tsetang Trandruk Monastery, Yumbulagang Palace, Chongye Burial Mounds
9 Tsetang - Gyantse Yamdroktso Lake, Karola Glacier
10 Gyantse - Shigatse Pelkor Chode Monastery, Gyantse Dzong, Shalu Monastery
11 Shigatse - Sakya - Tingri Sakya Monastery
12 Tingri - EBC - Tingri Rongbuk Monastery, Everest Base Camp
13 Tingri to Shigatse Tashilhunpo Monastery
14 Shigatse - Lhasa, 300km, Approx. 6hrs Tashilhunpo Monastery
15 Lhasa - Namtso - Lhasa Namtso Lake
16 Departure from Lhasa Send off to the airport/railway station

Daily Itinerary


Upon arrival at Xining Airport, please look for our local guide there who will be holding your name board. Then transfer to a hotel in downtown Xining. Your guide will help you check-in before leaving. You are free for the rest of the day to check out the city by yourself.

Stay overnight in Xining

Today, you will visit the most popular scenic spot in Xining - Qinghai Lake. It is located about 130 kilometers west of Xining. We will start our tour after breakfast. As the largest saltwater lake in China, Qinghai Lake is famous for the beauty of its sapphire-like water, turquoise-like grassland and majestic snow-capped mountains. The picturesque views vary from season to season. Cruising is the ideal way to enjoy the landscape. Cruising down Qinghai Lake, you can catch a glimpse of the grand Mt. Sun and Moon along the way. After visiting the places, you will stay overnight at the lakeside to enjoy the stunning sunset and sunrise.

Stay overnight at the lakeside

In the morning, you will get back to Xining City after breakfast. Your tour guide will take you to the train station. Please fetch an actual paper ticket at the ticket hall by showing them your e-ticket, a copy of your Tibet Travel Permit, and your passport. Xining - Lhasa train takes about 22hrs covering a distance of 1960km.

You will spend the rest of the day on the train and enjoy the fabulous scenery along the highest railway in the world - Qinghai Tibet Railway. You will see the gorgeous natural scenery of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau such as nomadic pasture, sapphire lakes, flocks of goats and yaks, snow-capped mountains, etc.

Stay overnight on the train

Our local Tibetan guide will wait for you at Lhasa railway station by holding your name sign. You will be greeted with a warm Tashi Delek (a kind of blessing), and be presented with a white Hada (traditional Tibetan ceremonial by giving you a white scarf). Then transfer to the hotel in Lhasa city. On your first arrival day in Lhasa (3650m), it's essential to have a good rest to avoid Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS, also known as altitude sickness). Remember to drink lots of water, eat lighter and have high carbohydrate food which will be helpful to you to adapt to the high altitude better.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

In the morning our guide will meet you at the hotel and first 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's a museum and world heritage site. 

In the afternoon, we will go to visit Jokhang Temple in the center of the Lhasa old town. 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 - 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‘s also a must-see place for visitors.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

In the morning, we will visit Norbulingka, which 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.

In the afternoon, you are heading to Drepung Monastery, which means Monastery of Rice Heap in the Tibetan language. The entire monastery is large in scale and the white buildings cluster and cover the hillsides. Drepung monastery is the largest Tibetan Buddhist monastery, also the highest-ranking monastery in the Gelug Sect.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

After breakfast, transfer from Lhasa to Samye Monastery along the serene waters of the braided Yarlung Tsangpo meandering through a swathe of land flanked by sand dunes. After sightseeing, transfer to Tsetang, the fourth-largest city in Tibet.

Stay overnight in Tsetang

Visit the major sights of Yarlung Valley in Tsetang today, which is considered the cradle of Tibetan civilization. We will go to Trandruk Monastery in the early morning. It's also one of the earliest Monasteries in Tibet. The Pearl Thangka is the highlight of this visit. Then we will head to Yumbulagang Palace, which was the first palace in Tibetan history. The scale of the temple is small, but it's very spectacular as it's towering over the hill and condescending on the top.

It was from the Yarlung River Valley that the early Tibetan kings unified Tibet in the 7th century and the massive Tibetan King Burial Mounds still dominate the area around Chongye. 

Stay overnight in Tsetang

Today, lots of beautiful scenery will be seen on the way from Tsetang to Gyantse. Passing over Gampala Pass (4790m), you will have a glimpse of Yamdroktso Lake (4400m), from where you will have a spectacular view of Holy Mount Nyenchen Khangsar (7191m), the highest mountain near Lhasa. We head westward along Yamdroktso Lake to Karola Glacier, then drive towards Gyantse (3980m), a very pleasant town in Tibet, located in the Nyang-chu Valley. 

Stay overnight in Gyantse

In Gyantse, you will visit the famous Pelkor Monastery with Gyantse Kumbum and have a far view of Gyantse Fortress. Then traveling from Gyantse to Shigatse through the fertile Nyangchu Valley, you can see a wide agricultural plain where colorfully decorated yaks and horses are used by Tibetan farmers to till the land.

Stay overnight in Shigatse

Drive from Shigatse to Tingri via Sakya County where we will visit the famous Sakya Monastery. Stay the night in Tingri, the closest settlement to Everest Base Camp where guesthouses provide rooms with private bathrooms and hot showers. 

Stay overnight in Tingri

About 3km from the Friendship Highway, you get to the village of Chay. From Chay, it’s a winding drive up to Pang-la (5,050m). The view here is stupendous on a clear day and features major mountains of the Himalayan range, including Makalu, Lhotse, Everest, Gyachung and Cho Oyu. The road then descends past a couple of photogenic villages and runs down into the fertile Dzaka Valley and Tashi Dzom village. The dirt road then runs up the wide valley, to Pagsum village. The next main village is Cho Dzom and from here the road turns south towards Rongbuk Monastery. The first view of Mt.Everest appears half an hour before you reach Rongbuk. After sightseeing at Rongbuk and Everest Base Camp(5,200m), you will return to Tingri for the night.

Stay overnight in Tingri

Drive from Tingri to Shigatse today via G318, which covers a distance of 250km and takes about 4hrs. Please feel free to ask your driver to stop at any time if you want to take a photo of the fantastic view along the way. 

In the afternoon, you will visit Tashilhunpo Monastery - the home of Panchen Lama. It was founded by the 1st Dalai Lama in 1447 and is a historic and culturally important monastery in Shigatse.

Stay overnight in Shigatse

In the morning, we will visit the home of Panchen Lama - Tashilhunpo Monastery, which was founded by the 1st Dalai Lama in 1447. It is a historic and culturally important monastery in Shigatse. It's located on the central hill of the city. The full name in Tibetan of the monastery means "all fortune and happiness gathered here" or "heap of glory".

Then, we will drive back to Lhasa from Shigatse along the Friendship Highway, via the northern route to Lhasa. It is the most direct route and usually takes around 6 hours to reach the capital. We will make several stops on the way to enjoy the views of the Yarlung Tsangpo River Valley.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

On the way to Namtso, you will have a far view of the Nyenchen Thanglha Snow Mountain. Enjoy the view of the vast grassland and spectacular natural scenery. You'll arrive at Namtso Lake after passing Nagela Pass(5150m). Namtso Lake is one of the three most holy lakes in Tibet, also the third-largest salt lake in China and the highest lake in the world. The name Namtso means “lake from heaven” in the Tibetan language. And the gorgeous landscape is really like heaven.

In late afternoon, you will drive back to Lhasa.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

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.

Tour Price and Service

From US$2988 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;
  • Soft-sleepers from Xining to Lhasa;
  • 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)
  • Other domestic flights/trains 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 Tim ***

2 people, my wife (Japanese) and I (USA) ... we would like to take a train to Lhasa (best from Shanghai but other options considered). Can depart from the beginning of August 2020 up to the end of August 2020.

Answered by Cherry

We can open a new group tour to match your departure date for the early booking. Shanghai is a popular city to take a train to Lhasa. 

Asked by Eng ***

Hi I am quite keen on the 16 days Xining Tibet Everest Train Tour. I wonder is there any further trekking up from the Everest Base Camp can be arranged. I want to spend 1 or 2 days more there. I am flexible in my schedule.

Answered by Cherry

In your inquiry, you mentioned you would like to have the 16 Days Xining Tibet Everest Train Tour which is a private tour. Frankly speaking, it is a little expensive for solo travelers to have this private tour.

As travelers less than five, we also suggest they join our small group tour to keep the cost down. I suggest you take a train to Lhasa from Xining then join our 10 Days Lhasa Gyantse Shigatse Everest Namtso Group Tour. There is no group tour including trek at Everest Base Camp. 

We can also book the train ticket from Xining to Lhasa for you. I will quote for you after you confirm the itinerary. By the way, which hotel star do you prefer? Economy 3-star hotel or comfortable 4-star hotel

Asked by Susa***

What is the cost for this trip if I take it sometime in late July 2019

Answered by Cherry

In your inquiry, you mentioned you would like to have the Xining Tibet Everest Train Tour which is a private tour. As travelers less than five, we often suggest they join our small group tour to keep the cost down. I suggest you take a train to Tibet from Xining to join our 10 Days Lhasa Gyantse Shigatse Everest Namtso Group Tour. We have this group tour with the departure date on Aug.1st. Is it available to you?

I will quote for you after you confirm the itinerary. By the way, which hotel star do you prefer? Economy 3-star hotel or comfortable 4-star hotel.

Asked by John***

I like inquire about the total cost I would need to pay for this 16 day trip this October as originally plan.
Thank you,
Kind Regards Johnny.

Answered by Nance

In your inquiry, you mentioned that you are interested in our 16 days Xining Tibet Everest Train Tour, which is a private tour. Frankly speaking, the cost of a private tour for a solo traveler would be a little bit expensive. For people less than five, we usually suggest them join our small group tours to keep the cost down.

So how about we divide this tour into two parts? 3 days Xining private tour plus 10 days Lhasa Gyantse Shigatse Everest Namtso Group Tour

Asked by Jean***

The 16 day tour

Answered by Cherry

In your inquiry, you mentioned two of you would like to do the 17 Days Xining Tibet Everest Train Tour which is a private tour. As travelers less than five, we often suggest them to join our small group tour to keep the cost down. May I know when would you like to do this tour?

Here is the itinerary of 17 Days Xining Tibet Everest Train Tour.

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What Our Customers Say
Paro Dzong

As I return home from my Bhutan, Nepal and Tibet adventures, I owe you a very BIG “ THANK YOU “, for making it one if not the best trip ever! Your thorough planning, flawless execution and above all your willingness to respond to ALL of my questions is most appreciated. I must give a big compl ....

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