Tibet Cultural Highlight Travel-Yarlung Valley Discovery
Tibet Lhasa and Yarlung valley culture odyssey tour: Travelers looking for a Tibet tour focused on culture, without sacrificing opportunities to see beautiful scenery, will want to spend most of their time in this region. Escape Lhasa to delve into the history of Yarlung Valley, cradle of Tibetan civilization and learn Tibetan Buddhism and special cultures.
Tibet Tsetang Culture Discovery outline
Day1fly or take train Lhasa, to be picked up,rest & acclimatization
Day2 Sightseeing in Lhasa: Potala, Jokhang, Barkhor
Day3 Sightseeing in Lhasa: Drepung & Sera Monastery (It's optional to see Sera and Norbulinka Palace)
Day4 Lhasa-Tsetang (Yarlung Valley Center)-Yambulagang Palace, o/n in Tsetang
Day5 Yarlung Valley tour of Samye Monastery, and Chimpu Hermitage-Tsetang
Day6 Tsetang-airport for final departure
Tibet Yarlung Cultural Cradle Discovery Trip details
Day 1 get to Lhasa, rest for acclimatization
Your Tibet native English speaking guide and the driver will meet you at Ghongkhar Airport or train station, and transfer you to downtown Lhasa, check into hotel, rest for acclimatization.
Day 2 Sightseeing tour in Lhasa
Morning visit: The first day sightseeing begins with Lhasa's cardinal landmark- Potala Palace, a structure of massive portions. Its towering image already appears on various occasions, but your first sight of the Potala will still be an awe-inspiring moment. It takes around 2-hours to visit those rooms, halls and chapels.
Afternoon visit Jokhang Temple: about 2km to the east of the Potala is the most revered religious structure in Tibet- Jokhang Temple. Bustling with worshippers and redolent with mystery, the tour in Jokhang is an unrivalled experience. The quadrangle of streets surrounding the Jokhang is the Barkhor -Lhasa's most interesting pilgrimage circuit. This area of the Old Town is both the spiritual heart of Lhasa and the main commercial district for Tibetans.
Day 3 Sightseeing tour in Lhasa (Drepung+Sera Monastery)
About 11 km to the west of Jokhang Temple is the Drepung Monastery, once world's largest monastery with about 10,000 monks. This day's sightseeing begins with these white monastic buildings piled up on the hillside. Walking up to the hill is a pleasant thing (every year on the main date of Shoton Festival, thousands of tourists and local people hike from the foot of the mountain to Drepung Monastery and the mountain opposite to Drepung to enjoy the buddha image representing activity), but never mind, beside Shoton Festival date, tourists can be transfered to the foot of the monastery directly as there is well paved road. At the plat roof of hillside, tourists can have very good view of the whole Lhasa city and the distant mountains.
Drepung is one of Lhasa's three great Gelugpa monasteries, the other two are Sera and Ganden Monastery. Just at the end of the North Sera Road, 5km north of Jokhang Temple, Sera Monastery may not be as grandiose as Drepung, but is more serene surrounded by many small temples. The 'Buddhism Scriptures Debating' in Sera is very famous.
Please be aware of that above sightseeing programs in Lhasa are flexible except for Potala visit the entry time for which can be known only around half day beforehand.
Expert travel tip: Today, we could visit Norbulinka Palace or Drak Yerpa Hermitage instead of Drepung Monastery. Just talk with your travel advisor to customize the trip according to your own interests.
Day 4 Lhasa-Tsetang (Yumbulagang Palace-Tramdruk Monastery)-O/n in Guesthouse beside Samye Monastery
Tsetang, in the center of the Yarlung valley between the Himalayan and Gangdise belts, is one of the largest cities in Tibet. Tsetang is 183 km southeast of Lhasa in Nedong County of Lhoka Prefecture, Tibet Autonomous Region of China (TAR). Tsetang has been the capital of Yarlung since ancient times and it was the seat of the ancient emperors of Tibet thus it played a big role in the history. In the 19th century it is said to have some 1,000 houses, a bazaar, a gompa and a fort. This tells why Tsetang is regarded as the cradle of Tibetan civilization. After applying alien’s travel permit in PSB (Public Security Bureau) in Tsetang, we will ride horse or hike up to visit the oldest Palace-The Yumbulagang Palace (on the roof top of the Palace, we will have stunning view to the farmland in the Yarlung valley. Then we will drive to visit Tramdruk Monastery which takes about 1 hour and 30min, finally we will drive to stay in Samye, guesthouse nearby the Samye Monastery.
Day5 Samye-Chimpu Hermitage-Yarlung Valley Cultural Discovery tour-Tsetang
Tourists travelling in Tsetang region can take visit to Samye Monastery which is on the bank of Yarlung River. After early breakfast, we will spend about one and half hours to visit Samye Monastery, then we leave for the hiking trip in Chimpu Hermitage. One of the highlights for visiting Tsetang is that tourists can have some unique hiking experience. With a beautiful hiking through the green bushes in the natural amphitheatre valley, from the newly constructed Chimpu nunnery, tourists can start a short hiking through the solitary caves and tiny trail through the thorn bushes, then they can interact with devoted Yogis or Meditative Retreats in their caves, up from the terrace it offers a spectacular view of the Brahmaputra valley below. Special travel tip: foreign tourists may not be allowed to visit Chimpu Hermitage according to local travel regulations. This is subject to change. Anyway tourists must obey the local instant rules which is beyond any agents or individuals. In this case, tourists can do the hiking in Hepori Mountain which is close to Samye Monastery.
Day 6 Tsetang-airport for final departure
Tourists may have few hours in Tsetang for leisure time before leaving for airport. It is about 98 km from Tsetang to airport and it takes 1 hour and a half to drive to Gonggar Airport.