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10-Day Chengdu-Lhasa-Mt. Everest-Lhasa Tour by Flight

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Overview

Tour Type: Private Tour: Flexible Travel Date & Travel Routes
Guide & Driver: Chinese-English-speaking guide & air-conditioned
  • Visit the Chengdu Giant Panda Research Base & Breeding Center to get up close to these wonderful animals;
  • Experience the devoted atmosphere of pilgrimage to the Potala Palace and other saccred monasteries;
  • Embark on a memorable adventure to the top of the world, where you can watch the sun rise on the world’s highest mountain peak at Mount Everest.

Itinerary Day by Day

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Day1  Arrival in Chengdu
Ni hao and welcome to Chengdu, the hometown of the Giant Pandas! Whether you arrive by flight or by train, your local tour guide will meet you at the airport or train station and escort you by private vehicle to your downtown Chengdu hotel. The rest of the day will be free for you to explore on your own or stay In and rest up from your trip.

Recommended optional evening activity:
Enjoy an authentic dinner of the world-famous Sichuan cuisine at a local restaurant.

Accommodation:Overnight in Chengdu

chengdu panda

chengdu

Day2  Chengdu: Panda Base, Renmin Park, Jinli Street
Chengdu has three famous features as a major Chinese city – the Giant Pandas, its ancient history, and a leisurely pace of living. For the first day of your tour, we will get to experience all three of these features. First, we’ll visit the lovely Giant Pandas at the Chengdu Giant Panda Research Base & Breeding Center, which is the number one must-do thing in Chengdu. We will pick you up early in the morning from your hotel and drive about 30 minutes to the panda base to see giant pandas as they are being fed, playing with each other, climbing trees, etc. There are many different enclosures for pandas of different ages, from baby pandas to 1-year old pandas to teenage pandas and older. Beautiful tree-lined walking paths lead you from one enclosure to the next so it’s an enjoyable morning spending time with the pandas.

After meeting the pandas, we’ll visit the sacred Wenshu Temple, which is hidden in a peaceful location right in the middle of modern Chengdu. This temple is the most popular Buddhist temple in the Chengdu region. With its beautiful, traditional and ancient architecture, the atmosphere is very calm and quiet, with some people praying, right in the midst of a busy and modern urban city. The grounds have a small garden and the monastery is very colorfully decorated, making it a fascinating place to visit.

After the Wenshu Temple, we will experience the leisurely pace of the life of the locals at Renmin Park and Jinli Street. Renmin (People’s) Park is where the locals go for a relaxing walk, to meet friends or have a cup of tea. Jinli Street, by contrast, is a street mainly for tourists but it does offer a view of the way things were in ancient times. You can wander along this traditional old street to absorb the special atmosphere of Chengdu while tasting the local snacks, watching street performers, etc.

After visiting Jinli Street, we will take you back to your hotel to prepare for your flight to Lhasa tomorrow.

Recommended evening activity:
Watch a wonderful performance of the traditional Sichuan Opera at the Shufengyayun Opera House, including folk opera, face changing, fire spitting, and rolling lights performances and much more.

Accommodation:Overnight in Chengdu

chengdu panda

renmin park

Day3  Flight from Chengdu to Lhasa
After a nice breakfast at your hotel, we will escort you by private vehicle to the Chengdu airport for your flight to Lhasa. Upon arrival at the Lhasa Gonggar Airport, your local tour guide and driver will meet you to take you on to your hotel in downtown Lhasa. The rest of the day will be free for you to relax and acclimatize yourself to the higher altitude of the Tibetan Plateau.

Tips for High Altitude Acclimatization:
1) Go for a leisurely walk in the fresh high altitude air, but avoid any strenuous activity after your arrival.
2) It's better to avoid taking a bath to avoid catching a cold.
3) Drink plenty of water to avoid dehydration, and eat some fresh fruit.4) Get plenty of rest.

Accommodation:Overnight in Lhasa

tibet tour

tibet tour

Day4  Lhasa: Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street
Start your exploration of Lhasa today with a visit to a world-famous landmark - the Potala Palace, widely regarded as one of the most beautiful examples of architecture in the world. Climb up to the palace along zig-zagging stone paths alongside the white and red walls to the top of the palace where you can gain a greater appreciation of the exotic Tibetan-style buildings as well as for a great view of Lhasa's entire urban area. After admiring the sweeping outside views, explore the inner spaces of the Potala Palace to find the stately chapels and learn more about the fascinating history of this special place.

From one historic landmark to another, your next stop will be at the Jokhang Temple, considered as the spiritual heart of Tibetan Buddhism. Every day thousands of pilgrims come from all over Tibet and other places to the temple to worship the Buddha. The Jokhang Temple is also known as the "House of Buddha" because it houses the precious Jowo Rinpoche, a life-sized (1.5 meter/5 feet) image of the Shakyamuni at the age of 12.

The last stop for today's Lhasa exploration is Barkor Street, the wide, circular street that surrounds the Jokhang Temple. Local residents enjoy walking on the street, completing several circuits around the temple as a daily tradition of pilgrimage. The street also has many small shops selling a wide variety of traditional Tibetan goods, religious items and handicrafts.

Tips for today's tour:
1) There are 1,080 steps to the top of the Potala Palace, so it's best to take it slowly to avoid high altitude sickness.
2) Taking photos is not allowed inside the Potala Palace.
3) Most of today will be spent outside, so please bring a hat, sunscreen, sunglasses and some water with you to protect yourself from the more intense sun at the higher altitude.

Accommodation:Overnight in Lhasa

potala palace

barkhor street

Day5  Lhasa: Norbulingka Palace, Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery
After breakfast at your hotel, we will visit the beautiful Norbulingka Palace and Park, the location of the former summer palace of the Dalai Lamas from the 1780s up until 1959. It features the famous Potrang, the private palaces of former Dalai Lamas built in the grandiose style of traditional Tibetan architecture.

After visiting the palaces and park at Norbulingka, we will travel around 5 kilometers to the western outskirts of Lhasa to visit the Drepung Monastery. The word "drepung" in Tibetan language means "prosperity". Since its establishment in 1416, Drepung Monastery has served as one of the most important Buddhist monasteries in Tibet. During its prime, more than 10,000 monks lived and studied in the monastery. Throughout its history, many important and famous Tibetan leaders studied at this monastery, including the Dalai Lamas. Accordingly, Drepung Monastery is also respectfully known as the “Mother School of Dalai Lamas”.

In the afternoon, we will escort you on to another famous monastery in Lhasa - the Sera Monastery. Sera Monastery is famous for its spectacular “Buddhist Debates”. As a daily routine, the monks gather in a courtyard, and debate on the various Buddhist doctrines with exaggerated gestures, which is thought to be helpful in facilitating a better comprehension of the Buddhist philosophy to attain higher levels of study. After enjoying the "Buddhist Debates", we will take you back to your hotel with the rest of the day and evening to relax or explore on your own.

Tips for Proper Etiquette While Visiting Monasteries
1) For clothing, shorts and/or bare shoulders are not allowed.
2) Hats and sunglasses should be removed before entering the chapels.
3) Taking photos is usually not allowed inside the chapels.

Accommodation:Overnight in Lhasa

sera monastery

drepung monastery

Day6  Lhasa - Shigatse: Yamdrok Lake, Karuola Glacier, Kumbum Monastery
Today we will begin our exploration of the more rural areas of Tibet, with an 8-hour drive to Shigatse, the second largest city in Tibet. Although it is a long drive, it certainly won’t be a boring one – there is much to see and do along the way. The first stop en route from Lhasa to Shigatse will be the holy Yamdrok Lake (elevation 4400 meters). As the largest fresh water lake in the northern Himalayas, the lake reaches about 675 square kilometers from north to south, shaped much like a teardrop lying amidst the giant snow-capped mountains. Beyond the lake, you can see fertile pastures dotted with yaks and sheep along with small Tibetan villages along the shores of the lake. A little bit further on from Yamdrok Lake we will see the Karola Glacier (elevation 5045 meters) as it towers imposingly above the right side of the road.

Continuing on our journey, we will reach the historical city of Gyantse, where we will have a nice local lunch before visiting the mysterious Palcho Monastery (elevation 4040 meters). At this monastery, monks from three of the main sects of Tibetan Buddhism – Sakyapa, Zhalupa and Gelukpa peacefully live in harmony. The monastery’s Kumbum (multi-storied aggregate of Buddhist chapels) is 35 meters tall, consisting of 76 small chapels with hundreds of images of Kriyantantras, and it is believed to be the largest such structure in all of Tibet.

After visiting Gyantse, we will drive the remaining 3 hours on to Shigatse (elevation 3800 meters) and check into the hotel for an overnight stay.

Tips for today’s trip:
1) Wear warm clothing to protect against the wind and colder high altitude temperatures;
2) Bring food and drinks with you for the long road trip.

Accommodation:Overnight in Shigatse

yamdrok

gyantse karuola glacier

Day7  Shigatse - Tashilunpo Monastery - Rongphu Monastery
After breakfast, we will take you to see the officlal seat of the Panchen Lama – Tashilunpo Monastery. This important monastery is the largest and most influential Gelug Monastery in Shigatse Prefecture. It contains a giant statue of the Future Buddha, the largest one of its kind in the world, standing 26.2 meters tall and 11.5 meters wide and decorated with precious pearls, turquoise, coral and amber.

After our visit to Tashilunpo, we will travel on to our ultimate destination – Mount Everest. Although this is another long drive of 7 hours, the views along the route are absolutely incredible. On clear days you can see the faces of the mountains in the Himalyan range, including several famous peaks that reach more than 8,000 meters into the sky, such as Makalu, Lhotse, Gyachung and Cho Oyu. Once we reach the isolated Rongbuk Monastery (elevation 4980 meters) and get our first look at mighty Mount Everest, it’s a fantastic feeling that will make you realize that all of the effort that went into this long journey was not made in vain. Located about 5100 meters above sea level, Rongbuk Monastery is the highest monastery in the world. This is also the best location to take the best photos of the front face of Mount Everest. You will have the rest of this day free to visit the Rongbuk Monastery and explore the natural scenery of the surrounding area.

Accommodation:Overnight at Rongphu Guest House

shigatse tashilunpo monastery

rongphu monastery

Day8  Rongphu Monastery - Shigatse
This morning, wake up early to see the incredible sunrise as it shines upon the peak of the world. If we have stayed overnight at the Rongbuk Guesthouse, we’ll drive to the Tibetan Tent Camp (elevation 4900 meters) to enjoy a closer view of Mount Everest. Of course the peak of Mount Everest is covered by snow year-round, so when the sun shines on the peak it looks like a giant white pyramid. This is one of the most famous views of Mount Everest in photographs, and if the day is clear enough you will be able to witness it with your own eyes. On bright days you may also see a wisp of a cloud hanging just above the tip of Mount Everest, which flies eastward in the fast-moving westerly wind, creating an effect just like a flapping flag. This unique effect is known as the “Cloud Flag” and it is spectacular as it changes from surging waves into a thin wisp of smoke, or from something resembling galloping stallions into the mysterious veil of a goddess.

Accommodation:Overnight in Shigatse

rongphu monastery

rongphu monastery

Day9  Shigatse - Lhasa
After breakfast we will begin the long scenic drive back to Lhasa alongside the legendary Yaluzangbu River, often referred to as the Mother River of Tibet. Halfway back to Lhasa we will stop at the village of Nyemo Tunba, the home of Tunmi Sangbuzha, the inventor of the Tibetan language characters as well as the famous Tibetan incense. In Nyemo Tunba, surrounded by the fabulous scenery of ancient cypress trees, green willows and clear rivers, we will be able to witness the making of Tibetan incense at the local water mill – a fascinating process.

After experiencing the village life of Tunba, we will drive on back to Lhasa and check into our hotel to rest up after our long journey.

Accommodation:Overnight in Lhasa

lhasa river

lhasa river

Day10  Departure from Lhasa
Today you will have free time until we meet you in the lobby of your hotel to transfer you to the Lhasa airport or train station for your departing flight or train.

Today's Tips:
1) Please take care to pack all of your belongings, particularly the small things that are easy to forget about, such as phone and camera chargers, power adapters, mobile phones, wallets, etc.
2) If your flight or train is in the afternoon, please be sure to check out of your hotel room by 12 p.m.

Accommodation:None

lhasa airport

lhasa airport

What's Included

Private professional English-Speaking local tour guide
Licensed Vehicle with experienced driver
All necessary Tibet travel permits.
All accommodations listed in the itinerary
Meals specified in the itinerary as "B,L,D".
Entrance tickets listed in the itinerary
Tourists Accident/Casualty Insurance
A container of Oxygen for emergency use in Tibet
All taxes, fees and handling charges
Lodging and meal allowance to the guide & driver
2 bottles of drinking water per person per day
International flight to and from China.
China visa.
Sightseeing not listed in the itinerary.
Meals not listed in the itinerary.
Personal expenses such as laundry, drink, fax, telephone call, optional tour activities, etc.
Tips to guides, drivers, bellboys, etc.
Entrance tickets not listed in the itinerary
Single room supplement.

Additional Info

Alterations of Itineraries

The travel date, service items, itinerary and number of visitors, visitors’ ID information, etc. can be modified free of charge 30 days or more before the trip. If the visitor needs to make a second modification, an additional service fee of 5% of the deposit will be charged. Every time the content of the travel contract is modified, the company reserves the right to re-quote.

Cancellation Policy

Once the deposit is paid, your trip is confirmed. If you need to change or cancel your itinerary, please contact your travel consultant by email, phone, instant messenger, etc. There will be a charge for Cancellation or modification. The policy is as follows:

1. Notice of trip cancellation due to personal reasons before the trip starts
Cancellation 30 days or more before the trip starts, 10% penalty of the deposit.
Cancellation 29-15 days before the trip starts, 20% penalty of the deposit.
Cancellation 14-7 days before the trip starts, 30% penalty of the deposit.
Cancellation 6-2 days before the trip starts, 50% penalty of the deposit.
Cancellation within 48 hours prior to the trip starts, no refund of your deposit.

2. Trip cancellation due to irresistible factors before the trip starts

If you have to cancel the itinerary due to irresistible reasons such as traffic, weather, politics, etc., the deposit will be fully refunded by the company (for loss related to air ticket/train ticket, please take reference of the first item).

Reviews

 Dom B
Travel Date:January 5, 2019

My first and only group tour trip so far. What shall I say? Everything worked like a clockwork. My group mates where great and we had a lot of fun (and celebrated new year successfully). The travel agency (asia Odyssey travel) was definitely a good choice. The advises and caretaking I got from my agency (thanks amy, you are an angel ) was better then the one of my other group members (we talked about it openly). I'm lucky that I choose this trip, tour and agency. It was a good experience and I can definitely recommend it if you like a good and organized tour through tibet.

 changshu1999
Travel Date:August 11, 2019

The tour guide and diver are pretty kind and zealous! And all the stories the guide told are very attractive as well. Hope next time visiting there, they can entertain us again.

 bpagmbh
Travel Date:May 29, 2019

We were very impressed with the travel agency Aisa Odyssey Tour and our organizer Amy who arranged all details swiftly without any worries. We took the flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa and were told we need the group visas to board the flight to Lhasa from there, this agency helped us get both of our group visas and Tibet visas sucessfully before the tour began as we expected and smoothly arrived in Lhasa as planned, really apprecaited!

Tibet is great place we did not want to leave because it’s really fabulous, but of course the long drives across the Tibetan plains to Everest base camp and the fantastic blue skies everyday, we spent a wonderful 7 days trip in Tibet with help of Amy and saw some nice monasteries, lakes, mountains and friendly local Tibetans etc.

Overall, our tour guide is very knowledgeable with culture and history of Tibet and always satisfy us as best as she could, our driver is a good person too and was driving in a safe way everywhere. Tibet is such a beatiful place, hope me and my wife could have a chance to come back again someday to spend more time for visiting further place of Tibet like Kailash? I will contact this agency again then, thanks again for making my long-awaited dream came true!

 Chrisz
Travel Date:Sep. 21st 2018

It was the first time we went to Tibet. Too much things we need to arrange, itinerary, travel date, tickets, permit…We were lucky to have had Kay handle our plan. She was professional, efficient and dealt everything in order. Our trip went smoothly as planned. We visited Lhasa, yamdroke lake, Everest, the beauty of Tibet was beyond my expectation except the altitude sickness.

 DaisyPurple
Travel Date:September 18, 2019

We booked the tour with Asia Odyssey after surveying few tour companies as it’s the cheapest among those with excellent reviews. Amy was the agent that contacted us and keep updating of our Tibet visa applications and train tickets arrangement. She is really helpful. She even came to our hotel in Chengdu in order to pass the physical train ticket to us despite we were staying nearby airport, yet she did not ask for any tips or car fare from us. Upon arriving at Lhasa, Amy still cared for us if we have any altitude sickness. She provided all the information we needed to know and get us into contact with the tour guide in Lhasa as well. The tour is superb. We viewed the Mount Everest from far during sunset and sun rise. It’s a lifetime experience never to be missed. Also, the tour guide 大海哥 is very responsible and fun, he make our hectic journey a full of fun, yet with lots of information regarding the history of Lhasa, Monasteries, Potala Palace and many more...The driver is steady, his driving skill is superb The journey to EBC is super winding yet no one had any car sickness Upon leaving Lhasa, Amy still followed up with us and we thank her well.

 Travelprofi0
Travel Date:September 5, 2019

We are thankful so much again to our agency Asia Odyssey Travel and my dear Amy for the wonderful arrangement and make my trip to Mt Kailash trip possible, really apperiated! We did Kora around Mt.Kailash for 3 days in August as I had been looking forward this trip for quite a long time, even the second day of Kora are hardest to all of us because part of the roads are covered by snowing with long-distance walking and quite high altitude too, so we spent a lot of physical strength on this but it’s totally worth because the views along the way are very incredible, I think we may not have much chance or time to go there again.

Anyway, I really miss Tibet also my dear, hope we will come and see you one day again, many thanks again for all of your help!!!