This 8-day trip from Beijing to Tibet is the ideal tour for first-time visitors to China, and brings you to the two major capitals of this vast nation. From the sights of the Mutianyu Great Wall and the wonders inside the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace, your wonderful trip takes you further to Lhasa and explore the heights of the palace on the Red Hill. Expect to walk around the pilgrim’s kora of the ancient Jokhang Temple, pray at the statue of the Jowo Rinpoche, and listen to the philosophical and theological arguments of the monastic debates. Also shop on the most popular street in Tibet, and visit the first home of the Dalai Lama.
- Stand atop the Great Wall of China outside Beijing and see the vast land it once protected.
- Stand inside the Forbidden City, no longer a death sentence, and visit the beauty of the Summer Palace.
- Pray in front of the oldest known statue of Buddha in the most sacred temple in Tibet.
- Learn to reason with meaning at the monastic debates of the famous Sera Monastery.
Day 1: Arrival Beijing, please go to our reserved hotel by taxi by yourself
When international flight lands in Beijing, please take a taxi by yourself to our reserved hotel. The rest of the day free for you to be on your own.
Overnight in Beijing.
Day 2: Beijing - Day tour to Mutianyu Great Wall
The Great Wall tour proves that China was one of the strongest countries in its history. Stretching thousands of kilometers, the Great Wall protected the ancient Chinese against the invasion of the enemy from its north side for more than 1000 years. The Great Wall was listed as one of the world's eight wonders. Mutianyu Great Wall, featured “graceful”, enjoy the best quality among all Wall sections, 80km north-east of Beijing with 22 ancient watchtowers, about one every kilometer. (Cable car is optional if you do not want to walk)
Overnight in Beijing.
Day 3: Beijing - Day tour to explore ancient Beijing, visit Forbidden City, Imperial Ancestral Temple, Beihai Park
Today, you will first visit the world-famous Forbidden City which once served as the imperial palace from the Ming dynasty to the end of the Qing dynasty. It is the most complete imperial palace in China. Then, you will leave for the Imperial Ancestral Temple. It was a place where sacrificial ceremonies in honor of the imperial family’s ancestors were held.
After that, you will tour Beihai Park. Beihai Park also known as the Winter Palace, is a public park and former imperial garden located in the northwestern part of the Beijing.
Overnight in Beijing.
Day 4: Beijing - Day tour to roam around Hutong- Nanluoguxiang and do some shopping
Hutong is the small ancient alley formed by traditional courtyard residences (Siheyuan). Nanluoguxiang is one of the most famous Hutongs in Beijing. There are a larger number of snack bars and artifact stores in the Nanluoguxiang. Strolling along the Nanluoguxiang, it is a feast for your eyes, mouth, and spirit.
After visit Hutong, you can do some shopping freely in Beijing and prepare for your tomorrow Beijing Tibet flight journey.
Overnight in Beijing.
Day 5: Fly to Lhasa from Beijing
Please take a taxi by yourself to from hotel to Beijing airport to board the flight to Lhasa, when check-in and pass by the security, you need show the original Tibet Travel Permit to the airport.
Flying from Beijing to Lhasa, you will fly from China's low-altitude inland into the high-altitude Qinghai-Tibet Plateau, you can watch the plains, canyons, forests, glaciers evolved into the snow-capped mountains from the aircraft. Tour guide will pick you up at Lhasa Gonggar airport and you will be transferred to hotel in Lhasa by Tibet Vista shuttle bus.
Overnight in Lhasa.
Day 6: Lhasa City Tour - Potala Palace, Barkhor Street and Jokhang Temple
The tour will begin from UNESCO World Heritage site - Potala Palace, which is also the winter palace of Dalai Lama. It's situated at 12,139 feet above sea level. It's a 13-story high building that contains over 1,000 rooms, various statues, stupas, murals and artifacts. Then continue to Jokhang Temple, another UNESCO World Heritage site. It’s a spiritual center for Buddhists in Tibet. Next to the temple there is Barkhor Street, filled with pilgrims and street vendors, selling traditional Tibetan items such as prayer wheels and jewelry.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 7: Lhasa Day Tour to Visit Two Important Monasteries in Lhasa, Sera & Drepung
In the morning, tourists are going to visit Drepung Monastery which was one of the “three greet” Gelug monasteries of Tibet and was founded in 1416. Ganden palace is used as Dalai Lama’s palace in the Drepung before moving to the Potala palace. In the afternoon, Sera Monastery---It was one of the “three great” Gelug monasteries of Tibet and was founded in 1419. The highlight is the Monks debate at around 3 - 5 in the afternoon.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Day 8: Departure from Lhasa
Our guide will transfer you to the airport or train station and help you get on board.
1.Tibet Entry Permit
2. Comfortable, clean and safe vehicle depending on your group size with reliable local driver;
3. Admission fees of tourist sites listed in the itinerary;
4. Professional English speaking tour guide;
5. Accommodations depend on your preference. Please tell us your preferred accommodation class when submitting the enquiry, and we will arrange the best-value hotels for you.
6.All measl listed in the itinerary;
7.Tourist Accident/Casualty Insurance
What’s not included?
1. International flight to and out of China;
2. Chinese Visa
3. Domestic flight / train not listed in the itinerary (If you need ticket booking service, please leave your requirements in the Online Inruiry form.)
4.Meals not specified in the itinerary;
5.Tips to driver and tour guide, Tip as you wish
6.Personal expenses, such as laundry, phone call, optional tour activities and so on.
1. Tibet Travel Permit
Tibet Travel Permit is a must for Tibet tour. Its cost is included in the tour quotation. Send your passport and China visa copies to us 20 days in advance, and we will apply for the permit after you book a Tibetan tour with us. Shortly after we get your permit from Tibet Tourism Bureau, we will inform you and mail it to your hotel in China via express.
In some extreme cases, our staff will hand it over to you at the airport or railway station. In our experience, we can virtually guarantee to get your permit during times when Tibet is open to foreign travelers.
Tibet is never known for its 5-star luxury resorts, though you can find some like Intercontinental Lhasa Paradise, St.Regis Lhasa Resort, Sheraton hotel, etc in Lhasa. Overall, the accommodation facilities and services are not as good as those in coastal and central parts of China. However, from cheap and clean youth hotel, to distinct Tibetan style 3-star and international 5-star luxury hotel, you will find one that suits your interest and pocket in Lhasa.
We’ve handpicked cozy and safe hotels in the central area of Lhasa, where you will find Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street are just steps away from you. You can easily experience more of the local life and culture. Normally, as you travel to remote areas in some parts of Shigatse like Tingri, or EBC, Ngari, Nagqu, etc. the accommodation would be much poorer. Some may have air-conditioning in the hotel;others may only have electric blanket in the guesthouses. And the food is also very basic.
3.Guiding and Tipping
Our English-speaking guides are natives of Tibet with good knowledge of Tibetan culture, history, and Buddhism. Most are trained to offer Western-standard service. Throughout your stay in Tibet, we will minor your health and provide prompt help to you. If you run into any trouble, please do not hesitate to reach them or our customer service manager.
Travelers’s tipping to Tibetan guide and driver is taken as an extra gratitude to their good service, just like what you do in the west. Normally, a tipping of 7 USD/day is acceptable. The basic rule is good service for good pay.
Admittedly, to many western tourists, using toilets in Tibet is the most dreadful experience. So, please down play your expectation. If you take Tibet train to Lhasa, both western toilet and squat toilet are available in the train. If you stay in hotel above 3-star hotels in Lhasa, Shigatse, etc. you will have no complaining using standard western flash toilet.
However, if you visit some of the attractions like Yamdrok or Namtso, EBC outdoor, mostly you will see the smelly and filthy pit toilet.It's better to carry enough toilet paper.
5. Tibet Weather
One of the biggest features of weather on Qinghai-Tibet Plateau is the dramatic temperature change between day and night. The annual temperature in Lhasa is -2℃-- 12℃(spring), 9℃-- 22℃(summer), 7℃-- 19℃(fall), -7℃-- 9℃(winter). Do wear clothes properly such as thermal tops, fleece jacket, breathable underwear, down jacket, jeans, beanie, etc.
Of course, sun screen, lip balm, sun glasses are essential to shield you from powerful blinding sunlight on the plateau. Do drink more water and eat more vegetable as you travel in Tibet. It can prevent you from dehydration.
6. Acclimatization to the High Altitude
For the first timer to Tibet, either by flight or train, a good rest is a must for quick acclimation to the high altitude in Lhasa. Never rush to tour the street or attractions on your own. Walk slower and do not exert yourself like running or jumping. Spending at least two days in Lhasa is a good way to get acclimatized before heading to Shigatse or Namtso. If you have any discomfort, do tell it to your guide,and he will help you out.
7. Other Dos and Don'ts
Normally, taking photos is forbidden in the monastery. If you want to take photos of Tibetan pilgrims, a gentle ask of permission would be appreciated or you can do it from a long distance. Swimming and fishing are not allowed in holy lakes in Tibet; Do not talk about sensitive topics like politics; International tourists are not allowed to travel alone in Tibet according to the policy; Walk clockwise around Barkhor Street; Never venture into the unknown trails; do as much as you can to protect the fragile eco-system in Tibet, etc.
As Tibetan Buddhism is deeply-rooted in every facet of Tibetans' life, always follow and respect the unique customs in Tibet. If you are uncertain about something, it’s advisable to ask your guide before you do it at will.