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21 Days Epic Shanghai Tibet Nepal Scenic Tour

Tour Route: Shanghai - Lhasa - Namtso - Gyantse - Shigatse - Tingri - Rongbuk - Gyirong - Kathmandu-Pokhara-Chitwan-Lumbini-Kathmandu

Trip Overview:

If you are seeking for an adventure across China, Tibet and Nepal, then this 21-day Shanghai Tibet Nepal tour could probably be your choice. Starting from the coastal international metropolis, the tour will first take you visit the economic center of China, and travel to the surrounding ancient town of Shanghai. Then take a flight to Lhasa, you will visit Lhasa city, Namtso Lake and move westwards to Kathmandu via Gyirong Border. As you travel overland from Lhasa to Kathmandu, the tour will also bring you many must-sees in Tibet, including the holy Mount Everest. While in Nepal, you will go on to explore the charming Kathmandu valley, Pokhara city, Chitwan National Park and the birthplace of Lord Buddha, Lumbini. Absolutely a spiritual and natural journey you deserve!  

  • Tour Code:
    TTO-PT-CTN21
  • Max Altitude:
    5200 m
  • Tour Type:
    Private tour with private guide and vehicle
  • Phisycal Demand:

    Phisycal Demand Level Guide:
    1. Easy (1 point) - suitable for all level of fitness, family with kids and senior groups.
    2. Moderate (2-3 Points) - suitable for those having average level for fitness, family with kids bigger than 12 years.
    3. Moderate to Strenous (4 Points) - suitable for those physically fit and have experiences of high altitude trekking.
    4. Strenuous (5 Points) - suitable for adventures and individual with physically fit and healthy.

  • Season:
    springSpringSummerSummerautumnAutumnwinterWinter

Highlights:

  • Enjoy the modern charm of international city, Shanghai.
  • Visit picturesque Zhujiajiao Ancient Town, known as the "Venice of China"
  • Discover Lhasa city with all its best, including the Potala Palace, the Jokhang Temple and the Barkhor Street.
  • Lhasa to Kathmandu overland tour via EBC.
  • Reach to the Everest Base Camp to enjoy the marvelous view of the top of the world.
  • Visit the world-heritage Buddhist temples and architectures in Kathmandu valley.
  • Experience Safari activities Chitwan National Park and see many amazing creatures there.
  • Make a pilgrimage to Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Shanghai

As you arrive in Shanghai, the megacity and financial hub of China, our local guide will be expecting you at the Shanghai Pudong International Airport. Later, the guide will escort you to your hotel. After you check in, the rest of the day is for you to have a good rest or explore the surroundings yourself.

Stay overnight in Shanghai

Day 2: Shanghai Tour: Shanghai Museum, Yu Garden, and Oriental Pearl TV Tower, the Bund

Today we are about to visit some of the highlights of Shanghai Tour. Starting with fascinating Shanghai Museum, the magnificent 4-story building houses an incredible collection of bronzes, sculptures, ceramics, coins, paintings, calligraphy, costumes and other exhibits in different dynasties. It’s the perfect place for fans of Chinese history and art.

Next comes the Yu Garden. Built in the 16th century during the Ming Dynasty, the Yu Garden used to be the private residence of a senior Government administrator in the Ming Dynasty. For passionate photographer, never miss the chance to photograph Old Street of Yu Garden.

In the evening, we will visit the most iconic building of Shanghai, i.e. Oriental Pearl TV Tower. You can enjoy the amazing panorama of the skyline of Shanghai at night. And as you stroll along the Bund, you will get amazed at the spectacular Huangpu River and dazzling light from buildings of Pudong.

Stay overnight in Shanghai

Day 3: Shanghai Tour: Zhujiajiao Ancient Town

In the morning, we are expected to visit picturesque Zhujiajiao Ancient Town, also known as the "Venice of China". It’s about 1 hour drive from downtown Shanghai. The ancient town dates back to Ming Dynasty. It’s highly recommended to enjoy the boat ride from one end of the water way to the other. Ke Zhi Garden and multiple shops and bridges, and street vendors selling handicrafts and goldfish and turtles provide a respite from boisterous metropolitan city.

Then, later we will get back to hotel and the rest of day is for free exploration. You may do some shopping around and have a good rest.

Stay overnight in Shanghai

Day 4: Fly from Shanghai to Lhasa

Take the early morning flight from Shanghai to Lhasa via Xi’an. After long hours of flight, you will land in Lhasa Gonggar airport in Shannan prefecture in the afternoon. And the guide will be expecting you at the airport and later you will be greeted and get transferred to hotels in Lhasa. Then, you can have a good rest to acclimatize to the high altitude.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 5: Day tour to visit Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street

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.

Day 6: 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.

Day 7: Lhasa to Namtso Lake 220 km (4200m)

In the early morning we will begin our long journey from Lhasa to Namtso. You will see enjoy the NyenchenTanggula Mountain Range and see Nomads in flourishing grassland (in Summer); Besides, on the way you can appreciate the view of Sky-Road Railway with snow mountain background. As we reach the famous Lagenla Mountain Pass (5190m), you can enjoy the awe-inspiring vista of Namtso Lake from above. After we arrived at the lake shore, you will enjoy the leisure trek around Tashi Island and enjoy sunset there. At night, you may enjoy night view of the milky way beside the Lake shore.

Stay overnight at Tent Guesthouse of Namtso

Day 8: Namtso to Lhasa 220 km

In the morning, never miss the stunning sunrise view of the Namtso Lake. Then we will head back to Lhasa.

Overnight in Lhasa

Day 9: Lhasa (3650m) to Shigatse (3900m) via Gyantse

In the morning, drive from Lhasa to Shigatse. On the way, drive over the Gampala pass (4790 m), and tourists will have a glimpse of Yamdrok-tso (4400m). The Lake is surrounded by many snow-capped mountains and in the distance clients can have spectacular views of Holy Mount NyenchenKhangsar, (7191m) the highest mountain near Lhasa. Gyantse was historically Tibet's third largest city (after Lhasa and Shigatse).In Gyantse, tourists will visit the famous Pelkor Monastery and Gyantse Kumbum. After one and a half driving, we arrive in Shigatse, which is the second largest city in Tibet.

Day 10: Shigatse to Rongbuk Monastery

Today we have an early start to drive westwards the Friendship way to Rongbuk. On the road the drive is full of magnificent scenery and cross some extremely high passes including Gyatsola (5248m). The road to Everest diverts off the newly paved Friendship highway near the town of Shegar and turns into bumpy gravel trail, which is still 90km to get to Rongpuk.

If it is in clear weather, you can have a glimpse of 4 mountains which is 8000m high or more, such as: Mt. Lhotse(8516m), Mt.Everest(8848m), Mt.Qowowuyag(8201m), Mt.Mayalu(8463m).

Day 11: EBC to Gyirong Town

In the morning, if the weather is good, tourists can see the sun rise on the top of Mt Everest, after visiting the base camp, drive to Tongla pass to see the panoramic view of Himalaya mountain range. Then driving down to Kyilong, where is surrounded by forest with ice-capped mountain background. The altitude is 2600m at the border.

Day 12: Gyirong to Kathmandu via Gyirong Border

Tour Guide will assist the clients to exit China. And see clients off at Gyirong border. After you enter the Nepal territory, our Nepali guide will be expecting you on the Nepali-side border and transfer you to the hotel in Kathmandu. The distance between Kathmandu and Sino-Nepal border is around 130km. And the entire ride takes around 7-8 hours. On the way, you will enjoy cliff-side Nepali villages and terraced farmland and vibrant vegetation, etc.

Stay overnight in Kathmandu

Day 13: Day Tour in Kathmandu: Durbar Square, Swayambhunath, Patan City

Kathmandu’s Durbar Square is one of three durbar (royal palace) squares in the Kathmandu Valley. It is the site of the Hanuman Dhoka Palace Complex, which was the royal Nepalese residence until the 19th century and where important ceremonies taken place. Swayambhunath the golden spire of the 5th-century Swayambhu stupa is adorned with a colorful fluttering of prayer flags; it crowns a hill overlooking the Kathmandu Valley and offers fantastic views over the city of Kathmandu. the last site we visit for today is Patan City which is the second largest town in Kathmandu valley.

Patan's central Durbar Square is entitled in the World Heritage Site and absolutely packed with temples, the Golden Temple which is the unique Buddhist Monastery was founded in the 12th century, is a large rectangular building has three roofs and a copper gilded facade with the images of Buddha and Avalokitesvara where there are Buddha images and illustrations on the walls.

Stay overnight in Kathmandu

Day 14: Drive from Kathmandu to Pokhara (200km)

Today you will drive to Pokhara, one of the most popular tourist destinations 200 kilometers away from Kathmandu. The road trip will take 5 to 6 hours. Upon arrival, you can take a leisurely walk around or have a good rest in your hotel.

Stay overnight in Pokhara

Day 15: 15

After breakfast, we depart for Pokhara and commence a full day sightseeing of Pokhara, the most popular destination in Nepal after Kathmandu. Spending enjoyably morning trip along the bank of Phewa Lake, you can admire the stunning view of the Fish Tail's Peak reflected in the silver surface of the water. You can also see the wonderful Annapurna panorama forming a superb backdrop to Pokhara from the lake.

Aside from Phewa Lake, we keep visiting the Seti River Gorge - one of the best places to see. You will have an opportunity to take a glimpse to the limestone cave of Mahendra Gufa, used to be well-known for its stalactites.

Stay overnight in Pokhara

Day 16: 16

After breakfast, we travel overland from Pokhara to Royal Chitwan National Park. We experience you a lots of Safari activities; jungle walks, canoeing, 4WD safaris and so forth. Once the night falls, we entertain you with cultural performances including bonfire before getting in bed.

Stay overnight in Chitwan

Day 17: A Full Day Chitwan Sightseeing

After breakfast, you will get a full day safari activities in Royal Chitwan National Park - if you are lucky, you will see many amazing creatures that you spend most time to looking for, such as rhinoceroses, Chitwan's royal Bengal tigers, leopards, monkeys, many types of deer and reptiles. Check your camera gear, preferably with a telephoto lens and you will not miss any shots.

Stay overnight in Chitwan

Day 18: Tilaurkot Sightseeing

After breakfast, we begin the trip by driving away 27km west of Lumbini to visit the important archaeological site, Tilaurkot, the ancient palace of King Suddodha (Siddhartha Gautam's father), where the Buddha spent his formative years as a Shakya Prince. Allow yourself for a moment to wander around and soak the atmosphere. There's a museum nearby, The Kapilvastu Museum; the pottery, jewelry and ornaments are gathered in-house.

End up the remarkable tour in Tilaurkot by visiting the shrines, monasteries and stupa near the sacred garden.

Stay overnight in Lumbini

Day 19: Drive from Chitwan to Lumbini and Go Sightseeing

After breakfast, we travel overland from Chitwan to the Lumbini, the birthplace of Lord Buddha, where has been revered as the place of holy pilgrimage. Lumbini has been included as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO - if the time permits, we take you to visit Manakamana Temple, believed as the wish fulfilling goddess by cable car.

Upon arrival Lumbini, we transfer you to the hotel, check-in and then we go walking through the Sacred Lumbini Garden where the Buddha was born converges on the Ashoka pillar, visit the Maya Devi Temple with its bas-relief sculpture depicting Maya Devi holding on with her right hand to a branch of pipal tree and giving birth to the infant Buddha who stand up on a lotus pedestal.

Stay overnight in Lumbini

Day 20: Return to Kathmandu from Lumbini

After breakfast, we leave Lumbini by road and back to Kathmandu. Check-in at hotel, rest of the day is at your own leisure.

Stay overnight in Kathmandu

Day 21: Depart from Kathmandu

After breakfast, the rest of day is at leisure until we pick you up at the hotel and then transfer to airport for your next stop.

What’s included?

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.

Trip Notes:

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.

2. Accommodation

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.

4. Toilet

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.

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