This short tour of Nepal and Tibet takes you deep into the heart of centuries-old capital cities, set on the roof of the world! Cradled within the tallest mountain ranges in the world, Kathmandu and Lhasa are cities of contrast, offering breathtaking beauty, spiritual sanctuary and the restless bustle of maze-like brick-laden streets meandering around stunning UNESCO World Heritage sites. Discover heritage haunts, revered pilgrimage spots and glittering high-altitude lakes, break bread with locals, and witness ritual ceremonies that will sooth your soul.
Kathmandu is a Himalayan valley kingdom, cradled within the foothills of mighty peaks.
Durbar Square & Thamel Visit By Rickshaw Explore Durbar Square, a durbar (court) of royalty, history and arts! Explore the house of the living goddess, or learn about the home of a red monkey god at Kal Bhairam Temple, decorated with its hundreds of erotic wood carvings. Kathmandu’s charm is best seen with an evening rickshaw ride that features silhouetted temples as the sun goes down. Embrace the colorful buzzing bazaars and market squares of Thamel that you can further explore by foot and venture into the lively nightlife.
Discover The Heritage Haunts Of Kathmandu Discover the deeply spiritual heart of Nepal on this day tour of the key Hindu and Buddhist temples in Kathmandu. Begin your tour at Pashupatinath, an immensely revered pilgrimage site built in the design of a Buddhist pagoda. At the Swayambhunath Temple, its your turn to spin the sacred prayer wheels that encircle its huge circular base, each embossed with Buddhist mantras. Admire the traditional Buddhist artwork placed within the shrine (chaitya) and afterwards, attend a prayer session by Buddhist monks. Afterwards, travel to the ancient Boudhanath Stupa, one of the oldest and largest Buddhist stupas in Nepal. Admire its graceful architectural lines and watch Tibetan pilgrims circle the Stupa as part of their prayer rituals. You can light a traditional butter lamp and offer your prayers, if you wish. (Full Day; Time of Day: Morning & Afternoon; Fitness Level: Easy; Please be suitably attired for visiting temples. Footwear and leather items are not usually allowed inside the Pashupatinath Temple. Please bring comfortable walking shoes).
Patan & Bhaktapur Visit Nepal’s capital Kathmandu combines with Patan, the city of fine arts, and Bhaktapur, the city of devotees, to form the historic, artistic and cultural Kathmandu Valley. Explore Patan’s Hindu temples and Buddhist architecture! Considered Nepal’s cultural gem with its well-preserved pagodas, palaces and temples, regal Bhaktapur is surrounded by the mighty mountains of the Himalayas and boasts amazing views. It was also a stopping point for the ancient trade route between India and Tibet.
A Taste Of Traditional Nepal At Bhaktapur Always wanted to know more about the secluded mountain kingdom? Here’s your chance. Visit a local Nepalese home to learn more about the local culture and daily life at the town of Bhaktapur. Savor the feeling of a home away from home as you are graciously welcomed into the lives of traditional Nepali people through a tour that will explain the mysteries of the Nepali lifestyle. Guests in Nepal are akin to God and you will have the chance to savor some traditional homemade delicacies, including fried fish, special curries, and boiled and fried eggs that are served with rakshi (homemade spirit).
The center of the Tibetan Buddhist world for over a millennium, Lhasa (‘Place of the Gods’) remains largely a city of our mystical imagination. The Potala Palace soaring above the city and the whitewashed old Tibetan quarter still preserves a bit of traditional Tibet.
Drepung Monastery And Sera Monastery Tour Experience the otherworldly life of Tibetan monks! The Drepung and Sera Monasteries are two of the three great universities to follow the Gelug or Yellow Hat school of Tibetan Buddhism that the Dalai Lama belongs to. Many believe the Drepung Monastery to be named after a famous Indian Stupa where the Buddha taught the Kalachakra Tantra. Admire historical relics, Buddhist scriptures and beautiful stone art and paintings around this monastery. The Drepung was home to the early Dalai Lamas until the 17th century when the fifth Dalai Lama built the new Potala Palace. On your trip back, visit a traditional Tibetan home and share a delicious meal of the region’s ubiquitous meat-filled dumplings. After lunch, head to one of Tibet’s best-preserved monasteries – the Sera Monastery. A much later addition in the 15th century, the Sera was rebuilt by the Chinese government after the Cultural Revolution of the late 1960s. It now serves as a functional monastery famous for heated debates on Buddhist philosophy among resident monks! (Full Day, Private Activity & Transfers; Meal included: Tibetan dumplings; Fitness Level: Easy; Please bring comfortable walking shoes.)
Highlights Of Lhasa Soak yourself in the mysticism that defines Lhasa! Marvel at the impressive Potala Palace set atop Marpo Ri hill which was built by the fifth Dalai Lama in the 17th century. Surrounded by 7th century architectural marvels that form a part of the complex today, this World Heritage site is at the very heart of Tibetan cultural heritage. Visit the ancient Jokhang Temple right in the center of Old Lhasa, an exquisite amalgam of ancient Indian, Tibetan and Nepalese design and architectural elements. Direct your steps towards the more than 200 year old UNESCO World Heritage site of Norbulingka or ‘jeweled garden’ – an ideal example of Tibetan palace architecture. Set amid lush gardens, this summer palace of the Dalai Lama also served as a religious and administrative center. Spend your evening ambling around the streets of the bustling Barkhor Bazaar as locals go about their daily lives amid shops laden with jewelry, artifacts, masks and other souvenirs. (Full Day, Time of Day: Morning; Private Activity & Transfers; Fitness Level: Easy; Please bring comfortable walking shoes. Please note that climbing the steps of the Potala Palace can be tiring due to the thin level of oxygen.)
Himalayan Pilgrimage To Green Jade Lake (Yamdrok-Tso Lake) Take in the spectacular view of the Yamdrok-Tso or the Green Jade Lake from atop the Gampala pass. Drive out from Lhasa in the morning to the pass high up in the Himalayas to catch a glimpse of one of Tibet’s holiest lakes. The sprawling lake gets its name, Green Jade, from its impossibly turquoise shade and calm waters. Drink in the otherworldly beauty of the landscape stretched out before you, with the lake’s many islands, bays and inlets fanning out from its aquamarine depths. Now imagine all this jewel-toned magnificence standing in the shadows of snow-capped Himalayan peaks. You can even spot Nyenchen Khangsar, one the highest mountains in Tibet, right here from the lake’s shores. Enjoy the peaceful tranquility of your surroundings, hemmed in by the rich pastureland of local herdsmen. Watch Tibetan pilgrims perform their holy rituals along the sacred Yamdrok-Tso, and drive back to Lhasa in the afternoon. (Full Day Trip, Morning Activity; Private Activity & Transfer; Fitness Level: Easy; Please bring comfortable walking shoes.)
Prices are in USD and exclude international flights. This trip price is based on low season rates for accommodation and other applicable services, and may change depending on availability, currency fluctuations and number of people traveling together. For high season prices, please contact us with your exact travel dates and preferences.
Accommodation (on a twin-sharing basis) on the indicated meal plan for 8 nights.
Economy flights for all sectors : Kathmandu – Lhasa (Flight), Lhasa – Kathmandu (Flight)
All activities as listed :
Kathmandu: Durbar Square & Thamel Visit by Rickshaw
Kathmandu: Discover the Heritage Haunts of Kathmandu
Kathmandu: A Taste of Traditional Nepal at Bhaktapur
Kathmandu: Patan & Bhaktapur Visit
: Highlights of Lhasa
: Himalayan Pilgrimage to Green Jade Lake (Yamdrok-Tso Lake )
: Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery Tour
All airport and hotel transfers
A high-quality air conditioned vehicle with unlimited mileage and a trusted chauffeur throughout your trip, apart from during your stay at a beach/backwater resort or houseboat if applicable.
All activities described in the itinerary, including entrance fees wherever applicable, accompanied by our tour guide
Your Trip Coordinator: a 24/7 point of contact, supporting you during your trip
Welcome kit including all important documents and information regarding your itinerary
Fees and taxes
English speaking accompanying guide in Bhutan
All government and royalty taxes in Bhutan
Organization and fees for your visa to Bhutan & China/Tibet