Explore Potala Palace – a place no less spectacular when seen up close
Witness monks engaging in lively (and noisy!) debates at Sera Monastery in Lhasa
Enjoy the beautiful drive to Yamdrok Lake
Visit temples and monasteries in Gyantse and Shigatse
See Jokhang Temple, the most venerated religious site in Tibet
Curated by Nikki
Day 1 Arrival Lhasa
Upon arrival in Lhasa you’ll be met at the airport by a representative and transferred by private car to the St Regis Lhasa.
You’ll have the rest of the day at leisure to relax and acclimatise. Lhasa sits at an altitude of over 3,400 metres, and it’s likely you’ll notice a shortness of breath in the first few days.
Energy levels permitting, you can walk to Lhasa’s Old Town and explore the narrow streets and shops.
Day 2 Potala Palace and Sera Monastery
This morning, wake up to views of the Potala Palace from your hotel, before heading out to visit the site.
Start in the square across the street, one of the best places to photograph the palace in its entirety. Afterwards, join hundreds of pilgrims as they circle the palace as part of the kora. Finally, scale the stairs to enter the palace, and learn about the different statues, paintings and objects as you explore the labyrinth of rooms.
In the afternoon you’ll head for Sera Monastery. Founded by one of Tsongkhapa’s disciples in 1419, as late as 1959 there were over 5,500 monks living within the monastery walls.
Day 3 Gyantse via Yamdrok Lake
This morning you’ll rise early for a day of travel.
You’ll start by following the famous Friendship Highway which links Tibet to Nepal, as you drive out to see Yamdrok Lake.
Next, continue to Gyantse, previously an independent kingdom and a commercial crossroads on the trans-Himalayan route which links central Tibet to Sikkim.
After lunch you’ll visit the Palcho Monastery, built in 1418 and surrounded by an impressive red rampart.
Day 4 Gyantse - Shigatse
This morning you’ll head to Shigatse, Tibet’s second largest city, and once the capital of the Tsang kingdom.
The highlight of Shigatse is Tashilhunpo, a Gelugpa monastery founded in 1447 by the first Dalai Lama, who is buried there. You’ll also stroll through the Tibetan market from where you can witness Shigatse Dzong and shop for traditional jewellery, prayer wheels, and Tibetan handiworks.
Day 5 Shigatse - Lhasa - Jokhang Temple
This morning you’ll head back to Lhasa with plenty of stops along the way.
Back in Lhasa you’ll visit the Jokhang Temple, famous for being the most venerated religious site in Tibet.
Afterwards, you’ll have time to walk through the Old Town and Barkhor Square to pick up some final souvenirs.
Day 6 Departure
Today you’ll be escorted to the airport for your onward journey home