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Taking this popular trip of 18-day Tibet Nepal tour from Chengdu, you will not only take in the magnificent peak view of Mount Everest, appreciate the breathtaking diversified landscapes in Nepal, but also visit the mystic monasteries and historic sites in the legendary cities of Lhasa, Shigatse, Kathmandu, etc. This journey will be a lifetime chance for you to discover the essence of both Nepal and Tibet in one go.
The tour starts in the noted Chinese city of Chengdu, where you will see the cute Giant Panda, before taking the train to Lhasa along the prestigious Qinghai-Tibet Railway. In Lhasa, you will visit the most attractive Buddhist monasteries and the world-famous Potala Palace. While enjoying your overland tour from Lhasa to Kathmandu, you will pass the turquoise Yamdrok Lake, visit the grand Tashilhunpo Monastery, and venture to Everest Base Camp of Tibetan side to gaze upon its soaring peak of Mount Everest. Then in Nepal, you will spend one week exploring the most popular sites of this country, from the scared temples to the wild stunning natural sights, like Swayambhunath Pagoda, Bhaktapur Durbar Square, Chitwan National Park, etc.
Best Time to Visit
All year round
Very leisure tour; light physical demand for the high altitude
Day by Day Itinerary
Day 1 Arrive in Chengdu
When you arrive in Chengdu, our local tour guide will be there to meet you at the Chengdu International Airport, and help you transfer to your hotel, where you can rest after your flight. The rest of the day is yours to either rest or to explore the area and take in some of the local sights.
Stay overnight in Chengdu
Day 2 Chengdu Tour: Chengdu Panda Base, Wenshu Temple, Renmin Park and Jinli Street
Chengdu Giant Panda
Jinli Ancient Street
In the morning, drive to Chengdu Research Base of Giant Breeding, the home to giant pandas, where you will catch pandas' feeding time. They are at their most active, both adults and babies. There's a wealth of information and a panda museum in this 230-hectare park 10 km (6 miles) north of Chengdu. It takes about 2.5 hours to visit this site.
Then, you will visit some other highlights of Chengdu, including the Wenshu Temple, Renmin Park and Jinli Street. As the best-preserved Buddhist temple in Chengdu, Wenshu Temple is famous for its exquisite gardens and halls. Renmin Park is a beautiful city park often filled with locals, and you can enjoy a cup of tea to experience the slow life of Chengdu there. In the end of today, you will walk along the Jinli Ancient Street to fully appreciate Sichuan’s customs and folk arts.
Stay overnight in Chengdu
Day 3 Free to Explore the City, then Board Train to Lhasa
The whole day is free for you to explore around the city. In the evening, you will be transferred to Chengdu Railway Station for the train to Lhasa. Your Tibet Permit will need to be checked before boarding.
Stay overnight on the train
Day 4 Train to Lhasa
Today, you will spend the whole day on the train to Lhasa. It is quite a long journey from Chengdu to Lhasa, for about 36 hours in total. You will pass through two important provincial capital cities in northwest China, Lanzhou and Xining. Xining is known as the beginning of Qinghai-Tibet Railway.
You will witness the most beautiful scenery along Qinghai-Tibet Railway. From the deserts to massive grassland, snowy mountains to turquoise lakes, all these landscapes will continually appear and strongly appeal to your eyes.
Stay overnight on the train
Day 5 Scenery View of Tibet Railway, and Arrive in Lhasa
Lhasa Train Station
Yarlung Tsangpo River
The Chengdu-Lhasa train will arrive in Lhasa at about 09:55 in the morning. Upon your arrival, your tour guide will hold a board with your name on it at the exit to welcome you. A private car will take you to the reserved hotel. You may view the Yarlung Tsangpo River (the longest and largest river in Tibet) and Lhasa River on their way to Lhasa.
Stay overnight in Lhasa.
Tips: If this is your first visit to Tibet, you will need to acclimatize to the increased elevation, to prevent altitude sickness. This is best done by resting in the hotel and minimizing any physical exertion.
Day 6 Lhasa Tour: Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street
In the morning, you will visit the famous Potala Palace and explore the grandest chapels. You will experience its audience halls, the jeweled and golden burial chortens (stupa tombs) of past Dalai Lamas, and tremendous number of Buddhist frescoes, Thangkas, combinations of mandala, etc.
In the afternoon, you will continue your visit to the holiest temple in Tibet, the Jokhang Temple, built during Songtsen Ganpo's Reign by Princess Wencheng of Tang Dynasty, 647 A.D, and its famous Barkhor Street, where you can buy or appreciate traditional Tibetan artifacts, religious implements, antiques, books, Tibetan music instrument, Thangkas, and tradition Tibetan clothes, etc. You will have a chance to get close to appreciate how the artists draw Thangkas at the Thangka workroom at Barkhor.
Stay overnight in Lhasa
Day 7 Lhasa Tour: Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery
Scriptures Debating in Sera Monastery
Today, you will visit two important monasteries in Lhasa, the Drepung and the Sera. Drepung Monastery is situated at the foothill of a mountain and was founded by Jamyang Choeje in 1416. It was once home of 10000 monks and Ganden Podrang in Drepung is famous it was the government centre during fifth Dalai Lama and later moved to the famous Potala Palace during fifth Dalai Lama.
After having lunch, continue to visit the Sera Monastery, which was founded in 1419 by Tsongkapa's disciple Jamchen Choeje. The most attractive is that monks debating is held there in the courtyard at around 3-5 in the afternoon section most of the time.
Stay overnight in Lhasa
Day 8 Lhasa to Shigatse
Today, we will drive from Lhasa to Shigatse via Gyantse. On the way, we’ll drive over the Gangbala Pass (4790 m) to view Yamdrok Lake and Mt. Naiqinkangsang. Besides, you can also appreciate Korola Glacier on the roadside. At Manak Dam Lake, tourists can hang pray flag at Simila Mountain Pass.
Then we’ll go to the heritage town Gyantse and explore its old street, Perklor Monastery and Kumbum Stupa. Here you can far view Gyangtse Fortress.
Later, we’ll arrive at Shigatse, the second largest city in Tibet. And tourists can visit traditional Barley Mill and view the landscape of Barley Field (in summer).
Stay overnight in Shigatse
Day 9 Shigatse to Everest Base Camp
Mt. Everest in the distance
Everest Base Camp
In the morning, we will visit the home of Panchan Lama - Tashilunpo Monastery. It is largest monastery of the Gelug Sect in Rear Tibet, and the main stage where generations of Panchen Lamas carried out religious and political activities. After getting your Alien’s Travel Permit, we will leave Shigatse and then drive to Lhatse for lunch.
After that, we’ll drive over Tsola Pass (4600m), and Gyatsola Pass (5248m). At Kyawula Pass (5180m), tourists can view the panorama of Himalaya. Then we’ll drive along the new zigzag road to Everest Base Camp and get closer to Mt. Everest peak. You are lucky enough to catch the sunset of golden Everest peak if time and weather permits at the lodging area.
Stay overnight at local guest house or tent hotel
Day 10 EBC to Gyirong Border
Sunrise over the Mt.Everest
Everest Base Camp
In the morning, you can catch the stunning sunrise of Everest Peak if weather permits at the lodging area and then pay a visit to Rongbuk Monastery - the unique highest monastery with nuns and monks living together.
Then we’ll drive from EBC to Kyirong Border. On the way, you can far view Mt. Shishapangma and the Pekutso Lake. After passing the Ghungtang Lhamo(5236m), we’ll arrive in Kyirong in late afternoon.
Stay overnight in the Kyirong guest house
Day 11 Gyirong to Nepal Border
In the morning, your guide will assist you to exit China, and will see you off at the border with Nepal. On the other side, our guide from Nepal will meet you and transfer you to Kathmandu, and your hotel. The rest of the day is yours to look around the area, or just rest in your hotel after the rigorous trip across Tibet.
Stay overnight at hotel in Kathmandu
Day 12 Kathmandu to Nagarkot
Kathmandu Durbar Square
Today, you'll visit the most famous attractions in Kathmandu Valley. Kathmandu Durbar Square is the Royal Palace Square in the city, and is surrounded by ancient buildings from the early 16th century. The magnificent architecture, exquisite decorations, and the intensity of historical items gives a great insight into Nepali culture.
You then continue the tour with a visit to the Swayambhunath Pagoda, which is one of the oldest Buddhist sites in Nepal. Swayambhunath is a huge golden stupa festooned with prayer flags that flutter in the breeze, on a hill that overlooks the entire city. Then it is on to Boudhanath, located on the ancient trade route. It is a place of meditation and part of the spiritual journey around Kathmandu. With one of the largest stupas in the world, it has been the site of many Tibetan prayers over the centuries.
After Boudhanath, you will drive on to Nagarkot, a small town nearby that has great views of eight of the 13 Himalayan Ranges, including Annapurna, Manaslu, Langtang, and Mahalangur, as well as stunning views over the Kathmandu Valley.
Stay overnight in Nagarkot
Day 13 Nagarkot to Pokhara
Panoramic views of Himalayan peaks in Pokhara
Today, you will be driven to Pokhara early morning after breakfast. The whole journey takes about 5.5 hours. En route to Pokhara, you will stop off to visit the spectacular Bhaktapur Durbar Square, a Royal Palace square with pagodas and shikhara temples strewn around the ancient Royal Palace. The square really highlights the ancient building arts of Nepal.
Pokhara is a remarkable place of natural beauty. Situated at an altitude of 827m from the sea level and 200 km west of Kathmandu valley, the city is known as a center of adventure. The enchanting city with a population of around 95,000 has several beautiful lakes and offers stunning panoramic views of Himalayan peaks. The serenity of lakes and the magnificence of the Himalayas rising behind them create an ambience of peace and magic. So today the city has not only become the starting point for most popular trekking and rafting destinations but also a place to relax and enjoy the beauty of nature.
Stay overnight in Pokhara
Day 14 Pokhara Sightseeing Tour
Temple of Bindhyabasini
With a full day for sightseeing around Pokhara, the day starts with a trip to the stunning Devi’s Falls, known locally as Patale Chhango. This beautiful waterfall drops 150 meters into a huge sinkhole at the bottom, which continues on dropping for another 100 meters into a cave system below. According to local legends, the falls were originally named David’s Fall in English, after a Swiss traveler who fell into the sinkhole in 1961, dragging his girlfriend with him, and which has been changed over the years to become Davi’s Falls.
After the falls, you will visit the sacred cave of Gupteswar Gupha, a limestone cave across from the falls. Almost 3 kilometers long, the cave has huge caverns as well as narrow passages, and is a sacred place for Hindus, as it contains the Phallic symbol of Lord Shiva, which has been preserved in the caves.
Nearby lies the related Temple of Bindhyabasini in Nepal, believed to be a replica of the famous Bindhyabasini Temple in Bindhyachal, Uttar Pradesh. Legend says that the deity, Bindhyabasini, was brought to Nepal before the unification of the country by the then king of the Kaski region, Siddhi Narayan Shah.
Finally, the last site of the day is the beautiful Barahi Temple, also known as the Lake Temple, located on a small island in the east of the Phewa Lake. Used for prayers by Hindus and Buddhists alike, this temple was originally dedicated to the Hindu Goddess, Durga (Barahi in Nepalese), who is known as the Protector of the Gods.
Stay overnight in Pokhara
Day 15 Pokhara to Chitwan
In the morning, you will drive the 96 kilometers from Pokhara to Chitwan, on the southern border with India. The rest of the day in Chitwan is yours, and the views over the Narayani River at sunset are spectacular.
Stay overnight in Chitwan
Day 16 Day Tour in Chitwan National Park
Chitwan National Park
Chitwan National Park with Elephant
The following morning it is off to Chitwan National Park, one of the largest national parks in Nepal. Designated a UNESCO Natural World Heritage Site in 1984, the park is the home to hundreds of species of wild animals. Offering protection to 56 species of mammals, the park’s residents include sloth bears, wild elephants, striped hyenas, wild bison, leopards, and the Asian one-horned rhinoceros. The park is also home to more than a third of Nepal’s wild Bengal tigers, and there are good chances you will get to see one in its natural habitat.
The park also hosts numerous jungle activities, including elephant safaris, canoeing, and white-water rafting, and is a popular destination for both animal lovers and thrill seekers.
Stay overnight in Chitwan
Day 17 Chitwan to Kathmandu
A view of magnificent Patan Durbar Square
Patan Durbar Square
After breakfast, you will drive back to Kathmandu, where you can have a nice lunch before heading off to visit the third largest city in Nepal, Patan, located in the south of the Kathmandu Valley. There you can visit the Patan Durbar Square, another of the Royal Palace Squares of ancient Nepali culture, which remains as the finest collection of palaces and temples in Nepal.
Stay overnight in Kathmandu
Day 18 Kathmandu Departure
In the morning, your guide will pick you up from your hotel in a private car, take you to the airport, and help you with your luggage and checking in for your flight home from Nepal.
- Tibet Travel Permit and all other necessary permit to Tibet;
- Domestic train/flight tickets as indicated in the itinerary, including the hard sleeper ticket of Chengdu-Lhasa train;
- All lodging listed in the itinerary. If you travel individually, you will need to share one room with another tourist. If you prefer to stay in one room by yourself, you will have to pay the single room supplement;
- Private transportation to the destinations and sites listed in the itinerary; ranging from 4WD land cruiser to bus depending on the group size and trip route; car gasoline, road toll and in-transport refreshments (free bottles of water, air pillow and headscarf) are included;
- Meals listed in the itinerary;
- Experienced English-speaking Tibetan local tour guide;
- Entrance ticket fees for all the sight spots listed in the itinerary;
- First aid kit;
- Chinese visa;
- International flight to and out of China;
- Tips and gratuities for the trip leader and driver;
- Meals not specified the itinerary (Averagely a meal in the 3rdpole region cost 3~15USD per person in Tibet Autonomous Region);
- The expense of a personal nature like alcoholic beverages, laundry, phone call, etc;
- Optional activities and excursions not specified in the itinerary;
Once we receive your tour deposit, which is followed by signing the contract, your reservation is secured with legitimacy. Our staff will reserve the accommodation, vehicle, site tickets, meals and more, and pay the deposit for our suppliers. So if you want to alter to another itinerary, you need to cover the deposit we've paid, while no service charge is needed if you make some changes on the itinerary you booked.
Cancellation and Refund Policy
If you cancel the tour beacuse of your personal issues, you will be liable to pay cancellation charges that are bounded by 3rdpoletour.com cancellation policy as follows:
1.) If you cancel the tour more than 30 days before the trip starts, you will forfeit 10% of the total land cost per person;
2.) If you cancel the tour 15-30 days prior to your trip start date, 20% of your total land tour cost will be forfeited as a cancellation fee.
3.) If you cancel the tour 7-15 days before the trip starts, you will forfeit 30% of land cost.
4.) If you cancel the tour 7 days prior to your tour start date, you will forfeit 50% of land cost.
5.) If you fail to show up or cancel at your scheduled arrival time without prior notice or later than that, you will forfeit 100% of the land cost.
If the tour has to be cancelled because of the natural disaster or the government restrictions that is beyond both parties control, we will charge only USD50 per person, this is just the service fee and larbor fee during the preparation. This is a rare occurrence!
The cancellation fee charged by 3rdpoletour.com will be kept under your name (person who contacted us) for a usable period of 2 years. Within the applicable period you can use it for next time or you can kindly pass your authority to any of your family, friends or colleagues to use by booking a tour with 3rdpoletour.com. A certifying email from you is necessary to pass the cancellation fee to others, but it is only applicable for private group.
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