OLA04 Explorewestchina Trans Mt. Kunlun & Nyainqentanglha Qinghai – Tibet Overland Adventure 14 Days Tourfrom
Route:Beijing – Lanzhou – Xiahe – Tongren – Kumbum – Koko Nor Lake – Dulan – Golmud – Tuotuoheyan – Naqu – -Nam Tso Lake – Lhasa – Potala Palace – Jokhang monastery – Drepung monastery – Beijing.
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Vacation Style Holiday TypeDiscovery
Activity Level Strenuous
This unusual journey leads you from Gansu province via Qinghai province to Tibet. You visit some very important monasteries of Gelukpa-sect in Tibet Buddhism like Labrang, Kumbum, Jokhang, Drepung, Sera, Barkhor and Tashilunpo as well as the Potala Palace, experience exotic local conditions and customs, and enjoy the natural landscapes: snow-covered mountains, crystal clear highland lakes, broad meadows, emerald-green forests, peculiar plants and rare wild animals in the Qinghai-Tibet plateau.
Beijing - Lanzhou (D)
In the morning arrival at Capital Airport in Beijing, then fly to Lanzhou (CA1221 1440/1645), transferred to hotel. Lanzhou, the capital of Gansu province, is in the middle of loess plateau of China and has long been an important city on the Silk Road in history. The Yellow river flows through the whole Gansu province.
After the breakfast visit the grottos of 1000-Buddha’s-temple in Bingling over the yellow river by boat. The grottos of the monastery are firstly built in 420AD. Figures here are older than those in Dunghuang-Grottos.
Lanzhou - Xiahe 280 km (B/L/D)
In the morning drive to Xiahe, which is 2,900 meters above the sea level and almost exclusively inhabited by Tibetans. In the afternoon visit Labrang monastery, the most important religious centre on the northeast border of the Tibet region. The monastery created in 1710, as one of the six grand monasteries in Tibet area, has served for centuries there to connect the Tibetan and Mongolian Lamaism.
Xiahe - Tongren 260 km (B/L/D)
Drive to Tongren in the morning. Visit Longwu monastery of Gelukpa sect which was initially constructed in Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368) as a monastery of Sakya-sect and Wutun village the center of Tibetan Regong-Art, which is a successful mixture of religion and folk art.
Tongren - Xunhua - Xining 210 km (B/L/D)
On the way to Xining make a stop in Xunhua (the first station in Qinghai province), to visit the hometown of the 10th Panchan lama and especially the divine lucky tree. In the legend he was finally recognized as the ”holy child” by help of recognition of the Poplar tree near the house his family lived. Then go to Xining, the capital of Qinghai province. This city is mainly inhabited with Tibetan but also a home of Uygur, Kazak and Hui minorities.
Xining - Kumbum - Koko Nor Lake 210 km (B/L/D)
In the morning drive to Kumbum Monastery (Ta’er Si) of Gelukpa-sect, which was built in 1560 in Huangzhong county and also one of the six grand monasteries in Tibet. Tsongkhapa, the founder of the Lamaistic ”yellow hat sect”, was born here. As Kumbum-monastery has always been playing an important role to connect the Mongolian with the Lamaism, today many Mongolian come to this place for worship. Then cross over Sun-and-Moon mountain (Ri Yue Shan). In 641 Wencheng princess of Tang Dynasty passed by this mountain where today a sun-pavilion and a moon-pavilion are built on the summit for people to have a break. The Sun-and-Moon mountain has always been an distinguish line between meadow and agriculture area. After that make a short trekking by the Koko Nor lake, the biggest salty lake in China, with an area of 4,500 square kilometers and an altitude of 3,194m high above sea level. The big lake is acclaimed as ”pearl on the highland” and the scenery of which is unusually fascinating and appears different shapes even at the same time. ”Koko Nor” in Mongolian language means ”blue sea?because of the lunar shape and the color of the lake.
Koko Nor Lake - Dulan 320 km (B/L/D)
In the morning drive to Dulan along the Koko Nor Lake, the biggest salty lake in China, with an area of 4,500 square kilometers and an altitude of 3,194 m above sea level. The big lake is acclaimed as ”pearl on the highland” and the scenery of which is unusually fascinating and appears different shapes even at the same time. ”Koko Nor” in Mongolian language means ”blue lake” because of its lunar shape and color. In addition a small island known as ”the heaven of the birds” lies in the lake. After a approx. 200 km long driving make a short stopover by the Tsaka salty lake where even the wind should be salty. Late in the afternoon arrive in Dulan.
Dulan - Golmud 360 km (B/L/D)
Drive through the Tsaidam basin, among which most part is desert with some oasis dotted in. This basin lies in the north of the Amnyemaqen mountain and the road to Golmud is just along the foot of the mountain. The Xiangride oasis is the last one seen in this desert. Late in the afternoon arrive in Golmud, which is a civilazation center where Tibetan culture and Han culture melt each other.
Golmud - Tuotuoheyan 420 km (B/L/D)
Drive through the vast wilderness and Tsaidam meadow on the Tibet-Qinghai-Plateau along the road in the foot of the Kunlun-mountain and go on upwards by steep valley to cross over the 4.837- meter-high Kunlun Pass. Afterwards pass by the First Bridge over the Yangtse River and arrive in Tuotuoheyan, which is lain in the head stream of the Yangtse River.
Tuotuoheyan - Naqu 430 km (B/L/D)
Cross southwards over the Tangra Shan mountain. On the way the eagles, flocks of sheep and cattle, yaks, snow mountains, tents of Tibetan farmers everywhere altogether form a harmonious unity and allow the spirit and soul of people to relax.
Naqu - Nam Tso Lake - Lhasa 480 km (B/L/D)
Drive on the vast Qiangtang Grassland for Nam Tso. Cross the 5,150 m Lhachen La Pass and reach the Namtso or Tengri Nor (“Heaven Lake” in Mongolian) along the newly paved way and set up camp at Tashi Dorie peninsula. Nam Tso, the biggest salty lake of Tibet, is 70 kilometers long from east to west and 30 kilometers wide from north to south, covering an area of 1,920 square kilometers with an altitude of 4,700 meters above sea level. It is said the holy lake and the holy mountain Nyenchentangla are a couple of lovers, who altogether guard the vast pasture and cattle. Take a walk on the peninsula and visit a small nun temple of Nyingma Sect. In the afternoon drive to Lhasa (3650 m), capital of Tibet Autonomous Region. The city is situated on the bank of the Kyichu River and has long been the ”Holy Land” of Tibet.
In the morning visit Potala, which was originally constructed in 637 by Songtsen Gampo, the first king of the united Tibet, and later expanded and served as the winter residence of the Dalai Lamas as well as the religious-political nexus of traditional Tibet. The crowds of pilgrims, innumerable magnificent murals, Buddhist statues, scriptures and rare treasures altogether creative a dense religious and art atmosphere that impresses every visitor. In the afternoon visit Jokhang monastery, the center of the Tibetan Buddhism and the sacred land of Buddhist followers where thousands of pilgrims come for worship everyday. The temple, built in 647, is the earliest wood-and-masonry structure still existing in Tibet. Walk on the Barkhor street surrounding Jokhang, a big free market with its prolific stalls for selling local specialties.
In the morning visit Drepung monastery the sacred land of Gelug Sect., which was established in 1416 and the second, third and fourth Dalai Lama once resided in. In the afternoon visit Sera monastery, which was created in 1419 and has always been an important Buddhist seminary. As rose are planted everywhere in the monastery, it is also called the court of wild rose? Today still 200 lamas live in there.
Lhasa - Beijing (B)
Free till transfer to the Gongga airport, fly to Beijing.