Escape to Lhasa

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5 Days
Spring, Summer, Fall

Lhasa’s name means “Place of the Gods.” As you tour the Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple under a sky so big and so close it feels like you could turn and walk straight up into it, you’ll understand both the name and what has kept travelers coming back for centuries.

About this Journey

An image of Lhasa lives in the imagination. Of imposing, white palace walls, endless blue skies, and spinning prayer wheels; of an ancient capital city in the clouds. A city to more than tour – one to absorb, to cherish. Lhasa is truly that city – where you will witness a traditional debate between monks, picnic on the shores of Yamdrok Tso Lake, hills rolling into panoramas on the far shore, and meander the stalls and stores at Barkhor, touring a world of silver and silks. Escape to the capital in the clouds, the Place of the Gods. Escape to Lhasa.

What we love
  • Enjoying a picnic lunch on the banks of holy Yamdrok Tso Lake while surrounded by softly sloping mountains
  • Exploring gilded Jokhang Temple, considered the most sacred temple in Tibet
Where you're going
Lhasa map

Day 1

Acclimatize to Lhasa’s elevation and spend the day at your leisure • Recommended: follow along the Barkhor pilgrimage route to see prayer wheels being spun, pilgrims prostrating, and hear sutras being chanted.

Day 2

Visit the gilded Jokhang Temple, which attracts a large number of pilgrims due to it being considered the most sacred temple in Tibet • Explore Potala Palace, Tibet’s defining religious landmark, a grand masterpiece of white, crimson and gold famed for being the former residence of the Dalai Lama.

Day 3

Be greeted by the phrase “om mani padme hum” as you visit Pabongka Monastery • Hike downhill to Chupsang Nunnery, surrounded by green fields and home to 80 red-robed nuns • Witness monks animatedly debate Buddhist philosophy in the courtyard of Sera Monastery, one of Tibet’s top university monasteries • If interested, learn about thangka, a colorful Tibetan Buddhist form of painting, or visit local NGOs.

Day 4 - 5

Enjoy a picnic by the freshwater Yamdrok Tso Lake, a holy lake of clear blue surrounded by softly rolling mountains • Optional: visit Ganden Monastery, another great university monastery tucked away on a mountain ridge • Spend the rest of the day at your leisure in Lhasa • Recommended: browse the bustling, multicolored handicraft stalls of Barkhor, where brightly colored beads hang alongside painstakingly crafted silver trinkets.

Recommended Hotels

Four Points Lhasa

4 star

A short walk from Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street, the Four Points offers contemporary guestrooms with beds that can be firm.

Shangri-La Lhasa

5 star

The Shangri-La Lhasa provides a copy of James Hilton’s Lost Horizon in each room and boasts both an oxygen lounge and reflexology pavilion.


Recommended seasons




What’s Included

  • All overland transfers with private chauffeur and in-transport refreshments
  • All admission fees and activity expenses, as noted in the itinerary
  • Meals as noted in the itinerary with complimentary drinking water
  • Ground transportation, including airport transfers
  • Services of an English-speaking WildChina guide
  • Private chauffeur service to and from airport at start and end of your trip

What’s Excluded

  • International and domestic flights, domestic trains, plus relevant taxes
  • Chinese tourist visa, which is required for most foreign passport holders
  • Travel and medical insurance
  • Meals, apart from those included in the itinerary, and alcohol
  • Expenses of a personal nature
  • Excursions and activities not included in the itinerary
  • Discretionary gratuities for guides and drivers
Why WildChina

We’re on the ground with you

Our team of advisors will design every detail of the trip with you through close consultation, then orchestrate your entire journey while on the ground. We’re in the same time zone as you, so we can fulfill requests and handle issues without a hitch. With over 40 staff in Beijing and an expansive network of operational partners across the country, we have the manpower to ensure your journey is safe, reliable and comfortable from beginning to end.

Your trip, your way

Flexibility is our highest-ranking compliment. We pull off journeys for pioneers with a 6-hour layover to Hollywood’s elite, and everywhere in between. Our team regularly pulls off unprecedented logistical feats; nearly any time frame or budget is within our realm. No matter how you wish to experience China, we are here to bring that dream to life.

We embody passion

WildChina guides are carefully handpicked for their knowledge and charisma, then meticulously trained to maintain our exceptional service standards. They are expert storytellers and passionate natives of the regions where they guide, having the perfect combination of local insights and service know-how to bring you seamless once-in-a- lifetime moments all across China.

The little things, the big picture

Supporting inspired local economies allows you to experience the soul of the destination, while also protecting and cultivating China’s artisanal culture. From watching artisans hand make shoes in Yunnan, to picking organic vegetables for dinner on a local farm in Fujian, our tours are designed to showcase and protect China’s heritage, both natural and human.