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Take a more profound look at spiritual life in Tibet as you journey through its heart, touring in a loop from Lhasa, along the shores of Yamdrok Tso Lake, through rolling foothills, to Gyantse, Shigatse and back. At each stop, an adventure, a new facet of Tibetan life to explore.
A tour of Tibet can take you into its heart. But, you’ll have to look deeper to discover its soul. Linger in Lhasa, walking the pilgrimage route at Barkhor and mingling with the nuns at Chupsang. Then head into the country, driving along pristine lakes, the panoramas around you etching themselves on your memory as you head to Palkhor Monastery, its three strands of Buddhism, and thousands of artifacts. Sutras still floating like whispers in the corners of your mind, you end in a tour of Shigatse, walking the kora, and reflecting on your Tibetan discoveries.
Acclimatize to the elevation of one of the world’s highest cities 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
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
Be greeted by the phrase “om mani padme hum” as you visit the lesser-known 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
Travel along freshwater Yamdrok Tso Lake, a holy lake of clear blue surrounded by softly rolling mountains, to Gyantse
Visit Palkhor Monastery, a sprawling complex home to three strands of Buddhism • Explore Palkhor Monastery’s massive, multilayered Kumbum Stupa which holds thousands of Tibetan Buddhist relics • Travel to Shigatse • Head to Tashi Lhunpo Monastery, a huge complex of golden-roofed white buildings with a trove of Tibetan Buddhist artwork • If time permits, walk the pilgrimage route • Have a relaxing morning visiting local markets • Spend the rest of the day at your leisure in Lhasa
A short walk from Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street, the Four Points offers contemporary guestrooms with beds that can be firm.
With unparalleled views of Potala Palace, the St. Regis is inspired by Sera Monastery and pays homage to Tibet’s culture and history.
Many foreign tour companies bring in foreigners for their tour guides to “explain” China and they leave little permanent benefit to the areas they visit. With Wild China, they have developed deep contacts into the best ways to experience this big and diverse country…I have recommended Wild China to international colleagues, organizations traveling in China with private planes, to families wanting a unique trekking experience in unchartered wilderness. In all cases, Wild China never fails to deliver, and it’s a company that always finds a way to give you an unforgettable, — if not totally unexpected — life trip. Visit