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Journey through the Himalayas: Lhasa to Kathmandu along the Friendship Highway

16 days from $6,410pp

What is tailor made? 100% custom | Exceptional experiences | Hand-picked guides | Lodging with character | Designed to your schedule, budget & interests

    Places visited:

  • Kathmandu
  • Gongkar
  • Tsetang
  • Lhasa
  • Gyantse
  • Shigatse
  • Xegar
  • Rongbuk and Everest Base Camp Region
  • Gyirong
  • Delhi
  • Explore Lhasa's Potala Palace.

  • Visit the working Sakya Monastery.

  • Journey from the Tibetan plateau into Kathmandu.

  • Take in views of Mount Everest's north face.

Audley Travel specialist Niall

What our specialists say...

This itinerary takes you from the Tibetan plateau, through the Himalaya, into Nepal and on to Kathmandu. You'll spend time visiting the working monasteries around Lhasa, as well as those dotted along the Friendship Highway. The scenery, especially towards the end of the journey, becomes more mountainous as you visit the world's highest mountain and travel along one of just a few roads crossing the Himalaya. You then descend from the Tibetan plateau through steep valleys into Kathmandu.

We recommend this trip for:

  • Kathmandu
  • Tsetang
  • Lhasa
  • Gyantse
  • Shigatse
  • Rongbuk and Everest Base Camp Region
  • Kathmandu
  • Delhi

Itinerary idea in detail

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Day 1 Kathmandu

Kathmandu

Once you've landed, cleared customs and collected your baggage, you're met by your guide for a private transfer to your hotel.

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Day 2 Kathmandu

Kathmandu

Today you can enjoy a tour with your driver and guide, taking in Kathmandu's sights and attractions. You'll also visit the impressive Swayambhunath Stupa situated on a hill in the west of the city. Swayambhunath is also known as the Monkey Temple due to the large number of monkeys that live on the hill.

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Day 3 Kathmandu

Kathmandu

You have the full day at leisure today. We suggest exploring the city on foot, walking between Dunbar Square and Thamel. Alternatively, relax in the Garden of Dreams - a neo-classical garden just outside Thamel.

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Day 4 Tsetang

Kathmandu , Gongkar , Tsetang

Your private driver takes you to the airport this morning ready for your flight from Kathmandu to Gongkar Airport in Tibet. On arrival, you're met by your Tibetan guide for the drive to Tsetang. The afternoon should be taken at a leisurely pace as you adjust to the high altitude.

Accommodation

Day 5 Tsetang

Tsetang

Today your guide accompanies you by car to Samye Monastery - Tibet's first Buddhist monastery. In the afternoon you continue on to Yambulagang Palace, home of the first 32 kings of Tibet. There are great views of the surrounding countryside from the palace.

Accommodation

Day 6 Lhasa

Tsetang , Lhasa

This morning you're driven in a private vehicle to the capital, Lhasa. On arrival you check into your hotel and then enjoy the rest of the day at leisure to wander through the Tibetan bazaar and streets of the old city.

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Day 7 Lhasa

Lhasa

Visit the superb Potala Palace this morning, which is the seat of the Dalai Lamas. In the afternoon, explore Sera Monastery, where you may be able to watch the monks debating. Later you visit Lhasa's only nunnery, near Barkhor Square.

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Day 8 Lhasa

Lhasa

This morning you can enjoy a tour of Lhasa's most important temple, the Jokhang. Afterwards, travel to the outskirts of Lhasa to visit the seat of the State Oracle at Drepung.

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Day 9 Gyantse

Lhasa , Gyantse

Your private driver escorts you to Gyantse today on the Southern Friendship Highway, first passing the beautiful Turquoise Lake and later, snow-capped peaks. On arrival in Gyantse the evening is at your leisure.

Accommodation

Day 10 Gyantse

Gyantse

Today is spent with your guide visiting the impressive Pelkor Chode Monastery and the Kumbum. Afterwards you're free to wander around the old town independently, perhaps visiting Gyantse Fort.

Accommodation

Day 11 Shigatse

Gyantse , Shigatse

You're driven in a private vehicle to Shigatse this morning, via Shalu Monastery. In the afternoon you also visit Tashilunpo Monastery, the former seat of the Panchen Lama. Afterwards you have some time at leisure to wander around and visit the local markets.

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Day 12 Xegar

Shigatse , Xegar

This morning you're driven from Shigatse to Xegar, visiting Sakya Monastery. The seat of the Sakya School of Tibetan Buddhism, it was founded in 1073. You'll visit a number of the monastery's temples.

Accommodation

Day 13 Rongbuk and Everest Base Camp Region

Xegar , Rongbuk and Everest Base Camp Region

Today, enjoy the passing scenery on the drive towards the Himalaya, eventually arriving at isolated Rongbuk Monastery, which sits in the shadow of Everest. You'll spend the night here at an altitude of 5,000 m (16,400 ft).

Accommodation

Day 14 Gyirong

Rongbuk and Everest Base Camp Region , Gyirong

Set off early this morning for a hike up to Base Camp itself, where you can take in staggering views of Everest. You then make the journey to Gyirong, the border crossing between Tibet and Nepal.

Accommodation

Day 15 Kathmandu

Gyirong , Kathmandu

After crossing the border this morning, you're met by your new driver and guide for your private transfer through the mountains to Kathmandu.

Accommodation options

Day 16 Return home

Kathmandu , Delhi

You're taken to the airport in a private vehicle today in time for your onward flight.

Audley Travel specialist Niall

Contact a specialist

The specialist who designs your trip to Nepal will have explored the country many times and, in some cases, lived there. Their first-hand knowledge gives us the belief that no other travel company can match our expertise in helping you plan your trip. Your dedicated specialist will take the time to understand your preferences and build them into an itinerary to match, working to your budget. He or she will keep perfecting it until you’re completely happy and ready to book.

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When to go

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Kathmandu
 
 
 
Tsetang
 
 
 
Lhasa
 
 
 
Gyantse
 
 
 
Shigatse
 
 
 
Everest Base Camp
 
 
 
Delhi
 
 
 

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