Those who wish to take a closer look at Tibetan spirituality will love this itinerary, designed to satisfy such curiosities. Starting in what is known as the center of Tibetan Buddhism, Lhasa, the journey will take you from the city’s great spiritual sites, including Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and more, to the holy waters of Namtso Lake. You’ll continue onwards to Tidrum, stopping in important monasteries and nunneries along the way. You’ll wind up your journey once again in Lhasa, where you can spend a final night at the luxurious St. Regis hotel.
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Arrive in Tibet’s capital, Lhasa, where you’ll be greeted and driven to your luxurious hotel, the St. Regis. Along the way, you’ll enjoy your first view of Potala Palace - an important religious site for Tibetans. Once you’re all checked in to your room, you may enjoy spending the rest of the day at your leisure.
Wake up this morning and enjoy a pleasant breakfast at your hotel. Next, you’ll head out into the city, where you’ll start your sightseeing tour with Potala Palace, the one-time home of the Dalai Lama. Continue onwards to Barkhor Square, a bustling pilgrimage site made up of busy, cobbled lanes. Finish off your tour with Jokhang Temple, considered by many Tibetans to be their country’s most important and sacred temple. Overnight once again in your plush room at the St. Regis.
For your final day of touring in Lhasa, you’ll visit the magnificent Sera Monastery, home to hundreds of monks from all over Tibet. Continue your spiritual exploration to Drepung Monastery, which was once the mother temple of Dalai Lamas. If you like, we can also arrange a visit to a local Tibetan family’s house. Alternatively, you may choose to receive sacred blessings from high Lamas.
Now that you’re acclimatized to the altitude of the plateau, you’ll take a journey over the northern nomadic grassland, driving along the Qinghai-Tibet highway, where you’ll merge into the Changthang-Northern nomadic plain. From here, you’ll cross the Legan La Pass, 5,190 meters above sea-level. Now you’ll get your first sighting of Namtso Lake, believed by local families to house dragons. If you feel up to it, take a walk around the pilgrimage trail around the hill, fringed by mani-stone walls and mystical caves.
Today you’ll embark on a journey off-the-beaten-path, deep into the alpine valleys. You’ll pass isolated villages and nomadic tents, before arriving at Reting Monastery. This historically-important monastery is nestled amongst juniper trees, at the base of Mt Gangi Rarwa. Spend the night at a simple but comfortable local guesthouse.
Hit the road again today, this time for around six hours, tracing the Reting river. You’ll pass Kampa stupas along the way, with beautiful scenes as their backdrop. The Tidrum valley is replete with prayer flags, and famous for its medicinal hot springs. Pay a visit to the nunnery, before checking in to a local guesthouse and resting your head for the night.
You’ll head to Drigung monastery today, perched on a cliff 4,150 meters above sea-level, towering over the valley below. You’ll also see Gandan Monastery, also perched high in the sky - this one, at the top of Wangbur Mountain. You’ll then journey back to Lhasa today, where you can check in to your plush room at the St. Regis hotel once again, ahead of tomorrow’s departure.
Today you’ll check out of the St. Regis and be transported by your guide and driver to the airport in time for your departure flight to wherever you are headed next.
Opened in April 2014, this luxury property is a fitting new addition to the Lhasa hospitality scene. Shangri-La is, after all, the mythical kingdom believed to inhabit the Tibetan plateaus. Located in the city center, this stylish urban retreat allows guests to experience time-honored Tibetan customs - being welcomed with a local drink called chima, for instance, and being presented with a ceremonial khata scarf. Visitors at the Shangri-La Lhasa can enjoy being within strolling distance of this historic city's main attractions, including Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple. For those who find Lhasa's high-altitude landscapes literally breathtaking, there's an oxygen lounge and relaxation center at the resort primed for guest recuperation. As with all Shangri-La properties, local culture plays a vital role in both the hospitality and the décor. At the Lhasa resort, this manifests in traditional architecture and design, with contemporary, luxuriously appointed guest rooms accented with local Tibetan textiles and artworks. Guests are also spoiled with far-reaching views of the mountains, the city and the spectacular Potala Palace.
Opened in November 2010, the St. Regis Resort in Lhasa stands on eight acres of land at “the roof of the world," with sweeping views of the Potala Palace. The spacious 162 rooms and villas with marble baths are decorated with carefully sourced artifacts that reflect the richness of Tibetan culture. There are a variety of restaurants to choose from, including the intimate private wine club Decanter by Haut-Brisson and Si Zi Kang, which serves traditional Tibetan cuisine. The health club boasts an indoor heated swimming pool, a yoga and pilates studio, and Iridium, a spa offering refined indulgence with Tibetan flavor. The business center offers 4 meeting rooms, copy and printing services, and faxing services. Other amenities include secretarial service and 24-hour butler service. The St. Regis Lhasa is located just minutes from the Potala Palace, the famous Barkhor area, Jokang Temple, Norbulinka, and is 46 miles from Gongga International Airport.