10 Days Panda & Qinghai Tibet Railway Experience Tour
- panda base
- wenshu temple
- potala palace
- sera monastery
Experience the relaxing lifestyle of Chengdu and have a close contact with the adorable giant panda;
Ride a traditional Chinese train to Tibet on the highest railway in the world - Qinghai-Tibet Railway;
Climb up the grandiose Potala Palace and visit sacred Buddhist temples and monasteries in Lhasa, such as Jokhang Temple, Drepung Monastery etc.;
Go to explore the holy lake as well as one of the most beautiful lakes in China - Namtso Lake.
- Itinerary Details
Welcome to the hometown of Giant Panda! Upon arriving at the airport/train station, you will be met by your local tour guide, and then drive to your downtown hotel in Chengdu City. After the hotel check-in, you are free to take a rest or explore around on your own.
Optional Activity: go to enjoy an authentic Sichuan Cuisine dinner at a local restaurant.
Chengdu has three famous features – Giant Panda, History and Leisure Living Pace. Today, you will go to explore these tree features one by one. First is to visit the lovely Giant Pandas in Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, which is the No. 1 thing to do in Chengdu. You will leave your hotel early and drive about 30 minutes to the panda base so that you can catch up the great moments of pandas, such as feeding, playing, climbing tree, etc. There are different enclosures for pages of different ages, such as all around to see baby pandas, 1 year-old pandas, teenage pandas, and older pandas. Beautiful walking paths will lead you to visit the enclosures from one to next. Enjoy the happy time with pandas.
The second place to visit is the sacred Wenshu Temple which is hidden peacefully among the modern mansions. This temple is the most popular Buddhist temple in Chengdu region. It has beautiful traditional ancient architecture. The atmosphere is calm and quiet, some people are praying. There is a little garden and the monastery is very colorful and decorated. After Wenshu Temple, you are going to explore the leisure living peace of locals at Renmin Park and Jinli Street. Renmin Park, or People’s Park is the place for locals to go for a relaxing walk, meet friends, or have a cup of tea. While Jinli is the “street of tourists”. You can wander on the traditional old street to absorb the special atmosphere of Chengdu, taste local snacks, watching a performance, etc.
Optional Recommended Night Activity:
watch an fascinating show of traditional Sichuan Opera & Face Changing Performance in a local theatre.
Today, you will visit the Dufu Thatched Cottage which is a museum in honor of Dufu (712 -770 AD), who was the greatest realist poet and has been famed as the Sage of Poetry.
After lunch, your tour guide will escort you to the airport for your flight to Xining.
After breakfast, drive around 2.5 hours to the Qinghai Lake which is the best highlights of your Qinghai tour.
Qinghai Lake is surrounded by high mountains from outside. And on the foot of mountains it is endless beautiful grasslands. So you can enjoy the great views by walking, riding or biking. Qinghai Lake is the paradise for birds, which can amount to more than 10 thousand in the summer.
Cruise on the lake and visit the Bird Island in the lake. On route, you will also visit the Riyue Mountains (Sun and Moon Mountains) and the Ri Pagoda and Yue Pagoda which hich were built in Tang Dynasty to commemorate the intermarriage of marrying Princess Wencheng of Tang to Tubo. In nearby, you will also be amazed by the Daotang River which flows oppositely.
Go back Xining and stay overnight.
After breakfast, drive about 26km to visit the famous Taer Monastery.
Taer Monastery is the birthplace of the Tibetan Buddhism master – Tsongkhapa who was the founder of Gelug(a sect of Buddhism). It is also famous as one of “Six Gelug Monasteries”. You must not miss the “three bests” of Taer Monastery – murals, barbola and butter sculptures. Taer Monastery is also a very important institute to learn Buddhism, Astronomy and Medicine. There are many Buddhist ceremonies organized here in each year.
Get back to Xining city for the train to Tibet. Enjoy the fantastic plateau views along this highest railway in the world.
Witness the beautiful Tibetan Plateau with groups of nomads. See the Kekexili Nature Reserve which protects wild plants and animals as well as their natural habitates.
Once arrival at Lhasa, you will be picked up by local tour guide at the train station, then be escorted to your hotel in Lhasa city in a private vehicle.
After arrival at your hotel, the rest of the day is free for you to explore the local areas and acclimatize yourself to the air, temperature and high altitude of Lhasa.
High Altitude Acclimation Tips:
1 go for some leisure walking to acclimate the high altitude but avoid strenuous activity after arrival;
2 you'd better not have bath, in case of catching a cold;
3 drink more water, and have some fruit;
4 have a good rest.
Today we will start off with the fantastic Potala Palace, which historically served as the winter home of the Dalai Lama. It was first used in the 7th century by the 33rd king of Tibet. The most valuable collections in the Potala Palace are the gilded burial stupas of the former Dalai Lamas and the meditation cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet.
After lunch, we will move on to the Jokhang Temple, which was also founded in the 7th century by the 33rd great king of Tibet to promote the Buddhist religion. Inside you can see the statue of the Buddha Sakyamuni as he was at the age of twelve – this is perhaps the most venerated object in Tibetan Buddhism. Around the temple is Barkhor Street where you can perform the “Kora” (a religious circuit around a sacred building or mountain) with pilgrims and locals. The Barkhor market is also a great place to pick up locally made handicrafts and souvenirs.
Tips for Visiting Potala Palace
1. The number of visitors to the palace is strictly limited to 2,300 per day. Visitors can only visit during the time specified on the admission ticket.
2. Admission tickets to visit the Potala Palace are sold out almost every day, so it is strongly recommended to book your tickets several days in advance.
3. There are many steps at the Potala Palace, so it’s best to take it slowly to avoid possible altitude discomfort.
4. Visitors should respect the rules while visiting. Do not wear hats, wear revealing clothes or step on thresholds as these actions violate local customs.
5. Photography and the taking of videos are forbidden inside the Potala Palace.
6. A security search will take place at the entrance to the palace. Explosives, flammables, knives, lighters and
This morning we will visit the Drepung Monastery – one of the great three Gelug monasteries of Tibet. Founded in 1416 by Jamyang Choge, on Tosngkhapa’s main disciples, the Drepung Monastery is home of Ganden Palace, which formerly served as the Dalai Lama’s palace before later moving on to the Potala Palace.
In the afternoon we will move on to see another of the great three of the Gelug monasteries in Tibet – the Sera Monastery. Founded in 1419 by another main disciple of Tsongkhapa, Jamchen Chojey, the main attraction of this monastery is the lively scene of the monks debating Buddhist scriptures in the courtyard behind the monastery in the afternoon.
Want to explore some other features of Tibet instead of the monasteries? Let's take an exciting trip to the holy lake Namtso which is about 5 hours driving from Lhasa City. You will arrive at Namtso Lake around the early afternoon. Take some rest and throw yourself into the incredible landscape of holy lake.
Namtso Lake is the highest saltwater lake in the world with an altitude of 4718 meters, also the second largest saltwater lake in China (after the Qinghai Lake). It’s quite common for tourists who are awestruck at the Namtso at the first sight. With the snowy mountains in the background, the crystal-clear dazzling blue water, Namtso is stretching to the horizon. In clear days, the lake looks like a beautiful turquoise surrounded by magnificent snow-capped Tanggula Mountains, and the lakeshore is green, wide and open, dotted with tents, yaks and sheep of local nomads. For travelers, Namtso is the ideal place for photography, while for Tibetans, it is a scared and magical lake for pilgrimage.
Lastly, drive back to Lhasa for accommodation.
Tips of today:
1 the altitudes of Namtso Lake region is about 5, 000 meters, so you should be fully prepared for high altitude sickness. Do remember to keep warm all the time and avoid strenuous activity;
2 if you want to spend longer time and watch sunset and sunrise, you can also accommodate at Namtso for a night, but the accommodation condition is very basic, so is the food supply.
Today is free for you until your tour guide transfer you to the airport in time for your flight or drop you off at Lhasa train station.
Tips of Today:
1. please pack your luggage carefully, especially for small things like camera charger, power adaptor, mobile phone, phone charger, wallet and towel;
2. If your flight is arranged in the afternoon, please make sure you check out the hotel before 12pm.
- Tour Cost
The quotation for this trip is per person
1. This price is based on a group of 2 adult travelers who will take our private tour and share one standard rooms in regular local 4-star hotel in lower seasons.
2. This price is subject to change according your traveling season, group size, hotel class, change of activities in your itinerary and possible fluctuation of currency exchange rate. If you want a lower price, you can get more people to join you, or use economy class hotels.
- Service Included
All necessary Tibet travel permits.
Private professional English-speaking tour guide.
Private vehicle and Luggage Transfers.
All accommodations, based on double-occupancy. Medium standard accommodation with attached bathroom on twin sharing basis.
Meals, as noted in the itinerary.
Admission fees and activity expenses, as noted in the itinerary. Service Charge (the planning, handling, operational and communication charges) & government taxes.
Tourists Accident/Casualty Insurance
China visa, all air tickets and train tickets to and from Tibet.
Sightseeing not listed in the itinerary.
Meals not listed in the itinerary.
Personal expenses such as laundry, drink, fax, telephone call, optional tour activities, etc.
Gratuities, tips to guides, drivers, bellboys, etc.
Excess Baggage Charges.
Single room supplement.
- Trip Notes
1.Tibet Travel Permit;
You will need a Tibet Entry Permit. Its cost is included in the tour quotation. Send your passport and China visa copies to us 20 days in advance, and we will apply for your permit once you book a Tibetan tour with us. In our experience, we can virtually guarantee to get your permit during times when Tibet is open to foreign travelers.
We’ve selected heritage hotels in the more traditional area of Lhasa, near Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Street, so that travelers can experience more of the local life and culture. If you prefer to stay in a hotel with special oxygen supplies, other hotels in Lhasa are recommended (as above).
The accommodation in Dingri is poor (see above).
Our English-speaking guides are natives of Tibet with good knowledge of Tibetan culture, history, and Buddhism. Most are trained to offer Western-standard service.
Enjoy local Tibetan, Western Chinese and Nepalese food on the tour.
You will have standard western hotel breakfast in Lhasa, and specially prepared breakfasts outside of Lhasa: including butter, bread, coffee, tea, etc.
After the first day, lunch is included every day. Your guide can recommend some good local restaurants for dinner. Outside Lhasa, we suggest you have dinner in the hotels where you are staying.
Before your trip, ask your doctor for any suggestions in relation to altitude sickness and bring some medicine just in case. The most popular altitude medicine among foreigners is Acetazolamide/Diamox.
We recommend that during the first two days after arriving in Tibet, visitors should keep warm, not take a bath, not smoke or drink alcohol. Drink plenty of water (>4 litres per day) before going and at altitude, and eat lots of vegetables and carbohydrates. Slow down, even if you feel energetic. Moving slowly is the best way to avoid altitude sickness.
If you don’t feel well after entering Tibet, go and see a doctor as soon as possible. There are doctors in major hotels in Lhasa, and you can call your tour guide for help at any time. We offer a free oxygen bag in the car.
6. What to Pack
Seek medical advice about altitude effects and pack any medicine you might need. Sunglasses, snow glasses, hats, lip balm, sun block, walking boots, and down jackets are all recommended.
Comfortable private cars/vans with experienced drivers will be arranged for you. All our vehicles meet the requirements of the Tibet Tourist Bureau, and are equipped with GPS and speed-limiting equipment.
Take into consideration the time you need to apply for your Tibet Entry Permit. It’s best to book a tour with us at least 30 days before your tour starts.
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