The Tsurphu to Yangpachen trek is an excellent choice for those who want to get a close look at the Tibetan herders (drokpa) and their semi-nomadic lifestyle. Although they have permanent winter homes they spend much of the year camping with their animals.
Beginning at Tsurphu Monastery this rugged walk crosses several alpine valleys before emerging into the broad and windswept Yangpachen valley. This is a high elevation trek exceeding 4400m for the entire duration and a maximum elevation 5400m at the Lasar-la. Combining alpine tundra and sweeping mountain panoramas with visits to monasteries and a nunnery, this trek nicely balances cultural and wilderness activities. The Best time for this trek is from Mid- April to Mid of October.
|Day2||Lhasa sight seeing|
|Day3||Lhasa sight seeing|
|Day8||Dorjeeling Nunnery-Yagchen Monastery-Yangpachen Hotspring-Lhasa|
|Day9||Departure from Lhasa Airport/Lhasa Trainstation|
Today you will reach Lhasa and our guide will receive up at the airport or train station. We will then be escorted to Hotel in Lhasa. The journey from airport to Lhasa city will take about an hour and from train station to old Lhasa city will take about fifteen minutes. The rest of the day is rest day for the team to get proper acclimatization to high altitude. You will stay three days in Lhasa including this day.
Today is the first sight seeing day of your tour in Tibet. We will be visiting Jokhang Temple in the morning, which located in center of old city. In the afternoon we will be going to see the majestic Potala palace. If you team are interest we will take you to the ancient Barkhor street our guide will help you with the street.
Potala palace was built by Tibetan king Songtsan Gampo and later rebuilt by fifth Dalai Lama. It was the winter residence of the Dalai Lamas until peaceful libiration in year 1959. Its builted on a rocky hill overlooking the city of Lhasa, the Potala Palace has a sturdy fortress-like appearance. It contains more than a thousand rooms spreading over an area of 1,300 feet by 1,000 feet. The stone walls are 16 feet thick at the base, but more finely constructed (without the use of nails) in the upper stories. The Potala Palace is made of two main parts, easily distinguished by their color: the Red Palace and White Palace. The two are joined by a smaller, yellow-painted structure that houses the sacred banners hung on the exterior for the New Year festivals. The rooms inside the palace are identified by numbers as well as names.
Jokhang Temple was builted in 647 by King Songtsen Gampo (r.617-49), and his two foreign wives who are credited with bringing Buddhism to Tibet. The king’s first wife, Princess Bhrikuti (married in the 630s), was the sister of the Nepalese king, while his second wife, Princess Wencheng (married 641), was the niece or daughter of the Chinese emperor. The temple house a sacred image of the Buddha, the Jowo Rinpoche, which Queen Wencheng brought with her from China as a dowry. This statue is still enshrined within the temple and is the holiest object in Tibet.
Today we will be visiting two of the biggest monastery in Tibet. In the morning we will be visiting Drepung Monastery, the biggest monastery in Tibet and the world according to some explorer. In the after noon we will visiting Sera monastery the most well preserve monastery in current Tibet. After returning to the hotel, Its advisable for the entire team member to prepare for the departure tomorrow.
Drepung monastery was founded in 1416; on the outskirts of Lhasa was once Tibet’s largest and most influential monastery, with over 10,000 monks. Today, Drepung houses about 700 monks and attracts pilgrims and visitors from around the world. Drepung is especially known as the site of the annual Shoton Festival, with its dramatic unfurling of a giant Thangka painting on the hillside. It was the home of the Dalai Lamas before the Potala palace was built in the 17th century. Resembling a heap of white rice from a distance, it was dubbed “Monastery of the Collecting-Rice” in Tibetan. The first floor of the Assembly Hall holds a striking statue of Dalai Lama XIII, magnificently lit by filtered sunshine and pungent yak butter lamps. Readings of the scriptures are often held here at midday, during which novices race one another to fetch tea from the kitchen for their elders. To the left (west) of the Assembly Hall is the kitchen, where butter tea is prepared and donations are accepted. The most revered image at Drepung is a 15m (49-ft.) tall statue of the 8-year old Maitreya Buddha (the future Buddha), designed by Tsongkhapa and housed on the third floor of the main building. Visitors are offered holy water; to receive it, cup your right hand above your left, take a sip, and splash the rest on your head. Several courtyards in the forest around the monastery are used by the monks for debating the sutras (Buddhist scriptures). The winners of the debates can take a test to earn the senior degree of Geshi.
Sera monastery is one of the great Gelugpa school of learning centre and famous debate session of monks on Buddhist sciences of philosophy, metaphysics, psychology and epistemology .The history of Sera monastery is strongly connected to master lama Tsongkhapa (1357-1419).
Today we will travel to Tsurphu monastery which will take about 2-3 hours from Lhasa. During the travel altitude will increase to4300 meters. When we arrive will be rest for some time inorder to get proper acclimatization and we will then visit to the monastery. When you arrive you will spend time acclimatizing further and visiting Tsurphu Monastery. Overnight at Tsurphu monastery guesthouse. We will encourage the team member to go for the Tsurphu monastery depending on if the members are acclimatization. The kora gives you a very beautiful view of the valley and the monastery below.
Tsurphu Monastery lying to the northwest of Lhasa at Tolung, Tsurphu Monastery was founded by the first Karmapa, Dusum Khyenpa in 1189. In 1263, it was rebuilt by the Karmapa II, Karma Pakshi. It is the main monastery of the Kamtsang Kagyu Tradition. This tradition is among the four major Dagpo Kagyu lineages directly deriving from disciples of Gampopa. Tsurphu has been the traditional seat of the Activity of the Karmapas. From the II up to the IV, all the Karmapas had visited China and Mongolia. They also taught the Mongol Emperors of China. In North China there are numerous monasteries found by them. They also found the place what the Manchus many centuries later called “Inner Mongolia.” Khochiti Khambo is the main Kagyu Lineage monastery of Mongolia. It is located in the Shilinggol District of Inner Mongolia. It was also a branch of Tsurphu Monastery.
A spectacular first day of trekking ascent up in a green valley crisscrossed with mountain streams. Be on the lookout for various species of mountain goats disguised in gray rocks. Several small nomadic communities camp here for the summer herding months, and you may have a stop into a yak-hair tent for a cup of salt butter tea or some fresh yak milk! Crest the ridge top four hours later, emerging onto a high plateau with a scattering of rock-enclosed huts, and look for a flat area for camping. From day one, the scenery is breathtaking; the landscapes are classic Tibetan beauty.
Have your first small pass, the Damchen Nyingtri, bear to the left at the cairns at the crest, and descend into a magical valley of lichen-coated boulders, meandering streams and expansive, powder-blue sky. Three hours later, you will cross the Lasar La and descend into the Yangpachen valley, with its wide open plateaus, spiky grass hummocks and tundra-like parched, cracked patches of earth, and head towards Bartso. The views of Brize (translated as female yak herder) and Tarze (horse keeper) are superb, and you will feel safe in the care of the local mountain god, Nyenchen Tanglha. Camp near Bartso, a drokpa (nomad) village of five or six houses, surrounded by the juniper used for incense all over the Tibetan world.
Leaving the village of Bartso behind, head towards a wide trail leading across the valley and over another ridge, from where you will be rewarded with views of Nyenchen Tanghlha (7111 m), the holiest mountain in central Tibet. Emerge at Tajung village, and then climb gently up rolling hills where young nomadic boys and girls picnic on the plateaus as they watch their yaks and sheep graze. The vistas are, again, just amazing! Mid-day, you should reach the small Djore Ling Ani Gompa (nunnery), near which you will set up camp. It’s possible that these nuns, some of the friendliest in Tibet, will drag you into the gompa’s tea-house and pass around a heaping plate of yak meat (use the bowie knife provided to hack a piece off) before getting into the requisite photo session.
Today walk for three or four hours, following the ox-bow Nyango Chu River snaking its way through the grassy valley, and head for Yangpachen Gompa. This old Kagyupa monastery, with Tibetan mastiffs keeping guard, overlooks part of the Trans-Himalaya range. Land cruiser will wait for at monastery, pick up to have a hot springs at Yangbachen, then drive back to Lhasa.
Yangpachen, world-famous for its spectacular phenomenon of hot springs boiling on the cold plateau, features all kinds of hot springs including highest-temperature hot springs, boiling springs and geysers as well as common hot springs, the area of which totals more than 7,000 square meters.
There are many hydrothermal wells distributed in the yangpachen hydrothermal area for generating electricity. And the yangpachen Hydrothermal Power Plant, jointly developed and constructed by China and the United Nations and completed in 1977, is currently the biggest hydrothermal power plant in China. The hydrothermal energy in the hydrothermal wells, transported by the pipeline, propels the turbines in the hydrothermal power plant to generate cheap and environmental electricity for Lhasa and the areas nearby.
The early morning in yangpachen is the most beautiful. In the cold morning, the hydrothermal fields are always suffused with white haze and the lake surface is always covered with great steam agglomerations, which is really fascinating and makes yangpachen a wonderland. If you are lucky enough, you may have a chance to witness the fantastic and splendid scene: the boiling water is erupting to the sky from the mouth of hot spring.
The hot spring in yangpachen, which contains high content of sulfured hydrogen, is therapeutic to many chronic diseases. The bathing place is an open-air swimming pool. The hot spring, the temperature of which is too high, needs to be cooled in two open-air cisterns before it is available for bathing. With the snow-capped mountains in the distance, it is really an enjoyment to have a hot-spring bath in the swimming pool. Especially in winter, it is very pleasant and romantic to enjoy the heavy snowfall by bathing in the hot spring.
Today is the end to the tour in Tibet. We will be escort you to the point of departure. You will see off at the point of departure.