Situated at 3650 meters on the northern limits of the Himalayas, Lhasa is the capital of Tibet – a fascinating city dating back to over 1300 years. Lhasa, which means “Land of the Gods” in Tibetan, is rich with Tibetan heritage. On this tour we will visit Lhasa’s cultural highlights, including Potala, the world’s highest palace and former residence of the Dalai Lama, and the summer palace of Norbulinka, adorned with fascinating murals depicting Tibet’s vast history. We’ll visit the city’s most famous monasteries, and get a taste of the modern urban lifestyles of Lhasa’s inhabitants in the surrounding neighborhoods and bazaars.
Day 01: Arrival in Lhasa (3650m/11972ft)
Upon arrival in Lhasa, get received by our local representative from either from the airport or the train station and get transferred with an hour’s drive to our designated hotel in Lhasa. It is advised to take plenty of rest for the remainder of the day in order to minimize altitude sickness. Spend the evening exploring the Jorkhang bazaar or explore the city at your leisure.
Day 02: Lhasa Sightseeing
Today you will be spending exploring palaces: First on your list will be the Potala Palace. The place of the Dalai Lama, a treasure of Tibetan culture was, till 1965, the seat of both religion and politics in Tibet and quite possibly, the singularly most important building in all Tibet. It was built in the seventh century by Tsongtsen Gampo as a fort and later renovated by the fifth Dalai Lama in the seventeenth century to its present specifications. Your next stop will be Norbulingkha – the winter palace of the Dalai Lama which was built in the eighteenth century.
Day 03: Lhasa Sightseeing
Today you will visit the Drepung monastery. This is the largest monastery in the world and once housed 10,000 monks and nuns. It was built in 1491 and the second, third and fourth Dalai Lamas lived and were entombed here. A visit to the kitchen of this monastery is a must. Look out for the washing machine in which the monks mix their butter tea! We then visit Sera Monastery – a preserved monastery of white-washed walls and golden roofs. Your next stop will be the Jokhang Temple. This is the holiest shrine in Tibet and houses a golden statue of the Buddha which was brought to Tibet by the Chinese princess "Wen Chen”. You then stop off at Barkhor Bazaar outside the Jokhang monastery. This is a bustling flea market and is the place to buy souvenirs and meet other tourists.
Day 04: Final departure
Leisure until getting transferred to the Lhasa Airport / Railway Station by our local representative for your onward journey.