22 days Mount Kailash and crossing Tibet Changthang tour

⇀ Shigatse
⇀ Saga
⇀ Manasarovar Lake
⇀ Mount Kailash Kora
⇀ Zanda
⇀ Guge Kingdom Ruins
⇀ Ali
⇀ Gertse
⇀ Tsochen
⇀ Namtso
⇀ Lhasa
Besides Mt Everest, Mt Kailash, Guge Kingdom Ruins, you will also get into the far northern Tibetan plateaus. This desolate ruggedly beautiful area is covered in snow-capped peaks, beautiful valleys, vast grasslands and has plenty of wildlife!
22 days
Natural scenery, Overland, Photography
Trip code
From CN¥ 20,200 per person
The 22 day tour of Mount Kailash and Crossing Tibet Changthang is an exciting trip that takes you to the areas that few travelers visit. Besides the top natural/religion highlights - Mount Everest, Mount Kailash, Guge Kingdom Ruins, you will also get into the far northern Tibetan plateaus Changthang. This desolate, but ruggedly beautiful area is covered in snow-capped peaks, beautiful valleys, vast grasslands/wetlands and has plenty of wildlife! This itinerary is just a suggestion and can be modified in any way.
Day 01 :
Arrival at Lhasa [3,658m]

Upon arrival at Lhasa airport or train station, to be met and transferred to your hotel in Lhasa. Have a good rest to acclimatize the high altitude for the rest of the day. Overnight at Lhasa. (B)=breakfast

Day 02 :
Lhasa City sightseeing, visit Potola Palace & Jokhang Temple (B)

After breakfast, you will visit Jokhang temple is the most sacred shrine in Tibet which was built in the 7th century and located at the heart of old town in Lhasa, the circuit around it called Barkhor street, which is a good place to purchase souvenirs. Then Potala Palace is the worldwide known cardinal landmark of Tibet. The massive structure itself contains a small world within it. Mostly it is renowned as residence of the Dalai Lama lineages (Avalokiteshvara). Both of them are the focal points of pilgrims from the entire Tibetan world, multitudinous pilgrims are circumambulating and prostrating in their strong faith. Overnight at Lhasa.

Day 03 :
Lhasa City sightseeing, visit Drepung monastery, Sera monastery & Norbulingka summer palace

Today you will visit Drepung, Sera monasteries and Norbulingka palace. Both Drepung and Sera monasteries are Gelugpa (yellow hat) sect monastic colleges. Drepung monastery was the seat of the Government prior to Potala, it was once the world largest monastery in the history with 10,000 monks hailed from different monasteries all over Tibet. Sera monastery is famous for its Buddhism philosophical debate practice, the clapping sound and aggressive expression of the monks are well worth to see. Norbulingka is the summer palace of Dalai Lama, you can visit the residences of different lineages of the Dalai Lama. The park is crowded with picnickers and traditional activities during the Shoton (Yogurt festival) in August. Overnight at Lhasa.

Day 04 :
Lhasa / Yamdrok lake (4,441m) / Gyantse (3,980m) / Shigatse (3,840m), 360KM, 7-8 hours

Morning drive up to Kampala pass (4794m), you will have a glimpse of Yamdrok-Tso and spectacular views of Holy Mount Nyenchen Khangsar in the distance, the turquoise-colored Lake Yamdrok Yutso is one of the three holy lakes in Tibet, the unforgettable vista of pincer-shaped turquoise water of the lake and amazing spectacle of Mt. Nyenchen Khangsar glacier from Karo la pass is wonders of the day. Then along the Friendship southern Hwy drive to Gyantse, visit the famous stupa - Gyantse Kumbum, the most stunning architectural wonder in Tibet. Late afternoon drive to Shigatse. Overnight at Shigatse.

Day 05 :
Shigatse / Sakya (4,320m) / Shegar (4,159m), 300KM, 6 hours

Morning you will be arranged to visit Tashilunpo Monastery and the spectacular tombs of Panchen Lamas, monks of this monastery are nice looking with their home-made traditional shoes. Then drive to Sakya, visit Sakya Monastery, which is the main monastery at Sakyapa, hike around the monastery northern ruins. Late afternoon drive to Shegar, on the way after crossing over Gyatso la pass[5200m], you will catch the first sight of Mount Everest. Overnight at Shegar.

Day 06 :
Shegar / Rongbuk Monastery (4,900m) / E.B.C (5,150m), 100KM, 3 hourse

Early morning start driving to Rongbuk, from the top of the Gawu la [5250m] you will see the spectacular Himalayan Ranges and its glorious peaks viz Mt.Makalu [8463m], Mt.Lotse [8516m], Mt.Everest [8844m], Mt.Cho Oyu [8201m] and Mt.Shishapama [8020m], climbing down through numbers of switchback bends lead to the dry valley of Tashi Zom and then to today's destination - Everest Base Camp. Rongbuk is the highest monastery in Tibet and consists of both monks and nuns, it is still a good point to see Mt.Everest. Overnight at local guesthouse (dorm bed).

Day 07 :
Everest Base Camp / Peiku tso lake / Saga (4,610m), 340KM, 7 hours

After a relaxing morning, then start driving down to Old Tingri, where you can see the mighty peaks of Mount Cho Oyu (8,201m) and Mount Everest in a distance, then continue driving along the frienship highway and travel off the beatean after Tong-la pass to a sandy and rocky land of Tibet, where you will see the stunning natural pieces such like Peiku tso lake and Mount Shishapa (8020m), nomads chasing herd of yaks and sheeps keep you wondering. In the late afternoon you will cross Bhramha Purtra River way to the typical Chinese and Tibetan town Saga. Overnight at Saga.

Day 08 :
Saga / Paryang / Lake Manasarovar (4560m), 500KM, 8 hours

Morning drive from Saga to Paryang, you weave your way through small dusty town of Zhongba amidst enchanting panoramic views, dotted nomads tents are mingled with their herds of animals on the open plateau. Pass numbers of villages and camps of Yak herders with the distance view of snow-capped mountains, cross the Mayun-la pass (5,216m), if lucky might see many wild animals at the plateau grasslands. Today our final destination will be lake Manasarovar, a lake of compassion, tranquility and bliss in Buddhism and Hinduism. Stay one night at the local guesthouse near Chiu monastery, where you can enjoy this holy lake and overlook of Mount Kailash.  

Day 09 :
Lake Manasarovar / Darchen (4,670m), 50KM, 1 hour

Today have a relaxing morning at the Lake Manasarovar, walk along the lakeshore and enjoy the beautiful sunrise in this peaceful land. Afternoon drive about one hour to Darchen, the beginning point for the following 3-day trekking around Mount Kailash. Check into the local hotel at Darchen and prepare for the trekking.

Day 10 :
Kailash Kora: Trek Darchen to Dira-puk Monastery (5,080m), 20KM, 6 hours

The first day's trekking is starting from the Sershong and a gradual walk with multitudes of other local pilgrims chanting and praying. From the valley, you can see the Choku Monastery up on the hillside. The trail leads to a few ups and downs till you reach the camp at Dirapuk (4,750 m). You will meet many more Bon pilgrims going in the opposite direction (Anti clock-wise) because Mt. Kailash is being worshipped by four different religions, viz Buddhisms, Bons, Hindus and Jains. Overnight at Dirapuk guesthouse or camping.

Day 11 :
Kailash Kora: Trek to Dzutul-puk Monastery (4,820m) via Dorlma La Pass (5,200m), 18KM, 7-8 hours

Today your trekking leads to the much higher side of the holy path just beneath the Mount Kailash. The walk will bring you to one of the highest points at Drolma La(5200m), and the pass is quickly descending to the gradual field towards Dzutul-puk for the overnight camp, Dzutul Puk in Tibetan means magical cave, this small monastery is connected to an interesting story of talent competition between Great Yogi Milarepa(Buddhist) and Naropa(Bon). Overnight at Dzutul-Puk guesthouse or camping.


Day 12 :
Kailash Kora: Trek back to Darchen, 14KM, 2-3 hours / Drive to Zanda (3,760m), 250KM, 5 hours

The winding gradually comes out of the valley and the river allows to follow in to the Barka plain, the trekking stops at Trangser Trangmar and your car take you to Darchen. After a short rest at Darchen, then start driving to Zanda, firstly drive along the Xinjiang-Tibet Hwy, then off the main Hwy after 150Km, go across a few mountain passes, you will see the magnificent Tholing Forest. Overnight at Zanda.

Day 13 :
One day visit to Guge Kingdom Ruins, 18KM, 40 minutes

Morning drive to Tsaparang Guge Kingdom ruins, in the vast valley of Sutlej river you can find ruins of ancient famous Guge kingdom among the remarkable sand-dunes, a number of temples are still intact and contain exquisite murals and decorative motifs, some are dating back more than 10,000 years, make a half-day tour at there. Then drive back to Zanda and have a rest or look around Zanda town. Overnight at Zanda.

Day 14 :
Zanda / Ali (4,280m), 200KM, 5-6 hours

Drive from Zanda to Ali, the 200km road will take about 5-6 hours. The road is equally scenic. Following the Sutlij river after the Guge Kingdom and turned north back into the clay canyons. Along the zig-zagged road up and cross over 3 high passes, you will enter the Gar valley flat where you will pass the new airport -Kunsha airport in Ali. Once in the valley join the tarred road, another 70km will lead you to Ali. Afternoon rest at Ali and your driver will recheck the vehicle for the following days crossing the northern Changthang. Overnight at Ali.

Day 15 :
Ali / Tsaka Salt lake / Gertse (4,450m), 480KM, 9-10 hours

Today you will start your journey across the Changthang, the far north of Tibet plateau. This sparsely populated region is the home to Tibetan nomads and plenty of wildlife. Along the way, you will have plenty of chances to see wildlife such as gazelle, wild donkeys, Tibet antelope and more. Today the driving is pretty long, about 10 hours in the car. 

Day 16 :
Gertse / Tsochen (4,680m), 257KM, 6 hours

The route from Gertse to Tsochen is quite beautiful going through scenic valleys with views of 6000 meter high mountains in the distance. Tsochen is a mid-sized Tibetan nomad trading town with a small monastery called Mendong. 

Day 17 :
Tsochen / Zhari Namtso / Dangra-tso (Dangra Yutso) / Wenbu South village (4,625m), 320KM, 8 hours

Get up early today for a sunrise capture at Zhari Namtso Lake, located about 50km east of Tsochen, a huge salt lake on the wetland, it is the largest water lake in Ngari but also the third one in Tibet. After continue today's driving to Dangra Tso in the grasslands, a holy lake in Tibet to local Bonpa believers. On the way to the lake, you will see a lot of wildlife. Check into the local family-run guest house at Wenbu South village, a village located at the southeast bank of Dangra Tso. 

Day 18 :
Wenbu South village / Dangqiong tso / Wenbu North village (Ombu) / Nyima (4,533m), 280KM, 5 hours

After the sunrise at Dangra Tso, set off to Nyima, on the way you will stop to visit Dangqiong Tso, also the beautiful village Wenbu north village at the lake bank. Afterward continue the driving to Nima county, on the way enjoy the nature of Changthang grasslands and wildlife. 

Day 19 :
Nima County / Siling tso / Palgon (4,710m), 340KM, 7-8 hours

Spend your last day on Changthang Nature Reserve, enjoy the numerous lakes on the way. On the way to Siling-Tso, you can see much rare wildlife. En route, stop at Kanglung Tso lake for a visit. Seling Tso is Tibet's second-largest lake and the world's largest black-necked crane nature reserve. Overnight at Palgon.

Day 20 :
Palgon / Palgon tso / Namtso Lake (4,370), 200KM, 3-4 hours

Today the driving gonna be very smooth going as the road is paved very well. It only takes about 3 hours from Bange to Namtso Tashi Dor. Enjoy the natural landscapes and beautiful lakes of Bamu Tso and Namtso.

Day 21 :
Namtso Lake - Lhasa, 250KM, 4 hours

Enjoy the stunning sunrise at Namtso Lake, then hike around the Tashi Do Peninsula and enjoy the breathtaking views of Namtso lake and the snow-capped mountain ranges around the lake. Afternoon head back to Lhasa.

Day 22 :
Lhasa airport / train station drop off

See you off at Lhasa train station or airport, the time comes to say your farewells to your guide and driver, end the travel.

Tour notes:

Please note prices are based in CNY.

General inclusions:

All required government taxes and fees.
If you have any questions please inquire with one of our Travel Advisors.
All required Tibet permits and domestic travel documents.
Necessary oxygen and medicine for the acute high altitude sickness.
Where possible 3 star hotels will always be provided, if the city or town does not have then the local guest house or monastery guest house will be provided (i.e. tent / dormitory bed, no private bathroom etc.)
All entrance tickets as noted in the tour's itinerary.
Guide fluent in English, Chinese or Japanese that is certified by the state tourism build and from the local community. (If your native language is not listed please let us know, we are certain we can assist your needs.)
Comfortable and clean 7/8 seats minivan for groups of 5 persons or less; for larger groups minibus and tourist coach are available.

General exclusions:

Personal expenses such as laundry, drinks, internet access, fax, telephone calls etc.
Tips for your guide and driver.
Meals that are not specified in the tour itinerary.
Optional Attractions that are not specified in the itinerary.
Flight tickets or train tickets in and out of Lhasa (Please note: We can offer you train and/or plane tickets in and out Lhasa from all cities within China. Please check the latest price with us via email.)

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Fri, 02/02/2024

I'd also like to do the 22 day Kailash trip

Arumugam Sinniah
Arumugam Sinniah
Sun, 11/12/2023

Hi, Good Evening,
I wish to make my dream come true to self drive my own car via China, Tibet and Nepal to India.
Is this possible? If yes, please provide me a quotation with listing of services you provide.
I will appreciate it very much.

6 days Picturesque Tibet tour with Nyingchi visit…
It’s so wonderful to view this scenery!

Thank you,

Replied by
Tagong grassland by July Yuki
Yuki Yi
Mon, 11/13/2023

In reply to by Arumugam Sinniah (not verified)

Hi A.Sinniah,

Thanks for contacting us! Yes, we do arrange self-driving tours via China, Tibet, and further to Nepal & India, we can help with all the necessary driving permits and documents. I sent a more detailed email earlier today, please go through the details and feel free to share your comments and thoughts.

I'll look forward to hearing from you soon.

Kind regards,

Venkatesh Sampath
Venkatesh Sampath
Wed, 11/28/2018


If I join a group tour in June'19 how much will be the cost?


Replied by
personal picture
Anita Fan
Thu, 11/29/2018

In reply to by Venkatesh Sampath (not verified)

Hi Venkatesh,

Thank you for your inquiry. This is Anita from WindhorseTour.
We regret we don't organize group tours for the 22 days Mount Kailash and crossing Tibet Changthang tour, which can only be a private tour.
If you don't mind, I would advise you to join in out 15 days Mt. Kailash and Everest Base Camp Group Tour instead.
I just sent an email with all details, please kindly go through it and let me know if you are interested in it.
I will look forward to hearing from you soon.
Best Regards,

Thu, 01/08/2015

If we join to group tour and start June. Pls show me cost?

Lycoris Yang
Lycoris Yang
Mon, 04/14/2014

Hi Francois,
Thanks for contacting us! I've already sent you an email with some details about your travel plan. Please check it and let me know if you have any further questions on it.
Best Regards,

Thu, 04/10/2014

I'm a single traveller who plans to do your WT-305 tour in July 2014. Could you tell me about the price, and the eventual possibilitiy to join an existing group ?
Kind regards. Francois BERSIER