6 days Tongren Shaman festival tour
This 6-day itinerary will take you to participate and witness this grand gathering of people and gods - the Shaman Festival in Rebkong by summer (from the 17th day to the 25th day of the sixth month in the lunar calendar). In addition, you will visit China's largest inland lake - Qinghai lake, where the rapeseed flowers are blooming in July and August. You will also go to the birthplace of Rebkong art and watch the local artists painting the Thangkas. The trip will end at the Kumbum Monastery, the activity center of Tibetan Buddhism in Northwest China.
Upon your arrival at the airport or railway station of Xining - the capital of Qinghai province, your local guide will greet you and help you check into the hotel. Xining's altitude is at 2,295 m. (7,530 ft.) above the sea level, it's highly recommended to spend the rest of the day to retire for acclimatizing to the high altitude. Stay overnight at Xining.
After breakfast, drive about 2.5 hours to Qinghai Lake. As China's largest inland lake and the largest saltwater lake, it attracts thousands of professional photographers to take pictures here every year. This plateau lake was named "China's most beautiful lake" by National Geographic magazine. At the same time, Qinghai Lake is a sacred place for Tibetan Buddhism, and many Buddhists from far away worship here every year. From late July to early August is the best time to see the vast golden rapeseed fields around Qinghai Lake. Every summer, the Qinghai Lake International Road Cycling Race is held here. In the late afternoon, drive back to Xining. Stay overnight at Xining.
Today we take you to Tongren County, where the famous "Rebkong Art" was born. Visit Wutun Monastery in Wutun Village, which is a small but well-attended Monastery. The Wutun Monastery has a history of more than 600 years, which is the most typical monastery with the most concentrated collection of Rebkong artworks. Then you will go to visit Rongwu Monastery, which is built on the mountain, the layout is patchy, the decoration is gorgeous and magnificent. In the Tibetan Amdo region, its scale, status, and influence rank third. Stay overnight at Tongren.
Today you will go to Sakkyi village and Lower Wutun village to see the most famous Shaman’s festival. From July 27th to 29th is the grandest and most lively time of this festival in Sakkyi village, and the participants also wear the most elaborate costumes. You will find many ceremonies and activities including ritual dances, drum beating, the singing of folk songs, etc. in the two villages. The most important part is the dancing played by the Shaman who is regarded as the psychic of God. You will also see the Mouth Piercing, Back Piercing, or front forehead cutting. These acts are not about blood or violence, they are local men's beliefs. And all the men are volunteering. Stay overnight at Tongren.
Note: Sakkyi village’s festival lasts from the 17th day to the 20th day of the sixth month in the lunar calendar, which is July 26-29 in 2021.
In the morning, we will take you to Langjia village to continue participating in the Shaman Festival. The focus here is the dragon dance. In addition to the traditional solemn ritual dance, the appearance of the mage and his behavior and performance pushed the ceremony to its climax. Afternoon we will return to Xining to visit the Kumbum Monastery. It is one of the six major monasteries of the Gelug Sect of Tibetan Buddhism in China, with a history of more than 400 years. The monastery is magnificent and rich in treasures, and you can feel a strong religious atmosphere when you come here. Stay overnight at Xining.
Note: Langjia village’s festival lasts from the 20th day to the 24th day of the sixth month in the lunar calendar, which is July 29 to August 2nd in 2021.
Your guide and driver will take you to the airport or train station for departure based on your flight or train schedule. If you wish to continue your travels, we are experts in tailor-made trips and ready to assist you in extending your stay in Qinghai Province or other places in China.