Itinerary Summary : Kailash Trek
Day 1 : Arrival in Kathmandu (1,300m)
Your arrival in Nepal will be marked by the mighty Himalayas. You will shortly land at the Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. Thereafter, a company representative will welcome you and take you to the hotel in the city. You can also choose to explore the valley if you arrive early.
Day 2 : Free day in Kathmandu with visa and trip preparation
Today, we spend the day exploring the major landmarks of the Kathmandu Valley. We head out towards religious sites like Pashupatinath, Boudhanath, and Swayambhunath. Learn the myths and culture of these revered sites. The day shall also be spent on preparing visa and acquiring necessary permits to enter Tibet. Be sure to pack all your essentials too. Overnight in Kathmandu.
Day 3 : Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj (150m): 1 hour
After discreet sightseeing in Kathmandu, we will hop on a plane and venture out to Nepalgunj. A short flight takes us to the Terai region of Nepal. It is located near the Nepal-India border and is also the starting point for trips to Simikot, Humla. We can stroll in the Nepalgunj bazaar and learn the diverse culture here. Overnight in Nepalgunj.
Day 4 : Fly to Simikot (2,985m) and trek to Dharapuri (2,360m): 4 - 6 hours
Another flight takes us to Simikot and as we fly, we can admire the surreal mountains in the Dhaulagiri and Kanjirowa ranges. We arrive at Simikot, which is the headquarters of Humla. It is remote and has relatively lower standard infrastructures. The people here follow culture and traditions that closely resemble those of Tibet. After taking a quick break at Simikot, we march ourselves towards Dharapuri. Overnight in Dharapuri.
Day 5 : Dharapuri to Kermi (2,860m): 5 - 6 hours
Our trail is flat and it takes us along the banks of the Karnali River. As you move forward, we can see two natural hot springs. It is a great place to relax and rejuvenate the tired soul. After relaxing, we will visit the ancient monasteries on the periphery of Kermi which go by the name of Laikyo Gompa and Lhundrup Choeling Gompa. Overnight in Kermi.
Day 6 : Kermi to Yalbang (2,879m): 5 - 6 hours
The route to Yalbang sees a gradual climb which, later, becomes flat. We cross a small pass and, from there, a suspension bridge takes us across the Salli River. The trail is lively and provides is amazing views of pine trees and Sal trees. The Karnali River will keep us company during the trek. We finally arrive at Yalbang and there, we will visit the Namkha Khyung Dzong Monastery. Overnight in Yalbang.
Day 7 : Yalbang to Tumkot (3,073m): 5 - 6 hours
The road now takes us above the Karnali River and as we make our way through the green hills, the increase in altitude starts to affect the environment around us. The barren and rugged terrains now become common. We arrive at Tumkot after trekking for at least 5 hours. Tumkot is home to the Dhungkar Choezom monastery, and it's the most vital Shakya monasteries in the Tibetan region. Overnight in Tumkot.
Day 8 : Tumkot to Yari (3,663m): 6 - 7 hours
The trial sees a rather easier walk along the banks of the Karnali River. You'll start to notice a gradual change in landscape and vegetation. The trails are now filled with Juniper trees instead of the previously common pine. We finally arrive at Yari where we shall spend the night. It is a quiet Buddhist settlement that still follows the traditional methods of life. Overnight in Yari.
Day 9 : Yari to Hilsa (3,647m) via Nara La Pass (4560m): 5 - 6 hours
The road for the day is pretty tough. We shall initially head out to conquer the Nara La Pass which stands at 4560 meters. The climb is tough and the steep trail makes it even more difficult. From the other side of the pass, we can observe excellent scenery of the romantic Tibetan plateau and the neighboring Yari village. A gradual descent now leads us to Hilsa. This town sits on the border with Tibet. Overnight in Hilsa.
Day 10 : Hilsa to Purang (3,772m): 2 - 3 hours
We exit Nepal and enter Tibet on this day. As we cross the Friendship Bridge, the Chinese officials will check our permits and we will take a quick break at the border. The road takes us to Purang and we will visit the Rinzin Zangpo Gompa as well. Learn some interesting folktales at the Kanje village. At Purang, you will get to observe the amazing Buddhist frescoes that date back to the 12th century. Overnight in Purang.
Day 11 : Purang to Montser (4,450m) and sightseeing in Tirthapuri: 3 - 4 hours
The major landmarks of the day are the Rakshas and Mansarovar lakes. These lakes are highly religious and are associated with many Hindu and Buddhist myths. The road to Montser goes through these lakes. The destination for the day is Tirthapuri. It is a holy hub and there are hit springs there which are closely related with Guru Rinpoche. After visiting these sites, we shall again head back to Montser to spend the night. Overnight in Montser.
Day 12 : Sightseeing of Garuda Valley, then transfer to Darchen (4,560m): 3 - 4 hours
We explore the Garuda Valley on this day. It lies on the southwest part of Mt. Kailash (6638m) and is home to mysterious caves that are yet to be explored. Historians believe that this was the abode of ancient Tibetan civilizations long before Buddhism reached Tibet. After touring this valley, we will navigate towards Darchen. This small town resides in front of the sacred Kailash and is the final resting hub too. Overnight in Darchen.
Day 13 : First day of Kora: hiking to Dira Phug Monasteries (5120m), 5 - 6 hours
Today is the day that we shall start our Kora of the Mt. Kailash (6638m). The first day commences with a six-hour hike in the valley surrounded by walls of red rock. We walk on the plain towards Shershong. The road is filled with pilgrims and leads to a bridge. Crossing the bridge, we arrive at the Chhuku Gompa. It sits on a high hill. After crossing the monastery, we head to Dira Phug. It is a great place to observe the northern face of Mt. Kailash (6638m) in all its glory. Overnight in Dira Phug.
Day 14 : Second day of Kora: hike to Zuthrul Phug (4790m): 18km, 6 - 7 hours
The second day of Kora is considered by many to be the most difficult. We need to climb the dreadful Dolma-La Pass. The climb is very tough and the summit of the pass is decorated with many colored prayer flags. After conquering the pass, we slowly make our way down to Zuthrul Phug. The descent is made beautiful with an incredible view of Thugje Zinbu Lake. There are many caves as well whose existence goes back to ancient times. You can even meditate in these caves. Overnight in Zuthrul Phug.
Day 15 : Third day of Kora: hiking to Darchen (4,560m): 14km, 3 - 4 hours and transfer to Manasarovar
The third day of Kora takes us to Braka plain. After completing the Kora, we get on a bus that takes us to Mansarovar Lake. This lake has religious ties to Hinduism as well as Buddhism. You can even catch magnificent views of Mt. Kailash (6638m) from the Lake. It is believed that people who drink the water of the lake will reside along with Lord Shiva in the afterlife. We shall spend the night camping near the lake. Overnight in Mansarovar.
Day 16 : Tour of the Mansarovar Lake
The entirety of the day will be spent on touring around the beautiful Mansarovar Lake. It is believed that the Kora of Mt. Kailash (6638m) is only complete with a holy dip in the water of Mansarovar. People who drink the water of this lake are said to be relieved from the sins of a hundred lives. We circle around Mansarovar via jeep and we will make a short stop at Chiu Gompa too. Overnight in Mansarovar.
Day 17 : Mansarovar to Saga (4,600m) 495 km, 8 – 9 hours
Get on your jeep and enjoy a long drive that takes you to Saga. The drive stops at the historic Chiu monastery and later crosses the Mayum La Pass. We will go through small towns like Zhongba and Paryang along the way. After having a delightful lunch at Paryang, we further continue the journey. We need to cover an additional 200 km from Paryang to reach Saga. Once in Saga, book your hotel and spend the night. Overnight in Saga.
Day 18 : Saga to Shigatse (3,900m): 445km, 8-9 hours
From Saga, we head towards Shigatse. The journey is very long for today too. The road will go along the Tsangpo River and it is later crossed by the upper Brahmaputra River. We shall take numerous stops along the way. Upon arrival in Shigatse, we freshen ourselves and later visit the Tashi Lhunpo Monastery which dates back to 1447. Overnight in Shigatse.
Day 19 : Shigatse to Lhasa (3,650m): 265km, 4-5 hours
The road to Lhasa goes along the Shalu monastery which is renowned for its illustrious mural painting. We cross the Karo La pass and the Khamba La Pass. We can catch amazing glimpses of the Yamdrok Lake which is an important lake in the Everest region. The view of Nazin Kang Sang glacier is also enchanting. We arrive at Lhasa during the day and we shall spend the remainder of the day roaming its many places. Overnight in Lhasa.
Day 20 : Final Departure
The adventurous Kailash Trek comes to an end on this day. You can explore around Lhasa according to your flight schedule. You can do some shopping as well. We bid you farewell and hope to see you on your next visit to Nepal or Tibet.