Ganden monastery is located roughly 45 km east of Lhasa, Ganden is a Gelek Monastery founded in 1409 by Tsongkhapa on the Gokpari ridge of Mount Wangkur. Additions in later centuries increased their capacity to support more than 5,000 monks. Ganden was dynamited to rubble during the Cultural Revolution of the 1960’s. The best time for the trek is from Mid-may to Mid-October. Summer can be wet but the mountains are at their greenest and wildflowers color the alpine meadows. Barring heavy snow, it’s also possible for those with lots of trekking experience and the right gear to do this trek in the colder months. This demanding trek crosses two passes over 5000m, connects two of Tibet’s important monasteries and begins less than 50km from Lhasa. It has emerged as the most popular trek in central Tibet.
Whether you are considering a short visit to Tibet or stopping by as part of an extended trip, the Classic Tibet Trip is perfect for you. As the commercial and spiritual center for Tibetans, the quintessential Tibetan city of Lhasa offers visitors a wonderful opportunity to experience Tibet.
Lhasa after a short over the Himalayan Mountains, we arrive in Lhasa, enjoy a welcome reception and rest. While acclimatizing in Lhasa, we will explore the city by walking around the Bhakor Square and Mingling with Tibetan pilgrims. We will visit Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple and Sera Monastery to learn about Tibetan architecture, history and cultural. You will meet Tibetan artisans with scholars to learn more about Tibetan folks arts such as painting, wood curving and handcrafts.
We begin our journey with a trip to Ganden monastery before heading back to Tsushe village, where we will meet our Yak and Yak herders to gear up for our trek. We will make here at Trushe in the view of our approach to Shuga la, our highest pass and peak of the trek, in the distance. Traversing the west side of the ridge from the saddle, you briefly get views of Hepo village up inside the valley and Kyichu valley to the west. In the coming days we will ascend to Hepo village, Yama do and Shuga la pass before descending into the Tsodup Chu Valley and Chitul Gang.
From Chitul Gang descend down to Palang Tsodu Lake, a small glacial tarn at the base of Chitul-la (5210m). From there we continue down at a leisurely pace through the valley and cross numerous seasonal herder’s camps. Blossomed scrub willow and rosebushes are abundant making the whole valley incredibly beautiful. The next three and shrubs are found here, some growing as high as 6m. Fragrant junipers grow on exposed south-facing slopes, while rhododendrons prefer the shadier slopes. The rhododendrons start to bloom early May and by the end of the month the forest is ablaze with pink and white blossoms. The wide and easy trail ahead leads us to Changthang, the first village since Hepo. From Nyengo village we travel to our lodgings at the Samye monastery.
We explore Tibet’s oldest monastery in the morning and then drive to Tsedang in the afternoon. We rest there after having a good meal and hot shower in the hotel. Next we travel on to Tsedang city in the Yarlung Valley. Yarlung is considered the cradle of Tibetan Civilization. It was from Yarlung that the early Tibetan Kings unified in the 7th century and their massive buried mounds still dominate the area around Chongye.
we visit culturally important ancient sites; Trandruk monastery, Yumbulakhang and the Chongye Burial mounds. Trandruk monastery is one of the Buddhist monasteries in Tibet, having been founded at the same time as the Jokhang Temple and Raomche Temple in Lhasa,
And dating back to the 7th century region of King Songstan Gampo. Yumbulakhang is the oldest building in Tibet. At least that is the claim for the original structure most of what can be seen today dates from 2000 years ago. It is more likely that is dates from the 7th century, when Tibet first came under the rule of Songstan Gampo. The Chongye burial Mounds encasing the tombs of the Kings of Chongye represent one the few historical sites in the country that gives any evidence of Buddhist on the high plateau, but the methods of their interment points to the Bon faith. The most revered of the mounds and the closet to the main road, is the Tombs of Songstan Gampo. It is the largest of the burial mounds and has a small Nyingmapa Temple. In Lhasa we will rest and have a free day to visit sites and local bazaars before our departure for Chengdu or other destinations.
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