Tour Spotlight

Annapurna Panorama

13 days from USD $2,399

Experience a wonderfully varied and easy-paced trek through the stunning Annapurna region, while lodging in quaint Track...

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Sample Itinerary - REF HIMALAYAS 86

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Day 1: Kathmandu

Welcome to Nepal and the start of your holiday! You’ll be met and transferred to your hotel where you will receive a welcome drink and a briefing about your trip. Overnight - Kathmandu

Day 2: Kathmandu

Admire the view from Swayambhunath Stupa, the most ancient of the Valley’s holy shrines, also known as Monkey Temple. Visit the large and beautiful Buddhist stupa of Bodhnath, adorned with thousands of candles made with butter. The unusual lights are said to aid meditation and are replenished by worshippers who donate butter as a way of gaining extra karmic merit. Then explore magical Durbar Square - a complex of royal palaces and temples, and the social, religious and urban focal point of the city. Conclude the day with a visit to the Pashputinath Temple complex which is one of the most significant Hindu temples in the world, located on the banks of the Bagmati River in the eastern part of Kathmandu. Overnight Kathmandu

Day 3: Kathmandu - Lhasa

Today you will be transferred to the airport in time for your flight to Lhasa. Arrive at Lhasa Gongkar Airport where you will be receive a warm Tibetan welcome by our representative at the airport. Transfer to Lhasa (approx 70kms), soaking up the wonderful mountain scenery en route. Check into your hotel and spend the remains of the day at leisure, to acclimatise.Overnight - Lhasa

Day 4: Lhasa

Sightseeing includes a visit to the beautiful Potala Palace - the dominant landmark of Lhasa. Construction started on the red hill in 1645 under the 5th Dalai Lama. This immense building it was both the residence of the current Dalai Lama and tomb of the former Heads of state. The Potala is full of elaborate art work and frescos that tell many stories. Sightseeing also includes the Sera Monastery and Norbulinka monastery - the Dalai Lama's summer palace. Set in beautiful grounds with fountains, chapels and pools. Sera Monastery is still a working retreat, 600 years after its foundation as a main teaching monastery and one of the three great Gelukpa 'universities'. Overnight Lhasa

Day 5: Lhasa

Another full day of sightseeing in the fabled city of Lhasa, visiting the 15th century Drepung Monastery, formerly one of the largest monasteries in Tibet, once housing 10,000 monks and bustling Barkhor Street. The highlight of the day is a visit to Jokhang Temple, the most sacred and important temple in Tibet and also the most captivating. There is an electric atmosphere as crowds of pilgrims travel around the chapels, praying and prostrating themselves. Overnight - Lhasa

Day 6: Lhasa - Gyantse

After breakfast depart Lhasa and journey to Gyantse. En route visit the Drolma Lhakang Temple, associated with the Buddhist teachings of Atisha (a revered Bengali scholar), and we stop at the elevated view point of Kampa La, to soak up the incredible views of the spectacular scorpion shaped Yamdrok Lake. Yamdrok is one of Tibet's three sacred lakes and according to local mythology, it is the transformation of a goddess. At over 72kms in length, with electric blue water and surrounded by snow capped mountains, it's an incredible sight to behold. Continuing your journey, drive alongside Yamdrok lake for about an hour to reach Gyantse. Upon arrival spend the remains of the day at leisure at your hotel. Overnight - Gyantse

Day 7: Gyantse - Shigatse

Gyantse - Shigatse. Today after breakfast, visit Kumbum and Pelku Chode, two of the prime sightseeing spots in Gyantse. Kumbum was founded in the year 1427 by a Gyantse prince. With a gold dome, and 9 levels, it contains 77 chapels. Pelku Chode is the Monastery inside the same compound of Kumbum. After finished with sightseeing of Kumbum and Pelku Chode, drive on to Shigatse (95kms from Gyantse), Tibets second most important city. Overnight - Shigatse

Day 8: Shigatse - Lhasa

After breakfast enjoy a tour of Tashilunpo Monastery, founded in 1447, it is the largest Yellow Hat sect monastery in Tibet and the seat of the Panchen Lamas. Tashilunpo contains chortens, temples and the Panchen Lamas palace. At its peak, Tashilunpo had more than 4,000 monks in its 4 monasteries. The monastery is a striking red, white and black Tibetan structure with a golden roof. Within the monastery there is a 5 story temple, which contains a 26 meter high sitting statue of the Maitreya Buddha, cast from 6,700 ounces of gold and over 115,000 kg of copper, making it the biggest copper Buddhist statue in the world. After the sightseeing and strolling around the free market, journey back to Lhasa.Overnight - Lhasa

Day 9: Lhasa - Tsedang

Drive to Tsedang via Samye Monastery. The Monastery was founded in the 8th century during the reign of King Trisong Detsen. Over the centuries Samye has been associated with various schools of Tibetan Buddhism. Continuing on to Tsedang, visit Yumbulakhang the oldest palace in Tibet. It was believed that King Nyatri Tsenpo descended from heaven to build this palace in 2nd century BC. Yumbulakhang is constructed at the perfect crest of the hill divided into three different components; the tower, the chapel and monks quarters. Not very far from Yumbulakhang, is Tandruk Monastery, situated at the road side. Enjoy a tour of the monastery and overnight in Tsedang. Overnight - Tsedang

A local fruit and vegetable market in Thimpu - photo courtesy of Tourism Council of Bhutan

Day 10: Tsedang - Kathmandu

Tsedang - Lhasa. After breakfast transfer to Gongkar Airport in Lhasa for your onward flight back to Kathmandu. Upon arrival you wil be met by our local representatives and transferred to your hotel. Enjoy the rest of the day at your leisure. Overnight Kathmandu

Day 11: Kathmandu

This morning there is the option to take a stunning scenic flight over the Himalayan mountains and enjoy spectacular views of Everest - the world's highest mountain (book and pay locally). After breakfast we take a short drive to Kirtipur, also known as the City of Glory. The well-preserved old town contrasts developed Kathmandu with its unpaved narrow lanes. Admire the amazing views of the Kathmandu Valley from the top point of Kirtipur. We continue to the historic town of Patan, sometimes referred to as Lalitpur, meaning City of Beauty, and admire the rich collection of temples and monasteries in the area.Overnight - Kathmandu

Days 12-13: Kathmandu - Chitwan N.P.

Kathmandu – Chitwan. On the morning of day 4 transfer to Chitwan National Park (upgrade to private transfer available), arriving in the afternoon. Chitwan is hailed as one of Asia’s finest game parks and contains many animals including elephants and rhinos, sloth bears and striped hyenas. The remains of day 12 and all of day 13 allows for free time for you to choose from the various optional activities available in stunning Chitwan National Park. Take a nature walk, a jungle drive, ride on an elephant or journey in a dugout canoe and admire the scenery - if you are lucky you may even see an elusive tiger! Overnight - Chitwan N.P.

Day 14: Chitwan N.P. - Pokhara

Chitwan National Park – Pokhara. Today travel onward to spectacular Pokhara gateway to the magnificent Annapurna Range, which consists of five mountains over 7200m including the Machhapuchare, which although falling short of 7000m, is one of the most extraordinary mountains due to its unique ‘fishtail’ peak. The local people believe it is sacred to the god Shiva and therefore is off limits to climbing. Upon arrival this afternoon, spend the rest of the day at leisure. Overnight - Pokhara

Day 15: Pokhara

An early start as you are driven to Sarangkot enjoying the views of the landscapes and mountains and observing local people, villages and farms. After breakfast visit the thundering waterfall known as Devi’s falls where the Pardi River, which drains Phewa Lake, enters a grottoed channel and sinks underground in a sudden rush of foam and fury. We then visit Tashi Ling Tibetan Village and Tibetan refugee camp, and a local school and monastery, and have the chance to pick up some souvenirs from small stalls and a carpet-weaving hall, before returning to our hotel. There is some free time to participate in optional activities. Overnight - Pokhara

Day 16: Pokhara - Nagarkot

Pokhara – Kathmandu - Nagarkot. Fly back to Kathmandu where you will be transferred to the Hill Station town of Nagarkot located a short distance from the city – Spend the afternoon to explore the area. Overnight - Nargarkot

The national flower of Bhutan - the Blue Poppy. Photo courtesy of Tourism Council of Bhutan

Day 17: Nagarkot

Nagarkot - Kathmandu. Hotel check-out and included onward transfer to the airport. We hope you enjoyed your holiday!