Welcome to the hometown of Giant Panda! Upon arriving at the airport/train station, you will be met by your local tour guide, and then drive to your downtown hotel in Chengdu City. After the hotel check-in, you are free to take a rest or explore around on your own.
Optional Activity: go to enjoy an authentic Sichuan Cuisine dinner at a local restaurant.
Chengdu has three famous features - Giant Panda, History and Leisure Living Pace. Today, you will go to explore these tree features one by one. First is to visit the lovely Giant Pandas in Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, which is the No. 1 thing to do in Chengdu. You will leave your hotel early and drive about 30 minutes to the panda base so that you can catch up the great moments of pandas, such as feeding, playing, climbing tree, etc. There are different enclosures for pages of different ages, such as all around to see baby pandas, 1 year-old pandas, teenage pandas, and older pandas. Beautiful walking paths will lead you to visit the enclosures from one to next. Enjoy the happy time with pandas.
The second place to visit is the sacred Wenshu Temple which is hidden peacefully among the modern mansions. This temple is the most popular Buddhist temple in Chengdu region. It has beautiful traditional ancient architecture. The atmosphere is calm and quiet, some people are praying. There is a little garden and the monastery is very colorful and decorated.
Lastly, you are going to explore the leisure living peace of locals at Renmin Park and Jinli Street. Renmin Park, or People’s Park is the place for locals to go for a relaxing walk, meet friends, or have a cup of tea. While Jinli is the “street of tourists”. You can wander on the traditional old street to absorb the special atmosphere of Chengdu, taste local snacks, watching a performance, etc.
Optional Recommended Night Activity: watch an fascinating show of traditional Sichuan Opera & Face Changing Performance in a local theatre.
Today, you will visit the Dufu Thatched Cottage which is a museum in honor of Dufu (712 -770 AD), who was the greatest realist poet and has been famed as the Sage of Poetry.After lunch, your tour guide will escort you to the airport for your flight to Xining.
After breakfast, drive around 2.5 hours to the Qinghai Lake which is the best highlights of your Qinghai tour.Qinghai Lake is surrounded by high mountains from outside. And on the foot of mountains it is endless beautiful grasslands. So you can enjoy the great views by walking, riding or biking. Qinghai Lake is the paradise for birds, which can amount to more than 10 thousand in the summer.
Cruise on the lake and visit the Bird Island in the lake. On route, you will also visit the Riyue Mountains (Sun and Moon Mountains) and the Ri Pagoda and Yue Pagoda which hich were built in Tang Dynasty to commemorate the intermarriage of marrying Princess Wencheng of Tang to Tubo. In nearby, you will also be amazed by the Daotang River which flows oppositely.
After breakfast, drive about 26km to visit the famous Taer Monastery.Taer Monastery is the birthplace of the Tibetan Buddhism master – Tsongkhapa who was the founder of Gelug(a sect of Buddhism). It is also famous as one of “Six Gelug Monasteries”. You must not miss the “three bests” of Taer Monastery – murals, barbola and butter sculptures. Taer Monastery is also a very important institute to learn Buddhism, Astronomy and Medicine. There are many Buddhist ceremonies organized here in each year.Get back to Xining city for the train to Tibet. Enjoy the fantastic plateau views along this highest railway in the world.
Witness the beautiful Tibetan Plateau with groups of nomads. See the Kekexili Nature Reserve which protects wild plants and animals as well as their natural habitates.
Once arrival at Lhasa, you will be picked up by local tour guide at the train station, then be escorted to your hotel in Lhasa city in a private vehicle.After arrival at your hotel, the rest of the day is free for you to explore the local areas and acclimatize yourself to the air, temperature and high altitude of Lhasa.
After breakfast at the hotel, we will visit the incredible Potala Palace – the highest palace in the world. As we climb to the entrance gate, you will have a spectacular view over all of Lhasa. After exploring the numerous interesting chapels and learning about the traditional culture and history of the palace and the city, we will move on to the spiritually significant Jokhang Temple, one of the most important temples in Tibetan Buddhism. To see the “real” Lhasa, we’ll stroll through Barkhor Street with its thriving local market where you can pick up some local Tibetan, Nepalese and Indian handicrafts and souvenirs.
Tips for Visiting Potala Palace
1. The number of visitors to the palace is strictly limited to 2,300 per day. Visitors can only visit during the time specified on the admission ticket.
2. Admission tickets to visit the Potala Palace are sold out almost every day, so it is strongly recommended to book your tickets several days in advance.
3. There are many steps at the Potala Palace, so it’s best to take it slowly to avoid possible altitude discomfort.
4. Visitors should respect the rules while visiting. Do not wear hats, wear revealing clothes or step on thresholds as these actions violate local customs.
5. Photography and the taking of videos are forbidden inside the Potala Palace.
6. A security search will take place at the entrance to the palace. Explosives, flammables, knives, lighters and even water bottles are not allowed inside the Potala Palace.
After breakfast, you will firstly go to visit the beautiful Norbulingka which used to be the former summer palace of Dalai Lamas in the ancient time, and now is a public park. It is famous for its Potrang, the private palaces of former Dalai lamas with grandiose Tibetan architecture style. Next, drive several kilometers to the western outskirts of Lhasa to visit Drepung Monastery. Drepung, in Tibetan, means “prosperity”. Since its establishment, Drepung Monastery has always been one of the most important Buddhist monasteries in Tibet. In its heyday, there were more than 10,000 monks lived and studied in the monastery. Throughout its history, many important and famous Tibetan leaders used to study here, especially the Dalai Lamas. So Drepung Monastery is also respectfully known as the “Mother School of Dalai Lamas”.
In the afternoon, you will be taken to another famous monastery in Lhasa - Sera Monastery. It is famous for the spectacular “Buddhism Debating”. As a daily routine, the monks gather in a courtyard, and debate on the Buddhist doctrines with supplemented gestures, which is thought to be helpful to facilitates better comprehension of the Buddhist philosophy to attain higher levels of study. After enjoying the "Buddhism Debating", you will be transferred back to the city. The rest time is your own free time to rest.
Want to explore some other features of Tibet instead of the monasteries? Let's take an exciting trip to the holy lake Namtso which is about 5 hours driving from Lhasa City. You will arrive at Namtso Lake around the early afternoon. Take some rest and throw yourself into the incredible landscape of holy lake.
Namtso Lake is the highest saltwater lake in the world with an altitude of 4718 meters, also the second largest saltwater lake in China (after the Qinghai Lake). It’s quite common for tourists who are awestruck at the Namtso at the first sight. With the snowy mountains in the background, the crystal-clear dazzling blue water, Namtso is stretching to the horizon. In clear days, the lake looks like a beautiful turquoise surrounded by magnificent snow-capped Tanggula Mountains, and the lakeshore is green, wide and open, dotted with tents, yaks and sheep of local nomads. For travelers, Namtso is the ideal place for photography, while for Tibetans, it is a scared and magical lake for pilgrimage.
Today is free for you until your tour guide transfer you to the airport in time for your flight or drop you off at Lhasa train station.
Train ticket from Xining to Lhasa.
Private professional English-speaking tour guide.
Private vehicle and Luggage Transfers.
All necessary Tibet travel permits.
All accommodations, based on double-occupancy. Medium standard accommodation with attached bathroom on twin sharing basis. Guesthouse or tent in remote areas.
Meals noted in the itinerary as "B,L,D".
Admission fees and activity expenses, as noted in the itinerary.
Service Charge (the planning, handling, operational and communication charges) & government taxes.
Tourists Accident/Casualty Insurance
Sightseeing not listed in the itinerary.
Meals not listed in the itinerary.
Personal expenses such as laundry, drink, fax, telephone call, optional tour activities, etc.
Gratuities, tips to guides, drivers, bellboys, etc.
Excess Baggage Charges.
Single room supplement.
Additional tour service and/or activities.
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