Hike to Phabongkha – 4 Days

Lhasa, which means ‘the land of the gods’ is the heart and soul of Tibet. It is a city of wonders, the capital of the Tibet  and an autonomous region of China. For centuries this holy city has attracted travellers from all over the world with its beautiful scenery, cultural heritage and its mysticism.

Phabongkha is a holy hermitage for pilgrims as many great monks such as Guru Rinpoche is said to have meditated here. On the one day hike to Phabongkha Monastery, one of the most ancient Buddhist sites in the Lhasa region, you come across many different stories about its various shrines, whose most famous relic is the carved mantra “om mani padme hum”.

Skeleton Itinerary

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Lhasa

Distance (Airport to Lhasa):  60 kms/ 37 miles
Drive Time: 1 hour approx.
Altitude: 3,490 m/ 11,450 ft

Upon arrival at Gonggar Airport you will be met by our airport representative. Drive from airport to Lhasa and transfer to the hotel as booked. Rest of the day will be free for acclimatization.

Overnight at Hotel [-/-/-]

Day 2: In Lhasa

Visit Potala, Jokhang, Barkhor and Norbulinka
Potala Palace: Potala Palace, the chief residence of the Dalai Lama since the 7th century has been the focus of the travellers for centuries. It is the cardinal landmark and a structure of massive proportion. It symbolizes Tibetan Buddhism and its role in the traditional administration of Tibet.

Norbulingka means ‘Treasure Park’ in Tibetan and is situated in the western suburb of Lhasa city, on the bank of the Kyichu river, about one kilometer southwest of the Potala Palace. It is the biggest man-made garden in Tibet. Jokhang temple also houses many invaluable cultural relics. Every year, the Great Prayer Festival is held here.

Visit Barkhor street, the oldest street in Lhasa that runs through the center of the old city. It is a circular street where Tibetan culture, economy, religion and arts assemble.

Overnight at Hotel [B/-/-]

Day 3: Hike to Phabongkha Monastery

Hike Duration: 1 hour approx.

Visit Sera and Drepung Monastery.
Founded in 1419, Sera monastery is one of the “great three” Gelukpa university monasteries in Tibet. 5km north of Lhasa, the Sera Monastery’s setting is one of the prettiest in Lhasa. The Drepung Monastery houses many cultural relics, making it more beautiful and giving it more historical significance.

From the Sera monastery we start our hike to Phabongkha. The walk beginning from the first left turn of the military hospital is pretty straightforward. After a while, a T-junction approaches where you need to make a right turn.  Perched on a granite boulder to the left you will see the Phabongkha monastery whereas on the right is the Chupsang nunnery.

Phabongkha Monastery was built in the 7th century by King Songtsen Gampo and it is famous because the Tibetan king Trisong Detsen, Guru Rinpoche and Tibet’s first seven monks all meditated here at various times.  Further inside the monastery, you will come across holy buildings like Rigsum Gonpo temple, Palden Lhamo cave, Pabonka Potrang, and Jasa Podrang or temple of Princess Wencheng.

You can also make an additional visit to the Chupsang nunnery and the Choling hermitage which provides good views. Many pilgrims drink the holy spring water before making a kora of the hermitage.

Later drive back to the hotel.

Overnight at Hotel [B/-/-]

Day 4: Final Departure

After breakfast at the hotel, transfer to the airport for your onward journey.
Trip Ends

Destination Tibet
Trip Duration 4 Days
Arrival In Lhasa
Departure From Lhasa
Meals Bed & breakfast basis
Best Season February – May/ September – November
Activity Hike
Grade Easy
Includes •    Arrival and departure transfers by private vehicle
•    Meet and assist by our representative at airport
•    3 nights’ hotel accommodation in Lhasa in a twin sharing room on bed and breakfast basis
•    All entrance and monument fee as indicated in the program
•    All the sightseeing tour in Tibet will be provided as per the program with local English speaking Tibetan guide
•    All necessary transfer by private vehicle
•    Tibet travel permit
Excludes •    International airfare & taxes
•    Chinese visa fee
•    Meals are not mentioned in itinerary
•    Items of personal nature such as bar bills, alcoholic beverages, laundry, telephone calls, extra mileage, personal gratuities as tips to guide, porters, drivers etc
•    Personal insurance policy – suggested a comprehensive travel insurance covering tour and flight cancellations, loss of valuables, thefts, illness, accidents and hospitalization; and most of all Emergency Helicopter Evacuation
•    Expenses incurred by re-routing, inclement weather, floods, famine, political disruptions, strikes, riots and other disturbances
•    Any items and services that are not mentioned on cost inclusions