Mt. Kailash and Manasarovar

Mt. Kailash and Manasarovar

Mt. Kailash

Mt Kailash, 6714m high, is also called Kang Rinpoche or ‘The precious Jewel of the Snow’. Four major religions revere this mountain. Hindus consider it as the abode of Lord Shiva. Buddhists consider it as the manifestation of Sakyamuni, the Buddha. For the Jainis, this is the place of their first saint Adinath’s emancipation. For Bons, the followers of pre-Buddhist religion of Tibet, their founder saint Shenrab is said to have descended on its peak. Mt. Kailash also known as Mt. Meru, is referred to as the navel of the earth. Four great rivers flow within a radius of 50 kms in four different directions. To the South is the sapphire face from where flows the Karnali, from the West flows the Sutlej, from the gold face on the North flows the Indus and eastwards flows the Brahmaputra, locally known as Yarlang Sangpo.

Mansarovar

Mansarovar is what remains of the Lake Tethys, considered the source of all creation. As the legend goes, Brahma created this lake for his meditation. Literally speaking it is manas+sarovar. ‘Manas’ refers to the mind of the God Brahma, the lake being its outward manifestation. The lake is at a height of 4560m with a circumference of 80 km, which can be trekked in about three days. It has a depth of 300 feet and covers an area of 320 sq kms. It is amongst the highest fresh water bodies in the world. It is believed that Sapta rishis come to bathe every morning in this lake between 3 to 5 am and this time is called 'Brahmamuhurta'. According to a legend, Queen Maya was given a bath by the Gods in its waters before she gave birth to Buddha. Holy also to Buddhists, it was once surrounded by 8 monasteries. Lake Manasarovar represents the female energy of Yoni of the Universe, while Mt. Kailash symbolizes the male energy of the Lingum.

To the west of Lake Manasarovar is Lake Rakshas Tal. It is connected to Lake Rakshas Tal by the Ganga Chhu channel. In Buddhism, Lake Manasarovar, which is round like the sun, and Lake Rakshas Tal, shaped as a crescent are respectively regarded as 'brightness' and 'darkness'. Rakshas Tal’s salty water, a stark contrast to the fresh water of Lake Manasarovar.

Itinerary

(14 nights 15 days)

  • Day 1: Arrival Kathmandu
  • Take off for The Kailash Yatra!
    Arrive Kathmandu. Upon arrival, you will be met by our representative at the Tribhuvan International Airport who will assist you to transfer to your pre booked hotel. Overnight at hotel in Kathmandu.
  • Day 2: Temple visit in Kathmandu
  • After breakfast, proceed for a half day sightseeing tour of Pashupatinath Temple and Boudhnath Stupa. Evening at leisure in Kathmandu. Overnight at hotel in Kathmandu.
  • Day 3: Kathmandu / Lhasa (3650 m)
  • After breakfast, in time transfer to the airport to board flight for Lhasa. Upon arrival at Gonggar Airport, the group shall be met by our local representative and transfer provided to your hotel in Lhasa. The group will reach the Hotel in about 2 hrs. The first day will be spent resting to acclimatize with the altitude because Kathmandu is at 1200 m above sea level and Lhasa is at 3650 m. So it needs some time to acclimatize with the altitude. Overnight at hotel in Lhasa.
  • Day 4: Lhasa - Visit Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street, Sera Monastery and Norbulinka Temple
  • Jokhang Temple: The Jokhang temple, a massive building consisting of three floors and an open roof all filled with chapels and chambers, has undergone extensive reconstructions and additions since the 7th century, particularly during the 17th century reign of the fifth Dalai Lama. 
    Barkhor Street: The center of the old Lhasa, Barkhor is a circular street, which is the oldest street in Lhasa and remains very traditional. It is a place where Tibetan culture, economy, religion and arts assemble and a place to which a visit must be paid. 
    Norbulinka Monastery: The park was begun by the 7th Dalai Lama beginning in 1755. The Norbulingka Park and Summer Palace were completed in 1783 under Jampel Gyatso, the Eight Dalai Lama, on the outskirts of Lhasa and became the summer residence during the reign of the Eighth Dalai Lama.
  • Day 5: Drive to Shigatse (3900 m) - 350 km/ 7-8 hrs.
  • After breakfast, visit drive to Shigatse. Shigatse is the second biggest city in Tibet, 90KMs away from Gyangtse. Visit the famous Tashillunpo Monastery in Shigatse, seat of the Panchan Lama, one of the six important Gelupa Monasteries in China, was built in 1447 by the first Dalailama. Overnight at hotel Getsar or similar in Shiagtse.
  • Day 6: Drive from Shigatse to Saga (4640 m) 460 km. / 9 -10 hrs.
  • After early breakfast, leave for Saga (460 km. / 9 hrs.). Packed lunch will be served en route. Overnight at hotel in Saga.
  • Day 7: Drive Saga to Chui Gompa (4560 m) 478 km/ 8-10 hrs. drive

  • After breakfast, drive to Prayang for about 250 km, post lunch we continue driving crossing Mayum La pass (5200 m) and then drive to Hor Quo (4560 m). Here group shall leave its vehicle and the group members along with the baggage shall be shifted to battery operated Eco Buses provided by CIPSC as a conservation effort. Group shall drive to Chui Gompa by doing Mansarovar Parikarma by the Eco Bus.

    Today is the day of lifetime, as we will have the first sight (darshan) of Holy Mt. Kailash and Holy Lake Manasarovar. Stay in a guest house on the bank of Holy Mansarover Lake. Overnight at guest house in Chui Gompa.
  • Day 8: Drive to Darchen (4620 m)
  • After breakfast, it is a day for Puja and Holy bath in the holy lake. We will continue our drive post lunch by be Eco Buses to reach Darchen (4620 m). Darchen is located beneath the majestic holy Mount Kailash, a small town with couple of guesthouses and a few hotels as well. During the auspicious pilgrimage time, this place is flooded with Pilgrims with hundreds of tents/guest houses all around. Darchen is the beginning and end point of the Kora. Overnight at a guest house in Darchen. Theis a place from where your guide shall coordinate for all your yaks and ponies alongwith yak-men and pony-men / porters however you will have to inform your requirement for Pony / Porter while you are at Mansarovar.
  • Day 9: Drive to Tarboche (13 km) and trek to Dirapuk (4860 m) 7 km/ 5 - 6 hrs.
  • After breakfast, drive approx. 13 Kms. to Tarboche by Eco Buses, the trek starting point of Kailash Parikrama. Tarboche is also known as the outer "Asthapath". The first day of our Kora is a gradual walk with multitudes of other local pilgrims chanting and praying. The trail leads us to few ups and downs till we reach our camp/guest house at Dirapuk (4860 m) 7 km/ 5 - 6 hours trek. Overnight at Dirapuk Hotel / Guest House.

    Those not feeling comfortable to continue parikarma shall stay back at Darchen and wait for the Parikarma group to return.
  • Day 10: Trek to Zuthulphuk (4760 m) 18 km/ 9 - 10 hrs.
  • Today our circumbulation (Kora) leads to much higher side of the holy path just beneath the Holy Mount Kailash. The walk will bring us to one of the highest point at Drolma La, 5,200 m. before descending to the gradual field towards Zuthulphuk for the overnight stay after 5-6 hours walk. Zuthulphuk (4760 m) 18 km/ 9 - 10 hrs. 
    After early breakfast, group will set off as the sun's rays break over the ridges above. After the footbridge the trail rises up a rocky slope. Take this gently but steadily. It soon reaches a level walk. The peak of Mount Kailash rises to the right and can now be seen linked to a long spur, which joins the eastern ridge. This is the top edge of the glacial valley from which the Lhachu ("Divine River") flows.
    This day is the climax of this holy journey & is the most difficult day of our journey. One has to pass through Drolma La Pass – 5200 m - highest altitude on this tour. Physically it is the most arduous day. At the pass is a large boulder depicting Tara, festooned with prayer flags. Here too Tibetans leave a memento of themselves such as a tooth, a lock of hair or even a personal snapshot.
    After perhaps 30 minutes, we descend a steep, rock-strewn path to the valley below. Just below the pass is Lake Tu-je Chenpo Dzingbu (Gauri Kund) i.e. "The Pool of Great Compassion". Take great care now because it is easy to sprain your ankle or worse. You must negotiate steep staircases down to a snowfield. The only way down is to jump from boulder to boulder across a large rock fall. On the ridge above is a formations known as the Lekyi Ta-ra ("Axe of Karma"), as though one's moment ripen in an accident, suffering or death.
    A final steep descending staircase brings you to the valley floor. From here it is still about 5 hours to the day's destination with no shelter in between. It is vitally important to remain on the right hand side of the river, the West bank. If not, you will get trapped, unable to cross it. The walk now becomes very pleasant and relaxing (as long as the weather is clear and there is no howling gale.) The path follows the gentle slope of the valley over grassy fields and clear brooks for several Kilometers before it narrows and turns further south to merge with another valley before reaching Zuthulphuk, the "Miracle Cave" of Milarepa. Overnight in Fixed Tents. 
    Meals Included: B, L & D
  • Day 11: Zuthulphuk to Darchen trek 10 km/ 4 - 5 hrs. and 8 drive to Saga.
  • Te morning can be spent exploring the caves and visiting the temples and shrine that has been built around Milarepa's cave. A married elderly couple supervises the temple, which is usually an active residence for over half a dozen Tibetan devotees, helpers, or relatives who continuously busy themselves with the tasks of maintaining the buildings.Overnight at Hotel in Saga.
  • Day 12: Drive Saga to Shigatse
  • After breakfast, drive to Shigatse. Overnight at hotel in Shigatse.
  • Day 13: Drive Shigatse to Lhasa
  • After breakfast, drive to Lhasa and the day is free to relax after a tough journey! Overnight at hotel in Shigatse.
  • Day 14: Fly back to Kathmandu
  • In time transfer to International Airport to board your onward flight to Kathmandu. Transfer to Hotel. Stay Overnight at Soaltee or Radisson Hotel in Kathmandu.
  • Day 15: Fly back from Kathmandu
  • In time transfer to Tribhuvan International Airport to board your onward flight from Kathmandu.
Booking

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