Lhasa to Kathmandu Biking tour – Itinerary
Day 01: Arrive at Kathmandu airport:
Upon your arrival at Kathmandu airport, you will meet one of our tour leaders, reception and transfer to hotel.
Day 02: Kathmandu Sightseeing:
Full day of guided sightseeing around the Kathmandu valley including visits to Durbar Square and the temples of Swayambhunath, Bouddhanth, Guheshwari and Pashupatinath. In the evening we will give a welcome dinner with an entertaining Nepalese culture show. Overnight at Hotel.
Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Lhasa:
Morning transfer to the airport for the hour-long flight to Tibet. This spectacular flight, on a China Southwest Airlines Boeing 757, takes us right across the main Himalayan range and provides us with magnificent mountain views. After landing at Gonggar Airport and meeting our Tibetan guide, it is a further 2-hour drive by Land cruiser jeep to Lhasa where we will check into the Hotel. It's advisable to rest and take it easy for the remainder of the day due to Lhasa's altitude. Overnight at standard hotel
Day 04-05: Lhasa Sightseeing:
We will spend two full days visiting the major temples and monasteries in Tibet, to include the beautiful Sera Monastery, Drepung Monastery and Potala Palace, former residence of the Dalai Lamas, which dominates the city, as well as the Jokhang Temple with scores of pilgrims prostrating themselves in worship outside. We will also spend time wandering through the local markets and shopping for goodies to take home or to just take in the atmosphere of the square. Later you will have time to prepare your bike for the trip. Overnight at standard hotel
Day 06: Start the Lhasa Kathmandu Bike Tour:
Finally, your trans-Himalayan biking adventure begins. Our journey towards Everest starts with the Friendship Highway as it heads out across the plateau. We leave Lhasa and cycle along the Tsangpo River to foot of the Kamba Pass (3700 m). When you arrive at the camp you will find tents, latrines, shower tent and facilities ready. Overnight in tents (Total cycle: 85 km).
Day 07: Kamba La Pass:
Our first mountain pass. A strong uphill climb along a tar road of several switchbacks, reaches a summit lavishly adorned with prayer flags (4794m). After descending we continue alongside Lake Yamdruk, at the far side of which we set camp (4490m). Overnight in tents. (Total cycle: 55 km).
Day 08: Karo La Pass:
Leaving the beautiful lake behind, we cycle along the Friendship highway which soon becomes a gravel roadway, through a ravine and up to the foot of the Karo La Pass (4750m), where our tented village will be prepared for the night. Overnight in tents. (Total cycle: 54 km)
Day 09: Karo La Pass to Gyantse
A significant day on the tour, as we have to get up early to climb the high Karo La Pass (5010m). Around us we can see glaciers stretching down to 6000m and beautiful lakes. You are rewarded for your effort with a night in a top hotel in the city of Gyantse (3980m). Overnight at Hotel in Gyantse.
Day 10: Gyantse to Shigatse:
First we will visit the Gyantse Dzong and Gyantse Kumbum. The Dzong is a fort dating from the 14th century and the Kumbum, a large gold-domed stupa with several small chapels, containing an impressive collection of Tibetan Buddhist murals. We then head out on the highway towards Shigatse. Although today involves a longer distance, the highway is tarred and flat. In the afternoon we will arrive in Tibet's second largest city, Shigatse (3860m). Overnight at hotel in Shigatse. (Total cycle: 94 km)
Day 11: Gyachung Monastery:
We leave Shigatse and ride over two small passes and through several small Tibetan villages. We will cycle past the isolated Gyachung Monastery and camp. Overnight in tents at around 4100m. (Total cycle: 75 km)
Day 12: Gyachung Monastery to Lhatse:
The route leads us through picturesque valleys before the long route begins which leads over the Tso-La (4520m). After lunch we head towards Lhatse past the hot springs and camp about 10km outside of town. Overnight in tents. (Total cycle: 95 km)
Day 13: Lhatse to Shegar:
Today we view the stunning canyon of the 5220m Gyatso-La. On a clear day you will be rewarded for your effort with your first view of Mount Everest. After a 40 km ride through flat prairie towns, you will arrive in the town of Pelbar, often referred to as Shegar. Shegar, is a popular stopover for anyone heading to the Everest region. Today will be a long and grueling ride through the canyon. Overnight at hotel. (Total cycle: 75 km).
Day 14: Shegar to Pang la Pass:
Just outside of Shegar, we will divert off the main Lhasa-Kathmandu highway and head towards the world's highest peak, Everest. After passing through the border control point, you will be faced with 20km's of uphill switchbacks (42 hairpin bends in total!) before you reach the summit of the Pang Pass (5150m). Your reward will be some of the most magnificent views of Everest and her surrounding peaks. Enjoy lunch as you gaze over Makalu (8463m), Shishapangma (8012m), Cho Oyu (8210m), Lhotse (8516m), Everest (8850m) and several other breathtaking peaks. Then a 20-kilometer downhill follows to the Rongbuk Valley (4200m), where we camp. Overnight in tents. (Total cycle: 67 km).
Day 15-16: Rongbuk Monastery Everest Base Camp:
Now you should be at peak fitness and excited about the approach of Everest Base Camp. A bumpy road winds up through the Rongbuk valley until the majestic Mount Everest appears before you. We will camp beside the monastery with the unforgettable sight of the 8848m peak in front of your eyes. We will stay here for two days. On your second day, you can either read a book or get even closer to Everest by taking a walk, cycling or hopping on a donkey and cart ride to Everest base camp, which is 8km from the campsite. Overnight in tents (5150m). (Total cycle: 35 km)
Day 17: Tingri:
Leaving Rongbuk, we head back down the bumpy road and then take a "short-cut" into the mountains. Another bumpy trail takes us over a canyon and down into Tingri (4340m). Overnight in tents. (Total cycle: 86 km).
Day 18: Lalung la Pass:
This day begins with a 40 to 50km flat ride before lunch. Then we tackle the gradual incline of the Lalung Pass (4990m). From here you will feel like you are as high as the peaks around you, including Shishapangma (8012m). Overnight in tents in the valley between two passes. (Total cycle: 77 km)
Day 19: Cross Thang la Pass the ultimate downhill:
Today, we tackle our last up hill, as we cycle up the incredible Thang Pass to 5050m. You will be treated to breathtaking views of the Himalayan chain as you freewheel the most incredible nonstop downhill, all the way to the Nepalese border. You will be treated to breathtaking views of the Himalayan chain as you freewheel down.
From the town of Nyalam you will notice that the scenery starts to turn green again. You will cycle down past countless waterfalls and pine tree lines roads, with waterfalls practically crashing over you, to the border town of Zhangmu (2300m). This will be our last day in Tibet. Overnight at hotel. (Total cycle: 117 km).
Day 20: Back to Nepal
From Zhangmu we have to pass through customs and into Nepal.
Once you are in the Nepali town of Kodari the downhill continues for the next 50 km along some very bumpy and rocky roads. Suddenly it is tropical and humid and green again as you cycle alongside rice paddies. After you reach the town of Dolalghat you must climb up to Dhulikhel (1600m). Overnight at Dhulekhale. (Total cycle: 97km).
Day 21: Bhaktapur and Kathmandu. Free day for shopping, etc
What a wonderful way to end this trip – a big breakfast at sunrise and the spectacular panorama of the Himalayas. You will freewheel down through Bhaktapur where you can stop and see some of the town's famous temples if you wish, before we ride into busy Kathmandu again. In the afternoon you can relax, shop or go sightseeing. Overnight at hotel. (Total cycle: 35 km).
Day 22: Final Departure.
Note: Participants of the trip must keep in mind that this is an adventure journey that takes you into one of the remotest corner of the Tibetan plateau where many unexpected and unpleasant events may contribute to the need for a change in the itinerary. Depending on the prevailing situation, the itinerary can be modified to some extent after consulting with your guide. However, the date of tour conclusion should always coincide with the original plan.