Xi'an to Xi'an

This special trip is run entirely on alternative transport and we do not use one of our usual overland trucks.

Starting in the magnificent historic city of Xi'an, home of the world-famous Terracotta Warriors, we will then journey by train to the enchanted land of Tibet and it's exotic capital of Lhasa.

After exploring the highlights of Lhasa such as its imposing Potala Palace, we carry on to the ancient monasteries and forts of Gyantse and Shigatse before reaching the northern base camp of Mount Everest.

We will then head back to Lhasa and fly back to Xi'an.

  • Duration: 16 Days
  • Guaranteed Departure: Yes
  • For lovers of: Local Culture & Cuisine, Historical Sites
  • Physical rating: Demanding
  • Accommodation standard:   Budget%
  • Traveller Tour Rating: 0%  
  • Your Guide: English speaking
  • Supplier Tour ID: PXX1/162949
  • Starts: Xi'an, China
  • Finishes: Xi'an, China
You will Visit
  • Xi'an
  • Qinghai Hu
  • Overnight Train to Lhasa
  • Lhasa
  • Gyantse
  • Shigatse
  • New Tingri
  • Rongbuk



Day 1: Xi'an

Border Information: if joining the trip in Xi'an, you will most likely enter China at Xi'an Xianyang International Airport (IATA code: XIY).

There will be a group meeting at 6:00pm in our hotel in Xi'an - please look for a note from your tour leader when you arrive at the hotel giving more details about this important meeting.

Please note that many of the options listed below will only be possible for those with extra time in Xi'an before the start of your trip with us - please contact the Sales team if you would like to book pre-tour accommodation with us to have extra time exploring Xi'an.

In Xi'an we will stay in a comfortable hotel with good facilities.


Day 2: Xi'an

Today we will head out for an included visit to the awe-inspiring world-famous Terracotta Warriors. We will have free time to independently explore the Xi'an on our return to the city.


Day 3: Qinghai Hu

Today we will take a short local flight to the small city of Xining in China's mid-western Qinghai province. On arrival we will make a visit to the vast and starkly beautiful Qinghai Hu Lake. The population of this part of the Tibetan Plateau is thinly spread and mainly comprises of Kazakhs, Moguls and Hui.

We will stay in a local hotel in the city of Xining.



Day 4: Overnight Train to Lhasa

Today we will board our overnight train to Lhasa - the train takes the 2000km-long Qinghai-Tibet railway, a masterpiece of railway engineering opened in 2006. The train takes us over the 5,072m Tanggula Pass (a crossing that makes the railway the highest in the world) on its spectacular and scenic journey across the mountains and the Tibetan Plateau, arriving in Lhasa the following day. Please note that there are several trains a day, so our departure and arrival times for the train journey will be flexible. 

Tonight we will have sleeper tickets on the train and will sleep on basic bunk beds on the train.


Day 5: Lhasa

Today we will arrive in the famous and evocative city of Lhasa, the religious, cultural and economic centre of Tibet. We will have free time to independently explore the city and soak up its unique atmosphere on our arrival.

In Lhasa we will stay in a comfortable hotel.


Day 6: Lhasa

Today we will have an included visit to the Jokhang Palace, located in the central Barkhor square and considered the holiest temple in all of Tibet. In the afternoon we will have an included visit to the Sera Monastery, one of the most important schools for the Gelug school of Buddhism. 


Day 7: Lhasa

Today we will visit the world-famous Potala Palace, once the home of the Dalai Lama and an iconic symbol of Tibet. The rest of our time today will be free to independently explore the city and some of its other important Buddhist sites.


Day 8: Gyantse

Today we will start our land journey through southern Tibet with a stunning drive over the Kampa La Pass (4,794m) to the historic town of Gyantse.

Estimated Drive time 8 - 9 hours ( on locally chartered transport )

In Gyantse we will stay in a friendly local hotel.



Day 9: Shigatse

This morning we will have an included visit to the Palcho Monastery in Gyantse before continuing our journey to Shigatse, Tibet's second largest city. On arrival in Shigatse we will have an included visit to the Tashilhunpo Monastery.

Estimated Drive time 2- 3 hours ( on locally chartered transport )

In Shigatse we will stay in a friendly local hotel.


Day 10: New Tingri

Today we continue our journey with a drive over some more high mountain passes to reach New Tingri (also known as Shegar), where we will meet the junction for the road to Everest Base Camp on the Tibetan side. This is usually a fairly long day's drive, but the stunning views and scenery make this one of the world's most visually fantastic journeys!

Estimated Drive time 8 - 10 hours ( on locally chartered transport )

In New Tingri we will stay in a local guesthouse.


Day 11: Rongbuk

From New Tingri we make the journey to the Rongbuk Monastery and Everest Base Camp.

The drive is not an easy one, passing over another 5,200m pass, but the views are sensational and (weather permitting) we should have excellent views of Mount Everest.

Once we have reached the Rongbuk Monastery, it is about a 2 hour walk further to Everest Base Camp (please note that this is the Base Camp from the northern Tibetan side, not the famous southern equivalent on the Nepalese side that lends its name to the popular trek).

Estimated Drive time 4 - 6 hours ( on locally chartered transport )

We will usually camp here in Tibetan tents which take six to eight people.


Day 12: New Tingri

Today we will spend some more time exploring the Everest Base Camp area before returning to New Tingri for the night.

Estimated Drive time 4 - 6 hours ( on locally chartered transport )


Day 13: Shigatse

Today we will return to the city of Shigatse. If time allows we may be able to detour to visit the 11th-Century Sakti Monastery, the centre of the once-dominant Sakti school of Buddhism.

Estimated Drive time 2 -3  hours ( on locally chartered transport )


Day 14: Lhasa

Today we will return to Tibet's capital, Lhasa.

Estimated Drive time 7 -9 hours ( on locally chartered transport )


Day 15: Xi'an

Today we will board an internal flight back to our starting point of Xi'an, where we will have free time to explore on arrival.


Day 16: Xi'an

    • Explore the world-famous site of the Terracotta Warriors, an army of 8000 life-size figures built to protect the Emporer Qin Shi Huang in the afterlife
    • Journey west through the lower realms of the Tibetan Plateau to the remote Qinghai Lake
    • Explore the Jokhang Temple, the centrepiece of Lhasa and the most sacred and important temple in Tibet
    • Visit the stunning Sera Monatery, and witness one of the fascinating debating sessions between the monks
    • Take a guided tour of the incredble Potala Palace, the former winter residence of the Dalai Lama and the most famous symbol of Tibet
    • Visit to the stunning town of Gyantse and Baiju Monastery
    • Stopover in Shigatse and visit to Tashilhunpo Monastery
    • Overnight at Everest Base Camp, crossing Tibetan passes of 5200 metres en route
    • 5% Camping - 95% Hotels
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Tour Highlights:
  • History & Culture
  • Overland Journey