Kailash Spiritual Tour

Kailash Spiritual Tour

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Mt. Kailash, 6,740m is geographically placed north of the Himalayan barrier, wholly within Tibet. It has the unique distinction of being the most respected mountain, yet least visited of the world’s major holy places. The mountain is the supremely sacred site of four religions and billions of people. Because of its remote location in far western Tibet however, the mountain is visited by no more than a few thousand pilgrims each year. There are no trains or airplanes going to the region and by land there are only three, long and difficult routes. Even today, with rugged over-land vehicles the journey takes weeks, and you need to carry all your gasoline and supplies for the entire journey.

 

Hindus believe Mt. Kailash to be the abode of Lord Shiva. Among the Hindus, Shiva is a character of apparent contradictions. He at once, is the Lord of Yoga and therefore the ultimate enunciate ascetic, yet he is also the divine master of Tantra, the esoteric science that regards sexual union as the most perfect path to spiritual enlightenment. According to legend, immortal Shiva lives atop Kailash where he spends his time practicing yogic austerities, making joyous love with his divine consort, Parvati, and smoking ganja, the sacred herb known in the west as marijuana, Hindus do not interpret Shiva’s behaviors as contradictory however, but rather see in him a deity who has wisely integrated the extremes of human nature and thus transcended attachment to any particular, and limited, way of being. For a Hindu, to make the arduous pilgrimage to Kailash and have the darshan (divine view) of Shiva’s abode is to attain release from the clutches of ignorance and delusion.

 

Given its widespread reverence as a sacred site, pilgrims from Nepal, India and Tibet have been making the strenuous journey to Kailash for more than two centuries. With almost no infrastructure in the region, pilgrims need to bring their own transportation and all food and supplies needed for the craggy journey. In addition, the pilgrimage is quite expensive.

 

To complete the Kailash pilgrimage one should bath in the sacred Lake Manasarovar, stunningly set on the Tibetan plateau bordered by the majestic Gurla Mandata. On the journey to Mt. Kailash across the windswept Tibetan plateau, you will see cliff-top monasteries, wild-looking but hardy and hospitable Tibetans, yak caravans journeying over snowy passes, and the great peaks of the Himalaya with a foreground of grazing herds, yak skin tents and a glittering turquoise lake. On this expertly guided overland holy tour in 4WD landcruiser, you get to explore colorful mosaic of Tibetan arts, crafts, history, culture, custom, tradition, lifestyle and cuisine and in the process attain profound spirituality. Further driving across the wide open spaces of the Tibetan Plateau brings you to Lake Manasarovar, before completing a kora around Mt Kailash. From there, you re-cross the vast arid plains before heading south to the Nepalese border and returning to Kathmandu.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: KATHMANDU – NYALAM. (3750m)

Our program starts from Tashi Delek Nepal Trek office early in the morning at 06:00 AM. We Drive down to the ancient little sleepy town of Dhulikhel; stop for breakfast and then again drive on to Kodari {Nepalese border} which is 114 km from Kathmandu & takes 05-06hrs to reach the border. Upon arrival our tour escort will help you to go through immigration formalities in the Nepali section and after immigration formalities a 05 minute hike to the other side of the border i.e. Tibetan section, you again have to go through Chinese immigration formalities and our Tibetan Guide will be on standby with 4WD Jeeps and supporting trucks to take you to Zhangmu (a Tibetan town which is a 09 km uphill drive from the border). there you will have your lunch and further drive to Nyalam (30 km from Zhangmu which is a 2 hrs uphill drive.) o/n in Guest house.

Day 2: NYALAM (3750M)

This is a day for rest & acclimatization to get us used to the higher altitudes to come.

 

Day 3: NYALAM – SAGA (4600m)

As we Head away from Nyalam, we drive further across Lalung La (5200m) through a perfect merging of breathtaking views, passes through huge turquoise lake, the Peiku-Tso with spectacular views of Shishapangma (8027m) as the backdrop, the trail follows a route that brushes past the Brahmaputra River. Further ahead, a river valley sprawls over and then traditional chocolate box villages come into picture frame. This scenically rewarding drive provides plenty of opportunities to get your video cameras into action. From then on, the trail winds towards the northern route. On covering 295km, you reach an elevation of 4600 meters. As soon as you find a suitable campsite in Saga, we set up camp for the approaching night or stay in a hotel/guest house.

Day 4: SAGA – PARAYANG (4750m) / 255 km – 6-7 hours drive

After an early morning breakfast, we get set on our way to Parayang, we come across Jeeps and trucks rolling down the wide valley following rivers and grazing herds of yaks and sheep. Far south your eyes wander to the snow covered peaks that seem so close, with lots of rocky peaks and sand dunes that give you an ideal idea of Tibet’s arid landscapes. Depending on the season, nomads and other mobile shopkeepers attired in their beautiful traditional costumes can be found awaiting your arrival with hot tea and other supplies along with a big smile from ear to ear…they welcome you warmly. We bunk out for the night in camps / guest house.

Day 5: PARAYANG – MANSAROVAR – (4560m) – 4-5 hours drive

Prior to your Mount Kailash tour and trek you have to drive crossways along 270 km distance from Parayang to Mansarovar. This route digs deep into the very essence that is Mansarovar Lake amid superb landscapes. As you near this incredible sacred lake, historic Chiu Monastery becomes visible on the North West shore of the lake. From this vantage point, you can even catch a glimpse of the majestic Mount Kailash. This journey stirs your spiritual emotions. We set up camp & prepare for the night.

Day 6: MANASAROVAR – DARCHEN (4560m)

The highest fresh water lake of a turquoise color is full of fishes and swans. Holy Kailash Parbat, Mt. Gurula-Mandata, & Lake Rishikesh can be found in its surroundings. The region is considered rich for gold and other mines, hot springs and hundreds of wild living fauna. We explore the Lake Mansarovar in the day & then drive down to Darchen which is a one hour drive. We then spend our night at Chu Gumba.

Day 7: DARCHEN – DIRAPUK (4900m)

Early in the morning after breakfast, our trek begins; you meet your team of yaks and Tibetan yak drivers who will escort you around for the kora. Further ahead from Darchen, you have to trek past verdant meadows and picturesque streams to Lha Chu Valley. The trail overlooks Turquoise River cascading over a narrow canyon with high steep cliffs. En route, the north face of Kailash comes into vision. The trail will approach the 13th century monastery of Dira-Puk. Visiting this monastery is said to be a kind of blessing experience gifted in your Mount Kailash tour and trek. Finally, you will conclude the trek of the day by camping at Dira-Puk / resting in a guest house.

Day 8: DIRAPUK – ZUTULPUK – (4790m) - 8 hours

Lha Chu Valley is a passing vista as you turn towards Drolma Chu Valley. Looking forward to the amazing Mount Kailash tour and trek, you ascend to Drolma La (5630m), the highest point of the trip. But soon after sighting breathtaking views of Thukpe Dzingbu Lake, known as the Lake of Compassion at the summit, you realize that this imposing and challenging ascent has indeed been very worthwhile and profitable. Several prayer flags can be seen at the summit. Further on, the trail descends to the flat fields of Zutul-Puk which houses a monastery and several fascinating caves. The caves at this locale are most popular for meditation; Milarepa’s cave being one of them with Milarepa’s footprints and elbow prints believed to be imprinted all over this cave of mani stones. As we continue our Parikrama, we camp at Zutul-Puk for the night & this is pretty exciting, adventurous and pleasurable.

Day 9: ZUTULPUK – DARCHEN – HORFE

Our pilgrimage trek concludes at Darchen and we drive to Horfe for our overnight camp/guest house. We feel spiritually satisfied after going to the religious rites during our parikrama & there is a deep sense of gratification as we wearily go to bed after a hard day.

Day 10: HORFE – PARAYANG.

After breakfast, From Horfe we drive back to Parayang and spend our overnight in camps/guest house.

 

Day 11: PARAYANG – SAGA

From Parayang we continue driving for another 255km to Saga passing through the dusty town of Zhongba and a few smaller passes. Overnight in camps / guest house.

Day 12: SAGA – NYALAM

You cross the Yarlung Tsangpo (Brahmaputra River) by a ferry, & continue driving 250 km to Nyalam. Soon after leaving Saga the road opens into a wide flat flowing plain and passes through huge turquoise lake, the Peiku-Tso with spectacular views of Shishapangma (8027m) in the backdrop. Further drive across Lalung La (5200m) through a perfect combination of breathtaking views, alpine meadow trails, picturesque hamlets and an abundance of wildflowers as you finally reach Nyalam at 3750 meters. Overnight in a guest house

Day 13: NYALAM – KATHMANDU (1400m)

From Nyalam, you cruise down to the border town of Zhangmu. From Zhangmu, it’s a hop, step & jump to the Friendship Bridge which spans the Bhote Kosi River and marks the Chinese – Nepalese border where you bid farewell to your Tibetan guide and driver and hike down to the Nepalese Immigration Control in Kodari where you will be met by your Nepalese escorts. After completing the re-entry formalities you continue the scenic drive to Kathmandu which, depending on road and weather conditions, should take about 5-6 hours.

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