- Total Duration:20 Days
- Trip Grade:Moderate
Kailash Mansarovar Yatra, a spiritual and life-changing journey can be accomplished via Simikot on Helicopter.
This is an 11 days trip where you will travel from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj and then to Simikot by flight and take a helicopter ride to Hilsa which is Nepal – China border. After crossing the border we will start a jeep drive to lake Mansarovar, perform a puja and take a holy bath. Next day we will drive to Yam Dwar from where our Kailash parikrama begins.
Kailash Mansarovar Yatra is named after two holy, spiritual and religiously significant sites: Mt. Kailash and Lake Mansarovar. Mt. Kailash (6,638m), familiar to Hindus as Kailash Parvat is the most sacred mountain of Asia. Hindus believe that the mountain is the abode of Lord Shiva and his family. Not only Hindus, but the mountain is also sacred to Buddhist, Jain and Bonpo religions as well. Buddhists believe that Mt. Kailash is the home of Buddha Demchok and Bon, a religion in Tibet believe that the mountain is the seat of all spiritual power. Another major highlight of Kailash Mansarovar Yatra (journey) is Lake Mansarovar, the highest freshwater lake in the world (4500m). Pilgrims believe that drinking water from the lake or taking dip or bath in the lake will wash away all their sins.
Kailash Tour via Simikot is an excellent journey to Mt. Kailash whereby we experience trekking in one of the most remote western parts of Nepal before entering Tibet. We arrive in Kathmandu and spend a day resting and preparing for the trip and fly to Nepalgunj, a city in the western Terai plains of Nepal the next day. On our Simikot to Kailash journey, we travel along ancient pilgrimage routes and trade links, trekking across the border into Tibet. Then the Tibet tour starts with a visit to the Garuda valley, a place believed to be the cradle of the Tibetan civilization during the ancient times when Bon religion was practiced throughout Tibet, long before Buddhism was introduced. Next, we circumambulate Mt. Kailash and tour Mansarovar Lake, both of which hold great natural, cultural and religious significance. The Kailash Tour via Simikot ends in Lhasa which is called the ‘cradle of Tibetan civilization.
- Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu
- Day 02: Kathmandu Valley Tour and with visa and trip preparation
- Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj: 1 hour
- Day 04: Fly to Simikot (2,985m) and trek to Dharapori (2,360m)
- Day 05: Dharapori to Kermi (2,860m)
- Day 06: Kermi to Yalbang (2,879m)
- Day 07: Yalbang to Tumkot (3,073m)
- Day 08: Tumkot to Yari (3,663m)
- Day 09: Yari to Hilsa (3,647m)
- Day 10: Hilsa to Purang (3,772m)
- Day 11: Purang to Monster (4,450m) and sightseeing in Tirtapuri
- Day 12: Sightseeing of Garuda Valley, then transfer to Darchen (4,560m)
- Day 13: First day of Kora: hiking to Dira Puk Monasterys (5120m)
- Day 14: Second day of Kora: hike to Dzutul-puk (4790m)
- Day 15: Third day of Kora: hiking to Darchen (4,560m) and transfer to Manasarovar
- Day 16: Tour of the Mansarovar Lake
- Day 17: Mansarovar to Saga (4,600m)
- Day 18: Saga to Shigatse (3,900m)
- Day 19: Shigatse to Lhasa (3,650m)
- Day 20: Final Departure
Day 01: Arrival in Kathmandu
Arrival at the airport, you will be transferred to respective hotels.
Day 02: Kathmandu Valley Tour and with visa and trip preparation
Drive to various historical and cultural attraction spots in the valley such as Palace areas, Swayambhu Stupa, Baudha Stupa, Pashupati temple etc.
Day 03: Fly from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj: 1 hour
After our short tour in Kathmandu, we take an hour-long flight from Kathmandu to Nepalgunj, located in Western Nepal. Nepalgunj, a town near the Nepal-India border, is also the gateway to Simikot, Humla. In Nepalgunj, we visit the local market, mini-zoo and nearby villages. Overnight in Nepalgunj.
Day 04: Fly to Simikot (2,985m) and trek to Dharapori (2,360m)
We take a 40-minute flight from Nepalgunj to Simikot, Humla District. We learn about the local people and their rich culture, which is closely tied to the Tibetans. We have lunch at Simikot and also register for the permit at the police office. From Simikot, we ascend for a while then descend towards the village of Tuling. xWe continue walking through jungles and villages along the Karnali River towards Dharapori. Overnight in Dharapori.
Day 05: Dharapori to Kermi (2,860m)
Our walk is on relatively flat trails beginning with the trail alongside the Karnali River. We walk along the fields cultivated mainly with barley, buckwheat, rice and potatoes. There are two hot springs near Kermi where we may soothe our aching bodies. We can also visit ancient Buddhist monasteries close to Kermi --Laikyo Gompa and Lhundrup Choeling Gompa.Overnight in Kermi.
Day 06: Kermi to Yalbang (2,879m)
Today’ trek is a flat and steep ascent until reaching a small pass and crossing a suspension bridge over the Salli River. From here one can enjoy views of the beautiful pine trees and the mighty Karnali River. We will also visit the remote Namkha Khyung Dzong Monastery. Overnight in Yalbang.
Day 07: Yalbang to Tumkot (3,073m)
We walk on a trail above the Karnali River. As we ascend further, the greenery begins to vanish and so do the smaller bushes. They give way to pine trees and rocky hills. After reaching Tumkot, we visit Dhungkar Choezom Monastery, one of the most important Sakya monasteries in the Tibetan region. Overnight in Tumkot.
Day 08: Tumkot to Yari (3,663m)
Today's trek is on a relatively easy trail above the Karnali River. After walking a few miles we begin to notice the change in climate, vegetation and landscape which becomes more rocky and secluded. The trees that you see are not pine trees anymore. They are now short and low junipers. Overnight in Yari.
Day 09: Yari to Hilsa (3,647m)
We cross the first pass of the trek today, the Nara La pass (4,620m). After crossing the pass we will be greeted by excellent views of the beautiful Tibetan plateau and Yari Village. From here on, it is a shaky descent down until Hilsa, a border town which is also a dropping point for the pilgrims on their way to Mt. Kailash by helicopter. Overnight in Hilsa.
Day 10: Hilsa to Purang (3,772m)
We walk across the Friendship bridge at Hilsa where the Chinese officials will check our permits and passports. We also meet our Tibetan guide here. We ascend from Hilsa to Purang and pass Rinzin Zangpo Gompa and Kangje Village along the way. In Purang, we visit the ancient Purang Gompa and explore the unique Buddhist frescoes of the 12th century. Overnight in Purang.
Day 11: Purang to Monster (4,450m) and sightseeing in Tirtapuri
On our way to Monster we pass through Rakshas and Mansarover lakes. After reaching Montser, we settle down for a while then visit Tirtapuri (4510m). Located northwest of Mount Kailash, the Tirthapuri Hot Springs are closely associated with Padmasambhava (Guru Rinpoche). Pilgrims bathe in pools fed by the springs, visit the monastery containing the guru's footprint and dig for healing stones along a one-hour pilgrimage route. After touring Tirtapuri we return back to Montser to spend the night.
Day 12: Sightseeing of Garuda Valley, then transfer to Darchen (4,560m)
It takes us around 2 hours to reach the Garuda Valley that lies to the southwest of Mt. Kailash. It contains mysterious caves, some of which have never been explored. For those interested in the archeological and historical sites, Garuda Valley will be a dream come true. After touring the amazing valley we move to Darchen, a small town situated right in front of the sacred Mount Kailash. Overnight in Darchen.
Day 13: First day of Kora: hiking to Dira Puk Monasterys (5120m)
Today, we begin our Kora of Mt. Kailash. The first day out of Darchen involves a six-hour hike in a deep valley through walls of red rock. We continue across the plain to Shershong. We further cross a bridge leading to Chhuku Gompa which is high on the hill visible from the valley. The trail leads to Dirapuk from where we will have a stunning view of the north face of Mt. Kailash. Overnight in Dirapuk.
Day 14: Second day of Kora: hike to Dzutul-puk (4790m)
Today will be the most difficult section of our journey. We climb Drolma-la Pass at 5,750m/19,910ft. The pass whose name literally means the pass of Tara is beautiful and is filled with five-colored praying flags. From Drolma-la Pass, we descend to Dzutul-puk. At Dzutul-puk, we come across the incredible Thugje Zinbu (Lake of Compassion) and a few ancient meditative caves. Overnight in Dzutul-puk.
Day 15: Third day of Kora: hiking to Darchen (4,560m) and transfer to Manasarovar
We gradually wind out of the valley towards Barka plain. After completing the holy Kora of Mount Kailash at Darchen, we drive for 2 hours to Mansarovar Lake. The lake holds religious significance for both Hindus and Buddhists. Overnight in Mansarovar.
Day 16: Tour of the Mansarovar Lake
Today, we circumambulate the beautiful Mansarovar Lake which has a circumference of 90 km making it one of the highest freshwater lakes in the world. The belief is that the Kora of Mount Kailash is completed only with a holy dip in the lake and a drink of its holy water relieves one from the sins of a hundred lives. We circle round Mansarovar by Jeep, and if time permits, we visit Chui Gompa, another attraction of Manasrovar. Overnight in Mansarovar.
Day 17: Mansarovar to Saga (4,600m)
Today, we have to accomplish a long drive from Mansarovar to Saga traversing through the sacred historic Chiu Monastery. We continue driving past Hor Quo and across the Mayum La pass (5,200m). While passing through, we will have glimpses of small towns like Zhongba and Paryang. This journey covers 270 km from Mansarovar to Paryang and adjoins Saga, 255 km away from Paryang. From Saga instead of going towards Lhasa, we drive along a different route to Kathmandu. Overnight in Saga.
Day 18: Saga to Shigatse (3,900m)
From Saga we travel to Shigatse via Latse. Our trail will be along the Tsangpo River in a region crisscrossed by the upper Brahmaputra and its tributaries. Upon reaching Shigatse, we freshen up and later visit the Tashilhunpo Monastery which was founded by Pachen Lama in 1447. Overnight in Shigatse.
Day 19: Shigatse to Lhasa (3,650m)
After breakfast, we drive towards Lhasa. On the way, we visit Shalu Monastery. Founded in 1040, Shalu Monastery is known for its beautiful and ancient mural paintings. After the tour we continue to Lhasa. On the way, we come across the Karo La Pass (5,045m). Before reaching Lhasa, we also cross the Khamba La Pass (4,794m) with a brief halt to savor the beauty of the Yamdrok Tso (Turquoise Lake), one of the three largest sacred lakes in Tibet and the beautiful Nazin Kang Sang glacier (7,252m). Overnight in Lhasa.
Day 20: Final Departure
The Kailash adventure in the Himalayas comes to an end today. Our representative will take you to the airport approximately 3 hours before the scheduled flight.
Life is short
Life is short and we have never too much time for gladdening the hearts of those who are traveling the dark journey with us. O,h be swift to love, make haste to be kind.
The journey is never-ending
The journey is never-ending. There's always gonna be growth, improvement, adversity; you just gotta take it all in and do what's right, continue to grow, continue to live in the moment.
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Life is a journey that must be traveled no matter how bad the roads and accommodations.