Day 01 Arrive in Beijing (44m).
Our representative receives you at the airport, and drives you to hotel.
Day 02 Beijing Sightseeing Tour. Overnight hotel at Beijing.
After hearty breakfast we set out for full day sightseeing tour of the following locations of Beijing.
Temple of Heaven: It is a wonderful temple in Beijing, built in 1420 A.D. Its north part is semicircular symbolizing heaven and the south is square like the earth. The design implies that the heaven is high over the earth, and reflects ancient Chinese thought of "The heaven is round and the earth is square". The most magnificent buildings within the temple are The Circular Mound Altar (where people put their feet together and pray for long lives), Imperial Vault of Heaven, and Altar of prayer for good harvest (where people pray for good harvest). Also, there are some additional buildings like Three Echo Stones and Echo Wall. Almost all of the buildings are connected by a wide bridge called ‘Vermilion Steps Bridge’, which is also called as ‘Sacred Way’.
Forbidden City: It is also known as Palace Museum of China, which is located in the central part of Beijing. It covers 178 acres and to its south is Tian'anmen Gate and to the north is the Gate of Devine Prowess. It is a beautiful scenic spot with largest ancient wood palace buildings. Listed by UNESCO as a World Cultural Heritage Site in 1987, the City has turned out to be one of the most popular tourist attractions domestically as well as internationally.
Day 03 Beijing Sightseeing Tour Continued.
“The Great Wall of China” at Badaling: The Great Wall is a symbol of Chinese civilization, and the part in Badaling is the most visited section of the Wall. Badaling Great Wall has been promoted as a key national cultural relic and was enlisted in the World Cultural Heritage Directory by UNESCO in 1988. Badaling Great Wall is situated in Yanqing County, over 70 kilometres north of Beijing. It is the most well-preserved section of the Great Wall, built during the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644). This section with an average altitude of over 1,000 meters looks like a strong dragon winding its way along the mountain ranges.
Summer Palace: It is the largest and best-preserved imperial garden in China. Its Chinese name, YiHeYuan translates into 'Garden of Nurtured Harmony' or 'Garden for Maintaining Health and Harmony’. The Palace is located on the western edge of Beijing, close to the western hills, 12km from central Beijing.
Day 04 and Day 05 - On board Train to Lhasa overnight in Train.
It is the highest rail line in the world. It runs 13000 feet above sea level for more than 80 percent of the route and tops at a height of 16,640 feet. The trip takes about 48 hrs and covers a distance of around 4065 km. The route of rail line is amazing as it climbs from Golmund City at 9000 feet to Tanggula pass at 16,640 feet within mere six and a half hour. The “Sky Train” passes through the Qinghai Lake, The Bird Island, Chaerhan Salt Lake, Kunlun Mountains Pass, Tuotuo River, Changtang Grassland, Eight-Pagodas in North Tibet Pasture, Namtso (Lake Namco), and Yambajan Hot Springs. The train ride provides a very incredible experience through a vista of spectacular mountainous landscapes, the stunning snow-clad mountains, breathtaking deep valleys, delightful hill tops, exotic vast deserts or frozen lands, and the exciting and unforgettable sight of the Tibetan folklore. After crossing the city of Golmund, the train starts on a steep climb to Lhasa. This is the stretch where oxygen is released into the cabins. And if you still feel dizziness, you can request for a personal oxygen canister. Undoubtedly, this journey would be the most delightful of all as it takes you through sharp contrasts of sceneries in a fast paced train ride.
Day 06 Arrive in LHASA (3650m) by Train from Beijing ( T27), arrival time is 19:50 PM evening.
Upon arrival in Lhasa, after a long but thrilling train ride, our Lhasa Team will pick you up and drive you to hotel, where you rest and relax and get ready for another day of sightseeing.
Day 07 Lhasa Sightseeing Tour.
Potala Palace: Lying on the Red Hill in Lhasa City, Potala Palace is regarded as the symbol of Lhasa. It is noted for its magnificent construction, complex structure, pious atmosphere and delicate artworks. Originally, the King Songtsen Gampo built it in the seventh century and Fifth Dalai Lama repaired it in 1645. Its present size was enlarged by the thirteenth Dalai Lama. Gradually, it has become the political center in Tibet and the seat of Dalai Lamas. It is mainly made up of the Red Palace and the White Palace and covers an area of about 25 acres.
Nurbulinka Park: It is a very picturesque garden built over 200 years ago. The attractions inside the park include palaces, pavilions, villas and various trees and flowers. It is really a nice place to experience the Tibetan culture and art.
Day 08 Lhasa Sightseeing Continued.
Drepung Temple: Drepung Monastery is actually a collection of Buddhist chapels and colleges located about 8km west of Lhasa. The word ‘Drepung’ can be literally translated as "rice pile", a name whose meaning becomes clear when you see the white-walled buildings scattered along the hill. Originally founded in 1416, the monastery in its heyday was home to 10,000 monks (around 1600). In 1530, the second Dalai Lama built his palace here, known as the Ganden Palace, which was used until the fifth Dalai Lama built the Potala Palace.
Jokhang Temple: It is a typical Tibetan Buddhist temple, which bears an unparalleled status in the Tibetan Buddhism. Constructed in 647 during the Tang Dynasty, the Jokhang Temple was built as a memorial to the Princess Bhrikuti of Nepal and Princess Wencheng of the Tang Dynasty. As the oldest wooden complex of Tibet, the temple covers an area of over 25,100 square meters (6.2 acres), with four floors in the main hall and spectacular gold-plated roof.
Sera Monastery: The Monastery, which stands at the foot of Tatipu Hill, is located in the northern suburb of Lhasa City. It is one of the three famous monasteries in Lhasa, and is dedicated to the Gelugpa or Yellow Hat Sect (a branch of Tibetan Buddhism). The monastery was named ‘Sera’, which means wild rose in the Tibetan language, during the time when the hill was covered with wild roses in its inception. The monastery is magnificent and covers an area of 114,946 square meters (28 acres). Scriptures written in gold powder, fine statues, scented cloths, and unparalleled murals can be found in the halls of the monastery. Colorful debates on Buddhist doctrines are also held here in the monastery, whose style is very distinctive from those of other famous monasteries of Lhasa.
Day 09 Lhasa – Kathmandu.
Guests will take the most magnificent and expensive flight crossing over the Mt. Everest and other tallest mountain of the world. Upon arrival in Kathmandu International airport, our new team will receive you and drive you to hotel.
Day 10 Kathmandu Full day Sightseeing.
Swayambhunath Stupa, a very sacred religious Buddhist shrine, also known as the “Monkey Temple”, 3 km to the northwest of downtown Kathmandu, is a 2500 years old stupa situated on a hillock about 77 m above the ground level overlooking Kathmandu valley. Swayambhunath Stupa is a golden spire crowning a conical wooded hill. It is the most ancient and enigmatic of all the holy shrines in Kathmandu Valley. It has a lofty white dome and a glittering golden spire that are visible from all sides of the valley. Historical records found on a stone inscription give evidence that the stupa was already an important Buddhist pilgrimage destination by the 5th century A.D.
Patan Durbar Square complex, situated in the center of Patan city, also known as Lalitpur, houses the residence of the former Patan royal family. It is one of the ten UNESCO World Heritage Site of the country. Patan Square and its surroundings are good specimen of ancient Newari architecture. There are three main courtyards in the palace: Mul Chowk, Sundari Chowk and Keshav Narayan Chowk. Mul Chowk, the oldest one, is at the centre of Patan square.Several multi-sized and multi-styled temples occupy the western part of the complex. Main among these are ‘Krishna Temple’, ‘Bhimsen Temple’ and the Golden Temple of ‘Hiranya Varna’. Krishna Temple, which is the temple of red stone, is dedicated to Hindu ‘Lord Krishna’. It was erected in the 17th century, considered to be the first one to be constructed in Shikara architecture, holds a commanding position in the durbar square. The temple is compared with sacred ‘Mount Meru’, which is abode of the god Shiva according to Hindu scriptures. There is ‘Mahaboudha’, a Buddhist temple made of clay bricks, lies to the east of the Durbar Square. With Hundreds of Buddha images engraved in the bricks, Mahaboudha is known for its fine terra cota work.
Kathmandu Durbar Square lies in the heart of the capital, popularly known as the ‘Hanuman Dhoka Palace’ - the Gateway of Hanuman (God of monkey) - an ancient seat of Nepalese Royalty. The Palace, constructed from the 15th – 18th centuries, consists of the huge Royal square imposing a tremendous variety of the temples dedicated to different Hindu Gods and Goddesses including Taleju Temple, Sweta & Black Bhairab, Kumari (The living goddess), along with Basantapur tower. Listed as one of the ten UNESCO Cultural World Heritage Site, Kathmandu Durbar Square is a cluster of ancient temples, palaces, courtyards and streets that date back to the 12th and 18th centuries. It is widely known as a social, religious and urban focal point of the Capital City with elaborately carved wooden windows and panels. It used to be a royal Nepalese residence until the 19th century and is the site of important ceremonies and festivals of the nation. It also houses famous royal museum like The King Tribhuwan Memorial Museum and The Mahendra Museum.
Day 11 Kathmandu Full day Sightseeing.
In the early morning we go to the airport for the Mountain Flight after which we visit to the locations listed below for sightseeing tours.
Everest Mountain Flight are offered by different Domestic Airlines in Kathmandu Valley. This one hour thrilling flight takes you to the Eastern Himalayan Ranges of Nepal, some of the highest peaks in the world. This breathtaking flight gives the best opportunity to get the closest and magnificent view of Mount Everest (8,850m) and other tallest mountains - Shisa Pangma (8,013m), Gauri Shanker (7134m), Melungtse (7023m), Cho Oyu (8201m), Pumori (8171m), Nuptse (7855m), Lhotse (8516m) & Amadablam (6856m). The flights are operated every morning from Kathmandu airport, flies in the altitude of 5000 – 7000 meters, and gets closer approximately five nautical miles from the highest peak of the world. Passengers are provided with individual window seats during the entire nerve tingling flight. Interested passengers are also invited to the cockpit from where they can take some spectacular pictures of the world’s tallest mountains. All passengers are certified with a formal Certificate of their travel.
Baudhanath Stupa, 6 km east of downtown Kathmandu, is 36m high, built around the 5th century A.D., is one of the biggest and the oldest Buddhist shrine in the world. It is unique with its three level, mandala style, platforms. What Mecca is to the Muslims, this Boudhanath Stupa is for Tibetan Buddhists. Every year thousands of pilgrims flock here from all over the Himalayan region to pay their tribute with great reverance to all Buddhist deities. The Stupa is recognized with the prestigious status of UNESCO World Heritage Site. In Buddhanath Stupa, there are many monasteries or Gompa attractions all impressively adorned and colorfully painted.
Pashupatinath, 5 km east of downtown Kathmandu along the side of Bagmati river, is the famous and biggest holiest temple of Hindus dedicated solely to Lord Shiva. Pashupatinath Temple, which is regarded as the most sacred temple of Hindu Lord Shiva in the world, stands as a symbol of faith, religion, culture and tradition. Its astonishing architectural existence dates back to 400 A.D. It is one of the largest Hindu temple complexes in South-Asia with hundreds of Shiva Lingam shrines and icons of Hindu Gods and Goddesses. Hindu pilgrims perform sacred rituals with the thrilling scene of burning funeral pyres. During the Shivaratri festival (February – March), over 200 thousand devotees and pilgrims, mostly from India, visit this temple and make ceremonial fires. The Temple is recognized with the prestigious status of UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Bhaktapur Durbar Square is an assortment of pagoda and shikhara-style-temples grouped around a fifty-five-window-palace of brick and wood. The square is part of a charming valley as it highlights the idols of ancient kings perched on top of stone monoliths and the guardian deities looking out from their sanctuaries. It has also been accorded with a prestigious status of UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Square also accommodates beautifully crafted Lion Gate, the massive gate that dates back to 1696 AD, which is guarded by two huge statues of lions at the either side of the gate with the dreadful stone image of Lord Shiva. Another masterpiece The Golden Gate is said to be the most beautiful and richly molded specimen of its kind in the entire world. As you go through inside the Golden Gate, one can see the brick walls with their gracious setting and sculptural design until reaching a balcony with fifty-five windows carved beautifully in a wood. South of Palace, there stands a beautiful Nyatapola, the most famous pagoda of Nepal, consists of five tiers symbolizing each basic elements of the universe - water, earth, fire, wind and sky.
Cultural Dance Program with Dinner: In the evening you are invited to a typical but fascinating Nepali cultural folk dance program with an authentic Nepali dinner served with unique Newari cuisines. The culture of Nepal is embedded in the high peaks of Nepal, where tradition flows with its rivers and art traverses through its valleys with religion deeply embedded in the heart of its people. It is a country where art, culture and religion play a huge role in its multi-ethnical and multi-linguistic people’s lifestyle. The Cultural Dance presented reflects the unique culture and traditions of the people of Himalayan Kingdom. Authentic Dinner with the unique culture show provides memorable moment and an unforgettable experience for anyone out to gain a new perspective on the culture and traditions of Nepali people.
Day 12 Kathmandu – Paro.
Upon arrival in Paro Airport of Bhutan, our representative in Bhutan will receive you and drive you to the hotel. After checking into the hotel and light refreshment, guests will already be off to the ruins of the Drukgyal Dzong, which is 16 km up the valley and was built in 1647 by the great Shabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, (father and unifier of medieval Bhutan). The dzong was destroyed by accidental fire and left in ruins as an evocative reminder of the great victories it was built to commemorate. Alongside the exploration of the ramparts on a clear day, one can experience an unforgettable view of Mt. Jhomolhari (7,314 m).
Day 13 Paro-Thimpu via Taktsan(Tiger Nest) excursions.
After breakfast, a short drive takes us to Satsam Chorten, from where a 2 hour horse ride will take it to the viewpoint of the spectacular Taktsang (Tiger's Nest) monastery. The trail climbs through beautiful pine forest, many of the trees festooned with Spanish moss, and an occasional grove of fluttering prayer flags. After a little rest and light refreshments at the Taktsang Jakhang (cafeteria), we continue to walk for a short while until one could see, clearly and seemingly within reach, Taktsang monastery. Built around Guru Rimpoche’s meditation cave in the 1684, this incredible monastery clings to the edge of a sheer rock cliff that plunges 900 meters into the valley below. Legend has it that Guru Padmasambhava, the tantric mystic who brought Buddhism to Bhutan, flew here on the back of a flying tiger (Dorji Drolo).
After Lunch, visit Ta Dzong (built in1656 and renovated in 1968), an ancient watchtower, which now houses the National Museum. A short walk takes you to the base of the dzong and across a traditional cantilevered bridge. In the evening, guests are driven to hotel in Thimpu.
Day 14 Thimpu sightseeing,transfer to Paro | Distance: 55 Kms Duration: 02 hrs.
The day begins with a visit to the National Memorial Chorten (1974) built in honour of the late King Jigme Dorji Wangchuk and the Dupthop Lhakhang (one of the few surviving nunneries in Bhutan). After the National Memorial Chorten, guests are off to visit National Library, which is full of ancient Buddhist manuscripts. After that, we are off to Painting School, where traditional art is still kept alive through instructions in the art of painting ‘Thangkas’ (sacred Buddhist religious scrolls).
After lunch we drive to the Traditional Medicine Institute, where medicines are prepared according to ancient practices, and then to Lungtenzampa to observe the Royal silver smiths and Bhutanese paper factory at work. Other highlights include a visit to the Tashichho Dzong, seat of the national government and the Central Monastic Body, including the summer residence of the Je Khenpo (Chief Abbot of Bhutan). In the evening, guests are driven to Simtokha Dzong; the oldest Dzong of Bhutan built by Shabdrung in 1627. Afterwards, guests could visit the Handicrafts Emporium followed by shopping for souvenirs in Thimpu.
Day 15 Paro-New Delhi.
Upon arrival in New Delhi, our new team from India will be waiting at the New Delhi airport to receive you and drive you to Delhi hotel.
Day 16 Drive to Agra | Distance: 250 Kms Duration: 05 hrs.
We will visit Agra Fort: The fort is built alongside the Yamuna River and stretches almost 2.5 km in length. It consists of a wall built in red sandstone and several buildings inside. The wall has 2 gates, the Delhi Gate and the Amar Singh Gate. You can only enter the fort via the Amar Singh Gate. It was built by Shah Janan in 1628 and contains beautiful mosques (Nagina Masjid & Mina Masjid), palaces (Macchi Bhavan, Khas Mahal, Shish Mahal, Shah Jahani Mahal) and the Zenana Mina Bazaar. Several of the buildings are made of pure marble with beautiful carvings. From the balconies in the pavilions, you have a nice view of the Yamuna River and Taj Mahal. History has it that the emperor Shah Jahan, who built the Taj Mahal, was imprisoned by his son Aurangzeb in the Agra Fort, which has very good view of Taj Mahal.
Day 17 Agra Full day sightseeing.
Taj Mahal: Taj Mahal is regarded as one of the eight wonders of the world, and some Western historians have noted that its architectural beauty has never been surpassed. It is one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of India. The Taj is the most beautiful monument built by the Mughals, the Muslim rulers of India. It is built entirely of white marble and its stunning architectural beauty is irresistible at dawn and sunset. The Taj seems to glow in the light of the full moon. It was built by a Muslim, Emperor Shah Jahan in the memory of his dear wife and then queen Mumtaz Mahal at Agra, India. It is an "elegy in marble" or some say an expression of a "dream." Taj Mahal, which means ‘Crown Palace’ in hindi, houses the grave of queen Mumtaz Mahal at the lower chamber. The grave of Shah Jahan was added to it later. Taj Mahal was constructed over a period of twenty-two years and employing twenty thousand workers. The architectural design uses the interlocking arabesque concept, in which each element stands on its own and perfectly integrates with the main structure. It uses the principles of self-replicating geometry and symmetry of architectural elements.
Excursion to Fatepur Sikri: Fatehpur Sikri is a fascinating ghost city built in the 16th century, 37 km from Agra. It is one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites of India. It is the source of inspiration for Indian Architects and have led to the conception of the National Institute of Design - India's prominent design school. This historic site was founded by Akbar the great, who at 26 years did not have a heir. He went to a saint, Shaikh Salim Chishti, who lived in a city called Sikri. His blessing gave Akbar 3 sons. As a gesture to the saint, Akbar built a whole new city in Sikri. It was built between 1569 and 1585 and was intended to be the joint capital with Agra, but was soon deserted because the water system could not support any residents. It remained untouched for over 400 years now and the palaces are now a stark reminder of the extravagant lifestyles of Mughals. A strong belief comes across from generations that a tunnel from here stretches to Delhi and from there to Lahore and on the other end to Agra. Due to non-maintenance, the tunnel had been closed in 1952 at approx 500m. Fatehpur Sikri is regarded as Emperor Akbar's crowning architectural legacy. Indeed, its numerous palaces, halls, and masjids satisfy his creative and aesthetic impulses, which was typical of Mughals.
Day 18 Agra - New Delhi | Distance: 250 Kms Duration: 05 hrs sightseeing New Delhi.
After breakfast in Agra, guests are driven back to New Delhi. Half day sightseeing.
Raj Ghat: Raj Ghat is the cremation site of Mahatma Gandhi and is one of the most visited sites in Delhi. It consists of a simple square black-marble platform that stands on the spot where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated. Nearby, there are cremation sites of Jawaharlal Nehru - the first Prime Minister of India, and other great persona like Indira Gandhi, Sanjay Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi and Lal Bahadur Shastri. There’s a black marble tomb which has an inscription of the words 'Hey Ram!', which were the last words were spoken by Mahatma Gandhi, as he fell down after being shot by Nathuram Godse. This national shrine has an eternal flame and the sandstone walls with an inscription of Gandhi’s several heart-touching messages.
India Gate: India Gate of New Delhi, the war- memorial arch, was built by the British in the honor of the unknown martyrs, who lost their lives in the First World War and Second Afghan War. Vijay Chowk (the Victory Square) is the site of 'Beating the Retreat' ceremony held annually in New Delhi, on 29th January. Originally known as All India War Memorial, it has the names of the soldiers who died in the wars inscribed on its walls. Since 1971, there is the eternal soldier's flame burning under it, known as 'Amar Jawan Jyoti'. It is the ceremonial boulevard of the Indian republic that boasts many ornamental parks, pools and gardens alongside. It is where much-awaited event of Republic Day Parade takes place on 26th January of every year.
Presidential Residence of India: Rashtrapati Bhawan, the official residence of the President of India was formerly known as 'Viceroy's House' and was occupied by the Governor General of India, until independence. Also known as President's House, the building holds a prominent position in New Delhi. Designed by the British architect, Sir Edwin Lutyens, this classical building uses colors and details peculiar to Indian architecture. It was completed by 1929 and was officially inaugurated in 1931. It was in 1950 that President started living in this ceremonial building and since then 'Viceroy's House' was renamed as 'Rashtrapati Bhavan’, which presents a spectacular blend of Mughal and European architectural styles.
Day 19 New Delhi sightseeing.
Qutab Minar: Qutab Minar, also known as the victory tower, is undoubtedly one of the finest stone towers in India and one of the most important landmarks of Delhi. The tower tapers from a base of 14.32 m to 2.75 m at its top and took 20 years to be built. Built in red sandstone, this tower sports the inscriptions of verses of Holy Quran and some intricate carvings. We can also see the ruins of the embattlements of the city called 'Siri' here. The city of ‘Siri’ was established in 1303 AD by Ala-ud-Din, who dug a vast reservoir to supply water to his city. Though nothing much of the city remains to be seen, it has been described by the contemporary historians as the 'envy of Baghdad, the rival of Cairo and equal to Constantinople'. Besides these, one can also see the tomb of Adham Khan and Zafar Mahal within Qutub complex and the tomb of Jamali-Kamali behind it.
Lotus Temple: The 40 m high Lotus Temple is one of the most beautiful temples in India. It was built in the shape of a half-opened Lotus flower. Situated near Bahapur village, it is the seventh Baha'i House of Worship in the world. Completed in 1986, this pure white marble temple is also known as ‘Taj of Modern India’. Surrounded by carefully manicured lawns, the temple structure has 27 giant white marble petals and nine pools, indicative of the nine unifying spiritual paths of the Baha'i faith, which believes in oneness of all religions and mankind. The faith emphasizes on prayer, described as 'Conversation with God', and meditation described as 'Key for opening the doors of mysteries'. The temple represents the broad views and scientific ideas of Baha`i faith, and signifies the purity and the universality of the Lord. A perfect silence is maintained in the main hall of prayer, to allow the devotees to meditate and pray peacefully. It is said that about four million people visit the temple daily. The temple looks all the more divine in the night, when the colored lights impart a very sparkling look.
Day 20 Departure back home.
Guests are all driven to Indira Ghandi International airport for flight back home.