Day13. 26 June 08. Lanzhou to Xining. 310km.
Visit Taer temple detour 80km. Total 230km. Total ride 310km with detour.
Xining is the only large city in the Qinghai and is the capital of the province. Long established as a Chinese city, it’s been a military garrison and the trading centre since 16th century. Now a days it’s also a stopover for foreigners following the Qinhai-Tibet route. Preached at an elevation of 2275m on the edge of the Tibetan plateau and it is a convenient staging post for visiting Ta er Si, Mengda Nature Reserve and Qinghai Hu. The city has a friendly feel and the streets are full of colorful markets and street stalls.
Day14. 27 June 08. Xining to Daotanghe. 102km.
The next few days we will basically traveling in the Qinghai province until we reach Lhasa, the capital of Tibet autonomous region.
Named after Qinghai Lake, the largest inland salt - water lake in China, Qinghai Province is located in the northeastern part of the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau in western China. Qinghai covers an area of 720,000 square kilometers (about 278,000 square miles), which makes it the fourth largest province in China. Its total population is some 5 million, among which Han, Tibetan, Tu, Hui, Salar and Mongolian minority ethnic groups are represented. Visitors are not only fascinated by the traditional festivities of different minority ethnic groups, but also by their unique cultures and folk traditions. Xining is its capital.
Qinghai's climate is characterized by short cool summers and long freezing winters. Due to drastic temperature fluctuations from day to night, summer may be the best time to visit Qinghai because this is when the road to Tibet, via Golmud is open and its climate is friendliest to its visitors Snow-covered mountains, icy peaks, deserts, vast pastures and sparkling lakes mesmerize its visitors, while flocks of rare birds and animals dot this unique and colorful natural landscape. Two of Qinghai's biggest highlights, Ta'er Monastery (Kumbum Monastery), which is considered one of the six great monasteries of Gelugpa in Tibetan Buddhism and vast Qinghai Lake, attract nature lovers who enjoy camping, hiking and bird-watching as well as people who have a fascination with Buddhism. The 'Small Imperial Palace in Qinghai'-Qutan Monastery, snow - capped A'Nyemaqen Mountain and the 'Highland Xishuangbanna' Mengda Nature Reserve are also well-known all over the world. Culturally speaking, 'Repkong Art' displays the creative talents of the Qinghai people through painting.
Boasting a remote, ancient and mysterious land, Qinghai - is a paradise for adventurers!.
Day15. 28 June 08. Daotanghe to Dulan. 326km.
On the way we cross many interesting towns and villages of Jiangxigou, Tanakama, Dashuiqiao, Gaxun, Xarag and finally Dulan seeing varied landscapes and interesting Chinese inhabitants and everything in-between.
Day16. 29 June 08. Dulan to Golmud. 353km.
We will be traveling the interesting country side and towns of Xiangride, Nomhon and Dagur and seeing the adventurous Qinghai province to reach Golmud, which is a mining and oil drilling town, we have to stop here for our onwards journey to Lhasa. The worlds highest railroad runs from Golmud to Lhasa and was in the news sometime back after Tibet was connected with the mainland China from Golmud.
Day17. 30 June 08. Golmud to Nachitai. 90km.
Riding the Qinghai-Tibet highway we cross the settlements of Nanshanhou and Qagan Tohoi.
Day18. 01 July 08. Nachitai to Erdaogou 300km.
Riding the wild Tibet-Qinghai highway we can see peak of 6000m on this route, we cross the towns of Xiaonanchuan cross the Kunlun Shankou pass at 4767m, we cross settlements and towns of Qumar Hayan, Wudaoliang, Beiluheyan and Luanhaizi to settle for the night at Erdaogou.
Day19. 02 July 08. Erdaogou to Mt. Thangula. 330km.
Crossing the towns and settlements and country sides of Wuli, Tanggulashan, Garqu Yan, Yangshiping, Wenquan we reach Thangula.
Day20. 03 July 08. Mt. Thangula to Nakqu. 227km.
Today we cross the Dangla Pass at 5700m, crossing the settlements of Draknak/Amdo, Tsaring and Dangoen we are at the town of Nakqu.
Day21. 04 July 08. Nakqu to Lhasa via the Yangbachen hotsprings. 326km.
We have a lot of places to get across until we reach the interesting city of Lhasa. We will be seeing Lhoma crossing the Zangzung la pass, Damzhung, Yangpachen and Namka Ngoshi until we reach the ancient of Lhasa.
Day22. 05 July 08. Lhasa rest and sightseeing.
Lhasa- is the heart and soul of Tibet, the erstwhile abode of Dalai Lamas and the object of devout pilgrimage for practioners of Tibetain Buddhism. The Potala palace dominates the Lhasa skyline. Jokhang Temple 2km to the east of the Potala palace is the spiritual heart of the city. Encircling it is the Barkhor, the holiest of Lhasa’s devotional circumambulation circuits. It is here that most visitors first fall in love with Tibet. The medieval push and shove of crowds, the street performers, the stalls hawking every thing from prayer flags to jewel-encrusted yak skulls, and the devout tapping their foreheads to the ground at every step is an exotic brew that few newcomers can resist. o/n Lhasa.
Day23. 06 July 08. Lhasa to Gyangtse via Yamdrok Lake. 258km.
We will now head south towards Kathmandu Nepal. The 920km road between Lhasa and Kathmandu is known as the Friendship highway. This journey has been termed as one of the most spectular scenic highways in the world.
The drive to Gyantse via the Yamdrop tso/lake involves crossing a big pass at 5045m the Karo la pass with great views of the Nojin-Kangtsang Glacier.
Yamdrok lake at 4488m can be seen from the summit of the Ganba-la pass(4794m). The lake lies several hundred meters below the road and in clear weather is a fabulous shade of deep turquoise. Far in the distance is the huge massif of Mt Nojin Kangtsang (7191). Nangartse,a small town along the way and, a 20-30minutes drive from Nngartse brings you to Samding Monastry, a charming palace with scenic views of the surrounding areas and lake.
Day24. 07 July 08. Gyangtse to Shigatse to Shakya.
Visit Tashilhunpo monastery, visit Pelkhor Chode Monastery & Kumbum Stupa (90km). Do a lot of sightseeing of Cultural interests. Later ride towards the Monastic town of Shakya at 4280m. Shakya is characterized by the ash grey painting of its Monasteries unlike the usual white colour monasteries.
Day25. 08 July 08. Shakya to Rongbuk and visit Mt. Everest base camp. 300km.
Visit the Rongbuk monastery which is the highest monastery in the world. Everest Base camp is 5200m. Ride around the nearby areas. This is the place to gaze on the stunning north face of the worlds tallest peak, Mt. Everest at 8848m. You are so close you can literally climb the big mountain!.
Day26. 09 July 08. Rongbuk to Tingri. 140km.
Today we will ride towards Tingri, a huddle of Tibetain homes bordered by huge mountains. There is little to see today but all along views of Everest and Mt. Cho Oyu compensate our ride.
Day27. 10 July 08. Tingri to Nyalam. 100km.
We can stay a night at the hotspring near Tingri, but today we head towards Nyalam and enroute visit the cave of the famous Buddhist yogi. Nyalam is a small town a one street Tibetain town with an interesting night life, check out some bars.
Day28. 11 July 08. Nyalam to Zangmu to Friendship bridge/Kodari in Nepal. End of Bike tour.
Complete the China tour, complete immigration and paper works and cross the friendship bridge and end of tour in China. Bid farewell to our China crew. Met and greet by Nepal counterpart. They will assist us with all the paper works and porterage and drive to the Last Resort.
The Last Resort is set amidst sprawling terraces, suspended on a high cliff-top gorge above the wild Bhote Kosi River and surrounded by dense jungle and pristine forest. Limited access across our purpose built bridge guarantees privacy in this magnificent area. The grounds of the resort are meticulously landscaped and luxurious safari tents are spaciously set in lush gardens to ensure guests a quiet and peaceful stay in an exotic setting. Dinner and Overnight at the Last Resort. It is also possible to try some bungee jumping in one of Asia’s highest bungee jumping spots.
Day29. 12 July 08. Drive to Kathmandu. 101 KM.
Enroute we will visit the ancient city of Bhaktapur which is a world heritage site. Drive through the nepali country side to reach Kathmandu. Be free to relax in your Hotel. Do shopping, massage or just explore the Kathmandu city on your own. o/n Kathmandu.
Day30. 13 July 08. Departure for Europe.