Hike to Drak Yerpa Caves – 6 Days

Lhasa, the heart and soul of Tibet, is a city of wonders. The visits to different sites in Lhasa would be an awesome experience. Potala Palace has been the focus of the travellers for centuries. It is the cardinal landmark and a structure of massive proportion. Norbulingka is the summer palace of His Holiness Dalai Lama. Drepung monastery is one of the world’s largest and most intact monasteries. Jokhang temple is the heart of Tibet and Barkhor market is the place to get necessary resources for locals as well as  souvenirs for tourists.

The highlight of this trip is the hike to the caves of Drak Yerpa. This provides a slight change from monasteries and temples. The Drak Yerpa Caves is one of central Tibet’s outstanding hermitage power places. The history of this place includes many of the great names responsible for the establishment of Buddhism in Tibet. A visit to these meditation caves also provides amazing views of the valley. This is an itinerary with a bit of culture, spirituality and adventure.

Distance (Airport to Lhasa):  62kms/ 32 miles
Drive Time: 1 hour approx.
Altitude: 3,490 m/ 11,450ft

Upon arrival at Gonggar Airport (3570m), you will be met and assisted by our representative. After checking in to the hotel, rest for most of the day.

Lhasa is a city of wonders that contains many culturally significant Tibetan Buddhist religious sites and lies in a valley next to the Lhasa river.

Overnight at Hotel [B/-/-]

Visit Sera and Drepung Monastery
Founded in 1419, Sera monastery is one of the “great three” Gelukpa university monasteries in Tibet. 5km north of Lhasa, the Sera monastery’s setting is one of the prettiest in Lhasa. The Drepung monastery houses many cultural relics, making it more beautiful and giving it more historical significance.

Overnight at Hotel [B/-/-]

Visit Potala Palace, Jokhang, Norbulinka and Barkhor Market

Potala Palace:Potala Palace, the chief residence of the Dalai Lama since the 7th century has been the focus of travellers for centuries. It is the cardinal landmark and a structure of massive proportion. It symbolizes Tibetan Buddhism and its role in the traditional administration of Tibet.

Norbulingka means ‘Treasure Park’ in Tibetan and is situated in the western suburb of Lhasa city, on the bank of the Kyichu river, about one kilometer southwest of the Potala Palace. It is the biggest man-made garden in Tibet. Jokhang temple also houses many invaluable cultural relics. Every year, the Great Prayer Festival is held here.

Visit Barkhor street, the oldest street in Lhasa and runs through the center of the old city. It is a circular street where Tibetan culture, economy, religion and arts assemble.

Overnight at Hotel [B/-/-]

Drive and hike time: 90 minutes’ drive and 1.5 hour hike

A short drive to North – East of Lhasa is the Yerpa cave, one of the holiest cave retreats ever. At one time the hill at the base of the Cave – dotted cliffs was home to the Yerpa monastery. The monastery, however, was effectively laid to waste in the Cultural Revolution and there is very little to see nowadays. The site is very peaceful and offers stunning views.

It is probably not of great interest for the average traveller but, for those with a particular interest in Tibetan Buddhism, Yerpa is one of the holiest cave retreats ever.  At one time the hill at the base of the cave – dotted cliffs was home to Yerpa monastery. The monastery, however, was effectively laid to waste in the Cultural Revolution and there is very little to see nowadays. The history of Dark Yerpa includes many of the great names responsible for the establishment of Buddhism in Tibet. The Emperor Srongtsen Gampo meditated in seclusion here: Guru Rimpoche and several of his disciples also meditated here: and here Jowo Atisha chose to preach extensively. Although the ancient Kadampa Gompa has been destroyed, the geomantic qualities that made Drak Yerpa a major power place still remains and still attract hermits to its caves.
It’s about a 90 minutes’ drive each way. Getting to the Yerpa caves involves an hour and half hike with gradual ascent and 45 minutes’ walk back.

Overnight at Hotel [B/-/-]

Visit Samye Monastery and Chimpu caves

Situated amidst breathtaking scenery, built in the 8th century, Samye monastery was the first Buddhist monastery to be founded in Tibet by King Trisong Detsen. A unique monastery and village rolled into one, Samye is a highlight of a visit to Tibet.

We will also visit the Chimpu caves, which is located above the monastery. Transfer back to Lhasa after the sightseeing.

Overnight at Hotel [B/-/-]

You will be transferred to international airport for your onward journey.
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Trip Ends



Destination Tibet
Trip Duration 6 Days
Arrival In Lhasa
Departure From Lhasa
Meals Bed & breakfast basis
Best Season February – May/ September – November
Activity Tour
Grade Easy
Includes •    All necessary arrival/departure transfers
•    Meet assistance at the airport
•    5 nights’ hotel accommodation in Lhasa in a twin sharing basis on bed and breakfast basis
•    Sightseeing tour and all surface transfers in Tibet will be provided as per the itinerary with English speaking Tibetan guide by private vehicle
•    Tibet Travel Permit
•    All entrance and monuments fees as indicated in the program
Excludes •    Chinese Visa Fee [Will be quoted separately and subject to change if revised]
•    International airfare [Will be quoted separately and subject to change if revised]
•    Meals which are not mentioned in the above program
•    Refreshments, bottled drinks
•    Tipping
•    Insurance and rescue of any form
•    Cost arising out of flight cancellation/road blockades/landslides/riots and events beyond our control
•    Expenses of personal nature and any other expenses not mentioned in the above cost
•    Photography charges in the monasteries and monuments
•    Any other services and items which are not mentioned in the above cost inclusion