12 Days
Duration
Nepal & Tibet
Tour Through
9/10
Toughness
May – Sep
Tour Months

Royal Enfields Across Tibet! From Kathmandu north to the border, passing from one mystical world to another, we cross the Tibetan Plateau to the ancient capital Lhasa, over 1200km on the ‘Friendship Highway’.

High altitude desert landscapes across Gyatso La 5,260m, exploring famous Monasteries in Shigatse and Gyantse, riding the western forested lakeside of Yamdrok Tso we head for Lhasa.

Kathmandu Lhasa Riding the 800km Friendship Highway linking Tibet’s capital to Nepal crosses passes some – the highest after Lhartse at Gyatso La 5,260m, is for long stretches well paved making for some really spectacular riding.


Tour Start & Finish at Kathmandu, Nepal
Tour Duration 12 days
Tour Months May to September (arrival day in Kathmandu Sun, Tue or Thur)
Included   Motorcycle, Fuel, Hotels, Main Meals, Domestic Transfers, Guide
Excluded  Visas, Travel Insurance, Excess Luggage Fees, Catch-Up Costs

See Terms for complete list of Includes and Excludes.


From Shigatse we ride south east to Gyantse up the Nyang Chu river – time permitting we visit the “Anti-British Imperialism Museum” that chronicles the 1904 British ‘Invasion’ of Tibet. The smaller S307 highway crosses Karo La (5,150m) down through Nagartse and around the western forested lakeside of the holy Yamdrok Yumtso and on to Lhasa. In Lhasa we visit the famous Potala Palace. We enjoy two evenings in Lhasa, before flying you back to Kathmandu. The following day is for local touring in and around Kathmandu.


Landscape
High Mountain Roads – Vast Panoramas
Clear Blue Skies – Raging Rivers
Sky Blue lakes – High altitude desert
Night Stays
Three Star Hotels – Luxury Camps
Local Guest Houses – Parachute Tents
Simple huts – Local Lodges

Culture & Customs
Newari Festivals – Nomadic Life
Nepali Cuisine – Buddhist Culture
Silk Road Scenes – Chinese Development
Challenges En-Route
Broken roads – Off-road sections
River crossings – Altitude Sickness
Snow & Ice – Bright hot sunshine
1

Day 1 – Arrive in Kathmandu

On your arrival in Kathmandu, your hotel will collect you from the airport and bring you to our Thamel hotel. Time permitting you can enjoy some local sightseeing during an acclimatising ride, after a welcoming dinner we’ll have a Ride briefing. We need to complete some paperwork this evening ready to collect your Tibet permits tomorrow. We night stop in our Thamel hotel.
2

Day 2 – North to Syabru Besi

After we’ve had breakfast and loaded the bikes with our luggage we head north out of the capital, across the Kathmandu valley and into the surrounding hills. Riding through green hills with steep sided valleys, avoiding lumbering tucks and buses at all times!

We’re heading for the small village of Syabru Besi at the end of the Lantang Valley. It’s at the beginning of a new road built by Chinese road engineers. We night stop in small hotel in the village.

3

Day 3 – Cross the Border

We cross the newly built border crossing at Gyirong some 30 kms from our Langtang night stop.

We meet our guide with support vehicle and with administration matters completed we ride 40kms to the town of Giyrong. Our night stop is in Giyrong.

4

Day 4 – Into the ranges!

We’ve slept on it – some better than other’s perhaps and our bodies are acclimatising having arrived in a short day’s ride to a height of 3,660m. It is important to acclimatise ready for the high passes that lie ahead. If riders are feeling unwell due to AMS we must rest another day here to continue acclimatising. If all are well we ride on. We’re aiming for Old Tingri, a huddle of houses and the odd guest house at the junction with the ‘road’ to Mt Everest Base Camp. We night stop at Old Tingri.
5

Day 5 – Next stop Mt Everest Base Camp!

From Old Tingri we head south towards the small settlement of Rongbuk. We plan to stay in the Rongbuk Monastery, in full view of the great peak. One has to wake early to get a good view of Mt Everest as clouds quickly form to obscure the peak.
6

Day 6 – Sayka Monastery

It’s a longer ride today, we leave the main highway and head south to the small town of Sakya. We’ll stay here and take the opportunity to see the monastery at Sakya.
7

Day 7 – Shigatse's Tashilhunpo Monastery

Pressing on, we ride east over two 4,000m passes to Shigatse (Lhartse – Shigatse 150km) where, perched on a hilltop in the centre is the Tashilhunpo Monastery, built by the 1st Dalai Lama in 1447.

Shigatse is the second largest city in the Tibetan Autonomous Region with a population of nearly 100,000 and at an elevation of 3,800m, it sits on the confluence of the Brahmaputra and Nyang rivers. Here we relax and take time to explore the centre of this bustling city, the monastery and markets. It’s our night stop so we’ll head to the ‘old town’ for dinner.

8

Day 8 – Dark history in Gyantse

Today is a short ride, we head off to cover the 100kms to Gyantse. The road always above 4,000m. On the northern side of this now largely developed town, the wall Palcho Monastery, sits beside a nine tiered ‘Kumbum’, whose walls are lined with 77 chapels. Much of the monastery and its surroundings were destroyed during the Cultural Revolution, but what remains is still a sight to behold.

In Gyantse in the old Palcho monastery is a small museum – the “Anti-British Imperialism Museum” which gives the Chinese version of the Younghusband led British invasion of 1904. We will night stop in Gyantse.

9

Day 9 – Last leg to Lhasa.

It’s the last day of the ride. The final leg to Lhasa is about 250kms. Riding in the direction of Nagartse, south of the main highway, after climbing Karo La at 5,045m before dropping down to ride along the vast Yamdrok lake – sacred dwelling place of protective deities. The lake was dammed in ’96 to create Tibet’s largest hydro-power station. Its waters are fished by locals whose catch is sold in Lhasa.

Then the final pass, a tunnel and bridge across the Yarlung Tsangpo; at the end of the day we reach Lhasa. Traffic moves quickly in Lhasa and driving habits require an eyes-in-the-back-of-your-head, careful approach. We stay in a comfortable, clean, modern hotel – read: hot water, clean sheets, (O2 in the mini bar) and a place to relax. We’ll rest and recover enjoy dinner and retire to get a good night’s sleep.

10

Day 10 – The Potala Palace

We’ll tour the Potala Palace, and time permitting take a ride to the Galden monastery east of Lhasa up the Lhasa river – a tributary of the Yarling Zangbo. We night stop in the same Lhasa hotel.
11

Day 11 – Fly back to Kathmandu

It’s the last day of the tour in Tibet. We transfer you some 40kms and fly with you on the transfer flight from Lhasa’s Gonggar airport to Kathmandu, where you’ll be collected at Kathmandu’s airport to spend your last night in the same Thamel hotel.
12

Day 12 – Kathmandu Local Touring

It’s a day for sightseeing locally. There wasn’t time at the start of the Tour but now you’ll have to time to visit the amazing temple complex at Basantapur at the heart of old Kathmandu, more commonly called the Durbar Square, one of seven UNESCO sites across Nepal.

We can taste the weird and wonderful snacks cooked daily by he original inhabitants of the Kathmandu Valley, the Newars. If you want to explore firther there’s the older city of Patan to explore, again with it’s unique UNESCO preserved temples in it’s own Durbar Square.

We’ll eat out in one of Thamel’s restaurants perhaps reflecting on some of the Tour highlights. Our night stop is again at our Thamel hotel.

12

Day 12 – Fly home

The Tour is over and in good time we transfer you to Kathmandu airport for your onward flight home.

Tour Prices Include…

Motorcycle (Himalayan model) including fuel, oil, maintenance & spares.
A Jeep as a support vehicle with driver.
Royal Enfield mechanic and spares where required.
Road Captain/Tour Guide.
All domestic transfers.
All hotel accommodation for the Tour dates (unless otherwise arranged).
All meals whilst at a hotel / lodge / camp. Typically Breakfast and Dinner.
Restricted Area Permits, where required.
Road Book notes and area maps, with en-route contact details.
First-Aid Boxes are carried in the support vehicle and with the Tour Guide.
Expedition Luggage: 2 Panniers, Tank Bags (by request) and 1 Holdall for accumulated stuff*.
*Luggage can be carried in the support vehicle.

Tour Prices Do Not Include…

International Flights / Excess baggage charges.
International Airport departure taxes, airline fuel surcharges.
Visa (Passports must be valid for at least 6 months.)
Personal Travel Insurance.
Lunch. Lunch is usually a “Road Experience” and is either paid for by yourself or a ‘group kitty’.
Entrance fees to national parks, monuments and sites of historic interest.
Hotel bar and snack bills, bottled drinking water.
Vaccinations and medicine.
Laundry service, tips, room service, porters, telephone and fax calls.
Motorcycle clothing.
Single Accommodation supplement for each tour day is £70.