8 Days Classic Tibet Train Tour from Xining

This 8 days Classic Tibet Train Tour will start from Xining, which is 1956 kilometers away from Lhasa, you can experience the magical journey of Qinghai-Tibet Railway in the shortest time and distance by only taking 24 hours. After arriving in holy Lhasa, you will first visit the city hifglights of Lhasa, experience the unique Tibetan Buddhism culture in the famous monasteries and palaces such as Potala palace and Jokhang temple. Then, pay a visit to Namtso Lake, you can fully appreciate the Nychen Tanglha Mountain on your way. A number of stream crossings aside you. Fantastic views of sparkling Nam-tso and Tashi Do are visible from many vantage points on the trail. Lastly, you will head for Shigatse to fully appreciate the Tibetan Buddhism culture in its main monasteries such as Tashilhunpo Monastery and Pelkor Monastery.


  • Enjoy the most beautiful views out of the window of Qinghai-Tibet Tain.
  • Meet the tranquil lakes, white snow mounatians, shimmering rivers and rare animals on your way.
  • Experience Tibetan Buddhism in significant monasteries in Lhasa and Shigatse including Potala Palace.
  • Pay a visit to the sparking Namtso Lake and the charming Tashi peninsula.

Brief Itinerary

  • Day 1: Xining-Lhasa 
  • Day 2: Lhasa Arrival
  • Day 3: Lhasa
  • Day 4: Lhasa
  • Day 5: Lhasa-Namtso
  • Day 6: Namtso-Dazhuka-Shigatse
  • Day 7: Shigatse-Lhasa
  • Day 8: Lhasa Departure

Google Map

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive in Xining-Lhasa by Train

Sightseeing and Activities:Arrive in Xining, take train to Lhasa
Accommodation:On the train

You will be welcome by tour guide in Xining airport, then transfer to train station to board the train to Tibet.  Stay overnight in Tibet Train.

Day 2 Lhasa

Sightseeing and Activities:Scenery View of Tibet Railway, arrive in Lhasa at about 16:00
Meals:Breakfast, Lunch

After one night stay in the train, today, You will witness the most beautiful scenery of Qinghai-Tibet Railway. The land of snows, the desert, the grassland, the ice mountains, the lakes will continually appear and strongly attract your heart. You will arrive in Lhasa at about 16:00 and your tour guide will hold a board with your name at the exit of the train station to welcome you. Transfer to your reserved hotel by a private car. Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 3 Lhasa

Sightseeing and Activities:Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and Barkhor Street
Meals:Breakfast, Lunch

The Potala Palace in Lhasa, Tibet

Today’s tour will first bring you to the Potala Palace, which is the winter palace of the Dalai lama. It was put to use since the 7th Century by the 33rd great king of Tibet. The most valuable collections of Potala Palace are the gilded burial stupas of former Dalai Lamas and meditation Cave of the 33rd great king of Tibet.

Then after lunch, you will head to Jokhang Temple which was founded by the 33rd great king of Tibet in the 7th century, in order to promote the Buddhist religion. Inside you can see the statue of Buddha Sakyamuni at the age of twelve, perhaps the only most venerated object in Tibetan Buddhism. Around the temple is Barkhor Street where you can do kora (a religious circle of a building or mountain) with pilgrims and locals, in the meantime you can buy souvenirs. Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 4 Lhasa

Sightseeing and Activities:Drepung and Sera Monastery
Meals:Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, you are going to visit Drepung monastery which was one of the “three greet” Gelug monasteries of Tibet and was founded in 1416 by Jamyang choge, one of the Tsongkhapa’s main disciples. Ganden palace is used as Dalai lama’s palace in the Drepung before moving to the Potala palace.

In the afternoon, head to the Sera Monastery which is one of the “great three” Gelug monasteries of Tibet, founded in 1419 by Jamchen chojey, one of the Tsongkhapa’s main disciples. The most popular attraction is the monk debate at around 3:00 – 5:00 in the afternoon. Stay overnight in Lhasa.

Day 5 Lhasa-Namtso

Sightseeing and Activities:Namtso Lake (220km,4 hours driving, asphalt road in good condition)
Accommodation:Namtso Lake Shore
Meals:Breakfast, Lunch

Tashi Dor Island of Namtso Lake in Tibet

In the morning around 08:00am, our guide and driver pick you up from your hotel, and then leave Lhasa to Namtso LakeNyenchen Thanglha Snow Mountain ranges appear in front of you all the way. In summer (May to August), the sheepherders and their family move to grassland and set up their tents, you could see green grassland, groups of sheep and yaks, nomad tents by the road. Namtso Lake is the Heavenly lake which is one of the three holy lakes of Tibet and also the highest salt lake. You can do a very relaxing trekking around the lake side and Tashi Island. Spending a night at lake shore is fantastic. The night sky is so clean that you could see all the stars twinkling on the sky, which are so close to you as if you could stretch your hands to pick them. Namtso lake is actually the lake in the sky, and it is about 5000m high lies on the highest plateau in the world. Stay overnight at Lake Shore Tent Guest House, dorm bed.

Day 6 Namtso-Dazhuka-Shigatse (385km, 8-9hours driving)

Sightseeing and Activities:Namtso,Dazhuka,Shigatse (385km, 8-9hours driving)
Meals:Breakfast, Lunch

Enjoy the clear morning at the lake shore, and you can trek along the lake shore to Tashi Dor Island to explore the meditation caves. After that, continue to Shigatse, the second biggest city in Tibet, you will go through a long distance of rough road between Yanpanchen and Dazhuka, and finally get to Shigatse in the late afternoon. Stay overnight in Shigatse.

Day 7 Shigatse-Gyantse-Lhasa(365km, 6-8 hours driving)

Sightseeing and Activities:Shigatse-Gyantse-Lhasa(365km, 6-8 hours driving)
Meals:Breakfast, Lunch

In the morning, you will visit the famous Tashilhunpo Monastery where you can see the well preserved largest statue of Jampa(future god) in the world. The monastery itself is abiding place for the successive Penchen Lamas. Then drive to Gyantse to visit Pelkor Monastery in Gyanse, which is a unique complex of kumbum and temple. Then drive towards Lhasa passing through Manla LakeYamdrotso Lake and Karola Glacier.

Stay overnight in Lhasa

Day 8 Depart from Lhasa airport

Sightseeing and Activities:Depart from Lhasa airport

Transfer to Lhasa airport by private car, end the service.

Recommended Hotels

Destination 5 Star 4 Star 3 Star
Lhasa Luxury St. Regis Lhasa Resort Lhasa Gang Gyan Hotel Lhasa Xiongbala Hotel
Shigatse / Shigatse Manasarovar Hotel Jiumu Yamei Hotel in Shigatse

Service Included:

  • Tibet travel permit and all other necessary permits to Tibet;
  • All entrance ticket fees for all tourist sites listed in the itinerary;
  • Personal knowledgeable English-speaking Tibetan local tour guide;
  • Personal comfortable, clean and safe vehicle with reliable Tibetan local driver; vehicle ranging from 4WD land cruiser to minibus depending on your group size;
  • All lodging listed in the itinerary; it’s your decision about the accommodation class: luxury 5-star international hotel, comfortable 4-star hotel, economic 3-star hotel or budget hostel, guesthouse or tent. Please tell us your accommodation preference when submitting the enquiry; we will arrange the best-value hotels for you.
  • Domestic flight/train tickets listed in the itinerary;
  • All meals listed in the above itinerary;

Service Excluded:

  • International flight to and out of China;
  • Chinese visa (Note: we could help you with the Chinese visa application, like providing the invitation letter, presenting the hotel or domestic flight reservation copies, etc that you may need. )
  • Domestic flight/train not listed in the itinerary. (We can provide you the domestic flight/train ticket booking service at the BEST discount price; please contact us our travel experts for the details.)
  • Meals not specified in the itinerary; usually it costs about USD3-15 per person for one meal in TAR (Tibet Autonomous Region).
  • Tips and gratitude to tour guide and driver;
  • Personal expenses, like laundry, phone call, snacks, soft drinks (please do the best to avoid the alcoholic beverages during your Tibet trip), optional tour activities, etc.

Travel Tips:

  1. Tibet Permits

There are several permits required to visit Tibet. Tibet Entry Permit, issued by Tibet Tourism Bureau, is the most important one which has to be obtained before your trip because you must have it to take your flight/train to Tibet. To get the permit, you have to book a Tibet tour with us, and send us your passport and Chinese visa about 20 days in advance, and then let us apply for the permit (all Tibet permits can only be applied by travel agency). If you travel to other prefectures like Shigatse, Nyingchi, Shannan, etc, you also have to obtain an Alien Travel Permit. If you travel to Mount Everest, you have to obtain a Border Permit. (Tibet Discovery, with office in Lhasa, has always kept up with the latest news on Tibet Permits. Traveling with us, all your permits are guaranteed as long as you are qualified to the requirements.)

  1. Available Months to Visit Tibet

Generally speaking, May to early October is the best time to for a Mount Kailash trip. July and August are the peak season and rainy season. It may be too cold to travel in Kailash area from November to March. There is usually heavy snow. The conditions in Namtso Lake and Mount Everest area are quite similar with Kailash. While other places like Lhasa, Gyantse and Shigatse are suitable for travel all year around.

  1. High Altitude Sickness

The average altitude of Tibet is about 4000 meters above the sea level (Lhasa: 3700m; EBC: 5200m; Namtso: 4718m). You may suffer a bit from High Altitude Sickness in the beginning days of your Tibet trip if you haven’t had rich high plateau travel experience. But don’t worry too much, the high altitude can be acclimatized usually in 2~3 days. Our suggestion is to take a physical examination and get suggestions from your doctor, and also bring some medicines to prevent from High Altitude Sickness before your trip. While in Tibet, you should keep warm all the time, avoid strenuous activities, drink more water and eat more vegetables and carbohydrates. You’d better not take showers during the first two days after your arrival at Tibet. If you don’t feel well, get help from your tour guide or go to the hospital without any delay.

  1. How to Go to Tibet

Basically you have two options – flight and train. Currently, you can take a flight to Lhasa from Beijing(4.5hrs), Xian(3.7hrs), Chengdu(2.5hrs), Chongqing(3hrs), Kuming(3hrs), etc. Among all these cities, Chengdu and Xian have more frequent flights to Lhasa. Kathmandu also has several flights to Lhasa each week.

If you a train travel, you can take a train to from Beijing(40.5hrs), Xian(32hrs), Chengdu(43hrs), Shanghai(47hrs), Chongqing(42hrs), Lanzhou(25hrs), Xining(22hrs), Guangzhou(54hrs).

  1. Packing and Wearing Ideas

Firstly you can’t forget your passport and Chinese Visa. A large backpack and a smaller one are recommended (the smaller one can be used for daily activities). Also bring the necessary medicine you need. Other stuffs like sunglasses, snow glasses, hats, lip balm, sun block are recommended. As for wearing, you are suggested to dress in layers (both thin and thick jackets). Down jacket is necessary in Spring and Autumn. A pair of durable and comfortable shoes is necessary.