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The Best Tibet Tours to Enjoy in Tibet

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Tibet is a vast land, with a multitude of things to see and do, and more mountains and lakes than you could ever imagine. From the stunning vistas of the mighty Himalayas and the multitude of holy lakes, such as Yamdrok, Manasarovar, and Namtso, to the stunning temples and monasteries that cover the region and the unique Tibetan culture that is infused with Tibetan Buddhism in every part of the local people’s lives. However, while there are a vast number of attractions across the region, there are some Tibet tours that are extremely popular, and which can give you the best of the Tibetan plateau and its unique culture.

Travel from Lhasa to EBC—the Most Popular Tour in Tibet

One of the best and most popular tours in Tibet, the tour that runs from Lhasa to Everest Base Camp (EBC) is an adventure that many people only ever dream about. However, in Tibet those dreams can come true, and you can get close to the massive mountain, traveling to the northern base camp from which many mountaineering expeditions have set off to attempt to conquer the world’s highest mountain.

Lhasa, the capital of Tibet since the seventh century, is one of the world’s most amazing cities, as well as being the highest capital city in the world. Home to more than a dozen monasteries and temples, including the sacred Jokhang Temple in the Lhasa Old Quarter, which holds the sacred statue of Buddha that was brought to Tibet by Princess Wencheng on the occasion of her marriage to the Tibetan King.

Outside Lhasa, the road to EBC follows the famous Friendship Highway, to the town of Gyantse, where you can view and explore the famous Kumbum Stupa, the only stupa of its kind in Tibet, which stands 32 meters tall and has 108 chapels within its nine levels. An auspicious construction, the stupa is the highlight of the Pelkor Chode Monastery, in which it resides, and is an amazing sight.

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Further afield lies the second city of Tibet, Shigatse, the gateway to the Qomolangma National Park and Mount Everest itself. A delightful city with a myriad of delicious restaurants, it is also the home of the Tashilhunpo monastery, the traditional seat of the region’s second-highest incarnation, the Panchen Lama, and constructed by the first Dalai Lama in the 15th century.

From Shigatse, it is a long drive out to the famous base camp of Mount Everest, passing along the Friendship Highway for a while, before turning off to head south to the mountain itself. At the foot of the great peak, lying in the shadow of the mountain, is the world’s highest monastery, Rongbuk Gompa, from where you can get one of the best views of Mount Everest in the world. The monastery is also famous for its former abbot, who gave the name Tenzing Norgay to a small boy who later became one of the first two people to reach the summit of the world’s highest mountain.

The base camp itself is not the actual base camp of the mountaineers that make their attempts to scale the infamous and dangerous North Col, but lies a little way before the mountaineer’s base camp. Designated as the tourist base camp, it is the closest one can get to the face of the huge mountain without signing up for an expedition to the summit, and has one of the best views of the peak for photographers.

Travel to EBC can be done throughout most of the year, with the exception of late February and March, when Tibet is closed to tourists, although January may be a little cold and snowy. The best time is from April to June and Sept to Oct., and while it is possible to travel there in the summer monsoon months, there is no guarantee that you will be able to see the summit, due to the clouds that can often cover the peak.

Travel from Lhasa to Mt. Kailash via EBC— the Best Spiritual Tour in Tibet

If you are looking for a spiritual tour of Tibet, then look no further than the exciting tour from Lhasa to Mount Kailash, the most sacred mountain on the planet. Taking much the same route as the tour to EBC, this tour then continues on to the north, into Ngari Prefecture, to make a three-day trek around what is considered to be the mountain of the center of the universe, Mount Kailash.

Sacred in four religions – Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Bon – Mount Kailash is one of the most protected sites in the world, and no human has ever set foot on its black slopes. Shaped like an eroded pyramid, this massive peak rises 6,638 meters above sea level, and while it is nowhere near one of the highest mountains in the world, it stands a head and shoulders above the other mountains in the Gangdise Range that surround it.

Around the bottom of this sacred mountain is a trail that circumnavigates the whole mountain, stretching for 52 kilometers around the foothills of the peak, starting and ending in the small village of Darchen, below the southern face of the mountain. A holy ritual kora route, the trek is regularly done by Tibetan and Indian pilgrims, who come to the mountain in search of enlightenment and absolution. The trek normally takes around three days, and stops at two of the five sacred monasteries around the mountain, which have guesthouses to cater to the thousands of pilgrims that circumambulate the sacred mountain every month.

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For non-pilgrims, this is the most arduous trek in Tibet, and one that takes you up to one of the highest passes you can trek over, Dolma La, which lies at 5,636 meters above sea level, and is strewn with prayer flags where pilgrims have stopped to pray and left blessings to be blown across the earth for the benefit of all living creatures.

An astounding tour, this is not one for the faint of heart, as it is a tough and rugged trek around the mountain. However, if you are determined to do it, it can be completed on a pony, which can be hired from the village of Darchen, and which can be ridden around the kora route. It is only the pilgrims that have to make the trek on foot.

Travel from Lhasa to Kathmandu via EBC—the Epic Overland Tour across Mighty Himalayas

An amazing journey of discovery and adventure, the tour from Lhasa to Kathmandu takes in two of the three Himalayan capitals, traveling across almost the entire Tibetan plateau, before dropping down over the border to the Nepali capital of Kathmandu, the world’s most exotic city.

The trip from Lhasa to Kathmandu takes around 7-8 days, and takes you to some of Tibet’s most popular and stunning attractions, as well as sending you down from the Himalayas to the delights of the Kathmandu Valley, the center of Nepali culture. Traveling by road across the region, you will pass by the stunning lake Yamdrok, with its fan-shaped branches stretching for miles in all directions, and then on to Gyantse, where you can see the Pelkor Chode Monastery and it famous 32-meter Kumbum Stupa. Then on to Shigatse, and finally EBC and Rongbuk Gompa, where you can enjoy the stunning views of the world’s highest mountain up close and personal.

Once you are done at Everest, you will travel to the newly opened border crossing into Nepal, at Gyirong Port. Opened for international travelers into and out of Tibet from Nepal in August of 2017, this crossing replaced the one between Zhangmu and Kodari after the earthquake that destroyed the crossing point in 2015. Now a world-famous crossing point, it is the last step of your journey through Tibet, as you pass through Chinese immigration to exit China, and walk across the Resuo Bridge, which spans the high Trishuli River Gorge between China and Nepal.

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Once across, you will pass through Nepali immigration, where you can get your visa on arrival if you have not obtained one already, and cross into the stunning country of Nepal, the paradise of Himalayan trekkers. Getting from Gyirong Port to Kathmandu can be done by local bus or by shared private van, which takes around six hours to get to the Nepali Capital.

The tour from Lhasa to Kathmandu is one of the most popular tours in the region, and can also be done in reverse, starting in Kathmandu and traveling overland across the border and then on to Lhasa, taking in the sights along the way. An amazing and epic adventure, this is one of the best ways to tour Tibet, and is best done with a group, as you will get to share that exciting experience of standing in the shadow of the world’s highest mountain together.

Conclusion

Tibet is one of the world’s most enthralling destinations for tourists, and if you have the chance, you should come and visit, we would be happy to see you. While these are the most popular tours to take, they are not the only tours that can be taken in Tibet, and there are dozens of different tours and routes that you can take to explore the many exciting sights and aspects of this land of snows, the roof of the world, and the Third Pole. Just come and talk to us, and we can point you in the right direction to make your dream tour of Tibet a reality.

Cole is one half of New Zealand's leading adventure travel blogging couple who have been wearing out their jandals around the world since 2009. He loves any adventure activities and anything to do with the water whether it is Surfing, Diving, Swimming, Snorkeling or just lounging nearby on the beach. You can follow Cole on Google+. Or consider following us via RSS Feed, Twitter, Facebook and subscribe to our Newsletter.

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Travel Tips

A Trip To Qatar In 2022

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Qatar Financial Centre

While although international travel is not on the agenda in this current climate, one would hope that the world will return to a sense of normal by 2022 and if it does, it means football’s biggest party will be sending out its invites.

A party that will be hosted in the Middle Eastern nation of Qatar and although FIFA’s decision may have initially raised some eyebrows, there’s no doubt that plans for such large festivities are being anticipated all over the globe.

It is the first time that the crown jewel of world football has been staged in the Middle East and although that adds an element of pressure to the Qatari organisers, they are ready to put on one gargantuan show.

Of course, the show needs its headline names and with 32 teams earning qualification for the tournament over the next couple of years, the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Neymar and Lionel Messi will be ready to display their talents on the biggest stage of all.

Even though we are still two years removed from the first game of the tournament, the bookmakers are still taking bets on the eventual winner and at present, France and Brazil are topping the odds to get another cup at Qatar 2022.

France will certainly be considered as favourites and after success in Russia back in 2018, Paris Saint-Germain’s Mbappe will be ready to lead his side to back to back trophies and a third overall title for the country after previous jubilation in 1998.

With that said, a lot can change between now and November 2022, as form and fitness will dictate who will be able to mount a serious challenge and who will end up being left behind as nothing more than an also-ran.

When it comes to who wins the competition, that is not something we will know for quite a while and although the start of proceedings seem still a long way away, that should not stop you from making your own travel plans.

Even though Qatar has a relatively small landmass when compared to previous host nations, it is still ready to open its arms to football fans in all corners of planet Earth and with 80 countries enjoying the ability to travel visa-free, that will be one less headache for you to worry about.

While when it comes to headaches, alcohol is still something of a sensitive issue within Qatar and although it is largely forbidden in day to day life, there will be the usual fan parks in place, in order for you to enjoy a beer or two.

In addition to that and if you are not in the vicinity of a fan park, you will be able to celebrate or commiserate with a beer in any of the licensed hotels or restaurants, but do check if such venues are in possession of the necessary license before booking.

Much has been made of the weather and with that in mind, you may want to swap the alcohol for water and keep the hydration levels at their maximum, especially when you consider the expected temperatures of 24 degrees Celsius.

The weather may be conducive to wearing less clothes than back home, but if making the trip to Qatar do please consider the local customs when it comes to clothing and for men, a pair of knee length shorts should be sufficient to keep the heat at bay and keep you comfortable.

By comparison and for the female of the species, a little more caution may be required and therefore the advice is, to dress modestly in public – a remit which advises against showing your shoulders or wearing a short skirt.

Before the tournament begins, nine stadiums will be newly created and three will be renovated, which means the seven host cities of Al-Daayen, Al-Khor, Al-Rayyan, Al-Shamal, Al-Wakrah, Doha and Umm Slal will be ready to host the 64 scheduled fixtures.

With this advice, all you need to do is book your flights and with the likes of British Airways, Qatar Airways, Iberia, Sri Lankan Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Japan Airlines, Air India, Jet Airways operating in the area, there is nothing from stopping you joining the party in 2022.

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Travel Tips

Consider alternative airlines when booking your next trip

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Whether you are a devoted Muslim wanting to finally make your Hajj, or just a tourist to Arabia and the Middle East who wants to get around cheaply, it’s important to not waste money needlessly on airlines.

Thankfully, competition has been heating up in the region for some years now. Lower cost airlines have been springing up all over the region over the past several years, and this benefits us, the consumers, immensely.

Pick a good portal

We have found in our experience that a great portal for selecting flights makes a big difference. We especially like one portal in particular, which we found recently digging around the internet. It’s called حجز طيران in Arabic but it works perfectly fine in English as well for the rest of us out there trying to get around the Arabic-speaking world without having mastered the language.

The power of secondary airports

Flyadeal, the people behind the portal in the above section, aren’t just a portal, they are an airline. The great thing about this airline is that they have a hub in a secondary city (Jeddah).

This is one of the secrets to saving money, if you can avoid the major airports, you usually avoid a lot of taxes and extra charges that wind up getting built into your tickets.

Secondary airports are often very close to major airports, sometimes surprisingly so. Finishing the last couple of hours of your trip by land can lead to major savings at the end of the day because of this.

Airlines are desperate right now

It’s no secret to anybody that 2020 has been a real rough year for airlines. Many of them seem to be even raising their prices, but ultimately, it’s the consumer who determines the price of something, not the provider.  Don’t panic if you start seeing high prices everywhere. Keep looking for alternatives and waiting. Outside of the immediate short term, the trend is going to be for the cost of travel to fall sharply, and this applies all over the world.

Established airlines may take more time than the newer more competitive airlines to get on board with pricing that’s going to be acceptable to consumers. That’s exactly why you need to use a good portal as a starting point, one that works with an increasingly large network of low-cost airlines.

Being adventurous will pay off in more ways than one. Not only are we stating right now that we believe it will be a lot cheaper on average to travel in the early days following the lifting of restrictions, we will predict that there will be amazing deals to be had everywhere.

And to top it off, you will have the run of places that are normally jam-packed with tourists and visitors. It will definitely pay off in spades to do some due diligence now and be on top of things. And that definitely starts with getting your alternative airline game on.

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Travel Tips

A Saudi low-cost airline English speakers may not be aware of

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Probably one of the hottest evergreen topics for a travel blog is and always is going to be how to get cheap air tickets to somewhere.

It’s true that there is no such thing as a permanent air travel hack, and also will probably always be true. People figure things out, and some months later the whole panorama has changed and their “great travel hack” is now just something that gives them the going rate.

However, maybe for this same reason, it’s more important than ever to keep on top of current trends. Things change, and we just come out with a new article informing you!

A new option for low cost flights based out of Saudi Arabia

فلاي أديل, known in English as Flyadeal or Fly Adele, is a new offering for those of us looking to get around the region and around the world quickly and, most importantly, cheaply.

The airline is based out of Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, and since it operates mostly on a hub model, many of the flights you book for them are based out of there. It only has three years in the market, and is very unfamiliar with English speakers and Westerners in general, so we feel that this is a very timely article. The airline is also making a big push in 2020 to globalize more and get customers from all over.

Great deals in the region

Low-cost air carriers are something that have been on the scene since decades ago in some markets. However, in the part of the world, where Flyadeal is operating, it’s still a novelty. We think it’s about time that someone gave the big established airlines some decent competition. It’s high time that the market get this kind of a dynamic, and it bodes very well for the future.

Many low-cost airlines (think JetBlue, for example), wind up with pricing close to and even above median pricing, especially as they gain a positive reputation. We are hoping that Flyadeal can maintain their competitive pricing as their reputation hopefully continues to grow. In the end, only time can tell what would happen.

Facts to remember about using Flyadeal

-You can access flights with this airline on many other travel-related sites. However, generally the best deals will be found going directly to their website.

-Keep in mind that Jeddah is the hub of this airline. You can use this fact and play around it to get the best deals on flights.

-Keep in mind the destinations this airline serves directly. You can often find something close to where you want to go and complete your trip by land for big savings.

-Corollary to the above, one of the destinations for this airline is as far as Manila as of this writing.

-There have been historic peace agreements signed in the very recent past, which are opening and should continue to open up new destinations for this airline.

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Meet Cole and Adela

Cole and AdelaWe have been wearing out our jandals (Kiwi for flip-flops) on our travel adventures around the world since 2009. We think our blog is thought provoking and a little witty. But we have been proven wrong before. Find out more about us here...

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