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Itinerary Name: 6 Days Tibetan Area Tour in Gansu & Qinghai Provinces - Lanzhou, Hezuo, Xiahe, Tongren, Xining
Day 1
Arrive in Lanzhou city (capital of Gansu Province) at Noon, Lanzhou - Hezuo - Xiahe County Town by Car
Meal:Not included in the quotation
Hotel:In Xiahe County Town

On your arrival in Lanzhou city for your exciting journey, you will be met at the airport or train station by your personal guide, who will take care of you during this journey. If you need any advice, tips or help please just ask your guide. 

 

After lunch, drive south for around 240 km/4 hours to Xiahe County at 2900m altitude. On the way, in Huzuo, the capital of Gannan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Gansu Province, to visit the famous Milariba Buddha Tower. The Milarepa place itself is a very unique structure with 9 stories. Each floor is like a separate temple with Buddha figurines, Thangkas, precious stones, urns etc etc. It is dark and calm (and calming) as only the inner sanctum of a Tibetan Buddhist place of workship can be.

  

Day 2
Tour in Xiahe County
Meal:Not included in the quotation
Hotel:In Xiahe County Town

Today the first place you will visit is the famous Labrang Monastery. Founded in 1709 by the Yellow Hat Sect (Gelukpa) of Tibetan Buddhism, Labrang Monastery is one of the six very important Yellow Hat Sect monasteries in China. In terms of size it is second largest one, only next to the Potala Palace in Lhasa. In Tibetan, Labrang means the place where the Buddhist Palace stands. The present head monk, 3rd in religious importance behind the Dalai and Panchen Lamas, is the sixth incarnation of the Jiemuyang. Within the monastery there has been built 6 Sutra Halls, 84 Buddha halls of different size and period. 

 

When entering Labrang you are able to appreciate the supernatural and recondite Tibetan Buddhism, you can visit the relics with long history, enjoy recitation of the sutra and find out thousands of monks, pilgrims and learners in an endless stream. Labrang also has voluminous Tibetan sutra and is home to six famous colleges. Labrang Monastery happens to be the largest Tibetology university in the world. 

  

Afterwards, you will drive north for around 20 km to the charming GanJia Prairie. a Shangri-La like area covered with pretty and dense grass. Without any commercial development, the picturesque and mysterious Ganjia Prairie a flat and vast pasture on plateau and a piece of clean land where human beings and the nature coexist peacefully and harmoniously.  

   

Tourists can enjoy the natural but extremely enchanting wild scenery, White Stone Cliff Hills, and the mysterious ancient Octagonal City, White Stone Cliff Cave and White Stone Cliff Temple. This grassland mainly distributes in Maqu, Xiahe and Luqu counties. The vast Maqu prairie is the largest ecological wetland located at the first curve of the Yellow River as the paradise of the local Hequ Horse, ack-necked crane, swine, goa and spotted deer. You can enjoy fascinating scenes decorated by various flowers and birds on the lush grassland in summer and autumn. Blue sky, white cloud and clear water deliver a beautiful picturesque view of prairie with the snowy mountains standing afar.

 

 

Day 3
Xiahe County in Gansu Province - Longwu Town in Qinghai Province by Car
Meal:Not included in the quotation
Hotel:In Longwu Town

In the morning, drive west for around 120km / 3 hours from Xiahe County town, cross the border between Gansu Province and Qinghai Province, to Longwu Town at 2500 m altitude. You will visit the famous Longwu Monastery in the town.  

 

Longwu Town, the capital of Huang Nan Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, is a small monastic town situated on Tibetan Plateau in Qinghai Province that attracts great number of pilgrims and art-oriented travelers. There are three temples inside the town: Longwu Monastery, Yuantong Temple, and the Mosque (which serve Tibetan Buddhism, Han Buddhism and Islam respectively), but it’s Wutun Monastery, located just outside of the town, that attracts most visitors. It’s famous for producing some of Tibetan world’s best Thangkas – religious paintings that depict Buddhist deities, scenes from the sutras or mandalas. 

  

Here is the land of Regong Art, UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage, including paintings (murals and scrolls called "Thangka" in Tibetan) clay and wooden sculptures, barbola, color paintings on buildings, patterns, butter sculptures, and so on. Among these, the paintings, sculptures and designs are most famous. 

 

This area is also the birthplace of Regong Art which is a successful mixture of religious arts and local folk arts by the local Tibetan and local Tu ethnic minorities. It is the birthplace of Anduo Tibetan Plays which is presented at many local festivals. 

   

Named after Longwo River upon which the monastery was built, Longwu Monastery is situated at the southwestern end of Longwu town, about 180km away from Xining, capital of Qinghai. As one of the oldest and largest Gelupa monasteries in the world, the Longmu Monastery was initially established in 1301. 

 

The Longwu Monastery faces to the east and with a large architecture scale. Tourists can visit many halls including the main prayer hall (Grand Sutra Hall) and Great Golden Pagoda in it to enjoy the valuable cultural relics and find arts, including numerous Buddha statues, Thangka paintings, architectural arts and so on in the monastery. 

 

More about Longwu Monastery at Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rongwo_Monastery
More travel guide of Tongren County at Wikipeida: https://en.wikivoyage.org/wiki/Tongren

 

Day 4
LongwuTown - Xining City by Car
Meal:Not included in the quotation
Hotel:In Xining

In the morning, Visit Wutun Monastery which is around 7 km to Longwu Town to enjoy the master pieces of famous Regong Art. After lunch, drive to Xining city at 2280m altitude, the capital of Qinghai Province (around 180km/3 hours). Overnight in Xining city tonight. 

 

Wutun Monastery

With a reputation unequalled in the Tibetan world, many visitors come here exclusively to see the monasterys collection of centuries old Thanka paintings and watch the resident artists continuing the tradition. Though the art is undoubtedly the headliner, the rebuilt grounds are a fine example of modern Tibetan architecture elaborately decorated with brightly painted wood carvings. The complex is divided into upper and lower monasteries, each with its own set of prayer halls, courtyards and artist studios. Some say upper feels more authentic and holds the best art but the lowers towering gold-tipped gompa is quite impressive. Please note: In Summer (July to early September), women are not allowed to enter the monastery.

 

 

Day 5
One Day Tour to Qinghai Lake (at around 3200m altitude)
Meal:Not included in the quotation
Hotel:In Xining

Today, you will drive for around 150km/3 hours to Qinghai Lake, the largest lake in China. On the way, you will pass the endless grassland and the famous Sun & Moon Mountain.

 

Classified as a saline and alkaline lake and at 3,205 m (10,515 ft) above sea level, called West Sea in ancient time, Qinghai Lake has a surface area of 4,317 sq km (1,667 sq mi); an average depth of 21 m (69 ft), and a maximum depth of 25.5 m (84 ft) as measured in 2008. The lake is surrounded by 4 high mountains with height of 3,600-5,000m, which is like 4 high natural barriers closely encircling Qinghai Lake.  

 

Look out on the side of Qinghai Lake, you can see the distant green mountains encircling each other; green lake water, wave ripping; green grassland, sheep group like clouds. Around Qinghai Lake is the boundless grassland. With the flat topography, enough water resource, and temperate weather, the lake is a natural pasture with lush grasses. Prairie in summer and autumn is very green just like a blanket. The titian rape flowers emanate fragrance towards wind; tents of herdsmen spread all over the place; herds of cattle and sheep move like clouds. The charming scenery of sunrise and sunset is full of poetic and pictorial splendor, which makes people carefree and happy. 

More detail about Qinghai Lake at Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qinghai_Lake

 

Day 6
Tour in Xining, Leave Xining
Meal:Not included in the quotation
Hotel:

Today in the morning, you will visit Ta’er Monastery which is around 25km to the southwest of Xining city. Standing in an imposing manner according to the gradient of the mountain, the Taer Lamasery is a wonderful architectural complex that embraces 9,300 structures, including scripture halls, Buddha halls, lamas residences, and Buddhist pagodas. Built in 1622, in the center of the entire complex, the Great Hall of Gold Tiles is the core structure of the lamasery. The ridges of the halls roof are decorated with auspicious objects such as treasure bottles, gold streamers, and gold deer. In the center of the hall is a silver pagoda built around a pipal tree; and a statue of Tsongkhapa (1357-1419), the founder of the Yellow Sect (Gelug Sect) of Tibetan Buddhism, is placed in the pagoda. In the hall there also exists a collection of hundreds of works by Tsongkhapa and his disciples as well as hand-written copies of scriptures in Tibetan and Mongolian. 

More detail of the Taer Monaster, you can visit:
http://www.yellowsheepriver.com/~qh000001/eng/intro/index.php 

  

Afterwards, transfer to the Xining Airport or railway station. Your guide will look after you until your safety at the correct airport check-in desk or railway station check-in channel to complete your amazing tour.