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DAY 11:


Arrive in Kathmandu airport and transfer to hotel Pilgrims will arrive for a meet and greet at the Tribhuvan International Airport. Our trekking guide will arrange an immediate transfer to the hotel. A detailed briefing on immediate and further arrangements will be delivered with a welcome dinner.

DAY 01

Detailed Itinerary
DAY 07:
Drive to Manasarovar Lake (4,588m) 350km, 6-7 hour drive Early in the morning, we will begin our journey to Manasarovar Lake, considered to be the holiest lake by Hindus, Buddhists and other spiritual seekers. It is a 6-7 hours long overland journey. It is an important day of the pilgrimage, as we will have our first glimpse of holy Mt. Kailash and Manasarovar Lake.

Cross over the Dolma La (5,700m) and trek to Zutrulphuk (4,700m). Today is the one of the most significant and arduous days of our journey as we traverse the challenging Dolma La Pass (5,700m). Dolma La Pass is the highest pass along the Mt. Kailash circuit route. It is believed that Dakinis (celestial female deities) come to this pass to perform prayers. We will also stop at this point to festoon prayer flags and leave some personal mementoes and aspirational prayers. From there, we will follow the gradual trail to Zutrulphuk. It takes 7-8 hours to reach Zutrulphuk from Driraphuk.

DAY 12:
Trek to Darchen (4,650m) We will visit the highly revered Zutrulphuk Gompa, which is also associated the Tibetan yogi saint, Milarepa. It is believed that Milarepa meditated in this cave of Zutrulphuk Gompa and even left his fingerprints on the upper ceiling of the cave while he was trying to push the gigantic rock to make it just perfect size for his yoga practice.

DAYS 02-03:
Explore the best of Kathmandu Valley After breakfast we begin an exploration of important religious, cultural and historical sites, monuments, temples and monasteries of Kathmandu, Patan and Bhaktapur. We will also practice yoga in important power points such as Pashupatinath temple, while exploring the city.

DAY 04:
Drive to Nyalam (3,700m) After having our breakfast in the morning, we will drive to Nyalam. It takes 4-5 hours to reach the friendship bridge. After passing through Nepalese and Chinese immigrations, we will drive to Nyalam via Zhanmou, the border city. We then begin a scenic drive along the friendship highway (Kodari Highway), experiencing the rural culture and lifestyle of the people of Nepal.

DAY 05:
A day in Nyalam (3,700m) To continue to acclimatize our group will spend an extra day at Nyalam where we will visit Milarepas Cave and other sites of scenic beauties within the vicinity. We will explore the cave and monastery where great Tibetan yogi and saint Milarepa meditated on his path to enlightenment. We will also mediate in the monastery to deepen our own practice.

A day at Manasarovar Lake/Chiu Gompa This day is dedicated to immersion in the healing and spiritual power of the region. We will practice yoga, meditation, ritually bathe in the sacred Manasarovar Lake and visit Chiu Gompa, an important monastery. It is said that taking a ritual dip in the Manasarovar Lake not only brings good health and good luck, but also helps to cleanse the karma of a lifetime. Lake Manasarovar is viewed as the feminine aspect of Mt. Kailash and a physical manifestation of the Goddess. We will explore the Chiu Gompa where Guru Rinpoche (Padmashambhava) is said to have meditated for several months with his Tibetan consort Yeshe Tsogyal.

DAY 08:

DAY 13:
Inner Kora is regarded as the most important and significant circumambulation of Mt. Kailash. It is traditionally believed that one must perform thirteen koras around Mt. Kailash to accumulate the spiritual merit and purity to perform the inner kora. The one exception is made during the year of wooden horse, when the merits of visiting Mt. Kailash are sufficiently multiplied, making that years pilgrims eligible. This occurs only once every 60 years. The inner kora is significantly more physically challenging than the outer kora. The inner kora takes us closer the Mt. Kailash towards thirteen stupas (Buddhist shrines) built just below the base of the mountain. As we need to cross glacial stream and walk on glacial rocks, we must be physically fit and in sound health. It takes 12-14 hours to complete the inner kora.

DAY 09:
Explore Khyunglung, Gurughyam Monastery and Tirthapuri and drive to Tharboche Today is another important day as we will drive to Khyunglung where the ancient Bon religion once thrived before the advent of Buddhism in Tibet. After exploring ruins of the capital of the Bon civilization, we will drive to Gurughyam Monastery, a highly revered Bon monastery. Next we will drive to Tirthapuri, a holy site for Buddhist and Jain people. Tirthapuri is nestled on the bank of Sutlej River, one of the four holiest rivers that originate four cardinal direction of holy Mt. Kailash.

DAY 14:
Drive to Drongpa After breakfast, we will retrace our way back and drive to the eastern shore of Lake Manasarovar. We will take our final holy dip into the lake and drive to Drongpa. It takes 5-6 hours to reach Drongpa. Overnight in tents.

DAY 06:
Drive to Saga (4,250m) 230km, 5-6 hour drive After morning meditation and then breakfast, we will drive to Saga. We will drive through three high passes over 5,200m. All these passes offer spectacular views of high and holy mountains of Tibet and Nepal. We will also have a stop at Pigu Tso, a turquoise colored glacial lake, to practice yoga and enjoy the scenery. We will encounter a variety of Tibetan wildlife.

DAY 10:
Observe Saga Dawa Festival and trek to Driraphuk (4,900m) On day 10, we will observe the Saga Dawa Festival and embark upon our kora (holy circumambulation) around Mt. Kailash itself. We will begin our trek after having breakfast and observing the important flagpole raising festivities. We will follow the Lha Tsu Valley (Gods valley), walking clockwise and keeping Mt. Kailash on our right hand side. We will also visit Yama Dwar (The Gate of Angel of Death). It takes 3-4 hours to reach Driraphuk from Tharboche. The terrain is very, very gradual and path is easy. Today we will also see symmetrical North Face of Mt. Kailash. We will practice yoga and meditate on the lap of Mt. Kailash. We will also visit Driraphuk Monastery.

DAY 15:
Drive to Pigutso Lake We will drive to Lake Pigutso. Overnight in tents.

DAY 16:
Drive to Kathmandu Today, we will drive to Kathmandu. Overnight in standard tourist hotel.

DAY 17:
A leisure day Farewell dinner. Overnight in the same hotel.

DAY 18:
Trip concludes.



$4975 usd


All ground transports including airport pickup and transfers Hotels in Kathmandu Yoga and meditation classes All sightseeing in Kathmandu and Tibet as mentioned in the itinerary with applicable entry fees Basic guest houses in Tibet wherever needed All equipment and gear for camping in Tibet All meals in Tibet (from day 04-16) Tibet Travel Documents and permits 4WD Land cruiser in Tibet (max. 4 persons in a land cruiser) Support truck to carry our necessary supplies Fluent English speaking, knowledgeable, and expert Tibetan and Nepali tour guides Highly experienced support staff All necessary kitchen equipment and food supplies Yaks to carry our supplies during kora

june 3rd

20th, 2014

John Allen Gibel is a yoga teacher, filmmaker, co-founder of Yoga Ascent, and began organizing wilderness retreats in 2010. Having been immersed in the practice and study of yoga at an early age, he has had the opportunity to experiment with and explore various traditions and schools. Initially trained in Ashtanga yoga, John Allen then met his primary teacher Ani Drubgyudma, a forest hermit nun. John Allen has lived and travelled extensively in Nepal, studying the practices of Himalayan mountain yogis. Presently, John Allen is working in collaboration with Mountain Ecological Treks in Nepal to organize yoga retreats that emphasize the sacred sites of the yoga tradition, as well as the social and ecological aspects of the spiritual path. In founding Yoga Ascent, John Allen hopes to connect practitioners with the sacred environments of the yogic path through pilgrimage and adventure, while supporting the conservation of those places in dialogue with the cultures and people who inhabit them.

If there is any place where the divine intersects our world, it is Mt. Kailash. In the Skanda Purana, an ancient Hindu text, Mount Kailash is identified as Mt. Meru, the mystical center of creation. For Hindu believers, it is the sacred abode of Lord Shiva and his consort, Parvati. Thus, all Hindus aspire to have even a glance of Mt. Kailash in their lifetime. It is believed that making a holy circumambulation around the base of Mt. Kailash helps to purify the negativities of ones lifetime. Similarly, Mt. Kailash is also associated with Buddhist, Jain, and Bon peoples. It is a cultural and religious meeting ground of the great spiritual traditions of Asia, as well as a unique geographical landmark. Being the home of the God Shiva, Kailash is closely associated with the origins of yoga. It was at Kailash where T. Krishnamacharya, the most influential yogi of the 20th century, lived in retreat for 7 years and learned yoga from his guru before bringing it back to India. During the Wood-Horse year of 2014 according to Tibetan astrology, the spiritual benefits of the pilgrimage are said to be multiplied exponentially, allowing first-time pilgrims to traverse the inner circuit of the mountain. This rare occurrence happens only once every 60 years. The expedition to Mt. Kailash is not just an ordinary journey, but is a pilgrimage to the mystical heart of yoga. Due to the high altitude, rugged terrain, and simple infrastructure; the trip is arduous. Reasonably good physical fitness, sound health and heartfelt determination are required to have a pleasant and successful Kailash trip.