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Tibet & the Search for Shangri-La

15 Days from £3,099

Adventurous travellers won't want to miss this incredible tour of the Yunnan Province and Tibet.

Departure from: May 2019 - Oct 2019

OUR ROCK SOLID GUARANTEES

GUARANTEED DEPARTURES
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GUARANTEED PRICE MATCH
Our tours give you fantastic value for money, so we’re confident you won’t find a better price… but if you do, we’ll not only match it but give you £100.
GUARANTEED PRICE PROMISE
You deserve the best, and when you book early we guarantee you’ll get the best price available. If you see your holiday advertised for less than you paid, we’ll refund the difference.

YOUR HOLIDAY INCLUDES

 

  • Return flights from Heathrow with China Eastern Airlines and internal flights
  • 13 nights in 3 and 4-star hotels plus 1 night in flight 
  • 34 meals: 13 breakfasts, 10 lunches, 11 dinners
  • Travelsphere Tour Manager and Local Guide 
  • Overseas transfers and other transportation
  • Porterage
CLASSIC TOURING
HALF BOARD
ACTIVE PLUS

Included holiday highlights

  • Zhujiajao Water Town
  • Visit the Bund, Shanghai's Riverside boulevard
  • Sightseeing in Lijiang
  • Visit a local family in Naxi village
  • Visit Zhongdian, renamed Shangri-La
  • Yangtze valley and visit to a Tibetan village
  • Tour Barkhor Street and see Potala Square in Lhasa
  • The Jokhang temple and Sera Monastery 
  • Lhasa tour including UNESCO-listed Potala Palace
  • Opportunity to see a monk debating class
  • Yamdrok Lake, Palkhor Chöde Monastery and Gyanste's Old Town 
  • Explore Lhasa's Old Town
  • Sightseeing in Shanghai
  • Turn the world's largest prayer wheel
  • Dinner with a Tibetan​ family​





Your Itinerary

HIDE FULL ITINERARY

DAY 1 UK/Shanghai

You will depart on your scheduled flight to Shanghai today.

DAY 2 Shanghai

Shanghai is China's largest city, and on arrival we will transfer you to your hotel. Western culture and oriental charm collide in this modern metropolis, as you'll discover during your two-night stay.  

DAY 3 Shanghai

Your adventure begins with a chance to discover the Bund, Shanghai's famous riverside boulevard, lined with colonial-style buildings. You'll also visit the ancient water town of Zhujiajiao and see its 36 stone bridges which were built during the Ming and Qing Dynasties.​

DAY 4 Lijiang

This morning we will transfer you to the airport for your flight to Lijiang, where you'll stay for the next two nights. Lijiang is the capital of the Naxi Kingdom and is surrounded by fields and forests. On arrival we will explore the charming Old Town, steeped in history and natural beauty.

DAY 5 Lijiang

Today we'll visit the fascinating Yufeng Temple and Monastery, where an ancient 500-year-old camellia tree still blossoms in the spring. Next we're going to visit a family in a local Naxi village and learn about their intriguing culture. After lunch we'll visit the beautiful Black Dragon Pool. A number of ancient monuments surround the water, and on a clear day you'll enjoy fabulous views of Jade Dragon Snow Mountain.

If you want to discover more about the Naxi people, you can attend an optional Naxi concert this evening - a performance of traditional music played by local people. The average age of the musicians is 60, and it is feared that as the years pass this old tradition may be lost forever.

DAY 6 Zhongdian

A journey by bus takes us to Zhongdian, the town now known as Shangri-La. Its name was changed in 2001 to associate it with the paradise-like world featured in the novel, Lost Horizon. Along the way we'll stop to enjoy a picnic lunch and admire spectacular views of Haba Snow Mountain. We'll also visit Yi, a traditional village and see the scenic First Bend of the Yangtze River. When we arrive in Zhongdian, a tour will introduce us to its interesting Old Town and we'll see and turn the world's largest prayer wheel.

DAY 7 Zhongdian

Today you'll see the fascinating Songzanling Monastery. Built in the 17th century, it has a gilded copper roof and at one time about 3,000 monks are thought to have lived and studied here. Later, we'll drive to Dabaosi and meet a family in a traditional Tibetan village. We'll step inside a house, learn about local life and visit the Dabao Temple. Amid the spiritual surroundings you can buy Tibetan prayer flags and Yak butter candles if you wish.

DAY 8 Lhasa

We'll fly to Lhasa, in Tibet, this morning. This immensely spiritual region boasts breathtaking scenery, impressive monasteries, ancient temples and friendly people who are proud of their culture.
The remote city of Lhasa lies at an altitude of 3,650 metres and our sightseeing starts after lunch when we visit the old part of Lhasa, Barkhor Street. We'll also see the fascinating Potala Square and monument to the peaceful liberation of Tibet.​

DAY 9 Lhasa

Today's highlight is a visit to the Jokhang temple, the spiritual heart of Tibet. Pilgrims come from across the country to worship at this sacred site which houses a revered golden image of Buddha. Climb to the top and you will be rewarded with fabulous views of Lhasa. We'll also visit the magnificent Sera Monastery and watch as the red-robed monks debate Buddhist doctrines.​
Tonight you'll have dinner with a Tibetan family.​

DAY 10 Lhasa

We're going to see not one, but two, UNESCO-listed sites today. We'll begin at the ancient Potala Palace, an impressive 1,000–room building which overlooks Lhasa from a hilltop position. Then we'll head to Norbulingka, a former residence of the Dalai Lama, set within beautiful gardens. Later, you'll have time for a spot of shopping in Lhasa's Old Town.​

DAY 11 Gyantse

Our day begins with a drive to the spectacular Yamdrok Lake. Surrounded by snow-capped peaks it is one of the largest sacred lakes in Tibet. Next we'll head to Gyantse to see the Palkhor Chöde Monastery, a fascinating complex which includes the famous Kumbum Stupa. This awe-inspiring structure is thought to be the largest of its kind in Tibet. We'll also take in Gyantse's traditional Old Town.​

DAY 12 Lhasa

This morning, there is an opportunity to explore Gyantse as you wish before we drive back to Lhasa this aft​ernoon.

DAY 13 Shanghai

Enjoy a morning at leisure in Lhasa and time to reflect on all the wonderful experiences we have shared during our time in Tibet. After lunch we'll drive to the airport ready for our flight back to Shanghai.​

DAY 14 Shanghai

We'll explore the lively city of Shanghai on a guided tour this morning. Highlights include the Oriental Pearl TV Tower and the Old Town. You'll have time for some last-minute shopping, and for spectacular views of the city, there's the option of a Huangpu River cruise. Sights you'll see include the Yangpu and Nanpu Bridges, the Monument to the People's Heroes, the Bund, the Wu Song ancient gun fort relics and the Pudong Business District, which boasts a dramatic skyline.
This evening we'll get together for a farewell dinner.

DAY 15 Shanghai/UK

We will transfer you to the airport for your flight back to the UK, arriving later the same day.​


Accommodation

Every hotel you will stay in on your holiday is hand-picked by us. We relish the challenge of finding the right accommodation for each and every tour, whether it's chosen for its location, its facilities or its downright quirkiness.

HIDE ACCOMMODATION ITINERARY

Day 2 - 3 :

Jin Jiang Tower Hotel
Jin Jiang Hotel Shanghai is situated in downtown Shanghai. Hotel facilities include three restaurants, café, Lobby Lounge, Gymnasium, Beauty Salon and Sauna.

Day 4 - 5 :

Lijiang Palace Hotel
Located on the south gate of the old town, featuring tranquil old-world architecture, a peaceful garden atmosphere, and flowing dark-wood walkways, the Wang Fu hotel is located in a quiet area close to the Old Town centre. The hotel has a restaurant serving Western and Chinese dishes, as well as a bar, a fitness centre and outdoor pool. All rooms feature en-suite facilities, TV, internet access, minibar and tea/coffee making facilities.

Day 6 - 7 :

Paradise Hotel
Paradise Hotel is situated in Shangri-La in the Yunnan Region. Rooms are air-conditioned, with a flat screen TV and hairdryer. Hotel amenities include a restaurant, fitness centre, and free Wi-Fi.

Day 8 - 10 :

Kyichu Hotel
Named after the Kyichu River which in Tibet is known as "The River of Happiness". A tributary of the Yarlung Tsangpo and the cradle of the ancient Tibetan civilisation, the river meanders through the fertile valley in which the fabled and formerly forbidden city of Lhasa is situated. Located between the sacred temple of Jokhang in Barkhor Square and the famed World Heritage Potala Palace and minutes away from traditional quarters of Lhasa. Hotel features include 24-hour hot and cold running water, indoor/outdoor garden restaurant with umbrella tables, North Indian, Tandoori and Nepalese chefs. Being treated as a family member and getting individual attention, making it your base will let you enjoy complete satisfaction service offered by the friendly and knowledgeable English-speaking staff.

Day 11 :

Gyantse Hotel
Built in 1986, hotel is located in the ancient city centre of Gyantse town. The hotel includes single, double and triple rooms with attached bathrooms. The hotel has 3 restaurants supporting almost 300 people. The hotel and room amenities include front helpdesk, Western/Tibetan-styled guestrooms, laundry, business centre, shopping centre, restaurants, bar, internet, cafe nearby, private bathrooms, 24-hour hot and cold water, boiled water in thermos, IDD telephone, colour/cable TV, writing desk, room service.

Day 12 :

Kyichu Hotel
Named after the Kyichu River which in Tibet is known as "The River of Happiness". A tributary of the Yarlung Tsangpo and the cradle of the ancient Tibetan civilisation, the river meanders through the fertile valley in which the fabled and formerly forbidden city of Lhasa is situated. Located between the sacred temple of Jokhang in Barkhor Square and the famed World Heritage Potala Palace and minutes away from traditional quarters of Lhasa. Hotel features include 24-hour hot and cold running water, indoor/outdoor garden restaurant with umbrella tables, North Indian, Tandoori and Nepalese chefs. Being treated as a family member and getting individual attention, making it your base will let you enjoy complete satisfaction service offered by the friendly and knowledgeable English-speaking staff.

Day 13 - 14 :

Jin Jiang Tower Hotel
Jin Jiang Hotel Shanghai is situated in downtown Shanghai. Hotel facilities include three restaurants, café, Lobby Lounge, Gymnasium, Beauty Salon and Sauna.


Dates and Prices

 
DEPARTURE
DATE
DEPARTING
FROM
DEPARTURE
WAS
NOW
STATUS
 

SAT 18 MAY 19

London (Heathrow)

GUARANTEED

£3,199

£3,099

Available

Outbound
China Eastern Airlines

Saturday 18 May 2019

Departs

21:00 London (Heathrow)

Arrives

16:00 Shanghai (Pu Dong)

Operated by

China Eastern Airlines

Inbound
China Eastern Airlines - MU

Saturday 01 June 2019

Departs

12:30 Shanghai (Pu Dong)

Arrives

17:50 London (Heathrow)

Operated by

China Eastern Airlines

SAT 12 OCT 19

London (Heathrow)

GUARANTEED

£3,299

£3,149

Available

Outbound
China Eastern Airlines

Saturday 12 October 2019

Departs

21:00 London (Heathrow)

Arrives

16:00 Shanghai (Pu Dong)

Operated by

China Eastern Airlines

Inbound
China Eastern Airlines - MU

Saturday 26 October 2019

Departs

12:30 Shanghai (Pu Dong)

Arrives

17:50 London (Heathrow)

Operated by

China Eastern Airlines

Travelsphere have made every effort to ensure the accuracy of the hotel images provided on this website and images of room types displayed may vary to those offered on your tour. Therefore due to the possibility of inadvertent errors we do not guarantee their accuracy. Hotels, airlines used and flight times are subject to change and will be confirmed in your final documents.

Optional Excursions

Experience even more of your destination by adding one or more optional excursions to your holiday before you set off. Right now is the perfect opportunity to do that – with everything booked and paid for you’ll have even more to get excited about and all you’ll need to think about while you’re away is having a great time.

By the way - look out for ‘Optional Excursion Packages’. For some holidays we’ve grouped a selection of excursions into a package which means you can make a saving when you book in advance.

Prices shown may vary according to departure date and are subject to change.  The full range of excursions will be detailed in your holiday information pack, sent approximately 15 weeks prior to departure.

Naxi Concert

FROM £28

The Naxi people, who are long-time inhabitants of Lijiang, have created a unique and splendid concert to celebrate their cullture. This includes the Dongba culture which is primarily based on the local religion, and touches every aspect of daily life. Music and dance are also the two treasured cornerstones of the mysterious Dongba Every night from 20:00 to 21:30 there is a wonderful concert performed by a group of local senior musicians in the centre of Lijiang, as the average age of the musicians is 60 years old this tradition is dying away as the number musicians who have mastered this traditional skill has dwindled year after year.

Minimal Walking – Cultural – Legendary

ADD TO TOUR AT CHECKOUT

China - Shanghai Cruise by Night

FROM £30

Shanghai Cruise by Night – was Shanghai by Night (Boat)

Cruising on the Huangpu River is an important tradition in Shanghai. Architectural buildings on the West Bank of Huangpu River stand opposite various modern skyscrapers on the East Bank. Take our boat tour along the Huang Pu River where you can take a glimpse of Yangpu Bridge, Nanpu Bridge and see many of Shanghai's famous sites such as the People's Hero Monument, the Bund (Wai Tan), the Oriental Pearl TV Tower and the dramatic skyline of the Pu Dong business district. Also, in view of the river is the bustling International Passenger Station of Shanghai Harbour, the docks and the Wu Song ancient Gun Fort relics.

1 hour cruise- Minimal Walking - Scenic

ADD TO TOUR AT CHECKOUT

Add-on

Take the opportunity to maximise your travel experience and extend your holiday with an add-on. The number of days shown is inclusive of the main tour and the price shown is in addition to the cost of the main tour:

Tibet & the Search for Shangri-La with Hong Kong Add-on

Extend your holiday to 19 days from £949

May 2019 - Oct 2019 Departures

On the final day of your brochure holiday you will transfer to the airport for your flight to Hong Kong, where you will stay for four nights. Hong Kong is known for its diverse culture, spectacular skyline and glittering natural harbour. And with its unique blend of fascinating museums, stunning country parks and vibrant festivals, you’re sure to leave with lasting memories of your time here. During your stay, we include a morning sightseeing tour of Hong Kong Island, with stops including the top of Victoria Peak, Repulse Bay and the fishing village of Aberdeen. The rest of your time is free for you to explore at your own pace - or, if you prefer, you can choose from an exciting range of optional excursions. Your Hong Kong option includes: Scheduled flights; overseas transfers; 4 nights’ accommodation on a bed and- breakfast basis; the services of a Local Representative; all airport taxes and security charges; all state and local taxes.

Local Knowledge

We asked some of our Tour Managers to sum up what they really love about this tour. Here's what they said:

Local Knowledge

“Take the path that circles the Potala Palace and join local Tibetans as they pray for peace and long life”


Unique Hong Kong Experiences

Choose our optional Hong Kong add-on and you'll conclude your holiday in style with a stay in one of the world's most dynamic and exciting cities.

Sophisticated, cosmopolitan with a spectacular skyline and harbour, Hong Kong is Asia’s World City. It is a unique blend of East and West, successfully combining contemporary style with over 5,000 years of ancient Chinese heritage. Hong Kong offers so many fantastic attractions and events that will leave a lasting impression of this wonderful city.

Skyline viewpoints

From gleaming skyscrapers to peaceful outlying islands, Hong Kong has breathtaking viewpoints. There are many beautiful sights to see in Hong Kong but the most popular attraction is The Peak, the highest point on Hong Kong Island. Visitors can travel to the top of The Peak by a tram service and admire the view of skyscrapers and Victoria Harbour all the way to the green hills of the New Territories.

Buzzing street markets

For shopaholics, Hong Kong offers a vast contrast and choice of shopping experiences from bustling markets to ultra modern malls and department stores. Visitors should head to the Mongkok District for a chance to practice their haggling skills on goods such as clothing, watches, bags, home furnishings, CDs and trinkets. For more market action other options include Temple Street night market and Ho Hung Kee in Causeway Bay.

Outlying islands

To escape the hustle and bustle of city life, Hong Kong has over 260 outlying islands to explore. Lantau Island is a great choice to experience the Hong Kong countryside and admire the beautiful greenery. Visitors can take the NP360 cable car to see this other side of the city. They can climb to the top of the Big Buddha statue and also visit the Tai O Fishing Village.

Victoria Harbour tram
Hong Kong Food Market
Big Buddha statue, Lantau Island

Culture and heritage

Hong Kong’s culture is a melting pot of customs and traditions, influenced by thousands of years of immigration. Wherever you look in the city, there is a story to be told that will take you back centuries. The Sik Sik Yuen Wong Tai Sin Temple is a scenic attraction to visit due to its beautiful ornate building and rich history, it a perfect opportunity to see the cultural side to Hong Kong.

Harbour cruise

Hong Kong has emerged as one of the world’s most fast-paced and dynamic cities. With beautiful harbour views there is no better way to see Hong Kong than a harbour cruise. Start off your trip my taking a ride on one of the traditional Chinese junk boats and tour the Victoria Harbour with the best view in the house.

World-class cuisine

With over 11,000 restaurants Hong Kong is known as the ‘Culinary Capital of Asia’; ranging from Michelin star dining to street stalls, it is a gourmet paradise. It is also home to the cheapest Michelin starred restaurant in the world, Tim Ho Wan, and other lovely local eateries, there is something for everyone.

Wong Tai Sin Temple
Junk boat, Victoria Harbour
Dim Sum

Beautiful beaches

Hong Kong’s coastal area has a rich array of beaches, coves, bays, cliffs, arches and sea caverns just waiting to be explored. Repulse Bay is one of the most popular beaches with both locals and visitors, it is ideal for beach strolls or to enjoy a beautiful sunset. This crescent-shaped stretch of sand is one of the most stunning beaches in Hong Kong.

Great outdoors

Hong Kong has a rich natural side with quaint villages and beautiful rolling mountains. Visitors can hike, camp and enjoy the green country parks away from the busy city. Sai Kung is known as the 'back garden of Hong Kong', a great area to fish or sail in the sheltered waters, BBQ or sunbathe on secluded beaches, and swim or snorkel in the clear blue waters.

Rooftop bars

To escape the hustle and bustle of city life, Hong Kong has over 260 outlying islands to explore. Lantau Island is a great choice to experience the Hong Kong countryside and admire the beautiful greenery. Visitors can take the NP360 cable car to see this other side of the city. They can climb to the top of the Big Buddha statue and also visit the Tai O Fishing Village.



Travelsphere Cares: Supporting Local Community Children

Travelsphere CaresMany Tibetans are held back by a lack of education and even though three quarters of Tibetan children enter elementary school, less than half of them continue to middle school. Although schools are free and even the poorest families consider education important, many of them cannot send their children to school due to the lack of schools in rural communities, or the necessity for children to help their parents with agricultural work. The most common solution taken by poor families is to spend what little money they have for the education of only one child, while others often cannot read or write.

At Travelsphere we believe in giving back to the communities we visit, supporting various charities and helping people in need all over the world. In Tibet we support a local village in Lhasa by providing vital materials to aid their children’s education.