Travel from mainland China to Tibet and experience the splendour of the ancient Shoton Festival on this 8-day tour. Begin and end in the capital of Sichuan – Chengdu – and journey into Lhasa, the capital and spiritual heart of Tibet. Here you will encounter ancient mythology, historic temples and rich and fascinating culture the region is known for. Watch pandas at a research centre in Chengdu, discover the grand former residence of the Dalai Lama, be captivated by a monk debate and celebrate Shoton with locals and pilgrims.
- Experience the vibrant celebrations and grand traditions of Tibet’s Shoton Festival, like the mountainside unveiling of a 40-metre-high Thangka and a traditional outdoor opera.
- Watch giant pandas munch bamboo, relax and play at Chengdu’s Panda Breeding Centre and learn about what is being done to help this threatened species.
- Immerse yourself in Tibet’s Lhasa, exploring the grand Potala Palace – formerly the residence of the Dalai Lama – and wandering among pilgrims at Jokhang Temple.
- Watch monks debate each other on tenants of Buddhism in a highly stylised and theatrical discussion at the Sera Monastery, a fascinating spectacle even if you can’t speak Tibetan.
- Walk the kora circuit around Ganden Monastery to get a real sense of this meditative practise, then enjoy a serene picnic lunch with a view of the Lhasa River.
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