Experience the Roof-of-the-World Railway
7-Day Tibet Tour by Train from Xining
The Qinghai-Tibet Railway, highest and longest plateau railway in the world, took China 30 years to finish. It was a "mission impossible" and is a testament to the wisdom and hard work of the engineers and workers.
Take the "roof-of-the-world railway" to enjoy incredible scenery in virtually uninhabited parts of the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau and explore mysterious Tibet with this 7-day Tibet tour. (cht-tb-01)
Tour 'Wow' Points
Enjoy the Plateau Scenery along the Qinghai-Tibet Railway
Take an overnight train to witness the unique plateau landscape including great snow-topped mountain ranges, peaceful rivers, vast meadows, and running animals on the Hoh Xil ('Blue Ridge') no-man's land.
Appreciate the Hand-Made Butter Flower Buddhist Offerings
Visit one of the top six monasteries of the most-dominant Gelug (Yellow Hat) Sect of Tibetan Buddhism, which is outside Tibet in Xining. Admire its three treasures: murals, butter sculptures, and embroideries.
Pilgrimage to the Palace That's 'Closest to Heaven'
Immerse yourself in the exquisite chambers on the Potala Palace. Discover the secrets of building this amazing palace.
Walk a Local Tibetan Kora (Religious Circuit) on Barkhor Street
Feel the piety of local Tibetans as you see them worship with their whole body touching the ground. Explore a local market to experience Tibetan daily life and sit in a peaceful nunnery for a cup of sweet tea that's loved by locals.
Enjoy a Picnic on the Bank of the Holy Lake
Pilgrimage to the Lake Yamdrok and enjoy a picnic at the loneliest lamasery in Tibet with an exclusive view of the lake.
Why Choose Us
Your Wellbeing is Our Priority.
- 1-to-1 travel expert
- Vaccinated guides
- Private Rides
Your Trip is Perfectly Planned.
- No crowds
- Exclusive Exciting Experiences
Your Booking is Risk-Free.
- No cancellation fee
- Free changes
Finish Your Booking in as Quick as 1 Day
About China Highlights
Since 1998 we've guided everyone ranging from US presidents, Australian Geographic and retired backpackers. Our goal is to create unique trips that take you off-the-beaten path, helping you discover China in a more authentic way. Our motto: "Discovery Your Way!"
Top of the World!
From our welcome at the airport with the traditional Tibetan scarves to our departure 3 days later, out time in Lhasa was nothing short of fabulous! Our guide, Tenzin was exceptionally energetic, knowledgeable and friendly. He made sure our time was spent experiencing the many wonderful sites as well as learning about the history and culture of this exciting place.Thank you to China Highlights and their local partners, in particular our fabulous guide Tenzin for organizing and executing a most wonderful trip! more
Itinerary Quick Look
Here is a suggested itinerary. We are happy to customize a tour according to your interests.
Your personal tour guide and driver will meet you at the airport and transfer you directly to your hotel to check-in and rest.
In the morning, you can explore the Gelug Tibetan Buddhist Ta'er Monastery to appreciate its splendid architecture and arts including murals, butter sculptures, and embroideries.
After lunch in a local restaurant, you will board the overnight train on the world's highest railway to Lhasa. The train leaves in the late afternoon, so there will be plenty of time to see the scenery before night falls.
The best scenery on the Qinghai-Tibet Railway is in the last 10 hours. You will cross the highest point — altitude 5,200 meters (17,000 feet) — around midday, but don't worry about altitude sickness as the train's interior had supplemental oxygen.
Arrival in Lhasa is in the late afternoon. Your personal Tibetan guide will be waiting for you, and will drive you directly to your hotel, where you can have a good rest and start to get used to the high altitude.
Ascend into the Potala Palace in the morning. Discover this architectural marvel and cultural treasure house. View the palace from four expertly-chosen angles to fully enjoy its beauty.
Enjoy a walking tour in the afternoon. Meet the devoted pilgrims prostrating themselves at Jokhang Temple. Delve into the less touristy corners of Barkhor Street to experience Tibetan daily life. Learn the history of Tibet at a Qing Dynasty ministerial office site and a wealthy merchant's residence — the Pandatsang Compound. Finally, sit down with local Tibetans in a nunnery to have a rest and enjoy a cup of Tibetan sweet tea.
Start the tour with Norbulingka ("Lhasa's Summer Palace"). Have a relaxing morning with the local Tibetans. Then visit Drepung Monastery — the biggest Tibetan Buddhist monastery. Learn more about the Gelug school of Tibetan Buddhism.
In the afternoon, you'll watch monks debating over age-old scriptures in a courtyard of Sera Monastery. Your personal guide will show you the thangka-like murals painted on big rocks on the ‘back hill', which are overlooked by most tourists.
Adventure out of Lhasa to holy Lake Yamdrok on the penultimate day. After viewing the lake from the popular platform, you will escape from the ordinary tourist route and drive along the lake to discover a small lamasery on a small island with only one monk. It is regarded as the loneliest lamasery in Tibet. Enjoy the exclusive view and tranquility of the lake. Have a picnic lunch on the bank of the lake if the weather is nice.
After breakfast, your private guide and driver will take you to the airport for your departure.
—the Icing on the Cake
Boutique hotels are recommended to enrich your travel experience.