Eastern Tibet is a homeland of great yogis. Gyalwa Karmapa, the King of Yogis of Tibet, the leader of Karma Kagyu school, has taken numerous rebirths there. There is a great number of remarkable places related to the history of Tibetan Buddhism. But this trip will be focused mostly on Karma Kagyu places.
Why is it so important to go there in autumn? Because it is the most beautiful time to be in the mountains, especially the high mountains of Tibet. Everything you have been dreaming about may come true exactly there. Dense forests of Eastern Tibet, especially of the historical region of Kham, are even more beautiful in autumn than central and western Tibet. Not to mention an incredible Sichuan province which you’ll be able to visit in October.
The students of Lama Ole Nydahl have set off twice to explore Eastern Tibet for the past 2 years. We didn’t need any permit there, so we were free to choose any direction we wanted. We managed to find all Karma Kagyu places (the birthplace of Karmapa I and Karmapa XVI, Kampo Nenang – the first monastery of Karmapa I). We also found the places related to the life of Emperor Songtsen Gampo’s first wife, Chinese Princess Wencheng, the places where great masters of the Rime movement fulfilled their activities (Jamgon Kontrul Lodro Thaye, Patrul Rinpoche, Mipham Rinpoche). The trip was a success for many reasons. First of all, good conditions came together. Also one of our friends Slava Ermolin spoke fluent Tibetan. You can read about our adventures in my blog on this website.
We finished our journey in one of the most interesting cities of China, Chengdu – the capital of Sichuan province.
This October Slava Ermolin and I are going to Kham again, and we want to take a dozen of friends with us. We are going to visit new and already discovered places in Eastern Tibet. Though this time we would like to explore places of Karmapa I activity in Sichuan and Kagyu places in Yunnan.
We are also open to any new connections, that is why if you don’t consider yourself a Buddhist, we also welcome you in our group!
You need to fly to Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan. There we will get on a shuttle bus to Tibetan city Gagze.
It’s possible to fly back from Chengdu or Kunming.
The travel program is ready now! We will start in Chengdu and finish in Lijiang.
Here are variants to get to Chengdu (click the links to see round-trip flights) from London, Frankfurt and Prague.
Our planned program looks like this:
30 Sept All participants arrive to Chengdu. It is better to take a morning flight and stay in Holly’s Hostel in the downtown in the Tibetan neibourhood.
1 Oct The whole day (16 hours) we go to Garze by bus.
2 Oct We visit the house of 1st Karmapa and the place where he spent his childhood. After lunch we departure to Yachen Gar, the biggest monastery in the world (10000 monks and nuns) where they practice meditations of Nyigmapa tradition.
3 Oct Moving from Yachen Gar to Litang, we visit the monastery that has the same name, one of the biggest in the county. In 195os Litang was one of the main centers of armed resistance of Tibetans against the Chinese occupation. Here a group of combatants “Chushi Gandruk” was fighting (four rivers, six ridges).
4 Oct We leave Litang and go to Genyeng massif. There, in the Nego valley, the 1st Karmapa Dusum Khyenpa founded his first monastery Kampo Nenang.
5 Oct We explore the Nego valley around Kampo Nenang monastery.
6 Oct We go back from Kampo Nenang to Litang.
7 Oct From Litang we go to the south to another monastery founded by 1st Karmapa, the Pangphug monastery . We move to the settlement of Daochen where trackings in Yading nature reserve begin. There we make kora around Chenrezig mountain.
8 Oct Through several mountain passes we go from Daocheng to the city of Shangri-La in the Yunnan province.
9 Oct Day in Shangri-La, we visit local “Potala Palace” the Samtseling monastery and a small pretty temple Rignga Lhakang founded by 10th Karmapa. In the evening we leave to the settlement of Dechen at the bottom of the Kawa Karpo massif .
10 Oct We explore the Kawa Karpo area – the center of Qualities of 1st Karmapa.
11 Oct From Dechen we go to Lijiang.
12 Oct Day in Lijiang, we visit two monasteries of the activity of 10th Karmapa, Fuguo Xi and Wenfeng. It is possible to use the night train from Lijiang to Kunming, the capital of Yunnan province.
13 Oct Flight from Lijiang to any destination that you need. You can google Lidzhang airport by typing LJG code.
It is possible to save up one day if in the evening of 30th Sep we go from Chengdu to Gardze by jeep not by bus. We will find out about the possibility oncw we are in Chengdu.
If we rent a bus for 8-10 people with a local guide (it depends on the guide’s schedule), the price is 1600$ for a group of 6 people, 1300$ for a group of 8 people.
The price is PER person. Renting a car for group in China is realy expensive.
If we rent a 4WD car (2 cars at least) 5 passengers in each one (cars usually cost more than a bus) without a local guide, the price is 1800$ for a group of 6 people, 1400$ for a group of 8 people, 1200$ for a group of 13 people.
The price includes only: transport, local guide service, Slava Ermolin and my participation.
Accomodation and food are not included! Transportation cost may change according to the final number of participants and the situation on the market. Please, consider these facts!
In order to be accepted in the group, the prepayment is required – 500$. The prepayment is not refundable no matter why you cancel the trip. The rest of the money you can pay in Chengdu.
China is not a typical tourist destination, that is why it is important to buy tickets in advance. The earlier you do that, the cheaper they are. The longer you wait, the more expensive they get. You buy plane tickets on your own using airlines websites and a credit card. We will help you to choose the right tickets.
Please, be aware that the group capacity is limited!
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