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Shangrila Adventure Pte. Ltd.
Copyright © 2021

Tour description

Cycle Tibet Nepal - Lhasa to Kathmandu

» Roof of the World - Friendship Highway

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14-18 Days



IMPT NOTE: This itinerary is currently replaced with the 10D Tibet Cycling To Mount Everest (due to border closures with Nepal) until further notice


A classic and most popular Tibet cycling/bike tour route,  Across the Himalayas!

Our style:  fully-supported & guided, we have repackaged this into a compact 10-14-day version (70% cycling and 30% on vehicle-bound as planned) expedition.

Everyone is guaranteed a seat on our passenger coach/bus 100% of the time.

SHANGRILA ADVENTURE created our very own 14-day program (shortened) to cater to the more average cyclists who wish to experience Tibet and the world greatest vertical descent in bicycles. Instead of 100% cycling, which would take about 18-25days to complete, we have carefully compressed the trip with 30% vehicle-bound. To add more comfort into this arduous journey, we always choose good quality accommodations available along the way. With our team of excellent service support staffs and vehicles, we ensure that our clients can complete this adventure successfully, safely and comfortably.Starting from Lhasa, you will visit popular spots such as Yamdrok Yumso Lake, Panchen Lama Tashilungpo Monastery and old ruins in Gyantse. The highlight of the expedition is definitely the Mount Everest Base Camp (EBC), from the north face (Tibet side). You will ride up to Rongbuk Monastery located at 5,150m and spend a night at Everest Base Camp. You will also get to experience the world’s longest vertical descend (2,800m), as you ride from Nyalam down to the Tibet-Nepal border of ZhangMu and Kodari.

We also run this trip in a 18-day version where it will be up to 70-80% cycling and 30-20% vehicle-bound.  Pls Contact us separately for this!

Other programs include: QingHai Lake cyclingQingHai Golmud to Tibet, & Tibet to YunNan Shangrila or SiChuan

» more photos



Potala Palace
Jokhang Monastery
Yamdro-tso Lake

Karo la glacier
Taishilunpo Monastery (Shigatse)
Palchoi Monastery & Old Fort ruins(Gyantse)
Rongbuk Monastery
Everest Base Camp


At a Glance:

No. of Days: 14 or 18

Difficulty: ***** (Very strenuous, if you cycle 100% as planned)

Start city: Lhasa, Tibet

End city: Kathmandu, Nepal

Altitude variations: 1300-5260m

Average (planned) cycling distance: 70-80km/day  (tarmac, mountainous)

Other highlights: Yamdro-tso Lake, Karo-la glacier, Tibetan culture along Friendship Highway, border-crossing to Nepal, Bhaktapur

Cost Inclusions: (Minimum for private group: 6pax)

01. All 13 nights accommodation (good & quality hotels & guesthouses)

02. 1 welcome dinner in Lhasa + ALL meals during cycling + 1 celebration dinner in Kathmandu

03. Airport transfers in Lhasa & Kathmandu

04. Logistics-support vehicles (passenger + safety vehicle as necessary to guarantee a seat for everyone. This is available 100% of the time)

05. Services of trip leader, guide, local support staffs & bike mechanic

06. Tibet Travel Permit & other necessary permits (Everest region) for foreigners

07: Entrance fees to Potala Palace, Yamdrok Yumtso Lake, Karo la glacier, Mount Everest Park fees, Bhaktapur UNESCO ancient town in Nepal

08. 24/27-speed GIANT mountain bike (model ATX750/770, with front shocks)

09. tables/chairs for picnic lunch during cycling

10. Medical Supplies: oxygen bags/bottles; basic 1st-aid kit

11. Supplies of bottled drinking water, fruits, dried-food & snacks

12. Cycling jersey per participant

13. Coordination meetings & Pre-departure briefing (preparation, gears, safety, admin etc.)

Detailed itinerary

DAY01 : Arrive Lhasa Tibet

Upon arrival to Lhasa, be greeted in Tibetan-style at the airport/train station by our tour leader & cycling guide & transfer about 1hr to your hotel in the city-centre.   As Lhasa is at 3650m, there will be no activity today as you have to rest & acclimatize to the altitude.  In the evening, gather for a trip opening briefing & welcome dinner.  (hotel)

DAY02 : Lhasa – leisure cycling around city

Breakfast at own free time in the hotel.  More rest & acclimatization  (option: Jokhang monastery in the morning).  After lunch, we will gather at the hotel to prepare your bikes for a very leisure cycling around the city.  The route will visit the Tibet train station, cycling alongside the Lhasa river, and also explore the lesser traveled back lanes of Lhasa behind Potala palace.   This is to help your body better acclimatize to the altitude & is also a good opportunity for minor adjustments to your bike.  (hotel)

DAY03 : Lhasa  – city tour & further acclimatisation

After breakfast in the hotel, our guide will meet you at the hotel for your visit to the Potala Palace, administrative office & residence of the DaLai lama.   In the afternoon, you will have your own free time to rest or explore the nearby Bhakor square & get your souvenirs before we depart Lhasa the next day.  (hotel)


DAY04 : Lhasa / Chusul / Nagartse (cycle 90km, vehicle 70km) Cycling starts today! Road Conditions: moderate, paved, dusty on certain stretch, cross Kampa La pass Highlights: Yamdrok Yumtso Lake. Overnight in Nagartse (hotel)

Flag-off for your 1000km cycling journey at Jokhang palace.  Cycle pass Potala palace.   Lunch will be at a local restaurant near to Chusul.   After lunch, we will give you an initial support you by driving up near to the Khampa-la highpass at 4780m.  After unloading from the vehicle, you will cycle up the highpass for a wonderful view of Yamdrok tso lake. For the rest of  today,  you will cycle alongside Yamdrok tso lake, passing several local villages all the way to Nagartze.  (guesthouse)


DAY05: Nagartse / Gyantse (cycle 60km, vehicle 40km

Highlights: Karo-La Glacier, Manak reservoir, Palchoi Monastery. Overnight in Gyantse (hotel)

After breakfast, drive towards your first 5000m highpass of the journey, Karo-la highpass (5039m).  You will start cycling before the highpass toward the Karo-la glacier.   Enjoy the view of the magnificent glacier right before your eye.  We will have picnic packed-lunch at a suitable location.    Continue to cycle pass Manak reservoir up to SiMiLa highpass 4350m, before descending down to Gyantse.  (hotel)

DAY06 : Gyantse / Shigatse (cycle 94km)

Road conditions: easy, paved, mostly flat Highlights: Tashilungpo Monastery. Overnight in Gyantse (hotel) In the morning, visit Palchoi monastery (optional) or have more time to rest.   We will transfer you by vehicle to the start point and cycle the flat-paved 90km road to Shigatse, passing many villages and farmlands.   We will stop for some snacks as you will arrive to Shigatse for late lunch at about 2-3pm.    Rest & relax in your hotel or visit Tashilungpo monastery, seat of the Panchen lama (optional).  (hotel)


DAY07 : Shigatse/ Lhatse (cycle km, vehicle km)

Road conditions: moderate, paved, relatively flat, some gentle slopes, high-pass at Tra La 4050m & Yulong La 4540m; difficult from Lhatse to Shegar, paved, uphill. Start cycling from your hotel, lunch at JiDing town.  After lunch, we will support you on the vehicle enroute to the next starting point. Enroute, stop for a picture at the 5000km road marker of the 318 ChuanZang road (measuring from Shanghai).   You will start somewhere before the highpass, and you will cycle all the way to Lhatse.  (hotel)


DAY08 : Lhatse / Shegar (new Tingri)

Today, you will cross the highest point of the entire journey. From Lhatse, we start cycling for about 8km before the road starts to climb about 30km all the way up to JiaCuo-la highpass 5260m.   Shegar is just a small town alongside the road.  (guesthouse)


DAY09 : Shegar / Tashi Zong Village/ Everest Base Camp (cycle 20km, drive 94km)

Road conditions: difficult, gravel dirt, mostly dusty, uphill Highlights: view of Himalayan Range & 5 8000m mountains Everest base camp, including a short hike to visit the mediation cave of Master Padmasambhava. Overnight in Everest Base Camp (tents, no shower)

After breakfast, start cycling 8km towards the Mount Everest park checkpoint post.   You will continue before turning off into the off-road section which is the last 102km to Mount Everest base camp.  From here, we will support you by vehicle up to the Pang-la highpass where you will have a full view of the Himalayas range, including Mount Everest, Cho Oyu & Shishapangma.

Just before Rongbuk monastery, you will disembark from the vehicle and cycle the rest of the journey into Mount Everest base camp.  Enjoy the magnificent sunset on the world’s highest mountain from your guesthouse.


DAY10 : Everest Base Camp / Nyalam (cycle 30km, drive 122km)

Road conditions: difficult, paved, undulating slopes. Clear one more Thang La Pass 5050m, & begin the longest descent! Highlights: Milaripa’s mediation cave. Overnight in Nyalam (hotel)

Wake up early to catch the golden tip of the first light on the highest point on earth! After breakfast, we will depart Everest base camp by vehicle. We will drive towards the start point, before the final 5000 highpass Thang-la 5050m. Start cycling until you cross this highpass.   Lunch at a local eating house about 2hrs from the pass.

After lunch, continue cycling to Nyalam.  This stretch is generally downhill as Nyalam is located at about 4340m.  There will be some sections of short uphill.  Headwind might be present which makes cycling difficult.

DAY11 : Nyalam / ZhangMu (cycle 42km) / Nepal Sun Kosi Valley (cycle 10km, drive 12km)

Road conditions: moderate, mostly paved, dirt gravel on certain stretches before ZhangMu, switchbacks along the valley down to the Nepal border.

After breakfast, we will start cycle a short section of uphill to the view point.  After this, it is all the way downslope to the border with Nepal at ZhangMu.  You will cruise down along the valley following the road.  Vegetation starts to turn green as you approach the Nepal border.

Do take extra precaution with the bends and look out for falling rocks.   There is a No. 707 bridge & you can spend some time to enjoy the beautiful scenery.  There is another final military checkpoint post before ZhangMu.   After clearing the immigration, you will walk across the friendship bridge into Nepal!

Our guide will greet you at the Nepal immigration.  We will drive you to a more spacious & safer location to start cycling towards your resort in Sun Kosi.   The rest of the afternoon is free & easy for you to relax in this nice cosy resort.  (resort hotel)


DAY12 : Sun Kosi Valley / Dhulikhel / Bhaktapur (cycle 60km, drive 30km) 

Road Conditions: difficult, paved, upslope.

Today is the last day of cycling in this trip.  After breakfast, start cycling from the resort towards Bhaktapur.  There is a section of steep uphill climb, before you descend down to the river & bridge for your lunch at a local restaurant.

After lunch, continue cycling the last uphill climb for about 20km of your entire cycling tour.  After you reach the y-junction near Djulikhel, we will drive you to the quieter back roads of Bhaktapur, before you disembark to cycle the final stretch into the durbar square of this ancient town.

Tonight, we will have a celebration dinner for completing this awesome journey on the friendship highway across the Himalayas!  (hotel)

DAY13 : Bhaktapur / Kathmandu – Rest and Relax (drive 18km) 

After breakfast, we will drive about 40min to your hotel located in Thamel Kathmandu.  Lunch at on your own & the rest of the day is free & easy.   (optional: monkey temple etc)


DAY14 : Depart Kathmandu 

After breakfast, send-off to the airport for your departure.   Bon voyage!


* note: the above are as plan, changes on the ground according to situations & cyclists fitness & proficiency levels



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