Tibet Mountain Bike Tour is the most popular and adventurous journey on a bike through Tibet and Nepal. This is a different and adventurous way of touring to Tibet.
This epic 1100km journey takes you through six high passes over 5000 meters. On this tour, you will travel on a mountain bike to explore the prominent places of Tibet like Lhasa, Shigatse, Tingri, and so on.
You get to experience the world’s longest and deepest bike descent from the heart of Tibet to Kathmandu. You get glimpses of the rich and antique culture of Tibet and Nepal.
Outline Itinerary of Tibet Mountain Bike Tour
Day01: Arrive in Kathmandu and straight drive in private car or tourist bus from Kathmandu to Lhasa.
Day02: Sightseeing day and Bazaar Visit in Lhasa.
Day03: Visit Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery in Tibet.
Day04: Start of bike journey from Lhasa to Khampa-la Pass.
Day05: Cycling from Khampa-la Pass to Nagartse.
Day06: Cycling from Nagartse to Simi-la Pass
Day07: Cycling from Simi-la Pass to Gyantse.
Day08: Cycling from Gyantse to Shigatse.
Day09: Rest Day in Shigatse.
Day10: Cycling from Shigatse to Tso-la Pass.
Day11: Cycling from Tso-la Pass to Gyamtso-la Pass.
Day12: Cycling from Gyamtso-la Pass to Shegar.
Day13: Cycling from Shegar to Choesang.
Day14: Cycling from Choesang to Rongbuk.
Day15: Exploration or Rest Day in Rongbuk
Day16: Cycling from Rongbuk to Tingri.
Day17: Cycling from Tingri to Lalung-la Pass.
Day18: Cycling from Lalung-la Pass to Nyalam.
Day19: Cycling from Nyalam to Bote Koshi River.
Day20: Cycling on the road along the river banks from Bote Koshi River-Kathmandu.
Day21: Drop to airport for your international departure.
Detailed Itinerary of Tibet Mountain Bike Tour
Day 01: Arrive in Kathmandu and Drive from Kathmandu to Lhasa.
On arrival at the Kathmandu airport, you will transfer to the tour vehicle. From Kathmandu, you drive to Lhasa, Tibet on the same day. Overnight at Lhasa, Tibet.
Day 02: Sightseeing Day and Bazaar Visit in Lhasa
Today is a sightseeing day in Lhasa. Some places to visit here are:
- Potala Palace: Built in 641, it has more than 1000 rooms. Once the winter home of H.H. The Dalai Lama, it is now more a museum.
- Jokhang Temple: It is the spiritual center for Tibetan Buddhists.
- Norbulingka: This was once the summer palace of the Dalai Lama.
After the sightseeing tour, you will explore Barkhor Square. This square is the spiritual heart of Tibet and has a lively, local market here. Overnight in Lhasa
Day 03: Visit Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery in Tibet.
Today, you will visit two of the most ancient, important and biggest monasteries in Tibet.
- Sera Monastery: It is one of Tibet’s great 3 university monasteries. Built in 1419, it is a remarkable landmark. On this day, sleeping altitude will be at 3,514m.
- Drepung Monastery: Once the biggest monastery in the world, it was the home of around 10000 monks. Built in the 14th century, it still houses a few hundred monks. This monastery is deeply rooted in the Tibetan religion and culture.
Day 04: Start of Bike Journey from Lhasa to Khampa-La Pass
Distance: 84 km
After the 2 beautiful days in Lhasa for acclimatization and sightseeing, you begin your mountain bike ride on this day.
You begin by riding your bikes or cycles out to the Drepung Monastery on the outskirts of Lhasa. Hereon, the Freedom Highway leads you away from Lhasa down the Lhasa Valley. From here, you cycle pass Chusal and move on to Khamba La.
Day 05: Cycling from Khampa-la Pass to Nagartse
Distance: 73.5 km
You begin by cycling over the tough, 23 km climb over the Khampa La Pass at 4794m. From here, you get a view of fluttering prayer flag and the turquoise Yamdrok Lake.
You will then descend towards the Lake for lunch. Yamdrok Lake is a sacred lake to the Buddhists. From here, you cycle into camp along flat but tough terrain of Nagartse.
Day 06: Cycling from Nagartse to Simi-la Pass
Distance: 52.1 km
Today, you tackle the first and lowest of the high passes, the Karol La Pass at 5045m. You will get a view of the imposing glacier.
After the descent, you begin a gentle climb of 15 km to the top of Simi La Pass.
Overnight at Simi La Pass.
Day 07: Cycling from Simi-la Pass to Gyantse.
Distance: 35 km
After crossing the pass, you make your way to Gyantse in the heart of the Yang Chug Valley. You will pass places like the Palcho Monastery and the magnificent Kumbum Stupa.
You will also see Gyantse Dzong – where Lt. Col Francis Younghusband made his infamous first stronghold in 1904.
Day 08: Cycling from Gyantse to Shigatse
Distance: 94 km
You can start your day with a visit to Palkhor Monastery and the old town of Gyantse.
After this, you start your ride for the day. Today is a comfortable ride across beautiful plains with a dramatic mountain backdrop. You follow different bends along the Nyang Chu river to reach the plains into Shigatse. Shigatse is Tibet’s second largest city and home to the controversial Panchen Lama.
Overnight at Shigatse.
Day 09: Rest Day in Shigatse
Today is a rest or exploration day. There are beautiful places to visit and explore in the 2nd biggest city of Shigatse. Some of them are:
- Tashilhunpo monastery complex: Once the seat of Panchen Lama.
- Summer Palace of Panchen Lama
- Shigatse Dzong
- Mani Lhakang
- Shigatse Tibetan Market
You can also relax and watch the local life in one of the many restaurants and cafes in the city.
Day 10: Cycling from Shigatse to Tso-la Pass
You start with a gentle ride through the rolling terrain across the Shigatse Plains. From here, you take a gradual but long climb to Tra La Pass (4050m). You pass through several small Tibetan villages. You will stay overnight near the base of Tso-La Pass.
Overnight at Tso La Pass.
Day 11: Cycling from Tso-la Pass to Gyamtso-La Pass.
Distance: 64.5 km
You begin with a steady 8km climb to the summit of Tso La pass (4,580m). From here, you descent for over 29km into Lhatse. Before reaching the town, you can take a dip in the hot springs located near here.
Lhatse is reminiscent of a Wild West frontier town. Leaving Lhatse, you cycle towards the Chusar Chu valley. You stay overnight along the riverside.
Day 12: Cycling from Gyamtso-la Pass to Shegar.
Distance: 65.7 km
We climb to the summit of Gyatso La Pass, 5248m. This is the highest pass on the Friendship Highway. From here, you get a looming sight of Everest.
From here, you drop down 10km through small villages and past Stupas down to the Lolo River.
Overnight at Shegar
Day 13: Cycling from Shegar to Choesang
Distance: 60 km
You begin with a ride through smooth tarmac and then you head off-road. There is another pass in this section of the Pang La Pass at 5200m. You can do this pass or skip it.
The ride today has magnificent mountain views throughout. From here, you make your way to Choesang.
Day 14: Cycling from Choesang to Rongbuk.
From Choesang, you go downhill to Rongbuk Valley (4200m) for 20km.
From here, a bumpy road takes you to the Rongbuk Camp beside the monastery.
Here you get unforgettable views of Mt. Everest.
Overnight at Rongbuk
Day 15: Exploration or Rest Day in Rongbuk
You can either rest or explore the fabulous region of Rongbuk.
You can take a ride on your bike, yak or walk to Everest Base Camp. You head up the gravel jeep trail to Everest Base Camp. The route is only 4km. Yet it can take longer with the stunning views and thin air. You get a 360-degree panorama of the high Himalayas from here. After enjoying in the Base Camp, you can return to Rongbuk.
Else you can pay a visit to Rongbuk Monastery.
Overnight at Rongbuk
Day 16: Cycling from Rongbuk to Tingri.
You retrace your way down to the valley from the previous day. You continue your bike ride through the off-road smooth mountain tracks. There are some very rocky rough sections that will provide a challenge. From here, you pass the Lama La Pass, at 5101m. Then you descend on a mixture of rough sections of road, mixed with free-flowing dirt tracks and stream crossings. After this, you rejoin the Friendship Highway and make your way into the barren plains of Tingri.
Day 17: Cycling from Tingri to Lalung-La Pass
Distance: 62 km
You will cycle on the flat road and have a smooth ride for the most part of today. You will pass through many monasteries, fortresses, and clear mountain rivers.
Day 18: Cycling from Lalung-la Pass to Nyalam.
Distance: 51 km
You begin with a gradual incline of the Lalung La Pass (4990m). From here, you get views of various mountain peaks including Shishapangma (8012m).
From here you ride down and make your way up to Shung La (5200m), the last pass in Tibet.
After enjoying the view, you make an epic descent by thundering down to Nyalam.
Overnight and last night in Tibet.
Day 19: Cycling from Nyalam to Bhote Koshi River.
Distance: 40 km
You continue cycling on the Friendship Highway making your way to Zangmo. From here, you get off your bike, clear the customs of the border point and make your way to Nepal.
You continue your bike ride by making a descent towards the Bhote Koshi river.
Overnight at Bhote Koshi River
Day 20: Cycling on the Road Along the River Banks from Bhote Koshi River-Kathmandu.
You continue your mountain bike ride along the Bhote Koshi river. This river is famous for kayaking, rafting and bungee jumping.
You continue your ride through bumpy roads and join the Arniko Highway towards Kathmandu, the capital city of Nepal.
Overnight at Kathmandu
Day 21: Drop to Airport for Your International Departure.
The tour representative will drop you to the airport 3 hours before your flight.
Cost of Tibet Mountain Bike Tour
This 21 days bike tour can cost anywhere between US$ 2500-3200 per person.
The range is due to the inclusion of the following costs:
- Visa and Permit
- Entrance Fees
- Meals (breakfast, lunch, and dinner)
- Tour Guide
- Camping Equipment
- Transportation to and from Tibet and Nepal
Best Time for Tibet Mountain Bike Tour
April-May and September-October are the best months for the mountain bike tour. You can enjoy your cycling in dry, warm weather. The temperatures also do not drop too low. So, you can enjoy your tour in moderate weather with clear views of the scenery, landscapes and the road ahead.
From mid-February to March, Tibet closes off to foreign visitors. Hence, you cannot tour the country by any means.
November- January is winter season in Tibet. There may be light to heavy snowfall in the different parts of Tibet. The roads can get slippery and wet with snow. The temperatures go below freezing which can be brutal for your health and safety. Yet with the right gears and supplies, it can be an adventure of a lifetime along with the thrills of winter tour.
June-August is the summer season in Tibet. This season is also not ideal for a mountain bike tour. Tibet experiences a wet summer. You can experience rainfall along with wet, slippery and cold weather conditions. These are not an ideal situation for your mountain bike journey. Even the sceneries and landscapes around you can get blocked with cloud and fog during these months.
This Mountain Biking Tibet tour is for the two-wheeled travelers. This classic mountain bike tour is a supported and guided mountain biking tour through Tibet and Nepal.
Full of amazing sceneries and cultural experience, it is a great way to tour Tibet. It is the only biking trip in the world where you can visit Everest Base Camp on a bicycle.
For any further queries or questions about the Lhasa Bike tour, feel free to contact us. You can also contact us to create custom Bike tours to Tibet.