Lhasa to Kathmandu Mountain Bike Traverse
Tibet & Nepal, Bike - Semi Slick, 22 days - from £2,695 (land only) - from €3,370 (land only) - from $4,720 (land only)
Day 1: Rendezvous at the group hotel in Kathmandu. Airport transfers are provided. KE Land Only package services begin with the evening meal.
Day 2: A free day in Kathmandu. Optional guided sightseeing tour of the city's main attractions, which include colourful Buddhist shrines and Hindu temples. We spend a second night at our Kathmandu hotel.
Day 3: We return to Kathmandu Airport and take the spectacular flight to Lhasa, which takes us over the Himalaya and Mount Everest. We meet our Tibetan hosts and transfer to the group hotel in Lhasa.
Day 4: An acclimatisation and sightseeing day in Lhasa, to include a leisurely exploration of the 7th Century Jokhang Temple and a visit to the magnificent Potala Palace.
Day 5: An easy ride out to the Sera Monastery is the perfect way to aid the acclimatisation process. Returning to our hotel, the afternoon can be spent souvenir shopping or relaxing in a cafe in the Barkor.
Day 6: Starting out on our epic ride, we ride the relatively level and straightforward stage on newly-laid tarmac, to the bottom of the Khamba La. We set up our first camp at the foot of the pass. Ride distance 85 km (53 miles).
Day 7: Today we cross the first of 6 major passes, the Khamba La (4794m). At this stage of the holiday, the 1000 metres ascent is a real challenge. Great views of Yamdrok Lake, before dropping down to a lovely campsite before the village of Nakartse. Ride distance 75 km (47 miles).
Day 8: Next up is the Karo La (5050m) with glaciers descending to the roadside. Descending from the pass, through a wonderful valley and by way of a series of villages, we camp beneath the Simi La. Ride distance 68 km (43 miles).
Day 9: After an easy-angled climb to the Simi La, we enjoy a mostly downhill stage to Gyantse. Here, we check in at our hotel and have the afternoon free to explore the temple complex of the Kumbum. Ride distance 50 km (31 miles).
Day 10: We have a flat and fast morning's ride to Shigatse, where we check in at our hotel and have the afternoon free to explore the amazing Tashilhunpo Monastery and the local market. Ride distance 95 km (59 miles).
Day 11: We spend a rest day at Shigatse, which gives us time to explore the fantastic Tashilhunpo Monastery. We spend a second night at our Shigatse hotel.
Day 12: A gradual climb today, as we approach the distant Tso La. A late lunch is taken at a pleasant site besides the Ra Chu River and we set up camp at 4290 metres before the pass. Ride distance 106 km (66 miles).
Day 13: Today, we climb to the top of the Tso La (4500m) for spectacular views of the main Himalaya Range. Onwards to Lhatse and then a steady climb to a camp before the Gyamtso La. Ride distance 85 km (53 miles).
Day 14: Another tough climb to the high point of our route at the Gyamtso La (5220m). We get our first views of Everest, as we descend to Shegar and turn south to camp beyond Chay Village. Ride distance 82 km (51 miles).
Day 15: Heading now towards Everest, we make the tough ascent to the Pang La (5150m) where the views of the Himalaya, including Mount Everest, are simply outstanding. We then have a great dirt road descent to our camp near Choesang. Ride distance 59 km (37 miles).
Day 16: We have a relatively steady morning's ride to the Rongbuk Monastery where we set up our highest camp of the holiday (5000m) with stunning views of Everest. After lunch there is the option to make the return ride up to Everest Basecamp. Ride distance without the basecamp ride 24 km (15 miles).
Day 17: We have an early start for those wanting to ride the whole of the route back to the main road via the Lamma La. Finally reaching the Friendhip Highway, we bike through Tingri to our camp beside the Tsamda hot springs. Ride distance 90 km (56 miles).
Day 18: Great views of Everest and Cho Oyu as we bike across the plateau to our idyllic camp, with green grass and a crystal clear stream, below the Lalung La. Ride distance 55 km (34 miles).
Day 19: Two more high passes to cross today, including the Thang La (5132m), with great views of Shishapangma. Then we commence our mega-descent towards Nepal, stopping off just beyond Nyalam, where we camp. Ride distance 87 km (54 miles).
Day 20: Today is a massive and seemingly endless descent on switchbacks, crossing into Nepal at Zangmu and then ever downwards to the Borderlands Resort beside the Bhote Khosi River. Ride distance 58 km (36 miles).
Day 21: A bit more downhill, then a final, long drag up to Dhulikhel on the rim of the Kathmandu Valley. At least there is no shortage of oxygen down here! After a final short descent to our hotel in Kathmandu, the celebrations at the end of an epic ride can begin. Ride distance 110 km (68 miles).
Day 22: KE Land Only package services end after breakfast. Kathmandu Airport transfers are provided.
This holiday involves going to very high altitude. During the course of your trip you will be spending at least one night above 4000 metres and/or trekking to 5000 metres or above. This is not something that you should worry about; the human body is quite capable of adapting to a very wide range of altitudes, but it is important that we follow some simple rules in order to acclimatise successfully. Before coming on this holiday you should read the advice on trekking at high altitude.
GPS Trip Data
Click on the link below to view the detailed stats for this holiday via Garmin Connect. Tracked using a Garmin etrex20 you can see detailed mapping of the route, daily distances travelled, the total ascent and descent each day and maximum altitude.