13-Day Fantastic Monlam Festival, Beijing, Xi’an, Lanzhou, and Shanghai Tour

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from/per person $1,998.00USD

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Monlam Festival
13-Day Fantastic Monlam Festival, Beijing, Xi’an, Lanzhou, and Shanghai Tour Highlights

  • An incredible chance to experience the great event of Tibetans in the South of Gansu Province: the Monlam Festival. The first Monlam Festival was held in 1409 by Tsong Khapa, the founder of Gelug School (Gelugpa), to worship Buddha Sakyamuni. Since then, it has become a common festival for all Tibetan monasteries. During the festival, monks gather for chanting prayers and performing religious rituals and a huge Buddha scroll painting (thangka) is unfolded for all to see. It is a very rare sight that is definitely a must-see event.
  • Take a hiking trip on the remote and wild Gubeikou Great Wall, rugged enough for a good hike and away from the crowds;
  • Cover Beijing (the capital of China),  Xian (an important historical city and ancient capital for 13 dynasties of China), and Shanghai (China’s emerging global financial hub).
  • Taste China’s delicious local food including the iconic Peking Roast Duck, and other exquisite delicacies from China’s culinary culture;
  • Discover China’s modern-day engineering miracles by hopping on China’s super fast bullet train and traveling for more than 1200km from Beijing to Xi’an in less than 5 hours. Experience personally how fast, modern, and comfortable the Chinese bullet trains are!

Price Per Person

Departure Date2 pax3~5 pax6~9 paxSSP
Feb. 23 2990 USD 2588 USD1998 USD  525 USD

Services Included:

  • Entrance fees to tourist attractions as specified in the itinerary.
  • Domestic flight from Beijing to Lanzhou including taxes.
  • Super high-speed trains from Lanzhou to Xi’an, and Xi’an to Shanghai, based on second-class seats.
  • Meals as listed in the itinerary.
  • Experienced local English-speaking guide in each city.
  • Private vehicle and Chinese speaking driver for transfers.
  • Service Charges & Government Taxes.

Services Not Included:

  • International transportation to Beijing and out of Shanghai
  • China visa
  • Personal expenses such as excess luggage charge (please verify your flight documentation), beverages, laundry services, etc.
  • Tips or gratuities to local driver and guide.

Book Now!

Interested in booking this tour or customizing it to fit your needs? Fill out this quick form!


100% privacy -- we will never spam you.

BOOK BY PHONE:

1-888-373-6882

  • Groups allowed
  • Tour guides

Tour Schedule by Day


Day 1 Arrive in Beijing

Meals: N/A

Accommodation: Holiday Inn Express Beijing Temple of Heaven image ofe 3 star rating or similar

When your flight arrives at Beijing Capital International Airport, your local guide will be waiting for you. On the way to your hotel, your guide will give you a brief introduction of Beijing, an age-old city which is the capital of China. The rest of the day will be yours to wander about on your own to get the first impressions of the city.

beijing

Day 2 Beijing

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Peking Roast Duck Dinner

Accommodation: Holiday Inn Express Beijing Temple of Heaven image ofe 3 star rating or similar

Your adventure in Beijing starts from Tiananmen Square and the Forbidden City. Tiananmen Square is the center of the city, where the Chinese national flag is raised every morning at the same time as the sunrise. The square is surrounded by many important buildings, for example, the memorial hall of Chairman Mao Zedong, one of the founders of the People’s Republic of China. You may visit the memorial hall if you are interested. It is free admission. Sightseeing inside the Forbidden City includes the front halls, the imperial garden, and some of the most beautiful imperial treasure collections.

In the afternoon, you will explore another landmark of Beijing, the Temple of Heaven, where Qing emperors used to hold sacrificing ceremonies and pray for social stability and good harvest.

At night, enjoy Beijing Roast Duck in Quanjude, a time-honored restaurant famous for the specialty. Then be transferred to your hotel.

beijing forbidden city

Day 3 Beijing

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch 

Accommodation: Holiday Inn Express Beijing Temple of Heaven image ofe 3 star rating or similar

Travel to the suburb of Beijing to visit the magnificent Great Wall of China. You will explore the Gubeikou Section of the Great Wall, which has fewer crowds and is more remote wild and rugged enough for a good hike. It is about 2.5 hours drive away from Beijing and it is about 3-4 hours of hiking. We will provide water, snacks and trekking poles. Please prepare a day pack to carry these and wear comfortable shoes. After the trip, we will drive back to your hotel.

beijing gubeikou great wall

Day 4 Beijing/Lanzhou by plane

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: Legend Hotel Lanzhou 4stars or similar

Enjoy free time at the hotel to rest until being driven to the airport for the flight to Lanzhou. When you arrive in Lanzhou, you will be transferred to your hotel.

lanzhou

Day 5 Lanzhou/Linxia/Xiahe

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Accommodation: Labrang Civil Aviation Hotel 4stars or similar

Drive to Linxia Hui Autonomous Region. It is about a 2.5-hour drive. A large number of Hui people live in Linxia. Thus, there are mosques in almost every corner of the city. Constantly, pilgrims come to the Grand Gongbei (Great Mausoleum) as the holy land for their faith. Hence, some people call this place the “Mecca of China”. You will visit the largest Grand Gongbei (Great Mausoleum), built in 1720 around the sacred tomb of Qi Jingyi (1656-1719), the founder of the Qadiriyya Sufi Order (North Menhuan) in China.

After that, continue to drive to Xiahe County. It is about a 2-hours drive. The main inhabitants in Xiahe are the Tibetans.

gansu linxia Grand Gongbei

Day 6 Xiahe

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Accommodation: Labrang Civil Aviation Hotel 4stars or similar

Today a thrilling event, the Monlam Festival in Labrang Monastery is waiting for you. The first Monlam Festival was held in 1409 by Tsong Khapa, the founder of Gelug School (Gelugpa), to worship Buddha Sakyamuni. Since then, it has become a common festival for all Tibetan monasteries. During the festival, monks gather for chanting prayers and performing religious rituals and a huge Buddha scroll painting (thangka) is unfolded for all to see. It is a very rare sight that is a must-see destination. In order to take a good position to photograph this event, you need to get up early today.

After the event, explore the Labrang Monastery, which is one of the six great monasteries of the Gelug School (Gelugpa) of Tibetan Buddhism. Founded in 1709, the monastery contains 18 halls, six institutes of learning, a gilded stupa, a sutra debate area, and houses nearly 60,000 sutras. Thousands of monks live there and train for years. Drive to the hotel after the tour.

xiahe labrang monastery monlam festival

Day 7 Xiahe

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Accommodation: Labrang Civil Aviation Hotel 4stars or similar

In the morning, you will watch monks wearing masks and traditional costumes performing a lively cham dance at Labrang Square. Cham dance is considered a form of meditation and an offering to the gods.

In the afternoon, travel to Ganjia Grassland and the ruins of a once important military post, Bajiaocheng. The grassland is not as lush in winter, but it is still beautiful and you can see flocks of sheep. You will also visit a Tibetan family today.

xiahe labrang monastery monlam festival

Day 8 Xi'an

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner

Accommodation: Labrang Civil Aviation Hotel 4stars or similar

Enjoy free time to walk around the town during the daytime. At night, you will enjoy the Butter Lamp Festival, which is a part of the Monlam Festival. It falls on the fifteenth day of the first month in the Tibetan calendar during the full moon. Monks will spend weeks making butter lamps, in the shapes of gods, flowers, trees, and birds. The lanterns are lit at night and the Tibetans sing and dance to celebrate the festival.

xiahe labrang monastery monlam festival

Day 9 Xiahe/Lanzhou/Xi'an by bullet train

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Accommodation: Grand Noble Hotel Xi'an 4stars or similar

Drive to Lanzhou Railway Station and you will take a super high-speed train to Xi'an. When you arrive in Xi'an, you will be transferred to the hotel.

xian city wall

Day 10 Xi'an

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Accommodation: Grand Noble Hotel Xi'an 4stars or similar

In the morning, you will visit the world-famous Terracotta Warriors. These life-sized soldiers and horses in the Terracotta Warriors Museum are one of the most significant archaeological excavations in the 20th century. They are a form of funerary art buried with the First Emperor of Qin in 210-209 BC, who declared himself the first emperor of China. Their purpose is to help the emperor rule the empire in the afterlife.

Then return to downtown Xian. You will visit the Old City Wall which is one of the best preserved in China. Next, enjoy a leisurely walk along the Muslim Street. It is a famous food street, where many local cuisines and cuisines of the Hui Minority are available to sample. Local cuisines are often spicy.
terracotta warriors xian

Day 11 Xi'an/Shanghai by bullet train

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Accommodation: Holiday Inn Hotel Shanghai Zhabei image ofe 3 star rating or similar

In the morning, you will pay a visit to Shaanxi History Museum (not available on Mondays) which holds a collection of over 370,000 precious relics including bronze wares, pottery figures, and mural paintings excavated from the Tang Dynasty's tombs. Have lunch in a local restaurant.

After lunch, you will be driven to the railway station and take a super high-speed train to Shanghai. When you arrive in Shanghai, you will be transferred to the hotel.

terracotta warriors xian

Day 12 Shanghai

Meals: Breakfast, Lunch

Accommodation: Holiday Inn Hotel Shanghai Zhabei image ofe 3 star rating or similar

Today, you will explore the Shanghai Museum (not available on Mondays). As the biggest and also one of the best museums in China, Shanghai Museum displays a large collection of bronzes, sculptures, ceramics and porcelain, paintings, calligraphy, seals, jade, coins, furniture and ethnic artifacts from minority groups, etc.

Then walk along the famous Nanjing Road which is the most popular pedestrian street in Shanghai. After that, you will visit the Bund, the landmark of Shanghai, which is lined with dozens of historical buildings.

Finally, you will travel to the Yuyuan Garden, which is a Chinese classic garden. Its architecture features exquisite rock and wooden carvings, rockery, and ponds.

小图4

Day 13 Depart from Shanghai

Meals: Breakfast

Accommodation: N/A

Enjoy free time until being driven to the airport for your departing flight. Thus, the end of this fabulous tour of China.

shanghai bund