You are here: HomeNepal Tibet ToursHow to Travel from Tibet to NepalGet from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash
Transfer from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash Transfer from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash

How to Get from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash

Mount Kailash, located in Ngari, is one of the most famous sites for Buddhist Kora (Yatra) and the center of the world honored in Tibetan Buddhism, Hinduism, Bon and Jainism. Apart from the devoted pilgrims, many tourists are also attracted by the mystery of Mount Kailash and picturesque wild nature of Ngari. Kathmandu, the only international gateway city to Tibet, is also a top destination for Buddhist pilgrims and travelers. A tour from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash will be meaningful and memorable. There are several means to get to Mount Kailash from Kathmandu.

Overland Driving from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash

Since Gyirong Port was open to foreigner travelers in August 30th, 2017, overland driving from Nepal to Tibet becomes available again. The view of Himalayan ranges along the road is one of the most highlighted parts in the journey. Overland driving from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash gives more visual enjoyment. The whole journey takes about 2~3 days, and we suggest that you spend 3 days on journey to travel more leisurely.

Kathmandu to Gyirong Town

Gyrong Port is about 160km away from Kathmandu. Before crossing the border, you need to drive about 6~8 hours. The road is not in good condition, winding and a little bumpy. The driver has to control the driving speed for security and you need to queue up if the traffic jam occurs. Don’t disturbed by the long time, and just feast your eyes on the fascinating scenery. Foreign travelers have to book a travel agency in Tibet and travel with a guide. After passing through the custom, you will meet your local guide and driver. Then drive another 25km to Gyirong Town and accommodate there.

Girong Town to Sagar County

On the second day, you drive about 4.5 hours (170km) to Sagar County from Gyirong Town. It is a rather short trip but scenery is good as well. It is also available drive further to Zhongba and Paryang, but the accommodation in Sagar County is better.

Sagar County to Mount Kailash

Another long journey begins on the third day. You will drive along freshly-paved bituminous road to the legendary Ngari, and fully appreciate the one hundred percent natural beauty – holy mountains, sacred lakes, vast parries and harsh desert. There are also many rare animals running around, like Mongolian gazelle, wild donkeys, Tibetan antelope etc. If the weather is good, you can see Mount Kailash in distance. After about 8~9 hours’ sightseeing trip, you will get to the final destination of this day, Darchen, the starting as well as the ending place of Mount Kailash Yatra or trekking route. Darchen is equipped with many small hotels and stores. Remember to buy some food for your next days’ trekking or Kora. 

Gyirong Town
Amazing View of Gyirong Town
Gyirong Town
The Road from Sagar to Ngari

Take a Flight from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash via Lhasa

Undoubtedly, flight is the most time-saving and comfortable transportation. With the operation of Ngair Gunsa Airport, Mount Kailash can be reached much more conveniently. Since there is no nonstop flight connecting Kathmandu and Ngari directly, you need to take a flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa firstly. After 3 days’ Lhasa city tour (top recommended), it is available to get to Mount Kailash by flight or driving.

Kathmandu Lhasa Flight

There are 1~2 daily flights from Kathmandu Tribhuvan International Airport to Lhasa Gonggar Airport. One is CA408 operated by Airchina, departing from Kathmandu to Lhasa every day. The other flight 3U8740, operated by Sichuan Airlines is only available on Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. They can take you from Kathmandu to Lhasa as short as 1.5 hours. The flights might be cut down or cancelled in the off seasons. Check the following detailed Kathmandu-Lhasa flights table:

Flight Sightseeing
Sightseeing from the Window of Plane
Flight No.Departure -- ArrivalDurationFrequencyPlaneTicket
Tribhuvan Airport

Gonggar Airport
1h 35m  - - T - T - S Airbus A319
4410 ¥
Economy Class
Tribhuvan Airport

Gonggar Airport
1h 25m SM - W - F - Airbus A319
5230 ¥
Economy Class

Important Notice: 1) The departure time and arrival time are on local time and the time difference between Nepal and China is 2 hours and 15 minutes; 2) above flights schedules are only for reference, and please contact us to catch up on the latest information; 3) Air China canceled the Kathmandu Lhasa flights on Tuesday till 10th October, 2017.

Lhasa Ngari Flight

The linear distance between Lhasa and Ngari is about 1,250km (777 miles), and a daily flight TV9807 can take you to Ngari from Lhasa within 2 hours. It departs at 07:00 from Lhasa Gonggar Airport and lands at 09:00 in Ngari Gunsa Airport. Don’t forget to choose the seat by the window so you can have a good view of the outside while taking off and landing. Check the following detailed Lhasa-Ngari flight:

Flight No.Departure -- ArrivalDurationFrequencyPlaneTicket
Gonggar Airport

Gunsa Airport
2hr SMTWTFS Airbus A319
2640 ¥
Economy Class

Lhasa Ngari Driving

Taking a flight is efficient, but Lhasa Ngari driving allows you to acclimatize the growing altitude gradually. This driving from Lhasa to Ngari takes three days, with two nights in Shigtase and Saga. During the whole journey, you will experience the various unique features of Tibet, like nature, culture, history, Buddhism, architecture etc. On the road to Shigatse, you will climb to summit of Kambala (5,030) from which the panoramic view of Yamdrok Lake is breathtaking. Go ahead with the winding road on the hill, this holy lake will be close enough to touch. Before long, the towering aloft Karola Glacier will give a shock. As you get to Gyantse, the idyllic scenery is alluring. Moreover, the monasteries is also worthy of you appreciation. The road connecting Shigatse and Sagar is national highway in well condition, and with too many to see as well.

Gyirong Town
Beautiful Gyantse

Must Documents for Kathmandu Kailash Tour

Tibet Group Visa from Nepal

Unlike Chinese Visa, Tibet Group Visa from Nepal can only be obtained from Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu by travel agency on behalf of travelers, instead of being applied from the Chinese Embassy in your own country by yourselves. But it is a special Chinese Visa and you can use it to extend your Tibet tour to mainland China. It usually takes 3 working days to obtain the Group Visa, and your original passport will be required for the process. As you get your Group Visa – a paper sheet with information of your group members and validity (no more than 30 days), your applied Chinese Visa becomes invalid. The Group Visa will be checked when you board a Kathmandu Lhasa flight or cross the Nepal-Tibet border. See more at Tibet Group Visa from Nepal>

Tibet Entry Permit

Only issue by Tibet Tourism Bureau and applied by travel agencies, Tibet Entry Permit is the official document which permits a foreign travel to enter and travel in Tibet. It must be the most important document for a Tibet Tour. Without it, you are unable to get to Tibet by flight, driving, train or any other transportation means. What’s more, it is also a premise to get a Tibet Group Visa. Before getting a Tibet Entry Permit, you need to work out an itinerary, because the gateway city will be printed in the permit. See more at Tibet Entry Permit>

Tibet Border Pass

Traveling from Kathmandu to Mount Kailash, you need cross the border between Nepal and Tibet, so Tibet Border Pass is necessary. Just like Tibet Entry Permit, it is only issued by Tibet Armed Police Border Corps and can’t be applied by traveler individually. Tibet Entry Permit is also needed when you apply a Tibet Border Pass. If you take a flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa, the scanned copy of the Tibet Border Pass is also available for boarding the flight. See more at Tibet Border Pass>

Tibet Military Permit

Visiting some unopened areas, Tibet Entry Permit is not enough. Military Permit is another necessary permit if you visit some military sensitive places, including Ngari (Mount Kailash, Lake Manasarovar, Guge Relics Site etc.). Due to a long procedure to get approved, you should provide your scanning copy of valid passport and visa 20 days before leaving for Ngari. See more at Tibet Military Permit>

Tibet Group Visa from Nepal
Tibet Group Visa from Nepal
Tibet Travel Permit
Tibet Travel Permit
Tibet Border Pass
Tibet Border Pass

Tips for Kathmandu to Mount Kailash Travel

High Altitude Sickness: The average altitude of Ngari is over 4,000km and tourists should pay great attention to High Altitude Sickness. A full physical examination before the tour is will be helpful, and it is important to ask for the doctor’s suggestion. During the Tibet tour, avoid strong activities and keep warm. If you get cold, it will be seriously dangerous in high-altitude area. Remember to asend slowly during your Mount Kailash trek.You can pack an oxygen box in case.

Best Time to Visit: Ngari enjoys a harsh climate. It is much colder and windier than Lhasa, Gyantse, and Shigatse. The best time to visit Mount Kailash ranges from April to October when it is much warmer. During the other season, the temperature is rather low and the road might be frozen.

Food and Accommodation: As a remote area of Tibet, the food and accommodation in Ngari are both in simple and basic condition. The roadside restaurants provide limited dishes, mostly Tibetan food and Sichuan Cuisine. You’d better bring some food and snacks with you. Sagar County has several guest houses with 2 star standard. While in Darchen, there are only some basic guest houses.

Recommended Tibet Tour Packages

Tibet Discovery Tours is specialized in finding unique experience of Tibet, and leading you to explore what interests you most. Our Private Tibet Nepal Tours will take you to explore deep into the Holy Land, with loads of options, freedom & flexibility. You can choose from the following hand-picked tour packages which have been successfully operated for many years and created loads of amazing experiences for our customers, or check more Nepal Tibet Tours >>

Have a question? Get answers from our travel experts soon!

  • Your Question:
  • Your Name:
  • Your Email:
  • Submit