Monasteries & Mountains of Central Tibet

Touring & Trekking with Vassi Koutsaftis

Monasteries & Mountains of Central Tibet

Group | 11 Days | Moderate Touring and Trekking
  • Travel with the legendary Vassi Koutsaftis
  • Venture off the tourist track with a supported four-day trek
  • Join locals for the Tsurphu Cham festival
  • Trek through idyllic valleys below Nyenchen Tanglha, a sacred, 23,330-foot peak
  • Insider's look at Lhasa, Shigatse, and Gyantse, including the iconic Potala Palace

Our ace trek leader Vassi Koutsaftis, who has guided many of GeoEx’s pioneering adventures, is always on the lookout for ways to take intrepid travelers deeper into Tibet. He created this trip to do just that, focusing a moderate four-day trek on lush Yangpachen Valley, the 800-year-old Tsurphu Monastery, and the colorful celebrations of an annual Buddhist festival. Bookending the trip is time in Lhasa, Shigatse, and Gyantse, where Vassi shares the highlight sites, as well as his favorite local haunts.


We had a really fun and exciting time. It exceeded all of our expectations. I can’t say enough good things about the staff, the country, and the itinerary. The camping was outstanding. 

– Doug M.

After meeting in the Holy City of Lhasa, we explore the Potala Palace, join pilgrims at the Jokhang Temple, and stroll the Barkhor, the city’s old quarter.


We drive to Tsurphu Monastery for the Cham festival, a sensory feast of costumes, music, and dancing Our trekking team welcomes us to our first high-altitude camp with comfortable tents and hearty meals.


Three glorious days of trekking with sensational mountain views await in and around the Yangpachen Valley, an area with wide-open plateaus, friendly villages, lumbering yaks, and roaming shepherds.


Take in the immense Tashilunphu Monastery and the fabled Kumbum chorten after traveling by road to Shigatse and Gyantse.


Returning to Lhasa, we savor more stunning vistas and optional exploring Fly home or onward (Kathmandu perhaps? GeoEx is happy to make the arrangements).


Meet Your Guide

Vassi Koutsaftis

One of our best-loved and most-experienced leaders, Vassi has been traveling in Asia for more than 35 years and has been leading treks since 1986.

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Vassi Koutsaftis, GeoEx leader and Condé Nast Traveler Top Travel Specialist, trekking with GeoEx.

Why Trek with GeoEx

Expertise & Safety

Trekking, especially at high elevation in seriously remote places, is thrilling and rewarding—and carries inherent risk. That’s why GeoEx insists on meticulously planning and preparing our treks, far more than most outfitters in the business.

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Stunning reflections in Gokyo Lake, Sagamartha National Park, Khumbu Valley, Nepal with GeoEx.

Dates & Prices


5/21/19 – 5/31/19  


From $4975 per person (Group Trip)


  • Expertise of GeoEx’s travel specialists
  • Services of GeoEx’s in-house air reservations team
  • All accommodations
  • All ground transportation and airport transfers
  • Sightseeing, events, visits, and entrance fees
  • Most meals
  • Bottled water at included meals and while sightseeing
  • Services of a GeoEx trip leader, local guides, drivers, porters and other trek/camp staff
  • Some gratuities
  • Emergency evacuation services and secondary medical expense insurance

A Journey Built Just For You

Take customization to the next level on a journey fully tailored to you. GeoEx's destination specialists will gladly tailor this existing itinerary—or build one completely from scratch—to suit your style, interests, and time frame. Contact us to see what's possible.

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