Go East Young Man2020-03-02T10:39:49+00:00

Go East, Young Man

From the land “south of the clouds” to Tibet: The world’s highest mountains and the Himalayas of Eastern Tibet

Until recently, the way up from Shangri-la in the province of Yunnan to the Tibetan plateau via the eastern Himalayas was off-limits to foreigners. On our new Tibet Motorcycle Tour, you can look forward to the finest views of Everest, the world’s highest mountain, the cultural highlights of Tibet, remote mountain roads, undiscovered wilderness on the banks of the Mekong, snow-covered Himalayan peaks, deep evergreen forests, and of course endless winding roads and beautiful mountain passes.

Our Tibet Motorcycle Tour kicks off in Chengdu, where we’ll board a flight into the Himalayas to Shangri-La, the northernmost tip of Yunnan province, a place inhabited by Tibetans. The colorful old town of Shangri-La is the perfect introduction to our Tibet Motorcycle Tour. In eastern Tibet, you can look forward to remote mountain roads through primeval forests, the “Switzerland of the Orient” in Lulang, and grasslands with grazing yaks. We’ll ride along the majestic Mekong, Salween and Yangtze – the longest river in Asia – and enjoy the rugged sandstone landscapes and deep gorges.

Having arrived on the Tibetan plateau, we’ll start our ride to Everest Base Camp, crossing the Roof of the World, following the banks of the sacred, azure-blue Yamdrok salt lake, and visiting the region’s most important monasteries and fortresses. The highest mountain in the world awaits us with spectacular views at sunset. We’ll spend the night at Rongbuk Monastery with a view of Everest. The journey ends in Lhasa, where we’ll explore the new section of the mountain metropolis, as well as its many-faceted traditional quarter with highlights such as the world-renowned Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple and Barkhor Market. From Lhasa, we’ll return to Chengdu. This tour combines the cultural and scenic highlights of Tibet and the pure riding pleasure of the region’s most beautiful country roads.

Be one of the first to savor this brand-new adventure!

Highlights

  • The old town of Shangri-la and the largest prayer wheel in the world; the beginning of the Tibetan world in the Himalaya foothills
  • The uncharted East Tibet with its winding roads all the way up to the high plateau of Tibet
  • The mighty rivers Yangtze, Salween and Mekong in East Tibet
  • The “pass of the 72 hairpin curves” near Zogong, dubbed “Serpent Pass” by locals
  • Ride onto the Tibetan high plateau through gorges and across 5,000 meter high passes
  • Visit of Samye monastery and the first palace of Tibet: Yumbulakhang
  • Dream like views on the mountain giants Makalu, Lhotse, Cho Oyu, Shisha Panama and of course Mt. Everest – the highest mountains on earth
  • The spectacular 108 road bends on the way to Mt. Everest Base Camp
  • Overnight at Rongbuk monastery at the “foot” of Mt. Everest on 5,200 meters altitude, close to Mt. Everest Base Camp
  • Breaks at Ranwu and Yamdrok Lake, mighty Himalayan salt lakes
  • Sightseeing in Lhasa: the historic Barkhor market, the Potala Palace (former residence of the Dalai Lama), and the Jokhan, the most important temple for Tibetans
  • 5,220 meter high Gyatso La pass and 5,100 meter high Karo La pass
  • Palcho monastery, hosting the largest pagoda of Tibet and the Gyangze fort, the Tashilhunpo monastery

2021
11.04. – 25.11.

Shineray X5: 4.490€
BMW 310 GS: 4.790€
BMW 800 GS: 5.090€
Pillion: 3.900€
Single Room: +690€

16 days / 15 nights / 11 riding days

Overnight stays in hotels of the middle class and in guesthouses.

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Go East, Young Man Motorcycle Tour Itinerary

Day 1: Arrival in Chengdu

Arrival in Chengdu. The first day of this Tibet Motorcycle Tour begins with a pick-up service at the airport and transfer to the nearby hotel. Group dinner.

Day 2: Transfer to Shangri-La

Transfer to the airport. Flight to Shangri-La. Our tour starts in the romantic old town of Shangri-La. Its small two-story houses are built entirely of wood and are richly decorated with carvings. In Shangri-La, we’ll visit the 22-meter prayer wheel – the largest in the world – and we should turn it at least three times for good karma.

Day 3: Shangri-La – Feilaisi

Our first day in the saddle of our Tibet Motorcycle Tour will take us along the canyons of the Yangtze River, the longest river in Asia and third-longest river in the world. Here, at “only” 1,900 meters above sea level, we’re at the lowest altitude of the tour. It’s quite warm and cacti grow on the river banks – an incredible contrast to our coming adventures. We’ll ride along the 5,000-meter Mountain of the White Horse to Feilaisi, the “Flying Temple”. The temple is dedicated to the deity enthroned on the peak of Kawa Karpo, the highest mountain of the eastern Himalayas and a unique highlight with its majestic 6,700 meters. We’ll spend the night there, at the foot of the mountain.

Distance covered: approx. 210 km

Day 4: Feilaisi – Zogang

Two more passes with altitudes of 4,300 and 3,900 meters await us. We’ll ride along the rugged banks and gorges of the Upper Mekong – which is quite unlike the placid river downstream in Thailand – to Zogang. We’ll leave Yunnan and continue to Tibet. A 4,300 meter high pass with sweeping vistas of the valley below will bring us to one of the highlights of our Tibet Motorcycle Tour: a snaking pass known by the locals only as “the road of 72 curves”.

Distance covered: approx. 380 km

Day 5: Zogang – Ranwu Lake

The day begins with a ride along the Salween River, which originates on the Tibetan plateau and descends to Shan State in Myanmar. On the way, we can enjoy spectacular vistas in the gorges through the expansive sandstone landscapes. The quiet mountain roads ascend through gorges and evergreen forests to Ranwu via a 4,400-meter pass. We’ll spend the night directly at the shore of Ranwu – a mountain lake at an altitude of nearly 4,000 meters framed by snow-covered 5,000-meter peaks – in the most beautiful resort of the region, of course.

Distance covered: approx. 290 km

Day 6: Ranwu Lake – Lulang

We’ll continue along winding roads through fragrant spruce forests into the “Switzerland of the Orient”, with its wooded mountains and rolling grasslands with grazing yaks. Today is going to be another day for spectacular views on the Tibet Motorcycle Tour. We’ll take the various passes on the road to Lulang and enjoy the fascinating landscapes rolling by. There, in the small town of Lulang, we’ll spend the night.

Distance covered: approx. 270 km

Day 7: Lulang – Langxian

Today we’ll cross a 5,000-meter pass and reach the town of Nyingtri, where we’ll take a short break. We’ll spend the night in the small town of Langxian.

Distance covered: approx. 310 km

Day 8: Langxian – Tsedang

We’ll head westward on winding roads close to the Nepalese border. From our vantage point on the Tibetan plateau, Nepal lies far below. On the way, we’ll visit the Thakpo Shedrup Ling Monastery in Gyanltsa and tackle a 4,900-meter pass. Samye Monastery and the 2,000-year-old Yumbulakhang Palace, Tibet’s oldest building, are also on the program. The Yumbulakhang stands on a huge rock overlooking a broad and fertile valley.

Distance covered: approx. 220 km

Day 9: Tsedang – Xigaze

Throughout the day, we’ll follow the Yarlung Tsangpo River, the life-giving water supply of Lhasa and southern Tibet. The broad, rushing river will accompany us to our destination for the day and captivate you with fascinating vistas. We’ll follow it through fields and gorges to Xigaze. In Xigaze, a comfortable hotel in the center of the town awaits us. There are markets nearby, as well as the Tashilhunpo Monastery, which we can visit in the late afternoon.

Distance covered: approx. 350 km

Day 10: Xigaze – Rongbuk Monastery

Everest Base Camp, one of the highlights of our tour, is on the program today. We’ll cross Gyatso-La Pass, the highest of the tour at 5,222 meters, and take an incredible road with hundreds of twists and turns and views of the numerous 8,000-meter peaks – a truly memorable experience. The road will first take us to Tingri and wind further up into the Himalayas, where we have a perfect view of the most famous and highest 8,000-meter mountains and their surrounding valleys.

Next up: Rongbuk. The road is closed for motorcycles around 10 kilometers before the monastery. While the Base Camp, which is 2.5 km from Rongbuk Monastery, has been closed since January 2019, we still have a spectacular view of Everest. We’ll spend the night in Rongbuk Monastery’s very basic guest house and enjoy the mountain vistas.

Distance covered: approx. 330 km

Day 11: Rongbuk – Sakya

We’re going to tackle two 5,000-meter passes today. We’ll take a remote mountain road past a dry salt lake and arrive in Sakya. The monastery of Sakya was once the most important of its kind in Tibet. The Mongolian architecture stands out in contrast to the other Tibetan monasteries, its walls rising majestically above the grasslands of the valley.

Distance covered: approx. 250 km

Day 12: Sakya – Gyangze

Today’s ride continues on the Friendship Highway between China and Nepal toward Gyangze, through tiny hamlets and along endless wheat fields with isolated villages. The ancient Gyangze Dzong fortress towers over the small town of Gyangze. We’ll visit the Buddhist Pelkhor Monastery, also known as the “Monastery of Ten Thousand Paintings”. With its four floors, 108 chapels and over 10,000 murals, it is the largest stupa (pagoda) in Tibet.

Distance covered: approx. 240 km

Day 13: Gyangze – Lhasa

From Gyangze, we’ll ride the 5.100-meter Karo La Pass that takes us right up to the foot of a mighty glacier. At an altitude of 4,900 meters, we’ll enjoy a breathtaking view of the azure-blue Yamdrok Lake and ride the winding roads along the Yarlung Tsangpo River to Lhasa.

Distance covered: approx. 260 km

Day 14: Lhasa

In the morning, Potala Palace, the former residence of the Dalai Lama, is on the program, as well as Barkhor Market, the historical old city and Jokhang Temple, the holiest site in Tibet.

In the afternoon, we’ll visit Sera Monastery a few kilometers outside of Lhasa.

Day 15: Lhasa – Chengdu

Morning/midday flight to Chengdu. Overnight stay near the airport. There will be time for optional individual visits to the Chengdu Panda Base.

Day 16: Chengdu

Individual departure from Chengdu. The end of our Tibet Motorcycle Tour.

Don’t Miss Out On a Wonderful Experience

Book your Tour Now – Go East, Young Man

We can accommodate only 8 motorbikes on this tour.

Since our tours get filled up fast, please book our Go East, Young Man Tour now to avoid disappointment.

Our Next available tours are as follows:

2021
11.04. – 25.11.

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Questions & Answers

Included Services2020-01-23T10:18:00+00:00
  • English speaking guide on own motorbike
  •  English speaking local Tibet guid
  •  Mechanic service
  •  Service vehicle for luggage and spare motorbike
  •  15 overnight stays in mid range hotels, one simple accommodation at Rongbuk Monastery
  •  Motorcycle of choice, insurance with partial cover
  •  Petrol
  •  Breakfast, lunch snack, dinner, soft drinks, free water during the tour
  •  All entrance fees for sights mentioned in the itinerary
  •  Provisional Chinese driving license
  •  All airport transfers (beside airport transfer on day 16)
  •  Domestic flights Chengdu – Lhasa and Shangri-La – Chengdu
What do I need to bring along for a motorcycle tour?2020-01-06T11:30:46+00:00

You will definitely want to bring your riding suit with protectors and a helmet. You will also need motorcycle boots or lighter riding shoes and gloves. While your gear should be breathable in hot climates, you need to be ready for anything at high altitudes and in the Himalayas. We recommend winter gloves, warm socks, liners for jackets and trousers, a scarf and face protection. Rain gear is a good idea if your riding suit is not waterproof.
Please note that we do not hire out clothing. We believe that your own riding gear will fit best and thus give you the best protection. If you forget anything, we’ll find a solution, however. We often have spare gear with us, or we can point you in the direction of a shop.

Do I need travel insurance and travel health insurance?2019-12-18T06:24:21+00:00

We always recommend that you take out travel insurance to cover costs incurred if you need to cancel the trip due to illness or other reasons. When shopping for travel health insurance, make sure the policy covers the potentially high cost of medical evacuation to your home country. Both forms of insurance can save you a lot of money in an emergency and we recommend them unreservedly. In many countries, your national motoring organization can provide the coverage you need.

What should I keep in mind when riding with a passenger?2019-12-18T06:24:20+00:00

Riding two-up is almost always possible. In difficult terrain or on rough tracks, every passenger has a guaranteed seat in the support vehicle to keep things relaxed for both rider and pillion.

Do pillion passengers have a guaranteed seat in the support vehicle?2019-12-18T06:24:16+00:00

Yes, all passengers have a guaranteed seat. In bad weather or challenging riding conditions, they can switch to the support vehicle at any time – and back to the bike when conditions improve.

How big are the groups? What’s the minimum number of participants?2019-12-18T06:24:15+00:00

Groups generally consist of 8 to 14 riders and 2 to 6 passengers. The minimum number of participants is 6 riders.

What’s the Classic Bike Adventure travel team like?2019-12-18T06:24:12+00:00

Our European tour guides are skilled motorcyclists and inveterate travelers who love India. They’re resilient in the face of stress and know the history and culture of the regions they cover. Our Indian mechanics are experienced Enfield specialists who all speak English and are happy to help with any technical problem, great or small.
A stand-in rider is always available. More information on our travel concept is available here.

What do I need in the way of documents?2019-12-18T06:24:09+00:00

You will need your passport, national driving license, international driving license and flight ticket. Please be sure to make photocopies of all of your important travel documents and carry them separately. They can be invaluable in an emergency.

Do I need a driving license?2019-12-18T06:24:05+00:00

All riders must have a valid motorcycle driving license issued in their home country. An international driving license is also required. Be sure to contact the relevant authorities in your home country well in advance for more information on obtaining an international driving license.

Will I need maps?2019-12-18T06:31:37+00:00

Simple street maps are often available locally. The best road maps are available from the German publishers Reise Know How and Nelles. These are only available in specialized bookstores or online.

Where can I stow my bags?2019-12-18T06:24:02+00:00

Your baggage will be carried by the support vehicle. Please don’t pack too much – remember: less is more. From time to time, we’ll have to carry our baggage over short distances to the hotel. Baggage is not insured, so please be sure to purchase your own baggage insurance for the trip if necessary. Your personal items for the day are best kept in the saddlebags or your daypack. Tank bags – including magnetic ones – can be used on the Enfields, but we don’t provide them.

What’s a typical day on the road like?2019-12-18T06:22:49+00:00

A travel day normally begins at 8 am with breakfast. Around 9 am, after a short briefing by the road captain, it’s time for the day’s riding, the mileage of which can vary quite a bit. Plenty of time will be available for lunch and coffee breaks, of course. Depending on the day’s mileage, we’ll reach the destination hotel between 3 and 4 pm.
Since our tours vary considerably, we may also hit the road at 8 am on high-mileage days – which is also nice, because then we have the whole day ahead of us.

Why we’re starting and ending our Tibet Motorcycle Tour in China2019-11-22T09:42:55+00:00

In the wake of the earthquake in Nepal in 2015 and road construction in many parts of the country, the journey from Kathmandu to Lhasa has not only become time-consuming, but also dangerous. The entire route from Kathmandu to the Chinese border at Rasua Gadhi on the Nepalese side and Gyirong on the Chinese side is currently a construction site. The road surface consists of sand and large stones, and it’s extremely dusty. Numerous trucks also use the road. Not even enduro enthusiasts would enjoy the ride. We would also have to factor in the time-consuming border procedures on the Nepalese and, in particular, the Chinese side, that can take up to a full day.

Starting and ending the Tibet Motorcycle Tour in Kathmandu would thus mean putting up with the same route and dealing with comparably long border procedures twice on the same tour. Regardless of what other organizers may think, that’s not our idea of a fun Tibet Motorcycle Tour. The road conditions and waiting times would not exactly be the highlights of a ride to Everest Base Camp. In our opinion, it makes no sense to start and end a tour with a focus on Tibet as its highlight in Kathmandu. And besides, a fleet of state-of-the-art bikes is waiting and ready to roll in Tibet.

If you want to discover the best Nepal has to offer – and not just see it as a transit country – we recommend our Magic Nepal Motorcycle Tour, or our spectacular Mustang Motorcycle Tour. On our Tibet Motorcycle Tours we hardly ever take the same road twice – we only have the most beautiful routes, and we don’t waste precious time at borders. We want you to remember your ride to Everest Base Camp as a true highlight.

What kind of bikes will we ride?2019-12-18T06:26:11+00:00

Depending on the specific tour, the following bikes are available for our motorcycle tours in Tibet and China: The BMW models G 310 GS, F 800 GS and R 1200GS, as well as the Shineray X5, a 400cc single-cylinder enduro.

How much is the deposit for the bike on China and Tibet tours?2019-12-18T06:26:03+00:00

The deposit for the motorcycle varies depending on the choice of bike:
Shineray X5 400: EUR/US$ 500
BMW G 310 GS: EUR/US$ 1,000
BMW F 800 GS and R 1200 GS: EUR/US$ 1,500

Tour Concept by RC Hendrik

About RC Hendrik