Things to do in Mount Kailash
Mount Kailash, also known as the most sacred mountain in the world with amazing pyramid-shaped mountain of black stone which is also a popular destination for tourists. Mt. Kailash is one of the most demanding treks in Tibet, this three-day hike around the mountain is an amazing experience. However, there are more things to see and do around the area of Mount Kailash than just hiking.
Explore Mount Kailash
The Kailash Kora Trek is a three-day hike around the sacred mountain that is popular with both tourists and pilgrims, and this holy mountain, sees thousands of visitors every year. The trek covers a distance of around 52 kilometers, and most tourists complete the trek in around three days.
Starting at the small village of Darchen, just below the southern slopes of the mountain, the hike heads up through the valley to the first stop at the famous Drirapuk Monastery.
On the second day, the hike continues up over the high pass of Dolma La, at an altitude of around 5,630 meters above sea level, the highest pass of the tour, and then drop down again to the Dzultripuk Monastery.
The final day of the trek is mostly downhill from the Dzultripuk Monastery, where you spend the second night, finishing back in the village of Darchen, where you started. Trekking through the lush valley, this is the easiest part of the whole trek, and a great relaxing way to finish this hike around the sacred mountain.
Visit Five Monasteries
Mount Kailash is actually surrounded by five monasteries. They are:
• Chuku Monastery
• Dirapuk Monastery
• Dzultripuk Monastery
• Selung Monastery
• Gyangzha Monastery
Chuku Monastery is located on the outer kora route, a short hike up the valley from Tarboche. The monastery contains three objects that are always interesting to visitors; the Chuku statue, the Conch Shell and the Teapot.
Drirapuk Monastery, the first place you will stop for the night on the three-day trek. This monastery is fronted by a long row of white stupas, and contains a number of statues and Buddhist relics that have been stored there for centuries.
Dzultripuk is the third monastery and the second stop for trekkers along the route. This monastery lies on the west bank of the Zhong Chu (river), and was built around sacred stone formations that are believed to have been formed by Milarepa. The monastery also contains Milarepa’s Cave, where he spent many years of his life. The cave is topped by a stone slab that is said to have the hand and foot prints of Milarepa from when he pressed the slab into place.
Selung Monastery which sits at 5,020 meters above sea level was built as a spot for the monk’s meditation, and is the first monastery on the inner circuit.
Gyangzha Monastery is located at 5,060 meters above sea level. The first Buddhist monastery to be built close to the sacred Mount Kailash, it is the most important monastery in western Tibet.
Manasarovar Lake Kora
Lake Manasarovar is also a sacred place in Tibet which is believed by the Hindu pilgrims to the area that the lake was formed in the mind of Lord Shiva and manifested on the earth as Lake Manasarovar.
In Tibetan Buddhism, it is believed that the sacred lake was the place where Maya Devi conceived Gautama Buddha.
Hence, both religions believe that to bathe in or drink from the lake can wash away the sins of an entire lifetime. Taking a rest during the thrilling Manasarovar Lake Kora shows the unity in diversity among people.
Visit Tirthapuri Hot Springs
The Tirthapuri Hot Springs, located on the north bank of the Sutlej River, northwest of Mount Kailash in Western Tibet, is believed to be associated with Guru Rinpoche. The yatris/pilgrims usually visit Tirthapuri after the completion of Mount Kailash Mansarovar pilgrimage. The pilgrims take bath in pools fed by the springs and visit the monastery containing the guru’s footprint.
Some of the important sites of Kailash Yatra:
Mount kailash Charansparsh
Diraphuk – Charansparsh- Diraphuk
Altitude: Charansparsh : 4572m
Distance: Diraphuk to Charansparsh: 4-5kms (7-8hrs)
holy walking (trekking)
Today we have to wake up early in the morning. After a warm breakfast, we will be trekking to Charansparsh which is located at a height of 4572m. This site of holy Mt. Kailash has religious and mythical significance which is very famous among the Kailash pilgrims who seek the blessings of the supreme Lord Shiva. Pilgrims give pure determination and have faith when he wants to achieve huge accomplishment. So, the pilgrims travel here to seek blessings of Almighty God. The pilgrims touch the foothills of the mountains which they believe to be the feet of Lord Shiva which provide them mental and physical strength to complete the parikrama. The marvelous breathtaking beauty will develop your faith in god.
After Charansparsh we will return back to Derapuk and stay overnight in Derapuk in a monastery guest house.
MOUNT KAILASH INNER KORA
Diraphuk INNER KORA to Zuthulphuk.
Altitude: Zuthulphuk- 4700m
holy walking (trekking)
Today is a very challenging and sensitive day for us as we will be trekking for 22kms today to reach Zuthulphuk. In the inner kora, we will be passing through Kuber Kund which is one of the most sensitive walk. We have to walk through deep layers of snow. The sharpness of stones is very scary. Without the proper guidance of climbing Sherpas, it will be very difficult find our way. Our inner faith and will power will take us to success.
After completing inner kora we will arrive Zhutulphuk at late evening for our overnight stay at Zuthulphuk guest house.
Visit Darchen to Astapath and Saptarishi caves
Saptarishi caves- 6000m
Distance: Darchen to Saptarishi caves (6kms) and then ten minutes walk to reach Astapath
Driving and trekking.
From Darchen, we will visit Astapad and Saptarishi Caves.
Everyone seeks nirvana at some point in their life. Achieving nirvana is the highest level of inner peace of mind. Astapad refers to “eight steps” which is one of the most religious sites for attaining freedom from pleasuring life. This journey combines eight steps leading to caves of different kinds. The devotees take the parikrama covering a distance of 52kms around Mt. Kailash to attain the path of liberation.
It falls on the way of Nandi inner kora. These caves are situated at a high altitude of 6000m which have significant values among the Pilgrims. The caves consist of 13 chortens. In the time of Nandi inner kora, the trekking to the Saptrishi caves is the most sensitive one.This site is very famous for the sages who were dedicated devotees of Lord Shiva. The pilgrims want to take this immense journey to get the divine grandeur of heavenly abode of Lord Shiva. After leaving Atmalingam, the pilgrims have to climb the vertical facet of the mountain wall to reach Saptrishi caves.
We need to return back to Darchen in the late evening for our overnight stay in Darchen.