The monastery at Lamayuru catching the days last rays. Ladakh, 2009
There are a couple spots left – 2 each, I think – in both my tour in Tibet and the overland trip in Kashmir and Ladakh. I would love to see these spots filled with one of my readers, so if you’ve been thinking about it, these newly opened spots won’t last long.
Tibet, July 20-30, 2010
The trip to Tibet will be absolutely exhilerating. There is more information here, but the highlights are these: we’ll be partnering with some friends in Tibet and working closely with the Tibetans to see and participate in things well off the beaten path. From where we are staying there are over 60 monasteries from all for sects of Tibetan Buddhism in a 50 square mile radius. Of all of Tibet, this area has the highest percentage of actual Tibetans living there – thus also containing the best preserved culture as well. We’ll be in a nomad trading town, so nomads come in almost every day, and we’ll also be in one of the largest pilgrimage sites in all of Tibet – The Jana Mani. The Jana Mani has anywhere from 200 to 1,000 pilgrims circling it at any given time. This is a chance to see real, and disappearing, Tibetan Culture. We’ll be at spectacular horse festival as the climax of the trip, and will not be in Lhasa – Lhasa has close to 30,000 ( yes, thirty thousand!) local and foreign tourists arriving daily in the summer. We’ll get off the path and share an exciting adventure together. This will be a small group, as small as 6-8 participants, so you’ll have more time with me that want. Seriously, you’ll be sick of me by the end.
Kashmir/Ladakh – Sept 12-25, 2010
The trip to Kashmir is also a once in a lifetime kind of thing, in part because traveling with both Matt Brandon and I is something no one should have to do more than once. It’s a great deal of fun and we travel in a small group of 8-9 participants. Matt and I have done tours in both Kashmir and Ladakh now, but never one that spanned both regions and the diversity of geography and culture, from verdant valleys and lakes of Kashmir, and the heavily muslim culture there, to the high altitude deserts of Ladakh and the prevalant Buddhist culure, it’ll be a trip you’ll never forget. Trekking into Lidderwat to spend time with the transhumant Gujjars was a highlight not only of my first trip to Kashmir, but of my life.