Namtso Lake


Namtso Lake is located at the altitude of 4, 718 meters (15, 479 ft) at the Northern Nakchu grassland in Tibet.

240 Km towards north from Lhasa, with a driving duration of around 4-5 hours, there is one of the most beautiful holy Namtso Lake, which is the largest salt lake in the Tibet Autonomous Region.

Namtso lake is known as one of the most beautiful regions located in the Nangchen Tangla Range, surrounded by white snow mountains and grassland where Nomads will camp in the summer with groups of Yaks.

There is even a signboard near the Namtso Lake written you are in heaven; please cherish everything here.

Namtso lake is also a significant meditation area in the late 11th Century, in the stories of Maha Siddha Milarepa's Biography, his female Disciple Maha Siddha Rechungma used to meditate at Namtso and later many other great Yogis. 

Nowadays Namtso lake is one of the most famous tourist destinations in Tibet, every day many Travelers will travel to Namtso Lake.

Namtso lake is also known as one of the best places to witness the sunrise, sunset, and most importantly stars in the night shown in the photo. If Travelers prefer to travel near the Lake at night, Travelers should beware of the dogs. Travelers can ask for help from our Tour Guide. 

Starting from the year 2019, to protect the nature of Namtso Lake, it is not possible to stay overnight at Namtso Lake. The nearest accommodation is at Damxung Town, which is 60km from Namtso Lake. This makes the tour from Shigatse to Namtso Lake shorter, and it's an excellent way to spend more time in the Nyemo valley and Yangpachen hot spring area. 

Travelers can also choose to stay in Damxung town, which is around 60 km from Namtso Lake at a 2-star hotel with a private bathroom and hot shower. 

They are four ways to get to Namtso Lake 

1. Travel from Lhasa to Namtso Lake directly.

2. Loop tour from Lhasa through Lhundrup valley, Tidrum nunnery, Drigung Till monastery, and Reting monastery.

3. The third route is to travel from Golmud to Lhasa overland visiting Namtso Lake on the way.

4. The final journey is to travel western Tibet Mount Kailash region from Lhasa or Xinjiang or Nepal border and travel through big loop Changtang region including Nyima town and Double glaciers no man land.



There is also a beautiful trekking route to Namtso Lake from Damxung town. This trek route will start from the Kangma monastery on the east hill near Damxung. Trek route will camp one night on the high pass at the altitude of nearly 5, 000 meters. The stunning view of the mountain ranges and grassland with stars in the night will make this trek special.

They are many different itineraries to Namtso Lake that Tibet Travelers can recommend to all the Travelers. 

1. Travel from Lhasa to Namtso Lake as a one-day or two days trip.

2. Travel to Namtso Lake with a loop tour including Reting monastery, Tidrum nunnery hot spring, Drigung Till monastery and travel back to Lhasa through Lhundrup valley and Ganden monastery with Drak yerba meditation caves. 

These are the few important monasteries in different schools of Tibetan Buddhism.

Reting monastery is the root monastery of Tibetan Buddhism Kadampa School.  

They were many masters who are from Kadampa school including Maha Siddha Atisha, Maha Siddha Dromtonpa, Maha Siddha Potowa, Maha Siddha Chenngawa, Maha Siddha Sharawa, Maha Siddha Langri Tangpa, and so on. 

I have a deep love for these Kadampa masters; they are the one who cries even when they hear the suffering of strangers, they are the one who put all effort into taking the loss to oneself and giving the gain to others, which is the root of Buddha Dharma. 

Travelers can read my article on proverbs from Maha Siddha's from Kadampa school.  

Maha Siddha is a Sanskrit word. Maha means great, and Siddha means someone who has achieved spiritual attainment. 

Photo: Beauties of Namtso Lake 

From Namtso Lake, it is around 140 km to Reting monastery, from Reting monastery it is about 135 km to Tidrum nunnery. 

Tidrum nunnery was the meditation area of Maha Siddha Padmasambhava and Maha Siddha Kandro Yeshe Tsogyal in the 8th century. 

The best hot spring of Tibet is located in the Tidrum nunnery. Travelers can read my article about what we can do near Tidrum nunnery. 

From Tidrum nunnery, there is around 14 km to Drigung Till monastery and approximately 140 km to Lhasa.

The best sky burial in Tibet is located in the Drigung monastery. It is not allowed to visit the sky burial for Travelers since many decades ago some Travelers who had traveled to sky burial had taken photos and shared on the internet giving negative information.

The reason for sky burial from the Buddhist point of view, we humans have been eating animals' meat every day, and this is our chance to repay the animals since when we are dead, the mind has left the body. 

The motivation or intention is about giving to others without attachment.

Through these great deeds, we create lots of positive merits. Travelers can also read my article on Merit is everything in Buddhism.

From Drigung monastery, there is around 70 km to Ganden monastery and about 110 km to Drak Yerba meditation caves. 

Ganden monastery was built during the 14th century by Maha Siddha Tsongkhapa, and it is the first monastery of Gelukpa school in Tibetan Buddhism. 

Drak yerba meditation cave was once the retreating school of 7th century King Srongtsen Gampo's Tibetan queen.

Travelers can still witness the meditation cave of a few of the Maha Siddha's including king Srongtsen Gampo.

Another route to travel Namtso Lake will be traveling from western Tibet Tsochen town to Nyima town and travel to Namtso Lake. 

This route is known as the biggest western Tibet loop route tour. This tour will take around 20 days or more. 

Fewer Travelers will travel this route since these are also one of the hidden regions where the Changtang is located. 

Changtang is also known as the region where they are fewer local people and lots of wild animals. 

Travelers can send us Emails regarding traveling to Namtso Lake with a big loop from western Tibet. 

Photo: Namtso Lake

Another beautiful lake in Tibet is Yamdrok Lake. Situated 90km from Lhasa. Known as one of the best day trips near Lhasa.


Namtso Lake is the number one destination in Tibet Travelers 2017 tour list, so we highly recommend Travelers to travel to Namtso Lake through Nyemo valley where they are fewer tourists and more nature. 

The duration will be ten days including the Mount Everest north face base camp.

Tibet Travelers is one of the Travel agencies that doesn't focus on speed trips like the eight days tour to Mount Everest north face; we focus on a slower trip like the ten days tour including Namtso Lake. Travelers read this article on the reason behind choosing the ten days tour to Mount Everest north face and Namtso Lake.

These speedy tours are not good for Travelers since Travelers have come to Tibet by spending lots of time and money.

Some Travelers have a dream to visit Tibet before 20-30 years ago, and we want Travelers to travel slow and enjoy every part of it, that is one of the reasons we recommend Travelers the 10 Days tour instead of 8 days to Mount Everest north face base camp and Namtso Lake.  

Few dollars will be saved if Travelers choose the eight days instead of 10 days but Travelers will miss the real Tibet and if travel to Tibet again then it will cost much much more dollar than that saved few dollars.

This is the information regarding Namtso Lake and its surrounding sightseeings. 

Travelers can send us Emails for more information regarding traveling to Namtso Lake.

Written By :Tenzin

Jul 02, 2017


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