The Humble Abode of Lord Shiva
With the skyrocketing altitude of 21,778 feet above sea level, Kailash Mansarovar Yatra is one of the toughest pilgrimages in the world. The humble home of Lord Shiva and Mata Parvati, this holy peak is located in Tibet, China. Lake Mansarovar and Lake Rakshastal have many legends associated with it that come as a part of the journey to the peak. The peak lies in a very inhospitable and cut-off part of the Tibetan terrain, making it a hard journey to embark on.
Myths and Folklores
The legends speak that nobody has successfully climbed Mount Kailash, despite it being adaptable for mountaineers to reach. Some pilgrims also believe that the entire circumscribed journey around the peak should be covered in one day, which is about 52 kms long!
Many locals believe that setting foot on the slopes of the mountain is an unforgivable sin, and many have died in the process of achieving this feat. That is another reason why the mountain fails to be climbed upon.
For the Jain Community, their first law creator Guru Rishabhdev gained nirvana here. For the Buddhists, the peak is home to Buddha Demchok. For Bons, this peak is their spiritual power source. This is where their spiritual leader Shenrab descended from Heaven. For them, this place is a nine story swastika holding immense power.
For Tibetans, this place is known as the ‘ Kang Rampoche’ which translates to Precious Jewel, and is very revered amongst the community.
For all these faiths, the world is divided into 4 parts by the life giving sustenance of rivers Indus, Brahmaputra, Sutlej and Karnali.
How to reach (pick up and drop point)
According to the travelers needs, the pick and drop can be arranged from the major cities. Apart from those, the usual pick and drop points are from the closest connecting cities to Kailash Mansarovar. From India, the pickup can be arranged from Delhi, Lucknow, Sikkim and in Nepal from Kathmandu as well.
For the drop points, a roundabout trip can easily be arranged for the passengers. Major cities pick and drop services can be availed and the further transportation also comes under our regime.
The travelers can connect via airplanes, trains and roads as well, which can be arranged according to the availability of resources and time.
Via Air- As this holy land is not quite connected, the nearest airport is Ngari Gunsa Airport, China. From Lucknow, you can catch a flight from Chaudhary Charan Singh Airport. This airport can be accessed from all major and tier 2 cities as well. Another direct flight is to Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu, Nepal.
Via Train- Via Train, you can reach the nearest destination near Kailash Mansarovar and travel via road. The best routes as per your travel plans can be arranged from Kathgodam, Lucknow, Ramnagar, Kotdwar or Rishikesh Railway Stations.
Via Road - If you want to have a long journey and enjoy it, you can take a bus for this region from India, China or Nepal as well. You need to book the seats earlier as there is a limited number of vehicles allowed. The routes are from the Indian Border in Uttarakhand state, Kashgar (China), Hilsa (Nepa) and Shigatse (Tibet).
Temperature and Weather
Mount Kailash hosts a very frigid environment. Tours are usually slated from May to September where July and August host some of the rainiest months. Apart from this time, snow covers all the passages to the place rendering it unreachable. The temperature ranges from 5 to 18 degrees during daytime in hot months and -1 to 10 in nighttime. During the rainy months the temperature can go from 8-22 degrees in daytime to 0-11 degrees in nighttime.
Routes to travel and ways of transportation
Via Lucknow- This amazing tour can be availed through a flight which lands in Tibet, or by a helicopter ride that takes you through the amazing landscapes of Tibet. You can take a direct drive to Nepal from where this journey starts. Embark on the journey where you will get to experience different landscapes within India, Nepal and Tibet.
Via Nepal- This journey includes the beautiful villages of Simikot, Hilsa and Talakot. The definite attractions from this journey which starts on 4 wheelers includes the Mansarovar Lake, Rakshastal Lake, Darchen, Derapuk, Jhutulpuk and Drolma La Pass.
Via Delhi- You can take a direct flight to Lhasa and get overland crossing the Border to Gyirong Port. Opting for this route can give you one of the best sights of the world's highest peak- Mount Everest.
Via Uttarakhand - You can reach the beautiful landscape of Kailash Mansarovar from Tanakpur or Kathgodam regions of Uttarakhand while crossing through the terrain of Dharchula- Tawaghat- Lipulekh Darma and Jauhar Valley. This can be done with on road mode and trekking as well. Currently, works are underway from passing a route through Pithoragarh directly to Kailash Mansarovar. Lipulekh Pass is also another way to access Tibet Valley.
Important places around it
Mansarovar Lake and Rakshas Tal are the main major attractions near Kailash Parbat.
Mansarovar Lake - According to folklore, this is the lake where Goddess Parvati used to bathe. The lake marks up to its sacredness as it looks like it also changes colors. It is a clear blue near the shore and a shining emerald green near the center.
Rakshas Taal - Locally known as Lang-Tso, this lake is located on the western side of Mansarovar Lake and is believed to be the meditative place of Ravana, where he resided for thousand years to impress Lord Shiva. According to local legends, people draw negative energy if they touch the water in this lake. This lake does not host any living organisms as well.
There are many beautiful and mystic monasteries surrounding this holy abode of Lord Shiva. These monasteries namely Nyari, Drirapuk, Selung, Dzultripuk and Gyangzha are an epitome of beauty with their beautiful sculptures, murals and statues.
Subsidies given to the pilgrims by state governments
Uttar Pradesh - The UP government provides 1,00,000 Rs. to support travelers to reach this holy abode. This is an undertaking of the Department of Religious Affairs, UP government. This can be availed once for a person via government sanctioned travel or arranged by a private travel agent. To avail this, visit www.updharmarthkarya.in to know more.
Rajasthan - Like UP, Rajasthan government also provides a hefty subsidy of Rs. one lakh for pilgrims traveling to Kailash Mansarovar. The travel should be arranged via the Ministry of External Affairs for availing the subsidy. The Devasthan Department conducts this and usually it is provided to only a 100 pilgrims. To apply for this, visit devasthan department’s website on the Ministry of External Affairs page.
Haryana - The state of Haryana compensates 50,000 Rs. to pilgrims who complete the Yatra. The Yatra has to be done through the Ministry of External Affairs in this case. To apply for this, visit devasthan department’s website on the Ministry of External Affairs page. The payment can be processed through a completion certificate which has to be applied within 15 days of completion of travel.
Tamil Nadu - In total, a thousand pilgrims each year receive 40,000 for visiting the holy place and 10,000 extra if they also visit Muktinath. The subsidy is claimed under the CM's relief fund.
Karnataka - A total of 35,000 is granted to pilgrims who travel and complete this yatra. This comes under the Karnataka Hindu Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments Department. To avail this subsidy, visit www.temples.karnataka.gov.in to know more. For offline consultancy, you can also visit the office of Karnataka Hindu Religious Institutions and Charitable Endowments Department in Bangalore.
Chhattisgarh - Sanctioned by Chhattisgarh Tourism Department, the subsidy provided to pilgrims is 50,000 Rs. which can be claimed by applying on their website www.visitcg.in.
Gujrat- Gujrat government offers 23,000 Rs. subsidy through ministry of External Affairs. Their own department Yatra Dham Department organizes a function to distribute this. To take advantage of this subsidy, visit www.yatradham.gujrat.gov.in and know more about their schemes.
Madhya Pradesh- An amount of 30,000 Rs. is sanctioned for pilgrims who successfully complete this Yatra through the Ministry of External Affairs. A department by the name of Religious Trust and Endowment looks after its regulation. This subsidy should be applied within 60 days of travel, which can be accessed on their website www.religioustrust.mp.gov.in.
Delhi- An amount of Rs. 30,000 is sanctioned to pilgrims traveling to Kailash Mansarovar from the Ministry of External Affairs. This scheme is projected under Mukhyamantri Tirth Yojna.
All foreign travelers are required to have certain travel permits to enter any foreign land. For Kailash Mansarovar, you need-
For all these travel permits, you need to have at least a month-long window to get them approved. As your guides and travel needs are looked after by us, we make sure to get all these permits in time with all your required documents.
This holy land, being an autonomous part of China Region, usually accepts Chinese Yuan. Otherwise, US Dollars also work as an acceptable currency in the region. Try to carry cash in this region as there is a shortage of ATMs and the region is quite cut-off from the mainland.