The journey to Kailash Mansarovar conquers Mount Kailash and Lake Mansarovar which lies in the Ngari Prefecture, a Tibet Autonomous Region of China. It is less than 100 km north of the western trijunction of the borders of China, India, and Nepal.
It has religious significance to the people of Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Bon religion. Hindus consider Mount Kailash and Lake Mansarovar as Lord Shiva who reside there with goddess Parvati and his children, Ganesha and Kartikeya.
The Buddhists consider Mount Kailash as the home of the Buddha Cakrasamvara who represents supreme bliss and Lake Mansarovar as the mother principle. People perform Parikrama or Kora in Mount Kailash.
They walk the 52- 52-kilometer circumference of Mount Kailash. Doing this, they believe brings positive effects like a collection of good karma and good fortune. People take a dip in Lake Mansarovar to wash away all their sins.
So, every year many pilgrims from different countries such as India, Nepal, and Tibet take on the Kailash Mansarovar Yatra. This Yatra is one of the most taxing pilgrimage journeys in the world as the visitors trek along the most rugged terrains and mountain passes.
Why take on the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?
Besides its religious significance, the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra provides a spiritual awakening to the visitors. Since pilgrims from many countries visit, the journey offers a cultural exchange opportunity.
The unique biodiversity and ecosystem of the destination is another important thing to take note of during the trip. There are many places to
visit during the trip including, Tirthapuri Hot Springs, Rakshastal Lake, Gouge Kingdom, Ashtapad, and Yam Dwar.
When is the best season to visit Kailash Mansarovar?
May to September is the best time to commence Kailash Manasarovar Yatra. At that time, the weather was mild and roads were far more accessible. July to August i.e. monsoon season makes the journey challenging due to heavy rainfalls and landslides.
Kailash Manasarovar Yatra in full moon allows you to get the sight of the majestic terrain in the bright moonlight. Mount Kailash glows with the moonlight in the sky full of stars. During a full moon, different cultural rituals are also performed. It makes the journey more memorable.
How many days does it take to complete the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?
One can choose from the routes via India, Nepal, and Tibet for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra. You can get to Mount Kailash by helicopter or by bus. Traveling through Nepal takes about 14 days from arrival to departure. The total days can change due to unforeseen circumstances or due to the extension of the journey to other destinations.
What accommodations can you get during the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?
In the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra, you mostly traverse through remote areas and high altitudes where limited accommodations are available. The foods provided are basic and vegetarian. In the high altitudes, there are no hotels and guesthouses so you will be sleeping in the tents.
However, in the major cities, you can find three to four-star hotels with good facilities. If you are associated with a trekking company for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra, they provide packed meals like fruits, energy
bars, and water. So, it is necessary to find a good travel agency for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra.
How much does the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra cost?
The Kailash Mansarovar Yatra’s cost depends on many factors including, the visitors’ country of origin, group of people, route chosen, and permit fees. Visitors need a Tibet travel permit and a Tibet visa. You also need to perfume all the official formalities at the immigration.
The overall cost decreases if you are traveling in a big group. The approximate cost is USD 2650 to 2800 per person. You need to have extra personal expenses. It can be for horse rides, laundry, telephone services, extended hotel stays, and many more.
How can you prepare for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?
The Kailash Manasarovar Yatra is physically and mentally hard. At high altitudes, the lower oxygen level, the unfavorable atmosphere, and high altitudes may cause illnesses such as altitude sickness, lethargy, loss of balance, sleeplessness, elevated irritability, and dyspnea.
So, you must have good physical fitness. You can engage in jogging, trekking or hiking, stair climbing, aerobics, and other exercises before embarking on the trip. You can also consume multivitamins.
Can elderly people do the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?
People between 18-70 years old who are in good health can go for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra. If you can walk and trek for long hours and acclimatize in high altitudes easily, then Kailash Manasarovar Yatra is not so difficult.
What are the do’s and don’t during the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?
During the trip, you need to avoid sedatives, powerful antibiotics, and sleeping pills. You need to slow down and acclimatize. You must drink a
lot of water and avoid getting into fights. You must respect the local communities and their traditions. You need to stay with your group throughout the trip.
You must not entertain the abrupt outburst from fellow travelers. You need to avoid littering. You must avoid any activities that may disturb the wildlife. You must follow safety rules to avoid unnecessary risks. You should not click pictures or videos of Chinese customs or security personnel.
What do you need to pack for the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra?
For the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra, you must pack warm woolen clothes including caps, thermals, jackets, gloves, and warm socks. You need comfortable boots. You need to carry sunglasses and sunblock.
You need to carry strong bags. You also need a walking stick. You need to carry emergency medical kits. You must not pack any books, magazines, or pictures of Tibet. The Chinese customs are strict about these rules.
In conclusion, the Kailash Manasarovar Yatra is an unforgettable trip where you get to see the beautiful biodiversity, vast plains, and snow- capped mountains while getting spiritually inspired. After the trip, you will have fresh positive energy and a changed perspective on life.