Buddhist Pilgrimage and Short Course
14 Days| 6/1/20-6/15/20
$2,700 ($500 deposit)
Travel from the food capital of China, Chengdu, to some of the most beautiful landscapes and diverse cultural areas into the Tibetan Plateau. We will land in the village of GarGon, where we will visit Garchen Rinpoche’s home monasteries and nunnery.
Domestic airfare and overland travel, 3 meals a day (mostly vegetarian) and accommodations for 2 people per room. Soft drinks and extra snacks not included. Daily yoga and meditation instruction as well as AA meetings and sober support.
*Additional personal expenses: RT Airfare to Chengdu, China (CTU) China from SFO/LAX approx. $750 + Chinese Visa $130 + Personal travel Insurance (1 month) $80 + Spending Money $300 (special additional day tours to go to a Panda sanctuary etc. are offered through the guest house)
Deadlines: A $500 deposit will be due to the Pureland Project by March 11 to hold your spot. Final payments of $2,200 will be due on March 31st. This trip is limited to 12 participants.
Air Travel: We will have the flights reserved from a travel agent and ask you to book them leaving the US on June 1st to arrive in Chengdu on June 3rd. departing Chengdu, China on June 14th. Unless onward travel is requested and we can help arrange that!
THE TRIP TO TIBET:
The area of Tibet we will journey to is known as Kham. It is considered the wild west of Tibet, inhabited mostly by nomads. The rugged mountains are not hospitable to any other way of life. Tours to the region are quite rare, yet as roads are being built, the area is seeing rapid change. This trip is not only to share the precious wisdom of Tibet and expose people to its sacred spirit, but also to show the Tibetans how valued and respected their culture is by the outside world.
From Chengdu we will fly up to Yushu in Qinghai and travel by van to Nangchen, Kham. We will stop in Yushu to see Tibetan resilience in action and observe how the city is rebuilding from a devastating earthquake in 2009. In Yushu we will visit Jigden Sumgons birthplace and Apchi Chokyi Drolmas kitchen. As well as joining hundreds of Tibetans in khora of one of Tibet's largest mani stone piles.
We will then travel to Nangchen- visiting Garchen Rinpoche’s birthplace, and visit with and receive teachings from Traga Rinpoche. From Nangchen the Monastery of Gargon- the seat of garchen Rinpoche is only 2.5 hours. We will stay in Gargon for 4 days. Every day will begin with Yoga, meditation and Tibetan lessons, and teachings from the khenpo of Gargon and end with an evening meditation. During the day, our adventures will range from hikes to Yeshe Tsogyals cave to tours of Garchen Rinpoches monasteries. From Gargon we will head back to Chengdu via Yushu. We will have a final celebration dinner in Chengdu before boarding our flights back to the US on June 14th.
Expectations and Conditions: In order to reach the monastery of Gargon, the group travels over roads that are long, bumpy, and dusty. We may need to cross rivers in jeeps, wait for landslides to clear, push our vehicles out of sticky spots or make detours. The altitude is high, the food choices are limited, and the group may camp for one night. Hot showers are mostly in Chengdu and toilets on the road are mostly outhouses. The travel is challenging and rewarding! Stamina, patience, and good teamwork are required. The Garchen Institute Tibet where we stay for 4 days is a vegetarian, sober space and without single-use plastic, please be mindful if you bring plastic, you will need to pack it out with you! The price is based on double occupancy of simple rooms, towels and bedding are always provided. Please pack minimally. We will provide a packing list and further information following your enrollment.
Suggestions: We will have an orientation, at which time we will fill out the visa application together. We will also download necessary apps- google translate Chinese, and Wechat.
Margaret “Meg” Ferrigno Ph.D. founder and Executive Director of the Pureland Project & Pureland Travels LLC. She is a longtime student of H.E. Garchen Rinpoche. Pureland Travel is a subsidiary of the 501c3 which provides support for Garchen Rinpoche’s social projects: his schools, clinic, greenhouses, etc. She has been leading exchanges between Tibetan and American people for the last decade after moving away from Gargon - having lived there for 3 years. The tours now support Tibetan people to sustain their lands and culture. Meg speaks Nangchen-Tibetan and has studied Buddhism in India, Nepal, and Tibet for two decades.