Xin Dingri (New Tingri)

228km (141 miles) SW of Shigatse, 255km (158 miles) NE of Zhangmu. Altitude: 4,000m (13,120 ft.)

Confusingly, there are at least two towns known as Dingri. 7km (4.3 miles) before the county capital town of Shelkar, Xin Dingri (New Tingri), is a decent place to break your journey, while Dingri, or Lao Dingri (Old Tingri), the other base for treks in the Everest region, lies 60km (37 miles) further to the west. Pick up your ticket for the Qomolangma Nature Reserve at the Qomolangma Service Center (10:30am-6:30pm) in Xin Dingri, opposite the Snowlands Hotel.

Getting There -- By Land Cruiser, the journey from Shigatse takes around 3 hours. On the hour's drive from Lhatse to Xin Dingri, you'll drive past the Gyantsola Pass at 5,200m (17,056 ft.), a great place for your first view of the Himalayas.

Visitor Information -- The Qomolangma Service Center offers information and tickets.

Lao Dingri (Old Tingri)

289km (179 miles) SW of Shigatse, 184km (114 miles) NE of Zhangmu. Altitude: 4,300m (14,104 ft.)

An impoverished settlement with a breathtaking view of the world's highest peaks, Old Tingri is the favored starting point for those wishing to walk to Everest Base Camp, and a common overnight stop between Katmandu and Lhasa. A row of white-tiled houses and shops to the east of town represents the Han section of the settlement. Good views of Everest may be gained from the ruins of the late-18th-century Tingri Dzong, spread across a hill south of town.