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How to plan a trip to tibet

How to Travel to Tibet the Right Way

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

The famous Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) of China lies on the world’s highest plateau, between Sichuan Province and Nepal. With an average altitude of around 4,800 meters, this high-altitude plateau land is a popular destination for the modern tourists. However, the unique landscape of the plateau, with its high altitudes, vast open prairies, and innumerable lakes and mountains makes Tibet a very different place from anywhere else in the world you may have been.

And the culture, people, and religion make this one unique place to visit. No matter where you have been before, or what you may have experienced in traveling, as a solo traveler, there are a number of things to take into consideration when traveling to Tibet. So if you want to know how to travel to Tibet the right way, and not end up making the same mistakes others have in the past, then we have some expert advice for you.

You Cannot Travel Alone in Tibet

One of the most common misconceptions about Tibet is the misinformed belief that you can travel alone within the region, just as you can in inland China. The first thing to always remember is that backpacking or traveling alone in Tibet is forbidden. A number of travelers have attempted in the past to enter Tibet alone, and have had to face the consequences of breaking the laws in China.

Traveling to Tibet can be done as a solo traveler, but only on an organized and pre-arranged tour with a registered Tibetan tour operator. You can have your own customized private tour or join a group tour, the choice is yours. But you cannot travel in Tibet without a tour, tour guide, and private vehicle. In fact, the main permit to get into Tibet, the Tibet Travel Permit, is only issued after application from a registered travel agency. You cannot apply in person.

Plan Well in Advance and Book Ahead

Another mistake that people often make, which always leaves them disappointed, is to try and book the trips to Tibet at the last minute. Tibet is not one of the places in Asia where you can travel to at a moment’s notice, and impromptu trips to Tibet are impossible. And there are some very good reasons for this.

Firstly, you need to have a wide variety of travel documents to enter Tibet, many of which can take some time to obtain. In the first place, you will need to have a Chinese Entry Visa (or Chinese Group Visa for those entering from Nepal), which can take around 3-5 days to process with an Embassy of the People’s Republic of China. Only once you have your visa (for entry from inland China) can you book your Tibet tour with a registered Tibet travel agency.

Once your trip is booked, we need to make the application for the Tibet Travel Permit on your behalf, as you are not permitted to make personal applications with the Tibet Tourism Bureau (TTB). This can normally take around 8-9 days now, as the time scale has been reduced. You then need to have time to book your flights to China and either flight or train tickets to Tibet, and time for the booking of your hotel (unless you allow us to do it as part of the package). Overall, for planning a trip to Tibet, you should book the tour with us at least 25 days in advance, with your Chinese Entry Visa already obtained.

Understand about Altitudes and Acclimatization

The Tibetan plateau lies at an average altitude of around 4,800 meters above sea level. At this altitude, the body needs time to adjust to the difference in oxygen levels in the atmosphere, and acclimatization once you arrive can normally take 1-2 days. However, there are some that want a customized tour that will take them straight to Mount Qomolangma or one of the other high-altitude destinations in Tibet.

This can prove to be dangerous, as failing to acclimatize properly to the altitude can result in severe altitude sickness. Altitude sickness can prove to be fatal if left unchecked, so it is recommended to spend a couple of days acclimatizing to the lower altitude of Lhasa, at 3,656 meters, before traveling to areas where the altitudes exceed 5,000 meters. Our customized tour itineraries all include time to acclimatize in Lhasa first, so make the trip safe, even for first-time travelers to Tibet.

Utilize the Knowledge of your Guide

Travel in Tibet is strictly regulated for tourists, and you are not permitted to travel around the region without your Tibetan guide. And while this may be the policy for international tourists to Tibet, it also has definite advantages. Your Tibetan guide can not only show you the best places to visit, but he can also provide you with the information you may require about Tibet from his own personal knowledge. You can also come up against some difficulties in the language barrier, knowing about certain taboos when visiting religious sites, and even issues with taking random photos of the people in Tibet. All of these issues can be advised by your guide, who will make sure that your trip is perfect, and that you can stay out of any potential trouble.

Know which Visa you need and how to obtain it

If you are entering from inland China, you will need to have a Chinese Entry Visa in advance of booking your tour. This is required for applying for the Tibet Travel Permit, and must be obtained from the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China in your country of origin.

When entering Tibet from Nepal, the visa used is the Chinese Group Visa, which is a little different. The visa is a sheet of paper, not an entry stamp, and contains the names of all the members of the party. With the Chinese Group Visa, all named members of the visa group must enter and exit Tibet at the same time and at the same port of entry/exit. It is not possible for the group to split up and leave in different ways at different times.

Book on a Group Tour to Save Money

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

As a foreigner, planning a trip to Tibet can be discouraging considering the planning involved, the permits required and a lot of waiting so patience is a virtue. It takes a great deal of motivation, determination to research and spend many hours reading to come up with a list of places to visit and things to do. Remember a foreigner cannot travel Tibet by oneself. A full time guide is necessary, tour must be booked, private transport must be arranged and permits must be obtained even before arriving in Tibet. So to simplify things here are 5 steps to follow when planning a trip to Tibet.

STEP 1: Understand where you want to go

Tibet is a big country. It is best to stick to one of the top 3-4 known itineraries. Get a travel book like Lonely Planet or read online on top places to visit in Tibet. An easy way would be to look at few tour operators standard itineraries from 3-4 days to 15-20 days. Following places in Tibet top the list:

  1. Lhasa (and its various Monasteries)
  2. Yamdrok Lake
  3. Namtso Lake
  4. Shigatse
  5. Everest Base Camp
  6. Mount Kailash

STEP 2: Find and finalize a Tour Company

My best advice is go to TripAdvisor and read reviews to select one of the top tour operators where dates and budget agree with you. Most of the companies offer standard itineraries. It is worthwhile to note that most of the tour companies are mere agencies and you may end up booking with one agency however going with another company. Our group, booked this particular tour through different agencies but it was CITS who organised the trip. Once you have decided on a tour company you can confirm via email or phone to finalize the dates and cost of the trip. The tour companies will provide clear instructions for the next steps.

STEP 3: Get your Tourist Visa for China

Before you spend a single penny with any Tour Operators it is important to apply and receive a Chinese Tourist Visa from your local Chinese Embassy. An important thing to note while applying for the tourist visa is NOT to mention in your application that you will be visiting Tibet. The likelihood is that your visa application will get rejected. Make a sample itinerary of places in China and get a visa for the duration. Generally 30 day visa would be given.

STEP 4: Book Tickets & Pay Advance

Once your Chinese Visa is at hand, book you air/rail tickets online or through a travel agent. I strongly recommend the Qinghai-Tibetan Railway journey at least one way. Send in the details to the tour company you have already selected at least 20-25 days before your trip start date. At this stage the tour agency will demand advance (around 10-20%) which you can pay by various electronic means. Your trip is booked.

STEP 5: Receive your Tibet Travel Permit (TTP)

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Sample Tibet Travel Permit (TTP)

You will have to wait for a week or so before your tour company will send you your Tibet Travel Permit (TTP). TTP is required for you to board a flight or train to (Lhasa) Tibet. TTP is a must but depending on where you are going in Tibet, Alien’s Travel Permit (ATP) or Military Permit may be required.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

GO: Pack your bags and necessities and off you go

Pack your bags, get warm clothes, buy altitude sickness tablets and board your inbound train/flight. The roof of the world awaits you.

Disclaimer – Situation in Tibet changes almost every year. So please keep an eye on following links to know the latest:

How to Plan a Trip to TibetPlanning a trip to Tibet looks like an almost impossible task. With the many restrictions on foreign travel in Tibet, it can seem hard to be able to get around all the red tape that is required, for visas, permits, tour guides, etc. However, it really is not as hard to do as it may seem at first.

Thousands of foreign tourists travel to Tibet every year, and here at Explore Tibet, we are on hand to make sure that your journey to the roof of the world is planned out to the finest detail and goes without a hitch.

Travel to Tibet cannot be done independently and requires the use of a registered Tibetan tour operator. Explore Tibet is just such a tour operator, with ten years’ experience in the field of Tibetan travel for foreign tourists. We have planned hundreds of thousands of trips for our international clients and can help you to plan yours too.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Find a tour operator

A tour operator is a requirement for any trip to Tibet. Chinese regulations state that independent travel in Tibet is prohibited, and all foreign tourists must use a tour operator to plan and execute their trip, as well as providing the required tour guide, driver, and private vehicle. The tour operator is also the one that makes the applications for all the required permits for your tour.

Deciding on which tour operator to use can be a hard choice. This is where the internet comes in. Websites such as TripAdvisor and Lonely Planet are the top sites in the field of international tourism around the world and are a great resource for finding a good Tibetan tour operator. The sites work by allowing their members to post reviews of the companies that are listed in their databases as tour operators, travel agents, and local businesses from around the world.

How to Plan a Trip to TibetThese reviews are not computer generated, they are made by real people that have traveled where you want to go. The reviews are honest and reliable, and while there may be a few bad reviews on almost all of the sites, nobody is perfect, and even the best companies can get it a little wrong sometimes. By looking at the reviews that are available, you can get a good idea of how good the company is and whether the services they provide are adequate for your requirements.

Explore Tibet has been the recipient of the TripAdvisor Award for Excellence for several years now and is rated as one of the top Tibetan tour operators according to the customer reviews on the TripAdvisor website. They are also the top Tibetan tour operator listed in the Lonely Planet Guide to Tibet. Lonely Planet not only have a website with reviews of tourism businesses, they are the publisher of the premier travel guide for tourists around the world. So if you really want to know how good a company is, check out their TripAdvisor pages and the reviews on Lonely Planet.

How to Plan a Trip to TibetDecide on your itinerary (Where to visit)

The next obvious step, once you have decided that Explore Tibet can handle your trip well enough, is to plan the route you want to take around Tibet. This includes where you want to travel to, what places you want to see, and whether or not you want to visit Mount Everest. Here at Explore Tibet, we have professional and caring staff that can help you decide on your itinerary for the trip and make other suggestions as to what you might like to see in Tibet, based on your answers to their questions. All our staff are Tibetan and are experts in their fields, with a wealth of knowledge about the Tibetan plateau and the people and culture.

Once you have decided on your itinerary, our helpful and friendly staff will make sure you are constantly kept updated on the details and standing of your trip, including the applications for permits and how the applications are progressing. And they are always on hand to answer any questions you may have.

How to Plan a Trip to TibetWork out the best time to visit for you

Knowing when to go is half of the battle when planning a trip to another country, and especially if that country is on a different continent with different or unique weather systems. While Tibet is in Asia, it has a very different climate to every other Asian country that surrounds it. Lying on the high-altitude Tibetan plateau, with an average elevation of around 4,800 meters, the climate and weather in Tibet is unique.

For most people, traveling to Tibet is best done in the summer months, which are also the peak months for Tibetan tourism. The weather is at its warmest and while the plateau is subject to the southwest monsoon in Asia, there is actually very little rain and what does fall normally happens in the evenings and overnight. Summer is also the time when the oxygen content of the air is higher in Tibet, making acclimatization a little easier.

Spring and autumn are a great time to travel to Tibet, with pleasant temperatures and almost no rain at all. The skies are clear, and the sunshine makes the temperature feel warmer during the day, However, it can get very cold at night, so you should prepare warmer clothing for the evenings. It is also the best time for those wanting to trek around Mount Kailash or Mount Everest, or even in the Gama Valley, as the weather is perfect for high-altitude trekking.

Winter, despite what many people think, is also a good time to travel to Tibet, and it is really not as cold as you might think. Temperatures can get down to around minus 25 degrees in the most remote regions of Tibet at night, but for the most part, the temperatures during the day are pleasant, and it is actually possible to suffer from sunburn in the winter. And it is not all heavy snow and blocked roads in the winter. From December to January, it is still possible to visit Mount Everest, often with just a little snow on the ground.

After all of this is done, you can just sit back and let us handle all of the details of the tip, from your permits and passes for Tibet and the tickets to get into the various attractions you will be visiting to your hotel and guesthouse accommodation, your private driver, vehicle, and guide, and even your tickets for the train to Tibet from mainland China if you need them. All you have to do is travel to Tibet and enjoy your tour.

Neighboring Tibet, Chengdu is the best gateway to explore this mysterious land, to experience the Tibetan cultural, to observe the local people, and to appreciate the breathtaking natural scenery. If you are planning a trip from Chengdu to Tibet, you can get some inspiration from our article.

1. Choose the Best Time

Chengdu and Tibet have different weather conditions. Each season has its highlights. The best times to take a trip to Tibet from Chengdu are from May to June and from September to October.

The best times to visit Chengdu are from March to June and from September to November.

A summary of the weather in Chengdu might read “an early spring, a hot summer, a cool autumn, and a warm (relative to the surrounding areas) winter”. Learn more about Chengdu Weather.

The best time to visit Tibet is from May to September when there is a more comfortable temperature, averaging above 10°C, and higher oxygen content.

Most of Tibet experiences frost at least 6 months of the year and the highest lakes have ice from October to March. The weather varies a lot from region to region. Learn more about Tibet Weather.

2. Things to Do in Chengdu and Tibet

Chengdu and Tibet provide abundant activities for tourists ranging from culture, fun, relaxation, and history to adventure.

Things to Do in Chengdu

  • Join a Panda Keeper Program to interact closely with cute pandas.
  • Try a hot pot to discover the culture of Chengdu’s cuisine.
  • Wander along Jinli Ancient Street at night to see the Chinese-style buildings and lanterns.
  • Visit Wenshu Monastery if you are interested in the Buddhist culture.
  • Get a taste of the lazy local lifestyle by visiting People’s Park.
  • Read more

Things to Do in Tibet

  • Explore the Potala Palace, which is an iconic landmark in Tibet.
  • Make a circuit of Barkhor Street to get an insight into the Tibetan culture and beliefs.
  • Gaze at the beauty of Yamdrok Lake and Namtso – Tibet’s pristine landscapes.
  • Adventure into Everest Base Camp.
  • Read more

3. Consider Your Travel Duration

A basic tour of Chengdu and Tibet needs 8 days. You can extend your trip according to your schedule because Chengdu and Tibet are both worthy of in-depth exploration due to their rich tourism resources.

We suggest a 3-day visit in Chengdu so that you can experience the highlights there, such as pandas, Wenshu Monastery, and Jinli Ancient Street, at a leisurely travel pace.

If you are a panda lover or are interested in Chengdu’s surrounding cities, you can include one more day to have close contact with pandas, such as being their keeper, or go to Leshan to visit the Leshan Giant Buddha.

For a Tibet tour, you need at least 4 days. You can use the first day to have a good rest and adapt to the high altitude after your arrival.

During the remaining 3 days, you can visit the capital city, Lhasa, to see the Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street, Norbulingka, Sera Monastery, and Drepung Monastery.

You can extend your stay to explore Lhasa’s surroundings, such as Everest Base Camp, Yamdrok Lake, Karuola Glacier, and the Palcho Monastery. You can refer to our 8-Day Lhasa to Everest Base Camp Tour.

4. Choose Your Preferred Transportation

There are two ways for foreign tourists to travel from Chengdu to Tibet: by train and by airplane. We recommend taking a flight. The journey takes about 2½ hours.

Chengdu provides more than 10 direct flights to Lhasa daily. A flight ticket is easier to purchase than a train ticket, which is in high demand, especially in summer.

Taking a flight will make it easier for you to adapt to the altitude sickness in Tibet. A train journey from Chengdu to Lhasa takes about 36 hours.

Lack of rest on the train may make you prone to altitude sickness when you arrive in Lhasa and feel tired when you tour around. Learn more about How to Get from Chengdu to Tibet.

5. Consider the Accommodation in Chengdu and Tibet

Chengdu offers a range of hotels and you can easily find a nice hotel in one of the streets. It is not easy to decide where to stay for most foreign tourists, however, as it is probably their first time in Chengdu.

Chunxi Road and Tianfu Square are the most popular places to stay for foreign tourists because of the central location, convenient transportation, and better hotel facilities and services.

If you prefer a quiet environment, the area around Wenshu Monastery is a good choice. We offer a detailed guide on Where to Stay in Chengdu.

Tibet’s accommodation is not as good as Chengdu’s but Lhasa provides better accommodation than some remote regions, such as Everest and Ngari.

We suggest a hotel with a high star-rating, which also offers an oxygen supply. The areas near the Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple are good choices. Read our article introducing The Best Hotels in Tibet with Free Oxygen and Potala Views.

If you want us to help you book your hotels, feel free to tell us your requirements.

6. Apply for a Tibet Travel Permit

Due to Tibet’s political situation, foreign tourists cannot travel to Tibet alone and must apply for a Tibet Travel Permit. You have to find a China-based travel agency, like us, to help you do this as foreign tourists are not allowed to apply for Tibet permits independently.

Learn more about what you need to do if you want to apply for a Tibet Travel Permit.

Itineraries for Inspiration

Are you struggling to decide on a travel plan? Here, we have provided you with itineraries to help you get inspiration. Our tours can be customized according to your needs and interests.

  • 8-Day Chengdu and Lhasa Classic Tour: Suitable for a first-time visitor who seeks a tour containing the most important features of Chengdu and Lhasa: Pandas, Sichuan cuisine, holy temples and picturesque landscape.

What to know before visit Tibet?

The Tibet Autonomous Region is often considered as one of those bucket-list destinations that is a must-visit for ardent travelers in Asia. Known as the Roof of the World, Tibet lies on the world’s highest plateau, and is surrounded by the world’s highest mountains and mountain range. Lying at an average altitude of around 4,800 meters above sea level, this high-altitude land is one of the most unique locations on the planet. And if that is not enough to tempt you to visit, then the wealth of ancient Buddhist monasteries, lofty snow-clad mountains, beautiful crystal-clear lakes, and vast open prairies filled with unique plateau wildlife may just make you change your mind. There are some things that you need to know before considering a trip to the roof of the world, which can help make planning and executing this incredible journey much easier.

When is the best time to travel Tibet?

Tibet is a region that can be visited all year round, and the monumental number of things to see and do make it an ideal place for both summer and winter visits. Tibet has a typical sub-tropical plateau climate with four seasons, and is also a monsoon-affected region, lying directly between the northeast and southwest monsoon regions of Asia. Spring and autumn are the best times to visit for those that want to experience clear skies and half-decent weather, when the temperatures reach up as high as 12-15 degrees during the daytime, and drop only just below freezing at night. This is also the best time for trekking on the plateau for those with a taste for adventure.

Summer is the monsoon season in Tibet, but thanks to the shadow effect of the Himalayas, very little rain actually reaches the western end of the plateau. And even in the central and eastern areas, the rain usually comes in showers in the late afternoon and evening, and is not enough to slow you down on your exploration of this unique Buddhist land. Winter is not as bad as many people think either. While it can get extremely cold in some western and higher areas of the plateau, for most of the places you will visit on the standard tour, it is not too cold to travel. Temperatures can get down to around 5-6 degrees in some places, in Lhasa, the Tibetan capital, the average winter temperature ranges between 11 and 7 degrees during the day. And with bright sunny days for most of the winter, there is no better time to visit for those on a budget Tibet tour or to avoid the crowds of the peak season.

What documents are needed for travel to Tibet?

Tibet is a place where independent travel is not permitted, and all tourists to the plateau region must be on a pre-arranged tour with a registered Tibetan tour operator like Explore Tibet. And it is the tour operator that obtains the many documents that you will need to get into and around the region, with the exception of the Chinese Entry Visa for those entering from mainland China. This must be applied for in person from your local Embassy of the People’s Republic of China prior to booking your trip to Tibet, as it will be needed to apply for the other permits.

The Tibet Travel Permit is the main permit for travel to Tibet, and is obtained by us on your behalf once you have booked your tour. Using scanned color copies of your passport and visa (if entering from China), we will make the application with the Tibet Tourism Bureau in Lhasa, which can take up to 15-20 days. Once received, your permit will be forwarded to your hotel in China ready for your departure to Tibet.

For those traveling outside Lhasa, you will also need the Alien’s Travel Permit, for visiting the “unopened” areas of Tibet, and the Frontier Pass, for visiting the areas of Tibet close to the Chinese border with Nepal, including Mount Everest. For those intending to take a long trip to sacred Mount Kailash in Ngari Prefecture or visit the delightful countryside of Nyingchi, you will also need the Restricted Areas Permit. These are also obtained by us, and will be ready for you before you travel outside Lhasa.

For those entering from Nepal, we will obtain all the permits using just your passport, and your visa will be issued as a Chinese Group Visa once you reach the Nepali capital of Kathmandu. Our agent will meet you at your hotel when you arrive, and make the application for the visa on your behalf from the embassy in the city. Processing takes three working days, so you need to be in Nepal at least five days before your expected date of departure.

How to get to Tibet – by flight or by train?

There are two options for travel to Tibet for international travelers. You can take the flights from one of many cities in China that offer direct flights to Lhasa, the Tibetan capital, or from the Nepali airport in Kathmandu, or you can take the train from one of seven gateway cities to Tibet in mainland China.

Flights depart from more than two dozen airports across China, including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, Chongqing, Xi’an, and many more. The cost and travel time of the flights varies depending on where you are departing from, but the most popular departure locations for flights to Lhasa are from Beijing and Chengdu.

There are also flights to the famous Lhasa Gonggar International Airport from Nepal’s Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. AS the only international airport in the world with direct flights to Tibet, Kathmandu is a popular departure point for tourists to the plateau. These flights range in price depending on the season, but take around 90 minutes to reach Lhasa, crossing directly above the summit of Mount Everest on their flight plan.

Trains to Lhasa depart from seven cities across China, including Guangzhou, Shanghai, Beijing, Chengdu, Chongqing, Lanzhou, and Xining. These unique trains are fitted with oxygen systems to combat altitude sickness on the journey up to the heady heights of the plateau, and take from 22 to 55 hours to reach the Tibetan capital railway station. Xining is the closest departure point for Lhasa, and is the start of the high-altitude Qinghai Tibet Railway, the highest railway in the world. Sleeper cabins are available for the trip to Lhasa, and are comfortable and inexpensive compared to flying.

Altitude Sickness in Tibet

Altitude sickness is a major concern when traveling to Lhasa, as it lies at an elevation of 3,656 meters above sea level. For those coming from most of mainland China and Kathmandu, that is an increase of more than 3,000 meters in one go. Despite some myths on traveling to Tibet by train, the oxygen pumped into the carriages after passing Golmud on the way to the plateau usually prevents any acclimatization on the long journey.

Once you reach Lhasa, you will need to acclimatize to the higher altitude and thinner atmosphere, and your body will take a couple of days to adjust and get used to having less oxygen per breath than it is used to. This is not dangerous, and as long as you take plenty of rest, avoid alcohol, smoking, coffee, and strenuous exercise, and remain hydrated as much as you can, there should not be any problems with acclimatizing to the altitude. Most tours take a couple of days in Lhasa to view the sights, and this is a good enough time to allow you to adjust before traveling to other places outside the capital.

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Why Great Tibet Tour?

Great Tibet Tour has a team of Tibet travel experts with the majority being local born Tibetans who handpick the best things to do in destinations around Tibet. As a recommended Tibet travel agency by Lonely Planet, ever since 2005, we’ve designed and operated tours in Tibet from standard Lhasa Tours to the adventurous Tibet Trekking Tours. To ensure the tours you book at Great Tibet Tour deliver the type of travel experience we know you want to have – a once in a lifetime experience – we’ve sought out the most reputable and trustworthy Tibetan guides, hotels, restaurants, and transportation companies throughout Tibet. This comprehensive insider access possessed only by locals. We live here; we know Tibet! Read more.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Great Tibet Tour is recommended by Lonely Planet Tibet, the 8th edition, 2011

Top Deals

As the leading local Tibet tour operator based in Lhasa officially licensed by the government, we design journeys of comfort and authenticity to the most amazing destinations in this highland. To meet tourists’ satisfaction, we always focus on the customized Private Tours and classical Small Group Tours. Every year, more than 3,000 clients have traveled with us and enjoyed the magic and mystery of this holy land. The following top deals are just from the choices by the excellent feedback from our travelers. Just contact us and travel to the third pole of the world without going around in circles.

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How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Lhasa – Gyantse – Shigatse – EBC – Shigatse – Lhasa

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How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

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Traveling Tibet is a trip unlike any other. But, there is a lot to sort out before you set off. Whether to travel to Tibet by train or airplane, where to go and when, and how to obtain travel documents are just a few considerations.

There are many other things to know when planning a Tibet tour. Moreover, few first-time visitors are even aware of most of those. In this article, our travel experts share tips for planning your first visit to the Land of Snows.

Decide What You Want to Visit in Tibet

Autonomous Region of Tibet is vast. And you will find tourist points of interest spread throughout the Tibetan plateau.

Lhasa, the capital of the Land of Snows, and Shigatse are the main cities, featuring noteworthy attractions. Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and Barkhor Street are top tourist attractions of Lhasa. Shigatse prides on Tashilhunpo Monastery, Shigatse Dzong, and Summer Palace of Panchen Lamas, in particular.

Allocate several days for a meaningful visit to both destinations. If you arrive straight from lower parts of our planet, add a few more days to acclimatize to the altitude difference.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Best Time To Visit Tibet

Sacred lakes of Namtso, Yamdrok, and Manasarovar, Mount Kailash, and Everest Base Camp are some other key tourist destinations. There are also many historic Tibetan monasteries located around the cities and farther away.

Also, trekking throughout the countryside reveals diverse scenery and unique flora and fauna. Wherever you go, the world’s highest region will surprise you with something.

Therefore, careful time management is essential for making the most of your Tibet trip. For a classical tour including Lhasa, Shigatse, and Everest Base Camp, plan around a week. When proceeding from EBC to Mount Kailash and Lake Manasarovar for a trek, add several days at least.

Travelers remaining in Lhasa and visiting Namtso and Yamdrok lakes typically need up to a week. In general, the best times for a trip to Tibetan plateau are the second half of spring and the first part of autumn.

Schedule a Tibet Tour With a Tibetan Travel Agency

Local regulations prevent individual travels in the Tibetan plateau. Hence, you need to book a group or private tour via a travel agency. Before getting in touch with a local tour operator, most tourists need to secure a Chinese visa.

The next step is acquiring the Tibet Travel Permit through Tibetan agency. We strongly advise that you hire a reputable tour operator, such as Tibet Vista. There are many agencies in the market whose professionalism is questionable.

Therefore, do research, determine which agencies are long in business, and evaluate their clients’ overall satisfaction. With the right agency, you receive valuable insights, both general and personal, when discussing the details.

Best Way to Get to Tibet: Train vs Flight vs Overland

By many, traveling by Tibet train is the best way of arriving in the Land of Snows. Trains commuting from Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, and other main cities of China to Lhasa feature oxygen supply. Also, travelers can plan breaks along the way to adapt to the elevation gradually.

Flights offer short travel times when compared to Tibet train. However, most travelers need to deal with altitude sickness symptoms upon arrival when choosing this option. You can board airplanes flying to the Tibetan capital in Kathmandu, Nepal, and major Chinese cities.

Traveling overland from Nepal is a scenic trip. Still, taking this route requires careful planning due to different time zones and road conditions on Nepalese and Chinese sides. Plus, you will traverse higher regions of the autonomous region before arriving in lower, quite the opposite from traveling by Tibet train.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Have Some Ideas for Accommodation and Dining

When discussing the details of your Tibet tour with an agency, you should have a few things in mind. Since most places are far above the line where the level of oxygen drops, you should book accommodation in lower parts of your destination. Even booking a room at the lowest level of a hotel makes a difference.

Lhasa and Shigatse have hotels with rooms suitable for various types of travelers. In the countryside, accommodation units are more on the basic side, including those in Everest Base Camp.

Also, the local diet typically evolves around highland barley and dietary products and meat of yak. You may find these quite different from what you usually eat. Nepalese, Indian, and western foods are available in Lhasa.

Pack the Right Gear for Your Trip to Tibet

The region features higher solar radiation from lower parts of the world, so you should bring sunscreen, sunglasses, and garments suitable for protection. Furthermore, bring medicaments helping with altitude sickness, whose main symptoms are headache and nausea among others. Also, bring a high-quality sleeping bag and layered clothing since different regions feature various climates.

All you need to know about Your first Tibet Trip

Visiting Tibet is a rewarding experience introducing a unique culture, nature, and gastronomy. Many travelers arrive in Tibet by train, which, if planned right, allows more convenient accommodating to elevation compared to other options. By taking care of the essentials mentioned in this article, you will have a great Tibet tour you would wish to repeat soon.

    July 20, 2020 July 24, 2020 NormanCulture, Destinations, Safety

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Time goes and things will be changed, so are followed the rules and regulations of any circumstance. As a normal phenomenon upon the flood of tourists throughout years, many kept dreaming plans in each individual getting somewhere with much excited in aspiration. If your travel destination will be, Tibet, then you must think about how to travel to Tibet as a first question. Still, travel information about a particular place or thing does make any means of requisition. If you are planning to travel to Tibet in the near future I hope this will help you a happy Tibet experience. A read list ensures you get prepared and prepared to unlock great memories!

A Sudden Thought of How to Travel to Tibet

Have you ever heard about Tibet? Are you confused about how to travel to Tibet? This question might be the foremost for any one who is going to get in and yet a successive line of questions has lain next to you. Why! Don’t you expect your Tibet tour must be a dream travel? The answer is yes and could be! Because Tibet is a land of mystery and you can think more beyond your imagination. The richest cultural depth and the unexpected last adventures may help drawing an extra consideration of your fanciness. Be the best being best at ticking your answers correctly in the next few minutes. I am actually not trying to get you in feared but it always stick with first things to the first. Try to read another post about Travel in Tibetan Areas, a five minutes break for looking into the solid information.

Choose Right Time, Right Source, Right Services to Travel in Tibet.

Here, I would like jot a brief paragraph about “When, why and how to travel to Tibet? This question has two parts, one is about adjusting the best time in you and the other is to see what is the best time to travel in Tibet by contacting a responsible Tibet local travel agency based in Tibet.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

You exactly know when is the best time for yourself like a week or wishes that you have at spending the time in somewhere on the Tibetan plateau. If you could finally decide and about to do a classic Tibet tour within the time you are free. What I suggest you is not recommended, do not rely merely on words of mouth for some information. Just browse a reliable Tibet travel agency in search results, state your time of enter and exit Tibet. This also wouldn’t really help Tibet tour operators in order to meet your wish and best time adjustment. Try to tell them more about your plan and it is better if you got information from any recent source of medias like on Internet, from friends, on newspaper. Eventually, this little knowledge about Tibet may not help you to get a better-customised Tibet tour. Ask questions like when, why and how to travel in finding the current possibilities you might have it. Right! You don’t wish your tour would end unsatisfactorily. There may have new formalities being charged and removed in the most recent times which yet unknown by the sources that you believe in and it is also possible your nationality is being permissible or rejected to book a tour to Tibet. How much the way you think important of your tour is as same important at choosing a travel agency in Tibet. Read from forums and also read reviews of a specific travel company that you want go with. Investigate for a successful travel before you go, as it is also depend on preparation. What I mean? You always have the right time and right plan unless to travel in Tibet in the mean time for a right offer, right information, right services etc.

You will get value of a product based on how much you have spent time and effort. Times and effort are equal to an amount of money in substitute. Whether you spent money, time or effort it will define you the same value as you paid them out of you. But, to this modern world they are not important in case of abnormal and unreliable services. The only thing is that you didn’t get what you expect. What you want to do? If you are traveling to some specific area and need a reliable Tibet tour company, you cannot stop at thinking about a right service. Write them email and even call them in person to discuss a complete of program, which might start in the coming months. Check whether they are on time responding with your questions. You may ask any question regarding the trip.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

The productive way of a successful tour is depending one who is in charge with the tour you are going to book with. This could be any local travel agency in Tibet and by further contact in emails and calls make you know the person mentally to decide your action before booking a trip with him/her. A condition of a service is based on the response of travel agency in charge.

During the 2018 travel season family friendly Tibet travel has been a popular way for traveling families to enjoy an exotic adventure packed with enriching cultural activities that can be fun for all ages. As the final months of the peak travel season roll around, many are planning to take advantage of the remaining hospitable weather. To help travelers get started with planning Tibet tour, Tibet Ctrip Travel Service-TCTS (http://www.tibetctrip.com) discusses some family friendly culture focused tours available during 2018 and 2019.

  • Tibet Culture Cradle Journey: The 6 day tour begins in Lhasa where the travel group will enjoy an introduction to Tibetan culture and history. Potala Palace and Jokhang Temple are typically first up on the itinerary followed by some time for exploring Barkhor Bazaar, all fantastic places to learn and watch every day Tibetan life in action. Before leaving Lhasa on the fourth day the Tibet tour also visits Norbulingka (summer palace of Dalai Lamas), the Tibet museum, along with Sera and Drepung Monasteries. Yarlung Valley, cradle of Tibetan civilization, is up next on the itinerary. Over two days travelers visit sites in and around Tsetang such as Yungbulagang Palace, Tramdruk Monastery, and Samye Monastery.
  • Tibet Culture and Landscape Trip: This 7 day tour of Tibet covers many of Lhasa’s most famous sites but heads in a different direction after a couple days. The travel group will make a day trip to the beautiful Lake Namtso, one of the largest in all of Tibet and China, second only to Lake Qinghai. Along the way there will be plenty of opportunity to enjoy view of wide-open grasslands filled with nomads and their herds of animals. The group will enjoy sightseeing in Gyantse and Shigatse, Tibet’s second largest city, over the following two days.

These culture focused Tibet tours provide a get away from it all experience that imparts upon travelers knowledge of one of world’s most fascinating and mysterious places. Tours by TCTS include everything from travel permits and hotels to guides and transportation, giving travelers the opportunity to forget about the details and enjoy their trip. With only a few months left in the 2018 Tibet winter tour season is the time to plan a tour!

The first event that comes into our mind when we think of Tibet is the Saga Dawa Festival season. This is the best time of the year to visit Tibet if you are fan of learning the culture and people of the places that you travel to in their true essence.

Travelers can visit a number of monasteries throughout Tibet. In fact, if you are undertaking the Mount Kailash Kora or the Mansarovar Yatra, then you would be stopping at a number of much monasteries. Be sure to explore the Potala Palace, which is a huge treasure house of Tibetan history and culture.

Visit Jokhang temple, the most sacred temple of the Tibetans. Barkhor Street, the area around the Jokhang Temple, is a perfect shopping destination and the perfect place to stock up on gifts and souvenirs.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Lake Yamdrok is a large, freshwater lake that is one of four sacred lakes in Tibet (the others being Lhamo La-tso, Mantso, and Manasarovar). It is located about 110km from Lhasa, and is fed by melted ice. Yamdroktso Lake is also a large habitat for migrating birds. And, it’s another place of pilgrimage – a circumambulation of the lake takes around 7 days. The Samding Monastery sits on hill on a peninsula projecting into the lake. Photographers take note: the Khamba La pass observatory is the perfect place for shooting the lake. You’ll have the twist of the water surrounded by mountains. If you would like to photograph the water in a V shape, be sure to stop at the Gampa Pass (as seen, below).

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

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How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Have you been to Tibet? Do you have any tips to add?

This is going to be a pretty short post since there are only a few ways to cut costs for Tibet travel, which is expensive, plain and simple.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

The high costs of travel to the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR) is due in large part to the government rules requiring you have to have a guide and driver for each day that you are there. (Though for certain low-level activities in Lhasa itself you can get away with just a guide.) In spring of 2016, the already-expensive prices rose substantially higher due to a new government policy centralizing all the tourism vehicles.

So the prices are high. What can a traveler to do cut costs?

  1. Join a group: The single most effective way to bring your expenses down is to join a group for travel in the TAR. If you can form a group on your own, great. If you are traveling solo, our agents can help form groups for 4-day Lhasa Highlights, 6-day Cultural Highlights (including Lhasa, Shigatse and Gyantse), Everest Base Camp, and Mt. Kailash tours. (You can inquire here for a group trip.)
  2. Travel in low season: Trips from November to mid-February are going to be cheapest. It’s cold in winter and you have some limitations about where you can travel, but winter is actually a good time to travel in the TAR. See this post on 5 Reasons Winter is the Best Time to Visit Tibet.
  3. Outside the Tibetan Autonomous Region (TAR), travel with a guide but no driver: If you are traveling in non-TAR areas of Kham and Amdo, you can hire a guide to go with you on public transportation. Obviously, this is a tougher trip than if you have a driver, but you can definitely save money this way, and see more of the local culture. Actually, you can technically travel without a guide too, in the non-restricted and non-TAR areas of Kham and Amdo, but we don’t recommend it. Yolanda has traveled all over the world on her own, but Tibet is one place she wouldn’t do it, for multiple reasons. (Inquire here for a guide for Kham/Amdo.)
  4. Sign up 3 months in advance for Early Bird Discount: Some of our recommended agents offer a 5% discount when travelers confirm a group tour at least 3 months in advance.
  5. Share a room to avoid the Single Room Supplement: Many agents charge a supplemental fee for travelers staying solo in a room on a group tour. The fee can really add up so especially on longer trips like Mount Kailash, you can save hundreds of dollars by opting to share a room with a fellow traveler.
  6. Take a short trip: The very least expensive trip we know of is a 4-day Lhasa highlights group tour. Clearly, shorter trips cost less, also in Kham and Amdo, so if you really, really want to see Tibet, but you’re low on cash (or even time), inquire about a Lhasa highlights tour, or ask here for a short Kham/Amdo trip.

Our honest recommendation about costs and prices, though, is to recognize that it is going to cost a lot, and to save your vacation time and money so that you can afford to go for at least 10 days, and hopefully 2-4 weeks. Tibet is a magnificent country and the farther out you get from the main areas, the richer and more authentic your experience becomes, but it will take time to get out there.

Personally, we set aside $200 every month by automatic deposit into a special savings account that is for travel, for a total of $2400 a year. We pretty much forget about it, and then every couple of years, we have enough for a decent-sized trip. If you can set aside even $50 a month, it will build in no time!

Plus, if you’re someone who can use credit cards responsibly, you can build up free flights over time by using credit cards that give points. There is a huge amount of info about how to do this online.

Updated on February 9, 2020. First published on July 6, 2016.

Your Tibet travel advisors, Lobsang and Yolanda

Most people who want to go to Tibet don’t know how to get there or who to trust for help. We’re Lobsang Wangdu and Yolanda O’Bannon, and we help make Tibet travel more simple, safe and ethical so you can feel peace of mind about your trip. Learn more about us and YoWangdu here.

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Tibet Travel Planning Guide

  1. How to decide where to go
    • What Does T.A.R. mean?
    • Helping you Choose Where to Go
  2. How to choose when to go
    • At a Glance: When to Travel to Lhasa
    • Chart: Month-by-month breakdown
  3. Choosing a Tibetan agent
    • Choosing the right agent
  4. Prevent Altitude Sickness
    • How to Avoid Altitude Sickness!
    • Checklist: Altitude Sickness Prevention
  5. Learn About Tibet
    • Learn More About Tibet Before You Go
  6. Manage trip costs and budgets
    • Actual Prices for Tibet Trips
    • How to Cut Costs on a Trip to Tibet
    • How Much Does it Cost?
  7. Manage Visas and Permits
    • “Tibet Visa”
    • Tibet Travel Permit
  8. Prepare for a Healthy Trip
    • Video: Consult a Travel Doctor
  9. Reserve international flights
    • Tips for Booking Your International Flight
  10. Book Domestic Flights and Trains
    • Booking Flights and Trains to Tibet
  11. Book Hotels in China and Tibet
    • How to Book Hotels
  12. Apply for Chinese Visa
    • How to Apply for a Chinese Visa
    • Video: How to Apply for a Chinese Visa through an Agency
  13. Consider getting Travel Insurance
    • Travel Insurance
  14. Prep and Pack
    • What to Pack for a Trip to Tibet
    • Packing List
  15. Bonuses
    • Buddhist Etiquette Cheat Sheet
    • Practical Guide to Tibetan Buddhism

Free: Connect to a Reliable Tibet Travel Agent

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Request a free introduction to a reliable Tibetan-owned travel agent

Agents arrange your whole Tibet trip, including permits and (if you wish) train tickets.

We love and trust our Tibetan agent partners, who we have worked with for over 5 years.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Please tell me how to plan a train trip to lahsa .i stay in singapore. Covering buddist places tibet and visiting katmandu can add to our please . Trip can be 5- 8 days

4 answers

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Visitor need a Tibetan Visa to visit Lhasa. I got my Tibetan visa done by an agent called Tibet Vista, got it done very fast and professionally.

Train from Chengdu is 36hrs guest you might need to take flight to save your time, do get diamox from the doctor to help you to breath better in the trip.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Hi Lakshmi! What country are your from? I think you need visa and all those permits to Lhasa. And Kathmandu and Tibet is 2 different countries ))

For Kathmandu you may buy plane ticket and go there. First check everything about Nepal visa for you.

For Tibet – find travel agencies who provide tours in Tibet and choose tour that you like. Agency will provide all permits you need.

I know that some train is available for Lhasa but I did not do train. In any case you need visa and permits. Better to ask some local agency.

I am not sure that I answer your question. If you want to ask something else ask. I may answer if I know answer.

    March 5, 2018 August 4, 2019 NormanCulture, Destinations, Reviews, Safety

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Planning a successful Tibet trip may, at first, seem an arduous task. The paperwork appears to have been invented simply to confuse. Each place on your list to visit has at least two different names and five different spellings. You are traveling with stubborn friends. You wish you had all the information began the process. Why are maps so hard to find? And who likes dealing with consulates anyways?

Three words in case you are worried about any potential headaches: it’s worth it. Though no plan is bullet proof, we’d like to share a couple of tips with you that can ease the process and make sure your trip goes smoothly.

1. Thoroughly examine a map of the People’s Republic of China.

Don’t confuse yourself with guidebooks and too much online research just yet. First, get a map of China and read it closely. Notice where national roads and railways are and aren’t. Better still, if you can get an administrative map, read the names of the provinces and prefectures to find out which areas are Tibetan cultural areas.

Notice that the area labeled “Tibet” is the only area you need a Tibet permit to enter. Many travelers get tripped up on this one, especially if they are planning trips to the Tibetan regions of Kham and Amdo: not all of Tibet is included in the area that says Tibet on the map!

If the places you want to travel Sichuan, Qinghai, Gansu, or Yunnan, you won’t be needing a Tibet permit, just a valid Chinese Tourist Visa! If you are feeling wary of traveling on an escorted tour, visiting Tibetan areas outside the Tibet Autonomous Region is a great option.

2. Too much is better than too little for planning a Tibet trip

If you are traveling to the Tibet Autonomous Region, you must list every destination you intend to visit when you first apply for your permit. Let’s say, for example, that you are considering a visit to Everest Base Camp but haven’t made up your mind. Better to include it in your itinerary as you can subtract sites if you are not feeling well, but will not be allowed to add sites after the permit has been issued!

3. Follow the visa advices your travel agency gives you!

To planning a Tibet tour, sometimes people have trouble getting a Chinese Tourist Visa before they even begin their permit process. If your Tibet travel agency tells you it’s better not to mention that you are going to Tibet when you submit your paperwork…heed their words! You aren’t lying. It’s just the crazy procedural way things work. Focus on getting your visa and the permit follows upon arrival to China. Telling a Chinese consulate that you plan to travel to Tibet sometimes leads to outright visa rejection because you do not have the necessary permits (even if you say you plan to get them). Yes, it’s ridiculous, but be ready to roll with it!

Many rules are subject to change on a whim and its safest to assume that whoever you have helping you on the other end knows what they’re doing. Decisions in China are often subject to personal connections, an official’s mood, and other human variables that are just as random as the weather. Remember that the system is different from your home country, even and especially how people relate to planning a Tibet tour and deadlines, and try not to let the process stress you!

4. Take a trip to the doctor.

Before you depart, it might be a good idea to take a Tibet trip to the doctor, especially since you will be traveling at high altitude. If you have any previous health conditions, check in to make sure they will not affect your Tibet trip. Even if you don’t have previous health conditions, going in for a checkup can alert you to conditions you may have known about (like high blood pressure or blood clots).

5. Go with an open heart and an open mind.

Many travellers have a romanticised image of Tibet as a secluded land of monks, inaccessible and untouched by the modern world. In reality, Tibet has a long history of trade and exchange with its neighbouring countries. Tibetan pop music exists alongside traditional songs, and young people here dress much the same as young people in other parts of the world. Monks can be seen driving cars and using cellphones because Tibetan monastic traditions do not require total separation or seclusion from the outside world (except in some forms of retreat).

It is important to remember that How to Plan a Trip to TibetTibet and Tibetan people are not part of a living museum, but a living, breathing culture. Buddhists have fought wars too, lamas are not above human emotions, and many people dream of seeing the world; just like you! Looking beyond what we expect to see can help us appreciate a deeper type of beauty and ensure that we have a richer travel experience. Determining pre-departure that one will travel with their ears open is the best planning a budget Tibet tour anyone could do!

A Trip to Tibet & Nepal leads to Come. Take a step back in time and join us on this enriching, non-trekking journey for an eye-opening look into traditions, Historical and cultures far removed from those in the West.

Journey beyond cosmopolitan Kathmandu to holy Tibet – ‘the roof of the world’. Uncover the world’s most holy Hindu temple, the world’s highest monastery and the tallest mountain and enlightening Buddhist stupas.

A trip to Tibet & Nepal covers the fascinating medieval architecture, scattered in the Durbar Squares and features a spectacular roller-coaster ride down into the Kathmandu valley, Lalitpur & Bhaktapur as well as Breathtaking Himalayan views, the beautiful lake city of Pokhara, jungle safari in Chitwan national park. The trip of Tibet would take you through friendship highway from Kodari till Lhasa overland. Travel lovers can explore the different outstanding landscape, such as high plateau views in Tibet and great valley scenery in Nepal.

You will be passing through high passes, you can see the spectacular view of the Mount Everest which gives you an incomparable experience of the Himalayan country.Visit old & famous Monasteries like Tashilumpu as well as explore cultural attraction in Shigatse, Khumbu in Gyantse & you will tour the major monuments, including the legendary gold-roofed, thousand-room Potala Palace in Lhasa. The trip to the Himalaya countries including Tibet and Nepal is, like through the Space Channel, an unforgettable memory for those travelers.

There are 2 ways to get to A Trip to Tibet & Nepal. The first is to travel overland from Kathmandu to Tibet. From Kathmandu, the Tibet border is about 115 kilometers north along the Araniko Highway, which connects Kathmandu to the border town of Kodari. Kodari is the last town on the Nepal side. From Kodari, the Tibet (China) border is just a couple hundred meters away. There are daily buses from Kathmandu to Kodari or you can contact plan holidays Travel agency in Kathmandu arrange a private vehicle to take you along this scenic road and another is Lhasa Kathmandu flight.

How to Plan Tibet Cycling Tour

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Tibet Travel Guide

  • Destinations to Tibet
  • Everest Base Camp Travel Tips
  • How to Get to Tibet
  • How to Travel in Tibet
  • Keep Healthy in Tibet
  • River Rafting Tips in Tibet
  • Shopping Tips in Tibet
  • Things to Do in Tibet
  • Tibet Cycling Tips
  • Tibet Travel Tools
  • Tibet Trekking Tips
  • Tibet Winter Travel Tips
  • Tips Before Traveling to Tibet
  • Travel from Tibet to Nepal
  • Why Travel to Tibet
  • Accommodation
  • Administrative Divisions
  • Attractions
  • Climate
  • Culture
  • Dining
  • Education
  • Festivals and Activities
  • Maps
  • Overview
  • Photos
  • Transportation
  • Travel Tips
  • 8 Days Yushu Horse Racing Festival Tour
  • 6 Days Central Tibet Culture Small Group Tour
  • 14 Days Mt. Everest Adventure Tour from Beijing by Train
  • 15 Days Tibet-Xinjiang Overland Tour from Lhasa to Kashgar
  • 17 Days Sichuan-Yunnan Overland Tour from Chengdu to Kunming
  • 2 Days Namtso Lake Private Tour from Lhasa
  • 6 Days Lhasa and Lake Namtso Small Group Tour
  • 15 Days Tibet Mount Everest Advance Base Camp Trekking Adventure Tour [6340M]

Tips Before Travel

Bring copies of your passport

Don’t assume you’re restricted to the main hubs of Beijing and Shanghai, our tours can start from any city.

Register with your embassy

For your safety, please register with the Embassy.

Always have local cash

Exchange some local currency for your trip

Our Team

Customize a Trip

Start planning your tailor-made holiday to China by contacting one of our specialists. Once enquired, you’ll get a response within 0.5

Why Travel with Us

Latest News

Tibetan New Year celebrated without gathering, celebration events
Tibet’s Nyingchi discourages tourists amid virus control
Tibetans quietly celebrate traditional festival amid epidemic
All coronavirus-infected patients discharged in China’s plateau province
Tibet aids epidemic fight in Hubei

Contact Info

59 Jiangsu Road, Chengguan District, Chengguan, Lhasa, China

Mobile (24 Hours): +86- 18088243690 WhatsApp: +86- 18088243690 Wechat/QQ: 99707279

Daily: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sunday: Closed

Copyright © 2015-2018 WordPress Leaf. All rights reserved

How to Plan Tibet Motorcycle Tour

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Tibet Travel Guide

  • Destinations to Tibet
  • Everest Base Camp Travel Tips
  • How to Get to Tibet
  • How to Travel in Tibet
  • Keep Healthy in Tibet
  • River Rafting Tips in Tibet
  • Shopping Tips in Tibet
  • Things to Do in Tibet
  • Tibet Cycling Tips
  • Tibet Travel Tools
  • Tibet Trekking Tips
  • Tibet Winter Travel Tips
  • Tips Before Traveling to Tibet
  • Travel from Tibet to Nepal
  • Why Travel to Tibet
  • Accommodation
  • Administrative Divisions
  • Attractions
  • Climate
  • Culture
  • Dining
  • Education
  • Festivals and Activities
  • Maps
  • Overview
  • Photos
  • Transportation
  • Travel Tips
  • 15 Days Beijing, Xi’an, Tibet and Nepal Classic Tour by Train
  • 14 Days Mt. Everest Adventure Tour from Beijing by Train
  • 19 Days China Small Group Tour with Yunnan and Tibet Impression
  • 7 Days Tibet Adventure Tour to Everest Base Camp
  • 13 Days Tibet Kailash Pilgrimage Tour from Kathmandu
  • 10 Days Tibet Motorbike Tour with Mount Everest
  • 8 Days Tibet Cycling Tour from Lhasa to Namtso Lake
  • 21 Days Tibet-Nepal Cycling Tour from Lhasa to Kathmandu

Tips Before Travel

Bring copies of your passport

Don’t assume you’re restricted to the main hubs of Beijing and Shanghai, our tours can start from any city.

Register with your embassy

For your safety, please register with the Embassy.

Always have local cash

Exchange some local currency for your trip

Our Team

Customize a Trip

Start planning your tailor-made holiday to China by contacting one of our specialists. Once enquired, you’ll get a response within 0.5

Why Travel with Us

Latest News

Tibetan New Year celebrated without gathering, celebration events
Tibet’s Nyingchi discourages tourists amid virus control
Tibetans quietly celebrate traditional festival amid epidemic
All coronavirus-infected patients discharged in China’s plateau province
Tibet aids epidemic fight in Hubei

Contact Info

59 Jiangsu Road, Chengguan District, Chengguan, Lhasa, China

Mobile (24 Hours): +86- 18088243690 WhatsApp: +86- 18088243690 Wechat/QQ: 99707279

Daily: 9:00 am – 6:00 pm
Sunday: Closed

Copyright © 2015-2018 WordPress Leaf. All rights reserved

It’s well known that there are rich tourist resources in Tibet that make people from all over the world try to visit Tibet in person. Among those famous spots, Mt. Everest must be listed in Top Three. According to our years of working experience, more than 80% of the travelers visit Tibet because of Everest. So, let’s tell you something important about this highest peak on earth to help you plan an Everest Base Camp Tour.

Many people may don’t know why it’s named Everest. Actually, there are three names based on different areas. In China, we call it Qomolangma, while people call it Sagarmatha in Nepal. For the rest of the world, Everest is more popular as its English name. Qomolangma is from the Tibetan language, which means “the mother god of the universe”. Nepali language Sagarmatha means “the goddess of the sky”. And Everest, because of a British surveyor-general of India in the 19th century, George Everest, who was responsible for surveying the Himalayas.

Located on the border between China’s Tibet and Nepal, Mt. Everest belongs to the Asian Himalayan Ranges. Its accurate location is latitude 27 59′ N longitude 86 56′ E. There is no spring, summer or autumn, but only winter in Mt. Everest due to the special geographical position. It’s snow-capped all year round. So, you can see it from hundreds of kilometers away, like a shining silver pyramid. During the past centuries, Mt. Everest was like the Muses to inspire thousands of artists for their works. Thus, people started to know its extreme height and majestic landscape. What’s more, it attracted Buddhists come to worship as well because Everest is a sacred mountain in Buddhism. Before the climbing, Tibetan people will burn Tibetan incense firstly. After praying for a while, the short rite will end with leaving some offers to the gods. Tibetan people believe they will be blessed in this way, and the climb will be safe.

Up to now, the newest height of Mt. Everest is 8,844 meters (29,016 feet) above the sea level. People never stopped trying to conquer it but most of them failed until 1953, Edmund Hillary, a British adventurer, and Tenzing Norgay, a Nepalese Sherpa mountaineer, the two succeeded to reach the summit of Everest for the first time in human’s history. Explorers seemed to be cheered up by them, after that, more and more people started to get close to Everest no matter how hard it was. It’s not only about the technical difficulty, but also the lack of oxygen, strong winds and freezing clod which could kill people on the mountain.

Among the number of routes to climb Mt. Everest, there are famous two. One is the Northeast Ridge Route from Tibet, China, another one is the Southeast Ridge Route from Nepal. By contrast, the latter route is easier than the former one. That’s why the professional mountaineers used to choose to climb Everest from Nepal. But for the normal people who just want to see Everest, an Everest Base Camp Tour from Tibet is more suitable. Because if you visit Everest from Tibet, you can start from Lhasa, the capital city of Tibet Autonomous Region, and then Shigatse, the second-largest city in Tibet. At last, get to the Everest Camp area. Along the tourist route, you could visit many must-see tourist attractions, like Potala Palace, the landmark of Tibet; Jokhang Temple, the center of Tibetan Buddhism; Yamdroktso Lake, one of the top three holy lakes in Tibet; Rongbuk Monastery (5,100 meters, 16,732 feet), the highest monastery in the world, and so on. Most important of all, you could get the best view of Mt. Everest from Rongbuk Monastery, which could not be better for those who cannot reach the summit of Everest but also desire to get close to Mt. Everest.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Please tell me how to plan a train trip to lahsa .i stay in singapore. Covering buddist places tibet and visiting katmandu can add to our please . Trip can be 5- 8 days

4 answers

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Visitor need a Tibetan Visa to visit Lhasa. I got my Tibetan visa done by an agent called Tibet Vista, got it done very fast and professionally.

Train from Chengdu is 36hrs guest you might need to take flight to save your time, do get diamox from the doctor to help you to breath better in the trip.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Hi Lakshmi! What country are your from? I think you need visa and all those permits to Lhasa. And Kathmandu and Tibet is 2 different countries ))

For Kathmandu you may buy plane ticket and go there. First check everything about Nepal visa for you.

For Tibet – find travel agencies who provide tours in Tibet and choose tour that you like. Agency will provide all permits you need.

I know that some train is available for Lhasa but I did not do train. In any case you need visa and permits. Better to ask some local agency.

I am not sure that I answer your question. If you want to ask something else ask. I may answer if I know answer.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

The railroad to Lhasa, the capital of Tibet was completed in 2001. It became the highest railroad in the world going over the passes at above 5,000 meters. The section of a railroad connecting China and Lhasa was further extended to Shigatse in 2014.

The train to Tibet starts climbing above 2000 meters after Xining, the capital of Qinghai province. And the highest and most interesting part of the railroad begins shortly after trains are passing Golmud. If you are taking the train to Tibet to see the Northern Tibet, it is better to book a train arriving in Lhasa in the evening. In that way, you can spend most of the daytime enjoying spectacular views of the Tibetan plateau.

All Tibet trains are high-speed trains, however, they are covering such a large distance, that a trip from most cities will take you at least 30 hours. You will be rewarded with splendid views on the Tibetan far Eastern and Northern territories.

Oxygen Supply on a Train

Trains to Tibet go over several high passes, there is a system pumping supplemental oxygen on all trains going to Tibet. When you are traveling at 5000 meters, the oxygen level on a train raised to a level approximately equivalent to 3000 meters. Even with the supplemental oxygen, some might experience mild effects of altitude sickness. To compensate for a lack of oxygen, there are individual oxygen outlets in each berth on a train. Train crew can provide you special tubes to connect to these oxygen outlets.

Traveling through high altitude areas might help to acclimatize to Lhasa altitude (3,650 meters). Although you don’t spend enough time on a train to fully acclimatize, it is certainly better than flying directly to Lhasa.

Cities with Railroad Connection to Lhasa

City Duration Distance Frequency
Beijing 40 hours 3757 Every Day
Shanghai 47 hours 4373 Every Day
Xian 31 hours 2864 Every Day
Chengdu 36 hours 3070 Every Other Day
Chongqing 36 hours 3030 Every Other Day
Guangzhou 53 hours 4980 Every Day
Xining 21 hours 1972 Several Times Every Day
Lanzhou 24 hours 2188 Several Times Every Day

Note: trains from Xian to Lhasa don’t actually originate in Xian. You will be boarding the train coming from either Shanghai (Z165) or Guangzhou (Z265).

Sleeping Classes

Soft sleeper berth

Soft sleeper or first class is the most comfortable option on a train to Tibet. It is a c ompartment with the door that locks with 4 sleeping berths: 2 on the lower level and two on the upper level with small stair leading to it. The beds are narrow, but they are soft and come with bedding. Upper beds might be priced cheaper than lower ones. There are power plugs and you can charge all your devices.

Hard sleeper berth

The budget option. It is a compartment with 6 berths in each. There is no door. It is generally 30% cheaper than soft sleeper berth. On the contrary to the name, the beds are not really hard,

Since there are no doors, there is very little privacy. And as there are 6 beds per each berth, there and more people using bathrooms. It is a great budget option, but be prepared.

Hard Seat Car

There are cars with hard seat option. The seats are not really hard. Although we advise you to book the hard seat only if you are traveling on a short distance, for example from Golmud to Lhasa or from Lhasa to Shigatse.

Booking a Train Ticket

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

The booking of train tickets begins 30 days before the departure date. During the peak season, trains to Tibet sell out fast and it might be difficult to get a ticket. We highly recommend to plan it in advance and book your tickets as early as possible.

There are usually only two cars with soft sleeper beds, and if you are interested in it, book as soon as you can. The hard sleeper beds are easier to secure.

Hard seat option is the least popular, especially on the longer routes. Sometimes, during the peak season, you can only buy the hard seat ticket. On the positive side, many Tibetans prefer traveling in the hard seat cart, and it could be a great experience.

You can purchase tickets through the travel agency. If you book your tour with us, we can book tickets for you at no additional cost.

Food and Water on a Train

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

There is hot water in every car. We recommend bringing your own thermos or stainless steel water bottles because water is too hot for most of the plastic bottles. If you want cold water, you can buy it in advance or cool down the water to the room temperature.

Every train has a dining car. It offers 3 meals a day, but its only Chinese food and Chinese menu. In addition, a person with a cart is walking through all train cars offering hot boxed meals (usually CNY25).

Most of the tourists prefer bringing their own food and snacks. You can also prepare instant cup noodles using the hot water.

This chapter contains the Title, Welcome to Tibet, Tibet’s Top 20, Need to Know, If You Like. Month by Month, Itineraries, Qīnghai–Tibet Railway, Tours & Permits, and Regions at a Glance chapters from Lonely Planet’s Tibet guidebook.

Your journey to Tibet starts here. You’ll find the tools to plan your adventure: where to go and when, how much to budget, plus in-depth info on tours and permits.

  • tailor-made itineraries, arranged by region, themes and events
  • list of highlights and best experiences
  • everything you need to know about the Qinghai–Tibet Railway
  • user-friendly country overview ensures you won’t miss a thing

Coverage includes: Title, Welcome to Tibet, Tibet’s Top 20, Need to Know, If You Like: Off-the-Beaten-Track Monasteries, Trekking & Hiking, Palaces, Forts & Temples, In-credible Scenery, Cultural Encounters, Pilgrim Paths, Overland Trips, Lakes, Outdoor Activities, Month by Month, Itineraries, Qunghai–Tibet Railway, Tours & Permits, and Regions at a Glance.

How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

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How to Plan a Trip to Tibet

Tourists take photos at a scenic spot in China’s Tibet Autonomous Region/Xinhua

The research, conducted annually and published by Tibet’s tourism administration on Wednesday, shows 98.2 percent of the tourists are happy with Tibet’s environment and services, while 73 percent are planning a second trip.

Last year, Tibet received nearly 8.7 million Chinese and international tourist arrivals, up 27 percent year-on-year, according to figures released by the administration.

Meanwhile, the region’s tourism income grew by 35.8 percent to 9.7 billion yuan (1.54 billion US dollars).

Senior tourism official Yu Yungui attributed the growth to a significant increase in the number of tourists in the off-season.

“Last year, the travel rush came in April, at least a month earlier than normal,” he said.

Tibet also offered special winter tour packages by cutting hotel rates and ticket prices to major tourist destinations to draw more off-season tourists, he said.

By the end of 2011, Tibet had 177 star-level hotels with more than 90,000 beds in total and 1,363 travel service companies with more than 15 billion yuan of fixed assets. The tourism industry employed nearly 250,000 people.

This year, the plateau region is expecting 10 million tourists and 12 billion yuan of tourism income.

By 2015, an estimated 15 million tourists will visit Tibet annually, generating up to 18 billion yuan in annual tourism revenue, according to the region’s 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015).