Tibet is vast and broad, knowing where is Tibet and how to visit Tibet is important before you plan your Tibet trip.
Tibet, a pearl on the Qinghai-Tibet plateau, has attracted a lot of followers from all over the world. It has a unique landscape, snow towering mountains, holy lakes, mysterious Tibetan Buddhism, magnificent monasteries, colorful prayer flags, and many other fantastic things for you to explore.
However, it’s not as easy as other places in China for foreigners to travel due to its special geographic and political situations. Hence, here we list the step-by-step tips for foreigners traveling to Tibet based on our experience. Now, let’s get started…
where is tibet located? Tibet Autonomous Region, located in the southwest of China with a land area of 1.22 million square kilometers, is the second-largest province in China.
What’s the Best Time to Visit Tibet?
Tibet is a place you can visit all year round, except for mid-February to March when Tibet will close for foreigners due to the Chinese and Tibetan New Year. You can choose the rest of the year to make your Tibet tour.
The best time to visit Tibet is from April to October, during which, the weather is the best, neither too hot, nor too cold. You can get a clear view of the most tourist attractions in Tibet. Besides, the oxygen content of the air is higher than other times, which is helpful indeed to reduce the risk of getting altitude sickness. July, August, and September are the peak tourist season, so the price is relatively higher. It’s advised to avoid the Chinese National Holiday(Oct 1st to 7th) when millions of Chinese people head to Tibet and you have to enjoy the scenic spots with a lot of people.
Where to Go?
As a big highlight of Tibet tours, Everest Base Camp attracts 60% of the travelers during their Tibet trip. The best time to visit Mt. Everest is from late April to May and late September to October. Another 20% of travelers would visit Mt.Kailash. The best time to have Mt.Kailash pilgrim trekking tour is from September and October when the weather is moderate and the scenery is the best of the year. It’s better to avoid monsoon season from late June to August. Only 20% of the travelers would visit Lhasa and surrounding areas alone.
Tibet's landscape is so diverse and impressive that it worth a visit. Its magnificent mountain ranges, high-altitude lakes, monasteries with a long history, the desolate western desert, and graceful eastern Nyingchi, etc. All these represent the utmost beauty.
Tibet mainly has the Himalayas, the main peak Mt.Everest (8844.43), the world's highest peak, snow all year-round. Gangdise mountains, main peak Mt.Kailash (6721). It is recognized as a sacred mountain in the world, and it is also recognized as the center of the world by Hinduism, Tibetan Buddhism, ben-ism, the indigenous religion of Tibet, and ancient Jainism. NyenchenThanglha mountain (7162), the top of the main peak shaped like an eagle beak, many rock cliffs. It is covered with mist and cloud during the day and snow and ice all year round. Tanggula Mountains, the birthplace of the Yangtze River.
The Tibet autonomous region has the highest concentration of lakes in China, accounting for 34 percent of the country's total lake area. According to statistics, there are more than 1,500 lakes in Tibet's vast territory。17 are more than 5,000 meters above sea level, all of which cover more than 50 square kilometers.Tibet's lakes vary in color, like sapphire, turquoise, jade stone, scattered between the snow mountain pasture. The most famous lakes, like Namtso, Yamdrok lake, Mansarovar.
Tibetan culture is Buddhist culture. The best way to get a deep understanding of Tibetan culture is to visit Tibetan temples. There are more than 6,000 monasteries in Tibet, most of which are built on hilltops. The most popular ones are the Jokhang Temple, Sera Monastery, Drepung Monastery, Ganden Monastery, etc. The amazing structural style, unique spiritual experience, and atmosphere of these monasteries appeal to so many tourists.
The western desolated desert region covers an area of more than 300,000 kilometers but only has more than 70,000 people, about 0.2 people per square kilometer on average. Mt. Kailash and Manasarovar are right here. In the Zanda region between the Gangdese mountains and the Himalayas, along the Xiang Quan river valley, there is a magnificent clay forest, which is known as the "Zanda forest", which is a very unique plateau landform formed by the erosion of the ancient great lake basin and the riverbed. In the clay forests, there are the ruins of the kingdom of Guge and widely distributed rock paintings.
Nyingchi city is known as the Jiangnan region of Tibet. Because of its low altitude and abundant rainfall, it has rich vegetation and natural landscape, which is different from other parts of Tibet. Basuntso, a famous sacred lake of the red sect of Tibetan Buddhism. The Yarlung Zangbo grand canyon is the deepest canyon in the world. The Lulang forest, about 15 kilometers long, is covered with a variety of fir and pine trees, which look very spectacular. Bomi peach blossom valley is the largest peach blossom valley in China. In addition, Bomi is also the "most beautiful glacier town", with more than 2,000 glaciers, including the famous Midui glacier.
What to eat in Tibet?
tibetan food is also called tibetan cuisine. Tsampa(Zanba), Buttered Tea, Sweet Tea, Yak Meat, Tibetan Noodle, Tibetan Yogurt, Highland Barley Wine(Chang), Tibetan Momo, Sheep Blood Sausage, Air Dried Meat, etc.
How Long to Stay in Tibet?
For first-timers, it is recommended to stay for 8~15 days in Tibet. By visiting the main attractions, you can see the unique cultural landscape and natural scenery of Tibet: the magnificent Potala Palace, the turquoise Yamdrok lake, the spectacular Everest peak even Mt. Kailash and Manasarovar in remote Ngari Prefecture. You can take your 8 Days Lhasa Gyantse Shigatse Mt. Everest Group Tour or 15 Days Mt.Everest & Mt.Kailash Kora Pilgrimage Group Tour with us to truly appreciate Tibet.
Knowing what you expect to see or do in Tibet will help determine how long you should stay. The more you want to experience, the more time you will need to take.
How Much Would a Trip to Tibet Cost?
It’s also a frequently asked question. Have a quick look at the costs below:
You can only reach Tibet from mainland China or Kathmandu, Nepal. If you are from Europe, you can fly to Kathmandu first. If you are from the US, you are suggested to fly to mainland China for shorter flight duration and cheaper cost. The cost is similar, about USD800 to USD1200 for a round trip. By the way, summer is always the most expensive travel time.
- Traveling from Kathmandu/mainland China to Tibet
You can take an overland tour or fly from Kathmandu to Lhasa. The overland tour costs USD1200 p.p. if you join in a group tour, however, it included the tour fee along the way, so it’s a cost-effective one. For round trip flights between Kathmandu and Lhasa, the cost is about USD600 to USD800.
Flying from major entry cities to Tibet, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, etc. The round trip flight fare would be USD700 or USD800. Meanwhile, you can take a train for one way to save the cost. The train journey cost is about USD300.
Great Tibet Tour is a local Tibet travel agency with more than 15 years of service experience, real insiders design your trip. Book your Tibet Tours with Great Tibet Tour - a trustworthy and reliable local Tibet travel agency. We offer a variety of group Tibet tour packages and customizable private tours to Lhasa, Mt.Everest, Mt.Kailash, Kathmandu, etc. with the best service and budget prices.