Ways to Get to Tibet

Surrounded by high grand Himalaya mountains, Tibet always keeps a mysterious veil to the outsiders. With the crystal-like lakes, snow-capped mountain, splendid temples, and monasteries, Tibet has become an ultimate dreamy place for most travelers in the world. Every year, thousands of tourists from other countries or cities traveling to Tibet in order to explore the stunning natural views and the traditional Tibetan culture. While how to get to Tibet has confused lots of tourists. In order to help you choose the best way to enter Tibet, I prepare a tour guide of ways to get to Tibet. Wish you have a wonderful time in Tibet.

Normally, there are two main ways for travelers to get to Tibet. The first way is to take a train to Tibet. The second way is to take a flight to Tibet. Here are some details.

Take a Train to Tibet

Taking a train to Tibet is a popular way for most travelers since the construction of Qinghai Tibet Railway. There are several advantages for travelers to take a train to Tibet. The first advantage is to save money. The price of the train ticket is cheaper than the price of the air ticket. The second advantage is to enjoy the attractive scenery along the railway. The scenery along the highest railway in the world is stunning and majestic. The third advantage is to adapt to the high altitude sickness. Owing to the long duration time, travelers have enough time to adapt to the high altitude sickness. At present, there are several Chinese cities which provide the service of booking train tickets to Lhasa. Taking a direct train to Lhasa is the most economical way. However, due to the numerous visitors, booking a train ticket is very hard, especially in the peak tourist season. Therefore, you should book the train ticket in advance. You can book a train ticket in the following Chinese cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Chongqing, Chengdu, Xining, Guangzhou, Xi’an, and Lanzhou. There are three train kinds of train tickets, including the soft sleeper berth, the hard sleeper berth, and the hard seat. The soft sleeper berth with four berths and the hard sleeper berth with six berths are worthy of being recommended to you. The hard seat is not the best choice for a long trip. You are not allowed to lie down on the seat, so you will feel very tired.

Take a Flight to Tibet

Taking a flight to Tibet is the fastest way. You can save a lot of time on the way to Tibet. If you fly to Tibet in China, you can book a flight ticket in Beijing, Chengdu, Shanghai, Nanjing, Chongqing, Yunnan, Hong Kong, Guangzhou, etc. If you fly to Tibet from other countries, you can only buy the direct flight in Kathmandu. If you sit by the window, you can have a chance to witness the beauty of Mt Everest. You should book the air ticket in advance because of the limitation of the seat. If you have any problem with booking a flight ticket, you can ask your travel agency for help.

Seven Days Lhasa to Kathmandu Tour

From the ancient time to the present, Himalaya always keeps a mysterious impression to the world. Isolated by the high grand mountains and boundless forests, it is more like a paradise on Earth. Every year, countless travelers from home and abroad head to this mysterious region for the purpose of exploring the attractive natural scenery and ancient traditions. As the two most popular Himalayan kingdoms, Tibet and Nepal are the best places for travelers to start your adventure. There are a great number of Nepal and Tibet tour packages which are popular among travelers. Here I’d like to introduce a classic tour package which departure from Lhasa to Kathmandu by overland. It takes travelers seven days to finish this tour. And along the way, you can visit a lot of famous attractions in Tibet and Nepal. Please check the details in the following itinerary.

Day One: Lhasa Arrival

No matter you take a train to Lhasa – the capital city of Tibet or take the direct flight to Lhasa, your tour guide will wait for you at the train station or airport. Then, your tour guide will take you to the local hotels in Tibet. I suggest you have a good rest in your hotel in order to adapt to the high altitude sickness.

Day Two: Lhasa Tour

In the morning, your tour guide will take you to visit the landmark of Lhasa city – Potala Palace. In the past, it was used as the winter palace for Dalai Lama. At present, it has become a modern museum in Tibet where you can have a better understanding of Tibetan cultures and traditions by visiting the antiques, paintings, and so on. In the afternoon, your tour guide will take you to visit the holiest temple in Tibet, Jokhang Temple. It was built in the seventh century by Songtsen Gampo to house the statue of Buddha Sakyamuni at the age of twelve. Most pilgrims from remote Tibetan areas or other nations such as India, Nepal, etc head to Jokhang Temple for the purpose of doing kora and seeking blessings. Outside the Jokhang Temple, the busy Barkhor street crows with numerous sellers and buyers. You can buy a lot of souvenirs on the street. Enjoying a cup of sweet tea in a local tea house is the best way to get close to the locals.

Day Three: Lhasa Tour

Today, your tour guide will take you to visit two famous monasteries in Tibet, including Drepung Monastery and Sera Monastery.

As one of the “Three Great Gelug monasteries in Tibet, Drepung monastery was built in 1416. The highlight of the Drepung Monastery is the biggest monastery kitchen. After lunch, you will visit Sera Monastery. The highlight in Sera Monastery is the hot Buddhism debate.

Day Four: From Lhasa to Shigatse

Today, you will be driven from Lhasa to Shigatse. The scenery along the way is stunning and attractive, you will have a chance to visit the grand mountains and crystal-like lakes such as Gampala pass, Yamdrok-Tso Lake, Mount Nyenchen Khangsar, Korola Glacier, Simila Mountain Pass, Pelkor Monastery, and Gyangtse Fortress.

Day Five: From Shigatse to EBC

In the morning, your tour guide will take you to visit the holy Tashilunpo Monastery. then, you will be driven from Shigatse to Lhatse. After lunch, you will head to EBC. Along the way, you can enjoy the scenery in Mt. Everest National Nature Reserve and Everest Base Camp.

Day Six: From EBC to Gyirong Port

After visiting the stunning views of Mt Everest and the sacred Rongbuk Monastery, you will head to Gyirong port from EBC.

Day Seven: Kathmandu Arrival

Your Nepalese tour guide will wait for you at the Nepal side. Then you will head to Kathmandu and start your Nepal tour.

Facts of Lhasa City

As the capital city of Tibet, Lhasa is a hot tourist destination for travelers who plan a tour in Tibet, China. Every year, numerous tourists and pious pilgrims head to this holy city for the purpose of exploring the beauty of it. Regarded as the center of religion, politics, culture, and economy, Lhasa city is surrounded by a great number of attractions such as Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Sera Monastery and so on. Owing to the vital position in Tibet, having a tour in Lhasa is the primary mission to most of the tourists. In order to help you have a wonderful experience in Lhasa, we have collected a lot of documents and materials about fast of Lhasa city. Here are some details.

What is the Altitude of Lhasa City?

The average altitude of Tibet is about four thousand meters. There are seven regions in Tibet in total, including Lhasa, Shigatse, Shannan, Nagqu, Ngari, Nyingchi, and Chamdo. The high altitude of Lhasa city is about 3658 meters, Shigatse is about 3836 meters, Shannan is about 3600 meters, Nagqu is about 4507 meters, Ngari is about 4500 meters, Nyingchi is about 3000 meters, and Chamdo is about 3241 meters.

Normally, the high altitude of Lhasa city is lower and it is the best landing place for travelers to adapt to the high altitude. Besides that, Lhasa is always taken as a starting point for a real Tibet tour.

How About the Weather in Lhasa?

Because of the height and thin air, Lhasa belongs to the semi-arid monsoon climate with more than three thousand hours of sunlight in a whole year. Compared with Chengdu and Shanghai in China, the hours of the sunlight have outnumbered greatly. That’s why Lhasa is also known as “City of Sunshine”.

The weather is Lhasa city is fine and comfortable. You won’t feel the swelter in summer, nor the chilly in winter. Thanks to the grand Himalayan mountains on Tibetan plateau, Lhasa is sheltered away from the cold in the north. Tibet summer is also comfortable as a result of the high altitude. In summer, the average temperature in the daytime is about twenty degrees, and the average temperature at night is about ten degrees. In winter, Lhasa city is warmer than other remote places in Tibet. The average temperature in the daytime is about ten degrees, and the average temperature at night is about zero degrees. Thus, Lhasa city can be visited all year round.

From July to August is the rainy season for Lhasa city. But you don’t have to worry about the precipitation because it always rains at night. You can enjoy the stunning sunrise in the morning the next day.

What Is the Top Things to Do in Lhasa City?

As the center of Tibetan Buddhism, Lhasa city is full of attractions and scenic spots. There are some famous places which are worthy of being recommended to you, such as the landmark of Lhasa – Potala Palace, the spiritual heart of Lhasa – Jokhang Temple, the shopping center – Barkhor Street, the Buddhism debate site – Sera Monastery, etc.

Documents Needed for Everest Base Camp Tour

Staying close with the Mt Everest, Everest Base Camp is the best place to enjoy the beauty of the highest mountain. Every year, thousands of travelers travel to Tibet or Nepal for the purpose of achieving their ultimate Everest Base Camp tour dream. However, due to the unique background, planning an Everest Base Camp tour is not as easy as other places in the world. Due to the high altitude in Tibet, travelers must overcome some difficulties such as the altitude sickness, low oxygen content, and changeable weather. A strong and healthy body is the primary physical condition to have a tour in Everest Base Camp. Besides that, travelers should hold certain permits and documents before traveling there, no matter from Tibet side or Nepal side. In order to make you have a better understanding what documents needed for Everest Base Camp tour, I resort lots of information about it.

Permits Needed for Everest Base Camp in Tibet

For Non-Chinese passport holders, international travelers should hold kinds of documents when traveling to Everest Base Camp from Tibet. Normally, there are three kinds of documents which are needed, including Tibet Entry Permit, Alien’s Travel Permit, and Mountaineering License.

Tibet Travel Permit

As the obligatory permit, Tibet Travel Permit plays an important role for foreigners in the world. Issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau, Tibet Travel Permit should be held when you enter the border of Tibet, visiting Tibetan attractions, checking Tibetan hotels, and applying for other permits in Tibet. However, it cannot be applied by your own. Only an authorized local travel agency like Great Tibet Tour can apply for it for free if you book their tour packages. Thus, before traveling to Tibet, you should find the professional travel agency in advance and ask for help.

Aliens’ Travel Permit

The second permit you need to hold is the Aliens’ Travel Permit which is issued by the Public Security Bureau in Lhasa. The application of this permit is easier than the former one. It can be applied when you arrive in Lhasa. The travel agency will help apply for it after you give your passport and Tibet Travel Permit to them. The application fee is about 50 CNY for each person. Several hours’ later, you can get your Aliens’ Travel Permit.

Tibet Trekking Permit

Once your tour itinerary reaches the high altitude above 6000 meters, you are required to have the Tibet Trekking Permit. Like the above two permits, an individual is not allowed to apply for it. Your travel agency will help you.

Mountaineering License

For those who plan to conquer Mt Everest, they must hold the Mountaineering License. Issued by Tibet Mountaineering Association, Mountaineering License can be gotten with certain documents and 200 US dollars.

Permits Needed for Everest Base Camp in Nepal

Besides the Nepal visa, travelers should apply for another document: Trekking Information Management System Card.

Trekking Information Management System Card (TIMS card)

If tourists trek to Everest Base Camp from Nepal, they are required to have the TIMS card. Issued by Service Centre or Trekking Agencies’ Association of Nepal, TIMS card takes travelers US$20 for an individual, US$10 for a group member. When applying for it, your passport and two passport photos are needed.

Tibet Tour from Shanghai

With the development of transportation,more and more international tourists travel to Tibet. Commonly, they get to Tibet from the mainlands of China. Therefore, not only can they have a tour in some major Chinese cities, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Chengdu, etc, but also they can explore the charming scenery along the way to Tibet. Located in the southeast of China, Shanghai is a modern and flourishing city with a long history. As one of the hottest tourist destinations for international travelers, traveling to Tibet from Shanghai has the main choice for most travelers because of the numerous attractions and convenient transportation. In Shanghai, you can visit some famous places such as the Oriental TV Tower, Shanghai Museum, Expo Site, etc. Then you can transfer to Tibet from Shanghai. At present, there are two main ways for travelers to get to Tibet from Shanghai. The first way is to take a direct train, and the second way is to take the direct flight. Here, I’d like to share these two main ways with you.

Taking a Flight to Tibet

If you have a tight schedule, flying to Tibet from Shanghai is the fastest way. At present, there is only one direct flight flying from Shanghai to Lhasa. This flight operated by China Eastern Airline with a stopover in Xi’an takes off from Shanghai Pudong International Airport at 06:45 every day, and arrives at Lhasa Kongga International Airport at 14:40. The direct distance from Shanghai to Lhasa is about 2906 kilometers, and the whole duration time is about eight hours. In Lhasa side, it takes off from Lhasa Kongga International Airport at 15:30 in the afternoon, and arrives at Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport at 21:45.

Taking a Train to Tibet

If you have enough time, you can have an experience on the Tibet train. As is known to us, Qinghai Tibet Railway is the highest railway in the world. Because of the unique environment condition, the scenery along the way is really attractive. Taking a train to Tibet is the best way to explore the charming natural beauty, especially from Xining to Lhasa section. At present, there is only one direct train running from Shanghai to Lhasa. The railway distance from Shanghai to Lhasa is about 4,373 kilometers. Z164 departs from Shanghai Railway Station at 20:10 every day, and arrives at Lhasa railway station at 19:30. It will take nearly three days to get to Tibet from Shanghai by train. At Lhasa side, Z166 departs from Lhasa at 11:30, and arrives at Shanghai railway station at 11:51. There are two kinds of train tickets which are recommended to you, the hard sleeper berth and the soft sleeper berth. The price of the hard sleeper berth is about CNY793.5, and the price of the soft sleeper berth is about CNY1262.5.

Tips for Shanghai Tibet Tour

Do not forget your Tibet Travel Permit when taking flights or trains to Tibet from Shanghai. Book a train ticket in advance, especially in the peak tourism season. You’d better take a train to Tibet for the purpose of adapting to the high altitude sickness.

The Beauty in Ngari

Someone says that the mysterious and remote west of Tibet is the real Tibet. The scenery in the west is charming and attractive with the boundless landscape, crystal-like lakes, flying eagles, running Tibetan antelopes, and ancient cultural relics. This area has a sound name – Ngari where crowned as “The Ancestor of All Mountains, The Origin of All Rivers”. Here is the ultimate challenge for those who are found risks and adventures. Only for those who have a belief of nature can witness the beauty in Ngari.

Ngari Impression

If you say that Tibet is the Roof of the World, Ngari is the Ridge of the Roof indeed. There are lots of attractions in Nagri such as the holiest mountain – Mt Kailash, the sacred lake – Lake Manasarovar, the boundless forest – Zanda Earth Forest, and the historical relic – Guge Kingdom Ruins.

There are two main routes for travelers to get to Ngari. The one is the south route, and the other is the north route. What’s more, you can also arrive in Ngari from Xinjiang by New Tibet Highway. Here are some details about the south and north routes

Nagri South Route

If you choose this way, you will cross by the boundless grassland between the Himalaya ranges and Mt Kailash. You can enjoy some famous places such as Zanda Earth Forest, holy lakes and mountains, and Guge Kingdom Ruins. This is the most popular route for most travelers.

Nagri North Route

Nagri North Route is full of adventure with rich humanistic natural scenery, which is the best route for adventure enthusiasts. You can enter Nagri from the north route, and go back from the south route. You can also choose the south route in and the north route out.

New Tibet Highway

New Tibet Highway is the highest road in the world. It crossover lots of famous mountains with an average altitude of 4500 meters such as Kunlun Mountains, Karakoram, Kailash Ranges, Himalaya Ranges.

Mt Kailash

Mt Kailash plays an important role in Tibet, and it is regarded as the most sacred mountain in the world. With splendid shape, jade-like color, blue sky, and crystal-like lakes surrounding by, Mt Kailash is like a God guarding this land.

Mt Kailash is the terminal point for pious pilgrims. It is said that trekking Mt Kailash with a circle can rinse one’s sins in the whole life.

Location: in the north of Lake Manasarovar, Burang County, Nagri

Visit Time: the whole day

Best Tour Season: from May to June. During the two months, it is sunny and warm, without many drops of rain.

Guge Kingdom Ruins

When mentioned the most miraculous place in Nagri, Guge Kingdom Ruins ranks on the top. Three hundred years ago, the mysterious Guge Kingdom appeared in an overnight. Now, we can only learn about its history through the scattered relics and walls.

Location: in the south bank of Langqên Zangbo, northwest of Tholing town, Zanda County, Nagri

Visit Time: 8:00-19:00

Tibet Travel Permit to Enter Tibet

Because of the unique national tradition and cultural heritage of Tibet, foreigners must own Tibetan Entry Permit issued by Tibet Tourism Bureau when they plan to conduct a travel to Tibet, which is not as easy as their travel to the mainland of China.

People Who Have to Own Tibet Entry Permit

It is necessary for all foreigners to have Tibet Travel Permit when entering Tibet. It is the same as those who are Chinese but living overseas without Chinese passport. If you are from Hong Kong or Macau, you don’t need to have a Tibet Entry Permit, but you have to take your SAR Passport and Home Return Permit with you. But if you are Taiwanese, you have to own both Mainland Travel Permit and Tibet Entry Permit(Not available for Taiwanese currently). What’s more, if you get to get Tibet from Nepal, another document you have to own is Tibet Group Visa.

Procedure for Applying for a Tibet Entry Permit

As Tibet Autonomous Region is a part of China, Chinese Visa is needed when foreigners entering China. But if you enter Tibet from Nepal, Chinese Visa is not needed. Overseas tourists need to apply for Chinese Visa in a Chinese Embassy at first. Foreigners are not allowed to apply for Tibet Entry Permit by themselves, so contacting a licensed local travel agency in advance is of vital importance. Agency will arrange your travel itineraries. Despite this, a travel agency can help you apply for the permit, which will show your itineraries in detail. What you need to do is sending an email of the photo of your passport information page, Chinese Visa page and your occupation to the travel agency. Then you can receive your permit before your departure to Tibet.

Time to Use Tibet Entry Permit

If you get to Tibet by train, a copy of your Tibet Entry Permit will be checked at the departure train station; while if you go to Tibet by air, the original permit will be checked at the departure airport. But if you enter Tibet through Nepal, only the copy of the permit is needed. Then when you are in Tibet, the permit is checked at hotels as well as the entries of some attractions.

What Does Tibet Entry Permit Contain

Tibet Entry Permit is a paper contains your tour group number, your Tibet tour date, your daily itineraries, number of travelers and the tour operator.

Other Documents Needed in Tibet

When you travel to outside Lhasa, Aliens Travel Permit is needed, which is issued by the Public Security Bureau. When you visit places as follows, you have to show your Aliens Travel Permit: Samye Monastery, Tomb of Tibetan King, Trundruk Monastery and Yumbulakhang in Tsedang; Sakya Monastery, Mt. Everest and Rongbuk Monastery in Shigatse; PelkorChode Monastery in Gyangtse; Mt. Kailash, Lake Manasarovar, Tsaparang and etc. in Ngari Region; Basum-tso, Pomi, Rawo-tso and etc. in Nyingchi Region; Chamdo, Riwoche, Tengchen and etc. in Chamdo Region.

When you visit military sensitive areas in Tibet such as Mount Kailash in Ali and Rowok Lake in Chamdo, you also need the Military Area Entry Permit issued by the military affairs office as well.

8 Days Chengdu Tibet Tour

This 8 days Chengdu Tibet tour is made for travelers who will take a tour in Chengdu before their arrival in Tibet. Chengdu is a good gateway for tourists who are interested in traveling in Tibet from Southeast Asia. On the one hand, there are many international flights connecting to Southeast Asia; on the other hand, Chengdu has its own attraction for tourists from all over the world. Before entering the holy land Tibet, you can have a good time in enjoying the Giant Panda and the delicious Si-chuan food in Chengdu. The highlights of the tour are Chengdu Research Base of Giant Panda Breeding, Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery, Namtso Lake.

Day 1 Arrive in Chengdu

Our guide will meet you at Shuangliu International Airport. Then transfer you to the hotel. The rest of the day is free. You can have a good rest at your hotel or walk around your hotel.

Day 2 Chengdu Sightseeing

After breakfast, your guide will meet you at the hall of your hotel. Then, we will go to Chengdu Panda Research Center. The morning is the panda’s feeding time. You can see both adult panda and baby panda. After their feeding, you can enjoy playing with the cute panda. In the afternoon, we will drive back to the downtown of Chengdu. After dinner, your guide will accompany you to walk around the Jinli Street. There are various kinds of snacks at Jinli Street, most of those are unique in Sichuan province. You may have a try. And, Jinli street is also a good place to buy the souvenirs.

Days 3 fly to Tibet.

Today, you will take a flight to your next destination Tibet.

Day 4 Lhasa sightseeing

This is the first day of your Tibet sightseeing Tour on the Plateau. After breakfast, your guide will pick you up to the landmark of Tibet – Potala Palace. Potala Palace is the highest palace in the world. It is the residence of Dalai Lama once ever. In the afternoon, go on your next attraction – Jokhang Temple. Jokhang Temple is regarded as the spiritual heart of Tibetan Buddhism. It was designed by King Songtsan who marry two princesses. One is the princess of Tang Dynasty in China, the other is a Nepal princess.

Day 5 Lhasa Sightseeing

Today we will also visit two temples. Do not feel boring. Though today’s sightseeing is still the temples, every temple has its own beauty. Drepung Monastery plays an important role in Buddhist monasteries in Tibet. In the afternoon, you will appreciate the Buddhism Debating in Sera Monastery. Buddhism Debating is thought to be helpful to better comprehend the Buddhist philosophy.

Day 6 Lhasa to Namtso Lake

Today, we will drive to the Namtso Lake. The Namtso Lake is one of three holy lakes in Tibet. It has another name “ heavenly lake.” At present, the condition of the road from Lhasa to Namtso is good. It just a 4-hour driving journey. You need to stay overnight in the guesthouse at the lakeside.

Day 7 Namtso Lake to Lhasa

The schedule is very relaxed today. You can get up early to get a view of the sunrise in the Namtso Lake. Then, enjoy the amazing scenery. After lunch, we will drive back to Lhasa.

Day 8 Depart from Lhasa

Take a flight from Lhasa to your next destination.

Travel from Malaysia to Tibet

All foreign travelers must take part in an organized Tibet Tour. Before setting off, your Tibet Travel Agency should organize these things: Tibet travel permits, a private vehicle, a driver and a tour guide. You can’t go to Tibet without these. Your travel permits will be checked when you board a train or flight, which shows whether you have joined an organized tour.

Choosing a reputable, local-owned travel agency in Tibet is a need for you before traveling. They will arrange everything for you and also take great care of you during your trip in Tibet. Take it easy! Traveling from Malaysia to Tibet is quite convenient nowadays.

Entering Tibet from Chengdu, China

Without any direct flights from Malaysia to Tibet, you need to board a plane at the Kuala Lumpur Airport to Chengdu, and then transfer to Tibet–it is the first method. There are flights everyday between KL and Chengdu. Your Chinese tourist visa will be checked at your departure airport. You can get it from the China Embassy in Kuala Lumpur or at the China Consulates in Kuching, Penang and Kota Kinabalu. Please remember, do not list Tibet as your destination in your visa application, or else, it’s difficult for you to get this visa.

There are 8-12 direct flights daily to Lhasa at the Chengdu airport. The journey is nearly 2hrs and you can enjoy spectacular scenery through the window of the flight during the trip. Except taking a flight, another way to Tibet is by train which takes 2 full days. In the first two days, you’d better acclimatize yourself to live in the high elevation and avoid strenuous hiking, climbing the stairs of the Potala Palace and drinking alcohol.

After you contact with a local travel agency in Tibet, it takes at least 2 weeks to get a TTB. So you need to contact with the travel agency at least 6 weeks earlier before the date of your arrival. In the same way, if you want to travel to other destinations in far Western Tibet such as Mt. Kailash, Lake Manasarovar , you need to contact you tour agency at least 8 weeks before your arrival.

If you want to get more detailed information on Tibet tour or the route to Tibet, please contact us.

Entering Tibet from Kathmandu, Nepal

Another way to get to Tibet from Malaysia is through Kathmandu, Nepal. There are direct flights everyday between Kuala Lumpur and Kathmandu. You can choose to go by the overland route or just fly to Lhasa. The flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa takes only one hour and 15 minutes. In contrast, the overland journey takes 3 or 4 days. As mentioned above, all foreign tourists to Tibet must take part in an organized tour either from Mainland China or Nepal.

There are many differences on the Chinese visa regulation between going to Tibet from Nepal and Mainland China. As mentioned, when you leave from Chengdu or any other cities in Mainland China, you only need to apply for a normal Chinese tourist visa from the Chinese Embassy in KL or at the Chinese consulates in Kuching, Penang or Kota Kinabalu. But when you leave from Nepal, you must apply for a Group Chinese Tourist Visa from the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu. That is to say, you can’t go to Tibet from Nepal with a Chinese visa gotten in Malaysia or anywhere else on the planet. If you want to get a Group Chinese Tourist Visa, you need to refer a visa invitation letter to the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu. Pay attention to that you can’t write this letter by yourself but need to request from the travel agency in Tibet. Although it is officially named “China Group Visa”, you don’t need to join in a group in practice to get this visa. Solo travelers also can get this Group Chinese Visa successfully if they are members of organized group tours. It usually needs 2 business days to get the China Group Visa. Remember that you can only get you visa on a weekday at the Chinese Embassy. So please make sure that you have enough time after your arrival, so as to get your visa without any delay.

If you take an overland tour from Kathmandu to Lhasa, you should find whether your route line gives you adequate time for your acclimation to high elevation. While many travel agencies in Nepal and Tibet have short budget, they offer schedules that travelers can’t feel accommodated and it may lead to serious altitude sickness risks. Kathmandu is not high enough to adapt to the altitude change with 1350 meters above sea level. Especially one of the routes covers an elevation to 5200 meters from Kathmandu to Everest Base Camp in just three days offered by some travel agencies. This kind of behavior is extremely stupid and crazy. With increasing of altitude, travelers are at the risk of causing serious altitude sickness or even high altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE). The best way I suggest is to take a flight to Lhasa from Kathmandu, and spend at least 3 nights in Lhasa. And then take a bus back to Nepal during which travelers can enjoy the main sites in Central Tibet, including Everest Base Camp.

Cheap Tibet Tour

Every year, a lot of travelers are attracted to Tibet, the top of the world. Located on Tibetan Plateau in Asia, Tibet is a remote scenery spot with high altitude, less oxygen, grand mountains, clear sky, and green lakes. Because of the poor transportation, tough environment, and harsh climate, the costs of Tibet tour are higher than any other spots in the world. Here, we have concluded some tips and suggestions for tourists to reduce their costs. If you are planning a cheap Tibet tour, you’d better know these notes.


There are two main ways for tourists to go to Tibet, one is taking a train, the other is taking an airplane. As is known to us, taking airplane is more expensive than taking trains. Thus, you can take a train to Tibet when you are having a cheap Tibet tour. Besides that, the costs can be much lower for travelers if they book the tickets of hard sleeper berth rather than the soft sleeper berth. The former is annoying but also comfortable, and it has 6 berths in a carriage. The later is quieter with 4 berths in one. The price of a soft berth ticket is the same as an air ticket, but the price of a hard sleeper berth ticket is 65% of the soft berth. Thus, booking a hard sleeper berth is the best choice to have a cheap Tibet tour.

Group Tour

Apart from taking trains, the Tibet group tour is also a budget way. Foreigners on their own are not allowed to travel to Tibet. They must follow a tour group. If you join a tour group, you will reduce the costs of food, tour guides, hotels, and vehicles. The costs can be very low with the increasing number of group members. But it doesn’t mean that the more, the well. The best number of a group is 8 to 9. In this kind of group, travelers can not only have a cheap Tibet tour but also can have a better communication with the tour guide and each other.

Cheap accommodation

Booking a cheap accommodation can also reduce the costs of tour fares. In Tibet, some economic hotels which provide simple breakfast and clean standard rooms are about 15-25USD per night, but some cheap hotels and family houses are just 8-10USD per night. For a cheap Tibet tour, you ‘d better book the cheaper accommodation, and your costs will be cut down by at least 50%.

Visit Time

Tourists always travel to Tibet from April to October. So, during this time, it is the peak season of Tibetan tourism, however, the fares of traveling are more expensive than the low season. Tourists are afraid of the cold weather and the heavy snow. But in fact, the weather is fine and warm in winter if you visit Lhasa. From November to March, the temperature can reach 10 to 18 degrees in the daytime and the temperature is about 0 degree at night. It is warmer than other northern cities of China.