Nicknamed the “Roof of the World,” Tibet is a land of astonishingly wide open space and domineering Himalayan peaks, but it is a culture that is dominated and oppressed by their Chinese invaders.
Travel to Tibet in a responsible, engaging manner is getting more difficult, but still possible. Travel insurance is a must because the region can be closed unpredictably by Chinese authorities. Do your research before deciding to go to understand the issues involved.
NEW MINIMUM GROUP SIZE REQUIREMENT!
Starting in Mid-May, 2012, Chinese authorities have imposed a minimum group size requirement of 5 people for travel to Tibet. Group members must all be of the same nationality, arriving in Tibet on the same date from the same city, and leaving Tibet on the same date.
Getting to Tibet
There are only two options for getting to Tibet: through China or through Kathmandu, Nepal. If you go through China, you can fly from several cities to Lhasa. These include Beijing, Xian, and Chengdu. You can also take the new train which takes about 48 hours. However, you can only book the tickets 10 days prior to departure and the chances of landing a ticket for your particular day are only about 50%. Therefore, if your itinerary isn't flexible, we recommend flying in to Lhasa and taking the train out, which is easier to book.
If you travel to Tibet via Nepal, you can either drive or fly. The drive takes about 6 to 7 days. The flight is spectacular, crossing the Himalaya with often great views of Mt. Everest. Going via Nepal, people often fly in, then drive out, or vice versa.
Our Personal Picks
- The Tibetan Culture
- The Norbulinkga (Jewel Park) – the summer palace of the Dalai Lama
- Observing the resident monks debate in the courtyard of Sera Monastery
- Drive across the 5,045m/16,600ft Karo La with views of the Nojin Kangtsand Glacier
- A visit to Mt. Everest Base Camp on the Tibetan side of the mountain
When to Travel
For the best weather, travel to Tibet in the Spring, Summer, and Autumn. Tourism tends to swell in the summer with the opening of the train from Beijing and March tends to be a politically sensitive month for Tibet, often causing the border to tighten. If you’re interested in trekking, go between May through September are ideal conditions.
Both US and Canadian citizens are required to have a Chinese visa when entering Tibet via China. Additionally, you will need a Tibet Permit, which we will organize as part of our service. No Chinese visa is required if you go through Nepal and we will provide the Tibet Permit on arrival in Kathmandu.
Below are sample itineraries for privately-guided cultural tours in Tibet. Book them as is or customize them to fit your travel style and schedule! These tours offer an excellent insight into the unique way of life and religion of the Tibetan people as they struggle to being a part of China.
NEW! Visit Nepal, Tibet, and Bhutan, three of the most exotic and unique countries in the world.
We can also extend your trip in India , Nepal or Thailand.
We can arrange the trek below or a customized trek to any region in Tibet for your private group of 2 to 16 people on dates that suit your schedule. Contact us for more information.