What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet - Breathe Travel

Tibet is a stunning place in the western part of China, neighboring India, Nepal, Bhutan and Kashmir.

Surrounded by snow-capped mountains and lakes, Tibet is known as ”the roof of the world”. The country can be divided up into three areas based on its landscape - forest (in the east), grassland (in the north) and farmland (in the central and southern regions). And no matter where you will travel to, you can find a special and unique civilization which has become what it is over thousands of years.

Are you planning on visiting Tibet, a remote, isolated and breathtakingly beautiful place, but don't know where to start? Here are some tips to show you how...

How to get a permit to travel to Tibet

To enter into Tibet, you need have your passport, a Chinese visa and a Tibet Travel Permit. You should apply for Chinese visa from the Chinese Embassy in your home country, and then ask your travel agency in Lhasa to help you apply for Tibet Travel Permit from Tibet Tourism Bureau.

If you fly to Lhasa from one of China's cities, your travel agency will mail the original permit to your hotel in the city in advance and you need hold the original permit to board the flight. If you take a train from one of China's cities, such as Beijing, Xining, Chengdu, Shanghai, etc, they will send the scanned image of your permit to you via email, and you need print it in colors and carry it to board the train to Lhasa.

Independent travel to Tibet is not allowed. Travelers must book an organized tour from a Tibetan travel agency. The travel agency will organize the Tibet travel permit, a tour guide and vehicle for you. If you don’t like the idea of joining a group tour, you may take a private tour.

Without a Tibetan travel permit, you won’t be able to board a flight or train to Tibet and won’t be able to apply for other permits you need to continue travelling throughout Tibet.

What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet by @TibettravelOrg #travel

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When is the best time to go to Tibet

Summer and autumn are best when the temperature is comfortable and oxygen content is higher; thus you can travel to high altitude places with lots of sun and enjoy stunning views of the mountains.

How to prevent/reduce high altitude sickness

  • Being fit and healthy will help tremendously with reducing or preventing high altitude sickness, both physically and psychologically. Try to stay calm and not be too nervous.
  • Sleep well and rest well on the day before your arrival to the high altitude.
  • Keep your immune system healthy to avoid catching a cold before you go. It's difficult to recover from a cold at a high altitude place.
  • Ascending slowly and avoiding strenuous activity is the best way to avoid altitude sickness.
  • Drinking plenty of water is a must as dehydration makes high altitude sickness a lot worse.
  • If you can, avoiding drinking alcohol and smoking during your travels to Tibet because these will cause dehydration and will affect you more than drinking or smoking usually does at lower altitudes.
  • Eat light food rich in carbohydrates like vegetables and local Zanba, and drink buttered tea.
  • Ask your doctor if you can get prophylaxis medications to start taking a week in advance. They are very helpful for coping with the altitude problem.

What are the must-see attractions in Tibet?

1. Mount Everest Base Camp

Mt. Everest is the highest mountain in the world, and certainly one of the most famous mountains. Going up to Everest Base Camp on the Tibet side allows travelers to see the summit without the need for days of hard trekking. If you’d rather skip the trek, a tour bus can drive you up to the base.

Waking up early morning to see the sunrise lighting the crest of the Himalayas is something no words can describe. Watching the king of all mountains and imagining for a short moment yourself there - at the top of the world - is an incredible feeling!

What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet - Breathe Travel
2. Potala Palace

As a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Dalai Lama's former residence, the Potala Palace symbolizes Tibetan Buddhism and plays a significant role in the traditional administration of Tibet. With various sculptures, stupas, almost 10,000 painted scrolls and nearly 700 murals and artifacts, it certainly is one of sightseeing highlights during your trip. You will find so much history and culture to be absorbed in this special place.

What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet - Breathe Travel
3. Jokhang Temple

Jokhang Temple is another UNESCO World Heritage Site and means “House of the Buddha”, it is the holiest site in Tibetan Buddhism. Watch pilgrims prostrate themselves on the ground while saying their prayers. It’s also a beautiful site to see, and you will no doubt be deeply moved by their devotion.

What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet - Breathe Travel
4. Lake Namtso

Namtso, meaning “Heavenly Lake” in Tibetan, is the second largest saltwater lake in China. The lake is truly stunning, and especially in clear weather, the water is a beautiful share of turquoise and the snow-capped Nyenchen Tanglha mountains standing vibrantly in the background. It makes for spectacular pictures and should not be missed by any visitors.

What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet - Breathe Travel
5. Sera Monastery

Sera Monastery means “Wild Roses Monastery” and is one of the biggest monasteries in Lhasa. The attractive point is to watch the Monks debating from 3pm to 4:30 pm. Debating is an integral part of a Tibetan monk’s training. It’s an effective means of expanding the mind, increasing mental sharpness, and gaining internal clarity. It’s an interesting place to experience.

What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet - Breathe Travel

Tibet is a mysterious and wonderful place where you can witness timeless religion, people and landscapes. Come and explore it by yourself.

For more information, check out the Tibet Vista Travel Brochure here.

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What You Need to Know When Planning on Visiting Tibet - Breathe Travel

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