ARRIVAL IN LHASA

Tibet is connected by railway line from Chengdu, Beijing, Xian, Xining and Shanghai. Air China, CSWA etc. operates flights between Kathmandu and Lhasa. This flight offers spectacular views of Mt. Everest, Mt. Makalu and many other Himalaya giants. We will organize your pick up once you reach Lhasa and drive you to your hotel.

VISA AND ENTRY PROCEDURE VIA KATHMANDU

For Tibet, we organize a group visa, and in order to do this we will need a copy of your passport at least 30 days in advance to the commencement of your trip. Tourism regulations in Tibet are subject to change without prior notice. As per current regulation Chinese Embassy issues visa on Monday, Wed and Fri in Kathmandu. Hence, we will need your original passport 1 day before the visa processing day.

VIA MAINLAND CHINA

Those entering Tibet from mainland China (Beijing, Shanghai, Chengdu, Xian, Guilin etc) have to get Chinese visa from their country (please ask us for the best way of doing it).

GROUP SIZE

Minimum 2 persons to operate the Tibet tours. Average age ranges from early 20s to mid 50s. If you would like to travel independently or with your friends, families and colleagues you are invited to choose any of the trips at your convenient time frame for any number of people (min 2 to max 100 at a time).

ACCOMMODATION

In Lhasa, accommodation can either be at 3 star, 4 star OR 5 star category hotels and these hotels are renowned for their hospitability and ethnic Tibetan ambience. Apart from Lhasa, along the route, accommodation will be at the best available hotels. If you would like to book a single room, please inform us in advance. A supplement charge will incur in that case. Rooms in the remote areas during the trip, cannot be booked in advance. Your guide books them on arrival. If rooms are not available at the specified guest house, the guide will book a room at another similar category guest house. No private rooms are available at the guesthouses. Only dormitory accommodation is available with 6 to 7 beds in a big hall. We shall try our best to provide the best accommodation available but please do keep in mind that you are taking an adventure tour and sometimes the arrangement may be basic. Traveling in Tibet is a fantastic experience but sometimes you have to put up with a bit of discomfort. To enjoy this trip you need to have an adventurous spirit and the ability to adapt to minor discomforts.

GUIDE

Throughout your time in Tibet you will be accompanied by an experienced English speaking Tibetan guide who will not only act as an interpreter but will also provide valuable insights into the Tibetan way of life.

FOOD

All breakfasts are included during your stays in the hotel. Other meals are served at the tourist class restaurants in between the trip. Your guide will help you find good restaurants with reasonable price. A must are the small Tibetan restaurants which serve authentic Tibetan food. You can try ethnic Tibetan cuisine. Have some Momos or Gyathok and wash it down with a cup of salted Tibetan butter tea. While on the road, lunch will be at one of the many Chinese tea shops along the way, which generally serve a variety of noodle and vegetable dishes and meat where available. 

TRANSPORTATION

We use the best private vehicle for the overland drive across the Tibetan highland. These vehicles are extremely sturdy, spacious and reliable and they make the journey as comfortable as possible.

COMMUNICATION

Communication facilities in Tibet have been improved over the past few years. These days, mobile phones works fine up to the Everest Base Camp. You can also have a roaming facility added to your mobile phone. If you buy a Chinese SIM card at the border, you could stay in touch with your family and friends most of the time.

BEST TIME TO TAKE TIBET TRIP

The best time of year to take the Tibet tour is from April to October. During these months the average temperature ranges from 15C to 25C, with blue skies and clear weather. Though from July to August there can be odd shower during the day. The nights, however, can be very cold and temperatures can drop below 0 degree Celsius.

CLOTHING & EQUIPMENT

During the day a light shirt or jumper and lightweight pants will be suitable, but a warm fleece or down jacket is recommended for the evenings.

PERSONAL EXPENSES

Besides Chinese Yuan, only US dollars can be accepted in Tibet. Also shops that accept American currency are very limited and you might not be able to get a good deal for an exchange rate. Credit cards can only be used at the hotels. The Bank of China also accepts credit cards. ATM is available in cities but, in some places out of the city. Exchanging your money to Chinese currency will be the best option for you, which can be done at the Bank of China. While changing money at the local money exchange centers, please make sure that you are accompanied by your guide and do consult him. There are many shops in Lhasa, Shigatse and Gyantse that sell traditional Tibetan handicrafts. We recommend you to bring extra money to spend on souvenirs. Tips are appreciated by your support team, after completion of the trip. The amount you give depends on your budget and appreciation of their work. For this you can allocate around 5% of your total tour cost.

HEALTH

Vaccination requirements change frequently, so we suggest you consult your doctor at least 2 months prior to your trip. The main health consideration in high altitude is Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). You may experience some mild symptoms initially, such as headache, lethargy, nausea and difficulty sleeping, but these should lessen within a few days. To avoid Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS), people take pills called ‘Diamox’. You can also use these pills after consulting with your doctor. A supply of bottled oxygen is carried in the vehicle at all times. Chinese doctors will also be available at places like Lhasa, Gyantse, Shigatse, and Shegar, to name a few. Our itinerary will allow your body to acclimatize properly and to handle the low oxygen rate.

RESCUE & EVACUATION

In case of a serious sickness or a casualty, which we hope will not happen, you shall be transferred to the nearest hospital. Since you are entirely liable for all the expenses incurred in evacuation, please make sure that it is covered by your insurance before assigning for it or be prepared to pay on your own after getting back to Kathmandu.

INSURANCE

Before joining a tour, we recommend you to take a travel insurance which should cover cancellation, medical expenses and emergency repatriation.

ITINERARY CHANGES

One should keep in mind that this is an adventure trip that takes you into one of the remotest corner of the Tibetan plateau, where many unforeseen events may contribute to the need for a change in the itinerary. Depending on the prevailing situation, the itinerary can be modified to some extent after consulting with your guide. However, the date of tour completion should always coincide with the original itinerary.

PEOPLE AND CULTURE

The Tibetans are classified as belonging to the Mongoloid family of people. They are probably descendents of a variety of nomadic tribes who migrated from the north and settled along sedentary cultivation of Tibet’s river valleys. The Tibetans living within the borders of present day Tibet are easily identified by their distinctive dialects, social customs and dress. The Topas live in the highland regions (Lato and Ngari), the Tsangpas in the West Tibet (Tsang), the Upas live in central Tibet, the Horpas comes from the north (Nagchu/Jangtang), the Kongpowas from the south, the Khampas live in the east, the Amdowa in the northeast, and the Gyarongwa in the extreme east. Travelers to Tibet inevitably find Tibetans to be friendly and possessing a great sense of humor. It is appreciated when you try and use Tibetan language when communicating with Tibetans. The further from Lhasa you travel, the more often Tibetan is used. Religion is extremely important to the majority of Tibetans, and travelers should endeavor to respect their customs and beliefs. Always circumambulate Buddhist religious sites or monastery in a clockwise direction, and when in a monastery do not wear a hat, smoke or touch frescoes. In addition, refrain from climbing onto statues, mane stones or other sacred objects. They are warm and friendly people. Some speak a bit of English and are happy to have a chat with you. Don't photograph people without permission and be aware that some locations prohibit photography without a fee.

FESTIVALS

Losar or “New Year” is celebrated in the month of February by the Tibetans. During Losar, Buddhist monks offer prayers for good health and prosperity at monasteries. People exchange various goods and gifts among them. Families organize feasts and perform dances. Saga Dawa (Buddha’s Birthday), celebrated on the 15th day of the fourth lunar month, is an occasion for outdoor operas and to see many pilgrims at the Jokhang Temple and Mount Kailash. Gyanste Damang (Gyantse Horse Racing and Archery), celebrated in May/June, honours the Tibetan marksmanship while riding at full tilt. Horse riding and archery competitions are held during this festival. Samye Dholdhe Festival is celebrated in the month of June, as pilgrims and monks from distant monasteries journey to Samye to watch masked dances and obtain blessings of Buddha. Zabling Chi Sang (World Incense Day) is a special day dedicated to pray for peace in the world. Ganden Khi-khu (Ganden Thangka Festival) is celebrated in July to honor the founder of the Gelugpa sect. Karma Durba (Bathing Week) is celebrated in August/ September. During the festival, the Lhasans flock to the waters of the Kyi Chu River which literally means “Changing the stars” in the belief that if they bathe all week, they will drive evil spirits from their bodies and enjoy good health in the following year.

TRIP EXTENSIONS

In addition to Tibet tour, we can organize trip extensions both within Nepal and other neighboring countries. You may want to try white water rafting or go on a jungle safari in the deep jungles of Chitwan or take a cultural tour. You may as well take a trip to India or Bhutan, whichever appeals more to you.