Tibet enchants tourists from China and abroad with its landscape, religious traditions, culture, and its unsolved mysteries. At any mention of this land, the images of snowy mountains, mirror-like lakes, Potala Palace and Buddhist disciples immediately come to mind.
Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) occupies one eighth of the China’s territory. Due to its high altitude, it is often called the 'Roof of the World' and the 'Third Pole of the Earth'. It boasts the world's highest peak, the splendid Mt. Everest, and the Tibetan Plateau, where the Yangtze River and Yellow River both begin.
History and Religion
The history of Tibet can be traced back by about 4,000 years, during which the Buddhist religion, Zang Language and culture are shaped up. Most of local inhabitants practice Tibetan Buddhism and Bon. They maintain many unique practices, such as pilgrimage prostration and sky burial, where the bodies of the dead are exposed to birds of prey. Potala Palace, Jokhang Monastery and Toling Monastery are among the most famous Buddhist temples.
Language and Culture
Most young and middle-aged people have command of two languages, their own Tibetan language and Mandarin. The people living in this vast land are mainly Tibetan, an ethnic group with bold and uninhibited characteristics. Most live a pastoral lifestyle, earning a living by raising yaks, farming, as well as by making crafts. Some cultural highlights include the thangka, a style of Buddhist painting on cotton or silk applique, herb medicine, and local operas. Tibetans also celebrate various festivals, such as Tibetan New Year, the Shoton Festival, the Monlam Prayer festival, the Butter Lamp Festival, and the Saga Dawa Festival.
See more about People & Life, Tibetan Festivals.
It is extremely difficult for non-Chinese citizens to travel independently in Tibet. There are various restrictions on foreign tourists. All foreign travelers are required to join an organized tour operated by authorized travel agencies. Diplomats, journalists, and government officials are not allowed to enter alone or with a tour group. There are also many areas closed to foreign travelers, like the areas near China’s border and military bases.
Tibet Travel Permit
A travel permit is required for every foreign traveler. The only way to obtain a permit is to book a tour package with an authorized travel agency in China, which can help apply for the Travel Permit through the local tourism bureau. No travel agency can provide "permit-only" service, and overseas tourists must book their tours with a private vehicle, driver and tour guide. Citizens of all nationalities can apply for the travel permit.
In recent years, the local transportation transportation has improved drastically, particularly so with the completion of the Qinghai-Tibet railway. The Lhasa Gonggar Airport also operates flights to the first-tire cities of China, such as Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Xi’an. A few international flights are also available.
Travel Advisory & Tips
1. High Altitude: The Tibetan Plateau’s elevation can reach about 2 miles (3,000 meters) above sea level. As a result, tourists will be exposed to stronger ultraviolet radiation, increasing the risk of sunburn. The high elevation also means that the air is thinner, which can result in altitude sickness in those who are not acclimatized to less oxygen. Travelers are strongly advised to bring sunscreen and medication for altitude sickness.
2. Extreme Weather: The extreme climate makes Tibet one of the world’s harshest places to live. Although its summers are cool, winters are viciously cold, and the differences between daytime and nighttime temperatures can be vast. Travelers are strongly advised to prepare appropriate clothing according to the season they are traveling in. Summer and autumn, from June to October, are considered to be the best times to visit.
3. Religious Etiquettes and Taboos: Tashi Delek is a common greeting phrase, which means “Good Luck”. And presenting a Hada or Khata, a type of silk scarf to local people is also regarded as a practice to show respect, give blessings, and hospitality. Travelers are also advised to observe local taboos when visiting monasteries. Spitting, talking loudly, as well as touching, walking over, and sitting on sacred objects are considered taboos. According to the Buddhist custom, one must always walk clockwise around shrines, stupas, Mani stones and prayer wheels or risk bad luck. >>more Tibet Tours
Tibet is the referred real Shangri-La, the forbidden land, the roof of the world and the holy land of your innermost desire. Snow mountains and grasslands, scattered herds of yak and nomads on the plateau, spectacular monasteries and unsophisticated smiles, tranquil lake and transparent blue sky, all can be seen on this magic land. Tibet is a province of natural wonder, a treasury of cultural relics and a destination of attractive adventure.
Located on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau at the southwest frontier of China, Tibet covers an area of 1.2 million sq km which is 4,000 meters above sea level at an average and has over 50 peaks more than 7,000 meters. So it known as the 'the roof of the world' or 'the third pole on the globe'. Geographically, Tibet can be divided into three parts: the east, south and north. The eastern part is virgin forest region, the northern part is open grassland, and the southern part is the one for agriculture. And administratively, Tibet is divided into one municipality and six prefectures, with Lhasa its municipality and Shigatse, Ngari, Shannan, Chamdo, Nagqu as well as Nyingchi. The major cities and towns such as Lhasa, Shigatse, Gyantse and Tsedang located in the central and southern area...
Top Tibet Travel, though not the largest company around, we are among the most experienced around. Our office managers have been working in tourism in Tibet for over 20 years and know all areas of Tibet extremely well.
The company was started by local Tibetans, most of whom had been working for over 20 years already as tour guides, managers, and route builders. We can work with you to create the perfect itinerary suited specifically for you.
Unlike many travel agencies that arrange tours to Tibet, we are not based in Beijing, Chengdu or Shanghai. We are based right in the heart of Lhasa, less than a 5 minute walk from Barkhor Square. All of our office staff, guides and drivers are Tibetans who are intimately familiar with Tibetan culture, language and religion. This gives us an advantage over most companies arranging travel to Tibet.
Our company is not out just to make money. Our goal is to give back to as many poor Tibetan communities as possible. Several of our office staff are from remote, poor villages at the base of the Himalaya Mountains. A portion from each tour goes towards projects that we carry out in these communities.
We guinuinely care about everyone who walks through the doors of our office. Stop by and grab a hot cup of butter tea with us!
inquiry Tibet Travel,
Tel: +86-139-8999-8118 Jill
Tibet Travel Tips & FAQs
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