Tibet is indeed a very rich and beautiful land, located on the highest plateau on Earth at an average altitude over 4000 meter. It is nowadays the South west frontier of China. Within its borders there are more than fifteen peaks above 7000 m. among which eleven are over 8000m. It borders with Sichuan, Yunnan, Qinghai and Xinjiang; in the North, Nepal, India, Sikkim, Bhutan Burma and Kashmir form its Southern borders. The Tibet Autonomous Region with a population of over two million covers an area of 1.2 million sq. km.
Tibet has a long and complex history, written records have survived from the 7th Century A.D. however it is known that nomadic tribes populated Tibet as early as the 2nd Century B.C. and discoveries suggest a much longer history of human kind…More recent times have seen the invasion of China in 1959 and the inevitable dilution of Tibetan culture. Tibet however has proved over the years since, that its way of life has been able to withstand this influence. Power of thought and life itself overcoming the modern ravages of politics.
From Kathmandu, your journey the huge backbone of the High Himalayas to land deep in the heart of the Tibetan plateau. A further two hours drive by road through barren wilderness Lhasa, the capital and home to the famous Potala Palace unfolds. Lhasa remains the major focus of Buddhist worship anywhere in the world, a place for the traveler to cast away any preconceptions he or she may have and join in Tibet’s journey of discovery along the way… at least for a while.
Only tour groups are officially allowed to enter into Tibet. But another option to enter Tibet you need a valid Chinese visa and align travel permit. You won’t obtain the Chinese visa if you apply to go to Tibet (state any place except Tibet in the visa application form). You want to go to China, and need a valid visa to China. If you are willing to obtain your visas in Kathmandu also possible, you should arrive in Kathmandu at least a week prior to departure to Tibet. The visas can also be arranged within a day paying emergency charge. Please be sure that the Chinese Embassy in Kathmandu will open for visa application from 10 to 11 AM only 3 days in a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday).
Kathmandu and Chengdu Gongkar Airport, Tibet.
(1) Zhangmu (2) Simikot (Nepal) -Khojarnath-Purang (3) Golmud – Lhasa (4) Kashgar- Yecheng – West Tibet (5) India- Lipu Lek Pass – Purang – Kailash.
There are some other entry points too but entering from any checkpoint, the tourists need special align permit for Tibet.
Travel is possible at all times of year but from April to October is the best season. Since Tibet has high altitude in average of above 13000 feet above the sea level winter becomes cold with little snow except in few few areas. The sun shines brightly and cold air blows. The temperature comes up (25 to 30° C.) and gets warm but not hot in the summer still the sun can be very strong. In Central & Western Tibet there is small rains in June to August and specially the summer and autumn are dry.
|January||+9 to -13||0.2||251|
|March||+10 to -12||0.5||226|
|April||+16 to +1||5.0||244|
|May||+20 to +5||25.0||284|
|June||+25 to +9||77.0||227|
|July||+26 to +10||129.0||224|
|August||+27 to +9||138.0||221|
|September||+21 to +9||56.0||238|
|October||+17 to +1||8.0||285|
|November||+12 to +7||2.0||271|
|December||+18 to 013||0.5||261|
2.3 million (Tibetan, since the occupation an increasing number of Han Chinese)
Language Tibetan, Chinese, some English
People in Tibet are very friendly and Buddhism is the religion. Dalai Lama is the highest being in the world, holy and most revered among the people in Tibet. People are devoted in the religion. Tibetan people are rich in culture and tradition.
Even there are many Chinese/Tibetan restaurants in Zhangmu, Nyalam and Shegar, food are comparatively poor and so if you are taking a tours to Lhasa some dry food items are recommended. You can also bring cup, spoon along with tea/instant soup as every guesthouse / hotel provides hot water in thermos. While you are in Shigatse and Lhasa all kind of foods are available. If you are taking trips outside, you should bring enough food as it is quite difficult to get in other parts of Tibet. In this regard we provide all the supplies and staff from Kathmandu in all our trekking group.
Traveling in Tibet involves high altitude and can be strenuous. Clients with heart and lung problems or blood diseases should consult their doctor before booking the trip. Very rare cases of altitude sickness have been reported. Simple headache; fever, loss of appetite or stomach disorders can happen before the acclimatization. Some advice: drink approx. 3 liters of water per day, do not strain yourself, move slowly, breathe deeply and take regular rests.
From Oct. to March warm clothes are required due to c- old and from April to September only light clothes will be enough. However, a jacket and a sweater are advised through out the year as the weather may unexpectedly change at any time. The recommend items are: A domestic first aid kit, water purification tablets, toilet and tissue papers, flashlight, sleeping bag, comfortable walking shoes, dust masks, utility knife, sun hat, sun glasses, suntan lotion and a limited number of clothes.
Tibet is rich in mineral resources, but still its economy has remained underdeveloped. Surveys of the Kailas and Ma-fa-mu-ts’o districts in western Tibet conducted in the 1930s and ’40s discovered extensive goldfields and large deposits of borax, as well as reserves of radium, iron, titanium, lead, and arsenic. Subsequent investigative teams dispatched in the 1950s by the Academia Sinica (Chinese Academy of Sciences) reported the existence of a huge variety of minerals and ores. The most significant of these include a belt of iron-ore deposits located on the western bank of the Mekong River stretching for almost 25 miles south of Ch’ang-tu; graphite obtained from Ning-chin and coal reported to be plentiful around Ch’ang-tu; deposits of iron ore in concentrated seams of high quality and extractable depth found in the T’ang-ku-la Mountains on the Tibet-Tsinghai border; and oil-bearing formations, a reserve of oil shales, and lead, zinc, and manganese. The most valuable woodland is the Khams district, though extensive forest-clad mountains are also found in the Sutlej Valley in the southwest and in the Ch’u-mu-pi Valley in the far south. In the late 1950s some 30 kinds of trees, including those of economic value such as varnish trees, spruce, and fir, were discovered; and the estimated total of forest timber resources in the Khams area alone was placed at more than 3,510,000,000 cubic feet (100,000,000 cubic meters).
The swift-flowing rivers and mountain streams have enormous hydroelectric power potential, totaling about one-third of all China’s potential hydroelectric resources. Especially promising are the Brahmaputra, Lhasa, and Ni-yang-ch’ü rivers. The coal deposits and forests represent possible sources of thermal power production, and there are vast opportunities for geothermal, solar, and Elian power production.
There is no prohibition on still and video cameras, tape recorders or radios as long as they are registered with a custom official. Printed matters considered unsuitable by the Chinese Government are prohibited, Customs regulations forbid the ex- port of art objects created prior to 1959 or souvenirs in amounts deemed to be excessive. There is only one airport in Tibet and only one international flight to Kathmandu, Nepal is in operation.