Tibet is a land which is high up in the mountains with an elevation that is higher than most places.
Hence, Tibet has different seasons with the winter being the longest.
The different seasons are ideal for specific activities.
This guide will help you for your Tibet tour, depending on what type of person you are and what activities you prefer.
When is the Best time to visit Tibet? Contents
- 1 A brief look at the different travel seasons to visit Tibet
- 2 Best time to visit Tibet for best alpine scenery (April to May and September to October)
- 3 Best time to visit Tibet during its various religious festivals (May to Dec.)
- 4 Best time to visit Tibet for budget travellers (Late Oct, to mid-Feb next year)
A brief look at the different travel seasons to visit Tibet
Spring which is from April to May is when the ice melts.
The weather is warmer during this season, and thus suitable for people who don’t enjoy the cold as much or cannot handle the chilly climate due to physical reasons.
It is also not as hot, and so the atmosphere is pleasant.
One of the best parts of spring is the opening of the blocked remote roads, which helps visitors during this time enjoy the outer parts of Tibet, further from the capital of Lhasa.
Ensure you book way before this season as there is massive demand.
Summer is from June to August and the busiest season to travel.
Many travellers visit during this time as it is not as challenging physically or mentally which attracts everyone and anyone to enjoy Tibet’s beauty.
Oxygen is sufficient enough during this time and so not stressful to the bodies.
People who visit during this time especially during July to August will experience Tibet’s beauty in light showers of rain.
A delight for romantic couples and photographers!
Fall is from September to October, which is just about to enter the cold winters.
People who love to hike usually travel around this time to walk around the plains and heights of Tibet and take mesmerizing photos of the mountain peaks.
Winter falls in November till March which is for the visitors who are more able to sustain themselves to snow and physically able to enjoy the high peaks of Tibet.
Many people who only want to visit Lhasa, travel during this time as many roads tend to become too difficult to access.
Winters are far more affordable for tourists due to the lower demand to visit Tibet at this time. Ideal for budget travelers who want to visit Tibet badly but can’t cross a certain limit in expenditure.
February and March are closed for 5 to 6 weeks due to the extreme conditions in weather.
So plan yourselves accordingly.
Best time to visit Tibet for best alpine scenery (April to May and September to October)
Tibet is known for its alpine scenery, which consists of mountain peaks with attention-grabbing views and breathtaking lakes.
From the Tibetan monasteries in Lhasa to the turquoise Lake Manasarovar Lake near Mount Kailash you won’t stop complimenting the heavenly views.
During these months, it is advised to take the tours across Tibet.
For example, the Lhasa to Everest Base Camp, with chances of viewing Mount Kailash will fill your camera’s memory with sights many in the world only dream about.
The iconic summit of Mount Everest will remind you of everlasting beauty which you only see on the television.
Tibet does get misty, and thus during April to May and September to October it is ideal take the overland trip from Lhasa to Nepal as visibility is clearer.
These months are the safest for individuals who want to see as much as they can.
The roads are less slippery with more paths of Tibet being easily accessible.
Best time to visit Tibet during its various religious festivals (May to Dec.)
Tibet is the heartland of spirituality and traditional religious festivals which will awaken your inner soul.
There are plenty of reasons for the culturally inclined tourists to visit during the months of May to December.
The first major religious festival in Tibet during the year is the Saga Dawa festival.
It takes place in May and is primarily a dedication to April in the Tibetan calendar.
April in the Tibetan culture marks several auspicious events such as the birth of Sakyamuni, the month of Sakyamuni becoming Buddha and also attaining nirvana.
Tourists who flock during this time hear the Holy Scriptures being chanted along with a get together at Zongjolukang at the back of Red Hill where boating takes place along with music and dancing.
In June, The Shoton Festival shows visitors the traditional side of Tibet.
It lasts for 5 days and showcases impressive operas for the music lovers. Buddha paintings are also exhibited which is a treat to the eyes of art lovers. Tibet has graceful horses and yaks which are put up for display during this festival.
The Nagqu Horse Festival will bring the nomadic lifestyle of Tibetans into your life in August.
Roam around bazaars of fragrances of unique and distinct flavours, and don’t miss the Tibetan yak meat which is so tender you’ll want more.
The most important celebration is the Tibetan New Year also called Losar which is either in February or March.
It is a celebration of 15 days with festivities of a proper traditional local culture.
However, as a common practice, Tibet is closed to foreigners during this time.
Best time to visit Tibet for budget travellers (Late Oct, to mid-Feb next year)
From Late October to the middle of February, Tibet is as cold as ice, and hence a crowd is not expected.
The demand for the popular Tibet reduces tremendously as not many can face the brutal winters.
Thus to keep operations going prices drop at the lowest during this season.
Budget travellers can finally witness the marvel of Tibet at costs that won’t burden them.
There are several good deals from a cheap hotel stay, to affordable travel and spending that little extra saved on the delicious Tibetan delicacies.
However, winter leads to several roads being inaccessible and is best for visitors who want to explore the city life of Lhasa.
Tibet is a place waiting to be explored at any time during the year. From the spiritual travellers to the more adventure seeking hikers, Tibet has it all at different seasons.
Read more about how safe to travel to Tibet.
A guest post from Stephanie Lee.