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Is Tibet Open to Tourists? Know These 5 Insider Facts to Make A Good Choice

Last Update: September 22, 2023

What is the current situation for Tibet tours? Is Tibet open for travel in 2023/2024? Can I visit Tibet this year? Are all regions of Tibet accessible? These are common questions that often confuse tourists when planning a trip to Tibet. In this article, we will provide clarity on these inquiries and assist you in making an informed decision.

Fact 1: Tibet is Now Open to Tourists Worldwide

Tibet has now reopened to tourists from around the world following the pandemic. For foreign tourists, you can now book your Tibet tour with us. We offer a wide collection of Tibet small group tours that cater to the diverse needs of different individuals.

Visit Tibet in GroupWe offer a selection of small groups tours to Tibet.

To ensure a smooth and hassle-free travel experience, it is highly recommended to plan and book your trip well in advance. The first step is to determine where you want to go and what you want to see. If you find this process overwhelming or confusing, our team of travel consultants is readily available to assist you.

Whether you are seeking a quick trip to Lhasa or an extensive tour to take in the wonders of Mount Kailash, we guarantee the best prices, the highest quality tours, and unparalleled experiences throughout your journey in the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR).

Fact 2: Tibet is Open for Most Time of the Year

Tibet is generally accessible to international tourists for most of the year, with only a few instances when it temporarily closes its doors.

The regular closure occurs during Losar, which is the Tibetan New Year. Each year, typically starting from mid-February, entry to Tibet for foreign nationals is suspended, and it reopens again in April.

Tibetan New YearThe Tibetan New Year is a major festival of the Tibetan people.

The Tibetan New Year celebrations are a major part of the religious culture of the Tibetan people and are the most important ceremony in the region. The closure during the Losar period varies slightly as the dates are determined by the Tibetan calendar, which changes annually.

Fact 3: Most Regions of Tibet are Open, Except for Some Remote Areas

While the majority of Tibet is now open for tourism, there are still certain parts that remain inaccessible to tourists. These regions typically have harsh weather conditions and extreme climates, making it challenging for human life without specialized equipment.

These regions, predominantly located in the northern parts of Tibet, specifically in Nagqu and Ngari prefectures at high altitudes, pose challenges for travel and are nearly inaccessible. However, the majority of Tibet's high-altitude plateau is welcoming to tourists, with only a few places that may require additional effort to reach.

Fact 4: Mount Kailash and Lake Namtso May Close in Winter

There are also areas in Tibet that are inaccessible during certain times of the year due to adverse weather conditions. When the plateau experiences extremely cold temperatures and heavy snowfall during winter, reaching places like Mount Kailash and Lake Namtso becomes nearly impossible.

In the northwestern region of Ngari Prefecture, Mount Kailash poses greater challenges for travelers from late December to mid-February. Although the roads to the mountain are now better maintained and rarely blocked, journeying to Mount Kailash becomes extremely difficult in winter as the passes along the route are often obstructed by snow.

Mount Kailash in WinterMount Kailash may be closed due to heavy snow and frozen cold in winter.

Likewise, Lake Namtso, located in Damxung County to the north, is frequently closed to visitors during the same winter months as Mount Kailash. While it is still possible to travel north to Damxung County, the pass over the Nyenchen Tanglha Mountains leading to the lake is often blocked in the depths of winter.

And as much as the lake is just as beautiful when frozen over in winter as it is when shimmering in the sunlight of summer, the intense cold of the area around the lake at this high altitude is not favorable for most tourists to the region.

Fact 5: You Need to Get the Tibet Travel Permit In Advance to Visit Tibet

Tibet is open to tourists both domestic and foreign. While for foreign tourists, the Tibet Travel Permit is a requirement for travel. Sometimes mistakenly called the “Tibet Visa”, the permit is not a visa at all, and is required for entry to the TAR and travel around the plateau.

The permit can only be obtained after you have booked a pre-arranged Tibet tour with a registered Tibetan travel agency. Your travel agency will help you to apply for the permit, using scanned copies of your valid passport and Chinese Visa. The processing time of the permit is normally 8 to 9 working days.

Tibet Travel Permit SampleA sample of Tibet Travel Permit we have obtained for our clients.

Traveling to Tibet without Tibet Travel Permit is not possible, as the permit is required to be shown at several points along the way. The first point would naturally be the check-in gate, before you board the flight to train to Tibet.

As the leading Tibet travel agency based in Lhasa, we have extensive experience in organizing Tibet tours and handling the necessary travel documents. We can guarantee the issuance of your Tibet Travel Permit, ensuring a worry-free journey to Tibet. Simply book your trip with us now and leave the permit application process to our capable hands


If you're considering a trip to Tibet this year or in the near future, it's a great time to start planning and booking your tour. Tibet is open to tourists from all around the world and welcomes visitors from different countries.

As a trusted tour operator based in Lhasa, we specialize in offering carefully designed small group tours that ensure a memorable experience on the plateau. Feel free to contact us for more information on the current status of tours to Tibet and let us assist you in planning an enjoyable trip.

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