For many travelers, Tibet is a far-away place with unique religion and mysterious culture. The land has high altitude and complex terrains, but it is actually a safe place to visit, just like other popular destinations on the planet. You just need to pay attention to some issues, such as altitude sickness. Let’s check the following top issues about safe travel in Tibet.
1. Is It Safe to Travel to Tibet this Year after Covid-19?
Yes, Tibet is generally safe to visit as long as you pay attention to self-protection. Tibet is a vast land with a high altitude, and its attractions are scattered in different areas. So many of the attractions especially those in remote western Tibet are not crowded by tourists. It is relatively safe to travel in these sparsely populated areas.
It is recommended to get vaccinated before you visit Tibet, to reduce the severity of your symptoms in case you get infected. Also, it is suggested to wear a mask when you are in public places and visit the monasteries and palaces in the downtown area.
2. Is It Safe to Travel to Tibet Alone?
Yes. It is safe to travel to Tibet alone, even if you are a female. International tourist needs to join an organized tour, either in a private or group tour. Therefore, for solo traveller, you will be accompanied by your guide, or other group members during the trip. Even when you are alone in Tibet, you are relatively safe. The public security in Tibet is very good, and local Tibetans are mostly innocent and kind. You can travel to Tibet with confidence.
It is safe to travel to Tibet alone, even if you are a female.
3. How to Keep Safe from Altitude Sickness in Tibet?
Altitude sickness is one of the biggest concerns for tourists to travel to Tibet, but it is not that frightening in most cases. It is just a natural physiological reaction similar to motion sickness, and may not occur to everyone. It is common for you to experience symptoms such as headaches, chest tightness, loss of appetite, mild fever, dizziness, and fatigue.
Fortunately, for most people, these symptoms will gradually decrease after spending a few days in Lhasa, resulting in no effect on subsequent trips. Only if you do feel extremely uncomfortable and your symptoms worsen, you should get to see a doctor.
You can stay in Lhasa for a couple of days to get adapt to high alititude.
Nowadays, the medical conditions in Tibet are very good, and you can get timely medical treatment with the help of your local guide. To help manage altitude sickness in Tibet, here are some tips:
1) Take some medicine like Rhodiola Rosea for prevention in advance.
2) Avoid catching a cold, which will aggravate the symptoms of altitude sickness.
3) Drink enough water, but refrain from alcohol and coffee.
4) Get enough rest and refuse vigorous exercise at the plateau.
5) Do not take a shower for the first two or three days after arriving in Tibet.
6) When your symptom worsens, move to a lower altitude immediately.
4. Is the Road in Tibet Safe for Travel?
The road condition in Tibet is much better nowadays, with improvements in safety for travel. There are well-paved asphalt roads connecting main cities and attractions throughout Tibet. A notable example is the road from Lhasa to Gyirong Border, which follows the Friendship Highway and offers a broad and smooth travel experience. Even the route leading to the Everest Base Camp is no longer a gravel road.
On the other hand, aggressive driving is not permitted in Tibet. Numerous checkpoints and speed limit sections are in place along the routes. Given that these are mostly mountain roads, which tend to be relatively narrow, it is crucial to prioritize driving safety and exercise extra caution.
Well-paved road around Lake Manasarovar in Tibet
For first-time visitors to Tibet, we recommend avoiding traveling by car, as the roads in Tibet are complicated and only local experienced drivers can travel lightly. The drivers and guides we provide for tourists are all local Tibetans who possess familiarity with the road conditions and speed limits. Rest assured, traveling overland in Tibet with us is a safe option.
5. Is the Weather in Tibet Safe for Travel?
Although Tibet is situated at an average altitude of 4,000 meters, the weather here is not as terrible as you may assume. Throughout the year, the highest temperature in Tibet reaches around 25℃, while the lowest temperature reaches around -10℃. Only there is a large temperature difference between morning and evening. So there is no big problem for travelers to visit Tibet at any time of the year.
When travelling in Tibet, you just need to pay attention to some natural disasters like landslides and mudslides. Especially in summer, Tibet receives a large amount of rainfall, which may cause torrential flood, landslide, snowslide and mud-rock flow.
However, there is no need to panic, as the road maintenance in Tibet is well-managed. The regular tourist routes in Tibet have undergone thorough maintenance. By taking appropriate precautions, like checking the weather forecast before heading to mountainous areas, the likelihood of encountering natural disasters is rare.
6. Are the Local Tibetans Friendly to Foreign Tourists?
Most Tibetans in Tibet are devout Buddhists who are humble and kind-natured. They consider stealing and killing taboo. They are friendly towards foreign visitors and willingly offer assistance when needed. They are also known for their hospitality, making you feel at home when you visit their households.
Local Tibetans are friendly towards foreign visitors.
As long as you show respect for their religion and traditions while avoiding any violation of their customs, there is usually no danger. Your guide and driver, both local Tibetans, will guide what is acceptable and what should be avoided. If you are uncertain about any action you intend to take, it is advisable to consult your guide first.
7. Are There any Religious Taboos to Avoid in Tibet?
Tibet, a region renowned for its rich cultural and religious heritage, does indeed have specific religious taboos that visitors should respect. When traveling in Tibet, it is important to observe proper etiquette and avoid engaging in actions that may offend religious sensibilities. Here are some guidelines to follow:
1) Don't make loud noises in the temple, or touch the Buddha statue with your hands;
2) Don't put your arm around the shoulders of Tibetans and touch their heads;
3) Locals are forbidden to kill and don't eat dog meat, horse meat, or donkey meat, some places don't eat fish meat;
4) Don't step on the threshold when entering the door;
5) When you see Mani piles, stupas, and temples, you should go around from left to right, and the direction of the kora should be around clockwise;
6) Greet Tibetans with both hands when they offer you tea, and bow to accept when offer you Hada.
It is important to observe proper etiquette when visit a temple in Tibet.
8. Is It Safe to Trek in Tibet?
In Tibet, there are numerous well-developed trekking routes that many tourists can undertake as a challenge. For shorter trekking routes, such as the Everest Base Camp Trek or the Ganden to Samye Trek, there is no need to stay in tents. During these treks, it is important to be cautious of falling rocks and slippery terrain.
For longer distance routes like the Gama Valley trek, we will arrange dedicated porters to carry your luggage. Additionally, the guide will handle the camping arrangements, ensuring that the campsites are located in the safest and most sheltered areas to guarantee warmth and comfort. Along the trekking route of Mount Kailash, there are temples available for accommodation, alleviating any concerns about camping safety for tourists.
9. Is There a Risk of Wild Animal Attacks in Tibet?
Tibet, with its diverse and breathtaking natural landscapes, is home to various wildlife species. However, the risk of wild animal attacks is minimal.
The wild animals in Tibet generally maintain a natural distance from humans, and they generally do not pose a threat to people, especially when traveling in groups or vehicles. Even while trekking, the chances of facing an animal attract remain extremely low.
The risk of wild animal attacks is minimal in Tibet.
It’s important to respect their space and avoid provoking or cornering them, as such situations can lead to potential conflicts. Exercise caution and maintain a safe distance to ensure a harmonious coexistence with the wildlife of Tibet.
10. Is It Safe to Travel in Tibet for the Elderly and Kids?
Actually, there is no age limit to travel to Tibet. But for tourists who are too young or too old, you should pay extra attention. Tibet is in a high-elevation area, being cold and lack of oxygen, and the weather changes quickly, so people with poor health conditions will feel difficult to adaption.
It is normally safe to enjoy a Tibet family tour with kids.
But many seniors or young kids of our clients also have had a pleasant and safe journey in Tibet. So it is suggested to listen to the advice of your doctor, or have a physical examination before you head to Tibet. And it is recommended to visit some lower-altitude places in Tibet, like Lhasa, Shigatse, Nyingchi, and so on.
To sum up, travelling in Tibet is relatively safe nowadays. For group tours, our drivers and guides will ensure your safety throughout the trip; for solo traveler, the social security in Tibet has also improved greatly. If you encounter safety problems or dangers, you can turn to your driver and guide; or turn to the local police. If you choose our tour itinerary, we will guarantee your travel safety and let you enjoy the beautiful scenery of Tibet with peace of mind.