There are Four Major things you will need to know about getting into Tibet
1. Permit: You will need a Tibet Tourism Bureau (TTB) permit to be able to enter Tibet by plane, train or bus by land. For this you will need to go through a travel agent and HimalayanWindows is always at your service to make your plan successful at a very reasonable budget.
2. Traveling from Mainland China: Traveling Tibet via Mainland China, you will need issue Chinese Tourist Visa earlier to process the permit; while sending your passport copy to the agent, you must send your China visa copy. The permit will be sent to your address in China (Not your home country) before you depart for Lhasa; you will be required to send a proper address in China before you fly to train to Lhasa.
3. Traveling from Kathmandu: Travel Tibet via Kathmandu, Nepal, Embassy of China in Kathmandu does not issue individual visa to any travelers going to Tibet. The Embassy issues Group Paper Visa only after receiving Invitation or Confirmation Letter from Tibet Tourism Bureau (TTB). If you turned up with a Chinese visa already in your passport, it will be cancelled (Prefer traveling from Mainland China if you do not want to cancel your China visa in your passport). A group visa is separate sheet of paper with all the names and passport numbers of the group members. It is important to get your own individual group visa (a ‘group’ can as small as one person), as otherwise come the end of your tour in Lhasa, you will either have to exit China with your companion or split from the group visa with additional cost and hassle. Inform the travel agent about your plan after Lhasa while making a booking plan and allow at least 2-3 working days in Kathmandu for group visa procedure.
4. Gateways: You can enter Tibet either from Mainland China or Kathmandu by flight or land/road. Many visitors to Tibet will transit through Either Beijing/Chengdu or Kathmandu. Traveling from Mainland China, you can either take flight or train to Lhasa. Make sure that you are with your original permits before boarding on to Lhasa. The original permit is couriered by your travel agent at your address in China (Not at your home); it is important to send your exact address in China including phone number and room number of the hotel you stay.
Traveling in Tibet is not as difficult as you would think- at least once you have worked your way around the latest Tibet permit update and have acclimatized to the altitude. It is important to book a trip with a travel agent and the tour needs to be properly organized.
When to Go
Spring, early summer and late autumn are probably the best times to visit Tibet. March is politically sensitive month and every year in March, Tibet is remaining closed for years. April to May brings reliable weather in eastern Tibet including Mount Everest. From July through the end of September the monsoon starts to affect some parts of Tibet. Traveling western Tibet becomes slightly more difficult, the roads to the east are temporarily washed out and friendship highway (also called; Araniko highway) sometimes becomes impassable on the Nepal side or on the Kodari border itself. In 2017, organizing press meet by the Chinese authority, another border crossing (Kerung/Kyirong) has opened to the international travelers and can be used to enter Tibet. However, the road condition at Nepal side still yet to be improved.
Mount Kailash Mansarovar tour can be undertaken from April to October, although August, September and October are considered the best months. October is also best time to make a trip out to the east. Lhasa and its surroundings don’t get really cold until the end of November.
However, it’s worth trying to make your trip with one of the Tibet’s festivals. New Year (Losar) in January and February is an excellent time to be in Lhasa, Saga Dawa Festival (Full Moon) in April/May or Shoton Festival in August. Check Festivals in Tibet for more details to make your trip more fun.