Namtso Lake, literally meaning Heavenly Lake in Tibetan Language, is one of the most beautiful Lakes in China. It keeps attracting crowds of tourists and photographers to view and record its incredible beauty. Check the location and transportation information about Namtso to make a smooth tour.
How to Get to Namtso Lake: Location, Map & Transportation
Where is Namtso Lake
Geographically speaking, Namtso Lake borders between Damxung County of Lhasa and Baingoin County of Nagchu, about 240km to north Lhasa City and 230km to southwest Nagchu City. It resembles a huge mirror surrounded by Gangdise Mountains in the south, Nyenchen Tanglha Mountains in the east, rolling hills in the north and the grassland in the southeast. With a length of 70km, width of 30km and depth of 35km, Namtso Lake is the largest salt lake in Tibet and the second largest salt lake in China.
How to Get to Namtso Lake
Without any available airport, railway station or public bus station in Namtso and nearby, driving is the only transportation to Namtso Lake. There are some buses operated by the travel agencies run between Namtso Lake and Lhasa, but most of them only stop in the lakeside and you have to walk into the Tashi Peninsula – the important attraction in Namtso. For foreigner travelers, you have to book a tour from a travel agency.
Lhasa to Namtso Transfer
Lhasa is the best starting point of Tibet tour chosen by most tourists. With frequent Lhasa flights and available Lhasa trains, Lhasa can be reached easily from many major cities, including Beijing, Xian, Shanghai, Chengdu, Chongqing etc. Moreover, Lhasa itself is a very popular tourist destination and a short stay in Lhasa will be helpful to reduce the risk of high altitude sickness in Namtso. The road connecting Lhasa and Namtso Lake is in good condition. It is made of two sections – part of G109 National Highway (Qinghai Tibet Road) and winding uphill road. It takes about 3.5 hours to get to Damxung County from Lhasa through G109, and about 2 hours from Damxung to Namtso Lake Scenic Area. The whole journey takes 5~6 hours. On the way, you can feast your eyes on the continuous peaks, boundless prairie, magnificent Qinghai Tibet Railway, flocks of yaks and sleeps as well as the tents of the local Tibetan.
Nagchu to Namtso Transfer
Located about 220km from Namtso, Nagchu is also chosen as a place to start Namtso tour by a few tourists. Though it’s not popular as Lhasa, Nagchu enjoys great prairie view. Most tourists like to visit there at Horse Racing Fair and Archery Festival. All trains to Lhasa will pass through Nagchu Railway Staion, and some tourists will get off in Nagchu Railway Station and travel to Namtso Lake directly. Also driving along G109 National Highway (in anti-direction), it takes 3 hours to Damxung County firstly and another 2 hours to Namtso Lake. Transferring to Namtso from Nagchu, you need to spend about 5 hours on the journey. There are very beautiful landscapes on the road as well.
Travel with TibetDiscovery
TibetDiscovery is a local based travel agency provides superior tour to every tourist who travels in Tibet. Traveling with us, you are assured to use the highest quality vehicles available and get to the destination as swiftly and smoothly as possible. There will be enough space for you and your luggage. Moreover, you will enjoy the freedom and flexibility to stop on the way for sightseeing or photograph. All cars are equipped with skilled and reliable drivers who have many years of driving experience in Tibet.
In addition to the convenient transportation and worry-free transfer, our travel consultants will customize a tour, apply all needed permits and book the flight/train for you in advance. During journey, your local professional travel guide will be at your side and help you enjoy a wonderful journey. Contact us to start your Tibet discovery now!
Warm Tips for Namtso
1. Necessary Permits: To visit Namtso Lake, you only have to obtain the Tibet Travel Permit (Tibet Entry Permit), issued by Tibet Tourism Bureau. Travelers can’t apply for the permit on their own. You have to let a China Travel Agency to apply for the permit on behalf of you. It usually needs about 15~20 days to obtain the permit.
2. High Altitude Sickness Tip: The altitude of Namtso is 4,718m (15,475ft) and the highest altitude on the way you will experience is 5,190m (17,028ft). It is suggested that tourists spend several days in Lhasa first as acclimatization for the high altitudes, or it is very usual for tourists to get high altitude sickness in Namtso, especially at night.
3. Best Time to Visit: The best seasons for Namtso Lake is June to September when the weather and temperature are very pleasant and the scenic area offers more choices of food and accommodation. During the winter (Nov. ~ Feb.), Namtso will be closed for maintenance.
4. Food & Accommodation: There are limited restaurants and accommodation in Namtso, and they might be quite expensive. You’d better bring some food and snacks with you.
More Namtso Lake Travel Guide
Recommended Namtso Lake Tour Packages
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