Traveling Nepal and Tibet together is simple and easy if you know clear about following 6 Most Important Things to Know about Nepal Tibet Tour. Since you can’t visit Tibet independently, you have to make a plan in advance and inquiry a China travel agency to arrange travel services for you, such as tour guide, vehicle, permit application, etc.
How to Plan a Nepal Tibet Tour 2024/2025
From Nepal to Tibet or from Tibet to Nepal?
Travel from Nepal to Tibet
1) You don’t have to obtain a regular Chinese Visa which has to be issued months before your trip. The China Embassy in Kathmandu ensures Tibet Group Visa which is a special single-entry visa allows foreign travelers to enter Tibet by overland trip or flight. Usually it take about 3~5 days to obtain the group visa; 2) Nepal offers the quickest transportation to Tibet. From Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, travelers only have to drive about 160km to reach Gyirong Port on the border. Crossing the port, travelers can travel to Mount Everest, Mount Kailash, Shigatse, Gyantse, Lhasa, Namtso, etc.
Travel from Tibet to Nepal
1) If you already have a Chinese visa, you can finish you trip in China's other regions first, then go to take your tour in Tibet. After your Tibet tour, you can directly leave for Nepal. The Chinese Visa usually allows longer trip in China. While the Group Visa only allows a trip around a month in China, including Tibet; 2) If you worry about high altitude sickness, you are suggested to travel from Tibet to Nepal because you can have plenty of time for acclimatization for the high altitude before getting to the Mount Everest and border area. Lhasa has an average altitude around 3700m, which is the best environment to adjust your body to the high altitude and thick air. While the altitude of Kathmandu is only around 1400m.
Kathmandu Durbar Square
Lhasa Potala Palace
Which Destinations Should I Visit Most
The Kathmandu Lhasa overland route is full of things to do. The drive route itself is a classic tourist itinerary which connects many of most popular destinations in both Tibet and Nepal. Following are top destinations you can’t miss for you Nepal Tibet trip:
1. Lhasa (Tibet) – Lhasa is the No. 1 destination in Tibet as well as the starting point of most Tibet tour. It is famous as the spiritual center of Tibetan Buddhism. Top attractions include Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street, Sera Monastery, Namtso Lake, etc. It usually needs 2~3 days to visit Lhasa. Learn more >
2. Yamdrok Lake (Tibet) – as one of Three Holy Lakes in Tibet, Yamdrok is the first highlight you will see after the overland trip from Lhasa to Kathmandu starts. It is also one of the most beautiful places in Tibet. Learn more >
3. Gyantse (Tibet) – this small town is located along the road from Lhasa to Shigatse. It used to play an important role in the history of Tibet. Though as a small place, it has many things to do. You can plan a day for two days trip here. The highlights are Palcho Monastery, Dzong, and Pala Manor. Learn more >
4. Shigatse (Tibet) – as the second largest city in Tibet, Shigatse offers great accommodation and food. It has one of the most influential monasteries in Tibet – Tashilhunpo Monastery, the official palace of Panchen Lamas. Usually you only have to stay a night here. Learn more >
5. Lhatse (Tibet) – Lhatse is located along the road from Shgatse to Mount Everest. If you want to break the long driving between Mount Everest and Shigatse, you can stay here for a night, and take a visit to Sakya Monastery.
6. Mount Everest (Tibet) - Mt. Everest, the top of the World, is the must-go destination of your life journey. As the goal achievement of many mountaineers, it shows the most beautiful natural beauty in the world, including perennial snow, amazing sunrise and sunset, dazzling starry sky etc. Learn more >
7. Mount Kailash (Tibet) - Mount Kailash is located in the remote Ngari of Tibet. Literally meaning mountain of God, Mount Kailash is a holy mountain worshiped by four influential religions. Like a tradition, every single year, a large number of Buddhist believers from all over the world traveling far here to kora around Kailash. Apart from its religious influence, the nature of the snow-capped mountain is also worth-seeing. To cover Mount Kailash in your trip, you have to plan 5~6 more days. Learn more >
8. Kathmandu (Nepal) - Kathmandu, the vibrant capital city of Nepal, sits at the heart of Kathmandu Valley consisting of three historic, artistic and cultural cities named Kathmandu, Bhakatpur and Patan. Called city of Temples and palaces, Kathmandu is the holy land for you to discover the abundant culture and grand natural beauty.
9. Pokhara (Nepal) - Pokhara is one of the most popular travel destination, also the second largest city in Nepal. The city is approximately 200km away from west Kathmandu (5~6 hours' driving distance). Compared to the hustle and bustle of Kathmandu, Pokara is much peaceful and relaxing. It offers many marvelous experiences here.
10. Chitwan - Chitwan is the most popular destination for tourists wanting to have a good experience of the region’s wildlife. A survey showed nearly 92% percent of travelers who had been to Nepal visited this park. It was list in World Heritage Sites in 1984.
Jokhang Monastery in Lhasa
Holy Namtso Lake
Palcho Monastery in Gyantse
Rongbuk Monastery on Mount Everest
Swayambhunath Temple in Kathmandu
From Nepal to Tibet or from Tibet to Nepal?
The destinations decide when the best time to visit Tibet and Nepal is. Generally speaking, Tibet has a more complicated weather condition. Some of the destinations in Tibet, such as Mount Everest, Mount Kailash, Namtso Lake, etc, are not available to visit all year around. Lhasa, Gyantse and Shigatse are suitable for traveling in all seasons. While in Nepal, Kathmandu Valley, including Kathmandu, Panta and Bhaktapur, is suitable for visit all year around.
If you want to take an overland trip between Lhasa and Kathmandu, you should plan your trip in a month from April to October. There usually are strong snows from November to March of next year. If you want to visit only Kathmandu and Lhasa, you can set out any time you want. But in winter, the flight schedule between Lhasa and Kathmandu is not frequent.
How Many Days Are Needed for a Nepal Tibet Trip?
Generally speaking, a Tibet Nepal trip takes about 7~22 days. The trip can be shortened or extended, depending on the destinations you want to visit. The most class route, Kathmandu - Mount Everest - Shigatse - Gyantse - Lhasa, needs only 7 days to finish, including arrival and departure day. So does the opposite route from Lhasa to Kathmandu. You can extend this trip to 9~10 days to enjoy a slower and leisure pace. If you want to have your trip in Nepal covered, just add 3~8 days to your plan – Kathmandu (3 days), Lumbini (2 days), Chitwan (2 days), Pokhara (2 days).
Tranquil yamdrok Lake
How to Transfer between Nepal and Tibet?
Currently, overland driving and taking flight are two only available transfers between Nepal and Tibet. Chinese Nepal Railway is still under preparation.
Nepal Tibet Overland Travel
Nepal Tibet Overland travel connects Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal with Lhasa, the capital of Tibet, with a total distance around 940km which usually needs only about 3 days to spend on the road. From Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal, travelers only have to drive about 160km to reach Gyirong Port on the border. Crossing the port, travelers can get to Mount Everest in a single day, then extend their trips to Shigatse, Gyantse, Lhasa, Namtso, etc. Learn more >
Kathmandu Lhasa Flight
Flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa is much time-saving and cost-effective. It takes only 1.5 hours to get to Lhasa from Kathmandu while it needs 2.5 hours from Chengdu, 2.7 hours form Chongqing, 3.5 hours from Xian, 4.5 hours from Beijing etc. The ticket for Lhasa Kathmandu is about 2,500 CNY, much cheaper than Beijing Lhasa Flights, Shanghai Lhasa Flights or Guangzhou Lhasa Flights. Currently there are usually 2~4 daily flights between Lhasa and Kathmandu. Learn more >
Necessary Permits for Kathmandu Lhasa Overland Travel
|Kathmandu to Lhasa
|Lhasa to Kathmandu
|Group Visa, Tibet Entry Permit, Tibet Border Pass
|Chinese Visa, Tibet Entry Permit, Tibet Border Pass, Nepal Visa
Group Visa is a special kind of Chinese Visa for foreign travelers to enter Tibet from Nepal. Common Chinese Visa doesn’t allow foreigner to enter Tibet from Nepal. With this Group Visa, one can also extend its trip to other provinces and other cities in China. Travelers can only apply for this permit at China Embassy in Kathmandu City. Original passport is required. learn more >
Tibet Entry Permit
Tibet Entry Permit is foremost and compulsory for foreign passport holders to enter Tibet. Issued by Tibet Tourism Bureau, it is also called TTB permit. Without the permit, you can’t board your flight to Tibet or cross overland from Nepal, also will not be able to get other permits to continue to travel Tibet further.
Every non-Chinese passport holder, including US citizens, UK citizens, Australians, Canadians, Germans, Taiwanese, etc., has to obtain Tibet Entry Permit. It takes about 15~20 days to obtain this permit. learn more >
Tibet Border Pass
To pass the China-Nepal border area, travelers have to hold a Border Pass which is issued by Tibet Armed Police Border Corps in Lhasa. It can't be applied by travelers individually. One has to contact a Tibet travel agency to apply the Border Permit from the Tibet Armed Police Border Corps in Lhasa. learn more >
If you want to travel from Tibet to Nepal, you have to obtain a Chinese Visa first. Group Visa is not qualified. The Chinese Visa will also be used to apply for Tibet Entry Permit before your trip. learn more >
If you travel from Tibet to Nepal, you have to apply for a Nepal Visa, which is simple and quick. You can apply for Nepal Visa at the Nepal border(Gyirong Port). Passport is needed to apply for Nepal Visa.
Tibet Entry Permit
Tibet Border Pass
Recommended Tibet Tour Packages
Tibet Discovery Tours is specialized in finding unique experience of Tibet, and leading you to explore what interests you most. Our Private Tibet Nepal Tours will take you to explore deep into the Holy Land, with loads of options, freedom & flexibility. You can choose from the following hand-picked tour packages which have been successfully operated for many years and created loads of amazing experiences for our customers, or check more Nepal Tibet Tours >>
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