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Best way to get to Tibet

Dallas, Texas
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Best way to get to Tibet

Hi

I want to go to Tibet from Xian would like to know the best way to go. First, should I go with soft sleeper or hard sleeper? I heard you have to book a tour. I just want to go for the train ride and to see th Patala Palace so I guess I need at least one night in Lhasa (is that possible?) Will the travel agency make all the arrangements for the travel permit? How far in advance can I book the trip? Also I was told I don't need a visa to fly into Hong Kong but do I need one to get inland or do I need one for Lahas? I'm confused please help.

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Guilin
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1. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

Hi, I would like to tell you that it is a big challenge to buy train ticket from Xian to Lhasa, even you mean to book it from a Xian travel agency. Therefore it is advised to book ticket via a Xining travel agency to take train from Xining to Lhasa. And commission charge for one ticket is also quite expensive, sometimes as same as the price of a ticket. But that is the truth for the hot of train to Tibet.

Visa is required if you want to visit Tibet and is also the premise for handling the Tibet Entry Permit. Tibet tour activity via a Tibet tour agency including tour guide, car, and hotel is required if you want to tour Tibet. And you should book that tour at least 20 days before your entering Tibet for leaving time to the Tibet travel agency to handle the entry permit for you. Though touring Tibet required too much about tourists, the wonderful scenery there really make it worthy.

China Private Travel

2. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

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hong kong
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3. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

You probably need a visa for China, although some nationalities do not. When you apply for your visa, do NOT mention that you are going to Tibet.

Once you have visa, contact one of the Tibet travel agencies and arrange a tour and a Tibet permit. Getting the train tickets is difficult - you probably have to pay a lot in commission.

Los Angeles
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4. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

I just got back from china and Tibet. I flew non-stop from xian to lhasa on china eastern. They have one flight a day. Otherwise you have to go via Chengdu. They wont let you on the plane (and I heard the train as well), unless you have a Tibet travel permit (you need the Chinese visa to get into china and to get the Tibet permit). Only way to get the permit is via a tibet tour. There is no independent travel in Tibet. And you cannot enter any site without a guide who has your permit (we got stopped a few times to check). I used Shigatse Travels and was very happy with what they did for us (we traveled all the way to EBC and back)

Melbourne, Australia
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5. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

If you are from Singapore, Japan or Brunei you don't need a visa. If you are not from these countries you will need a visa to enter mainland China.

If you were only flying to Hong Kong or Macau & not entering mainland China you would not need a Chinese visa. Because you plan on entering mainland China ( ie Xian) you will need a visa.

To go to Tibet you will also need an entry permit. These can only be obtained from a travel agency who will organise your tour. You used to be able to organise your entry permit with an agent, arrive in Lhasa with your "group" and go your own way. You can't do that anymore and need a tour guide. So you are best to organize the transport, permit & guide thru one agency.

You can either fly into Lhasa or take the train. The train is preferable - because of the high altitude it will help you acclimatize slowly. If you have not been at high altitude before you will not know how or if it effects you. If you did not want to go via Xi'an there are other places you can depart from. The trains also leave from Guangzhou which is closer to Hong Kong than Xi'an.

For trains to Tibet look here: www.seat61.com/China.htm#Lhasa%20&%20Tibet

Re your one night in Tibet / Lhasa. That's a long way to go, at a lot of expense for one night. If you do feel some mild effects of high altitude ( such as a headache) you might not feel touristy the next day & need a day to laze around & recover. Most people plan for 2 to 3 nights minimum.

6. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

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Removed on: 5:37 am, August 12, 2010
Melbourne, Australia
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7. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

Mike_Ho it is certainly easier getting a train back. But if you read my comments about altitude sickness for foreigners it makes more sense health wise to arrive by train Especially if you have not acclimatised from sea level along the way & fly in.

xi'an
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8. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

It's around 35hours from Xi'an to Lhasa by train, soft sleeper berth train ticket is very busy these days. need to book train ticket around ten days in advance.

Beijing, China
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9. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

Both of hard sleeper and soft sleeper work.

You can stay in Lhasa one night and on that day you can go to Potala Palace, Barkor Street, Jokhang Monastery.

Travel Agent can arrange all necessary permits for you easily.

A week in advance is enough for you to arrange the trip.

You need a mainland visa except a hongkong one.

10. Re: Best way to get to Tibet

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