Travel advice to Tibet
08/29/2011 - 14:00

The Chinese authorities are limiting access to Tibet by foreign tourists. They periodically prohibit travel to Tibet for foreign nationals. Travellers to Tibet should check with tour operators or travel agents and monitor the international media and this travel advice for information about travel to Tibet.

Foreigners wishing to travel to the Tibet Autonomous Region require the permission of the Chinese authorities. Foreigners may normally only enter with a permit as part of a tour group; tour operators and travel agencies offer assistance with these.

Authorities announced that the Tibet Autonomous Region would be closed to foreigners during March 2011. Some foreign tourists have since been able to visit, however, we have received reports that the authorities will not grant further permits in June and July. The Chinese government has not confirmed these reports.

Be aware that ongoing political and ethnic tensions can lead to unrest and violent protest in Tibet.  While foreigners are not normally targeted during unrest, travellers should be alert to the possibility of being caught up in unexpected outbreaks of violence.

Avoid becoming involved in demonstrations or calls for Tibetan independence. The authorities regard videotaping or photographing such activities as provocative.
Local authorities will react if you are found carrying letters or packages from Tibetan nationals to be posted in other countries.

Photography in Buddhist monasteries requires permission; a fee, normally negotiated in advance, is payable.

The extreme altitude in Tibet may cause altitude sickness.