In this post, the weather in Tibet will discuss some of the significant difference and main highlight of climate in Tibet.
Tibet is often associated with snow, and it is famously called the Land of Snows for its surround by the might mountain ranges in all the direction. This image makes many people think it is freezing in Tibet.
The weather in Tibet is not that extreme, and we have a mild summer and mild winter. Yet, there are some differences in the atmospheric phenomenon which make Weather in Tibet unique.
Main Features of Tibet's Climate
Strong Sunshine: Tibet's high elevation resulted in an extreme Sun with a lot of unfiltered UV. It is recommended for all travellers visiting Tibet to bring excellent sunscreen and good sunglass to protect your skin and eyes from the Harsh sun.
Cold and Dry: It is usually cold and dry in Tibet. It is always recommended to wear clothes in layers and always have extra clothes readily available to wear when in shades. Due to the intense sun, it will make you feel hotter than it is. While in the shade, you will know the natural coldness of Tibet.
Additional to the cold, It is very dry. You will feel the dryness of the atmosphere as soon as your arrival. Most people start to feel dryness in their nasal canal. Many will choose to put Vaseline in their nose area.
Another way we local Tibetan do is to wear the medical-surgical mask all the time. This helps you breathe in the same moist you will breathe out. Additionally, drinking plenty of water helps.
There is a huge difference in temperature between day and night: There is a big difference between day and night temperature. Daytime in Tibet is usually hot, and it will be chilly at night time. Therefore it is often recommended for travellers to have their warmer cloth readily available all the time.
Effect of Tibet's High altitude on Tibet's Weather
The atmospheric pressure of Tibet is low due to its elevation resulting in thin air. Due to thin air, there is less oxygen in Tibet's Atmosphere. Most travellers are not used to the thin air resulting in High Altitude sickness. You will have to think of your tour itineraries and arrangement as per the acclimatisation process of your body. Read more on acclimatisation in Tibet.
Scorching Sun: Sun in Tibet is intense. It is mainly due to the closeness of the Tibetan plateau to the sun and less filtration of Sun UV rays due to less friction.
Tibet's Weather in four Seasons
Weather in Tibet is quite different from other places due to the high elevation and geographical characteristic of the surrounding mountains ranges.
Weather in Tibet During Spring (April-May)
The average temperature of the spring month in Tibet is between 5-19°C (41-66°F). Spring wind brings clouds and moisture to the plateau, and it is often associated with snowfall at the beginning of the season.
Tibet opens up for international travellers from 1st April after a month closure during Tibetan New Year. Making spring a good time to visit Tibet, if you want to avoid the large crowd in Tibet.
As weather's warm up and melt snows in the major mountain pass in mid-spring. Mount Kailash and other remote region become accessible for travellers. Spring is a golden time for trekking around mount Kailash.
It is also a once in a year window period for summiting Mount Everest, when you visit Mount Everest base camp, you will find likely to find Basecamp for mountaineers in the distance from tourist Basecamp.
You will also find a peach blossom and apple blossom when you visit Tibet in spring. The popular festival in the spring season is the peach blossom festival in Kongpo. It is recommended to visit the region to see them blossom.
Weather in Tibet During Summer (June-August)
The average temperature of the Summer month in Tibet is between 12-24°C (54-75°F). The weather in Tibet during summer is usually warm in the daytime and coolers in the night.
The second half of Summer is usually the rainy season in Tibet. It starts from July until mid-September. On average we will shower at night or about an hour in the afternoon. The only effect of the rain during your visit to Tibet is the blockage of the scenic view during your Tibet tours.
Summer is usually the busiest Tourism season of the year in Tibet. Therefore it is often different to arrange for your tickets in Lhasa minutes. It is ideal to book your tour and ticket via a local Tibetan travel agency in Tibet at least a month in advance. Please remember there are many, not local travel agency claiming to be local Tibetan owned. Credibility with them is a big issue.
Though summer is the hottest month in Tibet. Please remember to bring a light windproof coat with you all the time to wear indoor. There is a huge difference in temperature between outdoor and indoor. Don't catch a cold in Tibet, it is multiple the effect of high elevation to your body.
Summer is the best time for trekking in Tibet and the most popular and my favourite trail is from Ganden to Samye Monastery.
One of the most famous activities in the summertime for Local Tibetan is camping outdoor near the river. Our Tibetan word for camping is Lingka. All the major festival like Shoton and Horse racing festival includes camping one of the most popular activities. So don't forget to go for Lingka in Lhasa. Contact us we will invite you to our family Lingka.
Weather in Tibet During Autumn (September-October)
The average temperature of the Autumn month in Tibet is between 7-20°C (45-68°F). Autumn is the second busiest season of tourism in Tibet. We will find decreasing number of international traveller as time click toward the end of the season.
Autumn is the second-best season for hiking around Mount Kailash and other hiking trails in Tibet. It is a perfect season for taking pictures of Mountain peaks and landscapes due to the less cloud.
During your visit to Tibet in Autumn. I would usually ask people to pack their winter clothes. It gets cold in the high regions and the valley temperature keeps decreasing as time clicking towards the winter month.
My favourite things to do in the autumntime is to spend time near the Yarling river for its beautiful landscape with yellow leaves on the trees.
The most popular Tibetan festival during the season is Ongkhor and Bathing festival. Ongkhor festival is the festivals celebrating to bring good luck for the annual harvesting from the Farmland. The bathing festival is the lingka or Picnicking festival where we will take bath under the planet Venus in the sky. We believe the planet venus brings a special quality to the running river that would take away all the illness and bring health.
Weather in Tibet During Winter (November-March)
The average temperature of the Winter month in Tibet is between -5-11°C (23-52°F). Weather in Tibet during winter is usually characterised by cold and dry. We don't get much precipitation thus no snowfall in Lhasa valley.
Tibet remains open for international visitors for three months in winter from November to early Feb. After that will be close after mid-February until it reopens at the beginning of April.
Many Tibetan people from the northern region of the Tibetan plateau would visit the southern valleys of Lhasa and Lhoka for pilgrimage in the wintertime. Due to this influx of locals in Lhasa, it makes an ideal season to take a photo of locals in their different local custom. People from remote regions are more welcoming to your camera.
There will be a less tourist in Tibet during the winter months. It is an ideal time to visit if you would like to experience less touristy and more authentic experiences in Tibet. It is particularly a very good time to visit Mount Everest in the wintertime.
Conclusion of Weather in Tibet
Though Tibet is popularly known for its extreme coldness. Yet it is possible to visit Tibet all the season of the year.