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Tibet Weather and Climate

Best Season to Travel Tibet

The climate of Tibet belongs to the typical downy special climate, which is unique and complicated. There are two different seasons in Tibet: dry season and rainy season. Specifically, influenced by the humid air current from the Indian Ocean, a number of valleys have warm climate with great rainfall in the south of Tibet. The average temperature is about 8°C, the lowest temperature can drop to -16°C and the highest temperature comes up to 16°C. The raining season is between May and September. In the north of Tibet, the average temperature drops below 0°C and the freezing season can last half of the year. Its highest temperature in July can't rise to 10°C with more rainfall in the night during the raining season and strong wind in winter. The weather is normal and suitable for traveling in Lhasa and the central part of Tibet. Visitors would neither feel cold in winter nor hot in summer between March and October, because it is the best season to travel in Tibet.
Most of the annual rainfall comes in the rainy season, which starts from May to September. In this period, the precipitation covers 90% of the total amount in the whole year. In southern Tibet, rainfall occurs intermittently between May and September, bringing moisture to barley fields and greenery to the valleys. Generally, it rains at night in Lhasa, Shigatse and Chamdo area. The rainfall may block roads and makes a tough travel, but, it is the best time to enjoy the scenery. In Tibet, the air is thin, lower pressure with low oxygen, so it neither blocks nor holds heat. Although the sunshine feels warm, shadows are chilly, temperatures can vary greatly within a single day, which can once exceed 29°C in the day, and plunge below 4°C in the night. Strong winds predominate in the mountainous and plateau areas, so the higher you go the colder it gets. Overall, weather is the main factor that must be carefully considered before traveling in Tibet. However, Tibet weather is not as harsh as people's imagination. It is suitable to travel in Tibet from April to the beginning of November, and the best time is August and September. But if you only stay in Lhasa, you can go there anytime of the year.

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User Comments

Question:I’m planning holidays in december to Tibet. We will go to Lhasa, Shigatse and maybe to Nyingchi. What degrees and weather is it then? will it be very cold and what sort of clothing do I need to wear (?how many layers, gloves? etc).

Answer:The temperature is about 8C to -10C in December in Lhasa. It is cold, but not that much than the temperature in North China. I suggest you to wear the down jackets, sweaters, hats, gloves, clothes like those. It’s better wear windproof clothes.