Tibet Festivals

Tibetan culture was developed in Tibet, largely isolated from the rest of the world. Their festivals are calculated based on their own Tibetan calendar, which lags four to six weeks behind Gregorian calendar. Endless festivals happen throughout the year, though the months of February, July and September concentrate the most. See Our Festival Tours, or simply let's customize a tour for you.

Featured Tibet Festivals

Tibet Shoton Festival

Tibet Shoton Festival

Lhasa, Aug. 29, 2011

The Shoton Festival is one of the most popular traditional festivals in Tibet. It celebrates eating yogurt, the Tibetan monks who end their season of meditation, the watching of Tibetan dramatic operas, and Tibetan Buddhism. It is held annually in the month of August, or late in the sixth month or early in the seventh month of the Tibetan calendar. The festival is a great occasion for both Tibetans and tourists.

Tibetan New Year

Tibet New Year Festival

Lhasa, Feb. 22 to Mar. 8, 2012

Tibet New Year Festival is celebrated by Tibetan people. It is marked with ancient ceremonies that represents the struggle between good and evil, by chanting, and by passing fire torches through the crowds. A certain amount of levity is provided by events such as the dance of the deer and the amusing battles between the King and his various ministers. Losar Festival is characterized especially by dancing, music, and a general spirit of merrymaking. . See our Tibetan New Year Festival Tour

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival

Nagqu, Aug. 10, 2011

The Nagqu Horse Racing Festival is the grandest annual event in northern China's Nagqu Prefecture, the largest prefecture in Tibet Autonomous Region, aka Tibet, and indeed, the grandest annual event in all of northern Tibet. August is the golden season on the vast grasslands of Nagqu Prefecture, and the time when the grass is tallest and the weather is most accommodating to those who enjoy the great outdoors.

Tibetan Butter Lamp Festival

Tibetan Butter Lamp Festival (Choe-nga Choepa)

Lhasa, Mar.2012

This delicious-sounding festival involves lighting butter lamps (lamps made of butter) and displaying butter sculptures in order to commemorate Shakyamuni Buddha's great debating victory over his opponents about 2,500 years ago in India.

Miao People's New Year Festival

Ganden Thangka Festival

Lhasa, Aug. 13, 2011

The Ganden Thangka Festival is an important festival at the old Ganden Monastery that was the leading monastery of the Geluk tradition of Tibet. Every year, thousands of people circle the monastery ruins, enter inside to view the Buddhas, pray, and get blessed, and then they go outside to sit on the hill or try to get close to the wall where the big and vividly woven thangka is displayed. .

Monlam Prayer Festival

Monlam Prayer Festival

Nov. 25 to Dec. 5, 2011

During the Monlam Festival, Buddhists pray and commemorate the miracles Buddha did about 2,500 years ago in India. To see a spectacle, visit the temples and see the Buddhists worship during the Monlam Festival that starts on March 8 in 2011 and February 12 in 2012 and lasts about 11 days..

All China Festivals and Events

Lhasa Festivals and Events List

Monlam Prayer Festival

Feb. 12 

The Monlam prayer festival is actually almost a two week event. The festival starts on the fourth day of the Tibetan calender and ends of the fifteenth day that is the day called the Butter Lam... Read more

Tibetan Butter Lamp Festival


This delicious-sounding festival involves lighting butter lamps (lamps made of butter) and displaying butter sculptures in order to commemorate Shakyamuni Buddha’s great debating victory over his op... Read more

Saga Dawa Festival

May. 21 to Jun. 2

The Saga Dawa Festival honors the life of Buddha. According to their tradition, when Buddha was dying, he instructed one of his followers not to honor him merely with flowers, incense and li... Read more

Garma Ri Gi (Tibetan Bathing Festival)

Aug. 30 

Garma Ri Gi or the Bathing Festival is a mass activity throughout Tibet that takes place on the 7th month of the Tibetan Lunar calendar when Venus appears in the sky. It is an annual week-long fe... Read more

Palden Lhamo Festival

Dec. 13 

The Palden Lhamo festival happens on the 15th day of the 10th lunar month in the Tibetan calendar. This festival is to honor a wrathful deity called Palden Lhamo. She is thought of as Tibet's pro... Read more

The Thangka Unveiling at Tashilunpo

Jul. 18 

Start of the Shigatse Thangka Festival Between the 14th day and the 16th day of the fifth Tibetan lunar calendar month, there is an annual Thangka worship festival where huge Thangka pictures ... Read more

Ganden Thangka Festival

Aug. 18 

The Ganden Thangka Festival is an important festival at the old Ganden Monastery that was the leading monastery of the Geluk tradition of Tibet. Every year, thousands of people circle the mo... Read more

Lhabab Duechen Festival

Nov. 20 

The Lhabab Duechen or Duchen Festival is a Tibetan Buddhist festival that commemorates Buddha returning to earth after going to the 33 Heaven at the age of 41. The festival is in the ninth month of ... Read more

Zamling Chisang (Samye Dolde)

Jul. 19 

Samye Monastery On the 15th day of the 5th month of the Tibetan calendar that is July 31 in 2015, there is a traditional festival called Zamling Chisang or Universal Prayer Day to celebrate Gur... Read more

Tibet Shoton Festival

Sep. 1 

The Shoton Festival is one of the most popular traditional festivals in Tibet. It celebrates eating yogurt, the Tibetan monks who end their season of meditation, the watching of Tibetan drama... Read more

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival

Aug. 1 

Nagqu Horse Racing Festival The Nagqu Horse Racing Festival is the grandest annual event in northern China's Nagqu Prefecture, the largest prefecture in Tibet Autonomous Region, aka Tibet, and i... Read more

Gyantse Horse Race Festival

Jul. 20 

In rugged beautiful high-altitude country about 245 kilometers southwest of Lhasa is the ancient town of Gynatse where there are annual athletic contests on the fourth lunar month of the Tib... Read more