Weather: In March, it is sunny, dry, windy and cold. It is in the dry season, and it is good weather for touring since there are only about 2 days of rain or snow in March for a total of 3 mm of total rainfall. It is cold at night, but the high altitude of 3,600 meters or 12,000 feet makes it feel warm when it is sunny. There is about 8 hours of sunshine a day.
The average nightly low temperature is -2 °C (28 °F), and the average daily high temperature is 13 °C (55 °F). The ultraviolet radiation index is very high. Check the Lhasa weather and forecast>>
Clothing: For the changing temperatures, bring your winter clothes and dress in layers. Some hotels and many restaurants in Lhasa have no central heating, so you might need to wear a coat inside. Have a T-shirt, coat, trousers, hat, and gloves. A sun hat and sunglasses can protect you from the high ultraviolet radiation.
Altitude Sickness: The oxygen content of the air is only 2/3 that at sea level, so a health check is a good idea. Most visitors get altitude sickness and find a long walk difficult. Take precautions if you have asthma, high blood pressure, or heart disease. Lhasa health advice>>
The Monlam Festival and the Butter Lamp Festival are the middle and ending days of the Tibetan New Year celebrations. The Tibetan New Year celebrations last two weeks. The fourth through eleventh days of their year are the Monlam Festival and the 15th day of their year is the Butter Lamp Festival on the night of the full moon that ends the religious holidays.
During the Monlam Festival, people focus on prayer and remembering Buddha and his teachings. People light thousands of lamps made from yak butter or vegetable oil in the temples. The lamps produce a smoky light and are thought to be conducive for their worship. Then during the Butter Lamp Festival, big butter lamps are created that portray various scenes from history or their teachings. Barkhor Street and its square are turned into a grand exhibition site for the butter lamps. It is a fantastic sight.
Ganden Monastery: This big monastery is a 1½-hour drive from Lhasa and is probably the most interesting and scenic monastery in the Lhasa area that tourists will enjoy. Part of the highlight of this attraction is the wonderful scenery. It sits at an elevation 4,300 meters or 14,000 feet on a great mountain peak. There is good hiking on the slopes behind the building too, and even the drive there is scenic.
It is also important as a very active monastery for their religion. It is more active than the ones in Lhasa. Ganden is one of their three main monasteries. It was founded in 1409 and contains huge temples.
The Potala Palace: The gigantic ancient palace is a world famous Lhasa landmark and recommended by UNESCO. The beautiful white and red building sits on a hill, and lowlanders find it difficult to walk up to it unless they acclimate for two or three days.
It was once the ancient palace of the Dalai Lama, and now it is a monastery and a worship place. But it mainly is preserved as a museum. Crowds of pilgrims and locals worship during their ceremonies in March.
March has the benefits of comfortable travel weather, the big religious festivals, and low tourist volume, but travel is problematical because travel restrictions are often in effect in March. The weather is good for touring in the local area, but roads to the attractions far outside Lhasa to the north, south or west such as Mt. Kailash, Everest, Shigatse (elevation 3,900 meters), and Gyantse (elevation 3,100 meters) might still be impassable. It is wise to spend at least a few nights in Lhasa to acclimatize before heading to higher elevation highlights along the Friendship Highway.
|Date||Average High||Average Low|
|March 1||51 °F||10.56 °C||23 °F||-5 °C|
|March 2||51 °F||10.56 °C||23 °F||-5 °C|
|March 3||51 °F||10.56 °C||23 °F||-5 °C|
|March 4||51 °F||10.56 °C||24 °F||-4.44 °C|
|March 5||51 °F||10.56 °C||24 °F||-4.44 °C|
|March 6||52 °F||11.11 °C||24 °F||-4.44 °C|
|March 7||52 °F||11.11 °C||24 °F||-4.44 °C|
|March 8||52 °F||11.11 °C||25 °F||-3.89 °C|
|March 9||52 °F||11.11 °C||25 °F||-3.89 °C|
|March 10||52 °F||11.11 °C||25 °F||-3.89 °C|
|March 11||53 °F||11.67 °C||25 °F||-3.89 °C|
|March 12||53 °F||11.67 °C||25 °F||-3.89 °C|
|March 13||53 °F||11.67 °C||26 °F||-3.33 °C|
|March 14||53 °F||11.67 °C||26 °F||-3.33 °C|
|March 15||53 °F||11.67 °C||26 °F||-3.33 °C|
|March 16||54 °F||12.22 °C||26 °F||-3.33 °C|
|March 17||54 °F||12.22 °C||27 °F||-2.78 °C|
|March 18||54 °F||12.22 °C||27 °F||-2.78 °C|
|March 19||54 °F||12.22 °C||27 °F||-2.78 °C|
|March 20||54 °F||12.22 °C||27 °F||-2.78 °C|
|March 21||55 °F||12.78 °C||28 °F||-2.22 °C|
|March 22||55 °F||12.78 °C||28 °F||-2.22 °C|
|March 23||55 °F||12.78 °C||28 °F||-2.22 °C|
|March 24||55 °F||12.78 °C||28 °F||-2.22 °C|
|March 25||55 °F||12.78 °C||28 °F||-2.22 °C|
|March 26||56 °F||13.33 °C||29 °F||-1.67 °C|
|March 27||56 °F||13.33 °C||29 °F||-1.67 °C|
|March 28||56 °F||13.33 °C||29 °F||-1.67 °C|
|March 29||56 °F||13.33 °C||29 °F||-1.67 °C|
|March 30||56 °F||13.33 °C||30 °F||-1.11 °C|
|March 31||57 °F||13.89 °C||30 °F||-1.11 °C|