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Weather: July and August are the two rainiest months in Tibet. It is too rainy and snowy for long hikes in the high mountains, and travel is sometimes hampered in the region. It is warm in most of the towns and attractions that tourists go to though. Travel is generally convenient to the north, east, and on the Friendship Highway to the south. July is a month for outdoor festivals, and travel is fine for going to most of the popular ones.
Most tourists arrive in Lhasa, one of Tibet's lowest valleys tourists go to. In Lhasa, the minimum temperature is 10 °C (50 °F), and the maximum temperature is 23 °C (73 °C). It rains about 20 of the days of the month, mainly at night, for a total of 117 mm. Its elevation is 3,600 meters (12,000 feet). See Lhasa current weather conditions and forecast>>
Clothing: Dress for the big nighttime temperature drop with a jacket, T-shirts, trousers, good water resistant shoes and rain gear. Cover up to prevent sunburn, and sun glasses and a sun hat are helpful. Bring a heavy coat and gloves when you go to higher elevations.
Altitude Sickness: A health check is advisable since the oxygen in the air in Lhasa is only 2/3 of that at sea level and even less in most of Tibet. Conditions such as high blood pressure and asthma are exacerbated in these conditions, and most people get altitude sickness. See our Tibet health advice>>
July is one of the best months to visit southern attractions such as Shigatse and other attractions on the Friendship Highway (G318) and the high elevation areas to the north of Lhasa weatherwise. However, it isn't a good month for hiking or sightseeing at Mt. Everest due to the inclement weather there.
Enjoy Namtso Lake: In July, you can enjoy walking and staying overnight at the lake more than in most of the year. It is a salt lake four hours from Lhasa that is reputed as one of Tibet's best scenic places. It is one of the highest lakes in the world at 4,718 meters or 15,000 feet, and the scenery and sunsets are amazing. Acclimate for two or three days in Lhasa valley to enjoy it up there.
Tashilhunpo Monastery: This big red brick monastery has a rugged high mountain background. It makes a bright contrast with the grey rocks and the blue and white sky. It was originally a town in itself for monks and contains assembly halls, dorm rooms, and temples. It once held 5,000 monks. Now, prayer wheels keep on turning, and you can visit it just outside of Shigatse. The monastery is at an elevation of 3,800 meters, and we suggest acclimating in Lhasa or another lower place before going there.
Summer Festivals: In July and August, Tibetans hold their outdoor market fairs, encampments, and sports contests when the weather is the warmest and the grass the greenest. The exact dates of these festivals depends on their lunar calendar.
Notable events include the Ganden Thangka Festival and the Shoton Festival. During the Ganden Thangka Festival, the monastery in Ganden 1½ hours outside of Lhasa displays its relics and unveils its thangka. During the Shoton festival (yoghurt festival) in Lhasa, the Drebung and Sera monasteries show their thangkas, and then many Tibetans have picnics at the Norbulingka and watch Tibetan opera and dance. We can facilitate a visit to these summer events>>.
High season: Tibet is the #1 most popular place to travel to for Chinese young people. The student and university summer holidays begin in early July, and they head for Tibet. Young tourists and tour groups crowd Lhasa and the attractions. It is good to book your your accommodations and rooms in advance if you come in July.
For the best experience, let us help you build a travel plan by our own experience, and let us book your hotel rooms, flight tickets and train tickets. A special Tibet tour visa is required for travel that we can get for you.
If you want to discover more about Tibet, it is advisable to have an experienced private tour guide. We can help you with that.
Here are our most popular Tibet itineraries for your inspiration: