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HOTELS AND GUESTHOUSES IN TIBET

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HOTELS IN TIBET: WHAT TO EXPECT

In the recent years, Tibet has been rapidly developing. Due to the increased quality of infrastructure, more tourists are visiting Tibet every year, and the tourist industry is growing. As a result, hotels in Tibet, especially in large cities, offer all modern amenities. In Lhasa, you will find the best hotels in Tibet, including 5-star hotels.

Hotels in Tibet are often decorated in traditional Tibetan style, with painted wood furniture and Thangka paintings. It provides a unique atmosphere for your stay in Tibet. Most of the hotels in Tibet offer breakfast (check your itinerary for details).

When staying in hotels in cities and towns you can expect all basic amenities even in simple hotels, including a shower with hot water, Wi-Fi, and heating in the room.

GUESTHOUSES IN TIBET

Everest Base Camp in Tibet tent camp for travelers
Tent camp at the Everest Base Camp in Tibet

When you travel to remote areas, there are often no hotels. Some of the most beautiful places in Tibet are either very remote or located in protected areas and guesthouses are often the only option.

Guesthouses have very basic amenities. There are usually dormitory rooms and the restrooms are outside. Guesthouses don’t have showers and overall offer very simple accommodations.

It is important to be prepared for your trip and know what to expect.

CENTRAL TIBET

LHASA HOTELS

View from St Regis hotel in Lhasa, Tibet
View from St Regis Hotel in Lhasa, Tibet

In recent years, Lhasa has become a large and prosperous city with modern infrastructure. Lhasa welcomes thousands of visitors from around the world, arriving at the airport and train station. Consequently, the number of accommodation options increased. The best hotels in Tibet are located in Lhasa. You can find hotels in different price ranges, offering various levels of comfort. Hotels range from 2 to 5 stars.

The majority of tourists usually stay in 3-4-star hotels. They provide the best combination of price and comfort. In a typical 3-4 star hotel you can expect to have a separate room, twin or queen size bed, hot shower, tea kettle, and Wi-Fi. Hotels in the Old Town (the historical center of Lhasa) don’t have a heating system. Some hotels offer heating pads for mattresses during the cold months. Hotels offer breakfast, either made-to-order or a buffet with a combination of Western and Chinese dishes.
The majority of tourists stay in hotels in the Old Town to be close to the best sightseeing sites and restaurants that Lhasa can offer. For those who want to experience the atmosphere of authentic Tibet, we can offer a few hotels in historical buildings (built in the 17th/18th centuries).

SHIGATSE HOTELS

Shigatse is the second largest and one of the most important cities in Tibet. The variety of accommodations is similar to Lhasa. There are many newly built comfortable hotels, some are decorated in Tibetan style and offer all modern amenities. Hotels offer buffet breakfast and can store some luggage if you want to leave any extras before heading to Everest Base Camp or Western Tibet.

TENT CAMP AT THE EVEREST IN TIBET

From May until October, there are large tents set up near Rongbuk Monastery with a view of Everest. From the tent camp, you can see Mountain Everest. This area was fully renovated in 2023 and all tents were updated as well. You can now enjoy improved facilities and even Wi-Fi.

We visit Rongbuk monastery either in the evening or in the morning. Rongbuk is the highest monastery on the planet.

Tents in the camp are large, with 6-10 beds along the walls, with an option to rent a smaller 2-bed tent for privacy for an extra charge. There is a stove in the middle of the tent, so it is usually warm in the evenings. There are plenty of blankets to keep you warm during the night. Blankets, however, are rarely washed. We recommend bringing an inner sheet for a sleeping bag or any other cover for added comfort. You can order dinner and breakfast there. There is an English menu with several choices.

Restrooms are located outside, bring your flashlight or headlamp to find the way to it and back to the tent.

RONGBUK MONASTERY GUESTHOUSE

Rongbuk Monastery and Everest in the background Tibet side

During the colder months, the wind becomes stronger and there is no tent camp. When we visit Everest Base Camp in winter, we stay overnight at the guesthouse of the Rongbuk monastery. The guesthouse has dormitory rooms.

There is electricity and you can charge your phones and use Wi-Fi. There is a restaurant with a stove, where you can order dinner and breakfast and warm up. Bedrooms are not heated, but there are plenty of blankets. We recommend bringing an inner sheet for a sleeping bag for additional comfort.

HOTEL NEAR YAMDROK LAKE

The recently opened boutique hotel is located right by Yamdrok Lake. Rooms offer gorgeous views of the lake. There is a terrace where you can relax watching the calm waters of Yamdrok. There are only 9 rooms in the hotel. All are furnished with comfortable beds, spacious closets, and TV units. There is free Wi-fi and your stay includes breakfast.

WESTERN TIBET

GUESTHOUSES ON THE KAILASH TREKKING ROUTE

Typically trekking around the sacred Mountain Kailash lasts for 3 days. Consequently, you will spend 2 nights on the trek. Due to the high elevation and remoteness of the region, there are no hotels.

The first night we spend at the Dira Puk monastery guesthouse. The guesthouse has two buildings, one of which is new. Facilities are basic. In the new building, there are rooms with two twin beds. In the old building, there are dormitory rooms. There is a simple tea shop adjacent to the guesthouse, where you can get bottled water, some snacks, and hot water for instant noodles and tea/coffee.

Although the guesthouse is simple, you will get probably the best view of mountain Kailash from your windows. The magnificent peak is very close and unobstructed by other mountains.

On the second day, we will trek to the Zultul Puk monastery and stay overnight at the guesthouse. There are only dormitory rooms with five beds in each. However, there is a restaurant where you can order a hot meal (after two days of having instant noodles).

MANASAROVAR LAKE GUESTHOUSES

Guesthouses by the Manasarovar lake in Tibet
Guesthouses by the Manasarovar Lake

There is a line of guesthouses by the lake. They are located in a very beautiful place, with Manasarovar Lake in front of them and Chiu monastery on the hill right behind them. They offer similar facilities, with dorm rooms (typically five beds) and restrooms outside.

You can get hot water for tea or instant noodles. We suggest bringing your snacks. Before 2017, restaurants were working in each guesthouse, where you could order a hot meal. No menus, you could just walk into the kitchen and point to what you want to have in your meal. Right now, there are no restaurants in these guesthouses.

There is a hot spring near the guesthouses, where you can walk in the afternoon. There are individual baths that are filled up with hot spring water (very hot) and locker rooms.

SAGA HOTELS

Saga is a small town in Western Tibet, where we stop when traveling to Mount Kailash. The two main options in Saga include the local Tibetan-owned Norling Hotel and the larger Western Post Hotel. We usually reserve a smaller hotel for our group tours. It is simple, with basic amenities. This hotel doesn’t serve breakfast, but there are many options nearby.

The larger Grand Hotel of Western Post Hotel looks nice on the outside but is still very basic inside. This hotel typically charges very high fees for its amenities and is very often reserved by large groups of pilgrims from India. That’s why we usually reserve a smaller hotel in Saga.

DARCHEN HOTELS

Most of our group tours stay in a simple Tibetan-owned hotel in Darchen. It offers double rooms with twin beds and a public restroom. You can also take a hot shower for an additional fee. The hotel has a spacious dining area. The hotel is simple but sufficient to prepare for the Kailash trek.  

There is only one Western-style hotel – the Himalaya Hotel. It is a lot more expensive than similar hotels in larger cities, such as Lhasa. You should still expect a little less comfort in this rural area. 

SOUTHERN TIBET

HOTEL IN TSEDANG

Tsedang has been growing in recent years and the economy is strong there. People were moving from smaller villages to Tsedang for better job opportunities. As a result, you can find a few new modern hotels on the central street. Hotel amenities are similar to the ones of an average 3-star hotel, with the choice of bed sizes, bathrooms with shower and/or bathtub, electric tea kettle, and a TV. Hotels offer a buffet breakfast with mostly Chinese dishes. There are a few restaurants nearby and a supermarket.

HOTEL IN SAMYE

There is a large hotel near the Samye monastery where everyone stays. The hotel is rather simple, but it offers all the basic facilities. There is a choice of two and four beds in the room, as well as the dormitory room. Rooms are equipped with a hot shower. There is a large restaurant, where you can have breakfast. In addition, there are a few tea shops, offering a variety of dishes for lunch and dinner.

NORTHERN TIBET

HOTEL NEAR NAMTSO LAKE

Namtso Lake is located in a protected area, and all previously built guesthouses by the lake’s shore were removed. If you are planning to stay in this area, the best option is to drive to the closest town Damshung. There are several local hotels with all basic amenities. Currently, the best option is the 3-star Namtso Holy Goat Manor Hotel which opened in 2021.

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