1. What is the fitness demand for cycling in Tibet?
Considering the high altitude and long distances of most cycling tours in Tibet, one needs have at least an average level of fitness. Some of the short cycling around Lhasa may be relatively easy for most tourists, while some mountain biking tours, like the one from Lhasa to Everest Base Camp, requires a higher degree of fitness. The road is generally flat and broad, but there will be quite a few twists and turns from time to time. Especially, when crossing the mountain passes, it can be quite exhausting. It is recommended to take training for a couple of months before you officially start cycling on the plateau. Also getting acclimatized to the high altitude is helpful.
2. When is best time to enjoy a Tibet cycling tour?
Generally, the best time to enjoy a Tibet biking tour is from April to June and September to November. In spring and autumn seasons, the climate is stable and the weather is mild, and clear and bright sky makes it favorable to explore the wildness of Tibet. One can appreciate the refreshing natural landscape from blooming flowers to lush grassland. Summer season is also a good time for biking as an alternative, but one needs to pay attention to the rain forecast in advance if the cycling involves some mountain roads. From November, most routes in Tibet will be blocked by heavy snows and it could be risky to bike on the plateau at this time.
3. How is the road condition for biking in Tibet?
In fact, you will ride on very good roads most of the time as the road conditions in Tibet have been greatly improved especially for those between big cities. There is smooth and wide Friendship Highway that connects Lhasa with Gyirong Port, and the route from Lhasa to Lake Namtso is also well-paved. Certainly, some mountain roads in remote areas of Tibet are still rugged and bumped, but no so bad as one imagined. Usually, a mountain bike is qualified for all kinds of biking in Tibet.
4. What permits and documents to prepare for a Tibet bike tour?
First of all, you need to get the Tibet Travel Permit and Chinese Visa to travel to Tibet. After you get your Chinese Visa by your own, we can help you to get the Tibet Travel Permit with the copies of your visa and passport. With the two documents, you are able to cycle in Lhasa and its surroundings. If your biking route extends to Everest Base Camp or other remote regions, or even the China and Nepal border at Gyirong, you will also need to get Aliens’ Travel Permit or Frontier Pass. Still, our guide will help you to get the required documents just before checking during your cycling journey.
5. Can I bring my own bike? How could I get a bike in Tibet?
Yes, you can bring your own bike if it is convenient for you. You can pack your bike up to take flights or trains to Tibet, but you will probably pay a lot for the long-distance transportation. As a proper option, you can hire a bike in Lhasa. There are several stores providing bike rental services. Remember to bring the spares like chains, tires, tubes in case the bike breaks en route. The cost on hiring a mountain bike will depend on how many days you will hire for your trip. But it normally cheaper than the way you bring your own bike.