Tibet Travel Weather and Climate in December

Tibet Travel Weather and Climate in December

Average Minimum Temperature (℃): -6
Average Maximum Temperature (℃): 9
Tibet Average Temperature (℃): 3
Average Precipitation/Rainfall (mm): 0
Wet Days (>0.1mm): 3
Relative Humidity (%): 37
(Overall Tibet weather in December)

When you travel to Tibet, Tibet in December begins to enter into the severe winter, with temperature getting much colder all across the region, although not as cold as many people in the west believe. While it can be cold in December, the bright sun and strong sunlight can make it feel a lot warmer than it really is.

Across the region, the average monthly temperatures range from -6 degrees to around 9 degrees. And the high altitude and sunny dry weather make it feel warmer than the temperature suggests.

What to Wear for a December Tibet Travel

In December, temperatures drop well below freezing in most of Tibet at night. During the day, it may feel nicely cool in Lhasa and even at such high places as Yamdrok Lake. It is dry and sunny.  For the temperature extremes as you travel and the nightly temperature drop, dress in layers with a coat, trousers, and a T-shirt. Though the UV radiation is relatively moderate, you can wear a sun hat and sunglasses for comfort. You might need a coat inside many hotels and restaurants because many don’t have central heating. Take a heavier coat and gloves up to higher areas.

Useful Travel Tips for your Tibet Travel in December

  • There are some medications for altitude sickness available, but you should consult your own doctor before you take them, and it is not recommended.
  • Tibet Travel Permit: This permit is issued by the Tibet Tourism Bureau and is required for all international travelers heading for Tibet. You need to apply for this permit one month prior to your arrival in Tibet as this permit takes some time to get ready and you need to produce the original copy of this permit at the Airport before you board the flight. 
  • Oxygen levels are much lower in Tibet, so most people get altitude sickness. Cardiovascular conditions are exacerbated, so for the best experience, seek health advice before going and acclimate before exertion or going higher than Lhasa. 
  • December is part of Tibet’s low travel season. The cold and lack of public holidays keep the Chinese tourists away, so the city is free of large crowds of tourists. The people around you may be mainly Tibetan, so you’ll have the opportunity for a more authentic Tibetan experience.

Things to see and do at Tibet in December

The weather in December may become harsher and severely colder, but that does not mean there is nothing to do but sit in front of the fire and drink tea, though that is a lovely way to spend a snowy evening in the Lhasa teahouses. Across the region, attractions can still be visited, and while not all of them are still accessible, many are still free from snowed-up roads and passes.

Shigatse (3,900 meters): It is a good time to see the highlights in Shigatse. The average high temperature in Shigatse in the daytime is 7 °C (44 °F), and the average nightly low is -12 °C (10 °F). The city is seven hours from Everest.

Tashilhunpo Monastery: This big red brick monastery in Shigatse sits against a rugged high mountain that makes for beautiful photographs, with grey rocks and blue and white sky. It was once a town in itself for 5,000 monks. There are dorm rooms, temples, and assembly halls.

Mt. Everest Base Camp (5,200 meters): Though it might be too cold for extended excursions, you can still sightseeing in December. The average daily high temperature is 4 °C (39 °F), and the average nightly low is -15 °C (5 °F). Though it is sunny, it is foggier and mistier so the sightseeing is less clear and the UV radiation is moderate. There is only 2 mm of precipitation in the whole month. The “tent city” near Mt. Everest Base Camp is closed in December.

Tibet Weather and Climate by Month

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