Tibet Cycling Tour Guide: Most Classic Tibet Cycling Tour Routes

August,13 2020 BY Lobsang Tsering 0 COMMENTS

For cycling enthusiasts, Tibet always has so much to offer due to its favorable geographic conditions, its vast territory, and varied topography. Most roads in Tibet have been greatly improved in recent years. The popular riding routes in Tibet are paved roads in good condition that suitable for cycling.

As one of challenging cycling destinations in the worlds, Tibet offers the best Himalaya biking route from Lhasa to Everest Base Camp, the world-class biking route from Lhasa to Kathmandu across the Sino-Nepal friendship highway, as well as several biking routes around Lhasa to nearby attractions like Namtso Lake, Ganden Monastery, and Yumbulagang Palace.

Come to see more details about the most classic biking routes in Tibet and learn how to pick up the best one for yourself to fulfill your challenge dream in Tibet.

Cycling from Lhasa to Everest: The World-class Mountain Biking Route to the Everest.

The cycling from Lhasa to Everest is no doubt the most popular biking route in Tibet. From the holy city to Everest Base Camp, you will follow the same road as the overland tour to EBC. It takes about 19 days to complete the bike journey to the Everest.

From Lhasa to Shigatse, you can enjoy the stunning landscape through the central Tibet with the highlighted Yamdrok Lake, Karola Glacier, and the Gangtse Fortress.

Cycling towards Everest Base CampCycling towards Everest Base Camp from Lhasa

From Shigatse to the base camp is the toughest section of this bike tour. You need to climb up the Gawula pass at 5198 meters above the sea level and finally reach the base camp at 5200 meters high.

But the trip worth your effort. The breathtaking view of the highest peaks of the Himalaya you could see at Gawula Pass will be a memory for the rest of your life.

Most sections of the road to the Everest Base Camp are well-paved. Only a short section to the Everest Base Camp is a dust road.

Lhasa to Kathmandu: The longest downhill road in the world

The biking route from Lhasa to Kathmandu is following the world-famous Sino-Nepal friendship highway across the best parts of the Himalaya in Tibet plateau.

One of the world’s toughest cycling challenges, this high-altitude cycling route from Lhasa to Kathmandu takes you through high mountains, lush river valleys, and endless grasslands to ride across the roof of the world.

Cycling from Lhasa to KathmanduEnjoying biking tour in perfect and clean weather.

The whole distance of the Lhasa to Kathmandu biking tour is around 1100km, and most sections of the roads are well-paved, except for the dust road leading to the Everest Base Camp.

Cycling from Lhasa to Kathmandu, you will pass through several mountain passes over 5000 meters and reach the Everest Base Camp at 5200 meters above the sea level. Therefore, it is important to stay in Lhasa for a few before your cycling tour to acclimatize to the high altitude of Tibet.

Lhasa to Natmso Lake: Riding to the Holy Lake

Cycling from Lhasa to Namtso Lake is also a popular biking route in Tibet, which offers you wonderful scenery of the northern Tibet grassland and the holy lake Namtso.

The ride from Lhasa to Namtso Lake can be divided into two sections, the first of which is easier and the second of which requires an effort to get over the pass.

Lhasa to Natmso Lake biking tour via Qinghai-Tibet HighwayEnjoying Lhasa to Natmso Lake biking tour via Qinghai-Tibet Highway

The distance of the first section, from Lhasa to Damxung, is about 155km in total. You will cycle along the Qinghai-Tibet Highway. The road condition is pretty good and smooth.

The second section from Damxung to Namtso Lake is about 75 km, during which the Nyechen Thanglha mountain ranges will be within your view all the way.

The most difficult ride on the way to Lake Namtso is to climb Mt. Nagenla Pass at 5190 meters above the sea level. If riding over the pass is too difficult for you, you can ask for 4WD help provided by us that could carry you and your bike to get over the mountain pass.

Lake Namtso in TibetThe stunning scenery of Lake Namtso in Tibet

Once you arrive at Namtso Lake, you can stay one night at the lakeshore to enjoy the starry night and amazing sunrise of the holy lake. You can also cycle around the lakeshore to Tashi Dor Island to explore the meditation caves.

On the way back to Lhasa city, you can ride to Yangpachen from Natmso Lake to enjoy the famous hot spring and relax after the biking tour to Namtso Lake. The distance is about 123km and the road condition is the same as the first section.

Lhasa to Ganden Monastery: Most Popular Short Biking around Lhasa City

This is a very popular cycling route because of its short and reasonable distance (53km) and beautiful landscapes along the route.

The route starts from Lhasa and will be mainly on 318 National Road. The ride route begins upstream along the Lhasa River, and you will pass some farmlands and small villages along the route.

Ganden Monastery in TibetGetting a panoramic view of the Ganden Monastery

During the Lhasa to Ganden Monastery biking tour, you could see sheepherders’ tents green grassland, groups of sheep and yaks, small village huts and nomadic tents by the road.

Lhasa to Central Tibet: A Real Culture Exploration Route

The central Tibet bike tour lasts roughly 11 days, which covers major cultural sites and scenic spots in and around Lhasa city, such as Ganden Monastery, Namtso Lake, Samye Monastery, and Yumbulagang Palace.

The road connecting these destinations around Lhasa are all in good condition. The good accommodation and amazing sceneries along the route make the bicycle tour a pleasant journey.

As a large circle route covers around 766km, most of the route sections are done by business vehicles that carrying you and your bicycle gears. You just need to choose some best sections for the cycle tour for the best cycling experience.

When is the best time to bike in Tibet?

The best time to take a cycling tour in Tibet is from May to October, during which you can enjoy the blue sky and clear weather all the time.

From July to August is the rainy season in Tibet. While most of the rainfall occurs at night and does not affect daytime riding much, some of the dirt roads that are not in good condition may be affected by the rainfall, such as the last section of the Lhasa to Kathmandu cycling route.

Travel documents required for a Tibet biking tour?

For all trips in Tibet, no matter you travel by bike or by overland, you need to have a Tibet Travel Permit in advance so that you can enter Tibet.

Tibet Travel PermitTibet Travel Permit is an essential travel document for your Tibet tour.

For different cycling routes, you may need to apply for some more travel permits, like the Alien’s travel permit for a cycling trip to Everest Base Camp.

The Tibet travel permit can be only applied through a local travel agency, which will offer the full tour services for you. It means that you cannot cycle in Tibet alone without a local guide.

To make things easier, we offer hassle-free Tibet cycling tour packages that can be customized according to your requirements. From the travel permit application to local sightseeing arrangement, from the transfer to/from Tibet to the vehicle supporting during the cycling trip, we will take care of every detail of your trip in Tibet.

More Travel Tips for cycling in Tibet

1. You need to be in good physical condition to ride in Tibet. Also, it is suggested to stop in Lhasa for a few days upon your arrival to get used to the high altitude in Tibet.

2. Slow down your speed when going downhill, as you may encounter brake failure. There have been too many cases of going too fast downhill and hitting the hillside and having an accident. If you are only looking for the thrill when going downhill at high speed, never ignore the possible dangers.

3. Bring the necessary bike repair parts with you. Other luggage can be placed in our support vehicle.

4. Be aware of sun protection since UV rays are particularly strong in Tibet. In addition to sunscreen, sunglasses and hats are also necessary for a biking tour in Tibet.

5. Pay attention to the big of the large temperature differences between day and night in Tibet. It is recommended to bring a jacket that is easy to put on and take off. If you're riding to the destinations at higher altitudes, like Everest Base Camp, you'll also need to bring warm clothing, even in the summer.

6. Between towns and cities, it is difficult to find a store or restaurant. It is suggested to prepare some food or snacks for your cycling trip in Tibet, such as bread, chocolate, energy bars, etc.


Tibet is always on the list of some cyclists who like challenges. Here are the world-famous cycling routes through Mount Everest areas, like the Lhasa to Everest Base Camp cycling route and the Lhasa to Kathmandu cycling route.

Moreover, there are easy biking trips around Lhasa city to the nearby attractions, like a journey to Lake Namtso or the Ganden Monastery.

You can choose your favorite one to go to. Just remember to find a reliable travel agency to get the required travel permits before you go.

Cycling in Tibet, you not only need to prepare for the basics but also beware of altitude sickness, tough living conditions, etc.

To help you arrange your Tibet bike tour smoothly, our local travel consultants are always ready to serve you. Just contact us to get quick and professional travel advice within 24 hours.

Lobsang Tsering

About the Author - Lobsang Tsering

I am a tour guide in Tibet an was Born in Kham Tibet, I am the father of 2 little girls, bachelor's degree. I have more than 7-years experience of being a tour guide in Tibet. I am a warm, friendly, knowledgeable and attractive guy.

Email me about your travel idea

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