September sees the fading of rainy season which starts from July in Tibet. And the cold winter hasn’t approached. The average temperature ranges from 7℃ to 22℃. In the daytime, most days are sunny, amiable and pleasant with only little breeze. A jumper and a long sleeve shirt would be enough.
At night, it can drop to around 5℃, a down coat should be added while you’re outdoors admiring the enormous shining stars. A comfy quilt is enough for a warm and comfortable sleep without need to use electric blanket or air conditioner.
According to Tibetan calendar, July, is when the bathing festival appears. It is when Venus occurs in the sky. Tibetan people believe the water at this time is especially clean and pure, which can cleanse the dirt and cure the sickness, beneficial to health. As a tradition, Tibetan people go to the river shores, taking a bath, doing the laundry, or just enjoying themselves.
Tibetan Calendar: July 6-12 (Late July), which falls in September.
September usually sees the traditional festival celebrating harvest of Tibet produces, of which the Tibetan name is Ongkor Festival. “Ong” means field and “Kor” means circling, so the literal meaning of the festival is to do kora around the fields, in Tibetan. It has a history of 1,500 years, popular among the areas of Lhasa City, Shigatse City and Shannan Prefecture. It is held in July or August according to Tibetan calendar. The exact time depends on the variable farming season. Normally it is held two or three days ahead of the harvesting of Tibet highland barley, and lasts for one to three days. Therefore, the festival is held by different units made of villages or towns, of which the celebration dates are decided by the villagers all together as per the ripening conditions of the crops.
Tibet Ongkor Festival
China’s public schools start the autumn semester on September 1st. If you’re touring Tibet in September, the student tourist groups will have departed and the longest holiday the 7 Day Chinese National Holiday from October 1st to October 7th, has not brought in the swarming tourists of working class. However, the accommodation in Tibet and train tickets into Lhasa can still be difficult to arrange. Since July and August are peak months, we suggest you make reservation in June to guarantee the booking.
The bright days in September will greet you with blue sky, marshmallow-like clouds and least wind. When it is far into the evening, you’ll still need a heavy quilt to get through the chill. And for the first one or two nights, you may feel hard to breathe lying on the bed as if a stone has been placed upon your breast. After a few days of acclimatization in Lhasa, you’ll get adapted to the altitude.
As a matter of policy, foreign tourists must travel with an organized tour arranged by authorized travel agencies, who can also help with reservation of airplane or train tickets by charging certain amount of booking service fee. Some tourists are after more flexibility and would like to seek budget-priced options by their own, in the meantime, they can also avoid the bank service fee charged by international transfer payment via PayPal or other methods. Here we list the official websites where you can book airplane tickets and train tickets yourselves:
Train Tickets Booking Official Website: 12306 China Railway: http://www.12306.cn
Airplane Tickets Booking Websites:
Autumn Forests in Southeast Tibet and Kham Tibet in the West Sichuan
It is the transition month between summer and autumn. The green canopies have been changed into bright multicolored foliage, turning the river valley into a warm mosaic painting, winding along the rivers and decorating the deep valleys between the mighty mountains. From September to November, Mount Shergyla, Lulang Forest Sea, and Scenic Spots of Daocheng Yading enter the most fantastic season, with the miracle of colors.
Note: Daocheng Yading is a scenic spot along the renowned “most beautiful road route”--Sichuan-Tibet overland route, which was once closed to foreign tourists and recently reopened for tourists holding foreign passports in May, 2019.
Rawok Lake along the way from Sichuan to Tibet
Trekking in Mount Kailash:This is one of the best months to trek Mount Kailash. The rainy season has just ended and the freezing weather hasn’t come yet. The relatively mild and stable weather enables the trekking in Mount Kailash in September safe and feasible.
September Average High: 11℃（51.8°F）
September Average low: -1℃（30.2°F）
Sightseeing in Mount Everest: It is slightly wet, and pleasantly warm in the daytime, making September one of the three best months to tour Mount Everest; the rest two is May, and early October. September is the high season of Tibet travel. The accommodation along the popular route from Lhasa to Mount Everest will possibly fully be booked out. To book a tour with travel agencies two months in advance is highly recommended.
September Average High: 18℃（62.6°F）
September Average low: 4℃（39.2°F）
The most popular golden route of Tibet tour includes the destinations of Lhasa (Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, Barkhor Street, Drepung Monastery, Sera Monastery), Yamdrok Lake, Gyantse (Gyantse Kumbum), Shigatse (Tashilhunpo Monastery), Lhasa. This circuit route takes you to explore two culture abundant cities beyond Lhasa, where the unique local characterization and various facets of Tibetan Buddhism can be taken a glimpse at. Moreover, if you are aqua lover, the sacred lake Yamdrok or an optional extended tour to Lake Pumoyongcuo can quench your crave for pure and delicate water view. Whether you’re traveling for culture or nature beauty, this route will treat you generously.
Recommended Tibet tours inSeptember: