Shigatse Guide

Shigatse map

Shigatse, located in the southern part of Tibet Autonomous Region, is bordered by Ngari Prefecture  to the west, Naqu  to the north, Lhasa City  and Shannan  to the east, and Nepal, Bhutan and India to the south. The borderline is 1507 kms long. Shigatse covers a total area of 182,000 square km stretching 800 km from east to west and 220 km from south to north. It has a population of about 110,000, accounting for one fourth of the total population of Tibet, with a density of about 3.7 people per square km. The population concentrates along Yarlung Tsangpo River while the agriculture-nomad area in the west is be sparsely populated.

Shigatse lies between the middle part of the Himalaya range and the middle part of Nyenchen Tangulha Mountains . The terrain is high in the south and north with Yarlung Tsangpo River  in between. The average altitude is 3836 metres. The average oxygen level is 67%. Himalaya lying across south is the highest and largest mountain range in the world. The main peaks include Mt.Everest , Lhotse, Makalu, Cho Oyu, Mt. Shishapangma , all of which have an average altitude above 8000 metres. Mount Everest, located in the junction of Shigatse and Nepal, has an altitude of 8848.13 metres, making it the highest mountain in the world.

Mt. Everest in the sunset

There are more than 100 rivers within the area such as Yarlung Tsangpo River, Nyang Chu River and Gyirong River, most of which belong to Indian Ocean Water System. The part of Yarlung Tsangpo River within the area is 700 km long. There are over 40 lakes including Yamdrok Lake  and Peikutso Lake , most of which are inland salt water lakes. Lake Peikutso is the largest lake in Shigatse. The air is thin, air pressure is low and oxygen level is also quite low. Solar radiation and ultraviolet radiation is strong. The annual temperature difference is small but the daily temperature difference is huge. The average annual sunshine duration is 3300 hours. The average annual temperature in subfrigid western part is 0℃, and 6.5℃ in the temperate eastern part. It is rainy season from May to September which is mild and humid with the rainfall making up 90% of the annual total amount. The snowfall is quite small within the region, which concentrates in Pagri, Nyalam and south of Tingri . The weather in Yadong, Zhangmu, Gyirong , Chentang and Rongxia on the southern side of Himalaya is warm all the year round, with an annual rainfall of 1000mm.

Tashilhunpo monastery in Shigaste

Shigatse is praised as "the home of song and dance". Folk dance include Duixie and Guoxie while folk music include love songs, pastoral songs, drinking songs and wishing songs. The founder of Tibetan opera, Tangtong Gyalpo, was born in Ngamring County; therefore Shigatse is regarded as the original place of Tibetan opera. The blue mask of Tibetan opera has four different schools and three of them are in Shigatse: Jiongba school of Ngamring County, Jianggaer school of Rinbung County and Xiangba school of Namling County, which enjoy high reputation internationally. New Year, Lunar New Year, Tibetan New Year and Shigatse New Year are four important festivals in Shigatse, among which Shigatse New Year is celebrated most solemnly. There are 609 cultural relics of 35 kinds in Shigatse, making it the second largest cultural relics of the whole region. There are 6 major attractions including Tashilhumpo Monastery , Sakya Monastery , Shalu Monastery , Palcho Monastery , Gyantse Dzong , Nyethang Drolma Temple. In addition, there is the Mount Everest  Nature Reserve. Since 2001 the annual Mt. Everest Cultural Tourism Festival is held in Shigatse. It is a collective show of quality folk cultural products of Shigatse, which attracts tourists from all over the world.

Travelers' Questions Might Help

The questions raised by our past customers can help you get a more clear picture about tours to Tibet, read them or tell us your own questions please contract us, our specialists will reply you within 24 hours.

Ms. Ho*** from: When to get my Tibet permit
January 15, 2020 05:11

Hello, we are considering to travel in Tibet in summer. We are a family of 5, two adults and three kids, age 13(then), 10, 8. We are interested in the 10 days Mt. EBC & Namtso Lake Group tour. We are US citizens with valid 10-year Chinese multiple entry visa, which we have applied when we went to Beijing in 2019. We are currently living in South Korea.  


1. Are kids suitable (or even allowed) for this tour?  

2. If kids can join, are there any discount deals for kids?

Answered by Helen
January 15, 2020 07:54

Dear Ms. Ho***,

    Greetings from Helen at Budget Tibet Tour and welcome you to join our 10 days Mt. Everest & Namtso Lake group tour. For your questions: 1. Your kids are suitable for this tour. Travelling in Tibet is as safe for kids as it is for their parents. While the high Tibetan plateau may be the highest place on the planet, very often, the kids that visit this region are more adaptable and have fewer problems than their parents. We also have arranged wonderful Tibet tours for many families with kids such as a tour to EBC for a family with a 3-year-old son, a 9-year-old girl and a 11-year-old boy, they did have fun in Tibet and there is no problem for them. Or you can take some medicine under the guidance of doctor to prevent high altitude before enter Tibet. 2. If kids travel with you, we'll offer some discount for them, please check your email and find more detailed information. Thanks & Regards

Email to Helen about any question or tell us your own questions via the form on the right side

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