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Shigatse, the second largest city of Tibet, enjoys a convenient transportation system within the region. The land is traversed by 318 National Highway, Shigatse-Nedong Highway, Lhasa-Purang Highway and Sino-Nepal Highway, which directly link Shigatse with Lhasa and Nepal, and converge the 17 counties within the region.

How to Get there

Travelers to Shigatse, first need to get to Lhasa by air, railway or bus and then transfer to Shigatse by bus or rental car. Buses regularly depart from Lhasa Coach Station to Shigatse. Shigatse is about 300 km. (186 mi.) away from Lhasa, and the ride takes around 7 hours. While in Lhasa North Suburb Passenger Station one can arrange a direct trip to Zhangmu Town or Sakya County in Shigatse.  

Transportation within Shigatse

 Shigatse City
Once in Shigatse, The Shigatse Coach Station located in the Jiefang Zhonglu has buses to Nedong, Sakya, Gyangtse, Lhatse, among other destinations, and back to Lhasa. Additionally, minibuses to Lhasa or Lhatse wait at the roadside by the Coach Station and in the west of the square of Tashilhunpo Monastery, which usually depart between 7:30 and 8:30 a.m. when occupied fully. 

Hiring a car is the first choice of many travelers to the remote areas there; but the options are more limited than in Lhasa. One well-known car rental company is the China International Travel Service Cor. Ltd (CITS) located beside Shigatse Hotel. The rental price for a car is usually CNY 3 – CNY 4.5 per kilometer according to the class of the car. Apart from the distance, the price can also be decided by the time. To get to Rongbuk Monastery (Mt. Everest and Zhangmu Town), generally, the price points for renting a car are: CNY 3400 (3 days); CNY 3800 (+Nepal border, single trip); CNY 4400 (+Nepal border, roundtrip).

Shigatse is not such a large city, so walking is the best choice to travel in the city. However, pedicabs and taxies are widely accessible. The charge for the pedicab is usually CNY 2-3, while CNY 10 for taxies wherever you go in the city.

 Sakya County
Buses depart regularly from Shigatse City to Sakya County, from the front of the Sakya Town Guest House, the trip takes about 5 hours, and costs about CNY 27. The departure times from Shigatse are 8:30, 10:30 and 15:30, while those from Sakya are 10:00, 13:00 and 14:30. For transportation to Lhatse and New Tingri (Xegar), one can find a tractor or other kind of vehicle to the Sino-Nepal Road, 25 km.(15.5 mi.) away from Sakya, then catch a passing bus or other vehicle there.

 Gyangtse County
Gyangtse is about 77 km. (48 mi.) away from Shigatse, which can be reached by minibus found outside the Shigatse Coach Station, costing about CNY 12 and taking 2 hours. For the return trip, one can catch a minibus at the cross of some wide roads in the county.

To get to Tingri from Shigatse, one must transfer buses in Lhatse. The trip via this route costs about CNY 40. To continue through to Rongbuk Monastery (Mt. Everest and Zhangmu) in the county, it is best to rent a car in either Lhasa or Shigatse, as it is difficult to find a vehicle in New Tingri.

 Nyalam County
Traveling from Zhangmu to Nylam is simple, because there are many passing buses to the border here. The buses usually depart before 10:00 am.

 Lhatse County
To get to Lhatse, one can take the minibus in the west of the square of Tashilhunpo Monastery in the morning, which costs CNY 30. For traveling to New Tingri and Zhangmu from here, one can find a vehicle about 150 m. (93 mi.) east of Lhatse Hotel. The charge is around CNY 40 for New Tingri and CNY 150 for Zhangmu.

Travelers to Zhangmu usually travel by hired vehicle. However, buses regularly depart from Shigatse City; be aware these buses operate without a fixed time schedule. If one would like to travel through Tingri County it is best to rent a car in either Lhasa or Shigatse. At the peak season, buses usually depart at 9:00 am; the trip takes two days and requires one night stay in Tingri; one can expect to pay around CNY 70. The town is only 8 km. (5 mi.) away from the Friendship Bridge,  and one can hitchhike there, which costs about CNY 15 or one can take about a two-hour walk to the town.

Related Link: Transportation of Tibet
Comments and Questions


Can I, as a tourist/foreigner take the bus from Lhasa to Shigatse, and then from Shigatse to Zhangmu?


8/17/2010 2:35:00 PM


Asked by Liran (Israel)

if you have got your entry permit and other related documents for Tibet, then i think you can take the buses. for detailed information about the permit, you may refer to the following page

8/17/2010 8:32:00 PM