During the first half of 2023, Tibet’s tourism industry experienced a resurgence with the introduction of new activities and routes. As a result, the market potential has steadily increased. According to data from the Autonomous Region, from January to June 2023, the region welcomed 24.2411 million domestic and foreign tourists, representing a 41.15% year-on-year increase. Additionally, the total revenue generated from tourism reached 26.039 billion yuan (about US$ 3.65 billion), reflecting a 47.51% year-on-year increase.
Every day, crowds of tourists wait in line to enter popular scenic spots like the Potala Palace, Jokhang Temple, and Tibet Museum. Even finding tickets for the Potala Palace can be difficult, requiring reservations to be made ten days in advance.
Tourists are flocking to Barkhor Street in increasing numbers, in addition to the famous Potala Palace. During a recent visit, the reporter observed numerous tourists taking Tibetan-themed photos every few tens of meters along the main road surrounding Barkhor Street. In the more unique alleys and along the walls, there were often four or five groups of tourists waiting in line to take pictures.
According to Ctrip Group, a prominent Chinese tour operator, travel orders bound for Tibet have increased by 103% in the first half of this year compared to 2019. This growth is attributed to the Tibet tourism department’s active promotion of tourism in the region, advancements in tourism products, and improvements in tourism infrastructure. As a result, the Tibet tourism market is experiencing a positive continued growth trend, with ample consumption potential during the summer tourist season.
As the summer tourist season continues, the Tourism Development Department of the Autonomous Region is working to enhance the travel experiences of visitors. This includes inspecting key scenic spots, star hotels, and travel agencies to ensure compliance with regulations and cracking down on any violations in the tourism market. To cater to the diverse needs of tourists, the department has also introduced several new tourism routes across seven cities and regions.