New railway to further boost tourism in Chinese Tibet


A new railway which started operations last month in the Tibet Autonomous Region (southwest of China) connecting the regional capital Lhasa to the city of Nyingchi is expected to contribute to the development of tourism as it brings more convenience to visitors.

In June, Nyingchi received 1.24 million tourists, up 15.33% from 2019, the year before the COVID-19 outbreak, according to figures released Thursday by the tourism development bureau of the city.

In the first half of this year, the city received 5.03 million domestic and foreign tourists, up 10.89% from the same period in 2019, while tourism revenue increased by 7.06% per compared to 2019 to reach 3.93 billion yuan ($ 608 million).

The opening of the Lhasa-Nyingchi Railway, Tibet‘s first electrified railway, will bring new opportunities for tourism development, the office said.

The railway officially began operations on June 25. Compared to road transport, it cuts the travel time from Lhasa to Nyingchi from 5 hours to about 3.5 hours.

Zhang Rundong, deputy head of the Party bureau, said that due to the new railway, the city is expected to see its tourism target surpass the target of 10 million visitors this year.

“We are convinced that the tourism sector will experience strong growth in the future,” he said.

Tibet has set itself the goal of receiving 61 million tourists per year and generating annual tourism revenues of 64 billion yuan by 2025.