Update on Protected Area Permits

We’ve received word that the Government of India has issued changes in policy regarding the requirement of Protected Area Permits (PAPs) in the Bir Tibetan Colony (and other Tibetan settlements, such as Chauntra).

Three key points:

  • Foreigners require a PAP only for overnight stays in the Bir Tibetan Colony (or other Tibetan settlements). No PAP is required for day visits to the Tibetan Colony (or, for example, Chauntra).
  • Foreigners only need a PAP if you are staying in the Tibetan Colony itself. If you are staying in an Indian area, such as an Indian hotel or guest house outside of the Tibetan Colony, for example in Chowgan or in Bir proper (“Upper Bir”), then no PAP is required.
  • If you are staying in Bir and visiting Chauntra you only need the PAP for Bir, not for Chauntra (and vice versa if you are staying in Chauntra and visiting Bir, you only need the PAP for Chauntra, not for Bir).

To apply for a permit for to stay in Bir Tibetan Colony, you need to apply at the¬†District Commissioner’s office in Dharamshala.