Where is Tibet? 90% of People are Wrong!

Are you still confused about the general term “Tibetan Area”? Is Tibet equal to Tibetan Area?


What exactly is “Amdo” “Kham” and “U-Tsang” that we often heard of?


Do you still only think of Potala Palace and Mt. everest when talking about Tibet? And thinking you'll only have to get a Tibet permit to visit Tibet?


Don't worry, today we will explain everything about Tibet to you in the most comprehensible way! And to introduce you the absolutely stunning side of Tibet you never knew about! 

 

Is "Tibet" equal to "Tibetan Area"?
- No

To put it simply, Tibet belongs to Tibetan Area, but Tibetan Region is far more than just Tibet.

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Usually, Tibet refers to “Tibet Autonomous Region” - TAR. TAR is regarded as what the item Tibet indicates by most people globally in the modern world.

However, Tibet Autonomous Region covers only 50% of the land mass of the Tibetan Plateau. Roughly 60% of the Tibetan people live outside of the TAR in other regions of Tibet.

 

The term “Tibetan Area” encompasses the entire Tibetan Plateau where the Tibetan people are native to. This includes all counties of TAR, 95% of the land area of Qinghai province, southwest Gansu, northern Sichuan, western Sichuan, and far northwest Yunnan.

 

Traditionally Tibet is divided into three specific regions - U-Tsang, Kham and Amdo.


*Useful info:

For foreigners making a tour to Tibet Autonomous Region, Tibet permits is required. But if you making a Tibet tour to other Tibetan areas, like Amdo Tibetan Area or Kham Tibetan Area, you do not need to apply for Tibet permits.

 
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Where is “Amdo”“Kham” and “U-Tsang”?

According to various topographic features and the dialects distribution, Tibetan-populated area used to be divided into three proportions, namely U-tsang, Amdo, and Kham in Tibetan. Together they comprise the majority parts of Tibetan Plateau.

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U-Tsang
land of faith

卫藏
Including-TAR: Lhasa/Shigatse/Shannan/Ngari

U-tsang is situated in the south-central Tibet in the old time and now, with the capital city Lhasa as the regional center. It indicates the area with Lhasa, Shigatse, Shannan, and Ngari and believed as the most fundamental part of Tibet in the history and now, with the religious and administrative significance. Beside the renowned Polata Palace and Mt. everest, there's so much more stunning natural and cultural sites to see!

 

Hidden gems of U-Tsang

 

Zhada Earth Forest
📍 Ngari, Tibet
札达土林,阿里,西藏

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Ruins of Guge Kingdom 
📍 Ngari, Tibet
古格王朝遗址,阿里,西藏

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Qilin Gorge
📍 Shigatse, Tibet
奇林峡,日喀则,西藏

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Yerpa
📍 Lhasa, Tibet
扎叶巴寺,拉萨,西藏

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Kula Kangri
📍 Shannan, Tibet
库拉冈日,山南,西藏

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Gyantse Fortress
📍 Shigatse, Tibet
宗山遗址,日喀则,西藏

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Kham
thousand mountains

康巴
Including- 
Sichuan: Garzê Prefecture
Yunnan: Diqing Prefecture
TAR: Chamdo/east Nyingchi

Situated in the Hengduan Mountain area of east Tibetan Plateau, Kham region is also considered as the "Greater Shangri-La Core Area"  and renowned for it's magnificent nature, such as the world-famous Daocheng Yading and Shangri-La Tiger Leaping Gorge. It is also the transition zone between the habitants of Han Chinese and Tibetan and believed as the "corridor of culture"

 

Cuopugou
📍 Garze, Sichuan
措普沟,甘孜,四川

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White Water Terrace · Baishuitai
📍Diqing, Yunnan
白水台,迪庆,云南

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Laigu Glacier & Rakwa Tso
📍 Chamdo, Tibet
来古冰川 & 然乌湖,昌都,西藏

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Zizhu Temple
📍Changdu, Tibet
孜珠寺,昌都,西藏

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Mount Gongga
📍 Garze, Sichuan
贡嘎雪山,甘孜,四川

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Seda Wuming Buddhist Academy
📍 Garze, Sichuan
色达五明佛学院,甘孜,四川

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Tagong Grassland & Tagong Monastery
📍 Garze, Sichuan
塔公草原 & 塔公寺,甘孜,四川

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Daocheng Yading
📍 Garze, Sichuan
稻城亚丁,甘孜,四川

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Amdo
land of nomads

安多
Including- 
Sichuan: Ngawa Prefecture
Gansu: Gannan
Qinghai: 95% of Qinghai province
TAR: Nagqu

Amdo covers most of Qinghai Province, part of northwest Sichuan Province, and southwest of Gansu Province. It has always contributed as the biggest pastureland in the Tibetan-populated area, breeding good horses. Influenced greatly by the two ethnic neighbors Han Chinese and Mongolians, the folk custom and culture here though still typically Tibetan, are very distinctive by the amalgamation.

 

Lianbaoyeze
📍 Ngawa, Sichuan
莲宝叶则,阿坝,四川

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Jiuzhaigou & Huanglong
📍Ngawa, Sichuan
九寨沟 & 黄龙,阿坝,四川

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Ganjia Grassland & Baishiya
📍Gannan, Gansu
甘加草原 & 白石崖,甘南,甘肃

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Namtso
📍Nagqu, Tibet
纳木错,那曲,西藏

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Tibetan Area is a vast and diverse region full of undiscovered natural wonders and cutural miracles. It takes Joseph Rock nearly 30 years to explore yet mystery still remain.


If you are fascinated by Tibetan culture, yet find it difficult to visit TAR right now, head for western Sichuan, Gannan Gansu, Diqing Yunnan would be the ideal choice. Trust us, these beautiful destinations will surprise you in every aspect!

 

Special Offers

OKDeal Travel offers a variety of Tibetan Regions Tour packages to suit all your traveling needs. Whether it’s going on a remote camping trip or relaxing at a luxurious resort, I can help you design exactly the vacation you want. Read through my list of specials and see if anything catches your eye. Get in touch to start planning your next getaway today.

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2022 Year-Round Classic Tibet Tour - Lhasa/Shigaste/EBC

Start From  5599rmb/person

A classic 8-day tour that includes all of the iconic Tibet destinations, offering fabulous monasteries, breathtaking high-altitude walks, stunning views of the world’s highest mountains and one of the warmest cultures you will ever encounter.


An ideal choice to fully experience the magnificient nature and fascinating culture of the sacred land of the Himalaya.

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2022 Year-Round【Gannan, Amdo - Wild Land of Tibetan Nomads】

Start From 5999rmb/person

In this 7-day in-depth tour, you’ll adventure through the vast yet unspoiled pure land of Gannan area, into a dazzling world of colossal mountains, majestic canyons, ancient glacial landforms, vibrant grasslands, turbulent rivers, primitive forest, fairytale hidden valleys and alluring lakes,  and taking a cultural pilgrimage to some of China’s most important Tibetan Buddhism sites, thousand-year-old grottoes, and experience authentic Tibetan nomads life!

Check Details
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2022 Year-Round【Shangri-La/Blue Moon Valley/Tiger Leaping Gorge】

Start From 6599rmb/person

In this 7-day tour perfectly combined with nature and culrue, you’ll fully explore the mysterious Shangri-La Dukezong town, to breathe in the Tibetan world, visiting legendary Ganden Sumtseling Monastery, learning to make Tangka art, and dining with Tibetan family; You'll also embark on an epic journey to hike the famous Tiger Leaping Gorge, explore the stunning Blue Moon Valley, visit the magnificent Balagezong Canyon, and spend relaxing time in Napa Lake.

 
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2022 Year-Round【Qinghai & Gansu TOP 1 Legendary 8-Day Silk Road Tour】

Start From  6999rmb/person

Discover the treasures of the legendary Silk Road on this 8-day adventure through the gigantic regions of northwest China - an almost dizzying agglomeration of desert, grassland, raging river and colossal mountains - retracing the ancient trade route that linked East and West. 


An epic journey across diverse landscapes to see some of the country’s most sublime natural scneries and cultural relics. From the unreal Rainbow Mountain and miracle desert oasis to the final frontier of China's Great Wall and rock-cut Buddhist masterpieces, this is an unforgettable Eastern odyssey.

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【Last Pure Land】Daocheng Yading In-Depth Tour

Start From 7699rmb/person

The wild Western Sichuan is definitely one of the bucket-list destinations in China for outdoor lovers, the “Soul of Shangri-La” with extremely dreaming wonderland. 

In this tour, you'll drive along the 318 National Highway, the TOP 1 most beautiful self-driving route, into “the last pure land on our blue planet”, feasting your eyes on a dizzying agglomeration of golden forests, pure blue alphine lakes, beautiful autumn meadows, sacred snow mountains, rich Tibetan Buddhist cultural heritages, and discover China's best-kept secret where explorer Joseph Rock wanted to visit again and again. 

Check Details
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【Hike in Kham】Holy Yala Snow Mountain 7-Day Winter Tour

Start From 6399rmb/person

In this 7-day in-depth trip, you’ll have the chance to hike into this mysterious paradise leaded by professional Tibetan guide; passing serene highland lakes, wild natural pasture, verdant origin forest, grand ancient glaciers, amazing natural hot springs, and to closely appreciate its scared perennially snow-capped mountain peaks.