Where is Tibet?

Tibet is located to the south-west of China, also bordering India, Nepal, Burma and Bhutan.

Tibet’s three original provinces are U-Tsang, Kham and Amdo. The people in these regions all consider themselves Tibetan, although each has a strong identity and different dialects of Tibetan are used.

Under China’s occupation, Tibet has been divided up, renamed and incorporated into Chinese provinces, with little reference to the original borders between Tibet's provinces. When China refers to Tibet, it means the Tibet Autonomous Region or TAR, which includes only U-Tsang and part of Kham. The remainder of Kham was divided between Sichuan and Yunnan Chinese provinces. Amdo was divided between Gansu, Sichuan and Qinghai provinces. 

The historical territory of Tibet would make it the world's 10th largest nation by geographical area.

Maps of historical Tibet and occupied Tibet

  • Map showing the historical territory and three main regions of Tibet
    Map showing the original three regions of Tibet

    Tibet's historical territory and the three main regions of U-Tsang, Amdo and Kham.

  • Tibet divided by China
    Map showing China's Tibet

    Today's Tibet under occupation: only part of historic Tibet is included in the TAR and other areas have become regions of China.