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On this page you will find a map of Tibet and some information about the country. The map is a detail of a Map of the World published by Planet Poster Editons in Germany.


This Map of the World costs 11.50 Euros, it is described in detail at (only in German) and can be ordered at


Official name of country: Pö (= Bod)

Official script of the country: Tibetan/tibetisch, Chinese/chinesisch

Capital: Lhasa.

Number of inhabitats: see


Map of Tibet


Map of Tibet with surrounding areas. - Landkarte von Tibet. - Mapa de Tibet. - Carte de Tibet.


The capital of Tibet is Lhasa, which is also the biggest city of the country. Flights to Tibet probably do not exist, except for the army. The usual way to go to Tibet is by bus following a route Lanzhou-Xining-Golmud-Lhasa.
The independent country of Tibet was occupied violently in 1949 by the Chinese army, after a short and for the Tibetans hopeless fight, 1950 the country was added to the Chinese territory. Since then China claims to possess Tibet. China has invested much money in infrastructure, has constructed roads and even a railway track, but did not ask the Tibetans whether they wished the Chinese to do so or not. The Tibetan exile government under the leadership of the Dalai Lama is located since then in Daramsala, India.
China assigned the occupied country to several different Chinese provinces. This was done deliberately, in order to get the majority of Tibetans to live in provinces where they are in a strong minority position without any official recognition of their language.
The main area of the former Tibetan state, around the city of Lhasa in the southwest, was called Xizang (this is what Chinese officially understand under the term "Tibet" today), with the towns of Lhasa, Ruthog, Gar, Burang, Gertse, Amdo, Nakchu, Shigatse, Nyingtri und Chamdo. Large rivers have their sources in this region, such as the Indus (= Sind, in Tibetan Sengge) and the Brahmaputra (in Tibetan Damchog Kanbab in the west, Tsangpo in the east). The river Salween, flowing to Myanmar, is called Nu Jiang in Chinese - this river should also have a Tibetan name since it source is in Xizang near Nakchu.
A small part of Tibet belongs at present to the province of Yunnan, and a relatively large part to the province of Sichuan. The Tibetan towns of Batang and Litang are located there. If the inhabitants from there like to study in Chengdu at the university, they have to learn Chinese and get in trouble if they desire to cultivate, promote and research on their native Tibetan language and culture.
The border of the former Tibet, in our map indicated as a red dotted line, passes northwards from Sichuan through a region at present subdivided between the provinces of Gansu and Qinghai. Only small areas of Gansu belonged to Tibet, but nearly the whole area of Qinghai. Except the area around the big city of Xining - which belonged to China and was connected to Qinghai and the former Tibetan state area for tactical reasons. By this one Han Chinese city alone the Tibetans became automatically a minority, their language was not recognized officially in Qinghai. The other localities in Qinghai are much smaller: Golmud, Da Qaidam and Delingha. The area is heavily controlled by the army, China is still scared of possible independency movements. Also many young Tibetans in these regions seem to acknowledge the Dalai Lama as their real head of state.
Large rivers have their sources in Qinghai: the Yellow River, in Chinese Huang He, in Tibetan Ma Chu, and the Jangtse, in modern Chinese not Jangtsekiang, but Chang Jiang, and in the Tibetan mountains Jinsha Jiang. This large river has two source rivers, in Tibetan these are called Chu Mar and Dre Chu.
Tibet is the roof of the world, the highest widely settled region, with some of the highest mountains of the planet. Most 8000-meter peaks are located in the main Himalaya chain in Nepal and Kashmir, but several 7000-meter peaks are located in Tibet. The peak that is locally named Chomolungma, its western name being Mount Everest, is located partly in Nepal and partly in Tibet.

The official countrywide language of the areas administrated by China is Chinese. Only in the province of Xizang Tibetan is official - but the Tibetan script is not tought in schools and the script is rarely used in the public. We have tried to show the spellings of the names of the towns and rivers in the Tibetan script. But it was our scope to present the local names in the scripts that are in reality used in the countries. The Tibetan script is certainly not used any more in many parts of what once had been Tibet. It is even questionable if the script, which derived far more than 1000 years ago from an Indian Brahmi script and thus, has a completely different source than the Chinese script, is really used in the public in Xizang. The Tibetan alphabet has another problem, like most other scripts derived from Brahmi: the characters represent a very old pronounciation and one has to know how the words are spelled correctly. It is not possible to construct a spelling for a word by hearing it and then connecting the alphabet's characters like in Spanish. This means that teaching is an important issue - and not paying teachers to teach the Tibetan script, the Chinese are in possession of a simple method to prevent the script from being widely used any more. The Tibetan spellings in our map are derived from literature sources of Göttingen University that predated the Chinese occupation.
China is so scared of eventual independency movements in Tibet, that even the primary school books all over China insist emphatically on the "fact" that Tibet is a part of China.

Tourism is quite important in Tibet. The problems having to do with the ongoing occupation of Tibet by China are not easily recognizable by tourists. The officials show only the beautiful side. Tourist activities are controlled by the state, and possible contacts of western tourists with Tibetans are prevented with any possible means. This happens rarely in the practice, usually the tourists are hardly ever informed, and second, there are serious language barriers. We would appreciate more detailed information, also about tourism, flights, or individual tours to Tibet. With questions in certain situations, tourists can potentially contribute to Chinese administrators beginning to change their mind. In a global world, China would profit economically in the same extension from Tibet if the country was independent. Other small countries have also re-gained their independence after long years of occupation by powerful nations, such as Eritrea, East Timor of the Baltic republics. Tibet is definitely in this list and still waiting. In the Baltic republics, after the Soviets had settled many Russians there, the local people were in a minority in their own country (same with East Timor) - but surprisingly, in free elections and independency is also supported by those groups of the population.


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This is our Map of the World with original scripts (original size 70 x 100 cm), from which the detailed map shown above has been cut out. The numbers of city inhabitants and vegetational zones were researched by hand for every country, by using the sources listed below. This procedure prevented the map from containing traditional errors provoked by simply copying such information from previous maps.

The map can be ordered for 11.50 Euros (+ postage and packing) at


Sources on which the information contained in this map is based:


The vegetational base map was aligned with satellite pictures from Google Earth.

The official names of the countries are quite well researched at

Also here you can find information on the geography of many countries:

The numbers of inhabitants of the cities were taken from

And the mountain peak altitudes were largely derived form


This is the link to the sitemap, where all areas with maps are linked.



The Map of the World was compiled by F. Welter-Schultes (Planet Poster Editions, Göttingen, Germany). Copyright (c) 2006 R. Krätzner & F. Welter-Schultes.

Commercial reprints of detailed maps like this one, including on commercial web pages, are not principally excluded, but require explicite permission of the publisher. We will be pleased to grant such a permission, prices are individually negociable and certainly not too expensive.
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Reprints for non-commercial purposes are even less complicated - but also in these cases please inform the publisher in advance, and in any case mention the source