The Tibetan plateau encompasses a huge area but it has been sliced into almost half. The Western half is the Tibetan Autonomous Region with Lhasa as its capital. The Eastern half is part of China even though the TAR is occupied by China. Visit to any part of the TAR requires a special permit on top of a visa for China. I read that currently the TAR is closed to foreign visitors. But one can still visit a lot of areas in the other Eastern half of the Tibetan plateau where a lot of ethnic Tibetans still live and practise their culture. There are numerous and important Tibetan monasteries and temples in these areas. They say that China took the better half of the Tibetan plateau which is lush and green. This was our first foray and a very brief one into the Amdo part of the Eastern Tibetan plateau.