Cycling in Amdo
The roads in Amdo are good but there is the matter of elevation! Cycling itineraries are customized according to your preferences, your physical conditioning, the number of days at your disposal and your budget for vehicular transportation (vans and land cruisers) and lodgings. Your guides will always be Tibetan. A Tibet Travel Permit is not required and most trips start from Chengdu or Xining.
Trips include camping equipment and supplies, meals, support vehicle, guide and cook. Here are some suggestions:
Chengdu to Labrang where you will visit the largest and most famous monastery in Amdo. (10-12 days)
Xining to Labrang ( 6-9 days)
Chengdu to Zoige Wetland or Hongguan ( 6-9 days)
This trip leads to one of the most beautiful wetlands in the world. At 3,600m/11,800 ft above sea level, the Zoige Wetlands cover an area of about 2,600 sq km/1004 sq miles. Zoige is an important base area of biodiversity as well as a representation of an alpine wetland ecosystem. With 1 million hectares of peat bogs, carex swamps, lakes and wetland grass, the region is the breeding grounds of the black-neck crane and other species protected under the Gaihai National Nature Reserve and Zoige National Nature Reserve.
Xining to Qinghai Lake (2-4 days)
Historically, Qinghai Lake has served as a half-way mark between Tibet and Mongolia. The massive lake is home to Bird Island, one of the most popular attractions in the region. Up to 100,000 migratory birds crowd its banks, including the endangered black-necked cranes, cormorants, sandpipers and others. Bird-watchers should visit between March and April.
Xining to Repkong Town (5-7 days)
This trip takes you to well-know small town that is famous for producing some of Tibet's best thangkas (Buddhist scroll paintings) and painted statues. Repkong is a great place to meet artists and purchase paintings. The valley and surrounding hills are easily explored on foot.