Spiti Valley is a cold desert mountain valley located high in the Himalayas in the north-eastern part of the northern Indian state of Himachal Pradesh. The name "Spiti" means "The Middle Land", i.e. the land between Tibet and India. The valley and surrounding region is one of the least populated regions in India and is the gateway to the northernmost reaches of the nation. Spiti valley is a research and cultural centre for Buddhists. Highlights include Key Monastery and Tabo Monastery, one of the oldest monasteries in the world and a favourite of the Dalai Lama