Secrets of the Silk Road

On January 5, 2012, in Cultural Experience, Must-sees, Xinjiang, by Jack Li

As the limitless desert landscape of the Tarim Basin in Western China stretches, a wide array of geographical boundaries and differing terrains come together to form a crossroad between the East and the West. The crossroad was soon renamed The Silk Road by German geographer and explorer, Ferdinand Freiherr von Richthofen. The Silk Road was renowned for its lavish trade and human interaction and migration, between China, India, Rome, Persia, Arabia and Greek subjects, as the flux of nomads, missionaries, merchants and missionaries began to influence China’s development. Recent excavations of the area have found a number of well-preserved Caucasian looking mummies, which are substantially taller than the average population of the time.

It is estimated that these mummies date back 3,800 years, suggesting human interaction and migration on the route between East and West was well traveled.  The mystery and enigmatic atmosphere which surrounds the origins of the ancient explorers, has captured the imagination of travelers from around the world, and has incited many to journey to China to trek the ancient road.

Several of these ancient people of unknown descent were laid to rest adorned with western influenced customs, textiles and articles. This suggests that a diverse exchange and amalgamation of technology, religion, races, language, arts and customs was flourishing for some time. China travel offers a number of travel opportunities to explore the mysteries of Central Asia and the Silk Road, which include the differing journeys made by ancient travelers along the various routes such as the Southern Silk Road, the Northern Silk Road and the Silk Road tour from the Sea. China Tours explore the historical trade route from Xian in Central China, up to Urumqi in North Western China. The tour’s spectacular scenery will astonish you, while the surrounding mystery  will engage your imagination.

Along the ancient Silk Road travelers’ will come across a large percentage of Chinese Minority Ethnic Groups, such as the Uigur, Tibetan and Mongolian minorities who have their own languages and cultural traditions.

 

The tour will introduce a number of these minorities throughout trip along the Silk Road. Highlights of the journey include the Terracotta Warriors and Horses, the Big Wild Goose Pagoda and Shaanxi Historical Museum in Xian. Traveling North West you will experience the spectacular Mogao Grottoes, Echoing-Sand Mountain, Crescent Lake and have camel riding opportunities’ in Dunhuang.  Further along in Turfan, travelers will explore Gaochang Ancient City, Grape Valley, Bezeklik Thousand Buddha Caves and journey through Flaming Mountain on the way to Urumqi.

The tour begins in Beijing and ends in Shanghai allowing travelers explore some of China’s biggest cities on the East Coast and untouched small minority villages in the far North West. Travelers will have the chance to immerse themselves in China’s rich history and culture. For more information on Silk Road tours visit Air China for current specials if the thought of journeying along one of the most ancient and mystical roads captures your imagination!

 

Jack Li
 

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