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Silk Road

The Silk Road is an historic trade route, dating back more than 2,000 years, where visitors can follow the path taken by Marco Polo and other explorers who first established commerce between East and West. Today, the Silk Road is an unforgettable journey through a wide variety of natural beauty, fascinating culture, and living history.

With a total length over more than 7,000 km (approximately 4,350 miles), the Silk Road was among the first links between Asia and Europe. Beginning in Xi’an (formerly Chang’an), the route moves west through the provinces of Shaanxi, Gansu, Nigxia, Qinghai and Xinjiang, crosses the Pamirers (formerly Congling Ridge), then enters Central Asia, the Middle East and finally reaches the eastern shores of the Mediterranean Sea. In China alone, the Silk Road accounts for more than 4,000 km (approximately 2,485 miles).

Tourists are attracted to the Silk Road for the many fascinating experiences to be re-discovered, such as historical relics, places of interest, magnificent natural scenery and local customs. Some of the particular historical sites and artifacts include:

  • the Terra Cotta Warriors, renowned as the eighth wonder of the world;
  • Famen Temple, which stores relics of Sakyamuni Buddha,
  • Dunhuang Mogao Grottoes and Maijishan Grottoes;
  • Jiayuguan (Pass) of the Great Wall;
  • the historic site of the beacon tower in Han Dynasty, Ta’er Monastery – a famous monastery of Tibetan Buddhism; and
  • the historic site of Gaochang.

As in all China Journeys, visitors will encounter many warm and welcoming people. The Silk Road encompasses the communities of several ethnic minorities who offer a tremendous variety of cuisine, song, dance, and traditional cultures and religions. Throughout these communities, tourists will experience local life, enjoy folklore, celebrate festivals, and have the opportunity to purchase exquisite handicrafts.

Village, Xinjiang

News


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China in the News Archives