A trip to China’s western province of Xinjiang is a journey to a China that you will not recognize. Although it has a history thousands of years long, and a population of over 1.5 billion, China’s economic and urban development can cause one to overlook the variety of its landscape. When people think of China, they can readily imagine its bustling cities and lush southern rice patties, but they often forget the arid deserts and snowy mountains of China’s far west. To journey to Xinjiang is to step back in time. As you explore the province, you will see nomads driving herds of livestock to market, grapes drying on wooden frames, and bread cooking in open stoves. With so much to see where does one begin?
How about retracing the Great Silk Road? The highway of the ancient world, the Silk Road conjures images of camel trains packed with bolts of silk and bags of richly colored spices. And indeed, much of this remains. Join us for a trip on camel back through markets that have existed for centuries. Explore the inside of Abakh Khoja Mausoleum and Id Kah Mosque, and then pick your way through the remnants of Kashgar’s Old Town. Break bread with an Uighur family and then sit back and relax as they entertain you with the swirls and chants of their traditional song and dance.
Are you a photographer looking for a more technical experience? Join WildChina expert and professional photographer Sean Gallagher for a photography expedition on the Silk Road. In addition to having his work featured in TIME Magazine, The New York Times, The Globe and Mail, Der Spiegel and National Geographic China, Sean also had the honor of serving as the official photographer for British Prime Minister, David Cameron’s 2010 visit to China. As you cross the desert with Sean, he will teach you techniques for landscape, portrait, and time-lapse photography.
If you are more interested in raw adventure, join us for a trek through the heights of the Heavenly Mountain: Mount Bogda. With snow capped peaks, and ruggedly hewn glaciers Mount Bogda offers a rare look at Xinjiang’s mountain terrain. Over the course of your hike, we will journey up to 13,350 feet above sea level then down again where we plunge into the Tuyog Village to visit with a local family and share our adventures. Go west with us, and discover a piece of China few even know exists.
Update: The Mount Bogda tour has been discontinued
These journeys are only starting points. We are happy to tailor to best suit your interests. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to begin building the perfect western adventure.
Photos by WildChina & Sean Gallagher